Curriculum Strategies: Social Skills Intervention for Young African-American Males

By George R. Taylor | Go to book overview

1
Introduction

The severity and complexity of urban education problems have become so widely publicized that they may be considered common knowledge. It is readily recognized that there are many deep-rooted problems facing the educational system today. Problems plaguing the urban schools include drugs, violence, outdated equipment, apathy, low expectations by educators and students, classism, racism, and communities that do not seem to care. Schools and school districts are ill equipped to address and resolve all the problems and challenges faced with daily ( Wright, 1992).

A concerted community effort is needed to reverse the present trend. Interagency cooperation from the various human services departments is needed, headed by the school. Basic physical, social and emotional problems must be addressed, minimized, reduced, or eliminated before children can be successfully educated.

Many deprived Black male children reside in substandard environments where they are denied appropriate mental, physical and social stimulation. The culture and life styles of these communities impede normal growth and development in several key areas of functioning ( Matsueda & Heines, 1987; Butler O., 1989; Hatch & Gardner, 1988; Tomlinson, 1988). The impact of these negative cultural and life experiences have resulted in some alarming statistics.

Throughout history, many African-American males have faced adverse conditions. Wright ( 1992) reported that the African-American males in America continue to be that of an endangered species. It is apparent from statistical data that the African American community is in a crisis. For example, Shade and Edwards, ( 1987, p.123) have

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