Oral Lee Brown was born in
Mississippi in the early 1940s. She is the ninth of twelve children
born to 'old-fashioned farming folk' who grew cotton and corn. Today
she lives in Oakland, California.
Although California reports an official graduation rate of 87% to the Federal Government using a Federal formula, on the Dept of State website they say the rate is closer to 71% (based on the % of freshmen who enter high school and go on to earn a diploma four years later). That number is troubling enough, but things look even worse when broken down by ethnic group - according to The Civil Rights Project at Harvard the Californian graduation rate for African-Americans is 57% (50% for boys) and 60% for Latinos (54% for boys). The Manhattan Institute for Policy Research (which tracks public school graduation rates across the nation) reports a similar picture across the USA, based on its 2000 data: 69% overall, 53% Hispanic, 55% African-American, 76% White, 79% Asian.
According to the US News & World Report, the USA ranks 16th among 20 developed nations when comparing school graduation rates.
Link: The Oral Lee Brown Foundation.
This article is from the April 6, 2005 issue of BookBrowse Recommends.
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