Each one, reach one


Louisiana ranks 43rd in the United States for black male high school graduation rates, according to a report by the Schott Foundation for Public Education released in February. In 2012-13, 53 percent of Louisiana black male students completed high school in four years, compared to the national average of 59 percent. Yea, you may look at those numbers and say that’s not much of a gap and may even think it’s none of your business but I beg to differ – it is our business.

It’s not about race, it’s about what’s right and what each of us can do to improve the futures of our youth. Here in Ascension, we’re amongst the best in the state in school performance but we aren’t strong until we can share our blessing.

In the report, it revealed the gap between black and white males in Louisiana was smaller than the national norm. In four years, 69 percent of white Louisiana males graduated, making for a 16-point difference. The national gap was 21 points: 80 percent for white males, 59 percent for black males.

Latino males in Louisiana beat the national average: 70 percent of them graduated in four years, compared to 65 percent nationally.

But again, Ascension it’s time for us to share our blessing. For the community leaders who run fine business, have fine homes and live a good quality of life it’s time to share the wealth with our youth so they can be exposed to success. It doesn’t take money to make an impact either.

It’s important for us all to invest and sew into our youth of all races because all of their futures matter. There are free resources that community leaders can present to the schools to help teachers and students improve reading and writing skills.

In talking to leaders, it’s being noted there is a major problem with our youth’s reading and writing skills and that could be a major reason some racial populations are dropping off by the time the 12th grade comes. 

When numbers like these are presented, it is incumbent on the community leaders to find those struggling students and help make sure they are equipped with proper resources to achieve. If each leader takes one struggling student then a difference can certainly be made. Each one, reach one.