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YWCA discusses inequality in schools

The Young Womens Christian Association of Fort Wayne talks about systemic issues of poverty and how it affects education.

Posted: Jun. 27, 2018 6:22 PM
Updated: Jun. 27, 2018 6:23 PM

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WFFT)- This month the YWCA of Northeast Indiana discussed inequalities in local schools.

The key points they talked about were how systemic issues of poverty, housing segregation, and racial disparities impact education.

The director, Jennifer Rohlf said a lot of times what you'll find is a lot of finger pointing and blaming but this discussion is to bring the community together to find solutions.

"We wanted to bring the education about the education system and what's really impacting the funding, what's really impacting the way the youth are being educated,"she said.

Maria Norman who is a business analyst at Purdue University Fort Wayne and school board member for Fort Wayne Community Schools along with Lead Pastor Steve Terry Sr. of New Life Church of God spearheaded the discussion sharing their own experience and what they think will help the community move forward in the right direction.

Maria Norman said the struggle of a hand full of students can have a major effect on the community as a whole.

"It is such an individual journey for each student, and each family so what's right for my student isn't going to be right for my neighbor's student, but I want all students to succeed, so I hate that we're trying to make education such a cookie cutter one size fits all. That doesn't promote learning,"Norman said.

"We were asking is there achievement gap? For me, it's not an achievement gap. It's an expectation gap and again, the only way you can change expectation is by what you're exposed to. If i'm exposed to more, I'm learning more,"Terry added.

They say the way classrooms are structured now, there's not much room for creativity, or meeting the needs of each child individually to learn, but with the views shared today hopefully that could change.

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