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The Trouble With Black Boys: ...And Other Reflections on Race, Equity, and the Future of Public Education

ISBN: 978-0-7879-8874-6
352 pages
March 2008, Jossey-Bass
The Trouble With Black Boys: ...And Other Reflections on Race, Equity, and the Future of Public Education (078798874X) cover image


For many years to come, race will continue to be a source of controversy and conflict in American society. For many of us it will continue to shape where we live, pray, go to school, and socialize. We cannot simply wish away the existence of race or racism, but we can take steps to lessen the ways in which the categories trap and confine us. Educators, who should be committed to helping young people realize their intellectual potential as they make their way toward adulthood, have a responsibility to help them find ways to expand identities related to race so that they can experience the fullest possibility of all that they may become. In this brutally honest—yet ultimately hopeful— book Pedro Noguera examines the many facets of race in schools and society and reveals what it will take to improve outcomes for all students. From achievement gaps to immigration, Noguera offers a rich and compelling picture of a complex issue that affects all of us.
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Table of Contents

The Author.


Part One: The Student Experience.

1. Joaquin’s Dilemma: Understanding the Link Between Racial Identity and School-Related Behaviors.

2. The Trouble with Black Boys: The Impact of Social and Cultural Forces on the Academic Achievement of African American Males.

3. And What Will Become of Children Like Miguel Fernández?/Y Qué Pasará Con Jóvenes Como Miguel Fernández? Education, Immigration, and the Future of Latinos in the United States.

4. How Listening to Students Can Help Schools to Improve.

Part Two: The Search for Equity.

5. Latino Youth: Immigration, Education, and the Future.

6. Preventing and Producing Violence: A Critical Analysis of Responses to School Violence.

7. Schools, Prisons, and Social Implications of Punishment: Rethinking Disciplinary Practices.

8. Racial Politics and the Elusive Quest for Excellence and Equity in Education.

Part Three: The Schools We Need.

9. Reclaiming the Promise of Public Education With Alan Blankstein.

10. Standards for What? Accountability for Whom? Rethinking Standards-Based Reform in Public Education.

11. Racial Isolation, Poverty, and the Limits of Local Control as a Means for Holding Public Schools Accountable.

12. Transforming Urban Schools Through Investments in Social Capital.

Notes and References.

Epilogue: Joaquin’s Dilemma Revisited.


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Author Information

Pedro A. Noguera is a professor at the Steinhardt School of Education at New York University, the executive director of the Metropolitan Center for Urban Education, and the co-director of the Institute for the Study of Globalization and Education in Metropolitan Settings (IGEMS).
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The Wiley Advantage

URGENT SUBJECT: Covers provocative topics like race relations, racial identity, school violence, and desegregation
BROAD & COMPREHENSIVE IN SCOPE:  This book will cover a wide range of topics and issues for a broad audience.  It will offer an accessible overview of the race/equity debates for concerned citizens and students.
RESPECTED AUTHORITY: Pedro Noguera's background as a respected African-American scholar brings relevance an d reality to his articles.
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Influenced by culture and aware of the lack of prospects for them,black boys in particular, but minority students of all kinds, make the kinds of poor choices that fulfill the low expectations of their teachers and the broader society. Education professor Noguera examinesthe cultural, societal--and personal--factors that create the stubborn link between race and poverty. In this compelling series of essays, Noguera cites research and his own personal experience--as a minority, a father, and an educator--to explore the myriad ways that young black and Hispanic males are expected to run afoul of middle-class American norms and often do. He argues that public schools, despite their abysmal record, are the only institutions with the access and resources to turn around troubling social trends. He points to research comparing the disciplinary tactics of public schools and prisons, institutions that have far too much in common with so many male minority students dropping out of schools and landing in prison. A thoughtful look at issues of race and educational equity.—Vanessa Bush (Booklist Review, May 8, 2008)

“Explores strategies that can change the culture and structure of schools to support the aspirations and identities of minority students.”—N.N. Arnez, emeritus, Howard University Recommended

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The Trouble With Black Boys: ...And Other Reflections on Race, Equity, and the Future of Public Education (US $24.95)

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