Power and Politics - I am Not the Yellow Peril

The life and times of an Asian American activist who tells all the truth (and dishes news and analysis) but with a leftwards slant.

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Trickle down effects of affirmative action ban

A little story about a tony public high school in the heart of Beverly Hills:
n 1969, when nearly every student at Beverly Hills High School was white, school officials went looking for some help diversifying the campus. They found it in the polyglot Los Angeles school system that surrounds the tony, iconic city.

Under a system of "diversity permits," the high school began enrolling scores of minority students from Los Angeles each year. For decades, the permit program aimed to bring in a deliberate mix of black, Latino and Asian students from outside the city limits.

Today, however, the vast majority of the students enrolled with diversity permits at Beverly Hills High are high-performing Asian students.

The dramatic shift stems from California's stringent anti-affirmative action law, approved by voters in 1996. Concerned with running afoul of the sweeping ban, Beverly Hills school officials have followed what amounts to a "don't ask, don't tell" policy on the diversity permits. Students who apply are not allowed to identify their race or ethnicity.
You've seen it at the flagship university level, now watch it happen at the high school level. What's next, offering "diversity" positions at elite preschools?

No, don't laugh, I'm sure it's happening in Manhattan right now...


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