• Kyia Young

Racism in private schools (my experience)

disclaimer: this is meant to no way bash any individual involved in these situations. it's mostly a long overdue realization of how sheltered and misinformed children can be of different cultural backgrounds. ESPECIALLY at this day and age, parents need to start allowing their children to become more accepting of others, and not just letting them "figure it out" whenever they're older.

...and no names will be mentioned below!

**might be a tad lengthy**

I know this is random. I haven't been able to create blogs because I've had other priorities, and needed to divert my attention to such. However, this post is very informal but it's something that I've been wanting to get off my chest since my evacuation to Baton Rouge from New Orleans in '05. Yes, it's been that long.

Think of this like being a chapter in my personal memoir that you're reading. Don't look too deeply into the story, and please don't feel "sorry" for me...that's lame (lol). I'm reflecting on my growth as a person, as well as putting into perspective how sheltered white BR can be, because we all know there's a huge difference between scotlandville (where I spent most of my outside life) and perkins/bluebonnet (school area).

STARTS HERE:

My whole life I've had the privilege of attending great schools. Most notable: St. Agnes Parochial in New Orleans (RIP). The best of times, the best diversity, and to this day..I still consider this a place where I grew up. However, in 4th grade..long story short...Katrina happened so my family and I evacuated 45 minutes away to Baton Rouge, LA. Didn't really have a choice.

In Baton Rouge, [unnamed school] was allowing all Katrina kids to go to school with free tuition for a certain period of time. My parents researched and found that it was a great school to attend, etc. Long story short: The kids there and I were both in for a culture shock.

I've never, until this school, have been the ONLY black person (let alone a girl) in an entire 100 & something class. Other black kids dibbled and dabbled in our grade, but I was the only one that stayed from 4-8th grade, consecutively.

side note: a black boy came in 6th grade. however, we really didn't have a chance to REALLY become cool because we were automatically linked as being counterparts. Hmph, I wonder why...

Yes, I felt out of place. To be honest, I did throughout the whole 3.5 years spent at [unnamed school], I just hid it well.

There were definitely some racist moments that I can vividly remember and still to this day wish I would've said something. Knowing the person I've grown to be, it would've definitely been an argument..maybe a slight suspension on both sides lol.

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1. Religion Class Situation (7th or 8th grade)

Favorite teacher ran this class. She was a nun at the time. Long story short: the conversation had diverted to loud music. Boy sitting directly behind me made note that his mom hates whenever "blacks" played loud music in their car. He then went on to elaborate how she often uses the n-word in her vocabulary. How the teacher handled it? I mean....she pulled me to the side and asked if I was alright. The remainder of that class was awkward as hell. I just shrugged and went on about my day.

2. Social Studies Situation (5th Grade)

Of course the topic of the day was slavery...and I'm the only black person in the room. Dude sitting diagonally behind me "tries to whisper" to his friend sitting next to me if the black person in the slave poster, stating "nigger" was me. She nodded. Girl...

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There were more, but once the black boy came in 6th grade--most of the racism was unfortunately targeted towards him because of his darker complexion. Chile, the stories I can remember were ridiculous.....

All in all, I chose my own high school...yes, it was private. It was fun. I didn't have one of those bad high school experiences like some others. Definitely many learning experiences, but it was straight.

No, I never told my parents. I really just moved on with my life after this, until I realized how many of those people have their own families now and how important sharing these experiences with others are. There's so much hate in the world, and I don't understand why it's solely based on the way someone looks, how much money they have, and their social classification. These are definitely not the "issues" at large, considering there's an entire bigot running for second term. His whole campaign continues to spew language of distrust and stereotypes on all spectrums. Hate to be the elephant in the room, but here I am....not caring.

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