McComb Educators Savor Small Victories While Wondering: Where Have All The Black Boys Gone?
As McComb County School District recognized its top performers last month, a glaring gap was apparent. There wasn’t a single black male senior among the students who had maintained an A average for three consecutive nine-week periods. This absence provided another reminder of the failure of schools in Mississippi to improve the academic performance of black boys, despite efforts spurred last year by the Coalition of Schools Educating Boys of Color (COSEBOC), a Boston-based group with a mission to improve the social, emotional and academic development of boys and young men of color.
It’s not that progress hasn’t been made: McComb High School moved from a grade of F to a C within the state’s accountability system last year. But the graduation rate at McComb High is still eight points less than the state’s average of 74.5 percent. And its high school drop-out rate of 24.5 percent is more than 10 points higher than the state, where it is 13.9 percent.