Opinion: Lewis W. Diuguid

By LEWIS W. DIUGUID / McClatchyDC 

John Quinones said things about education that baby boomers of color depended on for the needed lift out of America's ghettos and barrios.

"It was a lifesaver for me," said Quinones, ABC News anchor for the show "What Would You Do?" He spoke this month in Kansas City during the 120th Anniversary Benefit Dinner for the Mattie Rhodes Center. "The theory was the only way out of poverty is through education."

It led the San Antonio native to graduate from high school, get his bachelor of arts in speech communications from St. Mary's University and then a master's degree from the Columbia School of Journalism, which enabled his broadcast career to take off.

But urban schools aren't the launchpads to college and careers that they once were. That assessment came from Angela Davis in a speech last fall at the National Association for Multicultural Education convention in Oakland, California.

Davis, an author, 1960s radical and professor emerita at the University of California-Santa Cruz, said that too many schools today "play crucial roles in the prison-industrial pipeline" for African-American and Latino students. "Schools in poor neighborhoods look like juvenile facilities," she said.

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