The Future Of The U.S. Belongs To Nonwhites. Are Educators Ready?

“This is the last time anyone will try to do this,” a Republican strategist told journalist Ron Brownstein last week, “this” being a near total reliance on white votes to win a presidential election.

According to Brownstein, Romney probably needs to win at least 61 percent of the white vote in order to just squeak out a majority. But future generations of Republican politicians will have to appeal to nonwhite voters who hold far more liberal views about the role of government than does the party’s current base. It’s now or never for the GOP’s white base.

The demographics of the United States are changing rapidly, and one of the best places to see this dramatic demographic shift in action is to visit public schools in Texas, where the Hispanic population is swelling rapidly.

In 2011, for the first time, Hispanics became the majority of public school students in Texas.

By 2050, the number of Texas public school students is expected to swell to nine million from roughly five million now, and nearly two-thirds will be Hispanic, according to Steve Murdock, a demographer and director of Rice University’s Hobby Center for the Study of Texas. The overall percentage of white students will drop by half to about 15 percent.

The Future Of The United States Is Tied To The “Minority”Population

From The New York Times:

“When you look at children, there is no doubt. The future of Texas — the future of the United States — is tied to the minority population,” said Dr. Murdock, a former state demographer and director of the United States Census Bureau. “It’s just mathematically true.”

A quick glance at other student demographics confirms this view.

In the 2010-2011 statistics for California, Hispanic or Latino students make up 51% of those attending K-12 public schools, with White (non-Hispanic) coming in at 27% and African Americans at 7%. The Los Angeles Unified School District is made up of 73% Hispanic students and 10% African American students.

Chicago public schools have a student population of 42% African American, 44% Hispanic and 9% White.

There’s a similar picture in New York City: in 2007, Hispanic students made up 39.4% of the student population, African Americans 32.2% of the student population, and White American just 14.2%.

Let’s go back to those Hispanic students in Texas, where there is an accompanying shift in economic status.

Economically disadvantaged children in Texas classrooms make up 60 percent of all public school students, up from less than half in 2000. Students with limited English skills now make up 16 percent of them. Of about 979,000 children added to the state’s under-18 population from 2000 to 2010, 931,000 were Hispanic.

From The New York Times:

According to state data, Hispanic students are statistically less likely to leave high school with a diploma than their white peers. Of the Hispanic students who do graduate, a minority are prepared for college. In 2010, 42 percent met college-readiness benchmarks in both English and math, compared with 66 percent of white students.

Among economically disadvantaged students and those with limited English proficiency, the gap continues to widen. Thirty-eight percent of students who came from low-income households did well enough on their Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills or college entrance exams to qualify as “college ready.” Only 5 percent of those with limited English language skills did so.

Stop Blaming The Kids!

Patricia Lopez, a research associate at the University of Austin’s Texas Center for Education Policy, is sick of hearing how the students are to blame for all that’s wrong with education these days.

“It’s more common to hear things like kids take poverty into schools, kids take broken home into schools,” she said, “but people who are educators also take their baggage into schools.”

According to Lopez, a shift in perspective needs to happen in the way policy makers at the state and district level think about educating Hispanic and low-income students. And if that were to happen, the possibilities are exciting.

From The New York Times:

If Texas can adequately educate the new student majority, Dr. Murdock said, the potential reward is large. As a state with a population that is, over all, growing younger rather than older, its work force would be competitively poised to replace a generation of retiring baby boomers, he said, taking advantage of the accompanying economic opportunity and higher incomes.

The United States has always been a nation of immigrants. This is a significant part of our demographic history – how our population has grown to 300 million people. It was the excitement of that promise that caused me to leave my native England and move here over 25 years ago.

And the future of the United States belongs with our so-called “minority” population. Isn’t it time for Republicans and education policy makers alike to sit up, pay attention and stop living in the past? Are they up to the job?

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Photo Credit: thinkstock


Kathy Perez
Kathy Johnson5 years ago

we are called the melting pot for a reason. Just so long as we keep core values strong.. power to all people who are willing to work and help and learn! Who cares what color you are!?

Wendy Schroeder
Wendy Schroeder5 years ago

As a white woman I can say I don't care if America is no longer a "white nation". It seems to me that white people in general worship the allmighty dollar too much. My grandson will be part black and latino. He will fit right into the new America.

Danielle Medina
Danielle Medina5 years ago

I add to my previous comment that each people group deserves to be ruled by members of their own people to avoid the possiblity of being oppressed by others.

Danielle Medina
Danielle Medina5 years ago

I would like all nations and tribes to prosper equally-the nonwhites having it as good materialistically and finacially as the whites. I wish for all human colors of the rainbow to continue to exist for the sake of the unique beauty and culture of every ethnic group not disappearing, and I wish for world peace with no genecide against anyone. And I feel that those who would punish a whole ethnic group (right down to the babies) because the color of their skin matches that of evil people instead of judging people by their individual morals, are wrong. It is morally wrong to deny people the option to live in a community of their own culture-this goes for every ethnic group on the planet.

Myriam G.
Myriam G5 years ago

Good people, please,

races DO NOT exist! It's a concept, initially manufactured to try to give people an identity, and later on served to set us against one another. Races have NO scientific basis whatsoever. What makes somebody "white" or "non-white"? Yes, Stevie Wonder and Paul McCartney (two randomly-picked people) do not look alike, but still they belong to the same race: the human race.

"Until the colour of a man's skin is of no more significance than the colour of his eyes, then everywhere is war", said Bob Marley. I thought that this "everywhere" meant "everywhere BUT places like Care2"... unfortunately, I was wrong...

Ernest Roth
Ernest R5 years ago

@ pam w. If you actually read my posts, you would realize that I am not a white supremacist, but a white participant. I question whether “Numerically, within a few centuries.” humans will still exist. I fail to see that everyone being brown, or beige, would be an improvement over diversity, even if hate filled racists like yourself would prefer it.

scarlett g.
.5 years ago

ATTENTION GRABBER EH???Another article designed to keep the ill feelings of some flowing, and to continue dividing instead of uniting.....recently a THEME among the Care2 authors

pam w.
pam w5 years ago

(contd) much as you hate it, within a few centuries, the people of the planet will be (GASP) SHADES OF BROWN.

Here...take a tissue & I'll tell you the solution.

You & your supremacist buddies must pool your cash, buy a large island somewhere far away and form your own nation..."WHITE HYSTERIA LAND."

Close your doors, grow your own food, don't buy our stuff and keep to yourselves.

We will NOT miss you!

pam w.
pam w5 years ago

To Ernest & the other white supremacists.....GET OVER IT!

Have you traveled in the world? If you have, you've seen that "brown" people FAR outnumber caucasians. Do some research and learn how few of us there are. Think about tomorrow. Numerically, within a few centuries....ALL peoples of the world will be SHADES OF BROWN.

(Makes you all weepy, doesn't it?)

And just what makes you so convinced that's a bad thing? Because Europeans developed "technology?" Yes, many peoples in Africa were living in a more "primitive" way until the Europeans got there and immediately devastated their nations/tribes through the sheer arrogance and greed of "colonialism."

BUT...given education, Africans are showing they're as intelligent and capable as anyone in Europe. Given education, Africans, Native Americans, Hispanics, etc....all of them....are showing (GASP) they're JUST AS INTELLIGENT AND CAPABLE AS YOU ARE, Ernest!

(And I'll bet THIS makes you all ANGRY inside, doesn't it?) (I'll probably receive even MORE hate mail for this post, won't I? Never mind...I won't read it.)

Europeans (aka "whites") have made an enormous mess of the planet with their industrial focus, greed, devastation and expansionist policies. Asians have been equally (and in some cases...MORE guilty) than Europeans.

Now, sadly, we all must somehow recover TOGETHER or die together..

You have to face the facts, Ernest! You cannot stop what's happening ethnically and culturally in the

Sammadhi Sativa
Sammadhi Sativa5 years ago

Are educators ready? I don't think white people in general have ever been ready to have anyone but white people in this 'one nation under Woo.' Indians could not be citizens until the late 1960s and a law had to be passed for that! Every time a white person gets fired from a job and that job slot is filled by a so-called minority, white people claim immigrants, illegal ones at that!, are stealing American jobs from them good ol' boys. I've seen news reports with graphics detailing the 'invasion' of Hispanics into white-man territories, read by an obviously uncomfortable white woman who was the news anchor. The story begged other white people to move to towns to offset the horrible conditions of being surrounded by non-crackers. America keeps forgetting that its color is NOT white!