President Barack Obama last week revealed an executive order mandating improved educational access and opportunity for African-Americans. The White House spells out critical need areas in closing the achievement gap for African-American students at the secondary level, and promoting college readiness through community improvement, better partnerships between non-profits and federal agencies towards student engagement, and increased resources to schools largely serving African-Americans.
Throughout the order, President Obama name checks his White House Initiative on HBCUs and increased partnership with HBCUs as the way to strengthening opportunities for Black folks. The order has some flaws, such as questionable timing and the thinking behind its leadership selection process. But overall, it’s the first major step to sufficiently reversing historic negligence of Black folks through empowering the institutions best equipped to serve the community.