The recent University of California Office of the President report has an analysis of admissions that is, in essence, a hoax.
Rather than presenting an accurate picture of the continued under-representation of black, Latino and Native American students in the University of California system, especially at UC Berkeley, the report deliberately presents half-truths in order to lay the groundwork to drive out more underrepresented minority students from UC.
The report begins with a flawed premise.
The so-called academic factors such as grades and test scores are accurate measures of qualification into the UC system, when they are, in fact, biased criteria used to justify admitting fewer minority and poor students.
The report’s misleading analysis implies that underrepresented minority students have the best chances of getting admitted into UC. However, the reality is just the opposite.
In last year’s Supreme Court case, Grutter v. Bollinger, opponents of affirmative action made the same arguments and were rejected by the Court.
Affirmative action was upheld.
According to Eugene Garcia, former dean of UC Berkeley’s Graduate School of Education, only three to four percent of all Latino high school graduates and only two to three percent of all black high school graduates in California completed the necessary prerequisite courses to be eligible to apply to the UC schools.
Segregated minority-majority schools don’t offer the required courses.
The additional SAT requirements cut that percentage in half, thanks to the bias in the test.
Today, UC San Diego enrolls less than one percent black students, and UC Berkeley’s underrepresented minority student population is less than half of the statewide proportion.
These numbers are the real source of outrage and public alarm. To cast a blind eye at the segregation of our state’s flagship university is simply to certify inequality.
The resegregated reality of the UC system underlines the necessity for not only holistic, comprehensive review admissions, but it also makes clear the necessity for even more aggressive recruitment, admissions and retention programs at the University of California schools.
The ASUC passed two important motions addressing this crisis at UC Berkeley and throughout the UC system.
First, to demand hiring a new chancellor who will aggressively recruit, admit and retain underrepresented minority students, especially at UC Berkeley.
Secondly, to demand UC Regent Ward Connerly’s immediate removal from the position that he has used to spearhead a series of right-wing attacks on affirmative action, integration and civil rights.
The UC system should be a leading institution for achieving equality in education.
Fifty years after Brown v. Board of Education, we cannot allow any increase in separate and unequal.
Yvette Felarca is an organizer with the Coalition to Defend Affirmative Action, Integration, and Immigrant Rights and Fight for Equality By Any Means Necessary.