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Punished for Dreaming by Bettina L. Love Cover
Punished for Dreaming by Bettina L. Love
Published at:
Biography & Autobiography
St. Martin's Press

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## Punished for Dreaming: How School Reform Harms Black Children and How We Heal - An Extended Synopsis In "Punished for Dreaming," Dr. Bettina L. Love delivers a searing indictment of forty years of failed education reform in America. This powerful book meticulously unpacks how, beginning with the Reagan administration, a "War on Black Children" has unfolded within the American education system. Drawing parallels to Michelle Alexander's seminal work "The New Jim Crow," Dr. Love argues that under the guise of reform, policies were implemented that disproportionately criminalized and penalized Black students. The push for "school choice" and standardized testing, coupled with the influx of policing in schools, has created an environment where Black children are more likely to be punished, suspended, and pushed out of the classroom than their white peers. Through the poignant stories of 25 Black individuals who came of age in this hostile educational landscape, "Punished for Dreaming" gives voice to the lived experiences of those most impacted by these damaging policies. The book exposes the deeply ingrained anti-Blackness that underpins the narrative of Black children as "low-performing" and perpetuates a cycle of inequity and injustice. Dr. Love doesn’t stop at diagnosis; she offers a bold vision for healing and transformation. Incorporating insights from leading U.S. economists, she presents a compelling case for reparations in education. This goes beyond financial compensation, encompassing a complete systemic overhaul that prioritizes Black children’s humanity, creativity, and right to dream. "Punished for Dreaming" is a clarion call for action. It is essential reading for educators, policymakers, parents, and anyone committed to dismantling systemic racism and creating a just and equitable education system for all children. ## FAQs **1. Who is this book for?** This book is for anyone interested in education reform, racial justice, and social equity. It is especially relevant for educators, policymakers, parents, and students who want to understand the historical and systemic factors that contribute to racial disparities in education. **2. What makes this book different from other books about education reform?** "Punished for Dreaming" centers the experiences of Black children and families who have been most impacted by harmful education policies. The book connects the dots between seemingly disparate events and policies, revealing a systemic pattern of anti-Blackness in the American education system. **3. Is this book only about problems in education, or does it offer solutions?** While "Punished for Dreaming" doesn’t shy away from exposing the harsh realities of the current system, it also offers a hopeful and actionable path forward. Dr. Love advocates for reparations in education, outlining concrete steps towards achieving educational justice for Black children. **4. What is the significance of the book’s title?** The title "Punished for Dreaming" encapsulates the book's central argument: that Black children are being denied their right to an equitable education and punished for daring to dream of a better future. It highlights the ways in which systemic racism stifles creativity, innovation, and joy in learning. **5. Is this book just for Black readers?** While the book centers Black experiences, it is essential reading for anyone who wants to understand and dismantle systemic racism in education. It offers valuable insights and tools for all individuals to become advocates for educational equity.

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