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Reaction to Kai's Poem

Chandrea's picture

I really enjoyed Kai's poem and although I'm not black, I found myself relating to the experiences she was describing because I would describe myself as a woman of color too. When she called out the characteristics of her fellow classmates in AP classes, I thought about my experiences as a student in an AP class. My high school is very diverse, socioeconomically and racially, so most of the classes had students from all kinds of backgrounds. But what I eventually discovered was that the higher up a level a class I went, the less diverse the classes became. So by the time I was a senior and taking on more challenging classes, I found myself being the only person of color in the class. I would think an observation like that was irrelevant, like it shouldn't have bothered me, but it did. I had moments where I would feel isolated and sometimes I couldn't relate to other. And I often second guessed myself and felt like I had to put in two times as much work to compensate for my skin color. Sometimes I even wondered if learning English as my second language made me less capable than my English speaking peers. I wanted to know why I seemed to struggle more than anyone else in class. I wondered why I was the only person of color in an AP class and I'm sure there are students that are experiencing what I experienced back then.


Jomaira's picture

I felt the exact same way.

I felt the exact same way. Although my high school was predominantly composed of students of color, almost everyone in my honors and AP classes were white. I think there's something about our education system, media, government etc. that send the message that those who look like me or you don't have what it takes to "make it" and then eventually those barriers begin to feel real.