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To Change a Culture; Making achievement cool.
[FINAL Edition]
The Washington Post - Washington, D.C.
Subjects: Academic achievement; Blacks; Education; Self image; Studies; Black culture
Author: Raspberry, William
Date: Dec 5, 1997
Start Page: A.27
Section: OP/ED

The phone rang just after I had finished an interview with a researcher whose dismal findings threatened to ruin my day. What the researcher found is a stunning disconnect between the academic achievement of black boys and their self-esteem.

It is the resulting academic failure that I had intended to write about. But then came the phone call from Hugh Price, president of the National Urban League, who wanted to talk not about the problem but about a stunningly ambitious approach to solving it. As a result, I'm writing today about the solution. I'll get to the problem later.

Price has pulled together 20 national black organizations, comprising some 25 million members and ranging from fraternities and sororities to the Congress of National Black Churches, to launch a program designed to do two things:

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