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Opposing the Gap in Racial Disparities in School Extracurricular Activities

WHEREAS, the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People ("'NAACP") seeks to improve the livelihood of children by ensuring that African American children are exposed to a wide range of extracurricular activities; and

WHEREAS, African American children are widely underrepresented in most extracurricular activities including but not limited to selected and exclusive sports and music, dance, STEAM and other arts programs; and

WHEREAS, African American children's experiences are cut short due to exclusion from expansive extracurricular opportunities and a disproportionate funneling into selected extracurricular activities such as football, basketball and cheerleading; and 

WHEREAS, African American children's expectations regarding future educational and career opportunities are also cut short due to this exclusion; and 

WHEREAS, African American children are at a higher risk of grade retention and school suspension and have a decreased rate of entering into gifted programs; and

WHEREAS, due to systemic economic disadvantages, parents of African American children are forced to view a college education through a narrow lens of sports scholarships as the only means by which their children could become financially successful; and

WHEREAS, the vast disparities in extracurricular activities are due to the school systems' lack of funding provided to African American communities and lack of interest in the overall experience of African American children; and

WHEREAS, the benefits of racial integration flow from opportunities of all children to participate in a wide variety of extracurricular activities, as the U.S. Supreme Court recognized in its unanimous 1968 Green decision; and

WHEREAS, the support of expanded extracurricular activities is pivotal to the healthy social, emotional, and academic development of African American children and communities.

THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that the NAACP will advocate for such support through both federal and state funding mechanisms including but not limited to Title One Funding, which supports the academic improvement of "disadvantaged" students and communities. 

BE IT FINALLY RESOLVED that the NAACP will advocate for substantive legislation and appropriations to help states support programs geared specifically toward increasing diversity of the extracurricular activities offered to children.