It’s a lot more difficult for our mostly Hispanic students to break the cultural bonds and exterior limitations imposed by the outside world than, say, kids born in Boston or New York. Yes, people native to the Rio Grande Valley consider themselves as a big family composed of a mixture of Mexican and American cultures. Charro Days, for example, is a festivity attended each year near the end of February by almost 70,000 people. It celebrates the bonds and mutual heritage between two close knit cities, Brownsville and Matamoros; both urban areas “touch” each other on either side of the border, while connected by three very busy international bridges.
Just finished another round of testing, this time with the new state assessment for the state of Texas dreamed up by idle bureaucrats; the last one was perfectly O.K. It gave me however a chance to talk to freshmen from all walks of life once they finished testing. It’s amazing how much information and interest a teacher can elicit in a couple of days in open and frank exchanges. As usual, we had 3 hours with nothing to do – nothing allowed of course, except talking, till the gods of education decided to let us go to class for the last period.