Education: Salvation in the Nursery

Eric Bennett is a four-year-old who lives in a predominantly Negro housing project in Detroit. His mother supports four sons on $198 a month in alimony and relief. Some of his playmates have never seen crayons, children's books, raw carrots or dogs (barred in the project). Many of them rarely see their fathers; others see too much of them because the men are jobless. Society has a way of dealing with boys like Eric. Sooner or later, they take an IQ test, get labeled "stupid." and quit school. The tests reflect "cultural" knowledge—things like dogs, crayons and fathers.

Last week Detroit had...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!