When Capitol Hill mom E.V. Downey went into business as an education consultant, she thought she’d cater to parents angling for advice on admission to private schools.
Instead, almost all of her clients are clamoring for help getting their children into a good D.C. public school. ...
Downey used to work as the admissions director for a private boys’ school in Washington until, seeking more flexible hours, she started her own business in 2011. (Her husband, Charles T. Downey, is a high school teacher who writes freelance music reviews for The Washington Post.)
Full disclosure: I got Chuck started blogging, leading to his moonlighting as a freelance art critic.
Race and class are two issues that simmer in the background — and occasionally burst to the forefront — of her conversations with parents. Downey steers parents away from schools that focus on teaching poor children, for example, saying that even top-ranked and much-lauded schools — such as KIPP DC and D.C. Prep — “wouldn’t feel like a very good fit” for a middle-class family.
Hodges, the recent D.C. transplant, told Downey and the other women in her seminar that she wouldn’t want her son to be in a school filled only with other white children, but that she also wouldn’t be comfortable in a neighborhood school where her son might be the only white child.