Black education in the U.S. is in an abysmal state (King, 2005). The fundamental root of this problem is an epistemological crisis--how we think about knowledge and literacy (Lee, 2005). The "normal science paradigm" (King, 2005, p. 7) perpetuates a cultural deficit orientation of learning in public discourse that conceptualizes Black students as at risk, disadvantaged, and illiterate. The normal science paradigm also supports how our schools and society operate to socially and academically divide and isolate Black and White students from each other. Thus, most White students are deemed literate, in mainstream schools, and visible to the public eye while too many Black students are deemed illiterate, in alternative schools, and invisible to the public eye. Students in U.S. schools are sorted (i.e., tracked) according to their social and academic (usually reading) achievement (Oakes, 1985). Those in the successful track make good grades, graduate from high school, attend college, and land better jobs (Fine, 1991). Students in the failing track are not regularly promoted to the next grade, do not graduate from high school, and if deemed antisocial are further penalized by being excluded from their regular schools into alternative education settings and the juvenile justice educational system (OJJDP, 2004). These divisive hegemonic social structures contribute to the achievement gap (Carpenter, Ramirez, & Severn, 2006), discipline gap (Monroe, 2005) and school-to-prison pipeline (Wald & Losen, 2003) in our society.