The Post's Jan. 18 editorial, "Is Separation the Answer?," regarding the African-American "immersion schools" that will begin operation in the Milwaukee public school system in September, incorrectly suggested that we are creating two schools solely for African-American males.

The board of directors has voted to create programs in two co-ed schools -- one middle and one elementary -- that are now, and have been for decades, almost exclusively African American. And although self-respect and responsible behavior are clearly very important in the educational process, the primary focus of these schools will be academic.

As co-chairman, I can say that the implementation committee for these two programs has been developing a comprehensive curriculum and support structure for the children participating. The core curriculum will be multi-cultural with an African-American focus that will improve the opportunity for success for these children.

Milwaukee has made extensive efforts to desegregate all of its schools. We have the broadest student transportation program of any district in the country. We have an exchange program that affords 6,000 inner-city minority students the opportunity to attend school in the suburbs. Despite those efforts, we still have 19 racially identifiable schools.

The Washington Post should be screaming about the maintenance of those schools instead of wringing its hands over a program that will help children share in the rewards that have been denied them.