Shifting Demographics Bring De Facto Segregation Series: School Desegregation RACE AND CLASS COLLIDE. Today the Monitor Begins a Three-Part Series on the Progress of School Desegregation in the United States Nearly 40 Years after the Supreme Court Decision That Began the Process. Second of 3 Articles Appearing Today

By Laurel Shaper Walters, writer of The Christian Science Monitor | The Christian Science Monitor, November 2, 1993 | Go to article overview

Shifting Demographics Bring De Facto Segregation Series: School Desegregation RACE AND CLASS COLLIDE. Today the Monitor Begins a Three-Part Series on the Progress of School Desegregation in the United States Nearly 40 Years after the Supreme Court Decision That Began the Process. Second of 3 Articles Appearing Today


Laurel Shaper Walters, writer of The Christian Science Monitor, The Christian Science Monitor


IN 1954, when the Supreme Court's Brown v. Board of Education decision outlawed "separate but equal" schools, 1 in 10 public-school students was nonwhite. Today, the ratio is 1 in 3.

This demographic shift and a growing urban-suburban split is leading to the resegregation of American schools nearly 40 years after the Brown decision.

A combination of housing patterns, demographics, and decisions in federal desegregation court cases has left many inner-city school districts, particularly in the northern United States, with few white students and de facto segregation.

"You can't integrate an 85 percent-plus minority district," explains John Brittain, a lawyer for the plaintiffs in a Connecticut school-desegregation lawsuit.

"The old gap between white and black schools has now been replaced by the gap between inner-city and suburban schools," Mr. Brittain says.

In the decades since Brown, court-mandated desegregation policies have created successful integration throughout the South. Today, the most extreme educational segregation is in the North.

"Brown was about the South," says Gary Orfield, a school-desegregation expert at Harvard University in Cambridge, Mass. "Nobody understood Brown to be about the North and the black urban communities. The idea was to make the South more like the North."

That initial goal has been accomplished or even exceeded, Professor Orfield says. "Even though the South has far more blacks as a proportion of its population, black students there are in much more contact with white students."

ONE reason for the success of school desegregation in the South is that school districts there were more likely to incorporate suburban areas into a desegregation plan, says Douglas Massey, a professor of sociology at the University of Chicago.

But in the northern states, attempts to desegregate schools "came up against a brick wall" with the 1973 Milliken v. Bradley Supreme Court decision, Professor Massey says. In rejecting a metropolitan plan that would have mixed Detroit's predominantly black schools with the largely white suburban school districts, the court ruled that urban-suburban integration is appropriate only if it can be proved that the suburbs helped create urban segregation.

"The Milliken v. Bradley case all but shut down the desegregation efforts, because even if you can show inner-city segregation, you cannot show that suburban segregation was responsible," Brittain says.

In deciding against the Detroit metropolitan plan, the United States Supreme Court deferred to the American tradition of community-based school systems and left the problem of segregation resulting from housing patterns unsolved.

"Class segregation is basically considered normal in our society," Orfield says. "Everybody thinks that they have a right to buy into a better school system if their income is high enough to move to a suburb."

But as underfunded urban schools sag under the weight of needy students and the US becomes more racially diverse, a reassessment is taking place. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Shifting Demographics Bring De Facto Segregation Series: School Desegregation RACE AND CLASS COLLIDE. Today the Monitor Begins a Three-Part Series on the Progress of School Desegregation in the United States Nearly 40 Years after the Supreme Court Decision That Began the Process. Second of 3 Articles Appearing Today
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.