Social Segregation Essay

1477 Words 6 Pages
In 1954 the landmark Supreme Court decision, Brown v. Board of Education, decided that separate was far from equal when it came to the public education system. This monumental ruling has spurred protests throughout the years as many citizens questioned its effectiveness and seriousness of purpose. Sixty years later, the decision is still being questioned as recent trends indicate that several schools across the country, especially in the inner cities, are experiencing racial resegregation. The current trend of resegregation in public schools stems from changing racial and cultural demographics as well as relaxed laws at the federal, state, and district level. Jeremy Fiela relates school resegregation to a model of social closure through discussions …show more content…
Aaron Taylor discusses the demographic changes in St. Louis, Missouri that create racially isolated housing communities, and in turn, racially isolated schools. The “white flight” that began following New Deal policies during World War II was never corrected, as more white families continue to move to the suburbs and black families remained in the inner city (Taylor 183). Even as an increased number of racially diverse families started to relocate to the outskirts of major cities, they continued to live in racially segregated neighborhoods creating schools with isolated student bodies. Taylor found that in St. Louis today, 71% of either black or white residents would have to move in order to live in a “residential tract that is reflective of the region’s racial composition” (184). The continuation of this trend following the New Deal has created schools in St. Louis where black students are either 20% overrepresented or underrepresented in all but one of the school districts (Taylor 185). The demographics of St. Louis, and in other cities across the country, have changed as more black and Hispanic families leave the city for life in a suburban community, but they continue to live in segregated neighborhoods which then produce segregated schools. Suburban neighborhoods continue to segregate based on race and nationality, as well as economics and financial need. Like St. …show more content…
White enclaves, schools in which the enrollment of white students is higher than the enrollment of white students in the entire school district, have been using eased legislation in their favor (Frankenberg et al. 40). In their study the authors focus on Parents Involved in Seattle, Washington who forced a tiebreaker to determine school assignments to oversubscribed high schools (Frankenberg et al. 42). The school district required that the schools were within ten percent of the districts white and nonwhite composition, so Parents Involved manipulated the percentages so that they were within forty-one and fifty-nine percent. Using the tiebreaker system, Parents Involved was able to transfer students that would assimilate with the student population already there, rather than fix the racial imbalance (Frankenberg et al. 43). Like Parents Involved, the authors found white enclaves across the country who manipulate school assignment policies to ensure segregation, and increase their power over school boards by holding at-large elections that counteract the work of those fighting for integration. If active groups like Parents Involved continue to play such a large role in the demographic and legal development of America’s

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