The Politics of (De)Segregation

Authored by: Paul Green

Handbook of Education Politics and Policy

Print publication date:  June  2008
Online publication date:  June  2008

Print ISBN: 9780805861112
eBook ISBN: 9780203887875
Adobe ISBN: 9781135595586


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Democracy requires full participation of all citizens in the pursuit of a just society. An educated citizenry is symbiotically linked to this pursuit. The goal of education, in general, is to enable individuals to constitute their selves as full human beings. The goal of public education, in particular, is to provide children with the skills and knowledge necessary for effective, meaningful participation in all aspects of society, from access to adequate housing and employment, to engagement in and transformation of the political process (Powell, 2001). Decades of research have also substantiated Brown’s conclusion that racially segregated schools are likely to deprive students of an equal opportunity to learn. In a society where the minority population has tripled since the Brown decision, the consequences of segregation are all the more serious. Empirical evidence has further demonstrated that, for many communities, sustaining integrated schools is difficult without specific policies designed to maintain or create them (Harvard Civil Rights Project, 2006).

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