Segregation rising, 60 years after Brown v. Board of Education
This month marks 60 years since the landmark desegregation ruling Brown v. the Board of Education and though times have certainly changed, true equality has not been completely achieved — far from it. The Civil Rights Project at UCLA analyzed data from the school’s Education Department to determine that segregation has actually been on the rise since 1990. Overall, black students are more segregated than they were in 1970. The percentage of black students who go to schools with predominantly white students was only 23 percent in 2011, down from 44 percent at its near-equality point in 1988.
It is not just black students who are experiencing segmentation in public schools. Latino students are more likely to attend schools with other students in their demographic than black students are to go to school with their racial peers.
The placement of students is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to inequalities though. Minority students, even as young as preschool, are suspended at larger rates than their white counterparts. Minorities are also at a disadvantage when it comes to advanced science and math courses being offered at their schools, putting them behind the economic curve.
The bottom line is that even though the Brown v. the Board of Education ruling DID break down barriers, it could only go so far. The rest is up to society when it comes to actually doing the right thing and seeking out equal educational opportunities for all students. The hope is that in another 60 years, the achievement gap will be even smaller, and that segregation will be a word in history books alone.