Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Schools and Integration: Picking Up the Pieces

In the Seattle Times, Larry Gossett and john a. powell wrote about the positive side of the Supreme Court's decision in the Seattle and Louisville cases -- namely that "for the first time in history, the majority of the court recognizes a compelling government interest not only in ending state-sponsored (de jure) segregation, as in Brown, or in pursuing diversity in higher education, as in the University of Michigan affirmative action case Grutter v. Bollinger, but also in remedying racial isolation, regardless of its cause."

Gossett and powell go on to state, "The majority of the court has now explicitly recognized the serious harms of racial isolation in our communities and classrooms. The court also recognizes the impact of these arrangements on the promise of liberty and equality on which the nation was founded.

It is imperative that policymakers and the public not misread this case and overlook the opportunities this unprecedented acknowledgement opens up to achieve integration in our schools and neighborhoods."

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I went to a very diverse high school and you know what? The students segregated themselves. There was the Black Student Union, the Asian-American Club, and the Latino Pride Club. As an American of European descent, most of my friends looked like me--not because I wanted it that way, but because I was not welcome in other groups. I did have two black friends, but they lived in my neighborhood so I would have known them even if it was a smaller neighborhood school. My point is that even if you get the "perfect" allocation of races in a school (whatever that may be), you can't force friendships. People gravitate toward others that share their subculture, whether it's the Spanish-speakers or the goths.