Segregation: Separate but Equal and American Public Schools

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On May 17, 1954 the United States Supreme Court struck down the separate but equal doctrine in American public schools (Willoughby 40). The Constitution of the United States of America, Amendment XVI states that:

All persons born or naturalized in the United States of America, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the state wherein they reside. No state shall make ore enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws. Segregation is a violation of this amendment; therefore, making it unconstitutional. If segregation is unconstitutional then why is segregation still present in our school system?

Racial segregation is strongly linked to segregation by class: nearly 90 percent of intensely segregated schools for Blacks and Latinos are also schools in which at least half of the student body is economically disadvantaged. These schools are traditionally associated with fewer resources, fewer advanced course offerings, more inexperienced teachers and lower average test scores. At the same time, despite the unequal resources that are traditionally associated with high poverty and minority schools, students in these schools are being subjected to increasingly rigorous testing that can have serious stakes attached for student promotion and graduation (Orfield 58). The individual States do not want admit that segregation is present in our schools; therefore, no responsibility is being taken. Schools that have a high percentage of drugs, violence and gangs are mostly occupied by Blacks and Hispanics.

"Separate and unequal continues. More that 80 percent of Black and Latino segregated schools are in high poverty areas, compared with 5 percent of segregated white schools" (Willoughby 46)....
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