Science & Tech

Public school districts resegregating by race, study finds

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Harvard Civil Rights Project releases report

While the 2000 census results illustrate that the United States has more racial and ethnic diversity than ever before, school data from the year 2000-2001 collected by the U.S. Department of Education indicates that school children are largely isolated from this growing diversity. The Civil Rights Project at Harvard University’s new report, Race in American Public Schools: Rapidly Resegregating School Districts, disaggregates national data to the district level in order to examine the patterns of segregation as they affect our nation’s youth. Some of the key findings of this study which examines segregation trends in large school districts across the country are: — Many of the districts experiencing the highest black-white resegregation are also resegregating in Latino exposure to whites. — Districts that show the least resegregation in black-white exposure are mostly in the South, likely due to lingering effects of desegregation plans in these districts where the plans have been dissolved and the continuing impacts of plans still in place. — Despite an increasingly racially diverse public school enrollment, white students in over one-third of the districts analyzed became more isolated from black and/or Latino students, from 1986-2000.