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  • ½ of those who drop out or are pushed out are unemployed. 80% of prisoners did not complete high school


  • 1. Quality and Equity in Education March 6, 2008 john a. powell Williams Chair in Civil Rights & Civil Liberties, Moritz College of Law & Director, Kirwan Institute for the Study of Race and Ethnicity
  • 2. Education: Reframing the Issues
    • Education and democratic purpose
    • Importance of institutional arrangements
    • Education reform for the benefit of ALL students, not just those historically disadvantaged
    • What is true integration?
  • 3. Goals of Education
    • What are our educational goals?
    • The mission statement for the US Department of Education includes ensuring equal access to education and promoting educational excellence throughout the nation.
    • The U.S. Supreme Court has identified the objectives of public education as “the inculcation of fundamental values necessary for the maintenance of a democratic political system .”
    Democratic Merit
  • 4.
    • What are our requirements for a legitimate democratic state?
      • All citizens must be members of society
      • Membership must be attainable for all through public education
      • There must be freedom for individuals to join the civil discourse
      • Structures and outcomes must be in line with the collective ethics of the populace.
      • There must be real opportunity for change …
    • Membership must have meaning!
    Membership in a Legitimate Democratic State
  • 5. Importance of institutional arrangements… Lower Educational Outcomes for Urban School Districts Increased Flight of Affluent Families from Urban Areas Neighborhood (Housing) Segregation School Segregation (Economic)
  • 6. Challenges for Public Education
    • Economic segregation
    • Racial segregation
    • Achievement gap
    • Discipline rates
    • Funding disparities
    • Graduation rates
  • 7.
    • Challenge: Correlation of Race and School Poverty (Ohio example)
  • 8. Poverty and academic performance (Ohio example, 2003-2004)
  • 9. School Segregation Today: Segregation and Student Poverty
  • 10. School Segregation Today: Segregation and Student Performance
  • 11. Integration vs. Desegregation
    • “ The word segregation represents a system that is prohibitive; it denies the Negro equal access to schools, parks, restaurants, libraries and the like. Desegregation is eliminative and negative...”
    • “ Integration is creative, and is therefore more profound and far-reaching than desegregation. Integration is the positive acceptance of desegregation...”
    • “ Integration is genuine intergroup, interpersonal doing. Desegregation then, rightly, is only a short-range goal. Integration is the ultimate goal of our national community.”
    Source: Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. “The Ethical Demands of Integration.” December 27, 1962.
  • 12. Integration into Opportunity
    • Segregation is more than just the physical isolation of people
    • Segregation is isolation from opportunity or opportunity structures
    • Integration is not just about bringing in more people.
    • Integration into opportunity
  • 13.
    • “ Helps students avoid or overcome stereotypes by providing a range of experiences and viewpoints…;
    • Promotes cross-cultural understanding and helps students develop interpersonal skills for a multiracial world;
    • Prepares students for a racially diverse workplace;
    • Trains and educates a diverse group of leaders;
    • Contributes to better decision making on issues affecting our multicultural society;
    • Fosters diversity among civic and business leaders.”
    The Benefits of Racial Diversity in Education Source: “Preserving Diversity in Higher Education: A Manual on Admissions Policies and Procedures After the University of Michigan Decisions.” Compiled by the firms of Bingham McCutcheon, Morrison & Foerster, and Heller Ehrman White & McAuliffe. Equal Justice Society, 2004. <www.equaljusticesociety.org/compliancemanual>
  • 14. True Integration
    • Creative and respective of inter-group relations based on mutuality, equality and fairness
    • Transformative rather than assimilative
    • Transforms and enriches the mainstream
    • (cf. desegregation, at best, attempts to assimilate “minorities” into the mainstream)
  • 15. Appendix: Parents Involved… the decision
    • Five different opinions
    • Majority of Court recognized a compelling government interest in remedying racial isolation, regardless of its cause.
    • Educational policymakers may use race-conscious policies. They may not classify people on the basis of race, except as a last resort.
    • Effects on school districts and our work