Monday, December 04, 2006

Desegregation/Integration Argued Before The Supreme Court Today

More than 50 years after Brown v. Board of Education ended racial segregation in our public schools, the Supreme Court today heard arguments from two school districts (in Seattle and Louisville) that want to assign students to schools based on race. On her own blog, Joanne (see blogroll at left) has a pithy comment for people who try to use Brown to justify such race-based assignments, which often include busing students to schools far from their homes in order to achieve some predetermined racial mix:

I thought Brown was about assigning black kids to their all-white neighborhood school instead of sending them across town because of their race. Silly me.

Hard to argue with that. She even gives an example of a school that works because of its homogenous student body:

My book, Our School, is about a San Jose charter school, Downtown College Prep, that’s 90 percent Mexican-American. The school recruits students who earned D’s and F’s in middle school — ninth graders average fifth-grade reading and math skills — and focuses intently on teaching them the basic and advanced skills they’ll need to succeed in college. The school works because it’s not diverse. Most students share a set of educational challenges, such as a limited English vocabulary. They buy into a single mission: Prepare for college.

Where are the diversityphiles screaming for more "diversity" at DCP? I wonder why they don't. No, actually I don't wonder; I already know why they don't. Think about it for a moment, and you'll know why, too.

And don't think I'm for changing the student body at DCP. I'm not. Joanne's correct that the school works because it's not diverse. I just want to point out that the lefties aren't crying to integrate this particular school, and the reason is telling. I wonder what would happen to a DCP-like school in Seattle or Louisville....

Joanne's on a roll in the post linked above:

In a court-ordered desegregation scheme starting in 1985, Kansas City schools received $2 billion over 12 years to create programs that would lure suburban whites into inner-city schools. Some of the money created a massive and hugely inefficient district bureaucracy, Miller writes. The rest paid for lavish physical facilities, thousands of computers and magnet programs designed with no regard for the interests or needs of urban black students. Teachers weren’t trained to develop courses for the special programs to which they were assigned. When the court ended the plan in 1997, the schools were more segregated than ever and test scores were just as low.

That’s what happens when getting the ideal racial mix becomes a higher priority than educating the students you’ve got.

We've really got to get back to that silly notion from the 60s, that phrase that recurs in the Civil Rights Act and the Voting Rights Act--a phrase that was a central tenet of Dr. King's philosophy--"without regard to race". That would lead to a "colorblind society", one where people are judged not by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character.

I'll sit back and let the lefties try to demonize me for believing what Dr. King actually said, for believing what the laws actually say, and not what the the lefties want Dr. King and the laws to have said.

Update: John at Discriminations (see blogroll at left) has the expected in-depth essay on this topic.


Anonymous said...

I listened to audio of the SCOTUS hearing on Hugh Hewitt on the way home. It was riveting! Alito and Roberts really grilled the Seattle attorney.

Thanks for providing more info on this very important case.

Big E said...

Amen. Let's get past the blunt tool of social engineering (race) and move on to figure out what kids need to learn.