UCLA’s Civil Rights Project/Proyecto Derechos Civiles presents new national data on the current state of racial segregation and inequality in the U.S.
Desegregation efforts in the civil rights era significantly increased integration in the South between the 1960s and 1980s. Although many claim that segregation has gone back to pre-Brown levels, the report produced by UCLA’s Civil Rights Project/Proyecto Derechos Civiles provides a more nuanced look at segregation and suggests that regional context matters. According to the data presented in the report, the South is the least segregated region for black students and Latinos now outnumber black students, whereas segregation has soared in the West. The 30 percent drop in white students and dramatic increase in percentage of people of color has not translated to more integrated schools, however. The report suggest that there is a clear pattern developing, particularly in central cities in metropolitan areas, where black and Latinos are increasingly sharing the same schools characterized by large proportions of poor children. Ultimately, the authors recommend the following:
· substantial expansion of magnet school funding, strong civil rights policies for charter schools, serious incentives for regional collaboration, and teacher training for diverse and racially changing schools;
· the creation of a joint HUD, Justice Department, and Education Department staff assigned to work with experts outside government in devising a plan to support durable integration in communities and schools in the many racially changing suburbs, in gentrifying city neighborhoods, and in other locations; and
· the adoption of systems of assessment and rewards that would keep good teachers in low-income minority schools rather than drive them out.