I’ve had so many people telling me that pushing for school integration through parents is a losing battle — racism/classism notwithstanding, the segregation of our neighborhoods is always cited. Of course housing (and redlining etc) affects school segregation, but the desire for school segregation also created our housing segregation. With so many families in cities across the country moving into diverse neighborhoods (cough cough… gentrification), we can’t so easily dismiss school segregation as a housing problem…. And we can’t so easily throw up our hands and claim that the problem is too big for our little respective families to fight. Social justice starts at home — and in school.
“We’ve gotten used to explaining the segregation we see in our schools by pointing to the segregation we see in our neighborhoods. It seems pretty simple: Kids who don’t live in the same place aren’t likely to go to the same school.
But that explanation has it backwards. In many cities across the U.S., public schools were the first and nearly always the most effective of the tools white residents had to police the boundaries of their neighborhoods. Often, it was school segregation that created neighborhood segregation, not the other way around. ”