Jim Crow is rearing its head again, eroding the gains of education parity in school rooms across the nation, according to the nation’s largest civil rights group.
The NAACP recently held its annual Daisy Bates Education Summit in Raleigh, N.C., and pointed to the county’s troubles over school diversity as an example of the retrenchment from the equity standards established by the seminal case Brown vs. Board of Education.
“Ending bussing to integrate schools and dwindling funding for public schools is the newest form of re-segregation,” stated NAACP President and CEO Benjamin Todd Jealous, who joined North Carolina State Conference President William Barber, Florida State Conference President Adora Obi-Nweze and other NAACP officials in a press conference to discuss the current state of schools in the state.
“All children of all backgrounds, of all races, colors and creeds deserve an accessible, high quality public education. School boards across this country are rolling the clock back to the time before Brown vs. The Board of Education and the NAACP will not continue to let this happen.”
Wake County, where Raleigh is located, gained national attention when its school board voted to end a 10-year policy of busing to foster socioeconomic balance in public schools. Advocates say the move is aligned with a 2007 Supreme Court decision, which found that school districts cannot use students’ race as basis for integration policies. And that’s what busing for diversity amounts to, according to Roger Clegg, president of the Falls Church, Va.-based Center for Equal Opportunity.
“Even if you think there’s something desirable about having a politically correct racial and ethnic mix, it doesn’t justify the enormous costs of engaging in racial discrimination,” he was quoted as saying in an Associated Press article.