the 21-Day Racial Equity Challenge

day 14: education and school-aged children

We have already explored how segregation persists in our communities. Our economically and racially divided neighborhoods are leading to inequitable educational environments and adverse academic outcomes for our youth. In 1954, the United States Supreme Court’s decision in Brown v. Board of Education effectively dismantled the legacy of Jim Crow. The Justices ruled unanimously that racial segregation of children in public schools was unconstitutional. Unfortunately, progress is reversible. Even schools that were successfully desegregated are again racially segregated.

Today, more than half of the nation’s school-age children are in racially concentrated districts in which over 75% of students are of the same race, and districts are further segregated by income. Students of color, who are more likely to attend under-resourced schools than their white counterparts, suffer because of teachers working in under-resourced school environments and large class sizes, which when controlling for socioeconomic status, almost entirely explain disparities in academic achievement (Source).


  1. Read the Partnership for the Public Good’s report on Public Education in Buffalo and the Region. (7 minutes)
  2. Watch TED Talk “How America's Public Schools Keep Kids in Poverty.” (13 minutes)
  3. Read New America Weekly article “How to Bring Equity and Inclusion to the Classroom.” (4 minutes)


DAY 15: Immigrants and Refugees


Back to Day 13

Back to Pre-Challenge