An Increase in ‘Double Segregation’ in Schools Dims the Nation’s Future

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The Civil Rights Project released three new reports last week detailing the segregation that continues in America’s schools. The most troubling finding of the primary report, “E Pluribus … Separation: Deepening Double Segregation for More Students,” is the realization that “double segregation” — by both racial and income status — is growing. The practical result: Students of color increasingly attend more impoverished schools than their peers.

Overall, school diversity is increasing. In 1970, 80 percent of all American students were white, but by 2009 that proportion had decreased to just over half of all students. Yet according to “E Pluribus … Separation,” 43 percent of Latino students and 38 percent of African-American students across the country now attend schools with no more than 10 percent white students. Strikingly, the report asserts that “the typical black or Latino today attends school with almost double the share of low-income student in their schools than the typical white or Asian student.”

The two smaller reports that accompanied “E Pluribus … Separation” focus on Western states and Southern states, providing a detailed look at the current segregation situation in each respective region. The findings of racial and income segregation in these reports are similar to those in “E Pluribus … Separation.”

— Nicole Tortoriello