Denver schools still segregated 60 years after Brown v. Board

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School segregation was supposed to end with a landmark Supreme Court decision marking its 60th anniversary May 17. The case was Brown versus the Board of Education of Topeka, Kansas.

The decision officially overturned the policy of separate but equal, but ethnicity and economics kept students divided in many cities, including Denver. By the 1970s another Supreme Court decision required Denver to integrate schools by busing students around the district. That program ended in the 1990s.

Today in Denver, schools are about as segregated as they were before the court-ordered busing. That’s according to Alan Gottlieb, a founder and editor of Chalkbeat, an education news website.

“I don’t know if you can say everything that happened during busing has been dismantled, but certainly what’s happened is a pretty massive re-segregation of the schools,” he said.

Listen to his conversation with CPR’s Mike Lamp on the eve of the 60th anniversary of Brown v. Board of Education.