The Legacy of Brown v. Board of Education

The Legacy of Brown v. Board of Education

This week marks the 60th anniversary of Brown v. Board of Education, the landmark U.S. Supreme Court ruling that declared segregated schools unconstitutional. While Brown represents a turning point in our country's history of racial inequality, many civil-rights advocates argue that the ruling's promise has not been fulfilled. They point to growing examples of racially isolated schools (often as a result of court-ordered releases from desegregation rulings), as well as persistent racial achievement and resource-equity gaps throughout the country.

As a teacher, what are your thoughts and emotions on the anniversary of Brown? Are school systems in your district and state resegregating? If so, what effects does this have on equity and achievement? What are the biggest issues facing students of color and their teachers? What recommendations would you make to policymakers and education leaders on fulfilling the legacy of Brown?

While educators can't change school demographics, says Valerie Brown, there are some things we can do to help students of color close the achievement gap.


Marilyn Rhames asks why, if Brown was supposed to desegregate schools, she never got to see the benefit.


On the anniversary of the Brown decision, teacher Scarlett Gaddy longs for a time when educators can concentrate on each child's progress, regardless of his or her race.


American education missed a great opportunity for genuine racial reconciliation after the Brown decision, teacher Renee Moore says, but it's never too late to do the right thing.


The opinions expressed in Teaching Ahead: A Roundtable are strictly those of the author(s) and do not reflect the opinions or endorsement of Editorial Projects in Education, or any of its publications.

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