Louisiana School District Successfully Desegregated after 43 Years
It took more than 40 years, but a school district in northeastern Louisiana has finally desegregated itself.
The West Carroll Parish School District, which includes eight schools, has been the subject of multiple federal court actions since the 1960s seeking to integrate black and white students.
In 1969, the federal government first ordered district officials to dismantle the existing duel school system. Seven years later, segregated schools still existed, prompting a court order in 1976.
The courts had to step in again in 1991 and 2007 after it was determined that some of the West Carroll schools were still segregated.
This week, U.S. District Judge Robert James issued a consent decree that said all eight schools were finally integrated, in terms of population. But issues still remain, such as fixing the imbalanced system of discipline.
“For example, 78.9% of the students who received detention at Oak Grove Elementary School were African-American despite the fact that African-American students comprised only 21.2% of the enrollment at the school,” James wrote in his consent order.
To Learn More:
Louisiana School District Declared Desegregated (by Sabrina Canfield, Courthouse News Service)
United States v. West Carroll Parish School Board (U.S. District Court, Western Louisiana) (pdf)
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