As we reflect upon the sixtieth anniversary of Brown v. Board of Education, it is critical to not only assess policies advanced during the Obama administration that are aimed at reducing the continuing disparity for minority and economically disadvantaged students, but to also reflect upon what Secretary Duncan called the paradox of educational progress that continues to persist. Part II explores the effort to realize Brown’s promise of integration and equal educational opportunity. It describes a slow but significant history of gains, which has since been thwarted as Brown has been rendered doctrinally impotent. It then considers the relationship between Brown and Title I of the Elementary and Second Education Act (ESEA), and suggests ways to give new life to Brown’s promise of equal educational opportunity. Part III examines a recent effort by the Obama administration to increase educational opportunity for Title I schools that serve primarily economically disadvantaged and Black/Hispanic students through use of School Improvement Grants (SIG). It then outlines the eligibility requirements for Title I and Title I-eligible schools, mandated school improvement models for turnaround contingent upon SIG-funding, and new provisions for school leadership. Part IV considers the preliminary results associated with SIG grant-funding for Cohorts I and II, with a particular focus given to Cohorts I and II in the State of Ohio using data collected by the U.S. and Ohio Departments of Education. Finally, Part V concludes with a critique of the turnaround models attached to SIG grant funding and suggests a revised approach to school reform that would revitalize Brown’s promise of equal educational opportunity.
Natasha M. Wilson and Robert N. Strassfeld,
Turnaround in Reverse: Brown, School Improvement Grants, and the Legacy of Educational Opportunity,
63 Clev. St. L. Rev.
available at http://engagedscholarship.csuohio.edu/clevstlrev/vol63/iss2/8