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"A Judge Finds New York Schools Separate and Unequal" Article from U.S. News and World Report

"A Judge Finds New York Schools Separate and Unequal" Article from U.S. News and World Report

The text of the U.S. News and World Report article, "A Judge Finds New York Schools Separate and Unequal." Judge Justine Wise Polier is pictured with the caption "The Constitution requires equality."

The text of the article reads as follows:
The biggest city in the nation still practices "de facto" segregation, still lacks "equality" in its public schools.
So says a court in New York, where two Negro students were withdrawn from all-colored schools because of "discrimination."
Conclusions of the judge: Discrimination exists. Many schools have over 85 per cent nonwhites, get less-qualified teachers.
A court in New York City now holds that this Northern metropolis is failing to provide for its Negro and Puerto Rican children the "equal" education that long has been required by the U.S. Supreme Court.
Discrimination in the quality of teaching staffs of New York schools is found to exist, in violation of the U.S. Constitution's requirement of "equality." The city's school board is blamed by the city court for not providing as large a proportion of qualified teachers for "colored" as for "white" schools.
The issue of racial discrimination in schools of a Northern city came up when parents withdrew two Negro children from New York City public schools, despite that city's compulsory-education law. The parents claimed their children's schools were inferior.
One of the pupils had attended a junior high school in which 1,560 pupils were Negroes, 25 were Puerto Ricans and none was white.
Large numbers of New York City schools were found to have either 85 per cent or more Negro and Puerto Rican pupils.
In its decision, the New York court found that separation of races persists in schools of the city. However, this separation, the court held, is voluntary and not the result of policies followed by the board of education.
Judge Justine Wise Polier of Children's Court Division of the Domestic Relations Court said in her opinion: "....The conclusion must be drawn that de facto racial segregation exists in the junior high schools of New York City."
Behind the failure. The judge found that failure to provide an equal education for pupils in schools wit a high proportion of Negro and Puerto Rican pupils was due to the failure of the board of education to assign enough fully qualified teachers to those schools.
Said Judge Polier: "Analysis of the data submitted on teacher assignment shows a city-wide pattern of discrimination against junior high schools with 85 per cent or more Negro and Puerto Rican students as compared with schools which have 85 per cent or more white students. A far greater percentage of positions in the schools with heavy Negro and Puerto Rican attendance were not filled by regularly licensed teachers."

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How to cite this page

Jewish Women's Archive. ""A Judge Finds New York Schools Separate and Unequal" Article from U.S. News and World Report." (Viewed on December 17, 2018) <>.


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