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Changing Student Assignment Policies and Race/Class Segregation Trends: A Longitudinal Analysis, Wilmington/New Castle County, Delaware

Sat, April 14, 10:35am to 12:05pm, New York Hilton Midtown, Second Floor, Gibson Suite

Abstract

In 1975, a court-ordered busing program was launched to desegregate the schools of Wilmington/New Castle County, Delaware. It was one of the more significant and successful desegregation programs in the nation. In 1996, the desegregation order was lifted and in within five years the state enacted school choice and charter school legislation along with a policy supporting efforts to rezone attendance areas along the “neighborhood schools” principle. This study uses geographic, census, and enrollment data and policy information. It is a longitudinal case study of changes in policies and race/class segregation within a metropolitan region significant in school desegregation history. This analysis shows the degree of race/class segregation increases over 26 years and explains connections with policy decisions.

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