Unless our children begin to learn together there is little hope that our people will ever learn to live together. — Justice Thurgood Marshall
I agree more than ever with these wise words and yet my recent experiences as superintendent make me wonder whether we are any closer today to achieving this vision than we were in 1974, when Justice Marshall wrote them as part of a dissenting opinion over a school integration plan for Detroit.
I say this because even when efforts to increase the achievement of all students are effective and working, it’s simply too easy for school boards and other community leaders to work against the notion of all children learning together. I lived through such an experience and it has led me to support positions I would have dismissed a decade ago.