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Making the Unequal MetropolisSchool Desegregation and Its Limits$
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Ansley T. Erickson

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780226025254

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: September 2016

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226025391.001.0001

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The Long Road to the End of Desegregation

The Long Road to the End of Desegregation

(p.278) Chapter Nine The Long Road to the End of Desegregation
Making the Unequal Metropolis

Ansley T. Erickson

University of Chicago Press

Local and national developments in the 1990s opened the way for Nashville to “get out from under” court supervision for desegregation. The Nashville school board and elite allies worked for years toward a joint application for “unitary status” and the end of court-supervised desegregation, granted in 1998. A new student assignment plan valued stability and schooling close to home, separated statistical desegregation from discussions educational equality, and promised to return white and middle-class families to the public schools. Despite immense investments of time and energy over the previous four decades, and the achievement of notable statistical desegregation, the core question of what desegregation could offer students or how it related to equality remained unanswered. As Nashville enjoyed a population boon and striking economic growth, its schools became majority-poor. Nashville closed the era of desegregation and opened a new phase of educational inequality.

Keywords:   inequality, desegregation, unitary status, immigration

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