The resegregation of public schools? Examining Parents Involved in practice
Keywords:federal courts, race, school desegregation, school resegregation, selective admission, student diversity
This study investigated the efficacy of race-neutral student assignment policies following the 2007 Supreme Court decision in Parents Involved. Highlighting one urban school district—Chicago Public Schools—we examined differences in racial composition at their elite, “selective enrollment” high schools before and after voluntary race-based policies became unconstitutional. Using repeated measures ANOVA, we found the transition from racial to socioeconomic criteria have resegregated these schools— significantly reducing African- and Asian-American enrollment. We argue the Supreme Court’s decision to strike down voluntary race-based student assignment policies has contributed to local policy changes for urban districts like Chicago, reducing minority access and opportunity.