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 school desegregation 
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I thought the movie about the Boston school system's desegregation was interesting. Did any of you have experiences with forced integration?

I wrote a paper on Charlotte-Mecklenburg desegregation, and found out that a delegation of CMS students visited Boston during this time as ambassadors from a school system that made bussing work. For the paper, I interviewed several family members who went to school during forced bussing. My mom told about how she was supposed to transfer to a different high school in 11th grade, but attended her old school for a month before she was caught; she said that having to go to the other school was traumatizing for her. My aunt described racial fighting in the hallways, and my dad recalled experiences with race riots. My boyfriend talked about his 2 hour bus ride to and from school in 4th through 6th grade. But surprisingly, all of them had positive things to say about bussing. I think most people came to value the diversity they were exposed to and the positive effect it had on the community.

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Maggie Chambers

Education is what survives when what has been learned has been forgotten. ~ B. F. Skinner


Wed Feb 15, 2006 8:46 pm
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Maggie, your paper sounds like it is very interesting. I know they still do some type of bussing in Charlotte, but since I didn't go to school with it I am not familiar with it. How do they treat bussing for CMS schools and does it have a lot to do with race? Just wondering...

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Jordan Will


Wed Feb 15, 2006 11:08 pm
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Busing began in 1970 and lasted until 1999, both times as mandated by the courts. At first, schools had to maintain a ratio close to 60% white, 40% nonwhite, which reflected the school system's racial makeup. Magnet schools were introduced in the 1990s. They specialize in a certain area, such as math, IB, foreign language, etc. Students from any area can apply to their program. They were used to attract white students to voluntarily go to schools in black neighborhoods that were a long distance away.

The superintendent/school board haven't come up with a consistent school assignment plan to replace busing. In the last few years I was in school, there was a "choice plan" in which you had a zone of schools you could chose from. You were guaranteed a spot at your "home school", or you could apply for a spot in the lottery to try to get into another school. Now they seem to be using a feeder school system, with some flexibility in it.

Keep in mind, Charlotte-Mecklenburg has over 140 public schools in the system.

Here's a great article about Charlotte and busing: http://www.slate.com/id/35218/

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Maggie Chambers

Education is what survives when what has been learned has been forgotten. ~ B. F. Skinner


Thu Feb 16, 2006 6:13 pm
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