Blog: Latino Ed Beat

Study: New York Schools Most Segregated in Nation

New York City may be renown as a melting pot, but a new study reveals that the city’s schools are not the picture of diversity.

The Civil Rights Project at UCLA released a report this week, ”New York State’s Extreme School Segregation: Inequality, Inaction and a Damaged Future,” examining segregation trends between 1989 and 2010. 

The report concludes that the state’s schools are “severely segregated” and are the most segregated in the nation. The report also found “double segregation” by both race and poverty.

“The children who most depend on the public schools for any chance in life are concentrated in schools struggling with all the dimensions of family and neighborhood poverty and isolation,” said the project’s co-director, Gary Orfield, according to Al Jazeera America.

The study found that as the proportion of Latino students increased, their exposure to white students decreased. At the same time, more black students are attending schools with Latino students.

According to the report, 19 of the 32 community school districts in New York City had enrollments that were less than 10 percent white in 2010. The study also called charter schools in the city “apartheid schools” because 73 percent have less than 1 percent white enrollment. Magnet schools were the most multiracial.

The report includes summaries of the largest metro areas in the state. It makes suggestions on how to remedy the situation, including having state and local education agencies develop policies that promote diverse schools. Magnet schools or transfer programs can also encourage diversity. School choice can also make an impact.