Denver School Board Votes To Seek Unitary Status

Article Tools
  • PrintPrinter-Friendly
  • EmailEmail Article
  • ReprintReprints
  • CommentsComments

Denver school officials said they planned to file a motion late last week seeking to end federal court supervision of the district's 22-year old desegregation effort.

The Denver school board decided last month to seek an end to the long-running desegregation case, Keyes v. School District No. 1.

"We believe we have met the orders of the court," said Dorothy Gottlieb, the board's president, last month.

Superintendent Evie Dennis said papers were to be filed in U.S. District Court in Denver last Friday.

However, the board's decision to seek unitary status comes at a time when Hispanic and black leaders in the city have been negotiating to come to terms on a settlement to the desegregation lawsuit, which was filed in 1969. (See Education Week, Dec. 11, 1991.)

A meeting was scheduled for last Friday that was to include representatives of all parties in the case-blacks, Hispanics, and the school district, said Gordon G. Greiner, the lawyer for the black plaintiffs.

The groups planned to try to agree on what steps would need to be taken in order to settle the suit, he said.

Ken Salazar, the executive director of the state's natural resources department and a Hispanic leader, said the school board has not "foreclosed the possibility of negotiating at the same time they file this motion. It is still our hope the board will sit down at the table."

"We think the court is going to need some assurance on what we will do to maintain the same level of integration in Denver," Mr. Salazar added. "I think we can accept less busing, but we need some kind of plan to keep from resegregating."

No Immediate End to Busing

Denver officials stressed that being freed from their court order would not result in an immediate end to the busing of students for integration, and they vowed to keep schools from becoming resegregated.

For example, magnet schools would remain an important part of the school system and neighborhood schools would not be allowed to end busing for racial balance without plans to avoid resegregation.

"We are not to going to return to the way we were when we were first sued," Ms. Dennis said in an interview.

The Denver case was the impetus for a landmark 1973 U.S. Supreme Court decision that upheld federal court remedies for districts where state law had not historically required school segregation by race. The ruling opened the door to court supervised desegregation in many Northern cities.

The extensive use of cross-city busing in the Denver desegregation plan has been a long-running issue there and is said to have contributed to a loss in the city's middle-class population over the last 15 years.

Wellington Webb, the city's first black mayor, was elected last year on a platform that included a call to end court-supervised busing for desegregation.

Vol. 11, Issue 20, Page 5

Published in Print: February 5, 1992, as Denver School Board Votes To Seek Unitary Status
Notice: We recently upgraded our comments. (Learn more here.) If you are logged in as a subscriber or registered user and already have a Display Name on, you can post comments. If you do not already have a Display Name, please create one here.
Ground Rules for Posting
We encourage lively debate, but please be respectful of others. Profanity and personal attacks are prohibited. By commenting, you are agreeing to abide by our user agreement.
All comments are public.

Back to Top Back to Top

Most Popular Stories





Sponsor Insights

Free Ebook: How to Implement a Coding Program in Schools

Successful Intervention Builds Student Success

Effective Ways to Support Students with Dyslexia

Stop cobbling together your EdTech

Integrate Science and ELA with Informational Text

Can self-efficacy impact growth for ELLs?

Disruptive Tech Integration for Meaningful Learning

Building Community for Social Good

5 Resources on the Power of Interoperability from Unified Edtech

New campaign for UN World Teachers Day

5 Game-Changers in Today’s Digital Learning Platforms

Hiding in Plain Sight - 7 Common Signs of Dyslexia in the Classroom

The research: Reading Benchmark Assessments

Shifting Mindsets: A Guide for Training Paraeducators to Think Differently About Challenging Behavior

All Students Are Language Learners: The Imagine Learning Language Advantage™

Shifting Mindsets: A Guide for Training Paraeducators to Think Differently About Challenging Behavior

How to Support All Students with Equitable Pathways

2019 K-12 Digital Content Report

3-D Learning & Assessment for K–5 Science

Climate Change, LGBTQ Issues, Politics & Race: Instructional Materials for Teaching Complex Topics

Closing the Science Achievement Gap

Evidence-based Coaching: Key Driver(s) of Scalable Improvement District-Wide

Advancing Literacy with Large Print

Research Sheds New Light on the Reading Brain

Tips for Supporting English Learners Through Personalized Approaches

Response to Intervention Centered on Student Learning

The Nonnegotiable Attributes of Effective Feedback

SEE MORE Insights >