Equity & Diversity

Voices of History

May 13, 2014 1 min read
  • Save to favorites
  • Print

Six decades after the landmark U.S. Supreme Court decision in Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka, three people with unique experiences in fighting for integration and equality in public schools share their stories with Education Week.

John A. Stokes, plaintiff in Davis v. County School Board of Prince Edward County

“When the Supreme Court decision was rendered, I was in the army...The guys were screaming and hollering and jumping up and down and partying and everything, and they said, ‘Hey Stokes, you’re mighty quiet.’ I said, ‘the war has just begun fellas.’ I told them ‘Hell is going to break loose now.’ ”


Sylvia Mendez, plaintiff’s daughter in Mendez v. Westminster School District

“We would all be on the same bus, and they would drop us off in front of the white school; this beautiful, manicured-lawn school with palm trees and a wonderful playground right there in the front with swings. And then we had to walk to the Mexican school.”


Suzy Post, plaintiff in Newburg Area Council Inc. v. Board of Education of Jefferson County

“I just don’t think we ever, ever, ever as a community, stood up and said, ‘Alright, we’re going to have desegregated education. Integration is going to mean, this, this, this, and this, and we’re watching you, Board of Education. There are certain things we expect of you.’ ”

A version of this article appeared in the May 14, 2014 edition of Education Week

Events

This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Classroom Technology Webinar
Academic Integrity in the Age of Artificial Intelligence
As AI writing tools rapidly evolve, learn how to set standards and expectations for your students on their use.
Content provided by Turnitin
Recruitment & Retention Live Online Discussion A Seat at the Table: Chronic Teacher Shortage: Where Do We Go From Here?  
Join Peter DeWitt, Michael Fullan, and guests for expert insights into finding solutions for the teacher shortage.
This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Reading & Literacy Webinar
The Science of Reading: Tools to Build Reading Proficiency
The Science of Reading has taken education by storm. Learn how Dr. Miranda Blount transformed literacy instruction in her state.
Content provided by hand2mind

EdWeek Top School Jobs

Teacher Jobs
Search over ten thousand teaching jobs nationwide — elementary, middle, high school and more.
View Jobs
Principal Jobs
Find hundreds of jobs for principals, assistant principals, and other school leadership roles.
View Jobs
Administrator Jobs
Over a thousand district-level jobs: superintendents, directors, more.
View Jobs
Support Staff Jobs
Search thousands of jobs, from paraprofessionals to counselors and more.
View Jobs

Read Next

Equity & Diversity 5 Big Challenges for Schools in 2023
Book bans, teacher retention, climate change, and more.
3 min read
Image of a classroom.
tarras79/iStock/Getty
Equity & Diversity What Researchers Learned From Analyzing Decades of Civil Rights Complaints Against Schools
Large, segregated districts are more likely to have OCR complaints filed against them, a new report shows
4 min read
Image of papers on a desk.
smolaw11/iStock/Getty
Equity & Diversity Educators' Opposition to Censorship Comes at a Big Personal Cost
A Tennessee teacher and a Louisiana librarian discuss their very public battles against book bans or restrictions on teaching about racism.
5 min read
Social studies teacher Matthew Hawn, who is accused of insubordination and repeated unprofessional conduct for teaching about racism and white privilege, sits on his couch inside his home on August 17, 2021.
Tennessee social studies teacher Matthew Hawn, who is accused of insubordination and repeated unprofessional conduct for teaching about racism and white privilege, sits on his couch inside his home back in August of 2021.
Caitlin Penna for Education Week
Equity & Diversity Explainer School Dress Code Debates, Explained
What are they, who do they serve, and do they need to be changed?
6 min read
In this Sept. 7, 2018 photo, students socialize at Grant High School in Portland, Ore., after school let out. Portland Public Schools relaxed its dress code in 2016 after student complaints that the rules unfairly targeted female students and sexualized their fashion choices.
In this 2018 photo, students socialize at Grant High School in Portland, Ore., after school let out. Portland Public Schools relaxed its dress code in 2016 after student complaints that the rules unfairly targeted female students and sexualized their fashion choices.
Gillian Flaccus/AP