School desegregation in Prince Edward Schools

The purpose of this website is to study the history of school desegregation in Prince Edward Schools. The thesis covers the history and the present day demographics and household income to determine whether Prince Edward County School are still racially segregated today. The website seeks to answer the research question of if Prince Edward County public schools still racially segregated today?

History of School desegregation in Prince Edward Schools

The desegregation of Prince Edward County started with the court case of Davis v. County School Board of Prince Edward County. This case was included into the Brown v. Board of Education court case. The U.S. Supreme court case “outlawed official segregation in public schools.” [1]Bonastia, C. (2012). Southern Stalemate : Five Years without Public Education in Prince Edward County, Virginia. Chicago : The University of Chicago Press. p. 2 The Davis case was caused by students who were led by Barbara John during “the student walkout of 1951” [2]Bonastia, C. (2012). Southern Stalemate : Five Years without Public Education in Prince Edward County, Virginia. Chicago : The University of Chicago Press. p. 21 to protest unequal and poor conditions of their segregated school. The NAACP took over the students’ and “decided that it would no longer be pursue cases seeking equalization of facilities, instead turning its focus to suits seeking the abolition of public school segregation.” [3]Bonastia, C. (2012). Southern Stalemate : Five Years without Public Education in Prince Edward County, Virginia. Chicago : The University of Chicago Press. p. 28 The Davis case won in favor of the students’ petition to integrate schools and create equal school conditions.

Virginia General Assembly passed a list of laws to fight against school desegregation. These laws were passed to start the Massive Resistance, which allowed the Bryd Organization to not follow the Supreme court ruling in Brown v. Board of education to integrate schools. To avoid integrating schools, “white political leaders in the county formulated plans to close public schools, replacing them with private schools for whites.”[4]Bonastia, C. (2012). Southern Stalemate : Five Years without Public Education in Prince Edward County, Virginia. Chicago : The University of Chicago Press. p.18 This was done by giving grant tuition to only white students so that black students would not have the funds to attend such schools. Due to Brown ruling and changes in Virginia’s laws, Prince Edward County took away all funds that kept the Prince Edward County Public Schools open. Therefore, the public schools closed for five years.

The supreme court told the public schools to open in the ruling of Griffin v. School Board of Prince Edward County. The case ruled “that the county must allocate tax monies to operate public schools.” [5]Bonastia, C. (2012). Southern Stalemate : Five Years without Public Education in Prince Edward County, Virginia. Chicago : The University of Chicago Press. p. 6 It was established in this case that Prince Edward County’s attempts to not integrate schools violated the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment, which ended the Massive Resistance in Virginia and the schools reopened as integrated public schools.

References

References
1 Bonastia, C. (2012). Southern Stalemate : Five Years without Public Education in Prince Edward County, Virginia. Chicago : The University of Chicago Press. p. 2
2 Bonastia, C. (2012). Southern Stalemate : Five Years without Public Education in Prince Edward County, Virginia. Chicago : The University of Chicago Press. p. 21
3 Bonastia, C. (2012). Southern Stalemate : Five Years without Public Education in Prince Edward County, Virginia. Chicago : The University of Chicago Press. p. 28
4 Bonastia, C. (2012). Southern Stalemate : Five Years without Public Education in Prince Edward County, Virginia. Chicago : The University of Chicago Press. p.18
5 Bonastia, C. (2012). Southern Stalemate : Five Years without Public Education in Prince Edward County, Virginia. Chicago : The University of Chicago Press. p. 6