The St Louis Contrarian

Providing Independent and Intelligent Insight on St. Louis Public Policy Issues

Education and Racial Integration in Webster Groves

I live in Webster Groves as does my daughter, son in law, and 2 grandsons. The school district in the last year has made a controversial decision about neighborhood schools, racial integration, etc. The district is overcrowded and in need of a new school. What they did was repurpose a computer school and sixth grade center as a new k-6 elementary school. The building is located in a predominantly black and lower income neighborhood. Previously those students had been disbursed among the other elementary schools which all had a relative degree of integration. With the new school, Givens Elementary, most of the black students in the district will attend one schools, resulting in a school with about a 30% poverty rate and resulting lower test scores. The other schools will no longer be integrated.

I don’t know how this jibes with Brown v. Board of Education decision and various civil rights statutes. On the other hand , the black community like all communities wanted a neighborhood schools. I don’t have a good answer but I know concentrating all the poor kids in one school is not a good idea. Written by Paul Dribin


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