The Cost of Brown

The Cost of Brown - T he Cost of Brown: Black Teachers and...

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The Cost of Brown: Black Teachers and School Integration by Adam Fairclough In North Carolina, African American schools that were forced to close or lost their identities when desegregation engulfed the South were mourned. They were once stigmatized as symbols of Jim Crow and educational failures. Now they are proud institutions that provided black communities with cohesion and leadership. According to the Brown ruling segregated schools generated feelings of inferiority in the children who attended them. Most graduates from African American schools say that their Black teachers helped compensate for the schools lack of materials. Students recalled feeling like they didn’t think of it as an inferior education. An organic community was formed between the teachers, pupils, and their parents, each sharing in a collective responsibility. Some blacks felt that integration undermined the black teachers position as a mentor, role model, and disciplinarian. Fariclough says that the postintegration literature must be treated with caution because the status of both black and white teachers is attributable to a variety of factors among which integration is relatively unimportant. Examples of this are the expansion of white-collared employment and changing attitudes toward professionals. Systematic discrimination has left many black teachers poorly trained. State-imposed segregation per se encouraged feelings of inferiority, they suggested that African American teachers often favored middle-class children and discriminated against those of darker complexion. Brown opened up new opportunities for black advancement and at the very least radically transformed an anchor of the southern black community. In 1875 members of the Gillfield Baptist Church argued that if whites justified
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The Cost of Brown - T he Cost of Brown: Black Teachers and...

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