04 Dec 2006 Project 21 Press Release: Black Conservative Speaks Out on Today’s Supreme Court’s Arguments Over Racial Quotas
The United States Supreme Court on Monday heard arguments regarding two cases that could decide the constitutionality of school desegregation policies. At issue is the legality of plans that limit the ability of public school students to attend the school of their choice so that schools meet government-mandated race-based admissions guidelines. A ruling, which could affect millions of students across the country, is expected by June of 2007.
“School admissions standards based on race and ethnicity are discriminatory. Resentment and anger stemming from government-enforced racial preferences only creates more racism,” said Deneen Moore, a full-time fellow with the Project 21 black leadership network.
In Seattle, racial preferences currently limit, by race, which students can enroll in particular high schools when space is limited. In Louisville, government-run schools for all grades must adhere to a racial formula that guarantees black students compose between 15 percent to 50 percent of a school’s enrollment. Both cases result in local students, usually white, having to travel outside of their normal district.
In late November, the federal U.S. Commission on Civil Rights issued a report that cited that “there is little evidence that racial and ethnic diversity in elementary and secondary schools results in significant improvements in academic performance,” and noted that any benefits are “modest and inconsistent.” Commission Chairman Gerald A. Reynolds further said: “In my view, the evidence suggests that these preferences do not provide significant academic benefits to minority children that would compensate for the moral costs of government’s use of racial classifications.”
“Not only is using racial preferences for admission unfair, but there is little data that shows racial mandates yield better education for minorities. If schools provided students with a quality education, admissions based on racial quotas would be non-existent,” added Moore.