When Thurgood Marshall walked through the doors of the U.S. Supreme Court in 1952 to challenge the doctrine of “separate but equal,” he knew that he was only focusing on one half of the problem. Marshall had spent his early years at the NAACP fighting for equal access to high-quality education in all-black and all-white schools alike. By the 1950’s the political winds had shifted enough to challenge legalized segregation, but there was a catch: equal education had to take a back seat.
On Saturday, the 60th anniversary of Marshall’s masterful victory in Brown v. Board of Education, we need to focus on the NAACP’s original, broader vision for schools that are both integrated and equal. I believe the new and much-discussed Common Core standards will move us toward that goal.
The above excerpt was originally published in USA Today.
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