Type of paper: Essay

Topic: Students, Education, School, Success, America, Segregation, Race, Claim

Pages: 4

Words: 1100

Published: 2020/12/19


Education is one of the things other people cannot take away from someone. It is also seen as a weapon as stated by Nelson Mandela. He said that “Education is the most powerful weapon you can use to change the world” (qtd. in Brainy Quote). An easy access to education for everyone will make this happen but in a country where freedom is deemed important, it is ironic that the government is pressing on the ‘school resegregation’. In 1954, the decision about segregation in school was ordered. Segregation means the separation of colored students (Black- Americans, Mexicans, American Indians) from White students in school (Raffel 231). According to Raffel (231), segregation had decreased in the year in early 1970’s when the Civil Rights Act of 1964 was mandated; however, it continuously increases again, and ‘resegregation’ happened (231).


As cited by Denvir from Aljazeera.com, schools which cater to non-White students are often underfunded and lack adequate nurses, counselors, teachers as well as facilities such as books and computers. This clearly shows that schools which have Black-Americans, Latinos, and American Indians are not given attention by the government because they are non-Whites; thus, the students who are put in this type of school are all on the losing end. The lack of facilities will lead low academic achievement. This defeats the purpose of giving equal opportunity to all US citizens regardless of the color of their skin.

Opponent’s Claims

There were claims of studies that being desegregated from other races has no impact or relationship to the academic performance of students. They claim that whether colored races are segregated or desegregated, it has no bearing on their academic performance. Ikpa and McGuire ( 67) cited that from Narot’s study at the Harvard University’s National Opinion Research Paper, it was found out that in newly desegregated high schools in the south, the achievement scores are lower. In these schools, the African –Americans made up 20% of the student population. Furthermore, Ikpa and McGuire (67) indicated that based on the data retrieved in Equality of Educational Opportunity, it was found that the verbal achievement test scores of European American students decline as the number of African- Americans also increased.
Another claim was made by Willis Hawley that having a high academic achievement is less impact on or a weak relationship with having different races in school. From tolerance.org, Hawley discovered that there is a positive impact on the reading achievement of African-American students, but there is no effect on their math scores. Latinos are also included in the study, and they are among the most racially discriminated students in the United States. However, the studies found that there was no impact on their academic achievement whether they attended a segregated or a desegregated school. As shown in tolerance.org, there was a study that included fifty Mexican students who displayed all factors that will potentially predict school failure such as low income, parents without diplomas, and Spanish speaking households but were able to perform excellently in elite colleges and universities. Almost 70% of these students surprisingly studied in desegregated high schools, although they live in a segregated neighborhood. However, this relationship does not exist in Narot’s study when socioeconomic factors and the achievement were controlled (Ikpa and McGuire 67). Thus, a school which has more affluent students scores very high in academic achievement since they are able to have access to quality education.

Warrants for the Claim

Earlier, it was stated that being segregated from White students who are often in schools with good or complete facilities will make other colored races achieve low in academics. Putting them together in a school will improve their academic achievement. According to Palardy, Black-Americans and Latinos attended underfunded schools because of segregation (Palardy 2000). Palardy said that school segregation is more of a socioeconomic segregation since these colored races are considered poor; hence, they attend schools which are also poverty stricken in their place (2000).
According to Boger and Orfield schools with a high concentration of poverty offers less in educational resources such as preparation, outdated resources, fewer educational offerings, and lower overall achievements (248). From furmancenter.org, Kahlenberg explained that one of the factors that students in a socially and economically segregated school perform lower than students who are in advantaged schools is that there is an unequal access to the best teachers and resources. It was also emphasized by Kahlenberg that the teachers in middle-class schools are well-experienced and well-trained; hence, they can give the best teaching strategy for their students. Furthermore, furmanceter.org. stated that these teachers in the middle or upper class schools are specifically trained to teach their subject area as opposed to the teachers in high-poverty stricken schools. More specifically, the teachers in the latter become outfielders (i.e. teaching subjects they do not know). In sum, students of colored races suffer a lot because of the high-concentration of poverty in their schools.
In a study from psea.org, it stated that even if there are controlled variables to check the effects on the low achievement of students in schools, students assigned in an elementary school are likely to have lower test scores, lower averages, and lower placements in secondary schools (“Achievement is More Than Academic: Racial Segregation Among Schools”). Since a school is concentrated with poor colored races, they are not able to get support from each other because they are also preoccupied with their own problems at home. Moreover,psea.org emphasized that one of the benefits of an integrated or desegregated school is that students are able to develop critical thinking in a diverse learning environment (“Achievement is More Than Academic: Racial Segregation Among Schools”).

Common Grounds for the Writer’s Claim and the Opponent’s Claim

As shown in the opponent’s claim, there is no significant impact on the academic achievements of the students in segregated schools. The researchers who favor segregation pointed out that segregation should not always be blamed for the low academic performance of the students since they have tried to integrate these colored races in desegregated schools. However, one factor seen in this claim is that these students from low performing and underfunded schools were not given access to equal quality education. As explained earlier, access to good resources like facilities and good teachers are not all present in segregated schools. So even if these students are integrated in a school that caters to White students only, it will still not improve their academic performance because their foundation is weak. Only if desegregation is maintained will Black-Americans, Latinos, and other minority races be able to cope with the level of academic performance that students have in middle-class schools.

Works Cited

Brainy Quote. 9 March 2015. Web
Boger, John Charles and Gary Orfield. School Resegregation: Must South Turn Back? USA: The
Daniel, Denvir. “The Resegregation of America’s Schools”. America.aljazeera.com. 9 March
2015. Web
Ikpa, Vivian and C. Kent Mcguire. Narrowing the Achievement Gap in (Re)Segregated Urban
Kahlenberg, Richard. “Why Economic School Segregation Matters”. Furman.org. 14 March
2015. Web
Palardy, Gregory. “Does Segregation Matter? The Impact of Student Composition on Academic
Achievement in High School”. Teachers College Record 107.9 (2005): 1999-2045. Print
2015. Web. <https://www.psea.org>

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