Garrett Anstreicher, Jason Fletcher, Owen Thompson, 15 May 2022

Many US school districts are currently weighing policies to improve racial integration in public schools. This column outlines research evaluating the short and long-run effects of school desegregation on the lives of majority and minority students. New research examining the impact of court-ordered desegregation plans – implemented in hundreds of US school districts after 1960 – shows that early exposure to desegregated schools resulted in better academic and economic outcomes for Black children in the US South, but that Black children in the North showed little benefit from comparable integration initiatives.

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