Other Free Encyclopedias » Law Library - American Law and Legal Information » Notable Trials and Court Cases - 1973 to 1980 » Keyes v. School District No. 1 - Significance, Schools In Transition, Mixed Legal Messages, Modification And Remand, Resolution, Impact

Keyes v. School District No. 1 - Schools In Transition

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Racial segregation had always existed in the Denver schools. Traditional housing patterns made segregation inevitable, since few Denver neighborhoods were racially integrated. School authorities exacerbated the situation by drawing school boundaries along racial lines in integrated neighborhoods such as Park Hill. Heightened public awareness of racial discrimination led to the creation of the Vorhees Special Study Committee on Equality in Educational Opportunity in the Denver Public Schools in 1962. The Vorhees Committee recommended that Denver's traditionally segregated school system be gradually integrated by the redrawing of school boundaries and other measures, and the school board resolved to put the committee's recommendations into practice. When it appeared that progress under the Vorhees Committee's recommendations was inadequate, a second study group, the Berge Committee, was formed in 1966. The Berge Committee recommended more fundamental action to redress segregation in the Denver Public Schools, and in 1968 the school board directed the superintendent of schools to prepare a comprehensive desegregation plan. In April of 1969 the school board approved the superintendent's plan to integrate the Denver Public Schools, which included busing of some students to ensure racial diversity throughout the school system. Forced busing became the central issue in the citywide school board election of May of 1969, in which a record number of voters turned out to defeat incumbent board members favoring the superintendent's plan. In June of 1969 the new school board voted to scrap the desegregation plan proposed by the superintendent, replacing it with a voluntary program.

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