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Progressing Backward: The Re-Opening of Swann v. Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools

Katherine Chamblee '07

When Darius Swann first filed suit against the Charlotte-Mecklenburg School System in 1965, he intended primarily to secure a place for his six-year old son, James Swann, at Seversville Elementary, a nearby integrated school, as opposed to Biddleville, an all-black elementary school farther from his home. Once adopted by lawyer and local civil rights activist Julius Chambers in 1971, however, Swann's suit was escalated to a landmark Supreme Court decision that would reshape school desegregation practices both in Charlotte and nationwide. Indeed, Swann v. Charlotte-Mecklenburg Board of Education[i] provided the legal impetus that transformed desegregation from a post-Brown potentiality to a concrete and court-mandated reality. According to the Swann ruling, if this desegregation necessitated gerrymandered school districts, quotas and busing, then these were precisely the measures that should and must be taken in the Charlotte-Mecklenburg (CMS) School System. Seemingly miraculously, despite a high current of polite dissent among local parents and community leaders, when the buses began to roll in Charlotte, they did so relatively peacefully. Slowly but surely, Charlotte developed a national reputation that defied the violent mobs that accompanied integration in Little Rock, Arkansas, the stones pelted at the mandated buses in Boston. Charlotte, it seemed, was a truly progressive Southern city, worthy of its earned moniker as "the city that made it work."

Thus, when parent Bill Cappacchione initiated a law suit that led to the re-opening and ultimate reversal of the Swann case in 1999, his (mostly white) supporters hailed the halt of buses as a beacon of Charlotte's success. The progressive city had progressed far enough; forced integration could now give way to the voluntary integration that would surely be possible in the city where buses had rolled relatively peacefully for the past thirty years. What supporters of the reversal of the Swann decision failed to mention, however, was that although busing had been peaceful, it was by no means enthusiastic. No white parents blocked the doors of local high schools in that Fall of 1971, but so many of them boycotted CMS that in the first five years of post-Swann integration, students estimated to have been lost to "white flight" numbered as high as ten thousand.[ii] More unsettling is that in the thirty-year span of mandatory integration, expectations were not always honored. High-minority schools remained in disrepair while new, primarily white schools cropped up in the growing suburbs. African-American students and working class white students bore the brunt of long bus rides, while students in the wealthier regions of southeast Charlotte generally remained at neighborhood schools. The victory for civil rights declared by Cappacchione and his supporters in 1999 could thus perhaps be described in terms of what historian William H. Chafe calls the "progressive mystique." According to Chafe, the "progressive mystique" is a set of rules that govern "political etiquette and discourse." First, this policy requires an ostensible openness to discussion—since, in Chafe's words, failure to consider the ideas of others would be "impolite." However, this dialogue is framed under the "presumption that the current state of things is sufficiently good that only when everyone agrees that change is necessary should change occur...Consensus...thus becomes a political prerequisite for reform, automatically ruling out any change that would involve conflict or significant division." Chafe goes on to conclude that changes that occur within this system ultimately leave the general power relations in place, having suffered only a "tweaked framework.[iii]" Indeed, because changes occur within the structure of these power relations, they often reinforce the integrity of extant power systems by operating consistently within their traditional bounds. While it may seem that the reopening of Swann featured a drastic revamp of a status quo (mandatory integration) that had existed for the past thirty years, a more realistic assessment is perhaps that the pre-Swann status quo never truly changed. While vast improvements were made, they were made within the framework of existing power relations. White southeast Charlotte remained wealthy, while the African-American dominated inner-city maintained high poverty rates; in both regions, local schools followed suit. Busing decisions were still made to accommodate the wealthier southeast, reinforcing the past hierarchical prioritization of race and class. Thus, employing Chafe's "progressive mystique," it was with a language of progress that Charlotte reverted to the pre-Swann status quo that had underwritten the integration system throughout its tenure in the city.

Although Brown v. Board of Education[iv] declared school segregation unconstitutional, in the decade that followed the ruling, many school systems across the country still practiced only de jure desegregation; in other words, segregation had been eliminated from the law, but persisted in the schools. Neighborhood school choice plans, while theoretically allowing African-Americans the option of attending majority-white schools and vice versa, typically maintained schools whose demographics reflected the homogenous neighborhoods in which they were located. De facto desegregation, which would require actual integration across the school districts, was mandated in the 1968 decision Green v. New Kent County.[v] Judges ruled that within New Kent County, a residentially segregated region in rural Virginia, "schools had an affirmative eliminate the historic patterns of segregation 'root and branch.[vi]'" Under this "root and branch" clause, non-discrimination was replaced by a proactive demand for racial balance. It was within this context that Darius Swann and civil rights lawyer Julius Chambers filed suit against the Charlotte Mecklenburg School System on January 19, 1965. Chambers argued that the school district's geographic zones had been grafted onto segregation housing patterns that existed primarily as relics of state enforcement, citing the relocation of blacks displaced by urban renewal into all-black neighborhoods and the construction of all-black public housing in those same neighborhoods. Further, Chambers claimed that a number of "dual" (segregated) school zones still existed, that the school board permitted transfers out of integrated schools while discouraging those wishing to transfer into them (i.e. James Swann), and that most school faculties were still completely segregated. On April 23, 1969, Judge James B. McMillan not only validated Chambers' claims, but permitted the use of busing in the process of desegregation, declaring that there was "no reason except emotion...why school buses can not be used by the Board to provide the flexibility and economy necessary to desegregate the schools.[vii]" Appealed by then school board chair William Poe, a vehement proponent of neighborhood schools, McMillan's ruling was finally upheld by the U.S. Supreme Court on April 20, 1971 in a decision that validated the use of racial quotas, gerrymandered school districts and busing for the purposes of integration. Within months, plans in over forty Southern school districts were based on Swann.[viii]

While the subsequent (ostensible) success of the busing program in Charlotte earned the city its reputation for interracial civility, it may have been the district's unique layout, as opposed to a uniquely progressive people, that allowed CMS to circumvent many of the problems that blighted busing programs in other districts. According to Gary Orfield and Susan E. Eaton of the Harvard Project on School Desegregation, the 1960 arrangement that consolidated Charlotte's urban center with its suburban outskirts as a single, metropolitan school district "meant that desegregation would not be threatened by white flight from the city [to the suburbs].[ix]" While whites could and often did flee to area private schools, unlike in other school districts, the suburbs did not have school systems separate from the urban center. When flight options are fewer, it certainly follows that white flight itself would be less frequent than it might have been in other circumstances. Charlotte's reputation for progress was also fueled by a highly publicized partnership with students in Boston, where busing was inciting a markedly violent reaction. Tina Gouge, a junior at the predominantly African-American West Charlotte High School, led nine fellow students in writing letters to their Boston counterparts, all of which were printed in the Boston Globe. As journalist Frye Galliard purports, Gouge's initiative successfully courted national sympathies not only due to her genuine display of concern for her peers, but because "it was man-bites-dog: students from the South, where the morality play of race had so long dominated the national headlines, setting an example for their counterparts in the liberal northeast.[x]" It was perhaps with reminiscence of this gleaming example that the Boston Globe reported on the re-opening of Swann with relative surprise in light of Charlotte's progressive reputation. The reporter notes, "Charlotte is an usual setting for such a suit at this time," continuing to recall Charlotte's past as home of the landmark case that "led to widespread busing in this city [Boston] and across the nation.[xi]"

The shift to anti-busing sentiment in Charlotte, however, is not as sudden as the Boston Globe suggests. As busing proceeded in Charlotte, national sentiment against state-regulated integration was steadily escalating, hinged on the growing conviction that we had progressed beyond the need for state intervention. To oppose mandatory busing was to claim an attained status of equality and civility that made government intervention in racial interactions not only an unnecessary frivolity, but a patronizing, invasive, and thus condemnable practice. Even when the Swann ruling was issued, it was not reflective of a national consensus on the benefits of busing any more than it was reflective of a consensus on integration within the city of Charlotte. In March, 1972, President Richard Nixon called for a moratorium on busing, a move posited by many as part of a "southern strategy" designed to win votes by appealing to suburban southerners on issues of race.[xii] In the late 1980's, the Reagan administration perpetuated attacks on busing, encouraging instead a shift to voluntary desegregation. During an October 8, 1964 speech in North Carolina, Reagan criticized Democrats for their support of "busing that takes innocent children out of the neighborhood school and makes them pawns in a social experiment that nobody wants.[xiii]" Such sentiments were manifested in Supreme Court cases in the early 1990's. In January 1991, Oklahoma City v. Dowell[xiv] ruled that federal court orders to desegregate school systems were "not intended to operate in perpetuity.[xv]" In other words, once school systems were declared "unitary," or desegregated, they had the right to return to neighborhood schools. The subsequent 1992 Freeman v. Pitts[xvi] ruling created more breathing room for school systems attempting to obtain said unitary status by declaring that "while racial balance must be achieved when a constitutional violation was its cause, demographic changes, even in a district under court order, did not necessitate consistent plan modifications.[xvii]" While both decisions technically condone a reversion to the pre-Swann status quo of neighborhood schools, the enforcement of each ruling ostensibly comes as a product of distinct and demonstrated progress. Such rulings deem these single-generation busing systems sufficient palliatives for long-standing structures of racial discrimination. Busing is a temporary evil with a decidedly teleological aim: the day that racial equality can be marked "mission accomplished," allowing districts to return to "freedom of choice" plans based on neighborhood schools. Busing, viewed from the lens of such decisions, might thus be compared to a pair of crutches. While the crutches may be useful for a time, it is the elimination of the crutches that marks progression. It is with this logic that a return to the status quo can be hailed as a step forward. 

When William Cappacchione filed suit against CMS because his daughter had been denied admission to her first choice elementary school, presumably because of racial quotas, he thus framed his complaint as a cry for progress. Assuming an equal playing field across racial lines, Cappacchione claimed that his daughter Cristina had been denied admission because of her race, in violation of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the 14th Amendment. Cappacchione secured legal support from an organization that fittingly invoked Cappacchione's own progressive rhetoric, the Houston-based Campaign for a Color-Blind America, which claimed that its mission was "to challenge race-based public policies and educate the public about the injustices of racial preferences.[xviii]" In consistent fashion, when asked by a reporter about his motivation for the suit, Cappacchione proclaimed: "We feel she [Cristina] was discriminated against because of the color of her skin.[xix]" Cappacchione was ultimately joined in his suit by six other white Mecklenburg county parents. Meanwhile, at the urging of the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Ferguson Stein, the law firm that represented the black families of the original Swann case, courts placed the Cappacchione suit under a re-opened Swann. Two African-American parents then joined the case on the side of Ferguson Stein. While the firm was pleased in their success at attaching the Cappacchione litigation to Swann, they were less optimistic about Judge Robert Potter, to whom the litigation had been assigned. Potter was not only a conservative Republican, but had been active in Charlotte's anti-busing movement in the 1970's, and was a Reagan appointee, all compounded by the fact that one of the white plaintiffs had served as Potter's law clerk.

Because the white plaintiffs' mandate to end busing was contingent on a declaration of successful desegregation, the Charlotte-Mecklenburg school board ironically had to persuade the courts of its failure at progress in order to save its integration plan. In legal terms, CMS had to declare itself not unitary. The movement to do so was initially proposed by African-American board member Wilhemenia Rembert, who said of her decision: "I introduced the motion because...the schools in the system were simply not equal. Those schools with African-American students still did not have up to date facilities, and [African-American students] were always placed in older schools. There were special programs at suburban schools that were not at schools with African-American students. The teachers with the best qualifications were at suburban schools.[xx]" The motion to declare CMS not unitary passed on the school board in a 6-3 decision, the three dissenters being white board members Lindalyn Kakadelis, John Lassiter, and Jim Puckett, the latter two of wealthy southeast Charlotte.[xxi] When the trial began on April 19, 1999, CMS embarked on an extensive campaign to prove its own failings. The result was the revelation that the desegregation plan in "the city that made it work" had a number of components that didn't seem to be working at all, calling into question the extent to which CMS desegregation policies had led to any more than a superficial re-ordering of the pre-Swann status quo. 

A prevailing argument made by Franklin Stein and CMS was that the busing system itself, while purported to intend equality between the races, privileged white students in wealthy suburban neighborhoods over African-American students concentrated in high-poverty areas of the city. In 1991, a total of 2, 562 African-American elementary school students—approximately 15 percent—were bused outside of their neighborhoods throughout grades K-12, while only 293 white students—less than one percent—were bused outside of their neighborhoods for elementary school.[xxii] Likewise, many argued that the CMS policy of school pairings negatively targeted African-American children. In the school pairings system, a high-minority urban elementary school would typically be paired with a mostly white elementary suburban school. In almost all cases, African-American students would be bused to the suburban school for grades K-3, while white students were bused in grades 4-6. Thus, the burden of long bus rides was consistently placed on the younger black children. Such inequities are exemplified in the case of Crestdale Middle School in Matthews, a wealthy suburb of the Charlotte metropolitan area. The land intended for Crestdale was bought at a particularly high price by the school board in the early 1990's, primarily because it was next to a major thoroughfare, which would make it easier to bus African-American students to the school from a "satellite" attendance area. Original plans for the school envisioned a 35% African-American student population at Crestdale, resulting in a close approximation of the 60/40 racial distribution of students within the district. However, when Superintendent Eric Smith opened the official plan for the school, all attendance zones were in predominately white neighborhoods. Instead of the planned satellite, Smith set aside100 seats for a voluntary transfer program for students of color residing elsewhere in the county. As a result, Crestdale opened in 1998 with an African-American population of only 16 percent, a blatant violation of CMS's own guidelines for racial balance.[xxiii] Indeed, the situation at Crestdale supports the perspective of Robert Pratt who claims that Charlotte's desegregation plan relied on a "tokenism" that shipped just enough African-Americans to white schools to escape negative attention.[xxiv] When in search of white students to serve as "token" members of urban schools, CMS planners turned to working class white neighborhoods in North and West Charlotte, rather than drawing from the vast pool of white students in the upper class suburbs of the southeast. In fact, Galliard insists that throughout the 30-year history of Charlotte busing, "never, or almost never" were the students of the "affluent southeast" reassigned.[xxv]

The most blatant violations of desegregation policies, however, involved the construction of new schools. As CMS officials and the black plaintiffs noted, twenty-seven of the twenty-nine schools opened in district in the past twenty years were located in predominately white areas, most of which were also outlying suburbs In doing so, CMS had ignored "its own policies, the recommendations of planners, McMillan's orders and the fact that African American students accounted for approximately 55 percent of the increase in CMS' total enrollment during these years[xxvi]" Often times, CMS' willingness to violate its own standards was connected to the influence of local developers who hoped to raise property values by locating new schools in recently constructed neighborhoods in Charlotte suburbs. The influential Harris Group proposed such an arrangement by offering to donate a large tract of land in Ballantyne, a wealthy new residential development, to the school board. Many desegregation advocates suggested that the school board use the offer as leverage to require developers to build more mixed-income housing that would encourage desegregation. School board member Louise Woods meanwhile recommended that the school board postpone voting on whether to accept the donation until they had the chance to meet with developers to negotiate such mixed-income housing. Instead, the schoolboard voted 5-4 to accept the land, and opened a school in 1999 with a scanty 2 percent African-American population. According to Political Scientist Stephen Samuel Smith, "the board's willingness to violate [its own rules] exacerbated sentiments that special treatment was still accorded southeast Charlotte, especially when the issue concerned a developer...well known for political clout.[xxvii]" CMS, undaunted by its own standards, continued to violate integration policies by building Butler High School in 1997, which was built in a Charlotte suburb one-quarter mile from the county line, forcing extremely long bus rides on African-American students.[xxviii] In the same year, the school board approved the opening of IBM-funded Vance High School, which drained the predominately-black West Charlotte High School of the white neighborhoods it needed to fulfill its racial quotas.[xxix]

While CMS and the black plaintiffs cited the above examples as causes of the steadily increasing racial imbalance in district schools, the white plaintiffs, joined by school board members Kakadelis, Lassiter and Puckett, claimed that such changes were the result of demographic change over which CMS had no control. Thus, such imbalances could not be vestiges of a dual system, leaving CMS free from legal responsibility as per Freeman v. Pitts. Citing the influx throughout the 1990's of businesspeople and developers to Charlotte, the white plaintiffs, supported by hired demographers, claimed that the disproportionate outcropping of predominately white suburban schools was simply a result of the sudden droves of white suburbanites. CMS and the black plaintiffs, however, disagreed. According to trend, most districts that experience desegregation in schools also experience residential desegregation over the same time period. Indeed, the index of dissimilarity in Charlotte, a number representing the fraction of residents that would have to be reassigned to achieve perfect integration, demonstrates increased residential integration post-Swann. In 1970, Charlotte's index of dissimilarity was 0.69, whereas in 1990, it had fallen to 0.61.[xxx] How, then, countered CMS and the black plaintiffs, "could demographic change explain the increase in racial imbalance over the past thirty years when the evidence...showed that residential segregation had declined over this period?[xxxi]"

When the white plaintiffs addressed the issues raised by CMS about the exceptionalism applied to white southeast Charlotte, inequities were represented not as evidence of discrimination, but as wise precautions against white flight and loss of the support of the wealthy white community. Busing students from North and West Charlotte, then, was also wise, as working class white families were less willing to pay extra money for private schools. In fact, claimed the plaintiffs, desegregation plans could actually exacerbate residential segregation, and are thus often self-defeating. In Forced Justice, Public Policy expert David Armor—who was incidentally called as an expert witness for the white plaintiffs—enumerates this position: "In claiming that racial balance formulas and cross-district busing were reasonable and feasible remedies, [school officials] clearly did not examine the possibility that opposition to such policies could...create resegregation...between public and private schools.[xxxii]"

The white plaintiffs also generally dismissed the outpouring of discouraging evidence from CMS and the black plaintiffs as a pitiful defense based on an assertion of failure, a striking contrast to their own claimed ambitions of progress, equality and race-neutrality. School board member Jim Puckett, a dissenter in the board's decision to declare itself not unitary, called the defense "asinine," and "an affront to a progressive city[xxxiii]" in a June 28, 1999 Boston Globe article on the case. Puckett's other statements in the article, in true form, invoked the language of progress. Puckett insisted that the reversal of Swann would confirm, not undermine, Charlotte's status as a progressive city, and that the elimination of racial guidelines for school assignment was not a step backward toward resegregation, but rather a step forward toward a race-neutral utopia: "Charlotte was very proud, and rightly so, that we were the one place in the country that could desegregate its schools peacefully...But we're the first place in America today that can take the next step...We can now go and close the educational gap in a colorblind way.[xxxiv]" While Puckett's readiness to declare all healed and assume away residual structures of the recent past may seem reckless, it nevertheless provided him with an advantageous political position counter to CMS and the black plaintiffs. The reckless optimist who claims to look to the future can easily portray a defense like the one presented by CMS as backward-looking and cynical. In both the public arena and in the media, even the most potent and convincing claims made by CMS were undermined by their oft-repeated tag as a "doofus defense." Above all, the white plaintiffs insisted again and again that this was not an issue of race. They thus pegged those who invoked race in their discussions as paranoid whistle-blowers. In an interview with the Charlotte Observer, board member Lindalyn Kakadelis, who dissented in the declaration of non unitary status, claimed that nobody wanted unequal schools but that "psychologically, people feel that could be a possibility.[xxxv]" For Kakadelis, then, board members like Wilhemenia Rembert, who proclaimed that this case "may have been about the education of some suburban white children, whose parents didn't want them educated in the company of black children in general and poor black children in particular[xxxvi]" were simply mistaken. To Kakadelis, the racism that Rembert perceived was purely "psychological."

In September 1999, Judge Robert Potter affirmed almost every claim made by the white plaintiffs. Deeming the standards used by CMS to measure racial imbalance "somewhat hazy,[xxxvii]" Potter declared CMS unitary, and prohibited the school system from taking race into account in student assignments or in the allocation of educational opportunities and benefits. As the school board filed an appeal on Judge Potter's decision, Superintendent Eric Smith and board members alike struggled to develop a viable reassignment plan for the fall. Smith's final plan divided CMS into five zones, within which students could enter lotteries for their first choice schools. Meanwhile, each student would be guaranteed a spot at a "home" school nearby. However, the geographic division of the district would mean that some students would not be able to choose schools that did not have high-poverty rates, while others were surrounded overwhelmingly by predominately-white schools. While activist groups including the League of Women Voters, the NAACP and the local Interfaith Committee for Fairness in Public Education urged Smith to put a ceiling on the number of students within a school that were receiving a free lunch, Smith refused to do so, claiming that it would too closely recall prior desegregation procedures. CMS eventually negotiated with Smith to divide the district into four zones instead of five to reduce poverty inequalities. In November, 2000, however, a three-judge panel on the Fourth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals declared that Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools had not, in fact, achieved unitary status. The judges cited the high concentration of new schools in white suburbs, and the poor maintenance of predominately African-American schools in particular as failures of the school system to fully desegregate. Celebration, however, was short-lived for the black plaintiffs and CMS board members. On September 21, 2001, a full panel of the Fourth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals upheld Potter's finding that CMS was unitary by a 7-4 vote. Smith's school choice plan based on neighborhood schools subsequently went into effect in Fall, 2002.

The choice plan, now three years old, is currently under review by the Charlotte-Mecklenburg school board. A January, 2005 Charlotte Observer article deems the current plan the source of "a raft of challenges: over- and under-filled schools, high concentrations of poverty, rising expenses for busing and a complicated assignment lottery system.[xxxviii]" For Wilhemenia Rembert, such problems, while discouraging, are no surprise. In fact, claims Rembert, "the current plan has invoked exactly the circumstances [she] anticipated.[xxxix]" However, after the dismal testimony presented by the Charlotte-Mecklenburg school board during the course of the 1999 trial, the current situation seems more accurately described as an exacerbation of prior problems than a fall from grace. Indeed, the peaceful period of busing for which Charlotte was so lauded after the 1971 Swann ruling may have been a product of the fact that school officials did what they could to keep from rocking the boat of the local white elite. Ideals may have been lofty in theory, but in practice, they were easily outdone by the promises of developers, the threat of white flight and opportunities for community support from the people with the most power to make that support worthwhile. Ironically, just as Cappacchione and the other white plaintiffs urged a reversion through the rhetoric of progress, Charlotte may have earned its progressive reputation through its sheer lack of progressiveness in challenging traditional local power structures. Reframed in Chafe's system of the "progressive mystique," perhaps the thirty-year period of busing in Charlotte could be equated to a controversial line of discussion. The community must welcome this line of discussion as a matter of etiquette; indeed, failure to do so could create conflict far more disruptive to the status quo than moderate compliance. But according to Chafe's model, this line of discussion can exist only insofar as it leaves in place the same "general power relations." Indeed, this may be a realistic picture of what has happened in Charlotte. Busing made changes, but not enough so that southeast Charlotte grows less wealthy, or that West Charlotte high school becomes the top performing school in the district. The old status quo was never drastically altered; rather, it provided the framework within which the social change mandated by Swann was allowed to operate. And the future of that status quo? For Wilhemia Rembert, the reversal of desegregation in Charlotte seems a fairly good insurance policy for the existing order. "The truth is," she says, "in the next four decades, Charlotte will look no different.[xl]"

Armor, David J. Forced Justice: School Desegregation and the Law. Oxford: Oxford University

Press, 1995.

Chafe, William. "Greensboro, North Carolina: A Window on Race in the American South." In

American Places: Encounters with History, edited by William E. Leuchtenburg. Oxford:

Oxford University Press, 2000.

Diamond, Paul R. Beyond Busing: Inside the Challenge to Urban Segregation. Ann Arbor:

University of Michigan Press, 1985.

Galliard, Frye. The Dream Long Deferred. Chapel Hill: The University of North Carolina Press,


Eaton, Susan; Orfield, Gary. Dismantling Desegregation: the quiet reversal of Brown v. Board of

Education. New York: New Press, 1996.

Graham, Jennifer. "Case like Boston's embroils Charlotte schools." Boston Globe, June 28, 1999.

Monday, City Edition. Obtained via InfoTrac.

Helms, Ann Doss. "CMS board to review student placement system that replaced

desegregation." The Charlotte Observer. January 31, 2005. Obtained via Infotrac.

Morrill, Jim; Smith, Celeste. "Debate over race involves schools, local elections." The Charlotte

Observer. December 6, 2000. Obtained via Infotrac.

Pratt, Robert. "Reading, Writing and Race: the Desegregation of Charlotte Schools." Southern

Cultures, Spring 1998, volume 4. Chapel Hill: The University of North Carolina Press, 1998. Obtained via Infotrac. 

Raffel, Jeffrey A. "History of School Desegregation." In School Desegregation in the 21st

Century, edited by Christine H. Rossell, David J. Armor, and Herbert J. Walberg. Westport: Praeger Publishers, 2002.

Rembert, Wilhemenia. Interview by author. By phone, to Charlotte, North Carolina. April 18,


Samuel Smith, Stephen. Boom for Whom? Education, Desegregation, and Development in

Charlotte. Albany: State of New York Press, 2004.

[i] 402 U.S. 1 (1971)

[ii] Galliard, Frye. The Dream Long Deferred. Chapel Hill: The University of North Carolina Press, 1988; 80.

[iii] Chafe, William. "Greensboro, North Carolina: A Window on Race in the American South." In American Places:

Encounters with History, edited by William E. Leuchtenburg. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2000; 41

[iv] 347 U.S. 43 (1954)

[v] 391 U.S. 430 (1968)

[vi] Raffel, Jeffrey A. "History of School Desegregation." In School Desegregation in the 21st Century, edited by Christine H. Rossell, David J. Armor, and Herbert J. Walberg. Westport: Praeger Publishers, 2002; 26.

[vii] Galliard, 52

[viii] Raffel 29

[ix] Eaton, Susan; Orfield, Gary. Dismantling Desegregation: the quiet reversal of Brown v. Board of Education. New

York: New Press, 1996; 180

[x] Galliard, 164

[xi] Graham, Jennifer. "Case like Boston's embroils Charlotte schools." Boston Globe, June 28, 1999. Monday, City

Edition. Obtained via InfoTrac.

[xii] Raffel 29

[xiii] Galliard, xv

[xiv] 498 U.S. 467 (1992)

[xv] Raffel, 33

[xvi] 503 U.S. 467 (1992)

[xvii] Raffel. 33

[xviii] Samuel Smith, Stephen. Boom for Whom? Education, Desegregation, and Development in Charlotte. Albany: State of New York Press, 2004; 160

[xix] Samuel Smith, 160

[xx] Rembert, Wilhemenia. Interview by author. By phone, to Charlotte, North Carolina. April 18, 2005.

[xxi] Samuel Smith, 161

[xxii] Eaton 187

[xxiii] Samuel Smith, 154

[xxiv] Pratt, Robert. "Reading, Writing and Race: the Desegregation of Charlotte Schools." Southern Cultures, Spring

1998, volume 4. Chapel Hill: The University of North Carolina Press, 1998. Obtained via Infotrac. 

[xxv] Galliard, 115

[xxvi] Samuel Smith, 167.

[xxvii] Samuel Smith, 149

[xxviii] Samuel Smith 166

[xxix] Samuel Smith 166

[xxx] Eaton 180

[xxxi] Samuel Smith 167

[xxxii] Armor, David J. Forced Justice: School Desegregation and the Law. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1995; 33

[xxxiii] Graham 

[xxxiv] Graham

[xxxv] Morrill, Jim; Smith, Celeste. "Debate over race involves schools, local elections." The Charlotte Observer.

December 6, 2000. Obtained via Infotrac.

[xxxvi] Samuel Smith 179

[xxxvii] Samuel Smith 169

[xxxviii] Helms, Ann Doss. "CMS board to review student placement system that replaced

desegregation." The Charlotte Observer. January 31, 2005. Obtained via Infotrac.

[xxxix] Rembert

[xl] Rembert

This paper was written for Professor Allison Dorsey's History 7b:  History of the African-American People.  Katherine Chamblee is a junior English major and a Writing Associate.  She is currently studying abroad at Oxford University.