Seattle Public Schools was among the first districts in the country to try integrating its schools without a court order. Under pressure from civil rights activists beginning in the 1960s, the district implemented a number of voluntary and mandatory programs to make all schools better reflect the racial demographics of the city, a goal that carried the promise of improved educational opportunities for students of color.
Fifteen years ago, the last of those efforts — a policy designed to maintain racial balance in city high schools — was ruled unconstitutional by the U.S. Supreme Court in a 5-4 decision. To understand how these efforts have shaped the city and its school system, we want to hear from you.
If you are a student, educator, parent, activist, researcher or community member with a story to share about Seattle’s school-integration programs, please fill out the form below. No story is too small or too recent. Whether you were required to ride the bus across the city in the 1980s, or if you applied to attend a city high school outside your neighborhood in the early 2000s, we’d like to hear about it. Reporters from The Seattle Times may contact you to follow up on your response.
We are also reporting on the effects that racial segregation has on present-day Seattle students and educators. If you have a tip related to this, please contact reporter Dahlia Bazzaz, firstname.lastname@example.org or through encrypted messaging platform Signal at 206-464-8522.