Desegregation court cases and school demographic data


This page provides information about a specific school district. To compare patterns in this district with data for all schools in the metropolitan region, click the link below. NOTE: If there is only a single school, there will be no measured segregation, and children of all race/ethnic groups will have the same exposures on the test scores and poverty of the school they attend. In some cases the test scores are the same because all schools in the district reported the same result (this is more likely when the score was reported as a range rather than a single value).


Total Population Schools Reporting
Non Hispanic
Non Hispanic
Hispanic Asian
1968-70 18,381 32 16,805 1,544 4 28
91.4% 8.4% 0.0% 0.2%
1980 22,003 40 16,966 4,688 37 312
77.1% 21.3% 0.2% 1.4%
1990 19,091 42 13,009 5,385 122 556
67.4% 28.9% 0.7% 2.9%
2000 22,994 52 14,161 7,757 385 687
61.8% 33.6% 1.6% 3.0%
2010 25,874 57 11,775 9,195 1,789 2,154
45.5% 35.5% 6.9% 8.3%
1968-70 1980
1990 2000 2010
Economic and class size disparities between schools

Great variations in the class composition of schools are revealed by the percentage of students who are eligible for free or reduced-price lunches (less than about $45,000 income for a family of four in 2015.). The following indices describe the degree of segregation of “poor” children from “non-poor” children (an Index of Dissimilarity); the extent to which poor children are in schools with other poor children and non-poor children with other non-poor children (these are like exposure indices); and the percent poor in the school that the average group member of various races attends (these are also exposure indices). There is also variation in class size as experienced by members of each group (measured as the ratio of students to teachers in the entire school).

Following are measures of student performance based on state tests in 2010 (or the closest available year). Schools have been ranked against all other schools in the same state, and values here are for the school's percentile ranking from 0 (the worst in the state) to 100 (best in the state). We do not have measures of how students in each racial group performed. What is shown here is the ranking of the school that the average student in each group attend. Nationally we find that black, Hispanic, and Native American children attend schools where student performance is much lower than in the schools that white and Asian children attend.

Black HispanicAsian Native
Reading 57.3 34.0 34.3 59.9 41.5
Math 58.3 39.1 44.8 61.6 45.2

In 1999-2000, the segregation of the non-poor from poor children was .52 (dissimilarity index). The average non-poor child is in a school that is 68% non-poor. The average poor child's school is 67% poor. The following bar charts, in most cases, show that children from different races went to schools with different levels of poverty but with more similar student/teacher ratios.

Percent poor in the school of the average group member, 2010
Index of Dissimilarity (D)

The dissimilarity index measures whether one particular group is distributed across census tracts in the metropolitan area in the same way as another group. A high value indicates that the two groups tend to live in different tracts. D ranges from 0 to 100. A value of 60 (or above) is considered very high. It means that 60% (or more) of the members of one group would need to move to a different tract in order for the two groups to be equally distributed. Values of 40 or 50 are usually considered a moderate level of segregation, and values of 30 or below are considered to be fairly low.

Exposure Index

Another measure of school segregation is a class of exposure indices (p*) that refer to the racial/ethnic composition of the elementary school attended by the average member of a given group. For example, the average Hispanic might attend elementary schools that are 40% Hispanic, 40% non-Hispanic white,15% black, and 5% Asian. (Note that these various indices must add up to 100%.) These are presented below in two categories: exposure of the group to itself (which is called the Index of Isolation) and exposure ofthe group to other groups.

Isolation Indices

The isolation index is the percentage of same-group population the the elementary schools where the average member of a racial/ethnic group attends. It has a lower bound of zero (for a very small group that is quite dispersed) to 100 (meaning that group members are entirely isolated from other groups). It should be kept in mind that this Index is affected by the size of the group -- it is almost inevitably smaller for smaller groups, and it is likely to rise over time if the group becomes larger.

Exposure to other groups

Indices of exposure to other groups also range from 0 to 100, where a larger value means that the average group member attends elementary school with a higher percentage of children from the other group. These indices depend partly on the overall size of the other group in the region.