This website provides information about desegregation court cases, trends in racial composition and segregation of elementary schools, and additional recent information about poverty, teacher-student ratios, and performance on standardized state tests. For every school district, information is provided on court cases (if any) that involved the district. A link to the Westlaw text for the court decision is also provided when available. In addition, for every district there is information on racial and ethnic composition of the elementary student population for available years, and summary indices of school segregation.

Data are also provided about elementary schools in metropolitan regions. Ignoring district boundaries we aggregate information on all schools in a region and calculate the overall racial composition, racial/ethnic segregation, and performance of schools attended by the average white, black, Hispanic, or Asian student.

Information on the court cases was compiled from multiple sources: Department of Justice; NAACP Legal Defense Fund; and other published documents.

Information on school district racial and ethnic composition and levels of segregation is drawn from multiple sources that refer specifically to public school children in the elementary grades. For school years 1968-71, Dr. Franklin Wilson of the University of Wisconsin provided data at the school district level. For 1980 (in some cases using data from 1981 or1979 instead) the original data source is the HEW Office for Civil Rights. We received the raw files for individual schools from Dr. Sarah Reber (UCLA School of Public Affairs) and completed the data processing necessary to identify the current NCES school and district codes for most schools. For the school years 1989-90 and 1999-2000, these data were provided by the National Center for Education Statistics.

Information on performance on standardized test scores is based on elementary reading tests for 2004 (or in some cases 2005) compiled from the School website (now inactive).

Use the menu below to select a state or a metropolitan region, and then a school district within it.

Racial and Ethnic Segregation by School District
      Browse school districts by selecting a state       
by selecting an MSA

Or choose a metropolitan region. Segregation between school districts in the same region is a major contributor to educational inequality (such as the common situation where minority students are concentrated in central cities and white students in suburbs). The metro pages compile information about all elementary schools in a metropolitan region, ignoring school district boundaries. There are also links on these pages to information about the central city and suburban portions of these metros. Use the menu below to select a metropolitan region.

        Racial and Ethnic Segregation by MSA          

Click here for additional technical information on the sources of data and construction of indices. From the download page, you can get the data.