Ebbs and Flows: Revisiting the Relationship between Student Mobility, Segregation, and Neighborhoods

Richard O. Welsh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

In order to access and take advantage of the educational opportunity promised by the Brown decision, student mobility is an operative consideration. In this study, I examine the relationship between student mobility, neighborhoods, and segregation. First, I draw upon empirical evidence from the extant literature to provide a conceptual framework of relationships among educational equity, student mobility, neighborhoods, and segregation. Next, I provide a geospatial analysis by mapping student mobility patterns and school and neighborhood characteristics across the timing of school changes in the Clark County School District (CCSD). The results indicate that the journey to integrate schools nationwide has been constant with ebbs and flows of progress since Brown v. Board in 1954. In the current school system with assignment based on residences, school segregation mirrors residential segregation. A change in student assignment policies such as school choice provides no guarantee that preferences, values, and attitudes that propel residential segregation will not continue to permeate public education. Furthermore, there is inequity in the distribution of resources and opportunities that may be beyond the scope of student assignment policies. The results indicate that the majority of school changes in CCSD occur between neighborhoods in the same city. There is considerable variation in school quality between cities in Clark County. The findings demonstrate that there are segregated school options by demographic composition and school quality.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)493-520
Number of pages28
JournalPeabody Journal of Education
Volume94
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 20 2019

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology

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