At the Academy of Arts and Letters, a small K-8 school in Brooklyn founded in 2006 to educate a community of “diverse individuals,” that question is being put to the test.It's interesting to read this the day after teaching the complicated compendium of writings that appears under the rubric Parents Involved in Community Schools v. Seattle School District No. 1. That collection of writings suggests that crudely classifying individuals by race violates the Equal Protection Clause but that government may pursue racial integration (and counter racial isolation) through subtler means. It's rather hard to strain out what can be done as opposed to what can't be done. But, wow, there is one case that would clearly go the other way if Justice Scalia were replaced by a liberal Justice. Straightforward race balancing, taking note of the race of the children in public schools, would be constitutionally permissible.
The school — along with six others in New York City — is part of a new Education Department initiative aimed at maintaining a racial and socio-economic balance at schools in fast-gentrifying neighborhoods. For the first time the department is allowing a group of principals to set aside a percentage of seats for low-income families, English-language learners or students engaged with the child welfare system as a means of creating greater diversity within their schools.
February 16, 2016
Begins a NYT article titled "Program Aims to Keep Schools Diverse as New York Neighborhoods Gentrify." It continues: