The USA has been an example of a democratic society where people have equal rights and opportunities. However, the US equality has often been questioned. Admittedly, there can be no equality in a segregated society. The Civil Rights Movement is regarded as a successful campaign.
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Though, segregation is still in many areas (or rather most areas) in the USA. Rosenthal and Mayo (2012) claim that a new Seattle school plan contributes to the increase in segregated areas in the city and its suburbs. Clearly, such racial groups as African Americans will not be able to pay for buses to attend schools in better areas (noteworthy, these schools are also considered to be better than those in poorer areas).
These children will have fewer educational opportunities and this will inevitably lead to fewer job opportunities for them in future. Therefore, it is possible to note that the new school plan can negatively affect development of the city as it will contribute to development of a highly segregated society.
To consider the impact of the new school program, it is necessary to take a closer look at such theoretical perspective as urban ecology. This theoretical perspective helps better understand the processes and trends existing in the city (Crowder, n.d., p. 3). According to this perspective, some social groups tend to dominate certain areas. Historically, more well-to-do areas have been dominated by the white population, while poorer areas have been populated by African Americans.
In this respect, it is obvious that it is vital for African American young population to have an opportunity to leave the poorer neighborhoods. Young African Americans can go to better schools in other areas so that they have more educational opportunities in future. Admittedly, schools in more prosperous neighborhoods tend to provide better educational services and students of these schools often enter colleges and/or universities, and this, in its turn, helps them get better jobs.
Nonetheless, the new program deprives children and young people from poorer neighborhoods of such educational opportunities (Rosenthal & Mayo, 2012).
Population of poorer neighborhoods can become confined to their neighborhoods as, obviously, they are unable to pay extra money for transport. In the end, this program will become one of the major factors contributing to residential segregation, i.e. distribution of certain social groups into separate areas (Lecture 9, p.1). Salaries, real estate prices, educational opportunities are some of the factors that affect residential segregation. It may seem that diversity is no longer one of the priorities of officials.
On balance, it is possible to note that the new school program in Seattle can have a number of negative effects. Unfortunately, segregation still persists in the American society and such programs can contribute to further development of a segregated society. Admittedly, financial difficulties the city is facing should be taken into account and it is possible to economize.
However, it is unacceptable to try to economize at the expense of those who have even more financial constraints. The program can deprive many students coming from poorer neighborhoods of their chance to succeed in life. This program can also contribute to creation of the society where well-to-do areas enjoy prosperity while poorer neighborhoods are struggling with such problems as violence and crime. It is time to face the problem and start diminishing residential segregation in the state and nationwide.
Crowder, K. (n.d.). Soc201A Lecture 3: Theoretical perspectives on urban change.
Lecture 9: Residential segregation.
Rosenthal, B.M. & Mayo, J. (2012, August 20).6 Seattle schools have become whiter as new assignment plan changes racial balance. The Seattle Times. Retrieved from http://old.seattletimes.com/html/education/2018958662_schoolsegregation16m.html