Racist School Policies Get the Supreme Smackdown

The Associated Press is reporting on the latest SCOTUS opinion from this morning, and as it turns out it’s one on which we filed an amicus brief (PDF link). In its decision on Parents Involved in Community Schools v. Seattle School District, the justices struck down the use of race by public school districts when admitting/assigning students to their various institutions. I’m sure legal maestro Hans will have much more to say later today (UPDATE: he has), but here’s the quick take for now:

The Supreme Court on Thursday rejected school diversity plans that take account of students’ race in two major public school districts but left the door open for using race in limited circumstances.

The decision in cases affecting schools in Louisville, Ky., and Seattle could imperil similar plans in hundreds of districts nationwide, and it further restricts how public school systems may attain racial diversity.

The court split, 5-4, with Chief Justice John Roberts announcing the court’s judgment. The court’s four liberal justices dissented.

The districts “failed to show that they considered methods other than explicit racial classifications to achieve their stated goals,” Roberts said.

Previous posts on the case are here (12/6/06) here (5/18/06). The Seattle Times also has a timeline of action on the case going back to 2000 here.