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Date and time
Wednesday, October 04, 2023
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American Experience presents a virtual PAST FORWARD conversation exploring the state of educational equity in American schools nearly seventy years after Brown vs. Board of Education. This conversation is inspired by our two new films The Busing Battleground and The Harvest: Integrating Mississippi's Schools.

Panelists will discuss the meaning of educational equity, the state of equity in American public schools and the avenues through which to pursue it, examining what is lost when students of all backgrounds are not offered the same opportunities to thrive. They will also consider the roles that class and location play in determining who supports and opposes policy that supports educational equity. The panel will discuss whether these factors reflect the success or failure of the decision in Brown and in the broader movement for school integration.


Dr. Ivory Toldson, Ph.D. is the national director of Education Innovation and Research for the NAACP, professor of counseling psychology at Howard University and editor-in-chief of The Journal of Negro Education. Previously, Dr. Toldson was appointed by President Barack Obama to devise national strategies to sustain and expand federal support to HBCUs as the executive director of the White House Initiative on Historically Black Colleges and Universities. He is also the author of Brill Bestseller, No BS (Bad Stats): Black People Need People Who Believe in Black People Enough Not to Believe Every Bad Thing They Hear about Black People.

Dr. Adrienne Dixson Ph.D. is the Executive Director of the Education and Civil Rights Initiative, and a Professor of Educational Leadership Studies. Her research primarily focuses on how race, class and gender intersect and impact educational equity in urban schooling contexts. She was recognized in Rick Hess Straight Up Edu-Scholar Public Influence Rankings in 2021 and 2022 in the top 200 education scholars in the country. In 2021, Dr. Dixson was inducted as a Fellow in the American Educational Research Association.

The discussion will be moderated by Sonya Douglass, Ed.D. Sonya is Professor of Education Leadership and Vice Chair of the Department of Organization and Leadership at Teachers College, Columbia University. Her research examines educational leadership, policy, and politics with a focus on race and the history of Black education in the U.S. She is author of the award-winning book, Learning in a Burning House: Educational Inequality, Ideology, and (Dis)Integration (Teachers College Press, 2011).

The event will be streamed live on our YouTube and Facebook pages.

Photo credit: Credit: Boston Globe/Getty

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