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Title: Examining the Shelby County Schools Optional Program: Barriers to Black Student Enrollment in Shelby County Schools
Authors: Scott, Christal N.
Advisors: McKinney, Charles W.
Keywords: Student research;Institute for Regional Studies;Papers;Optional Programs;Education;Shelby County Schools;Magnets;Fellowships;Segregation;Africana Studies;Educational Studies
Issue Date: 1-Jul-2018
Abstract: Memphis has a long-standing history of segregation, most notably within its school system. The struggle to achieve an equitable education has been interrupted by issues of white flight, busing, school privatization, cultural competency, and so on. Segregation in Memphis's schools can be boiled down to many issues; however, this paper will be taking a closer examination of the Shelby County Schools Optional Program and locating the barriers to black student enrollment in AP/Honors classes within its system. The lack of discussion around the necessity of optional schools and its role in perpetuating barriers to black student enrollment in AP/Honors classes is alarming. This paper will expand on the national dilemma of magnet and optional schools and AP courses, and will situate Memphis in the middle of this national debate. By reflecting on the history of optional schools in Memphis, expertise of SCS officials, and the lived experienced of both teacher and student, there is hope that conversations about the Optional Program and educational equity for black students will begin.
Appears in Collections:Rhodes Institute for Regional Studies

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