2016 年 27 巻 p. 15-27
The purpose of this paper is to examine the transformation of desegregation/integration plans from "color-conscious" to "color-blind" in the United States.
Current issues of equality in education are growing more and more complicated. Progress was made by Brown v. Board of Education in 1954, the Civil Rights Act in 1964, and the Elementary and Secondary Education Act（ESEA）in 1965, expanding equal opportunities in education for people of color, particularly black children. However, trends in population and racial/ethnic components continue to change, and some cities have seen increases in the Hispanic/Latino population in recent years.
Furthermore, color-blind ideology has spread in the United States. Because color-blind ideology is seen by some as an ideal, seeming to indicate equal treatment of all people, both right and left use the term. However, we should be careful in our dealings with this concept, as "color- blindness" has potential to hide and exacerbate inequality.
With respect to desegregation/integration, white students filed a lawsuit against the affirmative action admissions program in universities, claiming it to be "reverse discrimination" against white people. They requested equal opportunity for all, referring to the equal protection clause of the Fourteenth Amendment. Some Supreme Court decisions concerning desegregation plans have additionally affected and narrowed the scope of desegregation/integration.
In elementary and secondary public education, Parents Involved in Community Schools v. Seattle School District No.1; Meredith and McDonald v. Jefferson County Board of Education et al., U.S. 127 S. Ct. 2738（PICS）had a huge impact on desegregation/integration plans in United States public schools, specifically outlawing any desegregation/integration plan giving priority mainly based on race. The U.S. Department of Justice and Department of Education illustrated and suggested guidelines on voluntary use of race—that is, a race-neutral strategy for achieving diversity. For instance, Cambridge’s controlled choice plan had been recognized since the 1980s as one of the better integration plans based on race and other factors; from 2002 on, factors including socio-economic status, race, and gender were used in controlled choice. However, this plan was revised in 2013, as the use of race as a criterion was forbidden.
Color-blind or race-neutral educational policy has become widespread in pursuit of equality for all children. However, this strategy could in fact support rights for white people rather than people of color. We should thus examine the real situation of all children, and scrutinize whether inequality and（re）segregation has in fact grown worse than before.