Louisville Author Highlights Effects of Desegregation in Local Schools

A Louisville native and education reporter has authored a new book to be released this week that considers the effects of the Jefferson County Public Schools’ student assignment plan.

Sarah Garland is author of “Divided We Fail”, which draws personal narratives into the conversation of desegregation in the public school system.

In her book Garland argues that student assignment plans and desegregation over the past few decades have not been a cure-all for racial inequality in Louisville schools and she demonstrates how student assignment has been both beneficial and harmful to some students. 

“Diversity is really important for public education, but the way it’s been done has not always necessary been fair or just and figuring out how to make sure schools are racial integrated is a really difficult question,” she says.

Garland says she hopes the book can be used in other areas of the country where reformers are trying to improve the public education system, but she says the best options are not always apparent.

“One of the moms who went out to Fairdale in 1975 and was on a bus that got rocked by protestors and had rocks thrown at her, in the end she looked back and thought desegregation and busing is a good thing for her kids,” she said.

Garland will be in Louisville on Feb. 15 to read from her book at Carmichael’s Bookstore on Frankfort. Avenue.

Devin Katayama

Devin Katayama host middays for WFPL and reports on education and other Louisville issues.

@DevinWFPL

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