40 Ways to Build a More Equitable America

"Segregated, unequal and underfunded schools, and the education received in them, constitute an under­acknowledged form of structural or institutional racism that, over time, harms as surely as physical violence. The impacts are educational, but also psychological, emotional, spiritual and physical. We see it in the mental turmoil, self-doubt and insecurity caused by unequal educational systems showing children in our society that they are simply less important than others.

In the preamble to its constitution, the World Health Organization says that health is a state of “complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.” This is not the state of health for students who attend segregated schools. Simply put: racial segregation is unhealthy. We can do better. —Noliwe Rooks, scholar of race and gender at Cornell University"

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Professor Noliwe Rooks