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Brown V. Board of Education: A Fight for Simple Justice

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An award-winning author chronicles the story behind the landmark Supreme Court decision in this fascinating account for young readers. In 1954, one of the most significant Supreme Court decisions of the twentieth Century aimed to end school segregation in the United States. The ruling was the culmination of work by many people who stood up to racial inequality, some ri An award-winning author chronicles the story behind the landmark Supreme Court decision in this fascinating account for young readers. In 1954, one of the most significant Supreme Court decisions of the twentieth Century aimed to end school segregation in the United States. The ruling was the culmination of work by many people who stood up to racial inequality, some risking significant danger and hardship, and of careful strategizing by the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP). Award-winning author Susan Goldman Rubin tells the stories behind the ruling and the people responsible for it. Illustrated with historical photographs, this well-researched narrative account is a perfect introduction to the history of school segregation in the United States and the long struggle to end it. An epilogue looks at the far-reaching effects of this landmark decision, and shows how our country still grapples today with a public school system not yet fully desegregated. Detailed backmatter includes a timeline, primary source texts, and summaries of all mentioned court cases. An ALA Notable Children's Book A Patterson Prize Honor Book A Bank Street Best Children's Book of the Year


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An award-winning author chronicles the story behind the landmark Supreme Court decision in this fascinating account for young readers. In 1954, one of the most significant Supreme Court decisions of the twentieth Century aimed to end school segregation in the United States. The ruling was the culmination of work by many people who stood up to racial inequality, some ri An award-winning author chronicles the story behind the landmark Supreme Court decision in this fascinating account for young readers. In 1954, one of the most significant Supreme Court decisions of the twentieth Century aimed to end school segregation in the United States. The ruling was the culmination of work by many people who stood up to racial inequality, some risking significant danger and hardship, and of careful strategizing by the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP). Award-winning author Susan Goldman Rubin tells the stories behind the ruling and the people responsible for it. Illustrated with historical photographs, this well-researched narrative account is a perfect introduction to the history of school segregation in the United States and the long struggle to end it. An epilogue looks at the far-reaching effects of this landmark decision, and shows how our country still grapples today with a public school system not yet fully desegregated. Detailed backmatter includes a timeline, primary source texts, and summaries of all mentioned court cases. An ALA Notable Children's Book A Patterson Prize Honor Book A Bank Street Best Children's Book of the Year

30 review for Brown V. Board of Education: A Fight for Simple Justice

  1. 4 out of 5

    Brenda Selner

    History of the fight to desegregate schools up to the victory in the Supreme Court. Almost like watching a judicial drama on TV. Although it provides updates on the main characters, it does not give the full, complete story of school desegregation. I wish author had included stories of desegregation as they happened across the country ... took years after the SC decision! There are some great stories in those efforts, as well--I know, 'cause I was there! History of the fight to desegregate schools up to the victory in the Supreme Court. Almost like watching a judicial drama on TV. Although it provides updates on the main characters, it does not give the full, complete story of school desegregation. I wish author had included stories of desegregation as they happened across the country ... took years after the SC decision! There are some great stories in those efforts, as well--I know, 'cause I was there!

  2. 5 out of 5

    Jennifer

    Full of pictures and very readable and engaging text, this book is a review of the cases, plaintiffs, and attorneys involved in the Supreme Court cases to end segregation in America's public schools. A timeline, brief summaries of the relevant cases, the text of the 14th Amendment, the text of the SCOTUS decision in Brown v. Board of Education, a bibliography, source notes, and an index are all included. I enjoyed it. Highly recommended as an introduction to the subject for middle/high school st Full of pictures and very readable and engaging text, this book is a review of the cases, plaintiffs, and attorneys involved in the Supreme Court cases to end segregation in America's public schools. A timeline, brief summaries of the relevant cases, the text of the 14th Amendment, the text of the SCOTUS decision in Brown v. Board of Education, a bibliography, source notes, and an index are all included. I enjoyed it. Highly recommended as an introduction to the subject for middle/high school students.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Amanda Harrison

    Excellent view of history with great use of detail and excerpts at the right times. So many kids and so many stories--this book can be read from beginning to end. A few details to highlight p37 and the whole chapter on the student strike! From the beginning when they tricked the principal into leaving the school and then staged a protest and as students requested help from the NAACP lawyers! All the different cases that made up Brown vs Board of Education--I had no idea that other plaintiffs, sta Excellent view of history with great use of detail and excerpts at the right times. So many kids and so many stories--this book can be read from beginning to end. A few details to highlight p37 and the whole chapter on the student strike! From the beginning when they tricked the principal into leaving the school and then staged a protest and as students requested help from the NAACP lawyers! All the different cases that made up Brown vs Board of Education--I had no idea that other plaintiffs, states, etc were involved. The difficult times that all the families experienced due to putting their names to these lawsuits, houses burned, jobs lost, etc. Going to court wasn't an easy thing to do. The straight up talk, "At that point a racist named..." (p.88). Yes, call it like it is, Rubin, excellent. And finally, the verdict, "In these days it is doubtful that any child may reasonably be expected to succeed in life if he is denied the opportunity of an education...a right which must be made to all on equal terms. To separate [black children] from others of a similar age and qualifications solely because of their race generates a feeling of inferiority as to their status in the community that may affect their hearts and minds in a way unlikely ever to be undone. We conclude," he said, and looked up to add the word "unanimously," "that in the field of public education the doctrine of 'separate but equal' has no place. Separate educational facilities are inherently unequal." (p.80).

  4. 5 out of 5

    Mrs. Shaundell Smith

    A very informative YA non-fiction book that presents background information about Thurgood Marshall and the five court cases which came together to create the U.S. Supreme Court Case Brown v. Board of Education. An easy read and I learned quite a bit about this important time in American history. It is amazing that all 9 of the Supreme Court Justices votes unanimously to overturn segregation in the schools.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Elizabeth

    We as a nation are still having repercussions from segregation in schools. This is a huge reason why so many children are not on target with their reading levels. Sadly, I don’t think the damage will ever fully be corrected. I’m also shocked that just as recent as 20 years ago, cities (including my Cleveland, Ohio), were backtracking, and trending once again toward resegregation in schools.

  6. 4 out of 5

    PottWab Regional Library

    E

  7. 5 out of 5

    Barbara

    As important as the Supreme Court's ruling in Brown v. Board of Education was, many public schools today have become resegregated due to white flight to the suburbs and changing neighborhood patterns. The slowness of some school districts and states to respond to that mandate ending school segregation resulted in great changes in some areas but not in others. Well-researched and thoughtfully written, this account of the many individuals whose desire for equal opportunities provided through educa As important as the Supreme Court's ruling in Brown v. Board of Education was, many public schools today have become resegregated due to white flight to the suburbs and changing neighborhood patterns. The slowness of some school districts and states to respond to that mandate ending school segregation resulted in great changes in some areas but not in others. Well-researched and thoughtfully written, this account of the many individuals whose desire for equal opportunities provided through education for themselves or for their children is inspiring and reminds readers of how far we've come as well as how far we still need to go. In many cases it was brave families in Kansas, in South Carolina, in Virginia, in Delaware, and in California who took those initial steps for change by questioning their local authorities and school districts and being willing to become involved in filing law suits that might lead to change. Containing several archival photos of schools and the individuals at the forefront of this movement, the book's author goes to great pains to bring these men, women, and children to life, carefully describing the work that went into building a case that could be made before the Supreme Court and all the drama associated with waiting for a response from the justices. The death of the court's Chief Justice, Fred Vinson, and the appointment of a new Chief Justice, Earl Warren, adds even more intrigue to the story and shows just how politically important the appointment of certain officials can be. The author includes details from both sides of the argument, making sure that the concern of some officials that things would change too fast and cause violent reactions was shared alongside the recognition that separate is never equal and that schools attended by black children were inferior in many ways to those attended by white children. Readers catch glimpses of attorney Thurgood Marshall and his legal team at work, and then follow him, decades later, as a justice on the Supreme Court, he writes a dissenting opinion about school busing as everything comes full circle, and the need for busing students from one part of town to another to achieve racial balance in schools is explored. Clearly, this ruling mattered, but just as clearly, the times they are a-changing, and it will be interesting to see what happens next. Clearly, our nation's schools are a long way from being desegregated, and just as clearly, many individuals took great risks and devoted their lives to trying to change the way things were being done. My heart broke when I read the description of one science lab in a school for African-American students: It contained a Bunsen burner and a bowl of goldfish. As one reviewer noted, there are many, many stories that could be written about what happened after the ruling although for the most part, those aren't covered here. When I first moved to New Orleans in the early 1980s to teach, for instance, I was shocked to find that the schools almost entirely served a black clientele. Perhaps future books for middle graders and teens will tell those stories, but this one provides a firm historical foundation for the events that led to Brown v. Board of Education. Back matter includes references, additional information on the cases bundled under Brown, and the transcript of the ruling. Oh, to have been present in the Court on that day!

  8. 4 out of 5

    Amy Lafleur Meyers

    Susan Goldman Rubin tells the history of what led to Brown v. Board of Education Supreme Court case as well as the case itself and the aftermath. The 1896 Plessy v. Ferguson case stated that schools and facilities for white and black students were to be "separate but equal." However that was far from the reality. White and black children went to school under very different conditions. White students learned in modern schools with adequate space and with many opportunities to learn, while black s Susan Goldman Rubin tells the history of what led to Brown v. Board of Education Supreme Court case as well as the case itself and the aftermath. The 1896 Plessy v. Ferguson case stated that schools and facilities for white and black students were to be "separate but equal." However that was far from the reality. White and black children went to school under very different conditions. White students learned in modern schools with adequate space and with many opportunities to learn, while black students learned in cramped and inadequate schools with very few opportunities to learn. Black students also had to walk or ride the bus over long distances and unsafe routes to reach the black schools while white schools were only blocks away from their homes. Rubin writes an absorbing history of segregation, and unequal schools, as well as the fight for equal opportunities to learn. The story itself is fascinating but what makes it even more moving are the testimonies of from students who faced unequal conditions mixed into the text. There are also many photographs of the separate but unequal schools side by side to show readers the need for integrated schools. Both the testimonies and photographs really make the history come alive beyond the basic facts of the Supreme Court case. The book also contains other resources such as a timeline of segregation and civil rights events relating to Brown v. Board case and integration, brief summaries of the cases referenced in the book, and text of the 14th Amendment and Brown v. Board decision. Fascinating, informative, and well-researched book.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Dawn Moews

    (18-19: 1, 0, 0)

  10. 5 out of 5

    Edward Sullivan

    Reviewed for professional publication.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Helena

  12. 5 out of 5

    Stephanie

  13. 5 out of 5

    Grits Helme

  14. 4 out of 5

    Ames Public Library Youth Services

  15. 4 out of 5

    Emily Siniard

  16. 5 out of 5

    Jessica

  17. 5 out of 5

    Mary

  18. 5 out of 5

    Lara Ford

  19. 5 out of 5

    Susan

  20. 5 out of 5

    read.r.um

  21. 4 out of 5

    Jess

  22. 5 out of 5

    Alison

  23. 4 out of 5

    Katie

  24. 5 out of 5

    Michele Davis

  25. 5 out of 5

    Julie

  26. 4 out of 5

    Em

  27. 4 out of 5

    Michaelyuri

  28. 4 out of 5

    Mary Ann

  29. 4 out of 5

    Dan

  30. 4 out of 5

    Kim

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