In considering boundary changes across its district, the Shawnee Mission School Board has proposed a plan that would consequently increase racial segregation at one of its elementary schools. Under the plan, the minority population at Rising Star Elementary School in Lenexa would rise 9%, from 54% of the student population to 63%. Other elementary schools would experience no more than a 3% increase in minority population.
Also concerning to the ACLU is the high percentage of black students enrolled in the district's special education programs. Research shows that African American students are consistently overrepresented in special education programs and are significantly more likely to be deemed as special needs than their white counterparts.
Ahead of the school board vote on the boundary proposal, the ACLU sent a letter to Sara Goodburn, board president, outlining our concerns and encouraging the board to consider a different proposal that would have better outcomes for all students.
"Shawnee Mission School Board picks boundary changes that avoid criticism of racial disparity", The Kansas City Star, 6/2/2017
"Hours before school board meeting, ACLU raises questions about racial segregation in Shawnee Mission's 'Plan B' boundary lines", Shawnee Mission Post, 6/1/2017