Is DISD Short-Shrifting Poor, Black Students?

On Monday, a civil rights lawsuit was filed against the Dallas ISD. You can read the original complaint. Or you can settle for this summary: the Coalition to Maximize Education and some parents of students claim “that DISD is discriminating against African-American and lower-income students by providing inferior educational facilities and fewer educational opportunities in predominantly African-American areas of Dallas.”

Let’s examine that claim by taking a look at the last two bond programs and how the money has and will be spent in each of the nine trustee districts that make up the Dallas ISD. The greatness that is Louisa Meyer crunched some numbers that don’t exactly support the claims in this suit.

$1.349 billion — amount allocated to poor, African-American districts (4, 5, 6, and 9).

$825 million — amount allocated to “wealthier” districts (1, 2, 3, 7, and 8).

Granted, there are several variables I’m not taking into account. The biggest: I don’t know how many schools are in each of the nine districts that make up the Dallas ISD. Also, I’m making broad assumptions about race and class. Have a look at a map of the nine trustee districts. Calling the entirety of District 5, for instance, “poor and African American” doesn’t make much sense. One more note: Meyer couldn’t account for every dollar in the two bond programs by district, so some of the money is missing from this accounting.


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15 responses to “Is DISD Short-Shrifting Poor, Black Students?”

  1. DKC says:

    Only a glimpse of things to come. Just wait till Obama the Savior is elected.

    Just kill me now!

  2. Bethany says:

    You mean, if McCain gets elected, there won’t be any more lawsuits like that?

    Super Awesome.

    What this suit doesn’t say – and what will probably come out in trial, I’d hope, is what the parents did prior to this. Were they actively involved in school activities? Did they attend their child’s parent-teacher conferences without fail? Did they attempt to address their concerns with their child’s teacher and principal?

    These are all things that should’ve been done prior to that. If this was the first reaction, I’m disappointed.

  3. D says:

    Just read the Plaintiff’s names:
    Marquabious and Mia-Tiara Jonjae. Their mother didn’t even give them a fighting chance.

  4. Claire says:

    Bon qui qui would be proud.

  5. Peterk says:

    $1.349 billion divided by 4 = 337 million

    $825 million divided by 5 = 165 million

    whose getting shortchanged?

    check here for census information

  6. Gwyon says:

    “whose getting shortchanged?”

    Peterk, apparently.

  7. Louisa Meyer, Dallas ISD parent and TOD says:

    Anyone can access the same information to do the same tally and more.

    Refer to page 7.5 here:

    and page 4 here:

    Tim is absolutely right regarding broad assumptions so let’s be careful there. I did not serve on either bond committee but followed their work and believe great efforts were made to be equitable.

    Remember – both programs identified a need of $2.6 billion yet asked voters for half that. $1.3 billion was determined to be what could be executed in a 4 to 5 year time frame. So the plan is to return to voters in 4 to 5 years for approval of the other half which will be reevaluated then to account for demographic changes.

  8. Towski says:

    @ D: Actually, their mother gave them a headstart. Imagine if one of your first tasks in kindergarten was learning to spell Marquabious…

  9. D says:

    @Towski: I think the mother meant for the name to be Marquavious. I bet he goes by marq.

  10. Jason says:

    File this in the County Commissioner scandal folder dated July 2008 – file 13.

    Stop playing the race card. I think they are pissed because they are getting passed up by other immigrants who start with less but yet figure out a way to become well to do in America – Latinos, Asians, our friends from India, etc.

    When was the last time you saw a Latino, Asians, or Indian begging for change in Dallas? They are always white and black people.

  11. Peterk says:

    “whose getting shortchanged?”

    Peterk, apparently.

    thanks for the spelling lesson. . you’re (as in you are) correct. that should not be whose but who’s as in who is

  12. Puddin'Tane says:

    If a book sits on a desk top left unread, does the cost of the book actually matter?

    We continue to spend money on people who still don’t take advantage of a system handed to them by taxpayers.

    The State can only go so far and after that we MUST put the responsibility back on the cyclical dysfunction of home and culture.

    You want to “over come?” Well cut the crap ’cause you’ve had plenty of time already!

  13. Bethany says:

    I really, really wanted to copy edit that suit.

  14. Peterk says:

    @Bethany “I really, really wanted to copy edit that suit.”

    no you don’t it will only damage you brain cells

  15. ross flunker says:

    Hang on people! Please forget about equal spending. The main issue should be equal opportunity for all children within the district. Get the cameras out and let the muckraking begin. The supreme court ruled on this very issue in 1968. The name of the court case was Green vs. Kent County Virginia School Board.
    The case states absolute equality in six areas. The Children in these areas are truly being discriminated against.

    Unequal time children receive in core content classes.

    Unequal facilities.

    Unequal time allocated for extra curricular activities.

    These are three indicators that illustrate the disparity within this single unified school district. I could care less about race, right is right and wrong is wrong!