Brown v. Bd. of Educ.

347 U.S. 483, 74 S. Ct. 686, 98 L. Ed. 873, 1954 U.S. LEXIS 2094, 38 A.L.R.2d 1180, 53 Ohio Op. 326



In the field of public education the doctrine of "separate but equal" has no place. Separate educational facilities are inherently unequal. Therefore, segregation is a deprivation of the equal protection of the laws guaranteed by the Fourteenth Amendment.


Four (4) African-American minors sought admission to the public schools of their community on a non-segregated basis. All minors were denied admission to schools attended by Caucasian children under laws requiring or permitting segregation according to race. Each district court denied relief to the minors on the "separate but equal" doctrine. The case was elevated on appeal to the Supreme Court of the United States.


Is segregation in schools violative of equal protection clause of the Constitution?




The Court overturned Plessy v. Ferguson and the "separate but equal" doctrine, finding that it had no place in public education. Separate educational facilities were inherently unequal and has a detrimental effect upon the African-American children. The Court held that to separate them from others of similar age and qualifications solely because of their race generates a feeling of inferiority as to their status in the community. Segregation also has the tendency to retard the educational and mental development of African-American children and to deprive them of some of the benefits they would receive in a racially integrated school system. As a result, segregation is a denial of the equal protection of the laws under the Fourteenth Amendment.

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