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August 18, 1976 - Image 7

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Publication:
Michigan Daily, 1976-08-18

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Wednesday, August 18, 1976

THE MICHIGAN DAILY

Page Seven

School board to discuss desegregation

The 54 per cent figure is "not
carved in stone," Moseley said.
But if it were to go into effect,
at least two Ann Arbor elemen-
tary schools would come under
the impacted designation. Mack
School has a minority enroll-
ment of 51.8 per cent, and
\'orthside contains 53.4 per cent
inority students.
Meanwhile, Bryant School is
fast approaching, the tentative
cut-off point, with 44.9 per cent
minority s t u d e n t s (includ-
ing blacks, Chicanos, Native
Americans, and Asian Ameri-
cans).
IN 1971 and 1974, the Board
of Education adopted goals for
improving the equality of edu-
cation in Ann Arbor. However,
no specific measures have been
taken for further school inte-
gration since 1965, when Jones
school was closed down and its
students - mainly black - were
disbursed among predominantly
white schools all over the city.
In the meantime, minority
population in Ann Arbor has
grown considerably, as has en-

rollment. Presently the percent-
ages of minority students in the
city's 25 public elementary
schools has become fairly dis-
proportionate. F o r example,
Freeman School is only .5 per
cent minority students; Stone is
15 per cent, and Wines 27.5 per
cent.
A 1975 study of the district's
fifth graders has brought spec-
ulation that the teaching in the
schools with high minority pop-
ulations has been less than ef-
fective.
THE THREE schools which
fared the worst in a study of
fifth grade reading comprehen-
sion were Bryant, where 50 per
cent of the students were in
the lowest ranking of compre-
hension (under 25 per cent);
Mack, where 54.8 per cent were
in the lowest category; and
Bach School-with an 19.4 per
cent m i n o r i t y enrollment-
which collected 53.8 per cent of
students under the 25 per cent
comprehension mark.
The schools with the highest
reading comprehension marks

(more than 75 per cent) included
Burns Park, which has only 9.2
per cent minority students, and
56.6 per cent of the students
were in the highest category of
the survey. Eberwhite, with 7.3
per cent minorities, and Stone,
with 15 per cent, both got around
43 per cent in the over-75 per
cent comprehension rank.
However, these statistics ap-
pear to be affected by some
missing factors. Allen School,
where only 9.1 per cent of the
students are minorities, 90.9 per
cent of the teachers have their
masters degrees, and the aver-
age teacher experience is 18.7
years (the largest average in
the school district) had 32 per
cent of its students in the lowest
and an equal number in the
highest category. T h u s, al-
though scores often were higher
where teachers had more ex-
perience, this was not always
the case.
AT TONIGHT'S in e e t i n g,
which begins at 9 p.m. and is
open to the public, no plans will
be drawn up to relieve the im-

pacted situation of Ann Arbor's
schools. It will merely be an
informational session, and Board
members will be presented with
case studies of several means
of changing the racial distribu-
tions in a school system. These
include re-districting, busing,
and specialized or single-grade
schools for the entire district.
"We're obligated to do noth-
ing (at this pont)," said Mose-
ley. He added that no desegre-
gation plan is on a Board
agenda as of yet, since it is
"not even recommended yet."
The Board, however, expects
to hear a lot of public discus-
sion on the possibility of de-
segregation measures.
"It'll come up from time to
time no matter what the state
does," Moseley predicted.
"SOME (PARENTS) might
think we're trying to slip some-
thing by them, and some
(others) feel that integration is
long past due," he added.
Should the state make its pro-
posed guidelines mandatory the
Board will probably give most

consideration to a plan which
would include,. in the words of
the Board's "discussion docu-
ment":
-"issuing of a policy state-
ment on desegregation and
equal educational opportunity;
-parent, community, student,
staff involvement in planning
for desegregation and integra-
tion;
-and consideration of a large
scope of factors individual to
the community, such as person-
nel, facilities, and student prob-
lems.
It was suggested that funding
for such a plan might come
from Title VII of the Civil
Rights Act, which includes the
educational amendments. How-
ever, Moseley emphasized that
any desegregation plan is still
purely theoretical at the present
time.
Jim White, a cowboy, dis-
covered the Carlsbad Caverns
in New Mexico in 1901 when he
saw a great number of bats
come out of an opening in the
ground.

Watch Inc. watches out

By TIM SCHICK
special To The Daily
KANSAS CITY, Mo. - Many
remember the tense atmosphere
that presided at the Miami
Beach convention in 1972 and
the violence that marked the
Democratic convention in Chi-
cago in 1968. But all this is ab-
sent in Kansas City due in part
to a group of volunteers known
as Watch Inc.
Watch is made up of 460 im-
partial observers who "cover
all points of possible abrasive
contact" during toe convention
week and report what happens
in a daily news letter.
CO-FOUNDER James Leffing-
well explained the purpose of
Watch as:
---maintaining peace and tran-
quility in Kansas City during
the convention;
-protecting the rights of dele-
gates to perform their lawful
duty; and
-protection of first amend-
ment rights of non-delegates.
Leffingwell added, "The very
presence of a neutral observer
affects the behavior of all
groups positively."
The use of neutral observers
has also been found successful
on the South Dakota Indian Res-
ervation and was created with
the prevention of violence in
Miami during the 1972 conven-
tion.
SEVERAL TIMES Watch has
been requested to go to specific
areas both by demonstrators
and police when a confrontation
loomed. As a result there have
been a few tense moments, but
no violence. The Yippie encamp-
ment, the target of police har-
rassment at previous conven-
tions, voted Monday night to
allow Watch observers to re-
main in their tent city by a
margin of more than six to one.
Leffingwell remarked, "Gen-
erally we have been delighted
with our reception. There have
l en a few complaints by peo-

ple about being ocserved, but
we have been specifically asked
to be in some places."
In order to maintain the im-
age of neutrality, Watch has
been selective about who it ac-
cepts donations from. As a re-
sult donations have been ac-
cepted from only church groups
and a limited number of indi-
viduals. The group has avoided
funds from the city to prevent
being accused of working with

the police.
"WE WANTED to be totally
independent from anyone on
both sides," Leffingwell said.
"While we have cooperated
with various groups we have
stayed neutral."
He added that plans original-
ly called for Watch to disband
following the convention but
now they are considering con-
tinual operation on a small
scale.

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