A new tentative agreement was reached Friday in the long-running Sheff vs. Oâ€™Neill school desegregation case.
Sheff plaintiffs have argued for years that the stateâ€™s patchwork approach to the Supreme Court mandate to provide quality, integrated education for Hartfordâ€™s schoolchildren has not worked fast enough. And they say the state has never been able to meet the demand of Hartford families. Matthew Colangelo of the NAACP legal defense fund is a member of the Sheff team.
"Under this new agreementâ€¦if youâ€™re a parent or a student in the Hartford public schools and you want the opportunity to attend an integrated school, the state has to make that opportunity available to you."
There would be an expansion of the program offering seats in suburban public schools to Hartfordâ€™s minority children. Also, more magnet schools would be built in the suburbs. The agreement does not specify costs, but says the state will allocate sufficient resources to implement the goals of the settlement. The agreement requires the approval of Connecticutâ€™s General Assembly.