This Dallas suburb [Plano, Texas], a wealthy enclave known for its top-notch schools, is struggling to integrate a flood of poor, minority students.
In a battle mirrored in other districts across the U.S., parents here have been fighting for months over which public high school their kids will attend: one under construction in an affluent corner of the Plano Independent School District, or an older school several miles away in the city’s more diverse downtown…
Plano’s situation evokes the fights decades ago in cities around the nation, when school integration often resulted in the flight of whites to suburbs.
This time, the disputes often are set in the suburbs themselves, driven by a flood of new arrivals—many from Latin America—who have rapidly reshaped school populations in districts across the country. The influx is making the country more diverse, with white children expected to be a minority by the next decade. That has meant more such conflicts in the most exclusive public-school districts.
“It’s going to be harder and harder to find a community that’s all white,” said Matthew Hall, a doctoral student at Pennsylvania State University who studies diversity in the suburbs. “The tensions that are happening in places like Plano are going to play out across all communities eventually.”
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