Law: Bus Pact

St. Louis desegregates

Like Boston, St. Louis was slapped with a school-desegregation suit in 1972. But unlike Boston, where Judge Garrity forced busing two years later, St. Louis was not compelled to adopt a mandatory busing plan for some 7,000 of its 59,000 students until 1980. By then, after a decade of white flight to the suburbs, the school system had become nearly 80% black, making it impossible to achieve racial balance in the classrooms. The St. Louis school board charged that the transfer and consolidation policies of suburban St. Louis County schools, 80% of whose students were white, had helped reinforce...

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