Americans weigh in on importance of racially mixed schools

More than half say students should go to schools in their local community, even if less diverseA new report from Pew Research Center delves into Americans’ views on racial and ethnic diversity in their workplaces, neighborhoods, and schools. The section focused on schools asked more than 6,500 respondents to weigh the value of having students attend racially and ethnically diverse schools against the value of attending schools in the local community. Slightly more than half of respondents (54%) said that attending a neighborhood school was more important than attending a diverse school.

Opinions on this question varied by race and along political party lines. White respondents (62%) were more likely to select neighborhood schools over diverse schools, while the reverse was true for Black respondents (with 68% preferring diverse schools). The strongest preference appeared among Republicans, with 73% choosing local schools over diverse schools, as opposed to 57% of Democrats who chose diverse schools. Among Democrats, Black respondents (71%) were much more likely to prefer diverse schools, with other groups showing a less pronounced preference (Hispanics, 56%; Asians, 55%; Whites, 52%).

Source: Horowitz, J.M. (2019, May 8). Americans see advantages and challenges in country’s growing racial and ethnic diversity. Washington, DC: Pew Research Center.


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