# Please Welcome Mrs. Thelma Mothershed-Wair

As a result of the growing popularity of this unit, the students wrote countless letters to the superintendent of our district trying to get him to extend an invitation to one of the Little Rock Nine to come and visit our school district. And their effort and interest in this project did not go unnoticed.  The superintendent agreed and as a result of that, Thelma Mothershed-Wair paid a visit to the Winston-Salem/Forsyth county schools yesterday and taught the students using a very interesting method.  Mrs. Mothershed-Wair is a teacher in Belleville, Illnois and was very pleased to come and speak to our students about this topic.  When we invited her to come and speak to us, we asked her our focus question of the unit: was integration a failure?  She developed a lesson in which she met with our classes, as well as the classes from two other schools in the district.  She used the following data to help the students complete her activity and from this lesson, they were able to draw new conclusions about integration and the success and failure of this idea.  Below is the sample assignment sheet that Mrs. Mothershed-Wair brought with her and a sample sheet that was filled out from a student in each of the three different schools in the workshop.  This activity is trying to get students to question the racial balance of their schools and their districts (Armor and Rossell 219-56)

K. Lambeth

Student Name: _________________

School: _______________________

County: _______________________

Race/Ethnicity: _________________

Who Do You Sit Beside Of In Class?

Do you think that your school is racially diverse?

Let’s take a look at the demographics of your school. Use the handout to determine the correct number for each blank.

Total number of students in your school: _____

Asian/ Pacific Islander: _____

Black: _____

Hispanic: _____

Multiracial: _____

White: _____

Now, let’s look at the demographics of your school district/county. Once again, use the handout to determine the correct number for each blank.

Total number of students in your school: _____

Asian/ Pacific Islander: _____

Black: _____

Hispanic: _____

Multiracial: _____

White: _____

Based on those numbers, do you think that your school represents the county/community as a whole? Why or why not?

Consider this: According to New York Times, there is a school district/county that is 53% white.  However, at the local elementary school, white enrollment has declined from 40% in 1995 to 24% in 1998.  What are your thoughts on these statistics? Does this surprise you at all?

With the statistics that you have complied and have been given, argue whether or not you think that integration (having racially diverse schools) has been a success in the United States

Student Name: Jake

School: Kernersville Middle School

County: Winston-Salem/ Forsyth County

Race/Ethnicity: White

Who Do You Sit Beside Of In Class?

Do you think that your school is racially diverse? I would say that my school is pretty diverse. I mean, we have some black kids, Hispanic kids, and even this one Indian dude on the football team.

Let’s take a look at the demographics of your school. Use the handout to determine the correct number for each blank.

Total number of students in your school: 759

Asian/ Pacific Islander: 11             1.4%

Black: 69               9.1%

Hispanic: 115      15.2%

Multiracial: 29    3.8%

White: 534          70.4%

Now, let’s look at the demographics of your school district/county. Once again, use the handout to determine the correct number for each blank.

Total number of students in your school: 52393

Asian/ Pacific Islander: 1214   2.3%

Black: 15735   30%

Hispanic: 9779   18.7%

Multiracial: 2283   4.4%

White: 23236   44.3%

Based on those numbers, do you think that your school represents the county/community as a whole? Why or why not? I don’t guess we do. I mean we have too many white people for what is in our county.

Consider this: According to New York Times, there is a school district/county that is 53% white.  However, at the local elementary school, white enrollment has declined from 40% in 1995 to 24% in 1998.  What are your thoughts on these statistics? Does this surprise you at all?  It probably would have before today. But, I guess it’s kind of like my school but instead of having mostly white people, they have mostly black people.

With the statistics that you have complied and have been given, argue whether or not you think that integration (having racially diverse schools) has been a success in the United States.  I think we don’t have diverse school because my school just has mostly white people, with just a few other ethnicities thrown in there.

Student Name: Carlos

School: East Forsyth Middle School

County: Winston-Salem/ Forsyth County

Race/Ethnicity: Hispanic

Who Do You Sit Beside Of In Class?

Do you think that your school is racially diverse? I guess you could say my school is diverse.  There are a bunch of different types of people and when you are in class, there is never only one race.

Let’s take a look at the demographics of your school. Use the handout to determine the correct number for each blank.

Total number of students in your school: 774

Asian/ Pacific Islander: 6               .8%

Black: 272            35.1%

Hispanic: 110      14.2%

Multiracial: 27    3.5%

White: 347          44.8%

Now, let’s look at the demographics of your school district/county. Once again, use the handout to determine the correct number for each blank.

Total number of students in your school: 52393

Asian/ Pacific Islander: 1214   2.3%

Black: 15735   30%

Hispanic: 9779   18.7%

Multiracial: 2283   4.4%

White: 23236   44.3%

Based on those numbers, do you think that your school represents the county/community as a whole? Why or why not? I think we match up with the county.  We pretty much have the right number of each group that the county had.

Consider this: According to New York Times, there is a school district/county that is 53% white.  However, at the local elementary school, white enrollment has declined from 40% in 1995 to 24% in 1998.  What are your thoughts on these statistics? Does this surprise you at all?  It surprises me a little. I mean, where are all those white people going anyway?

With the statistics that you have complied and have been given, argue whether or not you think that integration (having racially diverse schools) has been a success in the United States.  I think we are pretty racially diverse- at least in my school.  But one guy in my group has too many white people and the other guy has too many black people, so I guess maybe we’re not very diverse.

Student Name: Tyron

School: Mineral Springs Middle School

County: Winston-Salem/ Forsyth County

Race/Ethnicity: Black

Who Do You Sit Beside Of In Class?

Do you think that your school is racially diverse? Not really. I mean there are a few white people and a bunch of Hispanics, but that’s about it.

Let’s take a look at the demographics of your school. Use the handout to determine the correct number for each blank.

Total number of students in your school: 774

Asian/ Pacific Islander: 2               .4%

Black: 261            49.7%

Hispanic: 203      38.7%

Multiracial: 25    4.8%

White: 34             6.5%

Now, let’s look at the demographics of your school district/county. Once again, use the handout to determine the correct number for each blank.

Total number of students in your school: 52393

Asian/ Pacific Islander: 1214   2.3%

Black: 15735   30%

Hispanic: 9779   18.7%

Multiracial: 2283   4.4%

White: 23236   44.3%

Based on those numbers, do you think that your school represents the county/community as a whole? Why or why not? Nah, we don’t have enough white people.

Consider this: According to New York Times, there is a school district/county that is 53% white.  However, at the local elementary school, white enrollment has declined from 40% in 1995 to 24% in 1998.  What are your thoughts on these statistics? Does this surprise you at all?  No, apparently they don’t want to go to school with us.

With the statistics that you have complied and have been given, argue whether or not you think that integration (having racially diverse schools) has been a success in the United States.  I don’t think that we are diverse at all. Most schools are just mainly one ethnic group. And even if they do have different groups in the school- people still hang out with their own kind.