This blog accompanies the Policy Forum on the 1966 Coleman Report published in History of Education Quarterly.

For this History of Education Quarterly Policy Forum, we look at the historical significance of the 1966 Coleman Report from several different perspectives. The four main essays published here originated as presentations for a session on “Legacies of the Coleman Report in US Thought and Culture” at the History of Education Society annual meeting in Providence, Rhode Island, in November 2016. Presenters for that session— Zoë Burkholder, Victoria Cain, Leah Gordon, and Ethan Hutt—went on to participate in an HES-sponsored session entitled “Currents in Egalitarian Thought in the 1960s and 1970s: The Coleman Report in American Politics, Media, and Social Science” at the Organization of American Historians meeting in New Orleans in April 2017. Thinking that their reflections on the reception and influence of the Coleman Report in different contexts would be of broad interest to HEQ readers, we asked members of the panel to comment on each other’s papers and revise them for this Forum. We then invited Harvey Kantor of the University of Utah and Robert Lowe of Marquette University to write an introduction summarizing the origins and findings of the Coleman Report, along with their own assessment of what the presenters’ essays teach us about its long-term significance. What follows are Kantor and Lowe’s Introduction, “What Difference Did the Coleman Report Make?,” together with substantive essays by Zoë Burkholder of Montclair State University, Victoria Cain of Northeastern University, Leah Gordon of Amherst College, and Ethan Hutt of the University of Maryland.

Articles in the Forum listed below will be freely available until 15th January 2018:


Main image credit: African American children on the way to P.S. 204 in Brooklyn, New York, pass mothers protesting the busing of children to achieve integration, September 13, 1965. (LC-USZ62-134434, New York World-Telegram and the Sun Newspaper Photograph Collection, Library of Congress, Prints and Photographs Division, Washington, DC.) The image appears in Zoë Burkholder’s article.

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