• Last updated on November 11, 2022

The Supreme Court ruled against a Virginia county that closed public schools rather than desegregate.

Contrary to the ruling in Brown v. Board of Education II (1955), Prince Edward County, Virginia, followed state law, closed its public schools, and provided tax credits and tuition grants to whites-only private schools. The Supreme Court unanimously rejected the county’s policies. In the opinion for the Court, Justice Hugo L. BlackBlack, Hugo L.;Griffin v. County School Board of Prince Edward County[Griffin v. County School Board of Prince Edward County] stated that time had “run out” for the “all deliberate speed” in desegregating schools called for in Brown II[case]Brown II[Brown II]. Black ruled that district courts could issue injunctions against the use of tuition tax credits and grants, control a noncomplying school board’s taxing and appropriating power, and reopen public schools on an integrated basis. Tom C. Clark and John M. Harlan II disagreed with the majority on these latter points, without saying why. This was the first hint of a break in the united wall that had been presented since the first Brown decision in 1954 and may have influenced the somewhat more guarded language used in Green v. County School Board of New Kent County[case]Green v. County School Board of New Kent County[Green v. County School Board of New Kent County] (1968).School integration and busing;Griffin v. County School Board of Prince Edward County[Griffin v. County School Board of Prince Edward County]

Brown v. Board of Education

Columbus Board of Education v. Penick

Desegregation

Equal protection clause

Fourteenth Amendment

Green v. County School Board of New Kent County

Milliken v. Bradley

Pasadena Board of Education v. Spangler

Plessy v. Ferguson

School integration and busing

Swann v. Charlotte-Mecklenburg Board of Education

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