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ERIC Number: EJ763286
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2005
Pages: 6
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-1539-9664
Magnet Schools: No Longer Famous, but Still Intact
Rossell, Christine H.
Education Next, v5 n2 p44-49 Spr 2005
It was in 1968, when Martin Luther King had been assassinated, and American cities were erupting in flames because of King's violent death and the decades-long smoldering resentments from racism, that the nation's first "magnet" school opened in Tacoma, Washington. The following year, 1969, the country's second magnet school opened--this one, more appropriately, in Boston, soon to be an epicenter of the race-based school wars. Within a decade there would be hundreds of such magnet schools all over the country. The idea was simple enough: draw white students to predominantly black schools by offering a special education with a focus on a particular aspect of the curriculum, such as performing arts, or Montessori, or advanced math, science, and technology. Federal and state agencies, anxious to avoid the growing messiness of coercive integration measures like forced busing, directed new resources toward these magnets, encouraging their pioneering academic programs and giving grants for new facilities. The hope was that these well-funded, themed schools would ignite a passion for learning as well as spark a movement to voluntarily integrate schools. In this article, the author outlines the history of the first magnets and describes how magnet schools remain whole despite the reduction in state funding and the elimination of explicit racial quotas. (Contains 2 figures.)
Hoover Institution. Stanford University, Stanford, CA 94305-6010. Tel: 800-935-2882; Fax: 650-723-8626; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Washington