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Brown v. Board of Education, United States Supreme Court (1954)
Offline Student Instructions 

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In 1954, the Supreme Court’s decision in Brown v. Board of Education overturned the Plessy v. Ferguson ruling that had established the doctrine of “separate but equal” as constitutional (see Background Information). In the 1950s, parents of African American children in four different states sued on behalf of their children who were forced to go to “colored” schools that the parents considered inferior to those available to white children in the same area. One of these parents was Oliver Brown whose daughter Linda Brown attended school in Topeka, Kansas. His name was listed first on the suit filed in Kansas and the case came to bear his name and that of Board of Education in Topeka, Kansas.

For this activity, all students involved in this case will be looking at the court's decision. From that decision, students will determine what arguments each side might have used to convince the court. The third group will take the role of the judges and develop a list of questions the judges would need answered to be able to make this decision. When each group has finished, the judges will ask those questions of the plaintiff and defendants and then read their decision.

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