Equality of Resource Allocation


Research on this point will take some time. It is very clear that “colored” schools did not receive an amount of resources equal to white schools. To be researched are the questions of why, how much disparity existed and what efforts were made to correct the problem. Of particular importance is understanding the attitude of the School Board and its Superintendent. As for the Superintendent from 1917-1957, Mr. Oscar Emerick, it is clear from his own speeches and writings that he believed in segregation. Clearly with hindsight, we now understand the unfairness of the concept; but how did Mr. Emerick see himself and his duty to the African-American population with regard to “equality?”

One clue may be in a memo of November 29, 1944 to the members of the County School Board in which Emerick complained of prejudice. (Found in LCPS Archives: School Board Folder). The memo deals with various budgetary pressures, especially related to transportation and consolidation. On page 3, paragraph 7, Emerick made the following interesting point, that “we have housed most of our white school children in reasonably comfortable buildings, with central heating plants, drinking fountains, indoor toilets, etc. Nearly all colored elementary school children are housed in comparatively poor buildings. Very clearly there has been discrimination here. There is indicated to me the need for two consolidated elementary school for colored children. He also pointed out that is the School Board failed to act voluntarily over the following four years, they could expect to be required to do by court action. Equality Of Resources Discussion of 1944