Crossing the Line and Closing the Gap: Interdistrict Magnet Schools as Remedies for Segregation, Concentrated Poverty and Inequality

Anita Wadhwa

This working paper focuses on a remedy put forth by the state of Connecticut to end segregation in Connecticut’s schools, and on the efforts of the Capitol Regional Education Council (CREC) to create diversity through a nationally heralded interdistrict magnet school initiative. The interdistrict magnet school effort provides other organizations, individuals and school districts a powerful example of how to integrate students by economic class and race, in spite of recent limitations imposed by the U.S. Supreme Court. This paper begins with a discussion of the legal case that gave rise to the magnet schools and provides the context in which they now operate. It also offers a case study of CREC through a description of its operations and highlights two high-performing magnet schools. It is the second in a series of CHHIRJ papers exploring avenues toward diversity in K-12 public education.