The Chicago Public Schools were almost totally segregated in the 1950’s when Gwen’s participated in an accelerated English program and first integrated a South Side High School. She succeeded in getting an “A” in the class but had an encounter with the police that threatened to overshadow her academic accomplishments.
- What were some of the factors that kept the city of Chicago from integrating its schools before the 1960s?
- Discuss some reasons why many young people endured hostility and violence to integrate schools and other facilities. How were they were able to overcome their fears?
- Why did Gwendolyn feel that she was representing her race when she attended the all white high school? Have you ever felt this kind of pressure?
- Have you, like Gwendolyn, made a decision to do something you know is not what you should? What were the consequences?
- Warriors Don’t Cry: A Searing Memoir of the Battle to Integrate Little Rock’s Central High by Melba Pattillo Beals (Ages 12 and up.)
- Through my Eyes: The Autobiography of Ruby Bridges by Ruby Bridges
- Ruby Bridges was a 6-year-old girl who helped end public school segregation in the South (Ages 9 and up.)
- Ruby Bridges The Movie (Part 1/9) HQ – YouTube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=klj5fgaKzIk
- African American/Black History
- Crossing Cultures
- Education and Life Lessons
- Family and Childhood
- Stereotypes and Discrimination