Separate Is Never Equal: Sylvia Mendez and Her Family’s Fight for Desegregation

People, Identity & Culture
Race & Racism
Social Justice
Author(s):
Duncan Tonatiuh
Age Group:
6-10
Publisher:
Harry N. Abrams
ISBN:
978-1419710544
Year:
People, Identity & Culture
Race & Racism
Social Justice

When her family moves to the town of Westminster,California, young Sylvia Mendez is excited about enrolling in her neighborhood school. But she and her brothers are turned away and told they have to attend the Mexican school instead. Sylvia cannot understand why—she is an American citizen who speaks perfect English. Why are the children of Mexican families forced to attend a separate school? Unable to get a satisfactory answer from the school board, the Mendez family decides to take matters into their own hands and organize a lawsuit. In the end, the Mendez family’s efforts help bring an end to segregated schooling in Californiain 1947.

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