Racism and Public Education

Luke S. Tripp, St. Cloud State University

Presented at the "Race in 21st Century America" conference held at Michigan State University, Lansing, Michigan, on April 4-6, 2007.


This essay argues that the U.S. public school system is structured along racial and social class lines determined by powerful political and economic forces, and that there is a racial and class tracking system in public education that reproduces the race and class structure of the society. Further, it describes how schools play a principal role in perpetuating ideological racism through a social studies curriculum that is designed to promote white supremacy by distorting American history in such a way that it portrays whites as agents of progress and builders of civilizations and Blacks as insignificant objects or deficient characters.