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Judge Rejects Desegregation Of Latin Schools

May 25, 1985

BOSTON (AP) _ A judge has rejected a proposal that would have required the city’s prestigious Latin schools to enroll more blacks and Hispanics in order to reflect the racial composition of the school system.

U.S. District Judge J. Arthur Garrity, who ordered Boston’s school desegregation and still oversees parts of the system’s operations, cited the ″importance of maintaining the high educational standards at the exam schools.″

″The major factor in the underrepresentation of black and Hispanic students appears to be the inadequate preparation of Boston public school students for admission to the Latins, in comparison to preparation for the entrance examinations of students receiving their pre-secondary training in private and parochial school,″ Garrity ruled Friday.

″To subject unprepared students to the demanding program at the Latins may be a disservice to the students as well as the schools.″

Black and Hispanic plaintiffs in the 11-year-old Boston school desegregation case had claimed that disproportionate white enrollments at Boston Latin School and Boston Latin Academy made it difficult to desegregate other Boston schools.

Latin School has a 57 percent white enrollment. Latin Academy, formerly Girls’ Latin, is 48 percent white. The Boston public school system is about 50 percent black, 30 percent white and 20 percent Hispanic.

A third school with an entrance examination, Boston Technical High School, would not have been affected by the plaintiffs’ proposal because its enrollment is 50 percent black.

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