Educational Leadership


What will you think of me? Racial integration, peer relationships and achievement among white students and students of color

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The Society for the Psychological Study of Social Issues / John Wiley & Sons, Inc.


Brown v. Board of Education (1954) emphasized that segregation in schools leads the stigmatized students to withdraw from and lower their educational and professional aspirations. I consider this process in a modern sample by examining the relationship between the number of friends students report having at school and their goals and plans and their enjoyment of achievement activities in a sample of elementary and middle school students (N= 80). Students of color were more isolated at school, and this isolation was negatively correlated with interest in academic work. Among White students, however, no relationship between social isolation and interest in academic work was found. Discussion focuses on the role of the social climate in fostering or inhibiting achievement among students of color.