1949 July 15
Text of a decree issued by a federal judge ruling that DeWitt schools would be required to fund African American schools equally to white schools.
[Page 1] Text of Decree Rendered in the DeWitt
School Suit Prosecuted by Mr. Flowers
(See story on page one)
1- That all Negro children between the ages of six and 21 years
residing within the boundaries of DeWitt Special School District No.
1 of Arkansas county are entitled under the provisions of Section 2
of Amendment 14 to the Constitution of the United States and under
provisions of Section 1 of Article 14 of the Constitution of the State
of Arkansas rogether with Act 169 of the Arkansas Legislature for
1931, as amended (Ark. Stats 1947 80-509) to public educational facil-
ities substantially equal to those provided for white children within
said age group residing within the boundaries of said school district,
and that it is the duty of the defendants in this case and their suc-
cessors in office to provide such facilities.
2- That the public educational facilities now provided for Negro
children within the above mentioned age groups residing within said
school district are not substantially equal to the facilities furnished to
white children of school age residing within said district, and that
the defendants herein and their successors in office must proceed to
equalize said facilities of the Negro students or by reducing the
facilities offered to the white students.
3- That the defendants and their successors in office be and they
are hereby directed to equalize the lenght of school terms in the De-
Witt Negro elementary school (commonly known as the Key
school) with the length of the school terms in the DeWitt white
elementary school either by increasing the length of the school
term in the Negro school or by shortening the term in the white
school. Said defendants and their successors are further directed to
take steps to equalize the length of the school term for Negro students
attending teh Immanuel High School with the length of the school term
for white students attending the DeWitt High School either by
procuring the lenghtening of the high school term at the Immanuel
High School or by shortening the term at the DeWitt High School;
and it is further ordered that such length of terms be equalized,
beginning at the opening of the 1949-50 school session. Said defend-
ants and their successors in office are perpetually enjoined and
prohibited from maintaining in the public schoosl within their district
the policy of offering instruction for shorter annual terms than
those in which instruction is offered to white students, and are fur-
ther enjoined from requiring Negro students residing within the bound-
aries of their district to attend any school outside of said district where
the length of term is shorter than the length of the term offered to
white students within said district.
4- That the defendants and their successors in office be, and they
are hereby directed to effect within reasonable dispatch and within a
resonable time the following improvements in the physical plant
of the Negro elementary school at DeWitt, Arkansas;
(a) A connection with the sewer system of the City of DeWitt and
the installation of modern and adequate automatice flush toilets in-
side of the elementary school building.
(b) The installation of one or more indoor drinking fountains in
the Negro elementary school.
[Page 2] (c) The replacement of the desks in the classroom in the Key
School proper concerning which testimony was taken and a photo-
graph introduced at the trial of this case.
5- That the defendants and their successor sin office are hereby di-
rected to provide a reasonably safe and comfortable vehicle for the
transportation of Negro pupils from the DeWitt School Distrcit to the
Immanuel High School and to employ a regular driver to operate
6- That the defendants and their successors in office be, and they
are hereby directed to take steps in cooperation with the Board of
Directors of Immanuel School District No 70 of the Arkansas Coun-
ty, Ark. to bring the accreditation of the Immanuel High School up
from a grade "C" rating to a grade "A" rating.
7- That subject to the Privilege of completing the new elementary
school building for white students now under construction, the de-
fendants and their successors in office be, and they hereby are, en-
joined and restrained from constructing any new or additional
bulidings, structures or facilities for the education of white students
and from making capital improvements upon existing white school
buildings, structures or facilities, including the new white elementary
school at DeWitt when completed, until such time as the physical
plant of the Negro elementary school at DeWitt has been improv-
ed and brought into substantial equality with the physical plant of
the white elementary school, taking into consideration the comparative
average daily attendance of the students of each race in said elemen-
tary schools together with any other pertinent factors.
8- That if the defendants or their successors in office find it
necessary to raise additional funds, either by a bond issue or otherwise,
for the purpose of completing the new elementary school building for
white students in the City of DeWitt, and if they do in fact raise
such additional funds for such purpose, then in such event they are
enjoined from expending all of such funds so raised upon said new
elementary school system and the Negro elementary school system
such pro-ration to be based upon the comparative average attendance
of the students of each race in said elementary school systems, the
amount pro-rated to the white system to be used solely for the com-
pletion of said building and the amount allocated to the Negro
elementary school system to be used to improve the physical plant
of such system.
9- That the defendants and their successors in office be, and they
are hereby perpetually restrained and enjoined from henceforth
utlizing or expending any funds coming into their hands in such a
manner as to discriminate against the Negro school system or the
Negro students of the said school district.
10- That if the defendants and their successors in office shall find
it impossible for any reason to procure the advancement of the
Immanuel High School from a grade "C" rating to a grade "A"
rating within a reasonable time, they hereby are then directed to
make other arrangmenets whereby Negro high school students under
their jurisdiction may be served with high school facilities sub-
stantially equal to those furnished to white high school students and
reasonably accessible to such Negro high school students.
11- The costs of this action are hereby taxed against the defend-
ants in their official capacities, such costs to be paid by them out
of the funds of DeWitt Special School Distrct No. 1.
MFILM NEWS 363 Roll 3
Newspaper microfilm collection
Arkansas State Archives
Arkansas State Archives
Text of Decree Rendered in the DeWitt School Suit Prosecuted By Mr. Flowers, Arkansas State Press, July 15, 1949, Newspaper microfilm collection, Arkansas State Archives, Little Rock, Arkansas.
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