How Suburban Schools Are Struggling with Low-Income Students and Students of Color in Their Schools
Chapter 5. Oakwood Middle School: Teachers Who Can Connect but Don’t Expect Enough
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At first glance, Oakwood seems like many other suburban communities. It is mostly residential and quiet. There are detached homes with lawns as well as several churches and schools. Its one distinctive feature is its train stop. Few suburban communities in Barrow County have reliable public transportation into the city for work, but Oakwood is one of them. This unique feature is what originally attracted people to Oakwood.
Another distinctive feature of Oakwood is that it is solidly African American (84.7%). Only 8.7% are white, 3.7% Latino/Latina, and 2.4% Asian. Oakwood has been an African American enclave for some time. During the 1960s, black middle-class families began moving to Oakwood and its surrounding communities in large numbers because it was one of the few communities that did not have a restrictive covenant barring African Americans. Real-estate agents played a role in luring black families to the area, which was close to the city and had good public transportation, so that one could commute to work without owning a car. Soon black churches moved from the city into the area as well, solidifying the community as an African American center (Pietila, 2010).
← 93 | 94 →Oakwood is relatively large. According to census data, approximately 29,000 residents live in Oakwood. While not a wealthy community, Oakwood is much more middle class than suburban communities such as Lanfield. Most people work in government agencies, health care, and other offices. It has a $57,...
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