As cities gentrify and schools diversify, PTOs grapple to ensure all parent voices are heard

Mike Dixon left his first visit to his son’s new school deflated. The Dixons had scored a seat at a Chinese-language charter school in the District that families clamor to attend.

His children would be attending a diverse public school — a rarity in a city where most schools are segregated and the student population is overwhelmingly black.

But when Dixon attended a school open house in 2012, he was one of the few black parents in the room. And when he returned for an evening parent meeting, he was again one of the only black parents. He believed he didn’t belong, so he stopped attending.


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