Brown v Board of Education Interactive Distance Learning Event
The Brown v. Board of Education National Historical Site and the Kan-ed network at the Kansas Board of Regents, in partnership with the Great Plains Network and Internet2, will create a forum for virtual panelists who represent original plaintiffs and appellants or family members in the five cases consolidated in the historic Brown decision. This network enabled collaboration will enhance public dialogue and understanding of the historical significance of the Supreme Court’s decision in the Brown v. Board of Education case. This session will connect participating communities through videoconferencing to hear first hand accounts from the panelists and to explore the meaning of the landmark decision today. The presentation will also highlight local historical resources, share primary source accounts, and demonstrate how videoconferencing can be incorporated in teaching and learning to support inquiry, scholarship, and awareness.
The U.S. Supreme Court decision in Brown v. Board of Education (1954) is one of the most pivotal opinions ever rendered by that body. This landmark decision highlights the U.S. Supreme Court’s role in affecting changes in national and social policy. Often when people think of the case, they think of a court case brought about so that an African American student required to attend a segregated school could be accepted in attendance at an all-white school in her neighborhood. In reality, the story of Brown v. Board is far more complex.
In December, 1952, the U.S. Supreme Court had on its docket cases from Kansas, Delaware, the District of Columbia, South Carolina, and Virginia, all of which challenged the constitutionality of racial segregation in public schools. The U.S. Supreme Court had consolidated these five cases under one name, Oliver Brown et al. v. the Board of Education of Topeka. One of the justices later explained that the U.S. Supreme Court felt it was better to have representative cases from different parts of the country. They decided to put Brown first “so that the whole question would not smack of being a purely Southern one.”
Tuesday, February 24, 2009 from 9:00 AM - 11:00 AM (CT)
Panelists participating by videoconference
Nathaniel Briggs - representing his family who were plaintiffs in the Briggs v. Elliot case in South Carolina.
Brigitte Brown - daughter of Ethel Belton will share perspective from her family member's experiences in the Delaware case.
Brumit B. De Laine - representing his father, Rev. DeLaine, who was the case organizer for the South Carolina case.
Charles Scott, Jr. - is the son of the Topeka attorney who served as counsel on the Brown, et al, v Board of Education of Topeka case.
Alonzo Smith, Ph.D. - Professor of History at Montgomery College and has served as one of two curators for the Smithsonian Institution's exhibit observing the 50th Anniversary of the Supreme Court decision in Brown, et. al v. Board of Education of Topeka.
John Stokes - one of the original Moton High School student strike organizers in the Virginia Case. Click on the following link to view a recent CNN interview with Mr. Stokes about his experiences growing up in the civil rights era and the book he has authored, Students on Strike. 
You can register for interactive or streaming video here.
For more information
Linda Rosenblum - Education Specialist, Brown v. Board of Education National Historical Site, National Park Service at (785) 354-4273 or by email at Linda_Rosenblum@nps.gov 
Interactive Web Site and Resources
Please visit the K12 Web Site for a list of resources as well as an interactive site for students to contribute: