Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka, Kansas

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VI. Significance: The Court held that psychological understanding of the minds of young children at the time discounted the Court's holding in Plessy v. Ferguson and explicitly rejected the precedent set in Plessy, holding that the "separate but equal doctrine" has no place in the public education system.  This was a large step in the civil rights movement as the Supreme Court expressly denied the states the right to segregate public schools and in fact required their integration.

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"In approaching this problem, we cannot turn the clock back to 1868 when the Amendment was adopted, or even to 1896 when Plessy v. Ferguson was written. We must consider public education in the light of its full development and its present place in American life throughout the Nation.  Only in this way can it be determined if segregation in public schools deprives these plaintiffs of the equal protection of the laws." 

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"...there are findings below that the Negro and white schools involved have been equalized, or are being equalized with respect to buildings, curricula, qualifications and salaries of teachers, and other "tangible" factors."