Decision Date29 August 1969
Docket NumberCiv. A. No. C-1499.
Citation303 F. Supp. 289
PartiesWilfred KEYES, individually and on behalf of Christi Keyes, a minor, et al., Plaintiffs, v. SCHOOL DISTRICT NUMBER ONE, DENVER, COLORADO, et al., Defendants.
CourtU.S. District Court — District of Colorado

Barnes & Jensen, by Craig S. Barnes, Gerald L. Jensen, Holland & Hart, by Gordon G. Greiner, Lawrence W. Treece, Robert T. Connery, Denver, Colo., for plaintiffs.

Henry, Cockrell, Quinn & Creighton, by Richard C. Cockrell, Victor Quinn, Thomas E. Creighton, Benjamin L. Craig, Michael Jackson, Denver, Colo., for defendants, except John H. Amesse, James D. Voorhees, Jr., and Rachel B. Noel, as individuals.

Order Reinstated August 29, 1969. See 90 S.Ct. 12.


WILLIAM E. DOYLE, District Judge.

This case is before the Court following remand issued by the United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit on August 7, 1969. In its opinion the Court of Appeals (1) questioned the sufficiency in terms of specificity of our injunctive order, and (2) directed that this Court consider Title IV, § 407(a) of the 1964 Civil Rights Act, 42 U.S.C. § 2000c-6(a).

A hearing was held on August 7, 1969. The Court, having heard the arguments, does hereby issue a more specific injunctive order. The question of the applicability of the above mentioned statute will be considered in a supplemental opinion. Also, the following supplemental findings are added to the oral findings of fact given from the bench on July 23, 1969, and the formal findings of fact contained in this Court's opinion issued on the 31st day of July, 1969. The findings hereinafter set forth are directed to the schools which received particular attention at the trial. These findings undertake to describe the special circumstances surrounding these particular schools, and the conclusions which are to be drawn from these findings.


Barrett Elementary School (Located at East 29th Avenue and Jackson Street.)

1. Barrett Elementary School was opened in 1960. At that time its student body was 89.6 percent Negro. Presently the racial composition of Barrett is virtually 100 percent minority students (93% Negro, 7% Hispano). Thus, from the time of its establishment until the present Barrett has always been a segregated school.

2. The average percentage of Negro teachers in elementary schools in School District No. 1 as of September 1968 was 8.5 percent. In Barrett school the percentage of Negro teachers is 52.6 percent. This concentration of Negro teachers in a "Negro" school has further contributed to the categorization of Barrett as a segregated school.

3. Between 1950 and 1960 the Negro population, which previously had been concentrated in an area known as "Five Points" began to expand to the east. By 1960 it had moved up to Colorado Boulevard, a natural dividing line. This trend of population was apparent long before the migration of the Negro population eastward to Colorado Boulevard was completed. With full knowledge of this population trend and the fact that Barrett would be a segregated school from the time of its establishment, the Board proceeded with and carried into effect the plans for the building of that school.

4. At the time that Barrett was built, the School Board created the eastern boundary of the Barrett district along Colorado Boulevard. Thus, the eastern boundary of Barrett school district was made coterminous with the eastern boundary of Negro population movement at that time. This insured the character of Barrett as a segregated school.

5. When Barrett was built, Stedman Elementary School, in a predominantly white area east of Colorado Boulevard a few blocks from the Barrett site, was operating at approximately 20 percent over capacity. Had the eastern boundary of the Barrett district been set to the east of Colorado Boulevard, it would have resulted in some integration of Barrett, while alleviating somewhat the overcrowded conditions at Stedman. By establishing Colorado Boulevard as the eastern boundary of the Barrett district, the Board declined to utilize Barrett to achieve these salutary effects. Furthermore, Barrett was built as a relatively small school (capacity 450) which further prevented its use to relieve overcrowded conditions in the neighboring "white" Stedman. Thus, Barrett was built and opened as a segregated school.

6. In light of the facts as they existed in 1960, there can be no doubt that the positive acts of the Board in establishing Barrett and defining its boundaries were the proximate cause of the segregated condition which has existed in that school since its creation, which condition exists at present.

7. The action by the Board with respect to the creation of Barrett school was taken with knowledge of the consequences, and these consequences were not merely possible, they were substantially certain. Under such conditions we find that the Board acted purposefully to create and maintain segregation at Barrett.

8. The Board maintained the segregated condition which it had created at Barrett by failing to take any action to correct it between 1960 and 1969. On April 24, 1969, the Board passed Resolution 1531 (operative September 1969) which would have desegregated Barrett by altering school district boundaries. Prior to the passage of Resolution 1531, Barrett was 93 percent Negro and 7 percent Hispano. The racial composition in that school subsequent to implementation of 1531 would have been 73 percent Anglo, 24 percent Negro, 3 percent Hispano.

9. On June 9, 1969, the Board, by a 4 to 3 vote, rescinded Resolution 1531 and thereby reaffirmed its prior policy of maintaining and perpetuating segregation at Barrett. Although this was carried out in response to what was called a voter mandate in a school board election, there can be no doubt that the purpose and effect of the action was segregation.

Stedman Elementary School (This school is located at East 29th Avenue and Dexter Street, approximately 8 blocks east of Barrett Elementary School.)

1. Stedman Elementary School was in 1960 a predominantly "white" school, the student body being only 4 percent Negro. However, as a result of Negro population trends and rigid adherence to school boundaries by the Board, by 1962 Stedman was 50-65 percent Negro.

2. In 1962 and for several years prior thereto, Stedman had been overcrowded. Although Stedman could not be considered a segregated school at that time, it was clear by virtue of area population movement that it would become segregated in the near future if immediate steps were not taken to alleviate the overcrowding and stabilize the racial composition. Seven boundary changes were proposed in 1962, three of which would have relieved overcrowding at Stedman by placing the overflow in Smith, Hallett, and Park Hill, each of which was predominantly Anglo at that time. The Board rejected the three Stedman proposals, adopting the other four which pertained to areas with Negro populations of less than three percent. By refusing to pass the proposed boundary changes for Stedman, overcrowding was perpetuated and Negro students at that school were prevented from attending nearby "Anglo" schools.

3. By 1963 Stedman was only 18.6 percent Anglo and was still overcrowded. In 1964, the Board adopted several boundary changes, two of which had the immediate effect of aggravating the segregated situation at Stedman by transferring predominantly Anglo portions of the Stedman district to other "white" schools in the area. First, a predominantly "white" portion of the Stedman zone was detached to Hallett. Second, the Park Hill-Stedman optional zone was transferred to Park Hill. This area was approximately 96 percent Anglo, and represented that part of the Stedman district with the lowest Negro population. These changes did not significantly reduce overcrowding at Stedman. Rather, they tended to further segregate Stedman by removing the option open to many Anglo students to attend Stedman and preventing Negro students at that school from attending the predominantly Anglo schools in Park Hill.

4. Between May 1964 and May 1965, four mobile units were placed at Stedman to relieve the overcrowded conditions. This, like the previous actions of the Board with respect to school boundaries in the Stedman district, had the effect of preserving the Anglo character of certain Park Hill schools and the segregated status of Stedman.

5. As of 1968, Stedman was 94.6 percent Negro and 3.9 percent Anglo. On April 24, 1969, the School Board passed Resolution 1531 which was designed to alleviate the containment of Negro students in Stedman which had resulted from the Board's conscious efforts to preserve the Anglo character of other Park Hill schools. While 1531 would not have substantially reduced the percentage of Negro students at Stedman, it did provide that an additional 120 Negro children were to be transported from Stedman to predominantly Anglo schools (prior to this time 286 Stedman students were being bussed to Force, Schenck, and Denison schools). This would have provided an additional outlet for Negro children at Stedman, enabling them to attend a racially integrated school, and at the same time would have removed the need for the four mobile units. This was designed to relieve and mitigate the intense segregation condition at Stedman as well as to relieve overcrowding.

6. On June 9, 1969, the School Board repealed Resolution 1531. The natural and probable consequence of the Board's action was to continue the containment of Negro students at Stedman and to reassign Negro children who would have attended an integrated school under Resolution 1531 to the segregated Stedman.

7. The actions of the Board with respect to boundary changes, installation of mobile units and repeal of Resolution 1531 shows a continuous affirmative policy designed...

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