With All Deliberate Speed: The Legacy of Brown v. Board is an educational documentary film produced by non-profit media organzation Serviam Media, Inc and independent production company TELEDUCTION.
Program Treatment: This overview summarizes the style, themes and components of this project.
The Promise of Democracy...
May 17, 2004 marks the 50th anniversary of the Supreme Court's monumental decision in the cases collectively known as Brown v. Board of Education, which struck down the notion of "separate but equal" education and ended legalized segregation in America's public schools. The Brown petition represented six separate cases: in Kansas, South Carolina, Virginia, the District of Columbia and Delaware.
Referred to by many legal scholars as the "case of the century", Brown helped launch the civil rights movement that challenged America's race relations and social structure over the following decades. The legal precedent set in this groundbreaking case still serves as model for human rights activism throughout the world today.

But a half-century later, scholars and community leaders are still struggling to ensure that equal educational opportunities are indeed offered to all citizens. This essential study addresses the most pressing questions about race and ethnicity in America…then and now.

This program examines the unique legal strategies employed by the NAACP and the Legal Defense Fund, Inc., to combat school segregation in the courts, uncover the split public sentiment that fueled the social structure of the "Jim Crow" era, address the successes and failures in the implementation of desegregation, and most importantly, analyze the role of diversity and multicultural education in America today.

Community Outreach, Asking Important Questions:
An integral part of the program strategy is to extend the reach of the project into the community, promoting public dialogue by raising critical questions:

  • What is the role of race in education?
  • Why do discrepancies in achievement remain between whites and non-whites educated in public-school settings?
  • What is the value of diversity in education?
  • Is affirmative action still appropriate and/or necessary in today's society?
  • How are economic justice and civil rights linked?
Our Outreach Initiatives Include:
  • Curriculum Development
    We work hand in hand with national partners to identify, create and distribute curriculum compliant study guides, lesson plans, and teachers' instructions on how to incorporate With All Deliberate Speed into high school and college classrooms. These materials can be ordered on this website.
  • Community Engagement: Dialogues with Diversity
    Special film screenings, accompanied by facilitated community forums, accompany the broadcast of With All Deliberate Speed. We work with our partners at public television stations and cultural organizations to plan these events. Suggested agendas, debate topics, and implementation strategies developed with The National Conference for Community and Justice serve as models for events throughout the nation. We hope to foster a national public debate about race and ethnicity centered around the broadcast.

Raising Our Voices:
A core group of prestigious scholars provide analysis of the themes addressed in With All Deliberate Speed. Representing the nation's leading Universities, Civil Rights organizations, and educational institutions, these interviewees provide critical exploration of the history and current legacy of the Brown case.

 

The producers also visited a select group of state-funded universities and public high schools to interview students, and ascertain their perceptions regarding the dynamics of living and learning in diverse school environments, and a multicultural society. This essential analysis of the social, legal and educational relevance of the case, from a new generation of students, complements the analysis of our professional scholars.

Participating Scholars

  • Julian Bond - Chair, NAACP; Professor of History, University of Virginia
  • Jack Greenberg - Brown attorney, NAACP Legal Defense Fund; Columbia University Law School
  • Gary Orfield - Professor of Education and Social Policy; Co-founder, Civil Rights Project, Harvard University
  • Hon. Robert Carter - Brown attorney, NAACP Legal Defense Fund, U.S. District Court Judge
  • Mark V. Tushnet - Carmack Waterhouse Professor of Constitutional Law, Georgetown University
  • Leland Ware - L.L. Redding Chair for the Study of Law and Public Policy, University of Delaware
  • James Patterson - Ford Foundation Professor of History emeritus, Brown University
  • Genna Rae McNeil - University of North Carolina, Charles Houston Biographer
  • Bradley Skelcher - Professor of History, Delaware State University
  • Beverly Daniel Tatum - President, Spelman College
  • Jonathan Kozol - Author, "Savage Inequalities", "Amazing Grace"
  • James Oliver Horton - Benjamin Banneker Professor of American Studies and History, George Washington University