More than 80 percent of New Jerseyans say their local school districts include a mix of races, while 14 percent say their local schools are segregated.
That’s despite research that has found high levels of segregation of black and Latin-American students in the Garden State, according to a Rutgers-Eagleton/Fairleigh Dickinson University polling partnership, in collaboration with Fairleigh Dickinson University’s School of Public and Global Affairs.
Almost half of respondents report students in their district represent a variety of racial and ethnic backgrounds. Another third, however, say the students at their local schools are mostly white, and almost one in five say their local schools are mostly black or members of another race.
“Despite being one of the most diverse states in the country, research shows New Jersey has the sixth-highest level of segregation of black students and the seventh-highest level for Latin-American students,” said Ashley Koning, assistant research professor and director of the Eagleton Center for Public Interest Polling at Rutgers University–New Brunswick. “Yet most residents’ perceptions seem at odds with reality, except for those who may experience it firsthand due to their own race, ethnicity, or economic status.”
The Rutgers-Eagleton/Fairleigh Dickinson University Poll of New Jerseyans contacted 1,250 adults between March 7 and 22, 2019.