Northern Virginia, May 24, 2019: Eyes wide open: Jane Elliott to speak about gentrification at D.C. elementary school
On June 4, Anne Beers Elementary is set to host the 85-year-old former public school teacher and current diversity educator for an experimental masterclass with students, parents, educators and the community. The event’s inspiration originated with parents from the school who wished to lead a conversation about DC’s gentrification over the past two decades.
Gentrification is the policy-driven process of displacing residents of low-income urban communities, commonly close to large metropolitan areas, to be replaced with public and private sector infrastructure that raises property values, accommodating white and higher-paying residents. It results in known, unequal distribution of neighborhood value and resources, heavily benefiting those who are of higher financial status and mostly incoming white residents.
According to a study conducted by the National Community Reinvestment Coalition, D.C. was identified as the most gentrified city from 2000 to 2013. An estimated 20,000 black residents were displaced due to gentrification, widely impacting local schools and neighborhoods with a growing lack of low-income housing options for minorities, as well as hindering diversity in schools.