Looking back at Little Rock: At HLS, Justice Breyer and nine appellate justices revisit Cooper v. Aaron

The U.S. Supreme Court ruling mandating school desegregation in Brown v. Board of Education in 1954 is considered one of the Court’s landmark decisions. But the implementation of federal law prohibiting state-mandated school desegregation required a subsequent ruling in 1958, in Cooper v. Aaron, in which the Court held that states could not avoid desegregation by legislative action.

The Charles Hamilton Houston Institute for Race and Justice sponsored atwo-day conference looking back at Cooper v. Aaron and the impact it’s had on law and education over the course of 55 years. The event brought together legal scholars, students, and civil-rights lawyers and featured a moot court proceeding involving U.S. Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer and nine appellate judges, to revisit the legal questions raised by Cooper.