Case: Hill v. Board of Education of Franklin County

63-00668 | U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Tennessee

Filed Date: July 2, 1963

Clearinghouse coding complete

Case Summary

On July 2, 1963, the plaintiffs filed this desegregation lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Tennessee. The plaintiffs, both African-American and white minor school children, by and through their parents, sued the defendant Franklin County Board of Education to enjoin the operation of a segregated school system. They were represented by, among others, Jack Greenberg for the NAACP Legal Defense Fund.On September 30, 1963, the district court (Judge Charles Neese) ordere…

On July 2, 1963, the plaintiffs filed this desegregation lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Tennessee. The plaintiffs, both African-American and white minor school children, by and through their parents, sued the defendant Franklin County Board of Education to enjoin the operation of a segregated school system. They were represented by, among others, Jack Greenberg for the NAACP Legal Defense Fund.

On September 30, 1963, the district court (Judge Charles Neese) ordered the Board to submit a plan for desegregation and to reorganize the district schools. Two months later, on December 30, Judge Neese issued a preliminary injunction requiring the Board to reorganize part of the district, including assignments to two schools in particular, on a non-racial basis. After further negotiations, the district court, on March 2, 1964, ordered the Board to produce a more comprehensive desegregation plan with student assignment and geographical zoning. The plaintiffs challenged the school board's plan, but on June 23, 1964, the district court largely approved the plan -- although it did order some modifications, especially in the areas of faculty integration and transportation. Hill v. County Board of Education of Franklin County, Tenn., 232 F.Supp. 671 (E.D. Tenn. June 23, 1964).

After the district court's decision, the Board submitted various modified plans, which Judge Neese approved. Then, on April 17, 1964, the district court retired the case from the active docket.

On July 20, 1966, two African-American teachers in the school district sought to intervene in the lawsuit and reactivate it, contending both that the Board had discriminated against them in hiring/firing decisions. On September 30, 1966, the district court ruled in favor of one of the plaintiffs but against the other. Shortly thereafter, the district court ordered the Board to adopt and implement specific (and race-neutral) standards for the hiring and firing of teachers.

(On a separate but related note: There was a separate lawsuit, not part of this original desegregation case, filed in 1984, from a football coach alleging racial discrimination in the hiring of a football coach at a district high school. See Lujan v. Franklin County Board of Education, 584 F.Supp. 279 (E.D. Tenn. Apr. 9, 1984); Lujan v. Franklin County Board of Education, 766 F.2d 917 (6th Cir. June 17, 1985) (affirming)).

Unfortunately, we were unable to locate any more information about this case after the faculty desegregation plan of 1968. Presumably, the Board continued to operate under the various desegregation plans agreed to during that time. According to ProPublica, as of 2014, the Board remains under court order.

Available Opinions

Hill v. County Board of Education of Franklin County, Tenn., 232 F.Supp. 671 (E.D. Tenn. June 23, 1964)

Hill v. Franklin County Board of Education, 390 F.2d 583 (6th Cir. Feb. 20, 1968)

Summary Authors

Greg Margolis (3/7/2017)

People


Judge(s)

Cecil, Lester LeFevre (Ohio)

Celebrezze, Anthony Joseph (Ohio)

Combs, Bertram Thomas (Ohio)

Neese, Charles Gelbert (Tennessee)

Attorneys(s) for Plaintiff

Charlotte, Avon Williams (Tennessee)

Greenberg, Jack (New York)

Looby, Z. Alexander (Tennessee)

Motley, Constance Baker (New York)

Attorneys(s) for Defendant

Lynch, Pat B. (Tennessee)

Other Attorney(s)

Active

Judge(s)

Cecil, Lester LeFevre (Ohio)

Celebrezze, Anthony Joseph (Ohio)

Combs, Bertram Thomas (Ohio)

Neese, Charles Gelbert (Tennessee)

Attorneys(s) for Plaintiff

Charlotte, Avon Williams (Tennessee)

Greenberg, Jack (New York)

Looby, Z. Alexander (Tennessee)

Motley, Constance Baker (New York)

Attorneys(s) for Defendant

Lynch, Pat B. (Tennessee)

Other Attorney(s)

Nabrit, James M. III (New York)

Documents in the Clearinghouse

Document

63-00668

Docket (pre-PACER)

March 17, 1970

March 17, 1970

Docket

63-00668

[Order]

Hill v. County Board of Franklin County, Tennessee

U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Tennessee

July 23, 1964

July 23, 1964

Order/Opinion

17647

17648

17649

[Order]

Hill v. Franklin County Board of Education

U. S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit

Feb. 20, 1968

Feb. 20, 1968

Order/Opinion

Docket

Last updated Aug. 29, 2022, 3:07 a.m.

Docket sheet not available via the Clearinghouse.

Case Details

State / Territory: Tennessee

Case Type(s):

School Desegregation

Key Dates

Filing Date: July 2, 1963

Case Ongoing: Perhaps, but long-dormant

Plaintiffs

Plaintiff Description:

African-American minor children, by and through their parents, who attended the Franklin County, TN, school system; two African-American teachers in the district.

Plaintiff Type(s):

Private Plaintiff

Attorney Organizations:

NAACP Legal Defense Fund

Public Interest Lawyer: Yes

Filed Pro Se: No

Class Action Sought: Yes

Class Action Outcome: Granted

Defendants

Franklin County, School District

Defendant Type(s):

Elementary/Secondary School

Case Details

Causes of Action:

42 U.S.C. § 1983

Constitutional Clause(s):

Equal Protection

Availably Documents:

Trial Court Docket

Injunctive (or Injunctive-like) Relief

Any published opinion

Outcome

Prevailing Party: Plaintiff

Nature of Relief:

Injunction / Injunctive-like Settlement

Source of Relief:

Settlement

Litigation

Form of Settlement:

Court Approved Settlement or Consent Decree

Order Duration: 1963 - None

Content of Injunction:

Discrimination Prohibition

Monitoring

Other requirements regarding hiring, promotion, retention

Preliminary relief granted

Reporting

Student assignment

Issues

General:

Disparate Treatment

Education

Discrimination-basis:

Race discrimination

Race:

Black

Type of Facility:

Government-run