Digital Commonwealth

Press Conference

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Press Conference
In 1964, despite a year of sustained efforts by the NAACP, parents, and other civil rights activists, the Boston Public Schools remained racially segregated and negotiations with the Boston School Committee continued to be futile. The Citizens for Human Rights (CHR), the group that organized the Boston’s successful 1963 Stay Out for Freedom, evolved into the Massachusetts Freedom Movement (MFM) and again led by Reverend James Breeden and Noel Day, organized another Stay Out campaign for February 26, 1964. The 1964 Stay Out, however, was also part of an emerging a national school boycott movement against segregated schools in the North, including similar demonstrations in New York, Chicago, Cleveland, and Milwaukee. WGBH-FM covered the Massachusetts Freedom Movement’s February 20, 1964 press conference in which Reverend James Breeden, Noel Day and Peggy Dammond Day provided specific instructions to parents regarding the upcoming February 26th Stay Out; challenged rumors about potential violence; outlined the Freedom School curriculum; discussed the parameters of possible actions by truant officers; and commented on a second legal opinion by Massachusetts Attorney General Edward Brooke. Brooke ruled that the parents of children who participated in the School Stay Out could be fined $20 and anyone who induced a child to stay out of school could be fined $50. Summary and select metadata for this record was submitted by Audrea Dunham.
Day, Noel
Day, Peggy Dammond
Ryan, Phyllis
Breeden, James
February 20, 1964
Collection (local):
WGBH Open Vault
Boston, Massachusetts
Civil Rights Era
Politics-Truancy Laws
Politics-National Association for the Advancement of Colored People/Boston School Committee Negotiations
Politics-Law Enforcement by State Attorney General
Freedom Schools
Race Relations-Northern Discrimination
Race Relations-Civil Disobedience
Race Relations-De facto Segregation
Stay Out for Freedom Day
Roxbury, Massachusetts
Educational Issues-Legality of School Boycott
DVD, 00:16:51;00
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