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Citywide Coordinating Council records

Collection MS-1990-031: Citywide Coordinating Council records


  • Creation: 1966 - 1979
  • Creation: Majority of material found within 1975 - 1978

Scope and Contents

The Citywide Coordinating Council (CCC) records consist of the documents created and compiled by the CCC during their oversight of the desegregation process in Boston Public Schools, 1975-1978. These records document the activities of the CCC, its staff, and its many subcommittees and organizations, as well as school segregation more generally. Materials in this collection include clippings, correspondence, court documents, budget materials, hearing transcripts, minutes, monitoring forms, newsletters, questionnaires, reports on desegregation, statistical analyses, and a large number of publications from the CCC’s Resource Center. Some materials, particularly court documents and information on desegregation in other communities, date prior to the formation of the CCC.

The CCC’s central files document the formation and functions of the CCC, its subcommittees, and connections to other Boston public school organizations. This series is primarily composed of reference and administrative task files, which reflect the original file plan and work processes of the CCC’s staff. Subjects covered include bilingual education, Boston School Committee and Boston School Department activities, educational and pairing programs, desegregation issues, and monitoring. Boston Public Schools annual reports, correspondence, court documents, minutes, newspaper clippings, reports, and statistical analyses are all included in this series, which makes up the bulk of the collection.

The Resource Center provided information to the public about navigating the desegregation process in the Boston area and about desegregation generally. The Resource Center records consist mainly of publications and printed material, along with subject files and the center's administrative records. Included in these resources is information relating to the Code of Discipline, the system budget, district-specific information, and student assignments and transfers. The Resource Center also had a hotline, and these records include a small number of hotline call logs.

Senior staff records are the working files of executive staff directors Father Michael Groden and his successor James P. Breeden, as well as those of assistant staff director Frank Harris, S.J.. Other staff records are those of the office's assistants. This series documents desegregation activities undertaken by the CCC, as well as general office and operational matters.


Language of Materials

Predominantly English, with small amounts of Chinese, French, Greek, Italian, Spanish, and Portuguese.

Restrictions on access

Collection is open for research; portions are available digitally. A small number of materials are closed due to privacy restrictions.

One audio cassette has been digitally copied; the original media was retained, but may not be played due to format. Digital use copies can only be accessed in the Burns Library Reading Room.

Restrictions on use

Copyright interests have not been transferred to Boston College.

Historical note

Following the landmark 1954 Supreme Court case Brown v. Board of Education, which declared segregation in public schools unconstitutional, in 1965 Massachusetts became the first state to legally prohibit racially imbalanced schools. On March 15, 1972, the class action suit Morgan v. Hennigan was filed against the Boston School Committee (BSC) on behalf of fifteen parents and forty-three children, alleging that Boston schools were segregated. Judge W. Arthur Garrity Jr. ruled against the city and for the parents on June 21, 1974, ordering the BSC to come up with a plan for implementing desegregation. When they failed to come up with an appropriate plan by the deadline in January 1975, the courts took a more active role. Garrity appointed advisors (called masters and experts) to formulate the desegregation plan, which he approved in April. On May 10, 1975 Garrity issued a comprehensive desegregation order that included provisions for citizen participation, monitoring, and reporting. The order created the Citywide Coordinating Council (CCC) as an independent, autonomous oversight body to monitor the implementation of desegregation in Boston Public Schools.

In addition to monitoring implementation on behalf of the court, the CCC was charged with fostering public awareness of the desegregation process; publicizing the Council’s recommendations to the public; developing collaborations between colleges, universities, cultural institutions, businesses, and the public schools; identifying and resolving problems through mediation; and bringing unresolved problems to the attention of the plaintiffs, defendants, and court. It was specifically not allowed to “co-manage or make policy for the Boston schools,” or to take on any of the School Committee’s responsibility for carrying out the court’s orders.

Initially, the CCC was composed of forty-two court-appointed volunteers, including black, white, Asian, and Hispanic members, parents from all parts of the city, and people from educational, business, labor, civic, religious, and community organizations, in addition to two members of the Citywide Parents Advisory Council and two students from Racial-Ethnic Student Councils. This number proved unwieldy and was gradually reduced. Arthur Gartland served as the CCC’s first chairman, followed by Robert Wood. The CCC was also provided with staff funded by the city, including an executive director, an assistant director, and necessary personnel. Father Michael Groden was the CCC’s first executive director, beginning work in July 1975; James P. Breeden joined as deputy director in June 1976 and later became executive director. Frank Harris, S.J., was the assistant staff director.

As the monitoring agent of the court, the CCC held public hearings, trained and coordinated school monitors, inspected school facilities and transportation, arranged school/university pairings, and monitored the desegregation of faculty and staff as well as of students. The Council also investigated bilingual education, occupational/vocational education, and special needs education to see if all students’ needs were being met. They submitted frequent reports to the court, and commissioned numerous reports and statistical analyses to assess the progress of integration. In its campaign to spread public awareness of implementation, the CCC distributed press releases and established an information center that responded to public inquiries and held a reference library open to the public.

Beginning in May 1977, the court began to plan its withdrawal and ordered the creation of a permanent Department of Implementation to carry out the desegregation plan. The Department of Implementation took over the CCC’s responsibility for coordinating monitors in September 1977. In July 1978, CCC Chairman Robert Woods stepped down to become Superintendent of Boston Public Schools. The CCC was formally disbanded on September 1, 1978.


Citywide Coordinating Council. Annual report, 1975-1976.

Citywide Coordinating Council. “CCC Chronology, 1975-1978,” in the Final report to the U.S. District Court, 1978. Desegregation-era Records Collection, Boston City Archives, (accessed August 30, 2012).

“Memorandum of decision of remedial orders,” Morgan v. Kerrigan, C.A. 72-911-G (June 5, 1975), 86-95.


69.5 Linear Feet (68 containers)

1.6 Gigabytes (2 files with approximately 51 minutes of audio.)


Citywide Coordinating Council (CCC) records are the institutional files of the independent, autonomous body created by the courts to oversee desegregation in Boston Public Schools, 1975-1978. Records of the Council include meeting minutes, reports, court documents, correspondence, newspaper clippings, monitoring forms, statistics, and publications. The materials document both the activities of the Council and the process of desegregation of Boston's public schools.


This collection is arranged alphabetically in three series: I. Central files; II. Resource Center materials; and III. Senior staff records.

Series I. Central files is divided into fourteen subseries: A. Bilingual education; B. Boston Public Schools annual reports; C. Boston School Committee; D. Boston School Department; E. Correspondence; F. Court documents; G. Desegregation issues; H. Desegregation of faculty, staff, and administration; I. District Council Liaison Committee; J. Educational programs; K. Minutes and reports; L. Monitoring; M. Public relations and newspaper clippings; and N. Statistical reports.

Series II. Resource Center materials is arranged in three subseries: A. Reference subject files; B. Resource Center card file indexes; and C. Resource Center documents.

Series III. Senior staff records is divided into three subseries: A. Assistant staff director records; B. Executive staff director records; and C. Other staff records.


Gift of the Citywide Coordinating Council, 1978.

Existence of digital copies

Selected monitoring reports from the institutional files of the Citywide Coordinating Council, which was an court-created autonomous body that oversaw desegregation in Boston Public Schools (1975-1978), are available digitally. Links are included in the inventory.

Related Materials

Garrity, W. Arthur, Jr. Papers on the Boston Schools Desegregation Case, 1972-1997. University of Massachusetts, Boston.

James P. Breeden Papers, 1964-1984, ML-59. Rauner Special Collections Library, Dartmouth College.

John Joseph Moakley Archive and Institute, Suffolk University, Boston, MA.

Louise Bonar and Carol Wolfe Collection of Boston Education Materials, MS.1990.029, John J. Burns Library, Boston College.

School Department - Desegregation-era Records Collection, 1952 - 2004; bulk: 1975 - 2000, City of Boston, Office of the City Clerk, Archives and Records.


ABCD: Action for Boston Community Development

BASAS: Boston Association of School Administrators and Supervisors

BLAREC: Boston Latin Academy Racial-Ethnic Council

BPS: Boston Public Schools

BSC: Boston School Committee

BSD: Boston School District

BTU: Boston Teachers Union

Chapter 622: State law requiring equal educational opportunity regardless of race, ethnicity, religion, or sex.

Chapter 636: State grants “for projects whose primary purposes are to improve the quality of education and reduce minority isolation.” Used for staff training, support and instruction programs, school pairings, and independent proposals.

Chapter 766: Legislation for education people with disabilities. Resulted in state education funds to help schools create desegregation programs or improve education overall; used for independent programs or institutional pairings.

Circular #33: Also called the School Educational Plan. Superintendent’s Circular #33, issued on October 10, 1975, called for schools to develop community-based educational programs in three stages: 1975/1976 for planning programs, 1976/1977 for piloting and evaluating programs, and 1977/1978 for full implementation and final evaluation.

CCC: Citywide Coordinating Council

CDAC: Community District Advisory Council; 10 elected members, 10 appointed members. Dealt with district issues, supported RPCs, monitored schools.

CEC: Cultural Education Collaborative. Cultural institutions paired with public schools.

CET: Core Evaluation Team. Evaluated students with special needs.

CPAC: Citywide Parent Advisory Council; 2 elected representatives from each district, 1 white and 1 black, plus 2 Hispanic and 2 Asian representatives citywide, all parents. Responsible for parent council elections, Parents United newsletter, supported CDACs.

CWAC: Citywide Advisory Council. Parent organization that helped with ESAA proposal oversaw the spending of monies for them.

CWEC: Citywide Educational Coalition. Private non-profit advising parents.

DCLC: District Council Liaison Committee. Subcommittee of the CCC that coordinated monitoring.

DI: Department of Implementation – May 1977 on, formerly the Office of Implementation.

DUNA: Dorchester United Neighborhood Association

El Comite: El Comite De Padres Pro Defensa de la Educacion Bilingue = Parents Committee for the Defense of Bilingual Education

ESAA: Can refer to either the Emergency School Aid Act or the similar Emergency School Assistance Act. Federal funding for desegregating schools.

HSA: Home and School Association

METCO: Metropolitan Council for Educational Opportunity. Private nonprofit dedicated to increasing diversity and providing students with educational opportunity.

ORC: Occupational Resource Center

Phase I: The period from Garrity’s ruling in Morgan v. Hennigan on June 21, 1974 until the formation of the CCC on May 10, 1975. As a stopgap measure, schools were ordered to implement the State Board of Education’s Racial Imbalance plan until the BSC could come up with their own.

Phase II: Began May 10, 1975, with the comprehensive desegregation order issued by the Federal Court, which created the CCC, citizen participation groups, school-university pairings, a citywide magnet school district and several community school districts. The order also closed several schools and required busing and student assignments.

Phase IIB: Began May 1976. Continuity and stability emphasized.

Phase III: On May 6, 1977, orders were issued calling for conditions enabling the court to withdraw and for a permanent Department of Implementation to carry out desegregation and for a Unified Facilities Plan. Phase III officially began in Sept. 1977. Monitoring duties were transferred from the CCC to DI.

PLC: Parent Liaison Committee

REPC/RPC: Racial Ethnic Parent Council. Helped with monitoring, oversaw maintenance of physical facilities, helped with school’s annual reports.

ROAR: Restore Our Alienated Rights, an anti-busing organization led by Louise Day Hicks.

TC: Teacher-Coordinator; a teacher who assisted REPCs.

Title I: Federally funded enrichment programs, usually in reading and math, for low-income family schools.

Title IV: of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Called for the desegregation of schools

Title VII: of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Prohibited discrimination by employers.

Processing Information

Original order has been preserved wherever possible. Duplicates and printed material readily available elsewhere were deaccessioned. Deaccessions were also made for privacy reasons.

  • Financial records and checks.
  • Executive staff director records.
  • Assistant staff director records.
  • Public relations and news clippings
  • Monitoring records.
  • Minutes and reports.
  • Resumes and cover letters.
  • Education program records.
  • Bilingual education records.
  • Frank Harris's personal records.
  • Boston School District materials, including court orders and reports
  • Resource Center documents and listing.
  • Approved textbook catalogs.
Citywide Coordinating Council Records
1966-1979 (bulk 1975-1978)
Stephanie Bennett and Alexandra Bisio
December 2012
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the John J. Burns Library Repository

John J. Burns Library
Boston College
140 Commonwealth Avenue
Chestnut Hill MA 02467 United States