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Interview with Andy Baxter

Baxter, Andy
Williams, Jill
Date of Interview: 
Baxter, Andy; West Charlotte High School; Duke University; Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools; Teachers; Public schools; Integration in education; Student councils; Social classes--Economic aspects; Middle class--Social conditions; Segregation in education; Racism; Ethnic diversity; Open plan schools; North Carolina--Charlotte--Piedmont Courts; North Carolina--Charlotte; North Carolina--Charlotte--Myers Park; Interviews (Sound recordings); Oral histories
Andy Baxter talks about his experiences as a student at West Charlotte High School, where he was Student Council President in his senior year. In particular Baxter reflects on his experience with racial integration at the school, speaking at length about the different levels of integration in various areas of school life, including academics, staffing, extracurricular activities, social functions, and the lunchroom. Baxter notes that the level of integration varied significantly across these activities, with a higher level in clubs and certain social situations, and a distinctly low level in academic classes, where there were few black students. Despite this obvious inequity, Baxter does credit West Charlotte for the effort made towards integration and towards building a respectful culture within the school. In reflection Baxter suggests that the apparent successes of West Charlotte during the 1980s may have been due to the social class of the student body, which was mostly middle or upper middle class irrespective of race.
North Carolina--Charlotte; circa 1980 - 1989
Interview Setting: 
Mr. Baxter’s office at Davidson United Methodist Church (Davidson, N.C.)
Levine Museum of the New South, West Charlotte Series
Collection Description: 
For this series, interviewer Jill Williams interviewed former students, teachers, administrators and parents associated with West Charlotte High School during the early years of racial integration in Charlotte Mecklenburg Schools.
Interview Audio: