Nathan Hale High School Displays Fair Housing Movement Exhibit

Nathan Hale High School Displays Fair Housing Movement Exhibit
Posted on 12/08/2018
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In an effort to help students better understand the Fair Housing Movement, an exhibit called Crossing the Line, which focuses on the 1967 Fair Housing marches in Milwaukee and the resulting Civil Rights Act of 1968, is being displayed in the library at Nathan Hale High School.

“The exhibit is a collaborative effort by the Wisconsin Historical Society, Wisconsin Black Historical Society, Milwaukee Historical Society, and University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee,” explains Social Studies teacher, Michael Ellery. “Nathan Hale has waited nearly two years to host the exhibition as it has travelled to over seventy Wisconsin middle and high schools, universities, public libraries, and public gathering places. The display helps link this important piece of local history with our students’ study of the civil rights movement in United States History and U.S. Government courses.”

According to Ellery, “Students study this as part of the curriculum in 9th grade Modern United States History and in Advanced Placement U.S. Government & Politics, AP United States History, and AP Human Geography classes. It is also an excellent opportunity for our students to develop an academic partnership with local professional and educational institutions. Additionally, some English teachers will also use the display to give students a context for their reading of
A Raisin in the Sun.”  

The traveling exhibit is part of a larger project that seeks to make Milwaukee’s place in the national struggle for racial equality more accessible, engaging, and interactive.
It addresses the racial inequalities that created school and housing segregation in Milwaukee, civil rights protestors – particularly teenaged students led by Father James Groppi – engaged in 200 nights of marches, boycotts, and political involvement.  

“It’s important for students to realize that still -- today -- a Fair Housing Board is needed in communities to ensure equal housing opportunities for all,” said Principal, Matt Lesar. “Our students are familiar with  programs like the Fair Housing Poster Contest in City of West Allis. This display provides deeper learning about an important issue.”

“Students need to understand the discrimination people faced and how the struggle continues,” adds Ellery.

The City of West Allis has a Fair Housing Board that promotes fair housing throughout the community to businesses, housing providers and real estate professionals. The Board also processes all claims of discrimination in housing and is responsible for receiving, investigating and eliminating or remedying discrimination by means of conciliation, persuasion, education or litigation.