This Black History Month As we celebrate Black History Month, it is important for special education students to learn about the inspiring accomplishments of Thurgood Marshall.
He was one of the most influential figures in American legal history and his legacy has shaped civil rights for decades.
Here are five reasons why he should be part of the curriculum for special education students:
1. Thurgood Marshall was a champion advocate for civil rights. As the chief litigator leading the legal team at the NAACP's Legal Defense Fund, Marshal successfully argued many landmark cases that overturned institutionalized segregation. His 1949 victory in winning Morgan v. Virginia made segregation on interstate buses illegal, paving the way for desegregation efforts all across America.
2. He showed how individual action can make a difference. Despite immense challenges, Thurgood managed to succeed through grit and determination. His story is an inspiring reminder that change starts with us as individuals — no matter who we are or where we come from, our actions can have a significant impact on society and help create lasting progress.
3. He went against expectations and shattered stereotypes in doing so. Not only did Marshall become one of the first black lawyers to argue cases before the Supreme Court, he was also appointed a justice in 1967 making him the first African-American judge ever to sit on America’s highest court.
4. He fought against discrimination based on gender as well as race. In 1975 Justice Marshall ruled unconstitutional an amendment excluding women from practicing at The Citadel, South Carolina’s military college. This decision helped advance gender equality and demonstrates that true justice knows no boundaries when it comes to race or gender orientation.
5.Thurgood emphasizes why education is essential for success—especially among underserved communities in need of more resources and equitable opportunities. His life story serves as an example of what individuals can accomplish when given access to quality education regardless of their background or circumstances.
Click here to learn more about our Black History Month Biography pack.
 Taylor AJ (1988).Thurgood Marshall: Warrior at The Bar - Rebel on The Bench New York NY: Dodd Mead & Co p44-45
 Ibid pp58-59
 "The Life & Legacy Of Thurgood Marshall" NPR 27 Oct 2015 https://www.npr.org/2015/10/21/450555399/the-life-legacy-of-thurgood-marshall
 Wilkins R & Guinier L (2008). Portraits Of A Nation: Major US Supreme Court Decisions Washington DC: CQ Press pp95-96
 Urofsky M (1992). Melvin Urofsky & Paul Finkelman (eds.) A March Of Liberty: A Constitutional History Of The United States Vol II New York NY: Oxford University Press 518  Rubin D et al (2009). From Jim Crow To Civil Rights Princeton NJ: Princeton University Press pp163-164 "The Life & Legacy Of Thurgood Marshall" NPR 27 Oct 2015 <https://www