|Scope and Content Note:||The URSCO records reflect NU's participation in Boston's efforts to integrate schools and document plans to develop curricula and courses suited to the newly integrated student population. This collection includes materials about NU's partners in URSCO and numerous issues of the Urban Schools Collaborative News. It provides samples of art and poetry produced by students in their schools as a result of the Collaborative's efforts. Also included are workshops materials, a course catalog from Madison Park High School, and a curriculum in communications, mathematics, social science, and science.
Northeastern University's (NU) role in the Urban Schools Collaborative began in August 1975 when U.S. District Court Judge W. Arthur Garrity, Jr. ordered the desegregation of Boston's schools. The Court mandate called for 21 universities to assist in providing equal educational opportunity for all Boston Public School children. Under NU President Asa S. Knowles, who chaired the first Steering Committee of the Phase II Desegregation effort, NU was paired with District 7 schools and the planned Madison Park High School.
NU's leadership role continued under Knowles successor, President Kenneth Ryder. In 1976, Ryder appointed Gregory C. Coffin as Director of NU's Office of Phase II Desegregation, which became the Urban Schools Collaborative Office (URSCO) in 1976.
Early programs with District 7 schools included a music curriculum, a special education diagnostic center, and the Community Resource Development program. During the second year, URSCO developed mathematics and bilingual curricula as well as a parent liaison program, and offered the use of recreational facilities. NU also helped to plan the Madison Park High School programs and facility, which opened in 1977. For Madison Park, NU created programs for parents, teacher training in mathematics, and career development.When Coffin retired in 1987, long–time Assistant Director Paula Clarke became URSCO's Director. Since July 1992, URSCO has been part of NU's College of Arts and Sciences.