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Oral History Interview with Loistine Defreece, February 16, 1991. Interview M-0034. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007).
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  • Abstract
    Loistine Defreece discusses her position as principal of Lumberton High School in Robeson County, North Carolina. She responds to the interviewer's checklist of questions, sharing the details of her leadership style, emphasizing her commitment to curriculum development, and describing her efforts to forge relationships with students in order to make them better citizens. Defreece started teaching in integrated schools in the 1960s, so she does not believe that desegregation affected her career a great deal. Her boundary crossing came years later, when she became Lumberton's first black female principal. She seems to purposely avoid talking about race, preferring instead to focus on the challenges of educational leadership outside of a racial context. She does worry, however, about "losing" male black students, who cause a disproportionate number of discipline problems. She concludes the interview with a call to black men to act as role models. Defreece's thoughts on race and education may be useful to researchers interested in race in a post-desegregation environment.
  • School desegregation did not greatly affect Defreece's career
  • Need for positive black male role models
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  • Finding aid to the Southern Oral History Program Collection
  • Database of all Southern Oral History Program Collection interviews
  • Subjects
  • African American high school principals--North Carolina
  • The Southern Oral History Program transcripts presented here on Documenting the American South undergo an editorial process to remove transcription errors. Texts may differ from the original transcripts held by the Southern Historical Collection.

    Funding from the Institute for Museum and Library Services supported the electronic publication of this title.