After the Supreme Court’s decision in Brown v. Board of Education, 347 U.S. 483 (1954), that held that racial segregation was impermissible in public school systems, federal district courts were faced with imposing remedial measures on offending school districts. Bradley (plaintiff) brought suit against Milliken (defendant), the Governor of Michigan, alleging the existence of unconstitutional segregation in the Detroit, Michigan public school system. The district court ruled for Bradley and required the Detroit school system to use busing to facilitate desegregation. However, the school district’s remedy required busing not only in the City of Detroit, but also in the surrounding fifty-three school districts in the Detroit metropolitan area. The court of appeals affirmed the metropolitan plan, and the United States Supreme Court granted certiorari.