The landmark 1954 Supreme Court ruling that desegregated schools was about more than just race in education, President Joe Biden said Friday as he commemorated the 70th anniversary of the decision. It was about the promise of America, he said—that it is “big enough for everyone to succeed.”

“The work of building a democracy … worthy of our dreams starts with opening the doors of opportunity for everyone, without exception,” Biden told Black leaders at the National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington. “Education is linked to freedom.”