Why we still fight for education justice
“The Ku Klux Klan never dies. They just stop wearing sheets because sheets cost too much.” — Justice Thurgood Marshall
“Parents have become so convinced that educators know what is best for their children that they forget that they themselves are really the experts.”
— Marian Wright Edelman
All children deserve a high-quality education free of discrimination. Education is the building block for a child to have a bright future. Schools must provide a safe space for children to achieve success. However, many schools do not afford their students this type of wholesome environment conducive to learning.
A recent survey showed that the wealthiest 10 percent of U.S. school districts spend nearly ten times more than the poorest 10 percent. The same survey found a spending ratio of 3 to 1 for minority versus white students is standard within the states. Additionally, recent data showed that in Texas, on average, and on every measure from curriculum offerings to the teacher’s overall qualifications, schools serving a more significant number of minority students had drastically fewer resources than those schools serving mostly white students.
These education inequalities, coupled with discriminatory practices, dramatically reduce the chances of minority students receiving an excellent education. They show the education system in the United States is still separate and unequal. Our senior partner detailed these and other education injustices in his superb book, Education Injustice.
There has been some progress over the years. However, education discrimination is still prevalent. Education discrimination can occur based on race, age, religion, gender, disability, or even English proficiency. Specific practices of education discrimination happen when schools practice the following actions:
- racial segregation in the classroom setting,
- unfair suspensions, expulsions, and corporal punishment,
- having unsafe and deficient facilities,
- disproportionate placement of minority students in special education, and
- denying minority students AP classes, scholarships, etc.
This list is not exhaustive of the many ways education discrimination and injustice occur.
Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964
Children have constitutional and civil rights that protect them from such discriminatory actions, which applies to all schooling levels. There are also state and federal laws that prohibit schools from using discriminatory practices against students. Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 is one such law.
Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 is the primary education law that protects children from education discrimination. The education activities and programs covered by Title VI receive federal government funding. Institutions that receive federal funding, such as state education agencies, universities, colleges, public museums and libraries, and vocational rehabilitation agencies must comply with Title VI.
Along with Title VI, other laws protect children from education discrimination, including Title IX of the Education Amendment, Title II of the Americans with Disability Act, Age Discrimination Act, and various other state-specific laws.
Call Our office
If your child is a member of a protected class and you suspect his school has discriminated against him, schedule an evaluation with the attorneys of Corbett & Corbett today to protect your child’s rights.