Education

The nation cannot afford discriminatory barriers that unfairly limit or deny educational access based on factors like race, national origin, sex, or disability. Inequality in education prevents the nation from fulfilling its potential, and ensuring equal educational opportunity remains one of the civil rights movement's top priorities.

Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA)

Cover image for ESSA Guide for AdvocatesSigned into law on December 10, 2015, the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) serves as the latest reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) of 1965. ESEA was developed in response to the demands of communities during the civil rights movement that more be done by the federal government to address poverty and limited educational opportunity for people of color. ESEA was last reauthorized in 2002 and signed into law by President George W. Bush as the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB).

The Leadership Conference seeks to inform parents and community stakeholders about the requirements of this new law so that they are able to use these tools to demand the education all children deserve.

You can download the Every Student Succeeds Act Guide for Advocates here (PDF):

Latests Press Statements

Civil Rights and Education Groups to State Education Chiefs: Submit ESSA Plans That Provide All Children Equitable and High-Quality Education

Thursday, August 3, 2017

WASHINGTON—Earlier this week, The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, a coalition charged by its diverse membership of more than 200 national organizations to promote and protect the rights of all persons in the U.S., along with 22 civil rights and education groups, sent a letter to 34 state education chiefs, urging them to … Read More

Categories: Education, Press Releases

Civil and Human Rights Coalition Slams Reported Justice Department Move to Weaken Educational Opportunity

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

WASHINGTON— Vanita Gupta, president and CEO of The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, issued the following statement based on a report by The New York Times that the “Trump administration is preparing to redirect resources of the Justice Department’s civil rights division toward investigating and suing universities over affirmative action admissions policies deemed … Read More

Categories: Education, Equal Opportunity, Press Releases

Civil Rights and Education Groups Call on Department of Education to Support Protections Against Sex Discrimination

Thursday, July 13, 2017

WASHINGTON – Today, The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights and 36 civil rights and education organizations wrote to Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos in support of critical policy guidance clarifying schools’ responsibility to prevent and address sex discrimination under Title IX. The groups called on the Department of Education to work to protect … Read More

Categories: Education, Press Releases

Civil and Human Rights Coalition Condemns Administration’s New Instructions on Transgender Student Discrimination

Friday, June 16, 2017

WASHINGTON—In response to the Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights Instructions to the Field Regarding Complaints Involving Transgender Students, Vanita Gupta, president and CEO of The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, issued the following statement: “In February, in a mean-spirited move, Secretary DeVos and Attorney General Sessions rescinded important guidance clarifying schools’ … Read More

Categories: Education, LGBTQ Rights, Press Releases

25 Civil Rights and Education Groups to DeVos: Do Not Rubber Stamp ESSA State Plans

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

WASHINGTON – Today, 25 civil rights and education groups sent a letter to Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos calling for a thorough and robust review of state accountability plans submitted to the department, as required by the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA). The Department of Education plays a critical role in safeguarding educational equity for … Read More

Categories: Education, Press Releases

Latest Advocacy Letters

Civil Rights Community Letter Supporting Title IX Guidance

Thursday, July 13, 2017

View a PDF of this letter here July 13, 2017 The Honorable Betsy DeVos Secretary U.S. Department of Education 400 Maryland Avenue, SW Washington, D.C. 20202 Dear Secretary DeVos, On behalf of The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, a coalition charged by its diverse membership of more than 200 national organizations to promote … Read More

Categories: Advocacy Letter, Education

H.R. 2353, The Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century Act

Thursday, June 22, 2017

Download PDF version of letter Recipient: The U.S. House of Representatives Dear Representative, On behalf of The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, a coalition charged by its diverse membership of more than 200 national organizations to promote and protect the civil and human rights of all persons in the United States, and the … Read More

Categories: Advocacy Letter, Education

Support the Bonamici/Polis Amendment to Improve H.R. 2353, The Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century Act

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

U.S. House Education and Workforce Committee View a PDF of this letter with endnotes here May 16, 2017 Support the Bonamici/Polis Amendment to Improve H.R. 2353, The Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century Act Dear Representative, On behalf of The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, the National Women’s Law Center, … Read More

Categories: Advocacy Letter, Education

Latest News

Senate HELP Committee Advances DeVos Nomination

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Yesterday, January 31, the Senate Health, Labor, Education and Pensions (HELP) Committee voted 12-11 to advance the nomination of Betsy DeVos to be U.S. Secretary of Education to the full Senate for a vote. “The Republican majority on the Senate HELP Committee made a critical mistake today. Betsy DeVos is simply unqualified and unprepared to … Read More

Categories: Education, News

Vast Racial Disparities in America’s Public Schools Persist, Data Show

Tuesday, June 7, 2016

The Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights on Tuesday released results of its survey – the Civil Rights Data Collection (CRDC) – providing a comprehensive look at how more than 95,000 public schools in the United States are educating the nation’s children. The data, which is from the 2013-14 school year, paint a bleak … Read More

Categories: Education, News

This Vermont Teacher Wants an Education Bill that Strengthens Accountability

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

By Tara Yarlagadda, Field Associate Earlier this week, The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights shared a message from Terri Vest, who teaches 11th grade English, social studies, and online psychology courses at Twinfield Union School, a pre-K-12 school in Vermont. In her message, Terri highlighted her background as an educator and made an … Read More

Categories: Education, News