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

CRDC Data Show Continued Need for Discipline Guidance

Tuesday, April 24, 2018

WASHINGTON – Vanita Gupta, president and CEO of The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, issued the following statement after the U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights (OCR) released the 2015-16 Civil Rights Data Collection (CRDC). “The Civil Rights Data Collection (CRDC) data released today are deeply troubling. The data show that students … Read More

Categories: Education, Press Releases

Civil Rights, Education Groups to Congress: Correct DeVos’ Approval of Unlawful ESSA Plans

Tuesday, April 10, 2018

WASHINGTON—The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights and 16 civil rights and education groups urged key members of Congress to fulfill their oversight responsibility of the Department of Education’s implementation of the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA). The groups ask the U.S. Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) and the U.S. … Read More

Categories: Education, Press Releases

Advocates Convey Support for Civil Rights and School Safety to Secretary DeVos

Wednesday, April 4, 2018

WASHINGTON – Today, The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, and AAUW attended the School Safety and Climate Summit hosted by Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos. During their roundtable discussion with Secretary DeVos, civil rights advocates expressed their frustration about the … Read More

Categories: Education, Press Releases

In Education Week, Former Civil Rights Directors Call for Schools Where All Students Can Learn and Thrive

Tuesday, March 27, 2018

WASHINGTON – In an Education Week commentary, the former heads of the civil rights offices at the Departments of Justice and Education call for school discipline guidelines that ensure safe, high-quality schools where students, teachers, and staff are treated with dignity and respect. The piece is co-authored by Vanita Gupta and Catherine E. Lhamon, the heads … Read More

Categories: Education, Press Releases

Nearly 150 Civil Rights and Education Groups to DeVos: Leave Discipline Guidance in Place

Thursday, March 22, 2018

WASHINGTON—Today, The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights and 145 local, state, and national civil and human rights and education groups sent a letter to Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos opposing any changes to or rescission of the 2014 school discipline guidance developed and released jointly by the U.S. Department of Education and Department … Read More

Categories: Education, Press Releases

Latest Advocacy Letters

Civil and Human Rights Coalition Letter re: ESSA Oversight

Tuesday, April 10, 2018

View this letter as a PDF here. The Honorable Lamar Alexander Chair U.S. Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions 428 Dirksen Senate Office Building Washington, DC 20510 The Honorable Patty Murray Ranking Member U.S. Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions 428 Dirksen Senate Office Building Washington, DC 20510 The Honorable Virginia … Read More

Categories: Advocacy Letter, Education

Support Positive Solutions to Keep Children Safe in Schools, Oppose Criminalization of Our Youth

Tuesday, March 13, 2018

View a PDF of this letter here. 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 rights of all persons in the United States, we urge you to oppose H.R. 4909, the Student, … 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