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

ESSA Comments

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Recipient: U.S. Department of Education View the PDF of these comments here. Re: Docket ID ED-2015-OESE-0130 Dear Ms. Spitz, On behalf of The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights and the 36 undersigned organizations, we would like to comment on the request for information regarding implementing programs under Title I of the Every Student … Read More

Categories: Advocacy Letter, Education

Keep the Promise of ESEA: Oppose the Every Child Achieves Act, S.1177

Thursday, July 16, 2015

Recipient: U.S. Senate View the PDF of this letter here. Dear Senator: On behalf of The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights and the 20 undersigned organizations, we write to ask you to oppose final passage of the Every Child Achieves Act, S.1177.  Originally passed on the heels of significant civil rights legislation, including … Read More

Categories: Advocacy Letter, Education

Latest News

Civil Rights Leaders Urge Governor Corbett to Immediately Address Philadelphia’s Budget Crisis

Friday, October 11, 2013

Civil and human rights leaders sent a letter this week urging Pennsylvania’s Governor Tom Corbett to take immediate action to address the ongoing budget crisis in the School District of Philadelphia (SDP). SDP faces a $300 million budget shortfall that forced officials to make drastic cuts, resulting in more than 137,000 students, 85 percent of … Read More

Categories: Education, News

Civil Rights Groups Recognize the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) by Drawing Attention to Racial Disparities in U.S. Education System

Monday, September 23, 2013

By Tamera Willis, a Fall 2013 Intern Though the U.S. Constitution was built on the ideals of equality and equal opportunity, the reality for low-income, minority American children navigating our education system is very different. To address these issues, and in light of the upcoming 109th session of the Human Rights Committee in Geneva in … Read More

Categories: Education, News

Civil and Human Rights Groups Oppose Kline ESEA Bill; Support Miller Alternative

Thursday, July 18, 2013

The U.S. House of Representatives will vote this week on the “Student Success Act,” which would reauthorize the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA). Civil and human rights groups believe the bill introduced by Rep. John Kline, R. Minn., constitutes a “rollback.” Thirty-five civil and human rights groups sent a letter to the House opposing … Read More

Categories: Education, News