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: Students of Color Must Be Protected from For-Profit College Exploitation

Thursday, September 13, 2018

WASHINGTON—The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights and 22 civil rights and education groups submitted a Federal Register comment today opposing the department’s proposal to rescind the 2014 gainful employment regulations. These regulations were designed to ensure that educational programs facilitating student borrowing provide an education that enables students to repay their loans. They … Read More

Categories: Education, Press Releases

Back-to-School Video Campaign Urges DeVos to Reverse Course and Protect Students’ Rights

Monday, September 10, 2018

WASHINGTON—This back-to-school season, The Leadership Conference Education Fund launched a new video campaign, “Students Deserve Better.” The campaign aims to ignite viewers to call on Education Secretary Betsy DeVos and the Department of Education to reverse course and uphold civil rights for all students. “Secretary DeVos’ mean-spirited attacks on students’ civil rights are a direct … Read More

Categories: Education, Press Releases

Justice Department Files Amicus Brief Opposing Diversity

Thursday, August 30, 2018

WASHINGTON— Vanita Gupta, president and CEO of The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, issued the following statement on the U.S. Department of Justice’s decision to file an amicus brief opposing Harvard College’s motion for summary judgement in Students for Fair Admissions, Inc. v. Harvard: “The Sessions Justice Department’s intervention in this case opposes … Read More

Categories: Education, Press Releases

Department of Education to Student Borrowers: We Will Not Have Your Back

Thursday, July 26, 2018

WASHINGTON – Vanita Gupta, president and CEO of The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, issued the following statement on the Department of Education’s proposed new borrower defense rules: “With these borrower defense draft rules, the Department of Education is once again proposing to fail our nation’s students and fail to enforce our nation’s laws. … Read More

Categories: Education, Press Releases

DeVos and Sessions Rescind Key Guidance on School Diversity

Tuesday, July 3, 2018

WASHINGTON — Vanita Gupta, president and CEO of The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, issued a statement following reports that Attorney General Jeff Sessions and Education Secretary Betsy DeVos will rescind guidance from the Departments of Education and Justice that provides a roadmap to implement voluntary diversity and integration programs consistent with Supreme … Read More

Categories: Education, Press Releases

Latest Advocacy Letters

Civil Rights Community Letter to Ken Marcus Following His Confirmation

Wednesday, June 27, 2018

View a PDF of this letter here. June 27, 2018 The Honorable Ken Marcus Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights U.S. Department of Education 400 Maryland Ave., SW Washington, DC 20202 Dear Assistant Secretary Marcus, On behalf of The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights and the 23 undersigned organizations, we write to urge you … Read More

Categories: Advocacy Letter, Education

Secretary DeVos: Respect Plyler and Protect Immigrant Children

Tuesday, May 29, 2018

View a PDF of this letter here. June 4, 2018 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, Immigration

Comments on Enforcement of Significant Disproportionality Provisions in the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA)

Monday, May 14, 2018

View a PDF of this letter here. Johnny W. Collett Assistant Secretary Office of Special Education and Rehabilitation Services U.S. Department of Education 400 Maryland Ave., SW Room 5107, Potomac Center Plaza Washington, DC 20202-2500 RE: Docket ID ED-2017-OSERS-0128 Dear Assistant Secretary Collett, On behalf of The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights and … Read More

Categories: Advocacy Letter, Comments, Education

Latest News

New Reports Document Massive Resource Inequities in Public Schools

Monday, June 8, 2015

On June 8, The Leadership Conference Education Fund – along with Education Law Center (ELC) – released “Cheating our Future: How Decades of Disinvestment by States Continues to Jeopardize Equal Education Opportunity,” its new report detailing the enormous resource disparities in public schools nationwide. In addition, the Newark, N.J.-based ELC released its fourth national report … Read More

Categories: Education, News

Groups Call for Federal Loan Relief for Students of Corinthian Colleges

Monday, May 4, 2015

On May 1, Americans for Financial Reform and 33 other organizations, including The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, sent a letter to Secretary of Education Arne Duncan urging him and the Department of Education to ensure that all current and former students of the for-profit Corinthian Colleges receive federal loan discharges. The for-profit … Read More

Categories: Education, News

Groups Call for Strong ESEA Reauthorization

Monday, April 13, 2015

On April 13, The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights and 41 other national organizations sent a letter to Sens. Lamar Alexander, R. Tenn., and Patty Murray, D. Wash., chairman and ranking member of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee, outlining their thoughts and concerns about the bipartisan Every Child Achieves … Read More

Categories: Education, News