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 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

Civil and Human Rights Coalition Condemns Vote Against Education Accountability Rule

Thursday, March 9, 2017

WASHINGTON – Wade Henderson, president and CEO of The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, issued the following statement after the Senate joined the House of Representatives in using the Congressional Review Act (CRA) to repeal a U.S. Department of Education rule finalized last year that would clarify states’ obligations under the Every Student … Read More

Categories: Education, Press Releases

Latest Advocacy Letters

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

Letter to Secretary DeVos Re: ESSA State Plan Review

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Recipient: Secretary DeVos View the PDF of this letter here. Dear Secretary DeVos, On behalf of The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights and the 24 organizations listed below, we urge you to ensure that children receive the support and attention they deserve through the implementation of the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA). As … Read More

Categories: Advocacy Letter, Education

Latest News

Administration Issues Guidance to Ensure English Learner Students Treated Equally

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

The U.S. Departments of Education and Justice on Wednesday issued guidance to states, school districts, and schools to ensure that English Learner (EL) students “can participate meaningfully and equally in educational programs and services.” The equal participation of EL students, who comprise 9 percent of all public school students, is ensured under Title VI of … Read More

Categories: Education, News

The Leadership Conference Urges Education Department to Maintain Accountability in State Waiver Renewals

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

In a letter issued October 27, The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights urged Secretary Arne Duncan and the U.S. Department of Education to hold states to rigorous standards when renewing waivers under the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA). The letter calls for a continued federal commitment to equal educational opportunity, stating, “Our … Read More

Categories: Education, News

Students and Administration at Colgate University Come Together to Combat Discrimination

Thursday, October 16, 2014

After a five-day sit-in at Colgate University, students and administrators came together on September 29 to develop a 21-point plan on how to combat racism and increase diversity on campus. Lead by the Colgate University Association of Critical Collegians, at least 350 student demonstrators gathered on the predominantly White campus to increase awareness of the … Read More

Categories: Education, News