The Department of Education Office for Civil Rights (OCR) is finally taking a stand against the rampant discrimination that has been allowed to fester in Ashland School District, Oregon. According to recent reports, the OCR is investigating the school district for allegedly creating race-based student groups, which is a blatant violation of Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. It’s about time the government takes action against these groups that only serve to divide students based on skin color.
“We are glad to learn that the DofEd has opened an investigation into one of our allegations against Ashland School District,” Nicole Neily, president of PDE. “Student affinity groups like those are violations of Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.” https://t.co/tXeDOtqj10
— Mailyn Salabarria (@cbntaRMNP) March 22, 2023
Parents Defending Education (PDE), a group that champions parental rights, filed a civil rights complaint in January, revealing that Ashland School District was segregating students based on race. The Ashland School District allegedly created exclusive groups specifically for students of color, including the Black Student Union and the Latinx Student Union. The groups aimed to create “a safe space for students of Latin/Hispanic descent.” What happened to treating all children equally, regardless of their race or ethnicity?
According to PDE’s complaint, the school district had even posted a job position for an “Elementary Student Affinity Group Advisor,” whose role was to coordinate and lead race-based groups. This is an alarming practice that promotes division and hatred rather than unity and understanding. Parents and children alike are justifiably outraged that schools are promoting discrimination and indoctrination, rather than offering objective education.
The OCR is now investigating the allegations brought forth by PDE, but they have dismissed the complaint that the elementary school was creating affinity group programming. PDE, however, remains steadfast in their assertion that if the elementary school were to complete the hiring process for a student affinity group advisor and implement an affinity group model, that would also need to be investigated. Schools should be focusing on providing excellent education rather than perpetuating division and discrimination.
The Department of Education has documented a record-high number of discrimination complaints across the country’s schools from October 2021 to September 2022, with nearly 19,000 filed. Discrimination on the basis of race and sex were among the top complaints. It’s not too late to turn things around and focus on providing impactful education that teaches children to be united, regardless of any external factors. It’s time to focus on solid educational practices rather than contributing to racism and divisiveness in schools.