Friday, October 28, 2016

Charter Schools Accused Of Discrimination In Admissions Process « CBS Sacramento

Charter Schools Accused Of Discrimination In Admissions Process « CBS Sacramento:

Charter Schools Accused Of Discrimination In Admissions Process

SACRAMENTO– More than two 200 California charter schools are accused of violating state and federal laws.
A recent report by The American Civil Liberties Union of Southern California says those charter schools are discriminating when admitting students. They say just like public schools, there needs to be equal access for all students enrolling.
About 20 of the flagged charter schools are in and around the Sacramento region. .
The study looked at 1000 of the state’s 1,200 charter schools and their online enrollment policies.
“With that information we realized this is a huge problem,” said Public Advocates attorney Rigel Massaro.
“We thought if these are the written policies, then this may only be the tip of the iceberg for families that come to a school and try to enroll their child,” she said.
The ACLU accuses charter schools of violations that include:
  • Discrimination against English learners
  • Requiring parents to volunteer
  • Pre-enrollment essay requirements
  • Requirements that discourage undocumented students
  • and exclusion based on Academic performance
“If you have a student that’s a lower performing student they’re going to feel like they can’t apply and they probably wouldn’t have success if they applied, and that’s discriminatory,” said Massaro.
About 20 schools from Sacramento to El Dorado and Placer counties have been named, including Sacramento’s Community Outreach Academy.
The school is accused of requiring all parents who enroll children to volunteer a minimum of 12 hours a year, but the school says it’s an old policy that has never been enforced and they’ve fixed the wording in their handbook.
“It’s a recommendation not a requirement and we want to reach out to the ACLU to be removed from the list,” said Jason Sample of Gateway Community Charters.
Sacramento’s Fortune School CEO, Margaret Fortune, says schools should have been alerted properly before a list was made public
“If there are policies that we need to take another look at, we’re more than happy to do, but we wont engage with the ACLU in a public shaming campaign :33
Other schools like Alta Vista Community Charter in Auburn said:
“We have recently been made aware of an alleged ACLU violation against our charter school. We have attempted to contact ACLU for clarification so that we may remedy this, and have not received a response. Until we know what we are in violation of, it is difficult for us to know how to resolve this. If we do receive clarification, rest assured we will address this matter quickly and effectively so that we may continue to represent our school and our community in the best way possible.”
Since this report has come out, about 90 schools have been taken off this list because they have corrected the violation.

The ACLU is working with each school that contacts them
Meanwhile the California Department of Eduation said: “The ACLU report raised some important issues that the California Department of Education has been investigating. Charter schools are a popular education option for many California families. As public schools, they need to be accessible to all students and follow state law.”Charter Schools Accused Of Discrimination In Admissions Process « CBS Sacramento:

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