At a time when stark achievement gaps remain unresolved, when increased funding in education is more badly needed than ever, and when too many schools are seeking to exempt English language learners from their accountability systems, H.R. 5 threatens to exacerbate the educational inequities that have long held back Latino students in our schools.
For the first time in 13 years, the DOE now makes clear that states, school districts, and schools must make education resources equally available to all students without regard to race, color, or national origin. This is some of the unfinished business of the civil rights movement and a giant step forward for poor children, often children of color.
While many graduates view the end of their studies as the formal transition point from one stage of life to another, the Latino community as a whole would be better served if graduation was looked upon as but one step along an individual's path of lifelong learning, professional development and achievement.