A Litigation Trend Analysis of Case Law Outcomes Pertaining to the Educational Rights of English Learners: A Civil Rights Issue




Racines, Delia Elizabeth

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The landmark 2001 No Child Left Behind (NCLB) Act has been a step forward in federal policy for the ever-increasing population of English Learners (ELs), fostering inclusion in standards-based assessments and college and/or career-readiness efforts, yet, ELs continue to struggle academically. The current 5.4 million ELs make up the lowest performing academic group in the United States (US) today. Despite its good intentions, NCLB is leaving behind the very students it was designed to help. The emphasis on various programs/services adopted by public schools based on the plethora of evidence-based instructional strategies has uncovered a less emphasized, yet, critical gap in research: attention to, enforcement, and/or a comprehensive and systematic analysis of the educational rights of ELs. Across the US, districts are learning of their lack of knowledge needed to meet legal requirements. The incentive to increase EL-related knowledge, beyond instructional strategies, is paramount.



Education, English as a Second Language (ESL), Law, Case law, Civil rights, Educational rights, ELL, ESL, Legal rights