Parent Group: Illinois School Has Racially Discriminatory Policies

A residential specialty high school in Illinois is the target of a new civil rights complaint filed by a parental rights group that alleges it has racially discriminatory policies.

On Wednesday, Parents Defending Education filed the complaint against the Illinois Math and Science Academy located in Aurora, Ill., “for discrimination on the basis of race in programs or activities that receive federal financial assistance.”

In its complaint, the group alleges this is in violation of the 14th Amendment as well as the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

In question is the school’s Brotherhood Sister Circle, a program that provides students who are “culturally, linguistically and economically diverse” with a place where they can “learn about the history and current system of oppression in America.”

The program, started in 2019 by the school, was designed to give Latinx and Black students an opportunity to “celebrate and enhance their strengths, creativity, intelligence, promote networking, community involvement, financial literacy, resources and academic success.”

The PDE says it obtained emails that indicate an annual retreat held by the BHSC discriminates against individuals who aren’t Hispanic or Black.

Some of the details of the series of emails indicated that many events at the retreat were completely off-limits to students who weren’t Latinx or Black. Some sessions, such as the keynote presentation, were open to the public, but all others were labeled as “closed sessions” to just those students, according to the emails.

IMSA has been in the news a lot lately. In December, students there orchestrated a walkout to demand that students who have “bias incident reports” receive harsher punishments.

Among a list of demands, the group wanted the school to notify “potential future colleges” to which offenders might apply to be notified of the reports levied against them.

The PDE asked the Department of Education in its complaint to investigate the school over the discriminatory policies it is carrying out and to “act swiftly to remedy unlawful policies and practices, and order appropriate relief.”

“[This evidence indicates a] deep-seated hate towards a specific demographic and [it] cannot be tolerated,” Caroline Moore, the vice president of PDE, told media outlet The Federalist.

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