Trump Administration Officially Rescinds Obama-era School Discipline Policy

WILL has helped lead the charge to roll back the illegal, harmful Obama policy

Today, U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos officially rescinded a 2014 Obama-era “Dear Colleague” letter that was used to influence school suspension policies by threatening federal action if discipline policies resulted in a “disparate impact” on racial minorities.

WILL President and General Counsel Rick Esenberg applauded the move:

“The Obama-era “Dear Colleague” letter was bad law and policy. It was an illegal exercise of administrative power by the Obama Administration which sought to have greater control over local school districts’ discipline policies. But academic achievement in Wisconsin schools suffered as a result. The Trump Administration recognized that school leaders and local officials deserve the authority and trust to create and implement discipline policies without worrying about federal bureaucrats meddling in their classroom.

Legal protections still exist. Rescinding this unlawful “Dear Colleague” letter leaves in place the rigorous anti-discrimination provisions of Title IV and VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.”

Last summer, WILL spearheaded a letter from conservative leaders to Secretary DeVos, warning her that she must rescind Obama’s 2014 “Dear Colleague” letter. WILL has been at the forefront of this debate, including publishing the following:

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