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Educational Equity and the U.S. Constitution

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Published: 9/12/2021 12:29:00 PM

On September 17, Michael Rebell of the Campaign for Educational Equity will host a Constitution Day forum to discuss how the U.S. Constitution has shaped the opportunity for educational equity in our nation’s schools.

Rebell will address the topic by discussing the latest U.S. Supreme Court decision in Parents Involved  v. Seattle, which this summer struck down two voluntary integration plans used by the Seattle and Jefferson County, Ky. school districts. The controversial 5-4 decision has turned Brown on its head by using the U.S. Constitution’s equal protection clause to limit school districts’ ability to craft policies to racially desegregate schools.

Rebell will review the decision and its implications for desegregation law, as well as the renewed emphasis that this all will place on the state court education adequacy cases in which the courts have overwhelmingly issued ruling that advance educational opportunities for low income and minority children. In addition, he will discuss how the Roberts court's dramatic turnaround in this case may affect the momentum for educational equity more generally in the United States. Will it have an effect on NCLB? On gender equity  or rights of the disabled? To answer these questions, we need to analyze closely the role of the courts in the larger constitutional separation of powers framework.

All students, staff and faculty are welcome to participate in this event which will be held on Monday, September 17th from 4:00 - 5:00 p.m. in Milbank Chapel.

Co-sponsored by the President’s Office for Diversity & Community and
Campaign for Educational Equity

Other Upcoming Equity Events:

2007 Third Annual Equity Symposium
Reassessing the Role of the Courts, the Law and School Policies after Seattle and CFE
November 12 & 13, 2007
Cowin Conference Center, Teachers College
Register online:
Cosponsored by Columbia Law School

Individuals with disabilities are invited to request reasonable accommodations including, but not limited to sign language interpretation, Braille or large print materials, and a campus map of accessible features. Address these requests to the Office of Access and Services for Individuals with Disabilities at (212) 678-3689,, or Deaf and Hard of Hearing Services at (212) 678-3853 V/TTY,

While every attempt will be made to fulfill all requests for reasonable accommodations regardless of when these requests are made, making requests by as early as possible will ensure that accommodations will be provided.