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Students May Sue State for School District’s Discriminatory Practices

Posted Sep 9, 2019

A California appellate court has ruled that students and parents may sue the state over a school district’s disciplinary practices that target black and Latino students. The plaintiffs alleged that the state was aware of disparate expulsion, transfer, and suspension rates by Kern High School District, but failed to take action, violating the California Constitution’s equal protection clause. In Collins v. Thurmond, the Court of Appeal for the Fifth District reversed a Kern County Superior Court decision dismissing California’s Department of Education and Superintendent of Public Instruction from the lawsuit. The school district reached a settlement with plaintiffs in 2017, after agreeing to overhaul its disciplinary policies. See Courthouse News, Kern Sol News