The U.S. Department of Education has agreed to examine whether New York City’s small high schools discriminate against special education students and English-language learners.
In a letter dated June 7, the department’s office for civil rights wrote that it had reviewed documents about the allegations and found them to be “appropriate for complaint resolution activities.”
The letter came in response to a March 8 complaint filed with the department by the district’s Citywide Council on High Schools.
The elected group contends that the New York City Department of Education improperly excludes from the city’s new, small high schools students with disabilities who require self-contained classrooms, and English-learners who require bilingual education. (“Small Schools Under Big Fire,” March 22, 2006.)
City education officials have said that small high schools often do not have the resources necessary to serve special education students and English-learners adequately when they first open, but would be equipped to do so within three years.
A version of this article appeared in the July 12, 2006 edition of Education Week