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Protecting the civil rights of English language learners today: A study of the recent DOJ and OCR investigations of selected school districts in the United States

Omobola Awosika Oyeleye, University of Nebraska - Lincoln

Abstract

The purpose of the study was to examine the circumstances and practices that led to OCR and DOJ investigations in seven selected school districts, and to determine the emerging themes from the details of the settlement agreements between the school districts and the United States. The themes developed through this study were aimed at providing a framework for school officials all across the nation, assisting them to examine their practices and align the practices with the results of the recent investigations and settlement agreements. ^ Representing the intermingling of the field of law and education, the study addressed the question: What are some school district practices that have been found to be in violation of U.S. government laws concerning the education of English Language Learners, and what are the details of the settlement agreements between the U.S. government and the education agencies? ^ The descriptive, non-experimental, and qualitative impact study examined the impact of the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) and the Office for Civil Rights (OCR) investigations on the educational practice relating to the education of English Language Learners (ELLs). ^ Data were collected from the settlement agreements between the seven school districts respectively and the DOJ and the OCR regarding the districts' provision of language services to their ELL students. Data analysis consisted of a search for patterns and emerging themes gleaned from the specific details of settlement agreements. ^ The results of the study indicated that school districts were in violation of the civil rights of their ELLs in the areas of registration, identification, placement, waivers, staff qualification and development, special education and ELL student education, district-parental communication, and ELL student monitoring. ^ To remedy the non-compliance, the Settlement Agreements placed upon the school districts an obligation to take specific corrective actions within a specified time period.^

Subject Area

Law|Education, English as a Second Language|Education, Administration

Recommended Citation

Oyeleye, Omobola Awosika, "Protecting the civil rights of English language learners today: A study of the recent DOJ and OCR investigations of selected school districts in the United States" (2013). ETD collection for University of Nebraska - Lincoln. AAI3604029.
http://digitalcommons.unl.edu/dissertations/AAI3604029

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