Lawsuit Seeks Better Bilingual Education in Texas

Latino Civil Rights Organizations File Legal Action to Improve Bilingual Education Programs in Texas

MOTION AVAILABLE IN WEB LINKS SECTION UNDER "BILINGUAL LAWSUIT"

San Antonio – MALDEF, the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund, and META, the Multicultural Training, Education and Advocacy, Inc., filed a motion on behalf of LULAC and the American GI Forum seeking to require Texas to monitor, enforce, and supervise the State’s bilingual education and ESL program for English Language Learner (ELL) students in Texas pubic schools. GI Forum State Commander Paul Herrera stated “Texas has failed to ensure equal educational opportunities for the over 600,000 English Language Learner students in our public schools. The State’s neglect of its duties has failed these students for 25 years and now it’s time for the State to stop the passing the buck and address its failures by implementing the program the way it was meant to be.”

The motion, which was filed in the United States Eastern District Court of Texas, seeks further relief from the Court under its continuing jurisdiction in the landmark case of US v. Texas. The motion comes 25 years after the State promised the Texas Court to implement effectively a bilingual education program for all ELL students.

Roger Rocha, Texas President of LULAC added, “The Texas Education Agency is abandoning its duty to oversee the program, resulting in thousands of English Language Learner children being pushed out of the very system meant to educate them. This is a recipe for disaster not only for our students, but for the future of Texas. Instead of wasting time looking at failed theories from other states, it’s time for the TEA to roll up its sleeves and make sure that our own program does the job.”

Founded in 1968, MALDEF, the nation’s premier Latino civil rights organization, promotes and protects the rights of Latinos through advocacy, community education and outreach, leadership development, higher education scholarships and when necessary, through the legal system.

META is a national legal advocacy organization that for over 30 years has devoted itself to improving the education of English language learners and immigrant students.

February 9, 2006, PRESS RELEASE

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