The NAACP has filed a federal lawsuit against Education Secretary Betsy DeVos and her Department of Education for abandoning civil rights enforcement regulations, and dismissing hundreds of complaints.

The Education Department has started dismissing hundreds of civil rights complaints that…
Last week the organization joined with the National Federation of the Blind, and the Council of Parent Attorneys and Advocates, to file the suit against DeVos and the Department of Education’s Office of Civil Rights in the U.S. District Court of Maryland.
It was reported that Betsy DeVos and the Department of Education have determined that civil rights no longer matter, with their decision to abandon DOE’s Office of Civil Rights (OCR) responsibility to investigate racial, gender or disability discrimination complaints.
“By summarily changing policies to allow for the dismissal of civil rights complaints and the ability of organizations to appeal their rulings, DeVos is basically saying protecting civil rights and the rights of those with disabilities no longer matter at the Department of Education,” said NAACP General Counsel, Bradford M. Berry
According to an NAACP press release, the DOE has severely curtailed its Office of Civil Rights’ ability to enforce federal discrimination laws by implementing illegal changes to its case procedure manual, impacting the rights of those it “purports to serve.” It reads further:
In March 2018, DOE’s Office of Civil Rights revised its Case Processing Manual thereby altering the rights of complainants to have their discrimination allegations reviewed or appeal decisions made by OCR. These changes, made without the legally required notice and comment, prevented the NAACP and other organizations from voicing our opinions about how the proposed rule changes would affect students of color, students with disabilities and low income students, and thereby violates the federal Administrative Procedures Act.
DeVos, who has no experience as an educator, nor any experience in education, has been supportive of school choice, school voucher programs and charter schools. She has been embattled and embarrassing since her contentious confirmation hearings last year. The billionaire was chosen by Donald Trump after Jerry Fallwell Jr. turned down the cabinet post, and is sister to Blackwater founder Erik Prince, who reportedly brokered a secret meeting in Seychelles establishing a back channel between Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin.
Trump’s billionaire boys club cronyism, as well as his divisive rhetoric, have set the climate for such disastrous practices, charges the NAACP.
“It’s important for people to realize how the racism and rhetoric emanating from the White House is seeping its way into law and policy, and this arbitrary change is just one more example of where Trump is taking the nation,” says Russell.
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