ACLU

The Education Blog
9:06 am
Wed April 2, 2014

House Bill Takes Aim at Suspensions

Rhode Island’s House Committee on Health, Education and Welfare has scheduled testimony Wednesday on a bill seeking to reduce the use of “out of school” suspensions in public schools.

The bill would also require education officials to collect and analyze discipline data to determine how policies are affecting minority students.

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Health Care
11:33 am
Tue January 28, 2014

Should Flu & HPV Shots Be Required For School Kids?

The state’s health department is considering updates to its immunization policy for school kids from preschool through college. The proposals would require flu shots for kids up to age five and the HPV vaccine for kids entering ninth grade.

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RI Elections
11:21 am
Wed January 15, 2014

New Voter ID Law Gets Its First Outing In Woonsocket

Woonsocket City Hall
Credit RIPR FILE

Woonsocket voters go to the polls next week to elect a state representative to replace Lisa Baldelli-Hunt, who was recently elected mayor of that city.  The election represents the first time that photo identification will be required of voters.

The American Civil Liberties Union is reminding Woonsocket voters to be sure to take along a photo id when they head to the polls Tuesday. Woonsocket is holding a special election to fill the House seat vacated by newly-elected Woonsocket Mayor Lisa-Baldelli Hunt.

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RI News
3:04 pm
Mon September 16, 2013

RI ACLU Takes Legal Action Against Ed. Board for a 3rd Time

ACLU Exec. Dir. Steve Brown, left, wants a public debate on the NECAP graduation requirement.
Credit Flo Jonic / RIPR

The Rhode Island chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union is keeping up the heat in its opposition to the NECAP test as a requirement for high school graduation. The ACLU has filed a third legal action against what it calls a lack of process in retaining the controversial test.

For the third time in less than two months, the ACLU of Rhode Island has taken legal action against the state Board of Education for violating open government laws in dealing with the NECAP test.

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Politics
8:23 am
Fri August 9, 2013

Good Government Groups Press Raimondo For Investment Transparency

Four groups are calling for more transparency of the hedge fund investments in the state's pensions.
Credit RIPR FILE

Four groups are calling on state Treasurer Gina Raimondo to release more information about hedge fund investments in Rhode Island’s pension plan.

The groups say they’re troubled by how Raimondo’s office, in a recent response to the Providence Journal, heavily redacted some details about the hedge fund investments. The four organizations are Common Cause of Rhode Island, the RI Press Association, and the state chapters of the ACLU and the League of Women Voters.

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Education
12:22 pm
Fri August 2, 2013

RI ACLU Sues Board of Education to Open Up a Closed Retreat

Board of Education Chairwoman Eva-Marie Mancuso said closed retreats were common on the now defunct higher education board.
Credit file / RIPR

The Rhode Island chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union has filed a lawsuit to keep the state’s Board of Education from holding a retreat that’s closed to the public.

The upcoming retreat will feature presentations on high stakes testing. It will be closed to both the media and the public. Rhode Island ACLU chapter executive director Steve Brown said that undermines the state’s open meetings laws.

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The Education Blog
12:24 pm
Thu July 25, 2013

ACLU Leaves Testing Controversy for Another Day

The lawsuit filed against the Rhode Island Board of Education by the American Civil Liberties Union does not address the merits of a new test-based graduation requirement, focusing instead on a procedural issue. The ACLU’s local director, Steve Brown, said he is still hoping the board will reconsider the testing policy and move to reverse it.

The complaint alleges the board failed to properly respond to a petition from the ACLU and several other groups seeking to stop the policy, which requires students to show partial proficiency on tests of Math and English to earn a diploma.

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Education
3:00 pm
Wed July 24, 2013

ACLU Sues RI Board of Education to Take Up Testing Requirement

Providence senior Priscilla Rivera discussed the stress of not knowing whether she will be able to graduate.
Credit Elisabeth Harrison / RIPR

The American Civil Liberties Union claims Rhode Island’s Board of Education broke the law when it failed to consider a petition over high-stakes testing as a requirement for a high school diploma. The lawsuit has a narrow focus and is unlikely to settle controversy over the graduation policy.

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The Education Blog
8:24 am
Wed July 24, 2013

ACLU to Sue over High-Stakes Testing

The Rhode Island Chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union plans to announce details of a lawsuit Wednesday over the state’s high school graduation policy. The suit stems from a new requirement that students show partial proficiency on standardized state testing to qualify for a diploma.

The ACLU and other groups have asked state officials to reconsider the policy, arguing that it overwhelmingly impacts minority and low income students.  Statewide, roughly 4,000 students failed to meet the testing bar during their junior year.

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Education
4:01 pm
Wed June 5, 2013

RI ACLU: Higher Suspension Rate for Black & Hispanic Students

The Rhode Island ACLU announcing a study that found minority students were more likely to be suspended than white students.
Credit Flo Jonic / RIPR

One day after releasing a report showing that African Americans in the state are disproportionately arrested for marijuana possession, the Rhode Island chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union is out with a report showing a racial disparity in school suspensions. 

The civil rights group stopped short of calling it racial profiling, but says the issue is something education leaders need to study and correct.

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