By Diana Ali, Policy Analyst, April 27, 2018
This post is the first in a series of judicial updates that provides an overview of current developments and corresponding implications for higher education and student affairs professionals. Today’s post, written by NASPA Policy Analyst Diana Ali, will focus on immigration and international students.
By Logan Casey and Elizabeth Mann Levesque, April 18, 2018
Since the start of the Trump administration, Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos has gradually rolled back anti-discriminatory protections to trans individuals by rescinding Obama-era guidance and announcing that the Office for Civil Rights (OCR) will no longer be accepting complaints from trans students regarding bathroom access. These actions seem to be taking place despite growing evidence that LGBTQIA students are increasingly subject to discriminatory practice. A recent survey produced by NPR, and Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, and the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, showed that 43% of LGBTQIA respondents in the K-12 age-group believe that they are not afforded the same chances and quality of education than non-LGBTQIA individuals. The results of the survey are consistent with other research in the area and suggest that the problem is not confined to K-12. The survey shows that 64 percent of trans individuals report being sometimes or often discriminated against in postsecondary education.
By Colleen Flaherty, April 24, 2018
Randa Jarrar, an associate professor of English at Fresno State University, gained immediate attention after tweeting that the late first lady Barbara Bush was a racist, sparking an investigation of her right to protected speech and academic freedom as a public university employee. In response, the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education and the American Civil Liberties Union promptly called on Fresno State to halt its investigation. Robert O’Neil, professor of law and president emeritus at the University of Virginia, agrees, citing that as a faculty member, Jarrar’s free expression is protected. Media outlets such as The Atlantic and the National Review pointed to a national phenomenon around “call-out culture” questioning the need for such an incident to blow up in the first place. David French of the National Review wrote, "leave the trolls alone. Let the radicals rant. Then, rebut the bad speech with better speech, or -- sometimes better yet -- rebut it with silence.”
By Maya Rhodan, April 25, 2018
While the decision has not yet reached the Supreme Court for a final ruling, this past week, the Federal District Court for the District of Columbia ruled that the legal reasoning provided by the Trump Administration to support their decision to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program was “virtually unexplained.” The Judge, John D. Bates, gave the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) 90 days to deliver a stronger case as to why DACA is unlawful. The ruling seems hopeful because there is room in it for DACA to be fully restored, though the future of the program remains uncertain due to the 90 day stay. The ruling could open up DACA eligibility to the 23,000 young individuals who turned 15 after the September 2017 announcement that the program would be ending. White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders was criticize the court decision, calling it “good news for smuggling organizations and criminal networks and horrible news for our national security.”
By Shalina Chatlani, April 27, 2018
This Education Dive brief showcases a report from UnidosUS to reveal new statistics regarding Latino students ages 18 to 24. The report shows that Latino individuals are pursuing a degree in higher education at increasing rates and meeting barriers to completion. Many of these students are first generation college students and face culture shock, unexpectedly heavy workloads, and financial constraints. In 2016, the graduation rate for Latinos in four-year programs was only 54% while their white counterparts graduated at a rate of 63%. Education Dive gathers insight from Madeline Pumariega, chancellor of the Florida College System, as how to close the graduation gap for Latino students.
Since the start of the 2018 State Legislative Session, the Policy and Advocacy Team at NASPA has seen movement on 19 bills across 10 states. This summary includes changes observed concerning tracked legislation over the past few weeks. TN SB 2480, which failed to move forward in the Senate Judiciary Committee on 04/03/2018, and TN HB 2620, which was taken off the Finance Ways and Means Subcommittee calendar on 04/09/0218, would expand the attorney general and reporter’s duties to include representation for a Local Education Agency (LEA) or certain LEA employees in a legal proceeding arising out of the LEA’s adoption of a policy or practice designating multi-person restrooms, locker rooms, or other facilities for use based only on one’s biological sex.
In-State Tuition for Undocumented Immigrants
Since the start of the 2018 State Legislative Session, NASPA’s Policy and Advocacy Team has seen movement on 25 bills across 14 states regarding in-state tuition for undocumented immigrants. NH SB 525, which the Majority Committee has referred for interim study on 04/24/2018, would prohibit the distribution of adult education financial assistance to any student who is not a legal resident. CT SB 4, which was enacted and signed by the Governor on 04/27/2018, will assist students without legal immigration status with the cost of college.
Guns on Campus:
Since the start of January, the Policy and Advocacy Team at NASPA has seen movement on 29 bills across 15 states. This summary includes changes observed concerning tracked legislation over the past week. KS HB 2042, which has passed the Senate and is under a motion to suspend Joint Rule 4(k) to allow consideration adopted as of 04/27/2018, would require the state to recognize all concealed carry permits issued by other states.
-A Notice by the Education Department on 04/30/2018
-This document has a comment period that ends on 05/09/2018
-Office of Postsecondary Education (OPE), Department of Education (ED)
Summary: “The Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2018 provided $10,000,000 to be used for the deferment of loans made to private Historically Black Colleges and Universities under part D of title III of the Higher Education Act of 1965, as amended. The proposed information collection will be used to determine each applicant's eligibility for deferment, obtain required documentation and assurances to support the deferment request, and prioritize among applicants if requests exceed appropriations.”
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