The Parents Defending Education organization in Norfolk County, Massachusetts, is accusing Wellesley Public Schools of discrimination by creating certain affinity groups for communities of color.
It is further alleged that Wellesley held segregated events for students where some were invited but white students were excluded.
“It is appalling that an American public school has consciously implemented a policy to segregate students based on race and ethnicity,” Nicole Neily, President and Founder of Parents Defending Education said.
“Excluding children from activities based on immutable characteristics is not only immoral, but unconstitutional – and must be ended immediately – both in Wellesley and everywhere else this practice exists”
Parents Defending Education announced the lawsuit on social media earlier this week.
“Parents Defending Education filed a lawsuit against Wellesley Public Schools alleging that the district has systemically and repeatedly violated students’ First and Fourteenth Amendment rights, Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, and the Massachusetts Students’ Freedom of Expression Law through the use of segregated ‘affinity groups’ and an onerous speech code featuring a ‘bias reporting’ program,” they posted.
The Boston Globe reported that Parents Defending Education first took their complaints public two months after Wellesley Public Schools emailed minority students inviting them to participate in a forum following the racist Atlanta spa shootings that killed mostly Asian Americans.
“Parent A and B’s children have repeatedly told them that they want to go to school in an environment that does not categorize them — and their classmates — based on race,” the lawsuit states. “Parents A and B want their children to have the opportunity to attend, to participate in, and to learn from all school-sponsored events, regardless of race.”
The lawsuit alleges that the district is in violation of the Civil Rights Act and Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment.
In one instance, the lawsuit states the district allegedly told students that the phrase “Blue Lives Matter” a common phrase supporting law enforcement, is associated with white supremacy, in violation of the First Amendment.
“Under the guise of ‘racial equity,’ WPS has adopted a policy of segregating students by race,” the lawsuit states. “Specifically, WPS sponsors and organized racial ‘affinity group’ meetings that are open to some students but closed to others, based solely on the races and ethnicities of the students involved.”
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