Photo: Palm Beach School District
The Justice Department (DOJ) announced that it has reached a comprehensive settlement agreement with the School District of Palm Beach County, Fla., the nation’s eleventh-largest school district, to prevent and address discrimination in school enrollment and student discipline.
The agreement resolves the department’s investigation into complaints that the district failed to enroll children based on their or their parents’ national origin or immigration status, and that its system of discipline discriminated against students based on national origin and limited English proficiency.
DOJ opened up an investigation in 2011 that the school district was discriminating against undocumented immigrant children. DOJ also received complaints that the school district was disciplining children with poor English-language skills differently than everyone else.
Under the agreement, the district will enroll all area students regardless of background and will provide translation and interpretation services throughout the registration process. The district will also limit the use of disciplinary measures that remove students from the classroom and implement behavior management and discipline practices that support and protect students.