WASHINGTON, D.C. (Dec. 9, 2015) — OCA – Asian Pacific American Advocates is disappointed with the passage of the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), also known as the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA).
Today, the Senate voted 85 – 12 to pass the ESSA following the 359 – 64 passage in the House last week.
“Although the ESSA includes vital reforms for the broken system created by No Child Left Behind, we are disappointed that
Congress passed the final version of the ESSA without key civil rights protections for the Asian American and Pacific Islander community. Disaggregating data is vital to ensuring that all students are counted and recognized, so that they can have equitable access to the resources they need to achieve equal educational opportunities and assistance. Without data disaggregation in the ESSA, the educational disparities and our community’s needs can neither be adequately measured nor met,” said Ken Lee, OCA Chief Executive Officer. “Furthermore, we are concerned with the well-being of Asian American LGBT students, who may face mistreatment for their race, ethnicity, nationality, sexual orientation, or gender-identity. Lack of non-discrimination and anti-bullying measures in the ESSA is a reflection of how this legislation ignores these fundamental issues in the Asian American and Pacific Islander community.”
OCA – Asian Pacific American Advocates is a national organization of community advocates dedicated to improving the social, political, and economic well-being of Asian Pacific Americans (APAs).