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Fri Jan 4, 2019, 11:45 AM

U.S. to Investigate Discrimination Against Native American Students on Montana Reservation

Source: ProPublica and New York Times

U.S. to Investigate Discrimination Against Native American Students on Montana Reservation

The Education Department said it will look into a long-standing complaint of racial inequities in Wolf Point schools after The New York Times and ProPublica wrote a story about the issue.

by Annie Waldman, ProPublica, and Erica L. Green, The New York Times Jan. 4, 5 a.m. EST

This article is a collaboration between ProPublica and The New York Times.

A year and a half after receiving a detailed complaint from tribal leaders, the U.S. Department of Education plans to investigate their allegations that the Wolf Point School District in Montana discriminates against Native American students.

In a Dec. 28 letter, sent hours after The New York Times and ProPublica published an investigation into racial inequities in the school district, the departmentís Office for Civil Rights notified the lawyer representing the tribal executive board of the Fort Peck Indian Reservation that it would look into the complaint. The board includes members of the Assiniboine and Sioux tribes.

According to the letter, the investigation will focus on whether Wolf Point schools discipline Native students more harshly than white students, shunt them into remedial programs without appropriate cause, and deny them special education evaluations and services. Native American and mixed-race students make up more than three-quarters of Wolf Pointís enrollment.

The department said it will also examine whether the district failed to respond to a parentís allegations that a Native student was racially harassed. The student wasnít identified in the tribal complaint or in the letter.


Read more: https://www.propublica.org/article/education-department-investigating-discrimination-against-native-american-students-wolf-point-montana-reservation

New York Times link: https://www.nytimes.com/2019/01/04/us/politics/native-american-education.html

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