Discrimination has become a point of focus at Maricopa Community Colleges
in Phoenix, Arizona, as the U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Civil Rights has launched into an investigation of some of the practices of the college system. The investigations are in response to concerns raised over two key issues: the request for immigration status
from some students and the failure to provide appropriate services to non-English speaking students.
Concerns Raised by Civil Rights Center
Concerns over both of these issues were initially raised by a non-profit organization based out of Phoenix, known as the Civil Rights Center. Information on this organization is limited, but according to a report in the New York Times
last year, the bare-boned group is run out of the Phoenix home of its director, Silverio Garcia Jr. Last year, Garcia filed a class-action complaint with the Department of Education, alleging that teachers in Phoenix schools were improperly transferred due to speaking accents that some children had difficulty understanding.
“This was one culture telling another culture that you are not speaking correctly,” Garcia told the New York Times.
The complaint, which was filed in May, 2010, was closed in late August, 2011, after the state agreed to alter its policy that stated only teachers who were fluent in the English could teach students learning English. State officials said at the time accents were not a part of their monitoring process to determine whether teachers should remain in the classroom.
This year, Silverio Garcia’s organization has gone after
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