During Hispanic Heritage Month, Civil Rights Coalition Calls For High School Education Reform

Hispanic students in New York lag behind in high school achievement, graduation rates.

For more information contact:
Laura Rodriguez, (202)331-4323, lrodriguez@vancomm.com
Lizette Jenness Olmos, LULAC, 202-365-4553

WASHINGTON, DC — A quality education is the right of every American. As we celebrate this month the many contributions of Latinos to the diverse culture of New York, we must also increase the capacity of our neighborhood schools to help nurture the Hispanic leaders of tomorrow.

More than 80 percent of New York’s Hispanic eighth graders read below grade level, and only 33 percent of Hispanic students graduate from high school in the state. Without high-quality high school education, students leave school unprepared for college, work, and life, effectively limiting their opportunities to achieve a bright future. For instance, dropouts from the New York high school class of 2007 will forego $23.4 billion in earnings over the course of their working lives.

Now is the time to strengthen our high schools so that more Hispanic students can be successful. A coalition of leading civil rights groups focused on high school reform known as the Campaign for High School Equity (CHSE) advocates for stronger education policies that support American high schools and hold schools accountable for graduating all students ready for college and work. These policies must include better services for English Language Learner students, culturally based teaching that respects native language and traditions, and accurate public reporting of disaggregated data.

Peter Fontanes, New York State Director of the League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC), is available immediately for interviews on this topic. LULAC is a CHSE member organization.

The Campaign for High School Equity (CHSE) is a coalition of leading civil rights organizations representing communities of color that is focused on high school education reform. CHSE members include the National Urban League, National Council of La Raza, National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, Leadership Conference on Civil Rights Education Fund,Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund, League of United Latin American Citizens, National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials Educational Fund, Alliance for Excellent Education, National Indian Education Association, and Southeast Asia Resource Action Center.

Receive recent news from the League
of Latin American Citizens.

Become an eMember!