SOURCE: Equip for Equality

Equip for Equality

August 18, 2015 10:56 ET

EFE Releases Findings From Statewide Audit of Charter School Enrollment Practices

CHICAGO, IL--(Marketwired - August 18, 2015) - In a state-wide audit of every charter school in Illinois, Equip for Equality (EFE) discovered that many charter schools include application questions that are improper and possibly discriminatory. Some schools applications include questions about:

  • Disability status, special education or other related services;
  • English Language-Learner services;
  • Social Security number;
  • Language or country of origin;
  • Grades, test scores, references, or criminal history; and
  • Income or public benefits status.

The questions have triggered conversations in which school staff members discourage families from enrolling. EFE also found that in some cases, charter schools failed to provide information to parents about the application process, created unnecessary barriers to enrollment, and omitted non-discrimination statements required by federal law.

EFE calls on charter schools to fix these problems in the next round of application materials for fall 2016.

The new EFE white paper reports on these practices and makes recommendations for a non-discriminatory and welcoming enrollment process. All information is available at www.equipforequality.org/charterapply/.

Equip for Equality, Inc. is an independent not-for-profit organization designated by the Governor to administer the federal protection and advocacy system for children and adults in Illinois with disabilities. EFE's mission is to advance the human and civil rights of people with disabilities and is accomplished through self-advocacy technical assistance and training, legal services, and public policy initiatives.

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