South Kern Sol, Staff
On Monday, Kern County Superior Court Judge Eric Bradshaw ruled that a discrimination suit filed by Latino and African American students against the Kern High School District (KHSD) can move forward.
The ruling was announced by California Legal Rural Assistance (CRLA), which is part of a larger coalition of rights groups that initially filed the suit.
“The goal of this lawsuit is to correct the school district’s current discipline practices, to eliminate the disproportionate suspensions of students of color, to foster a safe environment with effective discipline responses, and to ensure the rights of students to a quality education,” read a press release put out by the group.
The expulsion rate for African-Americans in KHSD is 110.21 per 1,000 students. Latinos are expelled at a rate of 65.85 per 1,000. That compares to white students, who are expelled at an average of 18.70 per 1,000, according to Courthouse News Service.
The Kern High School district is the largest high school district in California and serves over 35,000 students, 62 percent of whom are Latino. African Americans account for 6.3 percent.
The plaintiffs in the case include CRLA, Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund (MALDEF), Equal Justice Society, and Greater Bakersfield Legal Assistance (GBLA), representing Latino and African American students and parents in Kern County.