Rights groups sever school ties

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Three prominent civil rights organizations have abruptly ended their partnership with the Boston public schools to create a new system to assign students to schools, concerned that the process is moving too slowly and has left out the public.

The organizations have been assisting Boston schools since last fall, when the district received a federal grant to engage the public in developing a new assignment plan that would ensure students had equitable access to high-quality programs and classrooms that reflected the city’s demographics. Yet, during that time, the district has not devoted a single public meeting to the issue.

School officials were informed of the decision in a letter sent by e-mail Monday by the three organizations — the Charles Hamilton Houston Institute for Race & Justice at Harvard Law School, the American Civil Liberties Union of Massachusetts, and the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law of the Boston Bar Association.

“We have reached this decision based on what many perceive as BPS’ lack of meaningful engagement with the community during this process,’’ the organizations wrote in the letter, which they provided to the Globe yesterday.

Full story: Rights groups sever school ties – The Boston Globe