AG’s Office Announces Settlement Following Allegations of Systemic Racism in Loudoun Schools

Attorney General Mark R. Herring on Thursday announced his office secured commitmentsfrom Loudoun County Public Schools to reform policies, invest in minority community outreach, and submit to third party monitoring in an effort to improve equitable educational access for minority students.

Theagreementfollows an investigation by Herring’s Office of Civil Rights into allegations that Loudoun schools denied students an equal opportunity to participate in their Academies of Loudoun and elementary gifted and talented programs based on their race.Thecomplaint was filed by the Loudoun County Chapter of the NAACPin May 2019.

It was the first investigation ever conducted by the office into allegations of systemic racial discrimination in a Virginia public school division.

Under the agreement, Loudoun County Public Schools will be required to:

•provide the Office of Civil Rights with its analysis and proposed revisions to its outreach plan for the Academies of Loudoun and provide the Office of Civil Rights with additional information at its request;

• provide the Office of Civil Rights with its analysis and proposed revisions to its recruitment plan for the Academies of Loudoun and provide the Office of Civil Rights with additional information;

• provide the Office of Civil Rights with its analysis and proposed revisions to its admissions criteria for the Academies of Loudoun and provide the Office of Civil Rights with additional information;

• seek input on any proposed revisions regarding the Academies of Loudoun from the Minority Student Achievement Advisory Committee and Equity Committee through a process that will allow the public, including the NAACP Loudoun Branch, to provide input to those committees on any proposed changes or revisions;

• seek input on any proposed revisions regarding the Futura and SPECTRUM gifted programs from the Minority Student Achievement Advisory Committee and Equity Committee through a process that will allow the public, including the NAACP Loudoun Branch, to provide input to those committees on any proposed changes or revisions;

• consider any feedback on any proposed revisions regarding the Academies of Loudoun from the MSAAC, including the NAACP Loudoun Branch; and

•provide the Office of Civil Rights with its analysis and proposed revisions to its admissions criteria for the Futura and SPECTRUM gifted programs and provide OCR with additional information at its request.

The announcement noted the school division already has approved a model for addressing equity in student discipline, described in the Student Rights and Responsibilities Handbook, and is in the process of revising its nondiscrimination policies and practices, which it will submit to the Office of the Commonwealth’s Attorney for review prior to School Board approval, and has committed to annually review its protocol for responding to racial slurs and hate speech in schools.

The School Board alsohas adopted new admissions criteriaand student selection procedures for the Academies of Loudoun. Those changes areunder challenge in Federal District Courtin a lawsuit brought by parent who claim they are discriminatory.

“Discrimination has no place in Virginia, but especially not within our school systems. Our children deserve equal access to a quality education no matter what they look like or where they live,”Herring stated.“I hope other school systems throughout the Commonwealth will use this agreement as a lens through which to take a look at their own policies and procedures to make sure they are affording each child an equal opportunity. I want to thank my Office of Civil Rights for their hard work and dedication to this investigation and I would also like to thank the Loudoun NAACP for stepping forward when they perceived an issue.”

Following the complaint filed by the NAACP chapter, the Office of Civil Rights initiated a formal investigation that included interviews and review of documentation and information provided by the NAACP Loudoun Branch, the school division, and students, families, and school employees. Investigatorsconcluded that the school division’s policies and practices did, in fact, result in a disparate impact that harmed Black/African-American and Latinx/Hispanic students. The office then sent a Final Determination to both parties that included reforms and commitments needed to address the “discriminatory disparate impact identified and help ensure equal opportunity for each student.”

This agreement between Attorney General Herring’s Office of Civil Rights and Loudoun County Public Schools will be in effect through June 30, 2024.

The School Board met in closed session Jan. 28 to be briefed on the agreement. No formal action was taken at its conclusion.

Loudoun NAACP President Pastor Michelle Thomas hailed the action.

“It’s a Black History moment for sure,” she said, adding that the agreement sets the path for “making the changes we were dreaming out, that our ancestors dreamt about.”

She said the agreement moves the debate beyond vague goals and ensures there will be “more than just talk” about stamping out racism and discrimination. It also ensures that the NAACP will have a seat at the table as the future policies are enacted. “It’s an incredibly forward-looking document.”

Thomas also praised Herring for creating the Office of Civil Rights specifically to review the Loudoun NAACP complaint. Now, she noted, that office will remain in place to review cases of discrimination and racism in other school divisions or businesses around the commonwealth.

“It is not over. This is just the basis for when we start,” Thomas said. “Now the hard work begins.”

14 thoughts on “AG’s Office Announces Settlement Following Allegations of Systemic Racism in Loudoun Schools

  • 2021-02-18 at 1:37 pm
    Permalink

    Insanity begets more insanity. Herring has proved himself to be horrible as and Attorney General thankfully this stumblebum is not in line to become governor thanks to McAuliffe.

  • 2021-02-18 at 2:22 pm
    Permalink

    There is no place discrimination of any kind should be condoned especially not in the education of our children. If we can accept that unjust differentiation among people in awarding such an opportunity is the goal then what should the conditions for acceptance be for both the Loudoun Academies and Thomas Jefferson?
    1. Considering entry to these programs are at the Freshmen level there should be a high concern the person accepted can complete the program so there isn’t a wasted seat later in the program. I think (as an 8 year former school board member and a parent of a former AOS student) that a minimum but excellent and consistent grade level achievement in math and science plus evidence of parental support should be required.

    2. Considering that the AOS program comes in two phases there should be some allowance for the high achieving math and science student who does not want to eventually do project work to only attend the first two years which is a separate transcript numbered course.

    3. Considering the inquiry based nature of the AOS the candidate student should be outwardly curious and willing to question the teacher which should entail an interview not just test scores.

    4. Finally, whatever measured demographic used to limit one group compared to another it should be OPENLY disclosed to the entire population so every student can judge his or her ability to be chosen rather than some smoke filled backroom where political favors come into play. In my experience viewing the demographics of Loudoun there has been a DRAMATIC departure in accepting students based on demographic proportionality but upon careful analysis the public will see which groups have been accepted more than others and it is NOT as our highly partisan AG implies it is. Check for yourself. 🙂

  • 2021-02-18 at 3:02 pm
    Permalink

    How much will this cost tax payers? I have no kids left in LCPS so that all that concerns me.

  • 2021-02-18 at 3:47 pm
    Permalink

    The only racism that I have seen in Loudoun Schools is anti-White critical race theory (CRT) being jammed down our throats.

    Sad that alleged racism is being investigated by Virginia DEMs led by AG “brown-face” himself.

  • 2021-02-18 at 4:42 pm
    Permalink

    Let’s be clear since the article did not state it. Asian and Indian students will loose seats at the Academy’s so students who are not as qualified will gain seats. If the AOS is not for the best and brightest than get rid of it. Making them have quotas based race, sex, gender or anything other than test scores, grades and IQ is ludicrous.

    Instead of trying to help students achieve their best they would rather bring down some of our best and brightest to make way for students who aren’t.

    You can’t lift people up by tearing down others.

    • 2021-02-20 at 7:15 pm
      Permalink

      LifetimeLoudouner: I agree. I would absolutely support a blind application process not only for The Academies of Loudoun, but also colleges. No names, races, geographical information- just grades, courses taken, course load, and extra curricular activities. Professional sports does not seem to have a problem taking the best players available, even if one race dominates a particular sport, so why should academics be any different? Let the kids who have worked the hardest reap the rewards.

  • 2021-02-18 at 6:39 pm
    Permalink

    Malcolm X was a Muslim minister and human rights activist. Born in 1925, he met his death at the hands of an assassin in 1965. Malcolm X was a courageous advocate for black civil rights.

    Malcom X famously stated the following: “The worst enemy that the Negro have is this white man that runs around here drooling at the mouth professing to love Negros and calling himself a liberal, and it is following these white liberals that has perpetuated problems that Negros have. If the Negro wasn’t taken, tricked or deceived by the white liberal, then Negros would get together and solve our own problems. I only cite these things to show you that in America, the history of the white liberal has been nothing but a series of trickery designed to make Negros think that the white liberal was going to solve our problems. Our problems will never be solved by the white man.”

  • 2021-02-18 at 7:15 pm
    Permalink

    It’s going to another chance for LCPS to excel. The administration and record keeping is going to be phenomenal. All at the expense of education for students so there is “equitable educational access for minority students.” So the end result of this thanks to the perpetually institutionalized offended victims also known as NAACP will be grade inflation and dumb down of requirements for advancement. Who in their right mind would want to hire anyone that graduates from a LCPS school in the future.

    • 2021-02-19 at 1:51 pm
      Permalink

      There are certainly bright students in LCPS, RJones, but you are correct in noting that piece of paper known as an LCPS diploma is worthless. One must seek other sources to ascertain the quality of the student even if they graduated from ACL. These radical Leftists have devalued what they could not achieve. And wasted $Ms in the process.

  • 2021-02-19 at 10:34 am
    Permalink

    A perceived racial injustice is remedied by an actual racial injustice.

    I guess that passes for logic in the minds of the Lunatic Left.

  • 2021-02-19 at 1:14 pm
    Permalink

    Going 55 years back to the past… Very progressive.

  • 2021-02-19 at 2:32 pm
    Permalink

    The Clown Show continues. We all wonder when or if Loudoun County will get off the Crazy Train.

    The current Attorney General, Herring, supports using skin color as a determining factor when it comes to admissions?

    THAT IS RACIST.

    Equitable educational access is color blind, Mr Attorney General.

    Stop pandering.

    How about you submit to third party monitoring when it comes to elected officials??? A lot of us think this would be well worth it.

  • 2021-02-21 at 6:52 am
    Permalink

    I am not sure why there are schools for Loudouners that are based on differentiating and distinguishing certain children from others. The German school system is an excellent example of a “two-system” approach. It ultimately pigeonholes children with no ability to cross over to the “better” track. Why should one child, that can test better for a variety of reasons, be placed in a “preferential” and more “elite” school while others are DENIED the opportunity?

  • 2021-02-23 at 5:15 am
    Permalink

    Remember the fuss when Herring and Northam admitted to wearing blackface. Once the backroom deals with the naacp were final both the Governor and Attorney General had been compromised. It shows whenever the color of your skin is a factor. That is racism!

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: