Right To Basic Education

India

X and others v Albania, 2022

Challenging discrimination in schools

Naim Frasheri Primary school had an integrated population of ethnic Albanian, Romani and Egyptian pupils. Through a special program invitation, the school encouraged Romani and Egyptian children to the school with extending support and aid as school supplies and food as they were much poorer than the ethnic Albanians.

This provoked a ‘white fight’ and restlessness in the society between the Romani/Egyptian and Albanians as, very soon, the Romanians and the Egyptian kids outnumbered the Albanians.

The ERRC (European Roma rights centre) complained of unlawful racial segregation and that the Roma and Egyptian children at Naim Frasheri School were suffering from discrimination. The school discrimination was contrary to Protocol No.12 to the European Convention on Human Rights which Albania was also a part of it. Everyone in Albania is protected from discrimination based on race, ethnic origin, or colour by any public authority or in relation to any right protected by law. Not all European countries have agreed to be bound by Protocol no.12, but Albania has.

The European court issued a judgement largely agreeing with ERRC and It held that Albania had violated Article 1 of Protocol no.12 to the convention.

The Court affirmed that “discrimination means treating differently, without an objective and reasonable justification, persons in relevantly similar situations,” although in some circumstances different treatment is necessary to correct inequalities. Racial segregation, though, is not the kind of differential treatment that corrects inequalities – it instead violates a “fundamental value of democratic society” The Court cited that the school segregation violated the Convention’s prohibition against discrimination.

Guryan v. Mahon

2023 WL 2274617 (D. Me. May 16, 2023)

The United States District Court for the District of Maine ruled that the Maine Department of Education's (MDOE's) policy requiring all students to pass a standardized test in order to graduate from high school violated the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). The court found that the policy did not provide students with disabilities with an appropriate opportunity to demonstrate their mastery of the curriculum.

The IDEA is a federal law that guarantees a free and appropriate public education (FAPE) to all children with disabilities. The IDEA requires that schools provide students with disabilities with an individualized education program (IEP) that is designed to meet their unique needs.

In 2016, the MDOE adopted a policy that required all students to pass a standardized test in order to graduate from high school. The policy was challenged by several parents of students with disabilities, who argued that the policy violated the IDEA because it did not provide students with disabilities with an opportunity to demonstrate their mastery of the curriculum through alternative means.

The district court found that the MDOE's policy violated the IDEA because it did not provide students with disabilities with an appropriate opportunity to demonstrate their mastery of the curriculum. The court found that the policy was not tailored to the individual needs of students with disabilities, and that it did not provide students with disabilities with the opportunity to use alternative means to demonstrate their mastery of the curriculum.

The district court ordered the MDOE to develop a new graduation policy that does not violate the IDEA. The court also ordered the MDOE to provide compensatory education to all students with disabilities who were harmed by the policy. The district court's ruling is significant because it reinforces the principle that schools must provide students with disabilities with an opportunity to demonstrate their mastery of the curriculum through alternative means. The ruling also provides guidance to schools on how to develop graduation policies that comply with the IDEA.

The district court's ruling in Guryan v. Mahon is an important victory for students with disabilities. The ruling makes it clear that schools must provide students with disabilities with an opportunity to demonstrate their mastery of the curriculum through alternative means. The ruling also provides guidance to schools on how to develop graduation policies that comply with the IDEA. The ruling is also significant because it highlights the importance of individualized education programs (IEPs). IEPs are designed to meet the unique needs of students with disabilities. The district court's ruling makes it clear that IEPs must be tailored to the individual needs of each student.

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