Our new name, the Center for Learner Equity, reflects our core belief that when public schools design for inclusivity and equity from the start, all students benefit.
Donald Galloway (1938–2011) was a fierce advocate for the rights of people with disabilities and for the inclusion of people of color in the disability rights movement.
Johnnie Lacy was a Black disability rights activist integral to the independent living movement. Through her activism, she brought to light the intersectionality of race and disability and worked to tackle ableism in the Black community and racism in the largely white-dominated disability community.
While we understand the need for some very limited and nuanced flexibility in the wake of COVID-19, we urge the U.S. Department of Education to exercise great caution in authorizing any state waivers. States must continue to be required to capture key assessment and school climate data—as required by the law—so they can hold districts and schools to high standards and assure resources are targeted toward supporting all students, including students with disabilities.
On February 15, 2021, the Center submitted a letter to West Virginia State Senator and Chair of the Education Committee Patricia Rucker regarding our concerns about proposed legislation, HB2012, that would allow charter schools in the state to discriminate against students with disabilities.
Fannie Lou Hamer (1917–1977), a civil rights activist with multiple disabilities, was a pivotal figure in the fight for Black enfranchisement, women’s rights, and civil rights.
Brad Lomax (1950-1984), a Civil Rights leader and disability rights activist, brought together the two movements to present a united front in the fight for equity.
From the start, the disability rights movement has been inextricably interwoven with Black Americans’ fight for civil rights.
The Civil Rights Movement of the 1960s inspired many disability rights advocates, who used the model and tactics demonstrated by Black activists to pursue deinstitutionalization and legal rights.
Black disabled activists, as well as Black supporters without disabilities, provided instrumental support to the disability rights movement from the beginning—and strong alliances linked the two movements.
Lois Curtis is a Black disability activist and artist best known for her role as a plaintiff in the Olmstead vs L.C. Supreme Court Case establishing the right of people with disabilities to live independently.
The Center fully supports the Keep Our Promise to America’s Children and Teachers (PACT) Act, which sets forth a plan to fully fund Title I and the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA).