Asian students win bias settlement

Beaten and bullied at South Philadelphia HIgh, Asian immigrant students were credited for forcing the district to agree to provide translators and parental notification in future cases of harassment and violence, reports the Philadelphia Inquirer. In addition, the district agreed not to portray victims of attacks as perpetrators or gang members.

Hao Luu, an immigrant from Vietnam, was beaten badly by 10 to 15 students who followed him after school. When his grandmother complained, the school blamed Luu for the attack, falsely accused him of being a gang member and banned from the school.

At one point, officials accused Luu of taking part in a fight in Philadelphia in 2008, when he was living in Virginia. A notice of his suspension hearing went to his family in English, a language they struggle to understand.

Luu, now 18, has not returned to South Philadelphia High, which houses a program for students learning English. Nineteen percent of students are English Learners, most of them from Asia.

Asian students complained of being targeted by black classmates. Federal investigators found the district had deprived Asian students of equal protection by remaining “deliberately indifferent” to “severe and pervasive” harassment and violence.

Via Learning the Language.

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