Scott Statement on Biden Administration’s Guidance on Race in Admissions

WASHINGTONRanking Member Robert C. “Bobby” Scott (VA-03) released the following statement after the Department of Education and Department of Justice released joint guidance on race in admissions.

“Admissions practices that narrowly tailored the use of race as one of many factors in evaluating prospective students were key to fostering diversity in higher education.  Such admissions policies not only supported historically underserved students, but research confirmed that diverse campuses also provided all students with a quality, well-rounded education. Regrettably, in June, the Supreme Court’s decision to end the consideration of race as a factor in college admissions was a significant setback in our effort to eliminate disparities in access to higher education and ensure diverse learning environments for all students.

“As the administration explained, today’s guidance can serve as a resource to help colleges and universities understand the Court’s decision as they commit to pursue diverse campuses. 

“In addition to today’s guidance, the Department of Education should also fully investigate how race unjustly permeates many other policies and practices in our educational system, as I requested earlier this month. This is important because race-conscious admissions policies were able to provide a counterbalance to factors—such as inequitable K-12 schools, racially biased admissions tests, and developmental and legacy admissions—that have discriminatory impact against students of color.

“I am grateful the Biden administration is committed to advancing diversity and opportunity in higher education, and I look forward to continuing to work with them as we deal with the aftermath of the Supreme Court’s decision.”

In May, Ranking Member Scott hosted a briefing with experts on the implications of the SCOTUS cases and the future of the consideration of race in college admissions. Furthermore, Ranking Member Scott introduced legislation, the Equity and Inclusion Enforcement Act (EIEA), which would restore the right of students and parents to hold schools accountable for discrimination in education.

In August, Ranking Member Scott sent a letter urging the Department of Education to take steps to protect the civil rights of students following the Supreme Court’s ruling in the cases of Students for Fair Admissions v. President & Fellows of Harvard College and Students for Fair Admissions v. UNC.

To read Mr. Scott’s GAO report on school segregation, which found more than a third of public school students attend a racially segregated school, click here.


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