MALDEF WILL PRESENT ORAL ARGUMENT BEFORE FIFTH CIRCUIT TO PROTECT HISTORIC TEXAS DESEGREGATION PROVISIONS
AUSTIN, TX – The Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund (MALDEF), the nation’s leading Latino legal organization, will argue on behalf of LULAC and the GI Forum to uphold student transfer provisions for Texas school districts in order to ensure that desegregation efforts are not impeded. Multicultural Education, Training and Advocacy, Inc. (META) serves as co-counsel in the United States v. Texas case, which will be argued before the Fifth Circuit by David Hinojosa, Staff Attorney for MALDEF’s Southwestern Region, on December 5, 2007.
Filed in 2004 by the Harrold and Samnorwood Independent School District’s (ISD), the ISD’s claimed that the State had unlawfully withheld their funds after they failed to enter student transfers into the state’s student transfer computer system. The Districts also argued that the transfer provisions of Order 5281 only applied to those school districts that were part of the original 1970 lawsuit and that ISD’s did not need to report Hispanic transfers.
Despite having prevailed in the district court, the districts argued that the transfer provisions should not remain intact and the State has essentially consented. MALDEF filed a brief with the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals and will argue: 1) that the matter is moot since the Districts prevailed in the trial court; and 2) that the transfer provisions remain relevant and are aimed at TEA’s past violations. If TEA desires to have those modified or dismissed, then it must properly bring a motion before the District Court, not the Court of Appeals.