Milton Math Study Group For Minority Students Violates Civil Rights Law, Parental Rights Group Alleges

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Is Milton Public Schools discriminating against students based on race?

A national parental rights group recently made this allegation, filing a federal civil rights complaint against the school.

Parents Defending Education filed a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education Office for Civil Rights, arguing that the town of Milton’s school system is violating Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment.

“We ask that the Department promptly investigate the allegations in this complaint, act swiftly to remedy unlawful policies and practices, and order appropriate relief,” Caroline Moore, vice president of Parents Defending Education, wrote in the complaint, dated Tuesday, February 14, 2023.

The group’s complaint centers on “The Calculus Project.” It is a study group that offers tutoring for low-income and non-white students, hoping to increase the number of minority students participating in Advanced Placement Calculus at Milton High School.

“The mission of The Calculus Project at the Milton Public Schools is to increase the representation and success of Black, Hispanic, Indigenous, People of Color, and low-income students in advanced mathematics,” the program’s description says on its web site.

The tutoring center for The Calculus Project is open for one hour per day after school at Milton High School on Monday and Tuesday, according to the web site.

The report from Parents Defending Education also features an exchange where a parent asks a school official why such a program excludes students based on race.

“It seems discriminatory if someone who is non African American/Black or LatinX wishes to attend the class but gets turned away due to race — this is wrong,” the parent wrote. “I read the Calculus Project and I understand the goal which is great, BUT I feel this may open MPS to a suit if a child in MPS wants to take this class and is turned away due to their race … This isn’t the Milton I know.”

The assistant superintendent for curriculum and human resources then told the parent that the goal of this program is to increase the number of black and Latino students taking high-level math classes at Milton High School.

“The mission of The Calculus Project at the Milton Public Schools is to increase the number of African American/Black and LatinX students who enroll and succeed in high-level mathematics courses at Milton High School, culminating with the study of calculus in their senior year,” the school official wrote. “There are many supports and programs for all students to achieve at high levels.”

Parents Defending Education redacted the names of the parent and school official on these email messages.

Milton Public Schools superintendent Garth McKinney could not be reached for comment on Friday, Saturday, Sunday, or Monday. Nor could a spokesman for Parents Defending Education.


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