Civil Rights Group Files Complaint over Florida Scholarship Program
A Latino civil rights organization filed a federal complaint against the state's Bright Futures scholarship program last month, charging the program's use of college admissions tests discriminates against Latinos and Blacks.
The Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund filed the complaint with the U.S. Department of Education's Office for Civil Rights, asking that it require the state to give less weight to SAT and ACT scores.
If the federal department determines the state is violating the Civil Rights Act, it could withhold Title I education funding, which has amounted to more than $1 billion in the last three years.
The scholarships should be awarded by grade-point average, class rank or a combination of those two factors because they are a more accurate assessment of academic achievement, said Victor Viramontes, an attorney with the Latino civil rights group.
High school seniors must earn an SAT score of 1270 or an ACT score of 28 to qualify for a full scholarship to one of Florida's 10 state universities. …