In this paper, I will discuss the main points and give my perspective on each case of Hobson v. Hanson, Diana v.
State Board of Education, and Larry P. Riles are three cases that are based on assessments that were used to place minority students inaccurately in special education programs. The importance of these cases is that they influence students that are supposed to be assessed and evaluated for special education in their primary language or parts of the tests that do not depend on knowledge of English which was a violation of equal protection laws. The case of Hobson v. Hansen (1967) was a class action lawsuit that was filed by a civil rights activist Julius Hobson and the Board of Education superintendent, Carl Hansen.
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The lawsuit was about low-income and Black students that were denied equal educational opportunities because of the district’s discriminatory practices. Included in the practice was a system that was assigned to various learning groups, minority schools were overcrowded and unequal, and optional attendance zones were used to prevent white students avoid attendance at such schools. The final court ruling for this case was against the defendant’s policies, citing that the board’s policies denied equal opportunities to students. It could not be proven that the intent of the Board of Education of the District of Columbia was damaging in its intent to “track” or group its students based on ability. The court required the Board of Education of the District of Columbia to end ability tracking, provide bus transportation for desegregation, integrate teacher assignments, and abolish optional attendance zones.
The legal rulings of Hobson v. Hansen case impact current educational assessment and evaluation procedures for a student with disabilities when the court declared the tracking system in which were placed into either general or special classes according to their scores on intelligence tests, unconstitutional because it discriminated against African American and poor children