The Pacific Legal Foundation (PLF) released a new video supporting its legal efforts to fight new admissions policies at Thomas Jefferson (TJ) High School for Science and Technology; the video argues that efforts to change the policy amount to a racist effort to reduce the number of Asian students at the school.
School officials instituted a merit lottery in 2020 to expand the student base to under-represented groups. In response, the Coalition protested the decision, and the PLF began representing the coalition in a drawn-out legal battle aimed at blocking the new policy. A district court agreed with the PLF and said the process was discriminatory, but the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit stayed the lower court’s order, allowing the school to use its new admissions policy for the 2022-2023 school year.
Governor Glenn Youngkin filled five vacancies on the Board of Education, according to a Thursday afternoon announcement. Youngkin’s appointees include Suparna Dutta, Co-founder of the Coalition for TJ which has been working to protest and block Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology’s controversial new admissions policy. The appointments give him a majority on the board.
“I’m delighted to appoint this group of proven leaders in their respective fields to help ensure every student has a best-in-class education,” Youngkin said in a press release. “I have tasked these innovators to bring their expertise as parents, industry leaders, educators, and policymakers to ensure our classrooms and our campuses prepare students
The U.S. Supreme Court has denied a petition that would have reversed an appellate court’s decision that is allowing Thomas Jefferson (TJ) High School for Science and Technology to continue using its controversial admissions policy for the incoming freshman class.
After the court’s Monday anouncement, Fairfax County Public Schools praised the decision in a statement.
“We continue to believe our new plan for TJ admissions is merit-based and race-blind,” Fairfax County School Board Chair Stella Pekarsky said. “We are confident that after considering the facts and the law, the appeals court will decide that our plan meets all the legal requirements and guarantees every qualified student will have the chance of being admitted to the finest public science and technology high school in the country.”
Attorney General Jason Miyares and 15 other state attorneys general have filed an amicus brief asking the U.S. Supreme Court to overturn a federal appeals court decision allowing Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology (TJ) to use its controversial admissions process while a lawsuit goes forward.
“Right now, there are innocent Virginians unfairly treated and punished not for anything they’ve done, but because of who they are. Thomas Jefferson High School’s new admissions process is state sanctioned bigotry – it’s wrong, and it’s the exact opposite of equality. As Attorney General, I’ll never stop fighting for the equal treatment and protection of all Virginians,” Miyares said in a press release.
The U.S. Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals issued a temporary stay in the lawsuit against Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology (TJ) on Thursday, with two of the three judges on the panel concurring. The decision allows the school to use its controversial admissions policy for the class of 2026 while the case proceeds.
“I have grave doubts about the district court’s conclusions regarding both disparate impact and discriminatory purpose, as well as its decision to grant summary judgment in favor of a plaintiff that would bear the burden of proof on those issues at trial,” Judge Toby Heytens wrote in the concurring opinion.