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Report: Candice Jackson appointed acting head of Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights

Several outlets are reporting that attorney Candice E. Jackson of Vancouver, Washington, has been appointed acting head of the Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights.

A statement from her alma mater, Pepperdine University School of Law, provides more detail, saying that she will be “Deputy Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights, and Acting Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights.” The Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights is the head of OCR and must be confirmed by the Senate, so Jackson will act in that capacity until she or someone else is permanently appointed.

Obviously, FIRE has its disagreements with the OCR when it comes to free speech and due process, with Exhibit A being our sponsorship of ongoing litigation against OCR over their preponderance of the evidence mandate in their April 4, 2011, “Dear Colleague” letter.

With the change in leadership, FIRE will once again reach out to OCR to express our concerns with its current policies, and will urge the office to bring its guidance and decisions within legal and constitutional boundaries while continuing its important work to combat discrimination in federally funded educational programs.

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