Webinar: Lau v. Nichols 50th Anniversary

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The Lau v. Nichols U.S. Supreme Court decision in 1974 defined the right of emergent bilingual students to equal access to a meaningful education. IDRA founder Dr. José Cárdenas testified in the case and then assisted the Office for Civil Rights in the development of the Lau Remedies, the first guide for schools about serving emergent bilingual students. Throughout 2024, IDRA will honor the ruling’s anniversary, its impact for students and what it means for today.

IDRA co-hosted a commemorative webinar via Claremont Graduate University School of Educational Studies. Celina Moreno, J.D., IDRA President & CEO, spoke alongside the Lau plaintiff lawyer, school superintendents, policy experts and academics. They discussed the policy and practice implications of the ruling through to today. 

Co-Sponsors: CABE • Californians Together • Center for Equity & Biliteracy in Education Research at San Diego State University • Center for Equity for English Learners at Loyola Marymount University • Children´s Equity Project at Arizona State University • IDRA • NABE


Introduction and Keynote

  • Moderator/Organizer: Oscar Jimenez-Castellanos, Senior Research Fellow, Claremont Graduate University
  • Welcome: DeLacy Ganley, Dean of the School of Educational Studies at Claremont Graduate University
  • Keynote: Monserrat Garibay, U.S. Assistant Deputy Secretary of Education and Director of the Office of English Language Acquisition (OELA)

Panel 1 Legislation and Policy: Advocating for Equitable Access to Multilingual Education (1hr) 

  • Martha Hernandez, Executive Director, Californians Together
  • Shantel Meek, Founding Director of the Children´s Equity Project and Professor of Practice, Arizona State University
  • Celina Moreno, President and CEO, IDRA
  • Patricia Morita-Mullaney, Associate Professor, Purdue University
  • Edward Steinman, Lau Plaintiff Lawyer and retired law Professor, Santa Clara University Law School
  • Discussant: Kenji Hakuta, Lee L. Jacks Professor Emeritus, Stanford University

Panel 2 Policy and Practice: Implementing High-Quality Multilingual Instruction (1 hr) 

  • Karling Aguilera-Fort, Associate Superintendent, San Francisco Unified School District
  • Cristina Alfaro, Associate Vice President for International Affairs and Executive Director for the Center for Equity in Biliteracy Education Research, San Diego State University
  • Magaly Lavadenz, Leavey Presidential Endowed Chair and Executive Director of the Center for Equity for English Learners, Loyola Marymount University
  • Pedro Martinez, CEO, Chicago Public Schools
  • Michael Robert, Superintendent, Osborne School District
  • Discussant: Eugene Garcia, Professor Emeritus, Arizona State University


When: January 22, 2024
Time: 6:00 pm - 8:30 pm CT