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State, Federal Agencies Investigating DISD For Discrimination

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(credit: KTVT/KTXA) Steve Pickett
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DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – Federal and state agencies are investigating the Dallas Independent School District’s decision to use Title 1 funds to send 5,000 boys to see the film Red Tails in February.

The price tag for excursion –– which was touted as an exciting opportunity to merge education with entertainment –– topped $50,000.

Because the students qualified for federal funding, under Title 1 Disadvantaged Student category, the field trip was paid with federal dollars.

But at the same time, the school district may have been violating federal anti-discrimination rules, because the school district invited boys only for the movie event.

“The decision was made at the time that this would be a really good fit for boys”, Dallas ISD spokesman Jon Dahlander said Wednesday.

The explanation is in response to state and federal inquiries regarding the field trip.  The Texas Education Agency requested information about the use of Title I funds for the field trip.

“We are reviewing it,” TEA spokeswoman DeEtta Culbertson said.  Also Wednesday, a spokesman for the U.S. Department of Education said the office of Civil Rights is evaluating three complaints, to determine if the allegations warrant investigation.

U.S. Code Title IX rules also prohibit the exclusion of participation in any program based on sex that receives federal financial assistance.

DISD’s Dahlander said the district will answer all questions connected to the decision to send boys only on the movie field trip.

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