The Supreme Court's June 24 ruling in Fisher v. University of Texas at Austin preserves past precedent that universities may consider race and ethnic diversity as one of many factors for admission.
"That is good news," says AFT president Randi Weingarten. At the same time, she adds, the court sent the case back asking the lower court to use a different, stricter standard when considering these affirmative action measures, which is why many of us see this as a wait-and-see decision.
"The AFT has long championed diversity in our nation's universities. From Bakke to Grutter and now Fisher, we have filed amicus briefs in support of using race as one of many criteria for admission to college. We believe universities that have diverse student bodies—where people of different racial, ethnic and economic backgrounds can learn and share with one another—fosters educational opportunity, strengthens our democracy, and is critical to our collective economic future.
"The country has been strengthened throughout our history when we have expanded opportunity. This principle enshrined in law sets us apart from other countries around the world, and is the genius that has propelled America forward. This ruling continues this important legacy." [AFT press release]
June 24, 2013