Virginia Education Secretary Wants to Dramatically Reduce Asian Student Population

September 15, 2020

A battle is brewing between parents and education officials who want to dramatically overhaul the Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology’s admission process.

Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology is one of 18 magnet schools in the Virginia and is also 70% Asian, 19.5% White, 5% Other, 3% Hispanic/Latino, and 2% African-American.

The battle for admissions is getting so tense, Virginia Secretary of Education Atif Qarni (D), who organized the task force to evaluate diversity issues at TJ and 18 other magnet schools falsely accused one of the PTA members—fighting against the admissions reform policies—a member of an “anti-Muslim hate group” after she published a column criticizing Qarni, according to WTOP News.

Atif Qarni (Democrat). Image via Commonwealth of Virginia

Qarni even barred the school’s PTA from participating in an upcoming “listening session” on the admissions issue.

Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology is often ranked as the nation’s top high school in multiple surveys. The school draws the stop students from throughout northern Virginia and graduates are regularly admitted into Ivy League schools.

Qarni is extremely irate the school’s academic success has completely bypassed African-American and Hispanic students who make up barely 5% of the school’s student population, combined, according to WTOP News.

In an interview with The Associated Press, Qarni is developing a plan to completely eliminate the admissions test and consider socioeconomic status instead.

Standardized tests are often seen as a “white supremacist” tool to hold down African-American and Hispanic students. However, nearly every magnet school in the United States has a majority Asian student population with White students coming in second place. The “white supremacist” argument does not hold up.

Feature Image via Fast Company

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