Iowa School Administrators Get Schooled

By Jorge Rivas Apr 08, 2009

U.S. born high school student, Lori Phanachne, has a 3.9GPA, $86k worth of college scholarships and ranks seventh in her senior class in Iowa. Because of Iowa’s english-only laws, school administrators were trying to force Lori to take a standardized English Language exam because she spoke Laotian at home with her parents. Lori, of Laotian descent, was born in California and has never been in an English as a Second Language program but was being forced to take an exam because she didn’t speak english at home. She believes the exam is unfair and racist, so she refused to take the test. School officials told her she was "considered to be illiterate based on her refusal to satisfactorily complete the English Language Development Assessment" and was consequently suspended for refusing to take test. Mr. Ruleaux (assistant principal Beau Ruleaux) told me I was ‘no Rosa Parks’ — that I should give up because I would not succeed in my protest," Phanachone said. We’re happy to report that Lori can now tell her assistant principal that she won.

via angryasianman: "It looks like Lori Phanachone, the Laotian American high school honor student in Iowa who faced suspension for refusing to take the school district’s mandatory English language exam, will no longer be required to take the test: English-language learner classification lifted for Storm Lake honor student… The school district has made changes in the curriculum requirements, including a reclassification in the English Language Learners program. "

Let’s hope Assistant Principal Ruleaux apologizes and the district doesn’t let this happen again. Mr. Ruleaux better get her a nice gift for graduation.