The Trump administration just scored a victory in its fight against affirmative action.
The Wall Street Journal reported on Tuesday that the Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center will no longer factor in an applicant's race when deciding on admittance to its medical school. Per The Washington Post, Texas Tech's decision is the result of pressure from the White House, which is seeking to "curtail" the use of affirmative action in education, and signals the approach that Education Secretary Betsy DeVos will likely take with other schools going forward.
Texas Tech reportedly agreed to the change in February, striking a deal with the U.S. Education Department after its Office for Civil Rights concluded a 14-year-old investigation into the university's use of affirmative action.
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In July, the Education Department revoked a set of guidelines implemented under the administration of former President Barack Obama that explained how "schools could legally weigh race as one factor to achieve diversity," despite the fact that the Supreme Court has ruled on multiple occasions that universities could use affirmative action to increase on-campus diversity. But the Education Department pointed to a loophole in the most recent ruling in 2016, which stipulated that the schools must continually review their affirmative action policies. The Education Department argued that Texas Tech was not doing so, and, therefore, might not have been properly considering other factors, such as socioeconomic status, that could contribute to increased diversity.
The Education Department did not ask Texas Tech to conduct such a review before requiring the elimination of race from the admission process, however, per the Journal.
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