On August 30, ARL joined the American Council on Education (ACE) and 47 other organizations in submitting an amicus brief (PDF) to the US Supreme Court in Schuette v. Coalition to Defend Affirmative Action. In the brief, the amici urge the Supreme Court to overturn Michigan’s ban on considering race in college and university admissions.
The amici argue that previous Supreme Court rulings have left it up to colleges and universities to decide whether or not to consider race in admissions. The brief states:
Whether and how, within the bounds of the Equal Protection Clause, to pursue the educational benefits of a diverse student body are questions of academic policy and practice properly assigned to the judgment of colleges and universities.
The brief notes that diversity has important educational value but that, because the constitutionality of pursuing diversity for educational purposes is not at issue in his case, this brief does not make new arguments on that issue.
The Supreme Court will hear the case on October 15. A decision is expected by the end of June 2014.
For more details, see “Back to the Supreme Court,” by Scott Jaschik in Inside Higher Ed, September 3, 2013.
The Association of Research Libraries (ARL) is a nonprofit organization of 125 research libraries in the US and Canada. Its mission is to influence the changing environment of scholarly communication and the public policies that affect research libraries and the diverse communities they serve. ARL pursues this mission by advancing the goals of its member research libraries, providing leadership in public and information policy to the scholarly and higher education communities, fostering the exchange of ideas and expertise, facilitating the emergence of new roles for research libraries, and shaping a future environment that leverages its interests with those of allied organizations. ARL is on the web at http://www.arl.org/.