Amicus Brief in Horne v. Flores: On Behalf of Mountain States Legal Foundation
24 Pages Posted: 1 Oct 2010
Date Written: February 26, 2009
In order to maintain the balance of power established in the federal system, the Framers intended that the federal courts’ authority would be limited.
Congress was mindful of this principle of federalism when it drafted the Equal Education Opportunity Act (“EEOA”), which gives effect to the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment in state-run schools. In order to protect the federal structure, Congress limited federal courts’ remedial discretion under the EEOA. The Supreme Court has also been mindful of the principles of federalism and has protected the authority of states to regulate their schools, while at the same time ensuring compliance with federal law.
The Ninth Circuit did violence to the principles of federalism that the Supreme Court has fought to protect and that Congress was mindful of when it drafted the EEOA. By affirming the district court’s order requiring Arizona to earmark funding for English Language Learner programs, regardless of the effectiveness of increased funding on meeting the requirements of the EEOA, the Ninth Circuit entangled the federal courts in a dispute that they had no expertise in resolving and disrupted the careful balance of power between the states and the federal government.
Keywords: Equal Education Opportunity Act, English Language Learner, Federalism, Supreme Court, Amicus, Ninth Circuit
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