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The legal definition of discrimination means to distinguish, single out, or make a distinction. Unlawful discrimination refers to unfair or unequal treatment of an individual based on certain characteristics, including age, disability, ethnicity. When a student in the Wayne County School system is denied a request to be retained a year due to the loss of a whole year caused by COVID-19 while two other students were allowed to repeat a year, this is unfair treatment and meets the definition of discrimination.

The denied student has special needs and has been in a unique program where he has been making progress. Another student who is in the gifted program has been allowed to repeat the year and has no academic need but has an issue with athletics. One other student has been allowed to repeat the year with COVID being the factor. This is unfair and unequal treatment. Why would a gifted student be allowed to repeat the year while a student with special needs be forced to move along? Does athletics outweigh academics? Kentucky has decided that any student who wants to repeat the year can be allowed to do so due to COVID.

Federal law provides for fair treatment when a disability exists. This issue shows a violation of rights and unfair treatment.

Linda Tomblin


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