A federal appeals court ruled last week that a former adjunct may not sue Ivy Tech Community College for alleged discrimination based on her sexual orientation.

Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which bars employment discrimination based on race, gender, national origin, religion and other factors, cannot be used to challenge discrimination based on sexual orientation because Congress did not intend to ban such bias, found a unanimous three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit.

 

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Three months after Yale University said it would keep John C. Calhoun’s name on one of its residential colleges, the university announced Monday that it is creating a new committee that could lead to the name being removed.

The announcement is an unexpected reversal of Yale’s position in April, when officials said keeping the Calhoun name was important. Yale President Peter Salovey at the time issued a statement saying, “Ours is a nation that often refuses to face its own history of slavery and racism. Yale is part of that history. We cannot erase American history, but we can confront it, teach it and learn from it. The decision to retain Calhoun College’s name reflects the importance of this vital educational imperative.”

 

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The House of Representatives passed a slate of bipartisan higher education bills late Monday aimed at tackling some of the easier policy aspects of the Higher Education Act– the behemoth federal law that’s overdue for an update but likely won’t get a complete overhaul this year.

The piecemeal approach isn’t a new tactic for Rep. John Kline, a Minnesota Republican and chairman of the chamber’s Committee on Education and the Workforce, who used thesame strategy in 2014 in hopes of getting a jump-start on the more complicated federal law.

 

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WASHINGTON — When it comes to picking a new president, young people in America are united in saying education is what matters most. But there’s a wide split in what else will drive their votes.

For African-American adults between the ages of 18 and 30, racism is nearly as important aseducation. For young Hispanics, it’s immigration. And for whites and Asian-Americans in the millennial generation, it’s economic growth.

The results from the new GenForward poll highlight big differences among young Americans who often are viewed as a monolithic group of voters — due in no small part to their overwhelming support for President Barack Obama during his two campaigns for president.

 

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A pre-med student is suing the University of Cincinnati over a practice of prohibiting male and female students from working in the same group in a physics lab. The lawsuit alleges that the university is violating Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 and the Equal Protection Clause in the 14th Amendment by engaging in gender-based discrimination.

Casey Helmicki, a rising junior, says a teaching assistant instructed her to work in groups with solely female students on the first day of a physics lab. The teaching assistant told her, “Women shouldn’t be working with men in science,” according to the lawsuit.

 

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In a year when presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump has spouted anti-immigrant rhetoric and black men have died at the hands of the police, college freshmen are reading works that reflect the current turmoil. Many colleges and universities are asking incoming students to read books that treat themes of immigration and racial injustice.

Colleges have increasingly come to rely on reading assignments as a way of providing a common intellectual experience for the incoming freshman class. Students typically read the same book over the summer and discuss the work during their first week on campus.

 

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Campus activism is typically less active in the summer, but recent shooting deaths in Louisiana, Minnesota and Texas have led to campus protests, college vigils and statements from academic organizations.

Some student events have focused on the killings of black men by police officers — incidents that led to the creation of the Black Lives Matter movement, which has been embraced by many students. Other events focused on or included the shooting deaths of police officers in Dallas.

 

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Conventional wisdom holds that American society is and has long been pervasively anti-intellectual, with only elite academics embracing the life of the mind. Kelly Susan Bradbury challenges that view, arguing that there have long been institutions outside of elite intellectual circles that have in fact nurtured intellectual life. She outlines this view in her new book, Reimagining Popular Notions of American Intellectualism: Literacy, Education and Class (Southern Illinois University Press). Bradbury, who teaches writing and rhetoric at the University of Colorado at Boulder, responded via email to questions about her book.

 

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A few months ago, one or more anonymous students wrote a note to their law professor, complaining that she had been spotted at least once on campus wearing a Black Lives Matter T-shirt. The letter said wearing the shirt was “inappropriate” and “highly offensive.” Further, it said “we do not spend three years of our lives and tens of thousands of dollars to be subjected to indoctrination or personal opinions of our professors,” and urged the professor to avoid “mindless actions” that might distract students at a law school where not everyone is passing the bar.

 

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Finding new ways to teach the digital generation, bringing down the cost of a college education and ensuring that more students graduate are among the biggest challenges facing institutions of higher learning today — and meeting those challenges has never been more crucial than it is now.

That was the clear consensus among some of the nation’s top educational leaders who gathered at a two-day conference sponsored by The New York Times on Monday and Tuesday.

The Higher Ed Leaders Forum was among a series of conferences organized by The Times throughout the year. It convened some of the nation’s top educators to discuss the future of higher education.

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