ACLU v. State of Wisconsin - Complaint Under the Rehabilitation Act and Americans With Disabilities Act
In a 2011 complaint, the ACLU and Disability Rights Wisconsin that the Milwaukee Parental Choice Program called on the U.S. Department of Justice to investigate the systematic discrimination against and exclusion of students with disabilities in Wisconsin’s school voucher program. The ACLU charges that Wisconsin's Public Schools’ voucher program fails to ensure that students with disabilities are given equal access to education.
Wisconsin has the oldest voucher program in the country and the Milwaukee program serves approximately 21,000 students. Currently, many families of students with disabilities are unaware of their rights to use vouchers for private schools, the schools receiving vouchers are not monitored for compliance with the ADA, and students with minor disabilities have been routinely suspended and expelled from the private schools. Together, this creates a discriminatory effect, systematically excluding students with disabilities from participating in the voucher program and segregating them in public schools in disproportionate numbers.