Student Doe 1 v. Lower Merion Sch. Dist., No. 10-3824 (3d Cir. 2011)Annotate this Case
The District, which operates six elementary schools and two very highly-rated high schools set goals for redistricting, including: equalizing enrollment of the high schools and middle schools; operating elementary schools at or under capacity; not increasing the number of buses required; giving 2010 graduates the choice to either follow the redistricting plan or stay at the high school of their previous year; and basing decisions on current and expected future needs, not on past practices. The district court concluded that the plan required strict scrutiny because race was a factor in the formation of the plan, but concluded that the plan is constitutional because it does not use race impermissibly. The Third Circuit affirmed, holding that strict scrutiny did not apply, simply because decision-makers discussed race. The plan neither classifies on the basis of race nor has a discriminatory purpose. The plan met the rational basis test.