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This Note argues that many disciplinary alternative education programs ("AEPs") violate both parents' fundamental right to control their child's education and students' as yet unrecognized fundamental right to receive a minimally adequate education. These programs infringe parents' fundamental right to guide their child's upbringing by removing both the child and the child's school from standards-based assessments, which confounds parents' ability to compare their child's education with their own values and to take action on the basis of that comparison. In addition, this Note argues that the right to receive a minimally adequate education is a longstanding tradition in America that has become increasingly essential to our ordered liberty along with the expansion of suffrage over the last century. AEPs often violate this right because they are unaligned with state education standards and do not offer an opportunity to earn a diploma. As part of its conclusions, this Note identifies solutions that, unlike the current model of AEPs, are narrowly tailored to achieve the state's compelling interests in school discipline and in combating students' disengagement from school.


File nameDate UploadedVisibilityFile size
6 Sep 2022
2.16 MB



  • Subject
    • Education Law

  • Journal title
    • Boston College Law Review

  • Volume
    • 50

  • Issue
    • 1

  • Pagination
    • 197

  • Date submitted

    6 September 2022