Was the Elementary and Secondary Education Act a civil rights act? No, not primarily. The record plainly shows it was an anti-poverty program, the benefits of which flow to all children regardless of race. The ESEA, unlike the Voting Rights Act, conveyed no new rights to anyone.
Why does this matter? Because the recently arrived Secretary of Education, John B. King, Jr., has used the argument “ESEA is a civil rights measure” against reasonable people who disagree with some proposed education regulations….(Read more at Flypaper)