Sarah Lucero

Youth Justice Education Clinic

Sarah Lucero, Youth Justice Education Clinic

Motivated by her own family experiences and vocation as a teacher, Sarah participated in all of YJEC’s offerings. As a 2E, Sarah joined the inaugural class of the Education Policy Practicum, where she engaged in education justice community lawyering on behalf of marginalized students with disabilities. She submitted a Public Records Act request to LAUSD for data regarding involuntary transfers to help inform her paper on the impacts of exclusionary discipline on BIPOC students. Sarah also gave public comment to LAUSD’s School Board demanding implementation of the Black Student Achievement Plan with fidelity.

Sarah served as a clinical law student for two years. We assigned Sarah our most vulnerable clients because we knew they would be in capable hands. One client is a bright young girl who struggles with a dual diagnosis of substance use and mental health disorders. Her unaddressed disabilities made it extremely difficult to access her education -- resulting in incarceration the court deemed “for her own safety.” Sarah relentlessly advocated for the client’s access to a residential treatment center as an alternative to detention. Another client has a history of commercial sexual exploitation and struggled to attend school given her significant disability-related needs. Sarah filed a due process complaint to obtain more behavioral supports and an evidence-based reading intervention program.

With Sarah’s extensive experience and fierce advocacy skills, we are so happy that she will be representing Native youth in education proceedings at Disability Rights California as a Skadden Fellow next year!