Affirmative Action Ban Continues to Inflict Severe Damage on Black Higher Educational Opportunities in California

Despite the Supreme Court’s Grutter ruling in 2003, public universities in California are still mandated under state law not to consider race in their admissions decisions. This law, enacted by public referendum in 1996, continues to have a devastating effect on black higher education opportunities in California.

This spring the 10 campuses of the University of California accepted a total of 55,000 students. For the first time in history, Asian Americans were the largest group among students accepted for admission. Asian students, who are 11 percent of all high school graduates in California, were 36 percent of all students admitted to the University of California this spring.

Blacks made up only 3.4 percent of the students admitted to the University of California’s 10 campuses this year. At the state’s flagship campus at Berkeley, there were 298 black students admitted this year, an increase of 8 percent from a year ago. But blacks made up only 3 percent of all admitted students at Berkeley.

This is less than one half the level that prevailed prior to the enactment of the ban on race-sensitive admissions.