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In this chapter, we argue that the growth of punitive school discipline in US schools has created an inequitable system of school punishment that is reflective of the…
In this chapter, we argue that the growth of punitive school discipline in US schools has created an inequitable system of school punishment that is reflective of the development of the school-to-prison pipeline and the establishment of an educational “total institution.” Current school discipline practices negatively affect student academic growth in the classroom as a result of an increase in suspensions and expulsions. Data in this chapter exemplify the overreliance on punitive school discipline in one urban school to address behavioral issues and also further expand on the concept of school-to-prison pipeline using the “total institution” theory of command and control of a population proposed by Goffman (1961). We argue that there are more effective measures of school discipline and seek to provide alternate possibilities for school leaders to address the draconian treatment of Black and brown boys in today’s traditional public school environments.
The proliferation of zero-tolerance behavioral policies and the presence of school resource officers (SROs) are receiving justifiable scrutiny for the deleterious effects…
The proliferation of zero-tolerance behavioral policies and the presence of school resource officers (SROs) are receiving justifiable scrutiny for the deleterious effects they have on students’ functioning. While many have argued the convergence of these policies thwart the development of Black and Latino boys, critiques examining the experiences of Black girls are scant. Disaggregated disciplinary data from across the country reveal “… black girls are suspended at higher rates (12%) than girls of any other race or ethnicity and most boys …” (U.S. Department of Education Office for Civil Rights, 2014, p. 1) suggesting that when it comes to schooling, Black girls are, indeed, “pushed out, overpoliced and underprotected” (Crenshaw, Ocen, & Nanda, 2015, p. 1). The authors of this chapter argue that youth advocates can use hip-hop culture, a tradition rich with resistant prose, to develop critical consciousness and engage Black girls in discussion about socially contrived binaries that reinforce the STPP. The authors demonstrate how the anti-oppressive lyrics of women emcees (e.g., Rapsody, Sa-Roc) can foster therapeutic alliances and dialogues with young Black girls, and how these lyrics might serve to inspire Black girls in composing their own counterhegemonic autobiographical narratives to resist the school-to-prison pipeline.
The school-to-prison pipeline is a term used to describe the pathway traveled by students from public schools to incarceration in secure juvenile detention and…
The school-to-prison pipeline is a term used to describe the pathway traveled by students from public schools to incarceration in secure juvenile detention and correctional programs. It begins with students who are marginalized by the education system because of their academic and behavioral issues. The pipeline leads from school failure and disciplinary exclusion to involvement with the juvenile justice system. Youth who are ethnic minorities (especially those who are African-American or Hispanic) as well as those with educational disabilities (especially those with learning and behavioral disorders) are significantly overrepresented in data sets representing key points along the pipeline (e.g., students with poor academic achievement, high rates of suspension, expulsion, and dropout) as well as their high rates of incarceration. From his personal perspective and experience with the juvenile justice system, the author attempts to explicate the pipeline, and to describe efforts to impact it positively.
The purpose of this paper is to examine the availability of training for police officers working in a school setting and to assess the relationship between training and…
The purpose of this paper is to examine the availability of training for police officers working in a school setting and to assess the relationship between training and the types of discipline school-based law enforcement (SBLE) officers most commonly administer to students.
Semi-structured interviews were conducted with SBLE officers in Texas over a six month period.
The findings suggests that almost 40 percent of SBLE officers have not received any specialized training in school policing and more than half report the need for more specialized training to improve job performance. The findings also suggest a relationship between training and the type of disciplinary response SBLE officers provide in schools.
The placement of law enforcement officers in schools serves to preserve campuses as safe and secure learning environments; however, it is also viewed as a catalyst for criminalizing student misconduct, often referred to as the school-to-prison pipeline. Although much of the existing literature on SBLE is focussed on its nexus with the school-to-prison pipeline, there remains a lack of investigation into the training SBLE officers receive and how this potentially impacts discipline outcomes in schools.
The school-to-prison pipeline is a booming pipeline that is the cause for alarm. Increasingly, this pipeline includes more of Chicano males, and this dynamic is reflected…
The school-to-prison pipeline is a booming pipeline that is the cause for alarm. Increasingly, this pipeline includes more of Chicano males, and this dynamic is reflected in low rates of high school graduates going to college contrasted with the growing number of Chicanos in the juvenile justice and court systems. This study focuses on the impacts of the school-to-prison pipeline on Chicano students. Furthermore, utilizing a CRT and LatCrit framework, this study centers the experiential knowledge that Chicano students contribute to conceptualizing ways of disrupting the school-to-prison pipeline. Themes of this study include the following: (1) Chicano student experiences with the school-to-prison pipeline, (2) innovation of discipline policy and practice, and (3) effective alternative practices to a zero tolerance framework. Through this, Chicano students point to a praxis grounded in community to clear educational pathways and interrupt the school-to-prison pipeline.
In this chapter, I present narratives of two Black men who represent a population of people who are often talked about but seldom heard from in school-to-prison pipeline…
In this chapter, I present narratives of two Black men who represent a population of people who are often talked about but seldom heard from in school-to-prison pipeline research. To analyze their stories, I employed a framework that centers on understanding human dignity and the conditions, circumstances, and experiences that threatened it. I found that their sense of self was eroded by moments of personal loss, disposal, and ways that even well-intentioned people marked them as “problems.” I explore how their eroded sense of self led them to engage in disruptive and destructive behaviors. I conclude by discussing the importance of supplementing school-to-prison pipeline research with Black boys’ and men’s first-hand accounts of their own experiences as a way of humanizing the primary subjects of this burgeoning area of education research.
The drive to improve learning and safety in our nation’s public schools has resulted in the widespread adoption of zero-tolerance disciplinary policies. The practice of…
The drive to improve learning and safety in our nation’s public schools has resulted in the widespread adoption of zero-tolerance disciplinary policies. The practice of punishing any school infraction regardless of extenuating circumstances has been particularly detrimental to students of color. Black and Latino students are more likely to be suspended, expelled, and/or referred to law enforcement for nonviolent and/or minor infractions. Students who are removed from school fall behind academically and have an increased risk of being arrested and thrust into the criminal justice system. This reality has moved the Obama administration to urge school officials to abandon overly zealous disciplinary policies. However, the recommendations set forth by the Obama administration are nonbinding and fail to address the root causes of racially discriminatory school discipline practices.
Any meaningful effort to understand and/or disrupt the pattern of pushing students out of schools and funneling them into the criminal justice system must consider the adverse effects of the following three factors: (1) unchecked racial biases among school personnel, (2) inadequately resourced poor performing schools, and (3) the ever-expanding economic inequality in society. Omitting of any of these items from the guidelines and recommendations represents a glaring limitation of the Supportive School Discipline Initiative as a tool for addressing racial disparities in school discipline and the school to prison pipeline.
We aim to show that students of color would benefit from “need-based” educational reforms, a Presidential Administration that directly addresses racial inequality, and economic policies that target the most financially strapped communities.
This chapter considers the school-to-prison pipeline (STPP) within the United States as a network of flows and feedback loops that connects the education and delinquency…
This chapter considers the school-to-prison pipeline (STPP) within the United States as a network of flows and feedback loops that connects the education and delinquency systems. This system is heavily biased to funnel students with disabilities, disproportionately from low-income minority families, away from productive educational outcomes through punitive, exclusionary, and restrictive measures that too often result in incarceration. Congress intended special education and disability rights laws to ameliorate injustice and ensure long-term positive outcomes for all students. Through a systems theory perspective, this chapter outlines key leverage points inherent in disability rights laws, which can and should be activated to interrupt and reverse the STPP. Many provisions within the law are overlooked or inadequately enacted within current educational practices. The authors present problem-solving strategies, rooted in the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) and other disability rights laws, for educators, juvenile justice advocates, and policymakers to use in order to reduce school exclusion and incarceration of vulnerable youth and to provide education opportunity for all students.
In the United States, Black preschoolers are suspended at disproportionately high rates when compared to other groups. This chapter examines the causes behind the…
In the United States, Black preschoolers are suspended at disproportionately high rates when compared to other groups. This chapter examines the causes behind the so-called “school-to-prison pipeline,” including the psychological predilection to not label a Black child’s behavior as “bad” but to label the child that way. We offer a personal narrative to ground our research in an approachable, anecdotal fashion in an attempt to remind researchers, policymakers, and educators that this is not just about statistics, although those are included as well. However, behind every statistic is a real child with a real family who is plagued by this pipeline. Furthermore, the personal narrative also sheds light on the overwhelming pressure and stress that simply comes from being Black, and raising Black children, in an America dismissively considered “post-racial.” Finally, and importantly, this chapter explores ways in which changes can help prevent the exploding Black prison population and investigates ways in which that change can functionally take place. It is not enough to acknowledge an ongoing injustice is occurring; we must fix it, no matter how uncomfortable that fix is or how challenging.
This introduction chapter provides context to the ubiquitous nature of school discipline disproportionality, which has morphed into what is now commonly known as…
This introduction chapter provides context to the ubiquitous nature of school discipline disproportionality, which has morphed into what is now commonly known as school-to-prison pipeline (STPP). A sample of major studies on school discipline research is presented to highlight the breadth and depth of the impact of discipline disparity on racially, culturally, and linguistically diverse students, low-income students, and students with disabilities. We also address how the interaction between implicit or explicit racism and discipline policies and practices exacerbates STPP. We acknowledge the efforts made by school systems to reverse the STPP trend through interventions such as restorative justice and positive behavioral intervention and support (PBIS). We posit that principals and teachers are critical agents in reforming the pervasive STPP trajectory. Finally, this chapter provides a synopsis of the rest of the chapters contained in this book.