School to Prison Pipeline
- 40% of students expelled from U.S. schools each year are black.
- 70% of students involved in “in-school” arrests or referred to law enforcement are black or Latino.
- Black students are 3.5 times more likely to be suspended than whites.
- Black and Latino students are twice as likely to not graduate high school as whites.
- 68% of all males in state and federal prisons do not have a high school diploma.
*see School to Prison Pipeline fact sheet This website also shares statistics about the “foster care to prison” pipeline that also disproportionately impacts youth of color.
- A 2007 study by the Advancement Project and the Power U Center for Social Change says that for every 100 students who were suspended, 15 were Black, 7.9 were American Indian, 6.8 were Latino and 4.8 were white.
- The same study reports that the U.S. spends almost $70 billion annually on incarceration, probation and parole. This number lends itself to a 127% funding increase for incarceration between 1987-2007. Compare that to a 21% increase in funding for higher education in the same 20-year span.
I could go on and on about this devastating phenomenon. Instead, I will just point you to some more resources. And hope that you continue to see how far and wide and deep the implications of our cultural and societal irrational penchant for punishment go.
- The School-to-Prison Pipeline: A Nationwide Problem for Equal Rights — “Advocates point to data showing that excessive disciplinary policies disproportionately target black, low-income, and disabled students.”
- Texas Appleseed School to Prison Pipeline Project — Texas Appleseed researches and reports on the impact of school discipline policies; ticketing, arrest and use of force in public schools; court involvement in student discipline; and the effectiveness of alternative education programs to help close pathways to dropout and incarceration. Go here for their excellent reports and other publications.
- It even starts in preschool! Read more about this deeply disturbing reality in these articles: Salon ; The Nation ; TIME
- Police see black children as less innocent and less young than white children — Salon ; Journal of Personality and Social Psychology
Do we really truly believe that our children, ALL our children, are our nation’s future? If so, why don’t we act like it?