Racial Disparities in Discipline Are Growing and Critics Perplexed by DeVos Listening Sessions | Last Week’s Best Articles

Our team is always seeking the latest news in the field of education. As advocates for a quality education for ALL students, we know we have to stay up-to-date on everything that’s going on in the education spheres of our nation…from the White House to the local public school district, from new legislation to the small acts of bravery and kindness made by a single teacher, from the milestones and celebrations to the hazardous injustices affecting many of our nations students.

Here are the best stories we came across last week…because we believe you should stay up-to-date, too!


Racial disparities in school discipline are growing, federal data show via Washington Post

Black students faced greater rates of suspension, expulsion and arrest than their white classmates, according to federal data released Tuesday, disparities that have widened despite efforts to fix them.

The findings, drawn from the Civil Rights Data Collection, come as Education Secretary Betsy DeVos is considering curbing the department’s role in investigating racial disparities in discipline. Those probes reflected efforts by the Obama administration to scrutinize schools with unexplained disparities in their discipline rates.


Critics perplexed by DeVos’ ‘listening sessions’ on school discipline via ABC News

“If the Department was hoping to have school leaders come out vigorously against the guidance, that wasn’t what they achieved,” advocacy director Sasha Pudelski told ABC News.

“Based on what we know, our school leaders are not taking their cue from Washington,” she continued. According to the association’s latest data, “only 16 percent of members indicated they have changed their policies in light of the guidance.”


The Criminalization of Black Males Starts in Our Schools via Citizen Ed

The truth is that Black men don’t just become criminalized as adults, but rather as early as preschool and inside of classrooms throughout America.

The Starbucks employee who felt the need to call the police on two black men for an offense we can assume would not land white customers under arrest, is simply an extension of teachers who continue to let their biases lead to excessive discipline for Black students.


One thing to read this week…

Have we made progress on achievement gaps? Looking at evidence from the new NAEP results via Brookings

Last week, the National Assessment Governing Board and National Center for Education Statistics released results from the 2017 National Assessment of Education Progress (NAEP). Often referred to as “the Nation’s Report Card,” these results provide a bi-annual barometer on how states and the country as a whole are performing in the classroom.

Though the failure to make overall progress in recent years is disappointing, there are some positive trends with respect to achievement gaps. Racial and ethnic achievement gaps have been on a gradual, and at times bumpy, decline since the 1970s.

In contrast to the improvement in racial and ethnic achievement gaps, however, achievement gaps based on students’ eligibility for free or reduced-price lunch—our best proxy for poverty in the NAEP data—do not show much progress.


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