Students of color, disabled students, and low-income students are all disciplined more often and more harshly than their classmates, despite evidence that they don’t misbehave more often or engage in more troubling behavior.
The ACLU of Washington has been working to change this by promoting better state discipline policies and fairer school practices. We know there are alternatives to suspensions and expulsions that more effectively improve student behavior and the school climate. And we are trying to promote these best practices by engaging policy-makers and the community in conversations about this issue. So we were excited to see that the Kitsap Sun is devoting a week-long series to this important issue. And on the national front, a recent op-ed in the New York Times echoed the ACLU’s call for more effective school discipline policies.