Breaking Brown

March 21, 2014

Even Black Preschoolers More Likely to be Suspended

Even Black Preschoolers More Likely to be Suspended

Over the past year, attention given to the school-to-prison pipeline has intensified to the point that even Attorney General Eric school-prisonHolder has stepped in to offer new guidelines to schools. The new guidelines offered by Holder are intended to reduce disciplinary disparities between minority students and their white counterparts.

As it turns out, the bias against black students begins before they even enter elementary school. According to a piece by the Associated Press, the bias against black kids begins in preschool.

Although blacks only make up about 18 percent of all preschoolers, they represent half of preschoolers who are suspended more than once, according to a report by the Education Department.

Thus far attention had been placed on middle and especially high school aged kids being disciplined and even arrested for minor infractions, but this is the first study which reports on bias against black preschool students.

BreakingBrown reported in January on how a water balloon fight at a school led to the arrest of eight students. It was a common water balloon fight which would’ve normally resulted in a trip to the principal’s office, but because of the desire to get minority kids caught up in the the criminal system so that they can be fed into private prison companies, these kids were carted off to jail.

Texas students risk being sent to adult courts and sentenced to jail for missing school.

Data clearly demonstrates that black boys and girls are more likely to be suspended than other students.

“This critical report shows that racial disparities in school discipline policies are not only well documented among older students, but actually begin during preschool,” Attorney General Eric Holder said. “Every data point represents a life impacted and a future potentially diverted or derailed. This administration is moving aggressively to disrupt the school-to-prison pipeline in order to ensure that all of our young people have equal educational opportunities.”

Daniel Losen, director of the Center for Civil Rights Remedies for the Civil Rights Project at UCLA, told the Associated Press that it would be better to move a preschooler to a different educational setting than to suspend the child since a child that young is usually not a threat to classmates or teachers.



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2 thoughts on “Even Black Preschoolers More Likely to be Suspended

  1. BlackheywoodHeywood says:

    I am criticized and attacked even by some misguided Black ,when I say there is a War on Black males in America. It’s desire to criminalize our Black males as early as possible. The darker the male,the greater the chances he will become prey for those who practice this brand of racism.

  2. wills11111 says:

    Why is this surprising? And what, if any, evidence is there that this is the result of discrimination? Why are we supposed to assume that the skewed numbers show bias, rather than reflecting the reality that black children misbehave more than whites. Without some actual statistics showing that black students don’t disproportionately violate school policies, there is little story here. 

    Blacks are incarcerated at 6 times the rate of whites—but not because of bias; it’s because they commit far more crime. Study after study has shown that the percentage of black suspects correlates almost exactly with percentage of arrests and convictions. And when controlling for variables like prior offenses, aggravating circumstances, etc., it is clear that, if anything, blacks are sentenced more lightly than whites for the same crimes.

    Blacks make up only 13% of the US population, yet are responsible for about half the murders—they commit murder at 8 times the rate whites do. This is not “bias”—all known murders are compiled in the federal UCR. 

    Ultimately, this highlights the problem with racial identity politics, and the reason why a color-blind society is so essential: we are all equal under the law, but we are not all the same. Just as there are differences between individuals, if we insist on grouping individuals by skin color, we will find significant group differences. How is this helpful? Whose cause does it help to know group differences in, say, IQ tests?

    As egalitarians, we find that intolerable, so we pretend the test is “biased”—when it’s obviously completely colorblind. We legislate in an attempt to meet unreasonable quotas—and advance nonsense like “disparate impact” tests that assume prejudice when outcomes fail to conform to a fiction, to quotas. In a country that is obviously a thousand times more tolerant than the one we lived in just a generation or two ago, we’re forced to look harder and harder to find the “racism” to explain different group outcomes. 

    But there is a solution: we don’t have to construct an alternate, imaginary universe to “feel okay” about ourselves—all we have to do is stop grouping ourselves by color, and let each of us be a unique individual. Forget about comparing percentages of brown to pink to beige—focus on people, instead. Replace the racial grievance cottage industry with efforts that produce real results, that build self-esteem rather than tear it down, that heal old wounds rather than inflame and profit from them. MLK had 23 part right, and it is terribly sad to see his legacy shoved aside in favor of a victim mentality that serves no one, least of all the victims.

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