Over the past year, attention given to the school-to-prison pipeline has intensified to the point that even Attorney General Eric Holder 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.