In the News: Candidate Trump Talked Tough on Crime. Does That Signal an End to School Discipline Reform?
Will the way American schools address student discipline change once Donald Trump becomes president?
In an article for The 74, Mark Keierleber talks to many observers who expect Trump to reverse the Obama administration’s messaging on school discipline.
In 2014, the Obama administration released guidelines calling on schools to rethink zero-tolerance policies and end racial disparities in school discipline. Recognizing that disparities in disciplinary rates may be caused by a range of factors, the U.S. Departments of Education and Justice said in a joint letter that these differences cannot be explained by more frequent or more serious behavior by students of color, but rather, “schools may be engaging in racial discrimination that violates the federal civil rights law.”
However, Keierleber goes on to point out,
In an October article for the periodical Education Next, researchers Matthew Steinberg and Johanna Lacoe argued that current evidence is inconclusive on whether disproportionate discipline is actually the result of bias, and researchers have been unable to show how exclusionary discipline affects school climate or students’ future lives. The article also said that more research is needed to determine whether alternatives to exclusionary discipline will affect safety and student outcomes.
– Education Next