The School to Prison Pipeline

From Virginia Board for People with Disabilities: For Complete Post, Click Here…

The “School to Prison Pipeline ” describes how students who are punished for behavior by removal from the classroom (exclusionary discipline) are more likely to become involved in the juvenile or adult criminal justice systems.

Purpose of the Assessment

To assess current trends in school discipline that disproportionately affect students with disabilities and students of color with disabilities and to highlight school-based interventions that can reduce the discipline disparities that lead to the disproportionate criminalization and school push out of students with disabilities.

Nationally and in Virginia, students with disabilities, and particularly, Black students with disabilities, are over-represented in three key points of the school to prison pipeline: exclusionary discipline, referrals to law enforcement sentencing to juvenile correctional centers.

Virginia has taken positive steps to reduce the use of suspensions, expulsions, and referrals to law enforcement for misdemeanor-level, school-based conduct. While progress has been made, the Virginia Board for People with Disabilities conducted a review of national best practices and Virginia’s discipline data, and the Board notes key findings and makes 13 recommendations to eliminate discipline disparities and end the school to prison pipeline.

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