The Equity Line is a blog by The Education Trust, which promotes high academic achievement for all students at all levels — pre-kindergarten through college. Their goal is to close the gaps in opportunity and achievement that consign far too many young people — especially those from low-income families or who are black, Latino, or American Indian — to lives on the margins of the American mainstream.
"The Dignity in Schools Campaign (DSC) challenges the systemic problem of pushout in our nation's schools and advocates for the human right of every young person to a quality education and to be treated with dignity. The DSC unites parents, youth, advocates and educators to support alternatives to a culture of zero-tolerance, punishment and removal in our schools.
The DSC started over five years ago when local grassroots and advocacy groups fighting to end school pushout came together to share information and strategies and build a common framework for dignity and human rights in our schools."
Teaching Tolerance, a project of the Southern Poverty Law Center, provides this comprehensive list of alternatives to suspension.
"Alternatives to Suspension There are a number of ways that schools can cut down on suspensions so that students do not miss class time. Here are some options:
"For years, students in Mobile, Ala., endured school climates in which they were regularly suspended for such minor infractions as tardiness, talking and uniform violations. Over a three-year period, more than 1,700 long-term suspensions—suspensions lasting between 11 days and several months—were doled out.
The problem isn’t isolated in Mobile. Suspensions have been steadily increasing across the nation since the 1970s. According to the Advancement Project, a civil rights organization that tackles inequity with strategies and community alliance, more than 3 million youth are suspended in the United States each year.
In a recent legal settlement with the SPLC, Mobile County Public Schools agreed to make significant changes to its discipline policy for the benefit of the students of the city. These changes will keep more students in school and learning.
Six immediate changes will be implemented:
These are simple steps that every school can take today to create a climate in which students are supported rather than pushed out. Supportive behavior policies are a win for students, schools and the whole community."