The Cost of School-to-Prison Pipeline: Racially Biased School Suspensions Cost Taxpayers $35 Billion Each Year
The increasingly harsh, zero-tolerance policies adopted by American school systems in the last decade have led to record numbers of suspensions, expulsions and school-based arrests in the nation’s most vulnerable populations.
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“The fiscal penalties are staggering: $35 billion.”
Black students in the U.S. are three to four times more likely to be expelled or suspended than their white peers, according to data from the U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights.
SOPHIA NAHLI ALLISON
VISUAL JOURNALIST – Media Arts Educator
Born in 1987 + a native of South Central Los Angeles, I am passionate about stories that humanize the voices of youth, people of color, and the LGBTQ community. I believe storytelling is a tool for social change.
This spring I will be a participant of The New York Times Student Journalism Institute as a video journalist, and the summer intern at The Seattle Times.
I’ve interned at The Tampa Bay Times and The Chicago Reporter. I was a participant of the Eddie Adams Workshop XXVIII, the 2014 New York Times Lens Blog Portfolio Review and NABJ’s student multimedia projects fellowship. I’ve taught photo and video to youth in Chicago and Los Angeles and I am a grateful recipient of the Chicago 3Arts Award, a $25,000 grant for my work as a teaching artist.
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Researchers know that suspensions directly increase the risk of students dropping out later in high school. Only 72.5 percent of Black students graduated high school at the end of the 2013-2014 school year, compared to 87.2 percent of whites.
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