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WHEREAS, the 2011 National Education Policy Report found that K-12 public school student suspensions for nonviolent infractions are increasing, setting the stage for chronic truancy, impacting learning, and increasing the risk of drop out; and
WHEREAS, it has been shown that restorative methods of discipline for nonviolent infractions are often more effective than punitive ones for improving student retention, grades and graduation; and
WHEREAS, African American students in middle schools are suspended at disproportionately high rates to non-minority students according to national statistics; and
WHEREAS, this disproportionately high rate involving African Americans and Latinos, whether intentional or not, is indicative of institutionalized racism.
THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that the NAACP will work aggressively toward getting the U.S. Department of Education and all State Departments of Education and all local school districts to issue and promote to legislators funded mandates such as:
- Requiring all public-school districts to generate and report annually to the state and to the public (via their district website) statistics on disciplinary actions regarding all enrolled students by type of infraction, type of disciplinary action and its duration as well as age, grade level, race/ethnicity and gender of the student;
- Requiring each such school district to develop and implement restorative justice methods, a peer judicial system, school wide positive behavioral support and classroom and behavioral management training for teachers to reduce nonviolent infractions;
- Requiring each such school district to develop and implement an action plan for reducing the racial/ethnic disproportionality of suspensions for non-violent infractions; and
- Requiring all State Departments of Education to include "adequate progress" toward achieving such proportionality as one of its mandatory criteria for continued state funding without restriction enhancements.