Derail the school-to-prison pipeline in Georgia

Rob Rhodes is director of projects with the Georgia Appleseed Center for Law and Justice. This is his first piece for the AJC Get Schooled blog:

By Rob Rhodes

Along with the fiscal cliff, the United States faces an “education cliff” — the growing problem of unacceptably low graduation rates made worse, at least in part, by the reliance on school disciplinary practices that contribute to the “school to prison pipeline.”

Georgia’s significantly lagging high school graduation rate is the result of many factors. A key cause may be an overuse of exclusionary discipline, such as suspensions and expulsions, and the regular referral of incidents of schoolyard misbehavior to juvenile court.

The Georgia Appleseed Center for Law and Justice has conducted a comprehensive study of student discipline policies, which found sharp differences among the school districts in the use of exclusionary discipline.

In 2011, eight school districts reported overall out-of-school suspension rates of less than 1 percent including one district with a student population in excess of 30,000. On the other hand, 10 districts reported rates in excess of 15 percent, about double the state average.

Of note, low out-of-school suspension school districts consistently outperformed the average graduation rate and graduated students at much higher rates than districts that used out-of-school suspensions more often.

For 2011, using the new graduation rate formula, Georgia’s four-year graduation rate was 67.5 percent. School districts with relatively rare use of out-of-school suspensions reported graduation rates on the average of 77.2 percent, as compared to a 64.4 percent average rate in districts that use them often.

While low graduation rates certainly are the result of a number of factors, a clear negative correlation exists between extensive use of exclusionary discipline and educational attainment in Georgia’s public schools.

Effective student discipline is vitally important to ensuring that all students are provided with a safe environment that is conducive to learning. However, each child in our public school system, even ones who are sometimes unruly, should also have a reasonable opportunity to obtain a quality high school education.

We recognize the very difficult balancing act that public school educators must perform every day to support these two vital interests. It would, therefore, be unfair to the thousands of Georgia K-12 educators who are committed to the success of their students to criticize the overuse of exclusionary discipline in the absence of effective alternatives.

The good news is that there are sound, evidence-based practices that can maintain collective safety and order while nurturing individual students. Such practices may include the implementation of school-wide climate enhancement efforts using the framework of positive behavioral intervention and support. Another approach may be increasing the efficacy of in-school suspensions. While there is no “one size fits all” answer, there is growing evidence that, with focused leadership and adequate resources, effective alternatives to exclusionary discipline can be implemented.

There are many reasons for low graduation rates, and we do not believe that addressing school discipline issues is a “silver bullet” solution. We do believe, however, that the changes discussed above can be implemented at a relatively low cost and will be a meaningful part of a comprehensive strategy to allow Georgia’s children to flow through a “school to opportunity” pipeline.

–From Maureen Downey, for the AJC Get Schooled blog

172 comments Add your comment

Pride and Joy

December 20th, 2012
6:38 am

In school suspension WORKS! We had it in our small town high school many years ago. WIth suspension, the bad kids got “days off” and it was like a reward for them. In school suspension was much more effective.
The kids were placed in a room without their friends to distract and they had to learn with just them and one teacher.
It was no fun to distract and “act up” because there was no one around to witness the foolishness. Just the teacher, a book and the kid.
Besides, if you suspend a kid, what do they do outside of school? They get into trouble, often committing crimes.
We cannot expect parents to eitehr stay home from work and take care of the kid because most often, the kind of kids taht get suspended are the kids who have ignorant parents, such as the ones who drove behind a school bus and told her daughter to beat up on another kid.
We have to start earlier with prevention and cannot wait until high school. I don’t encourage in school suspension with small kids, I mean intervening with the parents and get social workers out there monitoring the kids so that the problem is nipped in the bud. Often, personalities and habits are permanently established by high school.

redweather

December 20th, 2012
6:43 am

The writer of this article is quite a dancer. To wit:

“While low graduation rates certainly are the result of a number of factors, a clear negative correlation exists between extensive use of exclusionary discipline and educational attainment in Georgia’s public schools.”

“We recognize the very difficult balancing act that public school educators must perform every day to support these two vital interests. It would, therefore, be unfair to the thousands of Georgia K-12 educators who are committed to the success of their students to criticize the overuse of exclusionary discipline in the absence of effective alternatives.”

mountain man

December 20th, 2012
6:43 am

“While low graduation rates certainly are the result of a number of factors, a clear negative correlation exists between extensive use of exclusionary discipline and educational attainment in Georgia’s public schools.”

Correlation does not prove causation. Does the tail wag the dog? “Exclusionary discipline” does not CAUSE a person to drop out, rather, the same attitiude and behavior that gives rise to the need for discipline CAUSES them to drop out. We need MORE discipline, not less.

The author has it backwards.

catlady

December 20th, 2012
6:51 am

Although I don’t put a lot of faith in school disciplinary reports (after seeing how some things don’t get “written down” and thus “didn’t happen”), did the authors statistically control for the fact that in low SES schools, there are likely more Level 3-4 infractions? That is, I would expect that some schools have low exclusion rates simply because they have significantly fewer serious infractions. If you rarely have student on student assault, or student on teacher assault, or destruction of property, or sexual assault, you would have fewer excludable offenses, and therefore look better. These better behaving kids ARE a lot more likely to graduate.

What I see is too little, too late disciplinary action. Misbehaving students are allowed to interfere with hundreds of fellow-students’ education for years before serious measures are taken.

Sorry, I don’t think one or five students should ever be allowed, for any reason, to derail the education of the others. No excuses!

Juris Imprudence

December 20th, 2012
7:14 am

I was going to point out that correlation doesn’t show causation, but the commenter mountain man beat me to it (below).

He’s quite right. I’d add that the blog post author’s perspective seems to me to be wrong. It is that every student has some RIGHT to graduate high school, that even antisocial, miscreant students benefit from a degree, and that society somehow loses out when they do not graduate.

I’d rather look at the question this way: does a consistently (and even criminally) disruptive, harmful student have the right to our ongoing taxes to fund his delinquent behavior? Do his parents? Moreover, does he or she have the right to have continual support, when that behavior severely harms the school environment as a whole, when my child is afraid he’ll have to fight to keep his lunch money every day, and when teachers must devote 50% of their class time to keeping the disruptive student in check?

Often – perhaps even more often than in schools’ current practice – exclusion IS an answer.

SGA Teacher

December 20th, 2012
7:22 am

Before you jump too far onto the discipline wagon, some food for thought:

1. Schools are sharply penalized for suspending too many students, as are teacher for referring too many students to an administrator for disciplinary issues.
2. A suspension represents a severe infraction: a fight, drugs, attacking a teacher, cussing at a teacher, etc. It is also a final step in a series of decisions based on previous disciplinary action.
3. It is incredibly easy to teach a drowning person how to swim, especially when you are standing on the bank watching through binoculars.

This blog was a source of merry amusement this morning. Thanks Maureen.

Mary Elizabeth

December 20th, 2012
7:38 am

“. . .a clear negative correlation exists between extensive use of exclusionary discipline and educational attainment in Georgia’s public schools.”
==========================================

Students often “act out” because they are not able to function on the grade level material presented. We MUST start to understand that correctly addressing the individual functioning levels of students – whatever their grade level – is key for academics and discipline to improve. Once more I will give this information on this blog: For over a dozen years, in testing 500 incoming 9th grade students each September, the functioning levels of those 500 incoming students, in reading, were in the range of 4th grade level to grade level 16, with half (or 250 students annually) of those students functioning on 6th grade level, or below, in reading (in 9th grade). These individual variances MUST be addressed or the pipeline from drop-outs to incarceration will continue.

Suggestion: When students are suspended to In-House settings, schools should invest in hiring Reading Specialists who are trained in teaching to individual instructional needs and in teaching study skills. These teaching specialists could work with students, individually, in their assigned course work, while students are housed in In-House suspension. In-house placement is an ideal place and opportunity to address individual needs of students, without a large class in the background for teachers to have to instsruct. The care given to these students individually in In-House would, also, help them to release some of the anger behind much of their discipline problems. Of course, the “rule” of no talking during In-House placement would have to lifted. We must think “outside of the box” and in more creative and bold ways in order to address discipline problems and to address erroneous instructional level teaching, which are precursors to the drop-out to incarceration reality. We must stop thinking in terms of “blame and punishment” and start thinking, instead, in terms of what will, realistically, solve this destructive problem.

http://maryelizabethsings.wordpress.com/2012/01/15/about-education-essay-1-mastery-learning/

kcinrd

December 20th, 2012
7:38 am

This is one of those catch 22 topics. It is in the best interest to have students graduate, but at the risk of others in the classroom with discipline issues? Yes, this question is rhetorical.

Society loves to come up with policy and procedure for schools. Where the ‘real’ issue, to me, is the family…..broken homes, etc. is often too much to overcome for students to become a success (I define this as a graduate); however, we can’t legislate families, or lack thereof.

(Try to ) fix the home life via early sex education/single parent homes, etc. and potentially head-off issues seems to be the most proactive early discipline detection measure to avoid jail. Adjusting methods of discipline in schools can’t hurt, but it’s often too late…..

Lee

December 20th, 2012
7:40 am

“The good news is that there are sound, evidence-based practices that can maintain collective safety and order while nurturing individual students. Such practices may include the implementation of school-wide climate enhancement efforts using the framework of positive behavioral intervention and support. Another approach may be increasing the efficacy of in-school suspensions. While there is no “one size fits all” answer, there is growing evidence that, with focused leadership and adequate resources, effective alternatives to exclusionary discipline can be implemented.”

Or, you could just bust the little brat’s butt with a paddle and be done with it…

drew (former teacher)

December 20th, 2012
7:43 am

I agree with all the posters above. And enough with the sensational “school to prison pipeline” headline. I’m not aware of a single person being sent to prison because they dropped out (or got kicked out) of school. It’s more like a “criminal activity to prison” pipeline.

“…each child in our public school system, even ones who are sometimes unruly, should also have a reasonable opportunity to obtain a quality high school education.” They already have a MORE than reasonable opportunity to get an education. Maybe, just maybe, they either aren’t fit for the opportunity, or CHOOSE to pass on it.

Vince

December 20th, 2012
7:50 am

There are many factors affecting school discipline. One major factor is attitudinal and it isn’t easy to change. It would be most helpful if parents, when receiving a call from the teacher or administrator about their child’s misbehavior would respond with, “Thank you for calling. I’m sorry that happened and I will take care of it.”

It proves very counterproductive for the parent to respond with, “I know my child and he wouldn’t do that. What was the teacher doing? What did she say to my child that made him do that? That teacher is the problem.”

Therein lies the difference between low and high suspension rates….low and high graduation rates…low and high achievement….etc, etc…..

Ga Tech Rules

December 20th, 2012
8:11 am

Oh great, a proposal to lower the already low high school graduation requirements, so the criminals can have a worthless piece of paper saying they graduated! The more the diploma is watered down, the less value it is as a screening tool for intelligence, perseverance, drive, ambition, and general intelligence. The college degree has also been watered down in a similar manner such that now may employers are asking prospective employees for their SAT scores in addition to their college transcripts. I read an interesting article yesterday that said a college degree today for 90% of kids is not a path to a higher socioeconomic status, rather it is a ticket to a lower lifestyle due to a decrease in earning power and massive student loan debt. Only for the very top of the socioeconomic class does a college degree result in an increase in earning power. I will link the article here, it is an odd website, there will be three articles across the top, and the main article in the center of the page below the three at the top: http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2012-12-19/sorry-poor-kids-road-rags-riches-no-longer-goes-through-college

Andy

December 20th, 2012
8:13 am

Why is it 60 years later, the black population as a whole still can’t assimilate into society? The black kids sit next to and get the same education as the white kids, yet they still can’t as a majority even make through an easy 12 years in the GA Dept Education.

Ga Tech Rules

December 20th, 2012
8:15 am

Here is a link to the original story busting the rags to riches myth of a college degree: http://www.reuters.com/subjects/income-inequality/massachusetts

kcinrd

December 20th, 2012
8:16 am

This is one of those catch 22 topics. It is in the best interest to have students graduate, but at the risk of others in the classroom with discipline issues? Yes, this question is rhetorical.

Society loves to come up with policy and procedure for schools. Where the ‘real’ issue, to me, is the family…..broken homes, etc. is often too much to overcome for students to become a success (I define this as a graduate); however, we can’t legislate families, or lack thereof.

(Try to ) fix the home life via early sex education/single parent homes, etc. and potentially head-off issues seems to be the most proactive early discipline detection measure to avoid jail. Adjusting methods of discipline in schools can’t hurt, but it’s often too late…..

Joshua_Linskey

December 20th, 2012
8:19 am

Perhaps the problem is the people of Georgia?

skipper

December 20th, 2012
8:22 am

Until discipline is handled, all is for naught. A teacher is not allowed to touch a student now, whereas back in the day if a student mis-behaved a good old-fashioned butt-whoopin’ was in order. Laugh if you want, but the problems were much less. Now, it is acceptable for a student to “cuss” a teacher, and it is (of course) the teacher’s fault if ANY retaliatory action is taken. Funny how all the learned psychology folks come up with answers. Give the busses, classrooms, and schoolgrounds back to the teachers. Cut out all this “feel-good” and “self-esteem” b.s. that is the rule of the day. Take your butt to school, behave, and if you don’t there are consequences. There is not ONE of the latest hypotheses on the new way to handle education and discipline that has shown much merit. Until society wises up and realizes that the culture and lack of home-training are the biggest factors, expecting the schools to work miracles is a real reach!

indigo

December 20th, 2012
8:23 am

Schools must practice exclusionary discipline.

They don’t dare try to come up with any “effective alternatives” because of the fear of trial lawyers swarming around them like locusts.

Not PC and a HS teacher

December 20th, 2012
8:27 am

A good starting place would be for alternative schools to actually be different than a long-term version of In-School-Suspension.

Next, stop pretending the teacher probably provoked the student’s attitude/behavior.

Then, let guidance counselors function as something beyond a scheduling clerk or college admissions scribe and do some actual counselling with student showing behavior problems.

Most of any school’s discipline policy does little to address the behavior of the student and more to the point shows a paper trail that protects the school district from legal action by the parents of other students.

indigo

December 20th, 2012
8:27 am

Andy – 8:13

That’s a very good question.

Unfortunately, America is so overrun with political correctness that I doubt we’ll ever get a very good answer.

CTE Supporter

December 20th, 2012
8:29 am

The solution is more rigorous Career & Technical Education in our middle schools and high schools. These programs combine academic learning with hands-on real world application. If you kid wants to be an accountant then they probably should take a business education course. If they want to be an automotive technician an automotive class would be good. If they like horticulture agriculture is the way to go. We have pushed the college-only dream and forgotten that America was built with skilled labor and not degrees.

Patrick

December 20th, 2012
8:30 am

Lower your standards and your performance numbers will go up. The Gwinnett County Public School solution to improving their disciplinary reports. Who thinks up the babble?

bootney farnsworth

December 20th, 2012
8:32 am

honor the wishes of the kids who don’t want to be there.
put them out.

its the authors sort of logic which created much of the current problems we face. doubling down
is a bad idea

Beverly Fraud

December 20th, 2012
8:33 am

“by the reliance on school disciplinary practices that contribute to the “school to prison pipeline”

We interrupt this message to introduce some commond@mnsense

Its not the discipline it the lack of discipline.

It’s the 8 year old Johnny who can’t read but was promoted anyway because mamma complained. It’s the 12 year old Johnny who sexually harassed a teacher, but was let off the hook by a spineless administrator after momma complained. It’s the 16 year old Johnny who physically assaulted a classmate but it was called “acting disrespectful” because the school didn’t want an incident on their record…after mamma whined he was “being disrespected, he had to do something.

Then 22 year old Johnny, who can’t read and has no skill robs two people at gun point. Mamma and Johnny find out they can’t go to the school board and complain, because there actually is some accountability in this world, the real world, as opposed to the school world they’ve been living in.

Then mamma cries “he was such a good boy” as they lead him away.

Georgia

December 20th, 2012
8:38 am

How ironic that the author’s name is Rhodes. I don’t want to be overly diacritical of Rob Rhodes, who was the perfect choice to illustrate this issue, but…..”School-wide climate enhancements…..Framework of positive behavioral intervention and support…Silver bullet. (did he really use that term?)….Exclusionary discipline…Education Cliff. (Never let a good cliche go stale, eh?)….School to prison pipeline. (Pants on the ground)…. School to opportunity…. no one size fits all. (like lingerie?)….

Then there’s this gem of gems for the ages: “Unfair to criticize the overuse of exclusionary discipline in the absence of alternatives…..there’s growing evidence that with adequate resources and focused leadership, effective alternatives can be implemented.”

This guy has invented circular gobbledeegook.

Allow me: “If youze kicks a kids outs of schools, he aints gonna graduates.” period.

So what can you kick a kid out of school for? Would Snooki and her mini me, Honey Boo Boo get kicked out of school for their act? Next time, Mr Rhodes, say it, don’t cliche it.

Andy

December 20th, 2012
8:39 am

Bingo Beverly, Bingo!

Private Citizen

December 20th, 2012
8:43 am

No attention to excessive use of law to imprison? A joint in the car sends a person to jail for six months? This is first person information to me from a young man who just got out of jail. Meanwhile, Colorado and Washington state have legalised marijuana. US incareration has increased x4 since the 1980’s. To call this a “school to prison pipeline” is ignoring who is making judgement to put some many is jail / prison and for what.

Private Citizen

December 20th, 2012
8:45 am

Beverly you bought into the proxy, the presented context. The context is wrong. USA has more people per capita in prisons / jails of any country in the world. Does this not seem notable to you, Ms. Sharp Wits? I mean, c’mon, raise your head out of the sand.

old school doc

December 20th, 2012
8:49 am

We live in a society, who for whatever reason, is doing a poor job of parenting. If the schools are to improve, they will have to take up many of the jobs formerly performed by parents. WE as a society need to really decide if we are all in, or just continue doing this halfway bandaid CYA stuff we currently do now.
My suggestions: 1. at the elementary level- set the tone. Provide incentives for proper behavior, dress and timeliness. Be fair, but ruthless. Once Johnny misses out on fun 2-3 times because he is late, he will be begging moms to get him to school ontime.
2. Consider alternative or seperate classes school for behaviorally challenged elementary level kids. As it is in our school, the kids are already treated as prisoners: they have no recess ( not sure why, is it to reduce fights?), they cannot talk ever, even at lunch, they walk in single file lines. For well behaved children like mine, this environment is dreadful and she will be pulled out soon to a school where kids are allowed some freedoms with approriate behavior. As of now, they are treating all kids like prisoners–no fun at all.
3. consider setting up some sort of pro bono lawyer system for teachers/admin: to back them up when they try to enforce school policy that parents may not like.

Mary Elizabeth

December 20th, 2012
8:55 am

“Nine of 10 prison inmates in Georgia are high school dropouts.”
———————————————————————————————-

Source: http://blogs.ajc.com/get-schooled-blog/2012/08/03/truancy-and-tardiness-does-going-after-parents-work/

Crash

December 20th, 2012
8:58 am

“even ones who are sometimes unruly, should also have a reasonable opportunity to obtain a quality high school education.” No! They should NOT! If a child is unruly they don’t deserve to be in class causing disruptions, preventing other students from learning. I am an Atlanta native. I went through DeKalb County schools. In elementary school, if you didn’t behave, you were gone. I don’t know where they went but they never came back to our school. Our school was a place of discipline and learning High school was similar until about 1971 when integration began. Behavior and educational standards were lowered, so as not to embarrass any black students who couldn’t make the grade, and it has been downhill ever since.

Andy

December 20th, 2012
9:04 am

A joint in the car doesn’t send you to jail for 6 months.

Best case scenario the cop has you grind it into the pavement because it’s not worth his paperwork.

Worst case scenario first offender of VGSCA of less than one ounce of weed is going to get a slap on the hand like pre-trial diversion unless the perp has other priors.

Private Citizen

December 20th, 2012
9:05 am

We live in a society, who for whatever reason, is doing a poor job of parenting.

http://www.demossnewspond.com/pf/additional/statistics_concerning_children_of_prisoners

Chuck Shick

December 20th, 2012
9:05 am

Sorry, Private Citizen…I’m with Beverly on this one. The kids today have been institutionally programmed to disrespect authority (unless it is their own??). They have been enabled by their lazy parents and the poor teachers are left to themselves to sort it all out.

Couple that with a fraidy-cat mentality of the local school boards and opportunistic lawyers and there’s no wonder we have our jails and prisons full.

Ga Tech Rules

December 20th, 2012
9:05 am

Is this article implying a causality link between failing to take advantage of a free public education and being a criminal? I think the link is backwards, the characteristics of criminals prevent them from completing the requirements for high school graduation. Just giving them a high school diploma will not prevent them from being criminals, it will just give them false credentials with which to trick employers into hiring them, and later regretting that hiring decision as they are looted and robbed. We need to stop confusing earned credentials with a piece of paper, the real credentials are inside the person who did the work, passed the tests, showed up everyday for class, and did not commit crimes.

bootney farnsworth

December 20th, 2012
9:06 am

when I was in school, I LOV, bnED in school suspension. LOVED it. I got more hallway cred for my bad behavior, and my status as a rebel rose.

in school suspension showed everyone no matter how much I disrupted class, disrespected teachers, damaged school property…..the school wasn’t gonna do a damn thing. all the perks of going to school – when I went – and none of the fallout.

HDB

December 20th, 2012
9:08 am

Andy

December 20th, 2012
8:13 am
“Why is it 60 years later, the black population as a whole still can’t assimilate into society? The black kids sit next to and get the same education as the white kids, yet they still can’t as a majority even make through an easy 12 years in the GA Dept Education.”

Have you thought to question the advantages that the white population have over the black population…starting with financial resources. In many cases, funding is lacking in predominately black school systems….and many homes don’t have access to modern technology. When financial resources are similar, many black students DO perform at a comparable level.

Have you also thought to question the ATTITUDES of white Americans when it comes to educating minorities, i.e., treating educated minorities as an EXCEPTION rather than the norm?? There has to be an attitudinal change…on BOTH sides of the spectrum….when it comes to educating minorities. When I have presented my credentials on my curriculum vitae to prospective employers, they are immediately questioned because many don’t BELIEVE that educated minorities EXIST!!

Andy

December 20th, 2012
9:10 am

I’m sorry but any Sociology 201 class tells you quality parents and quality parenting is what’s behind a well educated child.

Everything from the parents involvement in the child’s eduction, their own educational background, their credit score and their income play a predominant role in how their children will perform in school.

Private Citizen

December 20th, 2012
9:11 am

Andy, I hear you but I think it is practiced differently in different places. Someone is in the business of filling the jails / prisons. Remember, we’re #1 in amount of incarceration. You might be able to defend yourself in court. Many people can not. Some courts, when you speak up, they double the rate so to speak. I went to court over a speeding ticket for going 67mph on a Georgia interestate. When I questioned it, the judge was completely affronted, practically laughed at me. You ought to go sit in a court some time and see what they do to people. Ideally, you ought to go to one of these remote counties or municipalities and sit in their court and see what they’re up to. I think you’d be surprised. They dole that stuff out, it’s like visiting the cattle auction. Go sit in a rural county court and see what they’re up to. I think you’d be surprised. It is really passive, people just getting processed through and told their fate.

Pride and Joy

December 20th, 2012
9:11 am

And today a 16 year old boy shot and killed his friend over an argument involving a paint ball game.
A 16 year old cannot legally buy a guy. He had to get it from an adult, probably his own parents. There are NO responsible gun owners! If we want to derail the school to prison pipeline we’ve got to ban guns. In a normal world, without guns, these boys might have punched each other in the nose but in this sick gun culture, one murders the other. One is dead and the other will go to prison for the rest of his life to be paid for by my taxes and I resent it!
All gun owners should bear the cost of all gun violence, not law-abiding citizens like me.
If you want to own guns, then YOU pay for all the crime that guns cause and pay for the funerals too.

bootney farnsworth

December 20th, 2012
9:11 am

funny thing about prisons in today’s society:

for the vast, overwhelming, number of people in prison, they are there by choice. the choice they made was to break the law. and the same sort of mindset which leads you to disrupt education leads you to looking out of iron bars.

funny how that works.

bootney farnsworth

December 20th, 2012
9:14 am

@ HBD

horses**t. pure and utter horses**t.

Andy

December 20th, 2012
9:15 am

Educated blacks do exist, but the problem is they are rare all things considered, particularly black males.

Until the black community as a whole embraces a quality education for their children, this vicious cycle of 9 out of 10 black children eating off of foods stamps before the age of 18 and less than 60% graduating HS, will continue.

Another View

December 20th, 2012
9:16 am

Sometimes it is difficult to remind readers here that that the funding of education and school education is based in part on graduation rates. It is also hard to remind readers here that the governor has made it a priority to graduate more students; simply dumping students out of either the public or charter system does not meet the legislature’s or governor’s plan for an educated workforce. Moreover, the same funding system is now applied to universities in GA, so to say that we should simply dump students out because they may a) be suffering from some sort of abuse causing them to be unruly, b) suffering from poverty, divorce in the family, or some other aspect leading to unruly behavior, c) a mental disorder, d) poor parenting…should not be barriers to an education. Keeping students on site and temporarily separated from the larger student body during course work and class time to provide counseling, one-on-one discussions of behavior, and education is far more productive than the low-wage life and poverty than kicking them out will accomplish. Then again, the GOP will not pay for proper counseling and health care, and would rather pay for prisons.

Private Citizen

December 20th, 2012
9:16 am

HDB, the one thing I can tell you in back when Britannica was in print, under libraries it said that US black people were banned from public libraries up until 1962. I can see why some of the old people would be bitter. It still does not licence some of the territorial “rank” stuff I’ve seen in school management, but I can see where some of the older folk might be coming from with “seizing control.”

Private Citizen

December 20th, 2012
9:18 am

Chuck Shick

December 20th, 2012
9:18 am

The model used to be: get a good education, get a well paying job, buy a nice home in a good neighborhood (with good schools) and pass that ethic on to your children. The hope was that your children would repeat this behavior and the cycle would go on forever.

Throw this into the mix: Lazy students, bussed in from a poor neighborhood with an un-educated, one-parent environment who look and act really cool. Then have them listen to cool music and disrespect everything. Now your precios little one comes home and you don’t recognize them anymore.

That is the root cause of the problem

bootney farnsworth

December 20th, 2012
9:21 am

on alternate education:

that does a really good job of sorting out the trouble makers who can get back on track from the predators who can’t.

when you’re no longer the big fish, and there are almost no weaker kids to pick on, weaker teachers to intimidate, and you suddenly find you are not the apex of the bad ass food chain

it comes as quite a shock.

Private Citizen

December 20th, 2012
9:23 am

in the comments “Vice President Cheney who has stocks in all three of the biggest companies that have prisons for profit.” http://www.cnbc.com/id/44874053/For_Profit_Prisons_A_Barrier_to_Serious_Criminal_Justice_Reform

HDB

December 20th, 2012
9:24 am

bootney farnsworth

December 20th, 2012
9:14 am

It’s not as farfetched as you think……just because YOU haven’t experienced it doesn’t mean that others haven’t!!

Andy

December 20th, 2012
9:15 am
“Educated blacks do exist, but the problem is they are rare all things considered, particularly black males.”

Actually, we’re NOT as rare as is being led to be believed! In my strata, being educated is EXPECTED and DEMANDED. What has been broadcasted via media, in many cases, are the exceptions that have evolved into the norm!! There has to be a paradigm shift in how educating minorities is portrayed!! Note the difference in how the media portrayed minority education from the 50s — starting with Brown vs Board of Education…..and note the present presentation!!