Thursday, June 5, 2014

DOE notes high pre-k suspensions

Posted By on Thu, Jun 5, 2014 at 10:59 AM

This is a corrected version of this blog; June 6, 2014 at 12:20 p.m.

The Rochester school district has been re-evaluating its approach to suspensions and working on a new code of conduct policy.

Thousands of city students are suspended yearly and there is a tendency to think that they are mostly older students. The Rochester City School District does not suspend pre-k students, according to a district spokesperson, but that is not the case elsewhere. 

A brief article in the June issue of American School Board Journal says that nearly 5,000 pre-k students in the US were suspended during the 2011-2012 school year. The data comes from a report issued by the US Department of Education. Generally these students are 3, 4, and 5 years old. 

Similar to national data on suspensions, black children are disproportionately represented, even though they comprise about 18 percent of students enrolled pre-k programs. Most of the suspensions, according to the DOE, are the result of zero tolerance standards in public schools.

The irony is that pre k and preschool programs are intended to give students a head start. 

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