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DeVos Department of Ed Cancels Obama-Era Guidance Aimed at Reducing Racial Disparities in School Discipline

on January 4, 2019

janresseger

Here is some news you may have missed. On Friday, December 21, as everybody took off for the holidays, the Education and Justice Departments rescinded Obama-era school discipline guidance designed to address vast racial disparities in school discipline practices.  Particularly important was the purpose of the guidance: reducing overuse of suspension and expulsion, encouraging schools to handle discipline policies in ways that keep students in school, and developing restorative discipline programs to create a safe school climate. Officials in the Trump administration, including Betsy DeVos and her Federal Commission on School Safety, continue to endorse punitive discipline.

The Washington Post‘s Laura Meckler describes the Obama-era guidance and the recent decision to cancel it: “The guidance, which was not binding, put school systems on notice that they could be violating federal civil rights law if students of color were disciplined at higher rates than white students.  It laid out scenarios…

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