Policy Brief and Tool

"...and they cared": How to Create Better, Safer Learning Environments for Girls of Color

African American girl smiling with a backpack and classmates in the background.
Kayla Patrick, Adaku Onyeka-Crawford, and Nancy Duchesneau
August 2020 | The Education Trust
African American girl smiling with a backpack and classmates in the background.

This brief from the National Women’s Law Center and The Education Trust examines the ways in which school disciplinary policies codify discrimination against female students of color. The brief notes that school dress code violations often result in exclusionary punishments, such as sending the student home to change and placing the student in in-school suspension; these exclusionary punishments decrease the amount of time the student spends receiving classroom instruction, thus creating learning loss. The resource also details the social and emotional harm that female students of color experience when facing suspension or expulsion for nonviolent violations of the student code of conduct. Lastly, the report identifies biased policies as a systemic issue that requires a targeted shift in school climate and culture to reduce overall suspension and expulsion rates.

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Program and Curricular Materials
Program and Curricular Materials
Program and Curricular Materials