White Students Get Experienced Teachers, While Black Students Get Police In School
“I don’t think there’s any way you could look at this data and not come away with a tremendous sense of urgency.”
In America, the most rigorous classes, experienced teachers and moderate discipline practices tend to be reserved for white students, according to new survey results from the U.S. Department of Education.
The Department of Education’s Civil Rights Data Collection surveys 99 percent of the nation’s public schools on issues related to the level of opportunity provided to their students. The survey, which is conducted every other school year, collects data about students’ access to classes, teachers and school discipline trends. The latest survey, which has data from the 2013-2014 school year, also collected data on issues like student absenteeism and the quality of education provided in juvenile justice facilities.
The Department of Education provided reporters with top-level national indicators and will release full data that informed its conclusions later in the week.
The survey results paint a picture of vast educational inequalities based on students’ skin color and disability status, with only a few bright spots. Specifically, while student suspension rates appear to have dropped 20 percent since the last time data was collected in 2011-2012, stark racial inequities persist in terms of which students receive this punishment.
“In general, the data shows students of color, students whose first language is not English, and students with disabilities are, according to a number of indicators, not getting the same the opportunities to learn as their classmates who are white, first language is English or who do not have disabilities,” U.S. Secretary of Education John King Jr. said on a call with reporters Monday.
King is hopeful that the nation’s new federal education law, The Every Student Succeeds Act, will serve to rectify some of these inequities.
“These statistics are not just numbers. They represent the educational experiences of real students, whose lives are affected in profound ways by what goes on in their schools,” said King.
Even In Preschool, Black Students Are Punished More Harshly Than White Students
White Students Get Experienced Teachers, While Black Students Get Police In School:
As early as preschool, students of color are subjected to harsher punishments than their white peers. The 2011-2012 Civil Rights Data Collection first reported this imbalance — finding that even though black children accounted for only 18 percent of preschool students, they represented 48 percent of children receiving one or more out-of-school suspensions. Several years later, little has changed. In 2013-2014, black children accounted for 19 percent of preschool students, but 47 percent of students receiving one or more suspensions — making them 3.6 times more likely to receive a suspension than their white peers.
For K-12 students, this trend continues. Even though the 2.8 million K-12 students who received one or more out-of-school suspensions in 2013-2014 represents a 20 percent decrease from 2011-2013 — a decline the Education Department is highlighting — the racial gaps in who gets suspended persist. Black students are 3.8 times more likely to face suspension than white students. Also more likely to receive a suspension are Latino, American Indian and Alaskan Native, Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander students; mixed-race males; and students with disabilities.
As far as female students go, though, only black girls are being disproportionately