A panel of experts on race and education will discuss the problem of the “school-to-prison pipeline” during a free event Thursday evening at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis.
The school-to-prison pipeline refers to statistics that show students of color face disciplinary actions in school at much higher rates, which in turn tends to steer the students toward more serious problems outside school.
National statistics indicate 40 percent of students expelled annually are black; 70 percent of students arrested at school or referred to law enforcement are black or Latino; and black students are three-and-a-half times more likely to face suspension than white students and twice as likely to never graduate high school.
“A recent Annie E. Casey Foundation report found that black youth fare poorly in the state of Indiana – one of the worst states for them,” said Chalmer Thompson, associate dean for research and academic affairs and associate professor in counseling and counselor education at IUPUI. “This panel was convened to shed light on the issue to a wide audience.”
Panelists from Indiana and Illinois will bring their perspectives to finding a solution. The Indiana University School of Education also plans to focus on the topic and is planning an event for the fall.
“The School-to-Prison Pipeline: What It Is and What We Can Do to Disrupt It” begins at 6:30 p.m. in the IUPUI Campus Center, Room 450B. It is free and open to the public.
Look for a story about school disciplinary issues in the April 23 issue of Indiana Lawyer.