Blog of Rights

Stephanie
Patterson

Speaking Up About School Discipline in Delaware

By Stephanie Patterson, ACLU of Delaware at 4:41pm
The case of Zachery Christie, the 6-year-old from Delaware who was suspended from school for bringing a camping utensil to lunch, is now a familiar story. Initially, his punishment was 45 days in an alternative school. Fortunately for Christie, the school board amended its policies to readmit him following a brief suspension. Many students are not as fortunate, and disciplinary infractions can result in removal from school, or even criminal charges. In too many cases, this marks the student's entry into the school-to-prison pipeline, which are the policies and practices through which many school children, disproportionately represented by minority students and students with special needs, are pushed out of school and into the juvenile and criminal justice system.
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