Children at Risk will hold the fourth Racial Equity Rapid Roundtable, a monthly discussion of racial inequities experienced by Texas children and their families. Each month, speakers will discuss pervasive issues and trends impacting historically marginalized communities, such as how African American and Hispanic communities suffered higher rates of COVID-19 infections and COVID-19 related deaths causing community wide trauma, or how African American and Hispanic children have been the hardest hit by pandemic learning loss.
This month’s Racial Equity Rapid Roundtable will focus on school discipline disparities and how it negatively affects children of color, particularly Black children. School experts will discuss how implicit bias impacts Black children when it comes to school discipline in the classroom and what can be done to overcome these biases to ensure an equitable learning experience for Black students.
· In 2017-2018, Texas districts were still 2.5 times more likely to suspend Black students in early elementary grades compared to white students.
· A study of Texas discipline policies by the Council of State Governments Justice Center and Texas A&M University’s Public Policy Research Institute in 2011 found that for students in middle or high school, 23% of those suspended at least once ended up in contact with a juvenile probation officer, compared with just 2% of those not disciplined.
“Understanding and meeting the needs of students, without bias, are the most important tasks of educators and school administrators,” says Sharon Watkins Jones, director of the Texas Racial Equity Collaborative at Children at Risk. “Viewed through that lens, discipline should guide students toward success, not steer them toward failure.”
Children at Risk is a research and advocacy nonprofit leading the way in improving the quality of life for Texas’ children. Children at Risk considers the whole child by tracking issues in children’s health, safety, education, and economic security. Committed to action beyond the data, Children at Risk drives evidence-based change by speaking out on behalf of children. For more information, visit childrenatrisk.org, Facebook and Twitter.
The Texas Racial Equity Collaborative is a consortium of individuals representing various organizations working together to combat racial disparities in all sectors of Texas life. The group aims to raise awareness of these inequities and advocate for community and legislative solutions.