Tell Republicans in the Virginia General Assembly—End the School-to-Prison Pipeline!

Schools with few resources and overburdened staff are increasingly relying on draconian suspension policies to maintain discipline. And students are being arrested for nonviolent misbehavior, such as disrupting class or disobeying teachers. Shamefully, Virginia schools lead the nation in referrals to the police.

Aggressive discipline is criminalizing our students—especially students of color and those with disabilities. Last year alone, Virginia schools handed down nearly 30,000 out-of-school suspensions to children in preschool through fifth grade. African-American kids were nearly four times more likely to be suspended than their white classmates.

These suspensions don’t just hurt kids in the short term—it can set them on a dangerous path, increasing the rate of academic failure; drop outs; substance abuse; and court involvement.

Virginia must be better than this. Our schools should be a gateway to a brighter future, not a backdoor to the juvenile correctional center.

Tell Republicans in the General Assembly: restore sanity to school discipline and end the school-to-prison pipeline.
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