Where Does It Start?

Black male students are suspended at the highest rate in the state in the Sacramento City Unified School District according to a new report. One in five Black male students have been suspended in the district, more than any other district in the state. A proud parent who has four students in the district and values education, states, “..My sons are going to college, it’s not an option.” Two of her children have received suspensions from the district; she describes as biased enforcement against the Black male student population. A new report backs up the district which disproportionately suspends Black male students more than other groups of classmates, The district suspended 887 Black male students in the most recent school year, topping districts in Los Angeles, Elk Grove, Fresno and Oakland. In Sacramento: 20 percent of the total male Black student population. District spokesman Alex Barrios: “What needs to happen in Sacramento City Unified School District is to have the ability to identify what a student needs.” But what about the district leading the state in those suspensions? “I mean really we want to go back to what we’re trying to do,” eventually calling the numbers unacceptable. The parent states, “We can’t keep letting them do our kids like this.” Our kids, matter.” Sacramento NAACP President Betty Williams says, “…an alarming report: the district leading the state in school suspensions. The NAACP wants to hold town hall meetings to show the results to the public. They say they hope to partner with the school district for some of those meetings.” What do I [Dr. Jeanette] say? “Students repeatedly suspended learn they can get sent home; go home and play games or whatever. Stated clearly, a student has learned through experience that if he/she wants a day off from school he/she can act up until he/she is sent home. This is what repetitive behavior teaches. Not only that, but it teaches that the student is not wanted and being ostracized is how your life is going to be. Being sent home only teaches banishment. Do we want our students to learn that? Well, if suspended all the time, that’s what they’re learning. What about the parent? What is the parent doing to maintain continuity and structure between the home and school? Does the parent keep a check on the child? Does the child even listen to the parent? Does the parent attend scheduled school conferences and follow up on the child’s progress? Is the parent cooperating with the school? Children need help from mothers and fathers and cooperation together. It cuts both ways. It’s a cooperative effort: family and school.” reference SACRAMENTO (Steve Large Anchor CBS13)

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