WHAT ARE WE REALLY TALKING ABOUT?
-Policies & Procedures
-Rules & Expectations
Can we discuss
WHAT IS DISCIPLINARY DISPROPORTIONALITY?
It is a term used to describe the inequitable
distribution of disciplinary actions in schools
(Wallace, Goodkind, Wallace, & Bachman, 2008).
Exclusionary disciplinary practicessuspensions, expulsions, or other actions that result
in the removal of the student from the educational
The inequity occurs on the basis of race.
HOW IS IT CALCULATED?
Risk Index is “the percentage of a given racial/ethnic group
that is in a specific category.”
Risk Ratio is a comparison of the “Risk Index for the target
racial/ethnic group and the risk index of all other groups.”
Risk Ratio presents a quantifiable number indicating the level
of over or under-representation of members of a certain
racial/ethnic group to be included in a particular category.
In the case of disciplinary disproportionality the category would
calculate the risk for certain racial/ethnic groups for receiving
suspensions, expulsions, or other exclusionary disciplinary
Risk Index = Number of Suspensions- received by Black Students
Total Number Enrolled- Students who are Black
Risk Ratio= Risk of Suspensions- for Black Students
Total Risk of Suspensions- for all other racial groups
(The Equity Project at Indiana University, 2011).
Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka, 347 U.S. 483 (1954)
“with all deliberate speed…”
FIRST DOCUMENTATION OF EVIDENCE
HEW/OCR, 1971: First collection of data regarding
expulsions by race
Black students 3X more likely to be expelled
HEW/OCR, 1973: First national survey to collect data
regarding suspensions by race
Black students 3X more likely to be suspended
Children’s Defense Fund, 1974: Children Out of School
Children’s Defense Fund, 1975: School Suspensions:
Are they helping children?
A THING OF THE PAST?
CIVIL RIGHTS DATA COLLECTION 2012
Disparate Discipline Rates SY 2009-2010 (CDRC, 2012)
RESEARCH- INFLUENTIAL FACTORS
Class and gender are factors that impact the rate of
disciplinary referral but do not fully account for
(Skiba, Michael, Nardo, & Peterson, 2002) (Skiba, Michael,
& Nardo, 2000; Skiba, Michael, Nardo, & Peterson, 2002;
Types of behaviors do not appear to be significantly
different- but interpretation of behaviors does
appear to be a factor that contributes to
(Bahr & Fuchs, 1991 in Noltemeir and McGlothlin)
GENDER AS A FACTOR
Race and Gender
Percentage of OSS received (CRDC, 2012)
For students who are Black, both males and females have higher rates of
1 in 5 males and 1 in 10 females receive an out-of-school suspension.
Black students appear to be referred to the office
for infractions that are both less serious and more
subjective in their interpretation than white
White students were significantly more likely than black
students to be referred to the office for
smoking, leaving without
permission, vandalism, and obscene language.
Black students were more likely to be referred for
disrespect, excessive noise, threats, and loitering.
(Skiba, Peterson, & Williams, 1997; Wu, Pink, Crain, &
Highest rates of disproportionality occur in the
categories of “disruptive” and “Other” (Rausch &
Misinterpretation of African American student
behaviors as inappropriate
overlapping speech as disrespect
play fighting as aggression
ritualized humor as insults
(Hanna, 1988 as cited in Monroe, 2005;
Weinstein, Curran, and Tomlinson-Clark, 2004 in
WHERE DOES IT HAPPEN?
Racial disparities in school suspension appear to
be greatly impacted by disproportionate rate of
office referral for African-American students.
(Skiba, Michael, Nardo, & Peterson, 2002)
TYPE OF SCHOOL
Out-of-school Suspension Incident Rates by Race and
Incident Rate Per 100 Students
(Rausch & Skiba, 2004)
“In districts that reported
expulsions under zerotolerance
policies, Hispanic and
students represent 45%
of the student body, but
56% of the students
expelled under such
policies” (CRDC, 2012).
Children’s Defense Fund, (1975). School Suspensions: Are they helping children?
A Report. p. 1-270. Washington Research Project, Inc.
Children’s Defense Fund (1974). Children Out of School in America.
Cambridge, MA: The Washington Research Project, Inc. Retrieved November
1, 2011 from:
Children’s Defense Fund, (2011). Portrait of Inequality 2011: Black Children in
America. Retrieved August 3, 2011 from: http://www.childrensdefense.org/childresearch-data-publications/data/portrait-of-inequality-2011.html.
Civil Rights Data Collection Report (2006). Projected Values for the Nation.
Retrieved April 2, 2011 from: http://ocrdata.ed.gov/.
Civil Rights Data Collection Report (2012). The Transformed Data Collection
(CRDC). Retrieved March 8, 2012 from:
Hinojosa, M. (2008). Black-White differences in school suspension: Effect of
student beliefs about teachers. Sociological Spectrum, 28, p. 175-193.
Losen, D. (2011). Discipline Policies, Successful Schools and Racial Justice.
Boulder, CO: National Education Policy Center. Retrieved March 8, 2012 from:
Mendez, L. (2003). Predictors of suspension and negative school
longitudinal investigation. New Directions for Youth
Development, 99, p. 17- 33.
Monroe, C. (2005). Why are “Bad Boys” always Black? Causes of
Disproportionality in School Discipline and Recommendations for
Change. The Clearing House, 79, 1.
Noltemeyer, A. & Mcloughlin, C. (2010). Changes in Exclusionary
Discipline Rates and Disciplinary Disproportionality Over Time.
International Journal of Special Education, (25) 1, p. 59-70.
Rausch, M. & Skiba, R. (2004). Disproportionality in school discipline
among minority students in Indiana: Description and Analysis. Children
Left Behind Policy Briefs Supplementary Analysis 2-A, Center for
Evaluation and Education Policy, July 2004. Retrieved March 13, 2012
Skiba, R., Peterson, R. & Williams, T. (1997). Office referrals and
suspension: Disciplinary intervention in middle schools. Education and
Treatment of Children, 20, 3, p. 295-315.
Skiba, R., Michael, R., Nardo, A., & Peterson, R., (2002). The color of
discipline: Sources of racial and gender disproportionality in school
punishment. The Urban Review, 34,4, 317-342.
Skiba, R., Horner, R. Chung, C., Rausch, M., May, S. & Tobin, T. (2011). Race is not
neutral: A national investigation of African American and Latino Disproportionality
in school discipline. School Psychology Review, 40, p. 85-107.
Skiba, R. J., Peterson, R. L., & Williams, T. (1997). Office referrals and suspension: Disciplinary
intervention in middle schools. Education and Treatment of Children, 20(3), 295-315.
Skiba, R., Poloni-Staudinger, L., Simmons, A, Feggins-Azziz, R., & Choong-Geun, C. (2005).
Unproven Links: Can poverty explain ethnic disproportionality in special education? The Journal
of Special Education, (39)3, p. 130-144.
Skiba, R. & Rausch, M. (2006). Zero Tolerance, Suspension, and Expulsion: Questions of
equity and effectiveness. In Everston, C. & Weinstein, C (Eds.) Handbook of Classroom
Management: Research, preactice, and contemporary issues. Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum
Skiba, R., Simmons, A., Ritter, S., Kohler, K., & Wu, T. (2003) The Psychology of
Disproportionality: Minority placement in context. Minority Voices, 6, p. 27-40.
The Equity Project (2012). Glossary of equity terms. Retrieved March 8, 2012 from:
Wallace, J., Goodkind, S., Wallace, C., & Bachman, J. (2008). Racial, Ethnic, and Gender
Differences in School Discipline among U.S. High School Students:
1991-2005. The Negro
Educational Review, 59, p. 47-62.
Wu, S., Pink, W., Crain, R., Moles, O., (1982). Student suspension: A critical reappraisal. The
Urban Review, 14, p. 245-303.
Elementary and Middle Schools Technical Assistance Center (EMSTAC)
Indiana Center for Evaluation and Education Policy: Indiana
NCCRESt Policy Brief
The Center for Comprehensive School Improvement
Race is Not Neutral
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