News and Events: September 2013

Justice Department Pushes New Thinking On Kids And Crime


In a recent interview with National Public Radio (NPR), Robert L. Listenbee, Administrator of the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, discussed priorities for the Office, which include supporting research and programs that promote the safety and wellbeing of the nation’s youth. He spoke about the importance of adopting a trauma-informed approach for treating children exposed to violence and a developmental approach to juvenile justice. He also discussed federal efforts to staunch the “school-to-prison pipeline.”

New Focus on School Climate in Massive Student Survey


The California Healthy Kids Survey – a massive survey of student behavior and a key resource for schools – has unveiled extensive revisions that put a stronger focus on students’ emotional health. The change reflects a growing interest among educators in school climate, a broad term that includes whether students and teachers feel supported and engaged, both socially and academically.

Survey Results Released on States’ School Disciplinary Data

The Council of State Governments Justice Center

As part of its School Discipline Consensus Project, the CSG Justice Center is releasing the results of a survey that examines what school discipline data state education agencies (SEAs) collect and make easily available to the public. In partnership with the UCLA Civil Rights Project’s Center for Civil Rights Remedies, the Justice Center reviewed the websites of each SEA, which typically provide extensive information about school and student performance. 

Youth more likely to be bullied at schools with anti-bullying programs, UT Arlington researcher finds

Medical News Today

Anti-bullying initiatives have become standard at schools across the country, but a new UT Arlington study finds that students attending those schools may be more likely to be a victim of bullying than children at schools without such programs. 

Study Bolsters Argument Linking Graduation Rates to Cutting Crime

Las Vegas Sun

Nevada could save $215 million annually in crime-fighting costs if it could raise its male high school graduation rate by 5 percentage points, according to a new report released today. The report reaffirms the concept of the “school-to-prison pipeline,” a cycle where disadvantaged students drop out of low-performing schools, turn to a life of crime and end up behind bars.

Beyond 'Zero Tolerance': A Pragmatic Approach to Teen Drug Education and School Discipline

Huffington Post

To ensure health and safety, high schools must have rules that prohibit the use of alcohol or other drugs on campus. Yet the 2011 California Student Survey found that in any 30-day period, almost 12 percent of students in both 9th and 11th grade admit to having used drugs at least once on campus -- that's one out of every eight students. Although there is variability in administrative responses, suspension or expulsion tends to be the norm.

'Growth Mindset' Gaining Traction as School Improvement Strategy

Education Week

Carol Dweck, her colleagues, and other researchers have found in dozens of studies that students with a growth mindset improve more in academics and other skills, and can even be less aggressive and more socially engaged.  Many states are now incorporating growth mindset and student-growth measures into accountability systems as they overhaul their curricula to match the Common Core State Standards.

Program to Address Disparities in School Discipline Policies that Fuel “School to Prison Pipeline” in Four U.S. Cities

Annenberg Institute for School Reform

Brown University’s Annenberg Institute for School Reform (AISR) announced today a $1 million, two-year grant from The Atlantic Philanthropies, a limited-life foundation, to engage community and school-district partners in four major U.S. cities with the goal of addressing school discipline practices and policies that contribute to a disproportionate number of low-income students of color leaving school and entering the criminal justice system – what is commonly called the “school-to-prison pipeline.” 

Students, Parents, Educators & Advocates Present a New Vision for School Safety in NYC Public Schools

New York Civil Liberties Union

The Student Safety Coalition, a diverse group of educators, parents, students, advocates and legal experts, today called on New York City’s next mayor to implement reforms to end overly aggressive policing in the city schools and restore authority over school discipline to professional educators.

Sharp Drop in Suspensions as Boston Schools Try ‘Restorative’ Approach

Boston Herald

State data show a staggering drop in drug- and violence-related suspensions in Boston schools since the district amended its discipline policies to allow “restorative justice” measures in lieu of suspensions, including written apologies, conferences between offenders and victims, and anger management courses.