Eliminate Suspensions and Expulsions of Young Children through training for child care staff and early childhood teachers
Dr. Barbarin has been involved in research on early childhood programs with specific emphasis on reductions in achievement gaps and socio-emotional adjustment of African-American boys. Direct observations of multiple preschool classrooms across the country have revealed a systemic pattern of disparate discipline which is adversely affected African-American boys and has often led to their exclusion from early childhood programming. Disparate discipline is evidence in the disproportionately high rates suspensions and expulsions of African-American boys from early childhood classrooms. Although this issue came to light as early as 2005 little progress has been made in moderating the adverse impact these have on African-American boys. Across the country State legislatures are considering an outright ban on suspensions and expulsions. Such legislation deserves support. However if a ban is to be an effective pulp policy it must be associated with efforts to support teachers and parents as boys gain in the ability to self regulate their behavior. The attached brief and letter provide a nuanced approach to addressing the problem of disparate discipline of African-American boys.