Study: Larger school districts more strict

November 7, 2007

A study of Florida public school districts suggests the size of a district often determines whether students are punished under zero-tolerance policies.

A University of Florida researcher found larger school districts are more likely than smaller ones to have mandatory expulsion policies for students who take guns to schools and to impose mandatory suspensions for the possession of knives and drugs, as well as bullying.

"Children are increasingly being sent to judges and jails for offenses that traditionally were dealt with in the principal's office and after-school detentions," said lead investigator Brian Schoonover, who conducted the study for his doctoral dissertation. "Thirty years ago it would have been unusual to see a child handcuffed by a police officer. Today it is part of a growing trend that is commonly referred to as the 'schoolhouse-to-jailhouse track' or the 'school-to-prison pipeline.' "

Schoonover also found more than half of Florida's small districts -- 53 percent -- have no alternative educational setting for students who are expelled, compared with 3 percent of large districts.

Schoonover presented his findings in Washington during last month's National Conference for Safe Schools and Communities.

Copyright 2007 by United Press International

Explore further: Houston school closings disproportionately displaced poor and black students

Related Stories

Recommended for you

How the finch changes its tune

August 3, 2015

Like top musicians, songbirds train from a young age to weed out errors and trim variability from their songs, ultimately becoming consistent and reliable performers. But as with human musicians, even the best are not machines. ...

Cow embryos reveal new type of chromosome chimera

May 27, 2016

I've often wondered what happens between the time an egg is fertilized and the time the ball of cells that it becomes nestles into the uterine lining. It's a period that we know very little about, a black box of developmental ...

Shaving time to test antidotes for nerve agents

February 29, 2016

Imagine you wanted to know how much energy it took to bike up a mountain, but couldn't finish the ride to the peak yourself. So, to get the total energy required, you and a team of friends strap energy meters to your bikes ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.