New dataset says almost a quarter of African Americans are suspended in high school

The Center for Civil Rights Remedies, part of The Civil Rights Project at UCLA, aggregated publicly-reported school disciplinary data into one spreadsheet and released it on September 12, 2013. They also created a new handy, dandy web tool to see suspension rates by district. The problem is that fewer than half of the states in the U.S. publicly report how many students are suspended annually. (Many will provide this information by request, but this data project swept up only the data that was readily available on the Internet). I wonder what the utility is of a national database when more than half the data is missing.

Using the web tool, I tried to look at the suspension rates in New York City. Not there. But I was able to compare the suspension rates in Dallas and Houston, Texas. I noticed that not only did both cities have much higher suspension rates than the national average, but that Dallas suspends more than 42 percent of its Black high school students. Houston suspends about 30 percent of it Black high school students. Across the U.S., according to this admittedly incomplete data set, about 24 percent of all African Americans are suspended in high school.

When I clicked on the big spreadsheet, there were hyperlinks to state data, but I could not immediately see suspension rates by state and compare which states had higher suspension rates than others.

POSTED BY Jill Barshay ON September 19, 2013

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