Backsliding on School Discipline
How de Blasio's suspension reforms are producing classroom disorder
In February 2015, Mayor de Blasio announced major reforms to the New York City’s school discipline code. Motivated at least in part by the concern that minority students are suspended at a higher rate and that this may lead to negative long term outcomes, de Blasio aimed to significantly curtail suspensions. By the end of the 2015-16 school year, suspensions had dropped by 15,857 from the year before his reform was implemented.
The de Blasio administration declared victory, but United Federation for Teachers president Michael Mulgrew was less sanguine, saying “Success should not be measured by the number of suspensions, but by the number of schools with an improved school climate.”
Fortunately, the NYC School Survey, administered annually to students and teachers, gives us a snapshot into school climate, and changes from one year to another give us a sense of how schools are changing. Unfortunately....
This piece originally appeared in New York Daily News