School Discipline Called Into Question

School discipline recently grabbed national attention when a cell phone video surfaced showing a white male police officer shove a female student of color, flipping her over in her desk, then dragging the student across the classroom floor with considerable force.

“There is no justification whatsoever for treating a child like this,” said Victoria Middleton, Executive director for the South Carolina branch of the American Civil Liberties Union. “Regardless of the reason for the officer’s actions, such egregious use of force against young people who are sitting in their classrooms is outrageous. School should be a place to learn and grow, not a place to be brutalized.”

This issue was taken up multiple times at the 2015 Equity Summit in Los Angeles, leading to discussion on how effective punishment is in schools. Alan Obregon and Phuong Pham attended the summit with Mid City Community Advocacy Network’s Peace Promotion Momentum Team. The two students attend Crawford Law Academy and are active advocates for Restorative Justice: an alternative to the current school justice system.

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Community Demands Restorative Justice in Schools

Students, teachers, staff, administrators, and concerned community members want to help speed up the slow implementation of Restorative Justice in San Diego schools. Members of Mid-City CAN's Peace Promotion Momentum Team (PPMT) made their case in front of the San Diego Unified School District (SDUSD) School Board meeting on May 24.

Team members requested that the community be allowed to view a draft of the Restorative Practices Implementation Plan the school district is currently writing. They want to be able to provide community feedback and input.

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