Charter Schools Have Higher Suspension Rates

Charter schools’ discipline policies and high suspension rates lead to push-outs and poor outcomes for some students, a situation that is fueling the school-to-prison pipeline. 

Year after year, the statewide average for out-of-school suspensions is at about six percent. For example, at the Roxbury Prep Charter School, these numbers are significantly higher. In some years, out-of-school suspensions reached more than 60 percent.

Out-of-School Suspensions: Roxbury Prep Charter School and Mass. State Average

More evidence

 A report by the Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights and Economic Justice found that Massachusetts students of color and students with disabilities receive disproportionate discipline, especially in charter schools. According to the report, 72 percent of in-school and out-of-school suspensions and expulsions were for minor misbehavior, like dress code violations and disrespect.

A national report by the Center for Civil Rights Remedies at the UCLA Civil Rights Project finds many charter schools feeding school-to-prison pipeline. The report showed that this "first-ever analysis of school discipline records for the nation’s more than 5,250 charter schools shows a disturbing number are suspending big percentages of their black students and students with disabilities at highly disproportionate rates compared to white and non-disabled students."