Ann Arbor Schools Starting New Effort to Close Racial ‘Discipline Gap’

Danielle Arndt, Ann Arbor, December 8, 2011

Superintendent Patricia Green told the Ann Arbor school board that she’s taking new steps to close a so-called “discipline gap” and expects by March to outline a comprehensive district-wide plan to reach that goal.

The information was presented Wednesday at a meeting when the Board of Education heard new student suspension data from the 2010-2011 academic year that shows consistent discipline disparity among students of different races and income levels.

{snip}

In 2010-2011, nearly 1,200 students were suspended from the district’s middle and high schools. Of those students, 42.2 percent were black and 20.5 percent were classified as “other,” a group officials said included many Hispanics.

Those numbers compare to 33.9 percent for white students, creating a disparity since 8,627, or 52.3 percent, of the district’s 16,509 students last year were white. Black students made up 14.3 percent of the entire student body.

{snip}

Green said improving consistency in school-wide practices and policies while educating teachers and administrators on the roles that social and emotional needs can play in misbehavior will diminish the “discipline gap” at AAPS.

Closing the discipline gap also is critical to eliminating the district’s achievement gap, she said.

“One thing that caught my attention (when interviewing for the superintendent’s position) … was the achievement gap is being looked at on purely the curriculum side,” Green said.

“But the other components that are very significant are the emotional and social sides. … Social and emotional learning will enhance safe and caring classrooms.”

{snip}

“There also needs to be an increased awareness of the potential for bias when issuing referrals for discipline,” Green said.

{snip}

{snip} She [Trustee Simone Lightfoot] added while she is happy the administration is developing a plan to address the disproportionality of student suspensions at AAPS, she remains upset by the data.

“The numbers are egregious,” she said. “They are embarrassing and distressing to me. I kept turning the pages (of the report) and was mad and sad and all kinds of things. The numbers are horrible. … I can’t stress that enough.”

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  • Peejay in Frisco

    Closing the Discipline Gap will most likely mean harsher Discipline for White and Non Black kids who do petty, minor offenses. There is no other way it can be realistically narrowed.

  • Anonymous

    When are they going to start a program to close the basketball gap?

    We need more white guys on the NBA courts to raise the self esteem of young white children!

  • Question Diversity

    Ann Arbor: Left wing as can be. If they can’t make blacks and Hispanics behave, or at least misbehave no more often than whites, then nobody can. The only way to narrow this “gap” is to set the bar really high to punish blacks, pretty high to punish Hispanics, and very low to punish whites. This means that murder is the only offense for which a black can be suspended, while whites will be suspended for being 30 seconds late to class.

  • Anonymous

    If they fired all of the white teachers and hired all black, these numbers would not change.

  • Anonymous

    Ann Arbor is a marxist hub, like Boulder, Colorado, and Berkeley, California. As with the other two, it is an aggressive and hateful anti-male, anti-white, anti-heterosexual, and anti Bill of Rights center of collectivist aggression.

  • Hirsch

    Might I propose a solution? If we cannot convince the minority students to curtail their behavior, could we perhaps induce the white children to commit more outbursts, in order to mask the maladaptive behavior of their black brethren?

    I propose a system similar to Valentine’s Day. Once a week (rather than once a year) black students could hand the white student a card, detailing an antisocial act (“speak out in class”, “punch teacher” etc.) in order to bridge this “embarassing” “distressing gap.”

    Remember. It takes a village.

  • Anonymous

    The result will be punishment for white Christians who are not behaving badly. Ms. Green should be removed from office for practicing anti-white racism.

  • dd

    Doesn’t sound like too much of a stretch to assume the superintendent is declaring open season on whites. I can’t believe she’s going to punish more whites for non-existent infractions, rather she’s going to let more black misbehavior go unpunished.

  • Anonymous

    There are two options:

    1) blacks can behave better

    2) administrators can stop trying to discipline bad-behaving blacks

    In the wimpy world of 2011, it’s option (2).

  • Cogitator

    This nonsense comes up down here every so often, and I ask the school district for the stats, and every time males are disciplined way more than the females. There is never a suggestion of sexism (Or is that now genderism?) as there is the inference that the racial disparity in punishment is because of racism.

    Males and blacks are disciplined more because they commit more offenses. It is really that simple.

    So how is Ann Arbor going to solve the problem? Should they discipline whites that do not deserve to be disciplined, or not discipline blacks who should be?

    If people like this are running the schools, how much do you think the children can learn?

  • Conrad

    I have the solution. When the non-white students do something wrong beat the white kids.

  • E Pluribus Pluribus

    Closing the “discipline gap” is no more possible than closing the “achievement gap.” Hippocrates, in the August issue of American Renaissance explains why. Key excerpt:

    …the most common reason for school suspension and expulsion is conduct disorder (also termed behavior problems or “oppositional defiance disorder”), consisting of excessive aggressiveness, violence, disobedience, and criminal offenses such as drug dealing. Many studies have reported that racial differences in this kind of behavior are similar to those in suspensions and exclusions.

    For example, Drs. H. Feng & G. Cartledge reported that conduct disorder was .49 standard deviation units higher in blacks than in whites, while it was 1.12 lower in East Asians.

    Similar differences have been reported in Britain. Professor Michael Rutter and his colleagues reported that behavior problems assessed by teachers of 3- to 5-year-old boys and girls at inner-city schools in London showed that black boys had 3.9 times the scores of white boys, and black girls had 2.3 times the scores of white girls. Professor Barbara Tizard and her colleagues reported that the prevalence of conduct disorders was 3.9 times greater in black boys than in white boys, and 2.3 times greater in black girls than in white girls.

    The same race differences are also present in juvenile crime. In the 1960s, Dr. M. Gold reported that the ratio of blacks to whites for criminal convictions for boys was 8.1:1, while for girls the ratio was 14.1:1. Similar race differences are found in the case of adult crime. A 2005 report by the New Century Foundation found that blacks are seven times more likely to be incarcerated than whites, and that Hispanics are three times more likely. The report also found that for virtually all crimes, Asians are incarcerated at about one third the white rate . . .

    It will be noted that in all of these studies the black-white differences in the rates of conduct disorders and in criminal convictions are considerably greater than the differences in school expulsions and suspensions. This suggests that the [American Psychological Association] task force’s conclusion that teacher bias explains racial difference in expulsions and suspensions is unlikely to be correct. In fact, the greater race differences in the prevalence of conduct disorders and in criminal convictions than in school discipline suggests that far from disciplining blacks more harshly, school principals are reluctant to suspend and expel them for fear of being accused of racism, and are therefore more tolerant of anti-social behavior by blacks.

    Ever since the 1960s, when studies of race differences in school discipline became common, researchers have stressed the importance of keeping careful race statistics. This means school administrators know their patterns of discipline will be scrutinized, and that they will be criticized for any departure from proportionality.

    The most reasonable interpretation of all these studies is that there are racial differences in anti-social behavior, and these explain the differences in suspension and expulsion rates. The task force was composed of experienced social scientists who cannot have been unaware of the many studies of conduct disorders and crime. One can only conclude that they simply ignored them and blamed high rates of suspension and expulsion on the inadequacies of white teachers.

    * * *

    Finally, why are high rates of discipline for blacks, Hispanics, and Indians a problem but low rates of discipline for Asians are not? Are Asians beneficiaries of favorable but false “stereotypes,” or are they less disruptive? If they are less disruptive, then even the most doggedly egalitarian researchers must accept the possibility that there are race differences in behavior. No doubt this is why no one looks seriously into the question of Asians.

    * * *

    Whenever social science touches on the question of race differences, the temptation to twist the facts appears to be overwhelming . . . The question of race differences in discipline rates is no exception.

    SOURCE: The Galton Report: Race differences in school discipline.

    by Hippocrates, Vol. 22, No. 8 August 2011, American Renaissance

  • NBJ

    This woman is completely delusional. She pretty much expects these teachers to take on the role of mother, father, counselor and life coach to a bunch of kids acting like thugs who don’t give a hoot about education in the first place, at the expense of those who do. Not only has she given them the green light to continue with their bad behavior, but now those teachers had better walk on egg shells around them. Let’s see how frustrated she is in a few years when her brilliant plan is a total failure, and it will be.

  • Anonymous

    The discipline gap follows the well-worn pattern seen in incarceration and SAT scores.

  • Anonymous

    I work around leftist types like that. The only solutions, as #9 stated are as follows:

    1) Stop discipling the black kids, which many schools have begun to do. The teachers literally fear sending black kids to the office because the admins will then label the teacher as someone with no class control. The last school I worked in became a zoo because the admin made it so difficult to report the students no matter what they were doing short of fighting.

    2) They could just punish greater numbers of white students so that the ‘gap’ would be less – oh wait, not that many white students cause that kind of serious trouble, and the numbers of white students are dwindling in cities across the land. Liberals almost always send their kids to private schools.

  • John

    I looked up this lady on Google and its pretty obvious that she has an agenda. Shes more of a multicultural activist then a superintendent. One of her most coveted awards as a teacher was the “2011 Spirit of Unity Award from the North Hills Anti-Racism Coalition for her work in diversity”. This seems to be par for the course though with superintendents of school districts. Yet another reason to home school your children. God help us!!

  • Deadindenver

    If you have a White kid in the Ann Arbor school systems it’s time to move, as mayhem is about to happen. There are only two ways to close this gap, order principles, teachers and administrators to look the other way when witnessing black crime in the schools and or falsely accuse White children. And teachers watch your back as you too are about to become victims.

  • Anonymous

    From experience I can tell you this attempt will backfire and make the gap even worse. Whites will react to increased enforcement by improving their behavior while blacks will react to less enforcement by getting worse. Eventually Patricia Green will be shown a fool and the policy slowly abandonded without any fanfare. In the meantime it will have made her popular with the black community and the liberals.

  • Anonymous

    If these folks were mechanics instead of educators, you would be without a car for quite a while. They would be addressing issues on why the car won`t start instead of checking the battery first.

  • Anonymous

    Closing the “discipline gap” is no more possible than closing the “achievement gap.” Hippocrates, in the August issue of American Renaissance explains why. Key excerpt:

    …the most common reason for school suspension and expulsion is conduct disorder (also termed behavior problems or “oppositional defiance disorder”), consisting of excessive aggressiveness, violence, disobedience, and criminal offenses such as drug dealing. Many studies have reported that racial differences in this kind of behavior are similar to those in suspensions and exclusions.

    For example, Drs. H. Feng & G. Cartledge reported that conduct disorder was .49 standard deviation units higher in blacks than in whites, while it was 1.12 lower in East Asians.

    Similar differences have been reported in Britain. Professor Michael Rutter and his colleagues reported that behavior problems assessed by teachers of 3- to 5-year-old boys and girls at inner-city schools in London showed that black boys had 3.9 times the scores of white boys, and black girls had 2.3 times the scores of white girls. Professor Barbara Tizard and her colleagues reported that the prevalence of conduct disorders was 3.9 times greater in black boys than in white boys, and 2.3 times greater in black girls than in white girls.

    The same race differences are also present in juvenile crime. In the 1960s, Dr. M. Gold reported that the ratio of blacks to whites for criminal convictions for boys was 8.1:1, while for girls the ratio was 14.1:1. Similar race differences are found in the case of adult crime. A 2005 report by the New Century Foundation found that blacks are seven times more likely to be incarcerated than whites, and that Hispanics are three times more likely. The report also found that for virtually all crimes, Asians are incarcerated at about one third the white rate …

    It will be noted that in all of these studies the black-white differences in the rates of conduct disorders and in criminal convictions are considerably greater than the differences in school expulsions and suspensions. This suggests that the [American Psychological Association] task force’s conclusion that teacher bias explains racial difference in expulsions and suspensions is unlikely to be correct. In fact, the greater race differences in the prevalence of conduct disorders and in criminal convictions than in school discipline suggests that far from disciplining blacks more harshly, school principals are reluctant to suspend and expel them for fear of being accused of racism, and are therefore more tolerant of anti-social behavior by blacks.

    Ever since the 1960s, when studies of race differences in school discipline became common, researchers have stressed the importance of keeping careful race statistics. This means school administrators know their patterns of discipline will be scrutinized, and that they will be criticized for any departure from proportionality.

    The most reasonable interpretation of all these studies is that there are racial differences in anti-social behavior, and these explain the differences in suspension and expulsion rates. The task force was composed of experienced social scientists who cannot have been unaware of the many studies of conduct disorders and crime. One can only conclude that they simply ignored them and blamed high rates of suspension and expulsion on the inadequacies of white teachers.

    Finally, why are high rates of discipline for blacks, Hispanics, and Indians a problem but low rates of discipline for Asians are not? Are Asians beneficiaries of favorable but false “stereotypes,” or are they less disruptive? If they are less disruptive, then even the most doggedly egalitarian researchers must accept the possibility that there are race differences in behavior. No doubt this is why no one looks seriously into the question of Asians.

    Whenever social science touches on the question of race differences, the temptation to twist the facts appears to be overwhelming … The question of race differences in discipline rates is no exception.

  • Anonymous

    @ 9

    No they will focus in the most petty offenses that white children do to boost numbers. Parents will hear about “Johnny not waiting his tern, thus getting suspended,” and will complain.

  • Anonymous

    I have a white daughter attending Ann Arbor Pioneer HS, and it’s not all doom and gloom. She’s in Algebra AC and Chemistry AP and she’s well aware of the racial differences of the student body–both in the achievement and discipline gap.

    My daughter informs me that students talk privately among themselves about these differences, which makes me very proud that she can see the folly of Ann Arbor’s multicultural “Diversity Is Our Strength” fantasy.

    Keep putting the pressure on these Cultural Marxists and we will win!

  • Anonymous

    “I have the solution. When the non-white students do something wrong beat the white kids”.

    Hasn’t that been the solution for 60 years or more now? The late Sam Francis called it ‘Anarcho-tyranny’, I believe. The more depraved non-whites become the more the authorities are forced to crack down, on whites.

  • Bob

    I am a white middle-aged male teacher, and if there is one thing I have learned in this miserable business is that if you have blacks in your class, they better be your favorite students and they better consistently receive top grades, even if they behave badly and they are working 5 years below grade level. Identifying a black student as having poor behavior or academic deficiencies will result in the teacher being labeled as a “racist” which usually ends in non-renewal or termination.

  • Anonymous

    I can tell you that in our ‘diverse’ (100% black/latino) high school in the Bronx, we teachers DO look the other way when the students misbehave, which is about every fourth second, because too many teachers around here have been burned by our ‘social justice’ oriented administration.

    They are so concerned with coddling the out-of-control thugs and hoochies that when one of us does send a kid out, write them up or otherwise ask for help, WE GET GRILLED and made to feel the criminal. (Our classrooms are a border-line riot zone that can erupt any moment. The more thuggy ‘students’ routinely walk in and out of class at will.)

    Several of my colleagues have been forced out in the last two years because they dared to hold the ‘students’ to ‘white’ standards of decent classroom behavior. The principle actually used that phrase to scold one of the idealistic, young suburban teachers who made her peace corp journey into inner city schools.

    The rest of us, who don’t want to lose our jobs or have our careers ruined in this bad economic climate, now report next to nothing. Our principal has recently been touting our ‘increased’ school environment improvements, based on the drastic reduction in incidents being reported.

    I honestly don’t know if she realizes that the behavior has not changed, just a lack of willingness on the part of teachers to stick their necks on the block for the sake of classroom order. Better just to let them do their thing (theft, bullying, sexual harassment, shucking and jiving, cheating, etc) and then we can pretend the schools are ‘improving.’

  • Lee

    This lady came from North Allegheny school district in Pennsylvania, which is about 91% white. She is going into Ann Arbor Michigan, which is about 58% white, which usually means several schools predominately white with some predominately black. Anyone want to guess where the discipline problems arise?

    So, go ahead and try to limit the discipline referrals from the black schools. If they are not already out of control, they soon will be.

    This lady doesn’t have a clue what she is about to walk into….

  • Anonymous

    We need equality in America. To make this woman happy whites need to commit more crimes.

  • Duran Dahl

    For guidance, the commissars at U of M should take a page from their comrade’s book in Jolly Olde England. Use the “steel fist” treatment on the most minor of white offenders and let the dusky ones go scot-free. There you go…balance is achieved (at the expense of justice).

    No advance in wealth, no softening of manners, no reform or revolution has ever brought human equality a millimeter nearer.

    George Orwell

  • chuck

    Somehow the woman is determined to prove that black and white intellects are equal and its all in how the child is treated. My guess is this plan will fall on the backs of white students. If black and white intellect were equal then I am sure the achievement gap would be nil. Yet time and time and some well-intentioned do-gooder is going to change biology. A draught horse and a race horse are both of the equine variety…yet no amount of work will turn that draught horse into a winner on the track. Its all in the genes.

  • underdog

    “Ann Arbor is a marxist hub, like Boulder, Colorado, and Berkeley, California. As with the other two, it is an aggressive and hateful anti-male, anti-white, anti-heterosexual, and anti Bill of Rights center of collectivist aggression.” –anon #5

    Add the Chapel Hill-Carrboro City School System to the list of those who pretend the intractable can be ameliorated. But in this case you can also throw in the element of DeKalb County, GA school system, BRA style corruption and graft.

    http://goo.gl/da443

  • Webspin

    When considering these facts, one should remember these teachers and administrators of Ann Arbor are the Über Liberals. One need only listen to it’s public radio station to be immersed in story after story of black greatness and derision of all things white. These fruitcakes in what is the San Francisco of the Midwest, couldn’t connect the dots if you and I already drew the line. Any minority acting up in this district is given great discretion as these loopy liberals bask in blacks enriching the classroom with “rich culture”.

  • Tom S.

    I always read comments on here from White teachers stating how miserable they are at their schools that have a high percentage of blacks. I may be naive – but why are you staying in those schools, what keeps you from taking your talents to a majority White school or a private White school somewhere else? You might have to move, but wouldn’t it be worth it – I know it would for me. You don’t need to tell them the REAL reason you’re leaving ( if you do I imagine you’d be branded a “racisss” in your records and any school district would be afraid to hire you ) you could just say something like “as much as I enjoy it here, my grandparents in Whitesville Iowa aren’t doing very well and I need to be there for them.”

    Another thing, why are you wasting your talents trying to uplift a people that openly show contempt for White people and who will take what you teach them and use it against us in the future? A good example of that is when blacks go to White law schools and then go on to work for some “civil rights” organizations that are openly hostile to Whites. IMO if you’re teaching blacks anywhere from elementary school to college, you’re basically helping to make the rope thats going to hang you.

  • Anonymous

    I find this interesting.

    18 years after Roe V Wade the juvenile homicide rate began to drop dramatically year after year.

    Is there a connection? Did violent crime take a nosedive because there are fewer violent black due to abortion?

    Here’s a chart:

    http://goo.gl/14FtV

    http://goo.gl/W5OIz

  • john

    I for one salute this woman. Her behavioral and disciplinary model could be applied to the world at large, in which blacks are arrested and prosecuted at many times of level of other races, in which they comprise the majority of the prison populations, in which consistently score 15-20 points lower on IQ tests, in which Africa is still mired in the stick and mud age, and in which virtually no modern (or even ancient) inventions accrue to blacks.

    Who could have thought that it could have been as easy as arresting and prosecuting proportionally equal numbers of whites?

  • WyattWhite

    Seriously folks! Ann Arbor is a dead loss. All of Michigan’s disingenuous white liberals live there. But otherwise Michigan is a pretty cool state — so long as you avoid Flint, Saginaw, Detroit and Ann Arbor.

  • Anon

    “Closing the Discipline Gap will most likely mean harsher Discipline for White and Non Black kids who do petty, minor offenses. There is no other way it can be realistically narrowed. ”

    Not true, they can also look the other way on unruly minorities.

  • AvgDude

    The lunatics’ cure for this will assuredly be to let minorities behave badly without punishment while punishing whites and asians for minor infractions. That’s what has been going on in California schools for 40 years now.

  • Anonymous

    To poster 32, there are almost no teaching jobs left except for in the urban areas where teachers quit in droves every year. That’s why we stay. Even most suburban schools now are overrun with ‘diversity.’

  • jewamongyou

    “In 2010-2011, nearly 1,200 students were suspended from the district’s middle and high schools. Of those students, 42.2 percent were black and 20.5 percent were classified as “other,” a group officials said included many Hispanics.

    Those numbers compare to 33.9 percent for white students, creating a disparity since 8,627, or 52.3 percent, of the district’s 16,509 students last year were white. Black students made up 14.3 percent of the entire student body.”

    The numbers for white students being disciplined seem suspiciously high. The comments are saying, “teachers will start punishing white students for this and that…” and “teachers will ignore misbehavior from blacks…”. Folks, there is little doubt this has already been going on for quite some time. All they are saying here is that the double standard has not been extreme enough.

    http://www.jewamongyou.wordpress.com

  • sedonaman

    RACIAL DISPARITIES IN SCHOOL DISCIPLINE

    There are among us persons of so refined and delicate a nature that they cannot bear the guilt even of crimes they have not committed. Their shame is so great that they turn their considerable talents to serve the demagogues of bias. In this essay we analyze their efforts to document racial discrimination in school discipline, and humbly offer advice on how to improve their methods.

    http://www.lagriffedulion.f2s.com/discipline.htm

  • John Engelman

    The best way to close the discipline gap is to permanently expel the trouble makers.

  • Bon, Riding High on the Pineapple Express

    The best way to close the discipline gap is to permanently expel the trouble makers.

    John:

    This would narrow the achievement gap as well.

    BUT, racial bean counters watch our every move — if so much as one too many blacks is suspended or expelled, well, that’s an example of institutional White racism!! You can’t believe the outcry from the black community! The activists storm the school board to address “the problem” — they refuse to acknowledge their own children’s terrible behavior. They mostly blame teachers — as in “well, what did YOU do to set him off” or “he says you pick on him!!”

    It has been my overwhelming experience that behavioral standards have been completely compromised, completely relaxed to accommodate aberrant black behavior — some of THE most egregious crimes are laughed off as “boys will be boys!” or “you (as a White) don’t understand black behavior” or “this is normal teenage boy behavior” — yeah, like robbery, sexual assaults, vicious attacks from behind.

    I’ve heard every one of these excuses and LOTS MORE.

    These kids are RARELY suspended any longer, let alone expelled and White teachers are intimidated into compliance. I can’t explain to you the horrors I’ve seen, experienced and heard about, no one seems to believe what goes on in black schools.

    I would be happy to testify if it wouldn’t cost me my job, pension and reputation.

    Bon