ON AVERAGE, BLACK STUDENTS IN AMERICAN SCHOOLS ARE
of the K-12 school-age population
of the students who received at least one out-of-school suspension
more likely to receive a school suspension than white girls
more likely to receive a school suspension than white boys
"Well-conceived and organized, as well as theoretically and empirically rich, this book holds the promise to impact practice and policy. Adding to the literature on school violence and the many ways it negatively impacts the educational experiences of Black students, it also draws from the ideas of antiblackness, which make it fresh, timely, and relevant to contemporary conversations."
Keffrelyn D. Brown University of Texas at Austin, coauthor of Black Intellectual Thought in Education: The Missing Traditions of Anna Julia Cooper, Carter G. Woodson, and Alain LeRoy Locke
"Bell’s Suspended is an innovative and fresh look at the deep policy connections between the carceral state and our public-school systems. The powerful narratives Bell shares from residents of the City of Detroit eloquently describe the lived experience of unequal treatment in academic environments. This book is a call to action and is a must-read!"
Aaron T. Kinzel
Executive Director of the Youth Justice Fund
Lecturer in Criminology and Criminal Justice at the University of Michigan-Dearborn
"The details of the participants' narratives are rich and compelling."
Bianca J. Baldridge
University of Wisconsin-Madison, author of Reclaiming Community: Race and the Uncertain Future of Youth Work
SUSPENDED: Punishment, Violence & The Failure of School Safety
The disturbing truth: school suspension does more than impede Black students’ academic achievement—it also impacts their parents’ employment and can violate state and federal laws.
Focusing on schools in inner-city and suburban Detroit, Bell draws on 160 in-depth interviews with Black high school students, their parents, and their teachers to illuminate the negative outcomes that are associated with out-of-school suspension. Bell also sheds light on the inherent shortcomings of school safety measures as he describes how schools fail to protect Black students, which leaves them vulnerable to bullying and victimization. The students he interviews offer detailed insight into how the lack of protection they received in school intensified their fear of being harmed and even motivated them to use violence to establish a reputation that discouraged attacks.
A thought-provoking and urgent work, Suspended calls for an inclusive national dialogue on school punishment and safety reform. It will leave readers engrossed in the students' and parents' tearful narratives as they share how school suspension harmed students' grades, disrupted parents' employment, violated state and federal laws, and motivated them to withdraw from punitive districts.
TO MY MAILING LIST
DR. CHARLES BELL
Dr. Charles Bell is an assistant professor in the Department of Criminal Justice Sciences at Illinois State University. He is a recipient of the American Society of Criminology Ruth D. Peterson Fellowship. His research focuses on understanding how Black students and parents perceive school discipline and its impact on academic achievement, social status, relationships with educators, parent employment, and perceptions of metal detectors, school guards, and law enforcement officers. Dr. Bell also examines educators' experiences with violence in school settings.