Trump Officials Plan to Rescind Obama-Era School Discipline Policies
This is a typical act of ignorant, bigoted people. The inability to accept responsibility for their own deranged children and turn to punish innocent people. This is the story of an America that will reap this evil by the increased killing of their own children.
WASHINGTON — The Trump administration is planning to roll back Obama-era policies aimed at ensuring that minority children are not unfairly disciplined, arguing that the efforts have eased up on punishment and contributed to rising violence in the nation’s schools, according to documents obtained by The New York Times.
The decision culminates a nearly yearlong effort begun by the Trump administration after the massacre at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla. The deaths of 17 students and staff members on Feb. 14 prompted lawmakers in both parties to demand tougher gun laws, but after a brief flirtation with gun control, President Trump abandoned that focus and instead empowered a school safety commission, led by Education Secretary Betsy DeVos.
Almost immediately, the commission turned away from guns and instead scrutinized the Obama administration’s school discipline policies, though none of the most high-profile school shootings were perpetrated by black students. The commission’s focus was part of a broader effort to reject the previous administration’s race-conscious education efforts, which have included siding with Asian students suing Harvard to end affirmative action and delaying an Obama-era rule to prevent disproportionate numbers of minority children from being funneled into special education classes.
The documents obtained by The Times — a draft letter and a draft chapter of the safety commission’s research — focus significantly on race and promote the idea that the federal crackdown on potentially discriminatory practices has made schools more dangerous.
“The federal government’s paramount obligation is to guarantee student safety, including when it is acting to ensure that educational programs and policies are administered in a racially neutral fashion,” the commission wrote. “However, where well-meaning but flawed policies endanger student safety, they must be changed.”
Disability and civil rights advocates will almost certainly denounce the latest policy maneuver. The Obama administration policies were adopted after strong evidence emerged that minority students were receiving more suspensions and tougher punishments than white students for the same or lesser offenses, while disabled students were too quickly being shunted into remedial or special-education programs.
“Safety is a red herring intended to raise fears about our own children,” said Eve Hill, a disability rights lawyer at Brown, Goldstein & Levy who worked on the Obama-era discipline guidance while a lawyer in the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division.
The Education and Justice Departments plan to send a joint letter this week announcing the rescinding of policy statements dating to 2014, according to a draft letter signed by Kenneth L. Marcus, the Education Department’s head of civil rights, and Eric S. Dreiband, assistant attorney general for civil rights.
The 2014 Obama policy advised schools on how to dole out discipline in a nondiscriminatory manner and examine education data to look for racial disparities that could flag a federal civil rights violation. Though the guidance is nonbinding, critics have argued that the edict pressured districts to keep suspensions low at the expense of student safety.