Texas nonprofit, Children at Risk, highlights racial inequities in schools

The non-profit group Children at Risk held a roundtable discussion Thursday to break down ways to achieve racial equity in Texas schools. 

During their live panel, they put a strong focus on the issue of the school-to-prison pipeline. 

"Data shows disproportionate over-representation of students of color funneled into the juvenile justice system," said Vicky Sullivan with Texas Appleseed. 


Once a month the non-profit group shines a light on issues that students are facing in Texas schools. For September, they addressed issues of racial inequality like the criminalization of the behaviors of certain students over others. 

"Brown and Black students are disproportionately affected and referred to school police for criminal penalties in a higher frequency than their peers, further strengthening the school-to-prison pipeline," Sullivan said. 

Research shows that minority children in schools face harsher punishments and are punished more often than their white counterparts. 

Between 2017 and 2018 Texas school districts were 2.5-times more likely to suspend Black students in elementary school compared to White students.

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Black students were also 3-times more likely to face detention than Hispanic or Caucasian students. 

"It's a perception that the black boy or black girl is more knowledgeable than their age would suggest, they're more devious or conniving or violent and so, as a result, we may have a 5-year-old or a 6-year-old placed in handcuffs and taken to jail," said Camille Gibson, Dean with Prairie View A&M University. 

Children at Risk says they hold these panels to not only discuss the issues plaguing students but to also come up with solutions; with a goal of eventually eliminating inequities and creating a fair juvenile justice system. 

Children at Risk track issues in children's health, safety, education, and economic security. You can find more information here: facebook.com/childrenatrisk/videos/