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April 24, 2023

Introduction to the ABA's School-to-Prison Pipeline Legislative Toolkit

The school-to-prison pipeline – the various issues in our educational system that result in students leaving school and becoming involved in the criminal justice system – remains one of our nation’s most formidable challenges. The problem disproportionately affects students of color, students with disabilities, and students who identify as LGBTQ+. It generally arises from a series of policies and practices, namely implicit and explicit bias, that results in low expectations of minoritized communities, incorrect referral or categorization in special education, inability to properly identify and accommodate mental health concerns, overly harsh discipline resulting in long-term or permanent separation from school, and interaction with law enforcement for low-level or non-violent disciplinary infractions.