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October 05, 2014 Practice Points

Breaking Down Barriers for African American Girls

By Cathy Krebs

The National Women's Law Center and the NAACP Legal Defense & Educational Fund have released a report entitled Unlocking Opportunity for African American Girls: A Call to Action for Educational Equity. The report takes a comprehensive look at the barriers that African-American girls encounter in school—including overly punitive and disproportionate school disciplinary practices—and the educational and economic outcomes that result. It concludes with concrete recommendations to help advance African-American girls' educational opportunities and outcomes. This report is a result of a multi-year study and focuses on the barriers that limit the educational opportunities of many African-American girls as well as the impact of those barriers. The report outlines potential interventions to improve the lives of young African-American women and urges stakeholders, advocates, and community members to take action to improve this situation.

Cathy Krebs is the committee director of the ABA Section of Litigation's Children's Rights Committee in Washington, D.C.

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