National Week of Action on School Pushout

This year, the Dignity In Schools Campaign's National Week of Action on School Pushout is happening from Oct. 4 - Oct. 11, 2014! Learn more here: http://www.dignityinschools.org/our-work/week-of-action.

Download our 2014 Week of Action guide for GSAs!

For the 2014 Week of Action, GSA Network and Crossroads Collaborative released a series of research briefs and recommendations around LGBTQ youth and school pushout. Read the reports here! We also held an #LGBTpushout tweetchat on October 9th (catch up with the Storify here!).

Together, GSA Network and members of our National Association released a statement in support of restorative approaches to school discipline during Week of Action 2013. To advocate for restorative justice in your school, start a campaign by clicking here!

What is “School Pushout?"

School Pushout = school policies, practices and procedures that make it more likely for students to leave school instead of finish it. 

These include “zero tolerance”, harsh discipline, unsafe schools, and schools with lots of police but little money or resources.  These policies are much more likely to impact LGBTQ students, students of color, immigrant students, and students with disabilities.  Students who get pushed out are more likely to end up in jail or juvenile detention.

Read one GSA Network youth's experience with school pushout in The Advocate and listen to GSA Network youth talk about LGBTQ students and pushout in Tuesday's Dignity in Schools Campaign video:

Why is this important to LGBTQ youth?

Queer youth are more likely to be suspended and expelled, even for defending themselves or others from bullying like Cheyenne:

Cheyenne, a queer student and foster youth in CA, was suspended for "willful defiance" when she tried to stop the anti-gay bullying of another student. "As a foster child, if I get in trouble and am suspended, I can lose my ability to attend that school and I can also lose my foster home," said Cheyenne, who had to beg to be given an in-school suspension instead of being thrown out of school for two days.

  • According to the Journal of Pediatrics: “LGBT youth are up to three times more likely to experience criminal justice and school sanctions than straight students.”

     
  • And according to the Center for American Progress: “LGBTQ, and gender nonconforming youth are significantly over-represented in the juvenile justice system —approximately 300,000 LGBTQ youth are arrested and/or detained each year, of which more than 60 % are black or Latino. Though LGBTQ youth represent just 5% to 7% of the nation’s overall youth population, they compose 13% to 15% of those currently in the juvenile justice system.”

Week of Action 2013

Gay-Straight Alliance Network and members of our National Association participated in the Dignity in Schools Campaign's 2013 Week of Action on School Pushout, Sept. 28 - Oct. 5, 2013.

GSA networks in Missouri, Arkansas, California, Wisconsin, Georgia, Minnesota, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Vermont, and Colorado participate in rallies, gatherings, and marches for the 2013 Week of Action. Read about the Missouri event here and a student perspective here!

Students across the country participated in actions, protests and demonstrations to end this trend and demand that communities: Invest in Solutions, Not Suspensions!  Counselors, Not Cops!

GSAs shared the message: #GSAs4justice push back against #SchoolPushout!

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