Dr. Byron Price is both a scholar at an HBCU, as well as a warrior for social justice. He spends his days, nights and everything in between fighting to bring awareness on issues of importance, particularly as they affect the African American community.
One of the greatest threats to the survival of black children is the disturbing growth of private prisons and decisions by many schools to incarcerate kids as much as they work to educate them. States are defunding schools and putting the money into prisons, in what appears to be a deliberate strategy to leave a certain segment of the population uneducated with no options other than serving the profitability of modern prisons.
Billions of dollars are invested in building more of these prisons and like hotels, they are hungry for tenants. The tenant may be your child, but Dr. Price is working to stop the process from happening. Here is an interview Dr. Price did with the National Education Association:
By Cindy Long
There’s a disturbing trend taking place in our public schools, especially in high poverty neighborhoods – where hallways and grounds are patrolled by police and disciplinary problems are no longer handled by counseling and detention but by suspension and arrest. Known as the school-to-prison pipeline, the trend is turning our adolescent students into criminals at alarming rates.
To learn more about the school-to-prison pipeline,NEA Today spoke to author and scholar Byron E. Price, Ph.D., Dean of the School of Business and professor of public administration at Medgar Evers College of the City University of New York in Brooklyn, New York, and and co-editor of Prison Privatization: The Many Facets of a Controversial Industry.
Can you briefly define the school-to-prison pipeline and talk about the students impacted the most?
The school-to-prison pipeline phenomenon can be characterized as a deliberate strategy to push at-risk children out of our nation’s classrooms and into the carceral state. Research shows that minority students are most impacted by this practice.
What is the cost to our society when we have such a large school-to-prison pipeline?
When youth are disciplined under severe school disciplinary policies, they are less committed to school, do worse academically, and drop out. These negative school outcomes increase the risk of delinquent and criminal behavior over the short and long term, and as a result, have a negative impact on the unemployment rate and the economy.