Youth and Advocates Call for End to the Use of Student Suspensions for “Defying Authority”


As the administration considers changes to the city School Discipline Code, youth and advocates encourage ending the use of suspensions for infraction B21 “Defying Authority.”

In the 2013-2014 school year, there were 53,504 suspensions across New York City public schools, with infraction B21 or “defying authority” as the second most common reason for suspensions.

Research shows that suspensions for minor subjective infractions, such as B21, has a disparate impact on black, Latino, LGBTQ, and students with disabilities. Of 53,504 suspensions last year, black and Latino students made up 89% of all students suspended. Black students make up only 26% of the student population, but accounted for 53% of all suspensions. As of 2012, students with disabilities make up 12% of the student population, but accounted for 36% of all suspensions.

After eliminating suspensions for a similar infraction last year, Los Angeles Unified School District saw a sharp drop in suspensions and racial disparities in the use of suspensions.

Studies show that even one suspension can greatly increase a student’s chances of dropping out

WHAT: Students and Advocates to hold Press Conference calling for the Elimination of Suspensions for Infraction B21 “Defying Authority.”

WHEN: 10:30 a.m. Tuesday, November 11th

WHERE: Tweed Courthouse, 52 Chambers Street, New York, NY

WHO:        Letitia James, Public Advocate (Invited)

Markeys Gonzalez, Make the Road New York and the Urban Youth Collaborative

Alana Cooper, Youth Ministries for Peace and Justice and the Urban Youth Collaborative

Matthew Garcia, Sistas and Brothas United and the Urban Youth Collaborative

Zakiyah Ansari, Alliance for Quality Education

Manolova Yusuf, Desis Rising Up and Moving and the Dignity in Schools Campaign-New York

Tyler Brewster, Restorative Justice Coordinator at James Baldwin High School, Teachers Unite and the DSC-NY

Contact: Kesi Foster, Urban Youth Collaborative 646.404.4947