Partners and allies in school discipline reform

Though far from an exhaustive list, the following organizations include some of the AFT’s key allies in school discipline reform. For more than a decade, these groups have worked to highlight discipline disparities, and there have been positive changes in school discipline as a result of collaboration with them. In addition, The Atlantic Philanthropies, whose work in this area ends in 2016, has been instrumental in seeding change.

The Advancement Project is a multiracial civil rights organization. Its “Ending the Schoolhouse to Jailhouse Track” program has played a pivotal role in changing policies and practices across legal and education communities.

The Alliance for Educational Justice is a national collective of approximately 30 intergenerational and youth organizing groups that work with policymakers to prepare all students for college, meaningful employment, and full participation in democracy. The alliance organizes for public schools where all young people are treated with dignity and respect, and are free from harmful student discipline policies that fuel the criminalization and incarceration of youth of color.

The Dignity in Schools Campaign challenges the systemic problem of “push-outs” in our nation’s schools and advocates for the human right of every child to a high-quality education. It unites parents, youth, educators, and advocates in a campaign to promote local and national alternatives to zero-tolerance policies, punitive punishments, and removal from school.

The NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund fights racial discrimination in public education, eliminates barriers to full political participation by all Americans in our nation’s democratic processes, champions economic equality, and confronts persistent racial inequalities in the criminal justice system.

The National Alliance of Black School Educators, a nonprofit organization comprised of more than 10,000 educators, administrators, and superintendents, is dedicated to improving the educational experiences and accomplishments of African American youth.

The National Opportunity to Learn Campaign unites a growing coalition of advocates and organizers from across the country working to ensure that all students have access to a high-quality public education.

In Baltimore, the Open Society Institute finds ways to keep children engaged and connected to school by supporting citywide reforms to lower suspension rates, increase attendance, and explore new programs for Baltimore’s high schools. The institute also focuses on ensuring that treatment for drug addiction is accessible, and it works to reduce the number of youth involved in the criminal and juvenile justice systems.

The Schott Foundation advocates for fully resourced, high-quality public education for all children. It collaborates with grass-roots organizations and philanthropic partners committed to equity and justice for all children in the United States.