In the year of 2011-2012, Voyce Project, a youth-led organization focused on education and racial justice, reported there were more than 272,000 out of school suspensions, more than 2,400 expulsions and more than 10,000 arrests of Illinois students. In the article titled “Help Us Dismantle the School-to-Prison Pipeline” featured on the American Bar Association website reported, a public school student is suspended every second and a half and also found that for 95% of suspensions were for nonviolent and minor disruptions.
To address the school to prison pipeline, the bill SB100 was created to eliminate the amount of suspensions and expulsions for Illinois students. SB100 allows students to only be expelled or suspended after all other peaceful options have been explored and exhausted first. SB100 has been passed through both houses as well as the state Senate. Once the bill has been approved and signed by Governor Bruce Rauner, the bill’s requirements will take place by September 15, 2016. Real Chi Youth spoke will Sullivan High School principal and several community stakeholders, including students at Voyce to find out how the bill will be implemented.
By Grace Barry, Brey Mong-Delane, Kyle Gise and Gabby Jakar