Middle schools are suspending black male students at nearly three times the rate of white male students, according to a report from the Southern Poverty Law Center.
For its report, the Montgomery, Ala., civil rights group draws on 2006 data—the most recent available—for 9,222 middle schools across the country. It found that 28.3 percent of black male students and 10 percent of white males had been suspended at least once during a school year. At 18 percent, the suspension rate for black females in middle schools was more than four times the rate of 4 percent for white females.
Suspensions were found to be particularly common in urban middle schools, the study says. In some of those districts, it says, a third or more of black students have been suspended at some time during a year of middle school.
A version of this article appeared in the September 22, 2010 edition of Education Week as Student Suspensions