A 2015 analysis from the Pew Charitable Trusts reported that the rate of juvenile incarceration had declined by 53 percent over the course of 12 years. Despite this fact, numerous civil rights advocates have recently raised concerns about the school-to-prison pipeline.
In recent years, schools have adopted more stringent disciplinary measures, particularly out-of-school suspensions, which have more than doubled since the 1970s. Although the phenomenon has been justified due to the growing concerns about crime and violence occurring in schools, it has also increased the risk for those who have been suspended to end up in the juvenile justice system. A Texas study found that 23 percent of disciplined middle school and high school students ended up having contact with a juvenile probation officer. In many instances, the schools are responsible for this contact by having the student arrested at school.
These alarming facts have caused even the Obama administration to express concern. The government has since called for a change in the system and suggested that suspension only be used as a last resort.