Texas Appleseed researches and reports on the impact of school discipline policies; ticketing, arrest and use of force in public schools; court involvement in student discipline; and the effectiveness of alternative education programs to help close pathways to dropout and incarceration.
- LETTER TO DOD: DISCONTINUE 1033 PROGRAM THAT MILITARIZES K-12 SCHOOL POLICE
Grenade launchers, M16 assault rifles, and other weapons intended for military combat are making their way onto K-12 campuses for use by school district police. Read our letter to the Department of Defense's Defense Logistics Agency, which we and more than 20 education and civil rights advocacy organizations from across the U.S. have signed onto, calling for a discontinuation of the program for K-12 school districts.
Read the letter to the DLA
Related Resources: Press Release
- LETTER TO GOVENOR PERRY: PLACE MORATORIUM ON TASERS, PEPPER SPRAY
On April 15, 2014, Texas Appleseed and coalition of advocacy organizations concerned with student safety again urged Governor Rick Perry to declare a moratorium on the use of Tasers and pepper spray on Texas students.
Read the Letter to Gov. Perry
Related Resources: Letter to Texas Commission on Law Enforcement
Texas Appleseed and Texas RioGrande Legal Aid, Inc. have released a new series of videos designed to help youth who are accused of school-based Class C misdemeanors defend themselves in court. The videos below, in English and Spanish, were produced with the generous financial support of the Texas Bar Foundation. Our joint press release has more information.
- NEW VIDEO SERIES AIDS TEXAS YOUTH CHARGED WITH CLASS C MISDEMEANORS
Youth In Court: Defending Yourself Against a Class C Misdemeanor Charge
Jóvenes en Corte: Defendiéndote Contra un Cargo Menor Clase C
Click below to watch our offense-specific videos:
Defending Against a Failure to Attend School Charge
Defendiéndote Contra un Cargo de Absentismo Escolar
Defending Against a Disorderly Conduct Charge
Defendiéndote Contra un Cargo de Conducta Desordenada
Defending Against an Assault Charge
Defendiéndote Contra un Cargo de Asalto Menor Clase C
- NEW STUDENT AND PARENT GUIDES FROM TEXAS RIOGRANDE LEGAL AID.
Texas RioGrade Legal Aid (TRLA) has published an updated series of guides for students and parent of students charged with school-related misdemeanors and forced to defend themselves in Justice of the Peace (JP) or municipal court. Download the guides here.
Texas RioGrande Legal Aid (TRLA) ha publicado una serie de guías para estudiantes y los padres de estudiantes que han sido acusados de delitos menores escolares y que tendrán que defenderse a sí mismos en los tribunales JP o municipal. Puede descargar las guías aquí.
Defending Against an Assault Charge / Defensa Contra un Cargo de Agresión
Defending Against a Disorderly Conduct Charge / Defensa Contra un Cargo de Conducta Desordenada
Defending Against a Failure to Attend School Charge / Defensa Contra un Cargo de Ausencia Escolar
Children With Disabilities / Niños con Discapacidades
JOINT LETTER TO TCLE 12.4.2013 PRESS RELEASE 12.5.2013
- APPLESEED, OTHER JUSTICE GROUPS SAY IT'S TIME: BAN USING TASERS, PEPPER SPRAY ON SCHOOL CHILDREN. Only weeks after a student suffered traumatic brain injury as a result of being tased at school, Texas Appleseed is urging the Texas Commission on Law Enforcement to adopt a statewide policy that bans the use of pepper spray, stun guns, and Tasers on students by school police officers attempting to restore order in school. We are part of a coalition of seven civil rights and social justice groups seeking this change to protect children.
DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION, OFFICE OF CIVIL RIGHTS, CONFIRMS IT WILL INVESTIGATE TEXAS APPLESEED COMPLAINT ON IMPACT OF TICKETING IN BRYAN ISD ON AFRICAN- AMERICAN STUDENTS.
Texas Appleseed and the Brazos County chapter of the NAACP filed a Complaint with the Office of Civil Rights, U.S. Department of Education, challenging the disproportionate Class C misdemeanor ticketing of African American students in Bryan ISD for Disorderly Conduct-Language and Disruption of Class--minor misbehavior that used to be handled by a trip to the principal's office.
Bryan ISD OCR Complaint 2.20.2013 Summary of Bryan OCR Complaint
Press Release, Texas Appleseed 2.20.2013
CIVIL RIGHTS FILING ACCUSES DALLAS COUNTY SCHOOLS, TRUANCY COURTS OF STUDENTS RIGHTS VIOLATIONS. Texas Appleseed, Disability Rights Texas, and the National Center for Youth Law have added additional complainants to its June 12, 2013, filing with the U.S. Department of Justice. The three law centers allege that Dallas County's four school districts and truancy courts are violating the constitutional and civil rights of students prosecuted for Failure to Attend School.
Complaint Filed 6.13.2013 Summary of Complaint Press Release
Letter to Department of Justice Adding Complainants 7.1.2013
Dallas Truancy Court Data
Appendix E- Dallas Court Outcomes
Truancy White Paper Texas Appleseed, 3.2013
Texas Appleseed Media Report on Truancy Coverage
Texas Students Sue Over Truancy Punishment The Wall Street Journal, 6.13.2013
Truancy Courts' Tracking Assailed Dallas Morning News, 6.12.2013
Texas is one of only two states that prosecutes truancy in adult court. Texas prosecuted about 113,000 truancy cases against Texas children ages 12-17 in FY 2012—more than double the number of truancy cases prosecuted in all other states combined. Last year alone, Dallas County truancy courts prosecuted over 36,000 truancy cases—more than any other Texas county--and in FY 2012, collected $2.9 million in fines from students and parents.
Fact Sheet: School-to-Prison Pipeline in Texas
School Ticketing Implementation Guide
Guide to Prosecution for School Truancy in Texas
Student Guide to Impact on School Discipline (SB 393 & 1114, 2013)
Complaint filed with U.S Department of Justice by Texas Appleseed, Disability Rights Texas, National Center for Youth Law 6.13.2013
Summary - Complaint filed with DOJ 6.13.2013
Truancy Research 3.2013
Breaking Rules, Breaking Budgets: Cost of Explusionary Discipline in 11 Texas School Districts 10.29.2012
Latest Ticketing and Arrest Data for 40+ Texas School Districts 4.2013
Texas Appleseed Testimony 12.11.2012 Submitted in writing for the nation's first Congressional hearing on the school-to-prison pipeline (U.S. Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on the Constitution, Civil Rights and Human Rights)
INTERNATIONAL MEDIA COVERAGE
Texas Appleseed's work has attracted media coverage from outlets in Great Britain, Ireland, Australia, and France.
The U.S. Schools with Their Own Police, The Guardian, 1.9.2012 References Texas Appleseed's school-to-prison pipeline work and our 2011 report on Class C misdemeanor ticketing and arrest at schools in Texas for minor misbehavior.
Ticketing, Arrest & Use of Force in Schools and Executive Summary and Press Release
NATIONAL MEDIA COVERAGE
Texas Appleseed's work is featured at these links on National Public Radio, the Washington Post, and The New York Times ... and here in Texas, in the The Texas Tribune and Houston Chronicle.
One Way to Guarantee More Trouble, The New York Times editorial, 7.30.2011
Texas Schools Study - Most Kids Have Been Suspended, National Public Radio, 7.19.2011
Half of Texas Students Have Been Suspended, Study Finds, Education Week, 7.19.2011
ON VIDEO ...
Harsh Punishment for Misbehavior in Texas Schools
Misbehavior that in another era might have resulted in a trip to the principal's office now leads to fines, citations, even criminal records in some cases in Texas.
Fox & Friends (national broadcast)
Video: Guest views on Texas Appleseed report on student ticketing, 1.14.2011
Video: Appleseed Deputy Director interviewed, 1.29.2011
Video: Student Says She was Ticketed for Wearing Too Much Perfume
Video: Report Questions Tickets Given to Students, 1.12.2011