Breaking the School-to-Prison Pipeline

By Vivett and John Dukes

SafeSpaceConvos is a Twitter chat led and hosted by teacher Vivett Dukes on alternating Mondays at 8:30pm ET. In a forum that encourages honest dialogue and connection, we come together to learn, grow, and co-construct solutions to pressing problems for students.

This #SafeSpaceConvos chat, co-hosted by Vivett’s husband John Dukes, focused on a discussion of the school-to-prison pipeline. Why might marginalized students end up in the criminal justice system, and what can educators do to disrupt the pipeline?


Chat Highlights

Q1: In what ways does the school environment impact the school-to-prison pipeline?


Q2: In relation to the school-to-prison pipeline, why is it important for black students to have black teachers?





Q3: How are African Americans represented in the school curriculum? Why is more representation of African American culture important as it relates to the school-to-prison pipeline?


Q4: In your experience, how are students in special education impacted by perceptions about this label?


Q5: How can teachers take preemptive measures to end the school-to-prison pipeline?


Resources Round-Up

Anspach, R. (2017, October 9). Disabled youth are more at risk of being incarcerated. Teen Vogue.

Downey, M. (2018, November 13). ‘You can’t be what you can’t see.’ Black teachers benefit black kids. Atlanta Journal Constitution.

Dukes, V. (2018, October 31). The hate I get about “The Hate U Give.” New York School Talk.

Harper, K. (2017, December 8). The school-to-prison pipeline: The intersections of students of color with disabilities. Testimony delivered before the United States Commission on Civil Rights.

Kamenetz, A. (2017, April 10). Having Just One Black Teacher Can Keep Black Kids In School. National Public Radio.

Mader, J. and Butrymowicz, S. (2014, October 26). Pipeline to prison: Special education too often leads to jail for thousands of American children. Hechinger Report.

Myers, W. D. (2004). Monster. Amistad.

Rosen, J. (2017, April 5). With just one black teacher, black students more likely to graduate. John Hopkins University.

Rosen, J. (2018, November 12). Black students who have one black teacher are more likely to go to college. Johns Hopkins University.


Be bold. Be authentic. Join #SafeSpaceConvos

You’re invited to join the next chat on Monday, December 3, 2018 at 8:30pm ET. You can also read through these archived chats for insights and resources from your peers.