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This story is rage-inducing yet, it is the reality of many disabled girls of color in public schools. Given this is my specific focus of research, let’s examine why this is not an outlier, but an often repeated story for disabled girls of color #DisCrit #DisabilityJustice 1/
Let’s go through some trends & then into this story specifically. Note, most of this work comes straight from my book, The Pedagogy of Pathologization Dis/abled Girls of Color in the School-prison Nexus” which I will link when I have space. 2/ #DisCrit routledge.com/The-Pedagogy-o…
“Students in special education have been traditionally been imagined as a protected class in schools, but, in fact, have rarely been protected from the deleterious effects of disproportionate disciplinary actions, poor curriculum, and problematic pedagogy” (p. 39) 3/ #DisCrit
“Dis/abled children compromise 12 to 14 percent of the public school population (National Education Association, 2007); this number skyrockets from 33 to 40 percent in juvenile incarceration" (Quinn et al, 2005) (p. 10) 4/ #DisCrit routledge.com/The-Pedagogy-o…
“Graduation rates for dis/abled students…64.6 percent; dis/abled white students graduate at a rate of about 72 percent, Hispanics 58 percent, & Black students 55 percent…dis/abled students of color are underrepresented in academic success” (p. 40) 5/ #DisCrit
“Though there are benefits of special education such as individualized support & smaller classes, students of color with an ED label are more likely to be segregated & lose access to a number of resources” (p. 40) (quality instruction, curriculum, relationships) 6/ #DisCrit
“Said differently, dis/ability can advantage some, creating access to higher education for white students, while leaving students of color with the same dis/ability labels in more restrictive settings, with lower graduation rates, & with higher dropout rates" (p. 10) 7/ #DisCrit
For example “dis/abled Black students are four times more likely than dis/abled white students to be educated in a juvenile incarceration setting (Osher et al., 2002)” (p. 10) 8/ #DisCrit
“Additionally, which dis/ability label students of color are given matters” (p. 10) 9/ #DisCrit #DisabilityJustice routledge.com/The-Pedagogy-o…
“emotionally dis/abled white youth graduated at a rate of 48 percent...emotionally dis/abled Black youth graduated at a rate of only 27.5 percent; 66 percent of emotionally dis/abled Black youth received failing grades vs only 38 percent of white students;” (p. 40) 10/ #DisCrit
“58 percent of emotionally dis/abled Black youth dropped out of school, and 73 percent of all students with emotional disabilities who dropout are arrested within three to five years of leaving school” (Osher, Woodruff, & Sims, 2002) (p. 40) 11/ #DisCrit #DisabilityJustice
“Students of color with emotional dis/abilities are 19 percent of the population nationally, but comprise 50 percent of dis/abled students incarcerated (Losen, Hodson, Ee, & Martinez, 2015) (p. 10) 12/ #DisCrit #DisabilityJustice
“the point is that dis/abled students of color are often placed in classrooms focused on remedial curriculum and instruction, while emphasizing obedience through behavioral strategies” (p. 40) routledge.com/The-Pedagogy-o… 13/ #DisCrit #DisabilityJustice
“Gender is a particularly important construct to explore as it is associated with criminalization in complex ways that are not always apparent at first examination” (p. 10) routledge.com/The-Pedagogy-o… 14/ #DisCrit #DisabilityJustice
“The links between education and incarceration have been most focused on boys of color (Darensbourg, Perez, & Blake, 2010). However, girls of color are the fastest growing incarcerated population” (p. 10) 15/ #DisCrit #DisabilityJustice
“The focus on boys often ignores that girls of color are also deeply threatened by state violence, particularly perpetuated in schools (p. 10) routledge.com/The-Pedagogy-o… 16/ #DisCrit #DisabilityJustice
“though there is no proof that African American, Native American & Latinas commit more crimes, they are incarcerated at 2-3 times the rate of white girls (National Council on Crime & Delinquency, 2008)” (p. 10) routledge.com/The-Pedagogy-o… 17/ #DisCrit #DisabilityJustice
“Said differently, focusing on girls as an entire group makes white girls the default, which obfuscates the realities girls of color experience: disproportionate rates of arrests and incarceration.” (p. 10-11) 18/ #DisCrit #DisabilityJustice
“Because the intersectional experience is greater than the sum of racism and sexism, any analysis that does not take intersectionality into account cannot sufficiently address the particular manner in which” subordination occurs (Crenshaw, 1989, p. 140)” (p. 11) 19/ #DisCrit
“What is important to note is that students of color who exist at the intersections of multiple marginalized identities (e.g., race, gender, dis/ability) are extremely vulnerable to the school-prison nexus” (p. 11) routledge.com/The-Pedagogy-o… 20/ #DisCrit #DisabilityJustice
“More than one in five multiracial girls with disabilities…(21 percent) received one or more out-of-school suspensions, compared to one in twenty white girls with disabilities” (CRDC, 2016, p. 4)” (p. 11) 21/ #DisCrit #DisabilityJustice
NOTE: No statistics on disabled kids of color incarcerated because it isn't collected, but predict it's high. I am working on a national project trying to get this intersectional data from youth prisons. If anyone has funds to support, reach out. 22/ #DisCrit #DisabilityJustice
“If we think of oppressions as strands of a rope, when these oppressions are woven together, they are stronger and therefore more dangerous” (p. 11) routledge.com/The-Pedagogy-o… 22/ #DisCrit #DisabilityJustice
“Dis/ability is a targeted identity (similar to, but with different contours, as race, gender identity, sexual orientation, religion) that makes one vulnerable to police brutality, leaving school without a degree, and incarceration” (p. 41) 23/ #DisCrit #DisabilityJustice
“In other words, dis/ability is a social construction with material realities that are impacted by the social, cultural, and political contexts” (p. 41) 24/ #DisCrit #DisabilityJustice routledge.com/The-Pedagogy-o…
Hence, a disabled “student of color being physically assaulted by school personnel is not as rare as one may think. Stories abound of principals, teachers, and security officers becoming verbally threatening or physically aggressive” (p. 36) 25/ #DisCrit routledge.com/The-Pedagogy-o…
In another article of ours, we trace the ways disabled students of color have been harassed and attacked at school by school personnel: “Identifying Dysfunctional Education Ecologies: A
DisCrit Analysis of Bias in the Classroom" #DisCrit 26/ tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.10…
“Disabled Students of Color face increasing dangers of being targeted by outwardly bigoted teachers in the classroom. This was the case for Shaniaya Hunter, whose eye condition kept her out of class” (p. 8) 27/ #DisCrit #DisabilityJustice
Hunter “recorded her teacher telling her, ‘I have been around for 37 years and clearly, you are the dumbest girl that I have ever met…You know what your purpose going to be? To have sex and have children, because you ain’t gonna never be smart’” (p. 8). 28/ #DisCrit
“Another Black disabled student recorded his principal, Kevin Murray of Woodland Hills High School threatening him, “I don’t need the police man. I’ll knock your fucking teeth down your throat… 29/ #DisCrit #DisabilityJustice tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.10…
“I’m going to punch you in your face. You need to know that. Man to man bro. I don’t give a fuck if you’re 14-years-old or not. I will punch you in your face & when we go down to court, it’s your word versus mine & mine wins every time” (p. 8) 29/ #DisCrit tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.10…
Black disabled girls are susceptible to assault: “Consider the case of...assault at Spring Valley High School where Shakara Murphy was sitting quietly refusing to turn over her cell phone to Ben Fields, a white male police officer” (p. 7) 30/ #DisCrit tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.10…
“In the video while the young Black girl is seated, Fields seized her around the neck, pulled her desk over in the process, and dragged her across the floor” (p. 7) 31/ #AssaultatSpringValley #DisCrit #DisabilityJustice
And these interactions–which often result in disabled girls of color being charged with crimes in & out of school, & funneled into youth prisons–can turn deadly. The case that will always break my heart & fill me with rage is of #GynnyaMcMillen 32/ #DisCrit #DisabilityJustice
I write about #GynnyaMcMillen’s life and death in this article 33/ #DisCrit #DisabilityJustice journals.sagepub.com/doi/10.1177/10…
I also tweeted about #GynnyaMcMillen’s life and death, several times. This thread has the most details: 34/ #DisCrit #DisabilityJustice
these encounters where educators & police harass & assault disabled girls of color in school are not rare. They are common & at times, deadly. We have to look at ways racism, ableism, & sexism target disabled girls of color for labeling, surveillance & punishment. 35/ #DisCrit
Too intersectional? “some critique intersectionality by noting that if we slice up identity too many ways, we end up only addressing limited segments of the population…those claims deeply misunderstand intersectional analysis” (p. 139) 36/ #DisCrit #DisabilityJustice
Crenshaw (1989) noted if “efforts instead began with addressing the needs & problems of those who are most disadvantaged & with restructuring and remaking the world where necessary, then others who are singularly disadvantaged would also benefit” 37/ #DisCrit #DisabilityJustice
We must “recognize ways systemic inequities are perpetuated through racism & ableism & how they are further entrenched with other interlocking patterns of oppression…not to erase distinctions between us, but to build movements” (p. 141) 38/ #DisCrit
“Therefore, all notions of justice must include #DisabilityJustice” (p. 141). I also address this in this article on expansive notions of justice. 39/ #DisCrit tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.108…
Ok, so back to this assault of a disabled Black girl, where it is clear from police report (linked in @DrSamiSchalk’s original thread) that this adult was harassing this girl for a MINOR behavior (spraying perfume) and the adults escalated this by their own admission 40/ #DisCrit
The child is refusing to leave so they call school security officer. From the police report, the adults in the room-Pietz & Gue-both admit Mueller-Owens touched/pushed child without her consent. 41/DisCrit
Remember, Disabled Black elementary students were 14x more likely to be referred to law enforcement in MMSD. Situations like this make it clear why. Calling school security officers for minor behavioral infractions feeds school-prison nexus 42/ #DisCrit docs.google.com/document/d/1HY…
A teacher calling for behavioral support because a disabled Black child sprays perfume. Calling school security officer over a child swearing & refusing to leave. These adults escalated a minor issue. This is how educators over-rely on police in the name of safety. 43/ #DisCrit
From police report-Adult (Gue) stated it was “like a cat and mouse game” and that “Mueller-Owens was following this (disabled Black girl) around the room”. She goes on…Mueller- “Owens grabs both of them (Gue and student), pivots, and throws them onto the ground” 44/ #DisCrit
From police report: “I (police whot took statement) asked Gue who initiated the physical contact and she said Mueller-Owens. She told me there was no justification for Mueller-Owens to push (disabled Black girl) out of the classroom.” 45/ #DisCrit #DisabilityJustice
Mueller-Owens’ statement does not align with Gue’s “I (police who took statement) asked if Owens physically pushed back at all at this point and he told me no, he never pushed, punched or his he would never put hands on a child.” Gue says he pushed the child. 43/ #DisCrit
A student witness from police report: “Rob (Mueller-Owens) tried to push (disabled Black girl) out of the room...I (police) asked (student witness) how Rob was pushing (disabled Black girl) and she stated with both hands.” #DisCrit 44/
Owens said that (disabled Black girl) “was punching with such force that she was using her entire upper body to swing her fists and as she was punching, her head would swing left or right with her body” #DisCrit 45/
Another teacher witness stated, “she fully expected to see blood on Rob's face based on the severity of the attack on him by (disabled Black girl) and was surprised when she did not see blood on Rob's face.” #DisCrit 46/
These statements by adults are attempts to superhumanize-or view as possessing extraordinary amounts of strength (Waytz, Hoffman, & Trawalter, 2015)-an 11 year old. Black children are often subjected to this which is dehumanizing b/c they are not seen as victims #DisCrit 47/
Additionally, gender does not protect Black girls. "That is, beginning as early as 5 years of age, Black girls were more likely to be viewed as behaving and seeming older than their stated age” (Epstein, Blake, & Gonzalez, 2017, p. 8).” #DisCrit 48/
“In other words, Black girls had minimal access to innocence and were imagined as more liable for their behavior.” Also disability labels do not protect Disabled Black girls #DisCrit 49/ tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.10…
The district & police should hold educators accountable for assaulting a Black disabled girl. They should note that if any educator assaults a student, they will be held accountable. They should reassure parents that their children’s safety & wellbeing is central #DisCrit 50/
This is why what happens in schools and youth prisons, particularly for Black Disabled students and Disabled Students of Color more generally, needs to be framed as a #DisabilityJustice and #prisonabolition issue. #DisCrit 51/
Schools target multiply-marginalized youth of color for labeling, surveillance & punishment Disabled students of color lose access to education specifically for being at the intersections of racism & ableism, with other marginalizations impacting their experiences #DisCrit 52/
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