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County of Santa Clara Office of the Public Defender to report on School Engagement and Suspension Alternative Project

Encouraging Findings to be Presented at East Side Union High School Meeting
​​WHAT:
The County of Santa Clara Office of the Public Defender will be presenting an update on the School Engagement and Suspension Alternatives Project (SESAP) at a meeting of the  East Side Union High School District Board of Trustees.  This presentation is a result of the partnership forged between ESUHSD, the County of Santa Clara Office of the Public Defender and the National Center of School Engagement. Four high schools in the East Side Union High School District were identified through this collaboration to help reduce the use of out-of-school suspensions, and offer alternatives to out-of-school suspensions.
Among other findings, this presentation will reveal that the four pilot schools participating in the School Engagement and Suspension Alternative Project saw an average 30 percent reduction in the number of students suspended and 47 percent reduction in suspension days compared to the 2011-2012 school year.  This meeting is open to the public.
 
WHO:
East Side Union High School District Board of Trustees
East Side Union High School District staff
Santa Clara County Office of the Public Defender staff
Community members interested in creating alternatives to out-of-school suspensions

WHEN:
Wednesday, June 27, 2013, 6:00 p.m.
 
WHERE:
East Side Union High School District Offices
830 North Capitol Avenue, San Jose, CA 95133
 
WHY:
Nationwide school discipline policies disproportionately affect African American and Latino boys and alienate the students who need most to stay in school.
According to UCLA’s The Civil Rights Project, more than 400,000 students were suspended in California, representing more than 750,000 total suspensions for School Year 2009-2010. More than 40 percent of suspensions in California are for “willful defiance,” defined as any behavior that disrupts class.
Students who are suspended or expelled are at a higher risk of repeating a grade, coming in contact with the juvenile justice system and dropping out of school.
Children with Juvenile Court involvement are as much as 4 times more likely to drop out of school.
 
Media Contact: Gwendolyn Mitchell/Marina Hinestrosa, Office of Public Affairs (408) 299-5119; Mariel Caballero, Probation Department (408) 278-5919; Adam Perez, Office of the Public Defender (408) 299-7795
Posted: June 21, 2013