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The Cleveland School District and AIR implemented a districtwide effort to improve safety, order, and conditions for learning, including social and emotional competence, connectedness to caring adults and peers, and the experience of emotional and physical safety. Findings included improved conditions for learning, better attendance, decreased disruptive behavior, and fewer suspensions.
Today, nearly 95,000 youth under the age of 21 are in custody in publicly and privately operated facilities in the U.S. Increasingly, youth are finding themselves involved in the juvenile justice system as a result of school-related conduct. Researchers suggest that this trend, known as the “school-to-prison pipeline,” is an unintended consequence of harsh school discipline policies such as “zero tolerance” and referring students to the police or courts for school code violations historically handled by schools.