Published: Jan 29, 2013 07:00 PM
Modified: Jan 28, 2013 11:29 AM
Forum to examine school disciplineCARRBORO
Parents, students, elected officials, law enforcement, and other advocates will gather Saturday for a community forum to learn about school discipline laws and policies, racial and socioeconomic disparities, and the effect on students, families, and schools.
“Punishment and Policing in Our Schools: A Forum on Discipline and Student Success in Chapel Hill-Carrboro City Schools” will take place from 1 to 4 p.m. at the Carrboro Century Center, 100 N. Greensboro St. It is being organized by Chapel Hill-Carrboro Citizens Advocating for Racial Equity (CARE)
“Chapel Hill-Carrboro City Schools excel at preparing the majority of our students for college and beyond,” said Barbara Fedders, CHCCS parent and juvenile justice attorney, “but punitive and criminalized school discipline has led to racial and income disparities in suspension, and criminal referrals.” For example, Fedders says, though Black students made up only 11 percent of students in 2011, they accounted for 61 percent of the 427 short-term suspensions. “This creates for all students and teachers an environment of hostility rather than fulfilling education and growth.”
“When youth are pushed out of school or into the criminal system, they are less likely to obtain employment and more likely to suffer ongoing involvement with the criminal system,” said Orange-Chatham Public Defender James E. Williams Jr., who will speak at the forum.
Education and juvenile justice attorneys and advocates will address attendees in two panels following a keynote address by Orange County Commissioner Mark Dorosin. The event will conclude with a brainstorming session for participants to share their goals for inclusive, safe and caring schools in Chapel Hill and Carrboro.
Childcare and refreshments will be provided. This event is co-sponsored by Community Education Collaborative, Chapel Hill Town Council Justice in Action Committee, Hidden Voices, Organizing Against Racism Alliance, and the UNC Center for Civil Rights. County extends life of task forceHILLSBOROUGH
The Orange County Board of Commissioners has extended the Historic Rogers Road Neighborhood Task Force another six months.
In the meantime, the county will nail down construction of a new community center.
“I don’t think anyone could say seriously that the work is done. When there’s a community center being built and when people are connected to sewer and can flush their toilets, then the work is done,” Commissioner Mark Dorosin said Thursday night.
Financing for a $5.8 million sewer system is still on the table. The task force also will talk about the potential for development changing the neighborhood’s character and uses for the adjacent county-owned Greene Tract.
Commissioner Earl McKee said he would support the task force extension, despite his concerns about gentrification talks potentially restricting landowner rights. Staff writer Tammy GrubbAutism Society to hold conferenceCHARLOTTE
The Autism Society of North Carolina’s Annual Conference, Autism Grows Up, will take place Feb. 8-9 in Charlotte. This year, the conference will focus on planning for and proactively addressing the challenges of the inevitable and important transitions to adolescence and adulthood.
The event will be held at the Hilton University Place in Charlotte. Continuing Education Units will be awarded to professionals, and discounts are offered to groups of six or more.
Parents whose dream is for their child to be able to pursue higher education, obtain gainful employment, or live independently will learn about what they can do to reach these goals. Professionals will learn specific strategies to address transition issues and better support the growing children they serve.
On Feb. 8, Dr. Peter Gerhardt, chairman of the Scientific Council for the Organization for Autism Research, will present “Bridges to Adulthood: Planning for Lives of Competence and Inclusion.” This presentation will provide an overview of the issues related to adulthood on the autism spectrum including components of effective intervention, challenges to implementation, and potential solutions.
On Feb. 9, participants will learn from teaching and behavioral experts on best practices, gain insights about raising girls on the spectrum, and share the lighter side of autism through humor.
For more information or to register, go to autismsociety-nc.org
or call 800-442-2762.
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