October 20, 2021

Syltel Lovely

Singularly Lovely Education

Study: Police Referrals Disproportionately Affect Students With Disabilities

New Britain High School. Credit: Lisa Backus / CTNewsJunkie

In more than two dozen high schools throughout the state, students with disabilities made up nearly half of the referrals to police for in-school behavior during the 2017-18 school year according to federal data analyzed by the Center for Public Integrity.

The organization analyzed U.S. Department of Education data from all 50 states plus the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico and found that school policing disproportionately affects students with disabilities, Black children and, in some states, Latino children.

In Connecticut, at least one school – Bristol Eastern High School – showed all 28 referrals to a police officer that year were for students with a federally recognized disability, data showed.