Learning Curve: Making students feel like criminals

By Robert Nott
Santa Fe New Mexican

"Cops ain't supposed to be education," an inner-city student from New York City notes in Kathleen Nolan's book, Police in the Hallways: Discipline in an Urban High School (University of Minnesota Press).

The book stemmed out of Nolan's Ph.D. program in urban education, which entailed spending a year (2004-2005) in a Bronx high school she calls Urban Public High School (not its real name). By interviewing students, educators, security guards, and New York City Police Department officers who were assigned to regularly patrol the school, Nolan paints a picture of a school operating as if it were a prison, with students being penalized as if they were criminals for violating Code of Conduct policies.

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