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Obama Administration Discourages 'Zero-Tolerance' School Discipline07:59Download

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"Historic" is the word civil rights organization Advancement Project is using to describe the Obama administration's new guidelines, announced yesterday, to dial back so-called zero-tolerance policies.

They became popular in the '90s, as a way to quickly deal with discipline. But civil rights groups have long said they contribute to a "school-to-prison" pipeline, by disproportionately punishing black and Hispanic children for minor offenses.

Attorney general Eric Holder said of the policies, "Ordinary troublemaking can sometimes provoke responses that are overly severe, including out of school suspensions, expulsions and even referral to law enforcement."

Marsha Levick, deputy director and chief council of the Juvenile Law Center, which advocates against zero-tolerance policies, joins Here & Now's Robin Young to discuss the recommendations from the Obama administration, and whether they'll make a difference.

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  • Marsha Levick, deputy director and chief council of the Juvenile Law Center, which advocates against zero-tolerance policies.

This segment aired on January 9, 2014.

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