Two school districts in Idaho, according to the American Civil Liberties Union of Idaho, have dress codes practices that discriminate against Latino students and lead to greater rates of disciplinary action.
By enacting dress code restrictions that specifically target Latino children, the Nampa and Caldwell school districts have violated kids’ civil rights to be free from discrimination based on race, national origin, and the color of their skin, the ACLU claimed in a study released last week.
Both school districts have dress codes that forbid pupils from donning items of clothing that are gang-related.
The ACLU discovered that the two districts forbade non-gang members from wearing Catholic rosaries, clothes that displayed Brown Pride, and cholo clothing, a look that some Latinos associate with cultural pride.
According to the ACLU’s research, these policies lead to disproportionate punishment of Latino kids who merely wear apparel that is associated with their faith, culture, or race.
Dress Codes In Idaho Schools To Be Reviewed By ACLU
The school districts assert that they consult with the local police regarding their dress standards and that the regulations are essential to safeguard pupils from gang affiliation.
Students of color experience a disproportionately high number of school suspensions and expulsions nationwide, according to Erica Rodarte, the ACLU legal fellow who authored the research.
According to the report, Latino kids in Nampa and Caldwell had in- and out-of-school suspensions at a higher rate than non-Latino pupils. Additionally, compared to white pupils, Latino children were expelled from school twice as often.
The ACLU suggested that the Nampa and Caldwell School Districts review its dress standards and discipline procedures to make sure that children of all racial, ethnic, and religious backgrounds are not singled out and accused of being gang members.
The group added that school districts should help children who are at risk of joining gangs or who are already members of gangs rather than excluding them.