The Learning Journey was an immersive, deeply engaging experience that allowed participants to see, first-hand, evidence-based policy and practice solutions to create positive, affirming, equitable educational environments for all students. Participants learned about the problem of punitive practices disproportionately affecting youth of color and those with disabilities and explored research-backed solutions and alternatives.
AYPF and the Learning Journey partners highlighted research that describes the disproportionality of school discipline, specifically that students of color and students with disabilities are more likely to be suspended or expelled than white and non-disabled students who participate in similar conduct. Participants also explored research regarding policies and practices that can address these disparities and improve school safety.
Further, participants met with and heard directly from young people and practitioners from Oakland Unified School District (OUSD) and Life Learning Academy (LLA), a public charter affiliated with the San Francisco Unified School District. OUSD and LLA shared about the policies and practices they are implementing to improve school climate and safety.
Attendees also participated in small group discussions to analyze what they could apply to their schools or work and how the federal government could support schools in these endeavors. There was ample time to network, engage in peer-to-peer learning, and explore and discuss policy strategies and solutions.
A more detailed summary of the event can be found here.