Skip Navigation
small NCES header image
Status and Trends in the Education of American Indians and Alaska Natives: 2008

NCES 2008-084
September 2008

Suspension and Expulsion


In 2004, American Indian/Alaska Native public school students in grades kindergarten through 12 had lower suspension and expulsion rates than Black students, but higher suspension and expulsion rates than students of all other racial/ethnic groups.

Figure 3.2. Percentage of public school students in kindergarten through 12th grade who were suspended, by sex and race/ethnicity: 2004
Percentage of public school students in kindergarten through 12th grade who were
suspended, by sex and race/ethnicity: 2004
NOTE: Race categories exclude persons of Hispanic ethnicity.
SOURCE: U.S. Department of Education, Office for Civil Rights (OCR), Civil Rights Data Collection, 2004, retrieved from http://vistademo.beyond2020.com/ocr2004rv30/ on May 17, 2007.

Prior research has confirmed the common perception that students who have been suspended from school are at higher risk for other poor school outcomes, including dropping out of school (Wehlage et al. 1989). Students who are being disruptive in school or who are not in school may not benefit from formal education.

Seven percent of American Indian/Alaska Native public school students in kindergarten through 12th grade were suspended in 2004. The suspension rate of American Indians/Alaska Natives was higher than that of Whites (5 percent), Hispanics (6.5 percent), and Asians/Pacific Islanders (3 percent), but was lower than the suspension rate of Blacks (15 percent). Expulsion rates were similar between American Indians/Alaska Natives and all other racial/ethnic groups in 2004—below 1 percent each.

For each racial/ethnic group, males had higher rates of suspension than females. A higher percentage of Black and American Indian/Alaska Native males were expelled than Black and American Indian/Alaska Native females. However, there was no measurable difference between the rates of expulsion for White, Hispanic, and Asian/Pacific Islander males and females. A larger percentage of American Indian/Alaska Native males (10 percent) were suspended than White (7 percent) and Asian/ Pacific Islander (4 percent) males. This percentage was smaller than that for Black males (19 percent), but did not significantly differ from the percentage of Hispanic males suspended (9 percent). There was also no measurable difference between the percentage of American Indian/Alaska Native males who were expelled and that of White, Black, and Hispanic males expelled. For females, a higher percentage of American Indians/Alaska Natives (5 percent) were suspended than females of all other race/ethnicities except Black females (11 percent). There was no measurable difference between the expulsion rates of American Indian/Alaska Native females and females of all other races/ethnicities.

View Table View Table 3.2

Would you like to help us improve our products and website by taking a short survey?

YES, I would like to take the survey

or

No Thanks

The survey consists of a few short questions and takes less than one minute to complete.