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keeping kids in school and learning

The Denver Foundation’s Learning Cohort to End the School to Prison Pipeline: Common Sense Discipline to Keep Kids in School and Learning.

Research shows that a student who is suspended is far more likely to repeat a grade and even to drop out. In fact, high rates of suspension lower academic achievement and increase behavioral problems for the entire school. What’s more, a student who is suspended even once is three and a half times as likely to have an interaction with the criminal justice system in the coming year. And in all these cases, young people and particularly young men of color are disproportionately represented – and receive far harsher consequences than other students receive for the same behaviors.

Community members, teachers, principals, and nonprofits are coming together with district leadership to take a bold stand against these factors. The Denver Foundation is honored to partner with the community in this important work to implement common sense discipline to keep kids in school and learning through:

  • Restorative Justice and Restorative Practices in schools
  • Culturally responsive and trauma-informed practices
  • Socio-emotional learning
  • Engaging parents as leaders and equitable partners in the work
  • A common focus on equity, including deliberate and formative use of data
  • A common focus on uncovering and addressing underlying causes of suspensions and the STPP 
  • Video documentation to record and share the stories within, behind, and of the work

Watch a trailer of Rising Above: Communities Coming Together to Keep Kids in School and Learning, a documentary short telling the story of this work.

Learn more about the Learning Cohort [PDF].

For more information, please contact us at