It's our job to challenge and change the practices that are failing students and contributing to the school-to-prison pipeline.
Although, progress has been made to develop African American literature, since the 1920’s, the presence of African American Literature has been on the decline. Before 1980, only 5% of African American literature was available by large publishing companies. By 2007, that number had decreased considerably to 2%.
According to The Campaign for Grade-Level Reading, “Reading proficiency by third grade is the most important predictor of high school graduation and career success” (2014).
Studies show that more than 80 percent of low-income students cannot read at or above grade level in the third grade thus widening the academic achievement gap and strengthening the school-to-prison pipeline that funnels children from public school to the criminal justice system. This growing epidemic fuels the importance of my research that will not only challenge, but will help change practices that are failing students and contributing to this pipeline.