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US Prison Costs Grossly Exceed Public Education Spending

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  • The relative modern day cost of incarceration in the US relative to public expenditures on elementary-secondary education strongly supports social policy planning that puts education first. Assuming that the total number of people imprisoned in the United States was 1.2 million in 2010, the average per-inmate cost was $31,286 and ranged from $14,603 in Kentucky to $60,076 in New York. In contrast, the US government spent $602 billion on the nearly 50 million elementary-secondary students in public schools in the US
  • Related: The West’s War on Children

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Tuesday, August 02, 2016 | The decrease in the national crime rate in the US during the past two decades was insufficient to offset the cost to US taxpayers to manage prisons because of the simultaneous increase in the rate of incarceration during the period. Between 1991 and 2013, the national crime rate fell from 1,311 to 689 offenses per 100,000 people. In absolute terms, 8.5 million fewer crimes were committed in 2013 compared to 1991. While the crime rate decreased, the number of state inmates grew by 200 percent nationwide, reaching a total incarcerated population of 1.6 million in 2008. Another 723,131 inmates were confined in local jails for a total adult inmate population of 2.3 million, or roughly 1 in 100 adults in the United States.

These trends in US criminal justice have come at a cost to American taxpayers. State corrections budgets have nearly quadrupled in the past two decades. Despite this alarming figure, official correction budgets account for only a portion of the financial obligations a state incurs when it sentences an individual to prison. The Vera Institute of Justice estimates that the total taxpayer cost of prisons, including additional indirect costs that fall outside correction budgets, was $39 billion in 2010. This is $5.4 billion more than official $33.5 billion total spending of state correction departments. These indirect costs vary widely, according to the Vera Institute, from 1 percent of the total cost of prisons in Arizona to 34 percent in Connecticut.

Knoema: Smarter research with the world's statistics in your hands

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Related:

The West’s War on Children, Bruce Frohnen, The Imaginative Conservative / Intellectual Takeout

  • The prejudice against children begins from an immoderate desire for order.
  • Special Project | The War on Children: Week Ending  January 9, 2016

 

Prof: Today’s Students and Professors ‘Know Hardly Anything about Anything at All’

  • Esolen’s above lament is supported not only by similar laments from his fellow professors, but also by statistics that show only a minority of American students are proficient in reading and writing, and by the fact that billions of dollars each year are spent on remedial courses in college.  
  • Do you think that things can be turned around in the near future? Or are we destined to slip further into an educational dark age?
  • Related: School climate: Students are stuck in a dysfunctional system

Daniel Lattier, Intellectual Takeout 

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August 8, 2016 Six months ago we shared a frightening observation from Patrick Deneen, a political science professor at Notre Dame who has also taught at Princeton and Georgetown. He described his students as “know-nothings… devoid of any substantial knowledge.”

More recently, a respected author and English professor at Providence College in Rhode Island has echoed Deneen’s concerns.

Daniel Lattier received his B.A. in Philosophy and Catholic Studies from the University of St. Thomas (MN), and his M.A. and Ph.D. in Systematic Theology from Duquesne University in Pittsburgh, PA. During his doctoral studies, he served as an adjunct professor, spoke at a number of academic conferences, and published articles in peer-reviewed journals.

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School climate: Students are stuck in a dysfunctional system, Earl Holdridge, Minneapolis (MN) Star Tribune 

The way our schools are organized is at odds with learning and dispiriting for students. Naturally, some rebel. 

From Obama's election to 'Black Lives Matter' — how?

  • The same poverty. The same criminal-justice system. What can honestly be said to have changed in the lives of young African-Americans? 
  • Related: The movement will not be criminalized

Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor, Minneapolis (MN) Star Tribune  

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http://stmedia.startribune.com/images/610*425/rap072313a.jpg Photo: Kristin Pelisek, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel/MCT

August 1, 2016 | Eight years ago, at the dawn of the Obama era, pundits seriously debated whether the election of the nation’s first black president would mark an end to the country’s long history of racial inequality. Weeks after Obama was elected, Forbes Magazine jubilantly published an editorial headlined “Racism in America Is Over.” While few others went quite so far, 7 out of 10 Americans did believe that “race relations” would improve as a result of the Obama presidency.

What happened? How did we get from the optimism of Barack Obama’s presidential run to the eruption of a protest movement calling itself Black Lives Matter? Perhaps the optimism itself is to blame, or rather the contrast between Obama’s promise and the reality of his tenure.

Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor is the author of “From #BlackLivesMatter to Black Liberation” and professor of African-American Studies at Princeton University. Taylor wrote this article for the Los Angeles Times.

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Related:

The movement will not be criminalized, Janae Bonsu, People's World

http://www.peoplesworld.org/assets/Uploads/polieshootings530x310.jpgPhoto: Riot police arrest a nurse protesting peacefully in Baton Rouge.  |  Max Becherer/AP

  • Alton Sterling - just like with Tanisha Anderson and countless others - lost their lives after police were called. We have no other choice than to be more vigilant than ever - not only in our resistance, but in our commitment to building an abolitionist future in our everyday lives. We have to be unyielding in our right to resist, and brave, imaginative, and bold enough to interrogate all the ways in which we don't have to rely on police; we have to increasingly rely on, love, support, and protect each other. Our lives depend on it.
  • Related: From the Archives | The Bandwagon of Hate: America’s Cancer

 

Boys Today Aren’t Getting Enough Time Around Men

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Is it any wonder that there's a lack of good men?

Daniel Lattier, Intellectual Takeout

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http://www.intellectualtakeout.org/sites/ito/files/boy_looking_out_window.jpgJuly 28, 2016 | A basic premise of the apprenticeship model is that people best learn by example.  

Thus, if you want to become a skilled piano player, you study for years under a virtuoso. If you want to be a good electrician, you work under a master electrician for a period of time.

And if you want your boy to grow up to be a good man, he should spend a large portion of his childhood years around good men.

Daniel Lattier is the Vice President of Intellectual Takeout. He has a Ph.D. in Systematic Theology and during his doctoral studies, he served as an adjunct professor, spoke at a number of academic conferences, and published articles in peer-reviewed journals.

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Where Do We Draw the Line When It Comes to Zero Tolerance in Schools?

  • It is with good reason that the Justice Department has urged schools to abandon their zealous enforcement of zero tolerance policies. Some administrators are reluctant to do so because zero tolerance policies allow administrators to deflect blame for their actions by saying “I’m just enforcing the policy.” But the Due Process Clause requires schools to treat students fairly. That means exercising judgment to distinguish behaviors that merit punishment from those that don’t. The wise exercise of discretion might be more difficult than the blind enforcement of a zero tolerance policy, but it is also more just.
  • Related: The West’s War on Children

T.C. Kelly, Free Advice Legal

http://fa.advstatic.com/blog-img-D968582630E4-300x200.jpg  July 9, 2016 | Schools often adopt “zero tolerance” policies to enforce rules they deem to be particularly important. Critics argue that “zero tolerance” equates with “zero thinking.” Rather than exercising the discretion and sound judgment for which school officials are paid, the application of “one size fits all, no exception” policies shields administrators from the burden of making decisions.

Zero tolerance policies are a questionable means of achieving worthy ends. Keeping drugs out of schools is a desirable goal, but zero tolerance policies have resulted in children being expelled or banished to alternative schools for taking Tylenol or Midol. Surely a school principal should know the difference between Ecstasy and aspirin and should be capable of treating them differently.

T.C. Kelly regularly authors legal content on FreeAdvice.com on a part-time basis.

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The West’s War on Children, Bruce Frohnen, The Imaginative Conservative / Intellectual Takeout

  • The prejudice against children begins from an immoderate desire for order.
  • Special Project | The War on Children: Week Ending  January 9, 2016

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