Sherman Howell

last updated 8/8/2017

Sherman Howell

Vice President at African American Coalition

Company:
African American Coalition

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Sherman Howell, vice president of the African American Coalition, said his organization welcomed the new Muslim Council and plans to work closely with the group.
"We share a lot of the same concerns," said Howell, noting that blacks make up a significant part of the Muslim community _ as high as 30 percent in some areas.

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Board of Directors - Heritage Housing Partners Corporation

SHERMAN HOWELL
African American Coalition

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Eliminating racial divide in Howard school suspensions requires community effort, county leaders say | Dignity In Schools

Discussing the impact of racism on suspensions, Sherman Howell, vice president of the African American Coalition for Howard County, pointed to a 2015 report by the Justice Policy Institute stating, "Several studies have looked at the relationship between race, behavior and suspension, and none of them have proven that black students misbehave at higher rates."
He also quoted a 2002 Indiana University study that found that white students were more likely to be disciplined for provable offenses, such as smoking, vandalism and obscene language, while black students were more likely to be disciplined for more "subjective" reasons, such as disrespect, excessive noise and loitering. According to the school system data, the most common infractions that led to the suspension of a black student in Howard County in the 2014-2015 school year were "Attacks, Threats, Fighting," followed by "Disrespect, Insubordination and Disruption." Walker and Howell both suggested measures that the school system could implement to mediate the effects of societal racism on local school discipline, such as diversifying staff and expanding cultural proficiency training. "Because, you have some good white teachers, but they don't know how to deal with those young African-American males," Howell said. Teachers need to engage, empathize with and meet students where they are, Howell and Walker said, to prevent unwanted behavior and keep them in the classroom. Even if all these changes are made, Walker and Howell said, it will take a larger cultural shift to truly eliminate racial disparities in school discipline. "First of all, someone has to own racism, and it has to be the white community," Howell said.

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