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Teachers may misinterpret trauma-related behavior — struggles to focus in class, sleeping in class, being irritable — as being disrespectful. In addition, adults view black girls as less in need of nurture, protection, support and comfort than white girls of the same age, according to research by Jamilia Blake and colleagues from the Georgetown Law Center on Poverty and Inequality. As a result, school officials might respond to black girls with less compassion and more discipline. Police may act on these same biases when making decisions about whether to arrest a child.

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