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Fifteen-year-old Diamond stopped going to school the day she was expelled for lashing out at peers who constantly harassed and teased her for something everyone on the staff had missed: she was being trafficked for sex. After months on the run, she was arrested and sent to a detention center for violating a court order to attend school.
Just sixteen percent of female students, black girls make up more than one-third of all girls with a school-related arrest. The first trade book to tell these untold stories, Pushout exposes a world of confined potential and supports the growing movement to address the policies, practices, and cultural illiteracy that push countless students out of school and into unhealthy, unstable, and often unsafe futures.
For four years Monique W. Morris chronicled the experiences of black girls across the country whose intricate lives are misunderstood, highly judged—by teachers, administrators, and the justice system—and degraded by the very institutions charged with helping them flourish. Morris shows how, despite obstacles, black girls still find ways to breathe remarkable dignity into their lives in classrooms, juvenile facilities, and beyond.
Kristyl Dawn Tift is an Atlanta-based actress, singer, and narrator whose voice has been described as "warm," "engaging," "versatile," and "dynamic." She holds an MFA in acting from the New School for Drama in New York City, and has been performing professionally since 2004. On stage, she has worked with True Colors Theatre Company, Aurora Theatre, Theatre Emory, and the Alliance Educational Theatre. She has been in such films and televisions shows as Hall Pass, Necessary Roughness, One Tree Hill, and House of Payne. As a performer, her voice is an integral part of creating memorable characters and telling affecting stories.