PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — The Rhode Island chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union says black students were suspended last year from public schools at the highest rates in nine years. White students were suspended at record low rates.

The group's report, released Monday, is based on a review of state data from the 2012-2013 school year.

It found that black and Hispanic students were disproportionately suspended relative to the size of their populations. It found that white students were suspended less often than would be expected.

Suspensions overall were down following implementation of a law prohibiting out-of-school suspensions for attendance violations. But the report found that more than 60 percent of suspensions last school year were for "low-risk behavioral infractions."

Education Commissioner Deborah Gist's spokesman had no immediate comment on the report.


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