Lawmaker Investigates Louisiana’s School Discipline Procedures
Almost 9 percent of Louisiana's 61-thousand public school students received an out of school suspension during the last academic year. That number is too high according to one Baton Rouge lawmaker. State Senator Sharon Weston Broome is investigating whether or not the state's discipline policy is actually serving the best needs of the students involved.
Broome spoke with the Louisiana Radio Network and suggested that sending a disruptive or troubled child home may not be the best solution for the situation at hand.
"Especially when we look at the number of elementary school students who are perhaps taken out of the school setting for minor infractions,"
Broome is meeting with teachers, principals, and school board members to get their feelings on whether suspension and expulsion are actually helping or hindering the disciplinary and ultimately the educational process.
The Department of Education report that suggested almost 9% of the states public school student body shows that most of the suspensions were for actions such as; fighting, willful disobedience, disrespect of teachers, or the use of drugs. Broome's concern is that sending these students home to a less than positive environment might be sending the wrong message to these troubled students.
Senator Broome did make it a point to say her investigation is to help find a better way to help these troubled students learn.
"But it is not my goal to serve as an obstructionist to discipline that administers might need to exercise,"
Senator Broome represents the Baton Rouge area in the Louisiana State Senate and currently serves as President Pro Tempore of that body.