New state data show a steep drop in suspensions and expulsions of California students, continuing a downward trend. Altogether, 20 percent fewer students were expelled and 15 percent fewer students were suspended in 2013-14 than in the previous year.
It’s a belief repeated every day by teachers, principals and parents of rule-abiding children: Suspending disruptive students will allow the rest of the class to settle down and learn. But a new, large study calls this rationale into question.
A new law that limits the use of “willful defiance” as a reason to expel or suspend students signifies a growing commitment on the part of the state to find more positive approaches to disciplining students.