Texas Ed: Comments on Education from Texas

July 12, 2006

The benefits of zero tolerance

Navasota Examiner:

In addition to expulsions, lawmakers must also address the excessive number of removals to Disciplinary Alternative Education Programs (DAEPs), which now have over 100,000 students. Remarkably, these programs must provide only two hours of daily instruction, compared to the standard seven hour school day. Because school districts receive full state funding for these students, there is no excuse for providing them with only a half day or less of instruction.

Wow! Why should school districts blame homeschoolers for funding loses when they can just move kids into the DAEPs where they only have to provide minimum instruction and not have them counted as part of their campus rating system? Maybe that’s why school lobbyists were against the changes?

Navasota Examiner:

legislators in 2005 passed House Bill 603 clarifying that, before expelling a student, schools may consider “self-defense; intent or lack of intent at the time the student engaged in the conduct; a student’s disciplinary history; a disability that substantially impairs the student’s capacity to appreciate the wrongfulness of the student’s conduct.” However, at the behest of school lobbyists, the legislation was watered down from its original wording, which would have required these factors to be considered.

Geeze, they only said schools had to “consider” the circumstances–they could have gone ahead and ignored them once they were considered. But I guess that would make it look like they want to implement draconian zero-tolerance measures against a boy scout forgetting and bringing his pocket knife to school.

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