The head of a Delaware state task force on school discipline says zero-tolerance policies leave no room for rational thinking.
State Rep. Michael Barbieri is hoping to change state laws and school policies to give greater flexibility to administrators who dole out punishments. The Democrat created the task force earlier this year after a 5th grader in the Christina school district was ordered expelled for bringing a serrated knife to school to cut a birthday cake. The expulsion was overturned. Earlier this month, a 1st grader in the same district was suspended for bringing in a camping utensil that included a knife.
The task force gathered for its second of three meetings last week. It is required to make recommendations to the General Assembly by Jan. 15.
A version of this article appeared in the November 04, 2009 edition of Education Week as Delaware Lawmaker Advocating Change to Zero-Tolerance Rules