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The Painful Journey Toward Schoolhouse Security and Safety

School policy has been evolving for decades, sometimes in reaction to major incidents of school violence, sometimes in response to societal changes and trends in the area of public safety. In some cases, districts have been forced to expel or suspend students in recent years because of state and federal laws. More recently, states and individual districts have, to some extent, been turning away from policies that allow unfettered use of consequences that lead to students’ absence from school.

School policy has been evolving for decades, sometimes in reaction to major incidents of school violence, sometimes in response to societal changes and trends in the area of public safety. In some cases, districts have been forced to expel or suspend students in recent years because of state and federal laws. More recently, states and individual districts have, to some extent, been turning away from policies that allow unfettered use of consequences that lead to students’ absence from school.

Sources: Education Week archives and research; the National Conference of State Legislatures; court rulings; interviews

Reporter: Nirvi Shah | Editor: Mark Bomster | Producer: Gina Cairney | Designer/Programmer: Chienyi Cheri Hung

Coverage of school climate and student behavior and engagement is supported in part by grants from the Atlantic Philanthropies, the NoVo Foundation, the Raikes Foundation, and the California Endowment.

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