California May Ban Schools from Suspending Students for ‘Defiance’ of Teachers

The California State Senate voted to ban schools and principals from suspending students for “willful defiance” of teachers, staff, and administrators.

The Senate approved SB 419 Monday by a vote of 30-8. It moves to the Assembly next.

A similar bill was vetoed by Governor Jerry Brown last legislative session.

Under the new version (Senate Bill 419), students in grades 4-8 wouldn’t be suspended for disrupting school activities or willfully defying school authorities, including teachers and staff. The bill would also ban schools from suspending students in grades 9-12 for the same thing until January 1, 2025. The law would apply to both public and charter schools.

Existing law already prohibits schools from suspending children in grades K-3 for disrupting or willful defiance. Existing law also prevents schools from recommending the expulsion of students in all grades for disrupting or willful defiance.

Students could still be suspended or expelled for other acts, including threatening violence, bringing a weapon or drugs to school, or damaging school property. Teachers could also still be allowed to “suspend pupils from class for the day and the following day who disrupt school activities or otherwise willfully defied valid
authority of supervisors, teachers, administrators, school officials, or other school personnel engaged in the performance of their duties.”

As part of the new bill, superintendents or principals would be asked to provide alternatives to suspension or expulsion that are “age appropriate and designed to address and correct the pupil’s specific misbehavior.”

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SOURCE: CBS 13 Sacramento

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