Suspensions And Expulsions Measure Heads To Illinois Governor

Governor Bruce Rauner at Lanphier High School in Springfield Tuesday.

Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner speaks to students during a visit to Lanphier High School in Springfield.

(AP Photo/Seth Perlman)

Legislation that would temper the way schools discipline students passed the Illinois House and Senate and now awaits the governor’s approval.

Suspensions and expulsions could be used only as a last resort.

Sarah Johnson, one of the youth leaders of the group, said the plan is designed to change the culture of schools.

“Our education system should be wanting us to stay in school and right now they’re pushing us out of school.

So the environment that we’re in, that our young people are in right now, is not an environment of learning. It’s an environment of push-out."

Representative Ron Sandack, a Downers Grove Republican, spoke in support of the measure.

“This is a best practices mandate, if you will," Sandack said. "It’s a requirement that the state tells the schools to go through a process before making the ultimate decision on rather extreme punishment for children.” 

The measure limits expulsions, zero-tolerance policies and disciplinary fines in all public and charter schools. If signed into law, it would take effect in the 2016 school year.

Story source: Illinois Public Radio