Sunday, November 26, 2006

Questions and Guidelines for In School Suspension Programs

Look at the following areas when you examine your in school suspension (ISS) program.

What are the school experiences of your ISS students? What patterns occur?

Compare their age to their grade. Overage students are more likely to be suspended.

How many ISS students are in low tracks?

From whose classes are these students being suspended? In some schools 80% come from 20% of the teachers.

Look for racial/ethnic backgrounds. Be aware of the "push out" phenomenon.

Here are some guidelines reported by Anne Wheelock of Boston from an out of print book, "Everybody's Business" by Joan First and Hayes Mizell.

First and Mizell suggested that any in-school suspension program have:

=A clear statement of purpose;

=Written procedures developed with teachers, students and parents clearly
stating how student are referred and assigned to in-school suspension;

=Designation of an administrator responsible for determining if assignment
is appropriate and who has the authority and resources to pursue other
actions if referral is not;

=Provision of an academic component so that students keep up with their class;

=Requirements that teachers continue to provide daily resources and materials
to referred students;

=Provision of a counseling component to help referred students;

=Provisions for notifying and engaging parents;

=Procedures for monitoring and follow-up of individual student progress;

=Provisions for collecting information that summarizes the numbers of students
assigned to in-school suspension for each quarter by race and referring
teacher -- and regular reporting of this information to the school community.

From In Case You Missed It.

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