Aaron Short, New York Post, February 14, 2015
It’s going to be a lot harder to suspend unruly students under the first overhaul of the public-school disciplinary code announced Friday by the de Blasio administration.
No longer will inappropriate clothes, profanity and insubordination earn students an automatic boot from class.
Principals will have to get permission from the Department of Education run by Chancellor Carmen Fariña before kicking out kids who talk back to teachers.
Superintendents’ suspensions for “minor physical altercations” are being eliminated entirely.
Cops and school safety officers will need a supervisor’s permission to handcuff a kid under 12, except in emergency situations.
And in a pilot project at five Bronx schools, disruptive kids will get “warning cards” instead of summonses returnable in court.
Mayor de Blasio, who vowed to reduce unnecessary suspensions and arrests when he ran for City Hall, said the new policies would “treat students of every background with dignity.”
Advocates were demanding reforms, pointing out that 89 percent of suspensions are handed out to black and Hispanic students, even though they comprise only 70 percent of the system.
There were 4,000 fewer suspensions in the first six months of de Blasio’s tenure in 2014, compared with the same period in 2013.