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Changes In School ‘Zero Tolerance’ Policies Headed To Governor Snyder’s Desk

Michigan Capitol
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Schools might get more freedom in how they discipline students in the future.  Legislation that would alter Michigan’s zero-tolerance policy in schools is headed to Governor Rick Snyder’s desk.

The legislation would, in part, give schools options besides automatic expulsion or suspension when bringing potential weapons into schools.  Proponents say it would help reduce the number of students out of school because of suspension or expulsion. 

Bill sponsor Representative Andy Schor (D-Lansing) said instead of automatically expelling or suspending a student, the intent should be examined. 

We just added language that says and the school can review the situation to see, and here are some options for what they would do whether there is intent or not intent,” he said.  “So we updated it.  We updated it for the better.”

Schor says they are “inserting just a little bit of common sense into the zero tolerance law.”

The legislation passed with overwhelming bipartisan support.  It would take effect on August 1, 2017. 

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—Cheyna Roth is a reporter for the Michigan Public Radio network.  Contact WEMU News at 734.487.3363 or email us at studio@wemu.org

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