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Governance and Policy ResourcesResearch, guidance and services for effective school board governance

Appropriate student discipline is a necessary component of any district policy in order to provide a safe and positive school climate in which students are able to learn and thrive. Unfortunately research shows that harsh approaches to discipline do not improve school safety or improve student success. In fact California suspends more students than it graduates, and data shows that strict discipline policies disproportionately effect African American, Latino, Native American, and students with disabilities more than other student populations. Other negative outcomes of suspension and expulsion practices include:

  • Increased risk of dropping out
  • 2x as likely to repeat a grade
  • 3x as likely to have contact with the juvenile justice system
  • Higher frequency of 'repeat' offenders
  • Lower testing scores

CSBA Resources

 A blog post about a study from the American Institutes for Research that examined the effects of the type and length of suspensions received by middle and high school students on their educational outcomes, their same-grade same-school peers’ educational outcomes and school climate. 

CSBA policies on discipline/suspension & expulsion

  • BP 5144 Discipline
  • AR 5144 Discipline
  • BP 5144.1 Suspension and Expulsion/Due Process
  • AR 5144.1 Suspension and Expulsion/Due Process

How school districts should address student walkout

CSBA has produced the following resources for districts and county offices of education.

Research Resources

School Discipline Data

This link will take you to an online tool by which to view a particular district’s or pair of districts' rate of suspension for various demographics of students. The data can be broken down by race, race and gender, or race and disability status.
By The Center for Civil Rights Remedies at the Civil Rights Project at UCLA

Truancy, Suspensions, & Expulsions Tool

Interactive data tool covering school attendance and discipline with policy implications and research links from KidsData.

Additional Resources

California Compilation of School Discipline Laws and Regulations

This compilation presents school discipline-related laws and regulations for U.S. states, U.S. territories, and the District of Columbia, and, where available, links to education agency websites or resources related to school discipline and student conduct. The discipline laws and regulations presented in this compilation have been categorized by type of specific discipline issue covered, according to an organizational framework developed by the National Center for Safe and Supportive Learning Environments (NCSSLE). 

School Climate and Discipline
By US. Department of Education

U.S. Department of Education provides resources to support the challenging work of setting all students up for success and meeting their academic, behavioral, and mental health needs. Administrators, educators, students, parents, guardians, and other stakeholders can find tools, data, and resources on this site.

Fix School Discipline Toolkit
By the Public Counsel

Fix School Discipline is a comprehensive resource for students, parents, teachers, principals, community leaders and organizations, school superintendents, and anyone interested in learning about ending harsh, push-out discipline practices and putting in place solutions that work. Find the latest information about the impact of suspensions and expulsions on students and on school climate. 

How the Local Control Funding Formula can fix school discipline: What you need to know.  
By the Public Counsel

This guide describes how to use the Local Control Funding Formula to improve school climate and reduce suspensions and expulsions in your district. 

How to Support Students Reentering the Classroom After Facing Severe Disciplinary Actions
By the online Master of Social Work program at the University of Southern California.

A blog post from USC’s School of Social Work covering the data and consequences of severe discipline and strategies to help students transition back to the classroom.