AFT - American Federation of Teachers

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Continuum of Discipline Alternatives

Different students need different placements. For some, a short-term in-school setting where they are taught social skills and kept abreast of their regular school program will suffice. For others, a more restrictive environment and range of social and psychological services may be necessary.

Continuum of Discipline Alternatives

  • In-school crisic centers (short duration)
  • In-school suspension rooms (medium duration)
  • Off-campus alternatives

Without a continuum of alternatives, students who are mildly disruptive end up being treated the same way that habitually violent students are; a practice that is not educationally or morally defensible and that will not sustain public support. Whether the alternative placement program a student is referred to is in school or off campus, for students with severe problems, the placement should include a "wrap-around" program. Such programs link the student and his or her family to community- based social service agencies, law enforcement, courts and corrections, who join together to create an individually tailored, comprehensive treatment plan for the student. The student's family also plays an active role in the needs-assessments process and in the planning of treatment activities.