BISD implements new changes to disciplinary program

Wednesday, October 9, 2013 - 5:23pm

What's the best way to discipline a child acting out at school?

It's a question every school district faces and one that Bryan Independent School District Superintendent, Dr. Tommy Wallis, thinks they've found the best solution to after more than a year of discussion.

"You know as well as I do that if children aren't treated consistently then that's when we start having problems and we don't want to have those problems," said Dr. Wallis. "So we've been proactive and we've modified it to a tiered system."

Now when a student gets in trouble the discipline referral process will be handled on a level-based system, ranking from one to ten, with ten being the most severe.

"By the time you get to level 10 we have, and a lot of people or viewers may think, 'Ten strikes, my gosh how much are you going to let them do?' but you've got to remember it could be a dress code violation, it can be truancy because those aren't things you immediately put a child in DAEP for."

Dr. Wallis tells us instead of immediately writing a citation and making a student appear before a judge parents can consent to send their child to "campus court."

At campus court a student will plead their case to a jury of peers who will then decide a set of consequences based on their actions or they can attend a Saturday Diversion Class with their parents because the ultimate goal is better communication.

"What you get is parents and students together with the school district talking about how we can better serve that child, better curb that consequence to make that child better because the ultimate goal is graduation and success after graduation," Wallis said.

The new changes went into effect Monday and while it's too early to tell if they'll help reduce the number of citations given, Dr. Wallis is hopeful.

"When the schools and the parents work together we all win, we all win."


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