Maryland school officials approved sweeping changes to the state's discipline policy Tuesday, banning zero-tolerance approaches and requiring local school boards to emphasize rehabilitation over punishment.
In a unanimous preliminary vote, the State Board of Education emphasized that cutting down on expulsions and long-term suspensions would translate to more classroom time and higher achievement for students, the ultimate goal of the state's school system. The changes are subject to state review and public comment and will be put to a final vote next month.
"No student comes to school 'perfect,' academically or behaviorally. We do not throw away the imperfect or difficult students," the state board wrote in a report explaining the changes.
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