L.A. School Discipline Reforms Praised By Latino Educators, Experts - NBC News.com: On Tuesday afternoon the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) is announcing a major reform in school discipline procedures. The changes, which will go into effect this school year, mean that the LAUSD will no longer issue citations for most campus fights and other minor infractions. Instead, students will be referred to counseling, mental health services, or other school-based solutions.
LAUSD serves roughly 650,000 K-12 students, 73 percent of whom are Latino.
LAUSD is shifting away from suspensions, arrests, and citations – and toward a more progressive system known as restorative justice. Under restorative justice reforms, school districts try to work with troubled students, rather than removing them from campus. Already, school districts from San Francisco, California to Broward County, Florida have embraced such reforms.
"LAUSD is the second largest school district in the country. The fact that it made this commitment to make this change really should be a strong statement to every other district, including those that may continue to follow very heavy suspension expulsion practices," said Thomas A. Saenz, president and general counsel of the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund.