The law allows schools to discipline students in order to ensure an eff ective learning environment and to teach students about proper conduct. If your child has misbehaved, school discipline proceedings can off er a valuable opportunity to improve communication with teachers and principals.
In some cases, however, you might not agree with the school about what actually happened. Th ere may be parts of the disciplinary process that do not seem fair. You might feel that the punishment the school wants to impose is inappropriate. Th is guide off ers suggestions for all of these situations.
Even if your main goal is to reverse a punishment you disagree with, you can use the opportunity to explore common ground. At school discipline meetings, you can also discuss other related subjects such as:
- class assignment or scheduling changes
- special education
- accommodation of a handicap; or
- protection from bullying or harassment
Remember, school discipline decisions often result from angry situations, and they can sometimes provoke anger in turn. School personnel – and your child – may feel that their pride and ego are on the line. Try to make a special eff ort to remain calm and approach school personnel without being confrontational. In school discipline matters, you are likely to reach a more successful outcome if you can remain level-headed and diplomatic.