VBCPS - Charting the Course
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: Lauren Nolasco
Date: 02/02/16 Phone: 757.263.1234
News Release No. 044 Fax: 757.263.1010
Email: lauren.nolasco@vbschools.com

Student Discipline Task Force recommendations published on e-Town Hall for feedback

In January 2015, the Virginia Beach City Public Schools (VBCPS) Student Discipline Task Force was created to analyze the division's current student discipline data with the goal of making recommendations to assist in achieving three objectives:

  • Reducing the number of suspensions administered throughout the division;
  • Closing the disproportionate gap that exists in the number of suspensions and/or expulsions administered to African-American male students compared to those administered to students in other demographic groups; and
  • Maximizing instructional time for all students in the classroom.

The task force presented its recommendations to the School Board Feb. 2 after a year of reviewing the division’s discipline data as well as research studies, discipline reports and best practices from other divisions. Based on that work, the task force, comprised of students, parents, teachers, administrators and community partners, came up with the following five recommendations:

  • Recommendation One: Training for Transformation (this would include divisionwide training on discipline disproportionality, discipline training for all principals and assistant principals that includes cultural awareness and competency, divisionwide Mandatory Training with three-year recertification and building staff capacity to increase cultural competence and reduce implicit bias - principals trained and partnered with dedicated culturally competent teachers);
  • Recommendation Two: Increase the number of school psychologists;
  • Recommendation Three: Mandate mediation to be the first step in the Discipline Guidelines for all offenses but the most serious offenses;
  • Recommendation Four: Divisionwide implementation of Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports (PBIS); and
  • Recommendation Five: Establishment of an Office of Opportunity and Achievement (OOA)

These recommendations have been posted on the school division’s e-Town Hall in order for students, staff and community members to give their feedback. Those interested in viewing more information about the recommendations and offering feedback can visit e-Town Hall, the school division's online forum.

“I want to thank our Student Discipline Task Force for all of their work, research and open conversations this past year,” said VBCPS Superintendent Dr. Aaron Spence. “I would encourage our community and stakeholders to visit the e-Town Hall this month to learn more about these recommendations and give us their honest feedback on how they feel these would work in our schools.”

The e-Town Hall will be open through March 1. A summary of feedback will be provided to the School Board as part of the recommendation adoption process.


Department of Media and Communications, vbcpsweb@vbschools.com

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