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New Student Conduct Regulations Would Apply To All Public Schools

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D.C. is considering standardizing discipline rules in public schools.
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D.C. is considering standardizing discipline rules in public schools.

By Kavitha Cardoza

A revised Student Code of Conduct is under consideration in D.C. Some education advocates say this will help students, especially those in charter schools, understand their rights.

Victor Reinoso, deputy mayor for education, says these regulations will spell out a minimum standard of expectations.

"With so many charters and even with D.C. public schools over the years, individual schools got to different places," he says.

Kaitlin Dunne directs the Fair Discipline Project with the ACLU and represents students if they've been suspended or expelled. She says these regulations will help students, especially those in charter schools.

"What happens when you're defending a student who goes to a charter school, is that you need to figure out the rules in every situation and sometimes those rules aren't completely clear because the charter school hasn't written down the rules in their handbook or because there's no overarching state law or district law that applies," says Dunne.

Dunne says schools often don't hold hearings where the student can present their side of the story and don't provide written notice of a suspension or expulsion for parents.

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