A local education advocacy group is holding a workshop tomorrow on the topic of school suspensions.
Chapter 99 of the Council of Exceptional Children is holding the workshop called “Keeping Students in School: Alternatives to Suspension and Dealing with Truancy.”
Workshop presenter Bev Johns says in a press release that school suspensions are a local, growing problem, having almost tripled in the last two years.
Johns says for many students, suspension is a reward, not a punishment, and that when a student is out on the streets, crime and truancy increase, while graduation rates and academic achievement go down.
Johns says in District 117, almost 90 percent of those suspended from school are students at Turner Junior High School or Jacksonville High School.
Johns has authored several books dealing with school violence and managing aggressive students and notes she has previously served as the co-chair of the Truancy Task Force in Jacksonville.
One such book was co-written with John Keenan, Assistant Chief of Police at the Jacksonville Police Department, titled “Techniques for Managing a Safe School.”
Tomorrow’s workshop runs from 4:30 to 8 p.m. There is a cost of six dollars for students, twelve dollars for paraprofessionals and for Council for Exceptional Children members, and $25 for other teachers, parents and the general public. For more information, call 473-1790.