ERIC Number: ED207155
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1981-May
Reference Count: N/A
Some Alternatives to School Discipline: Parental Liability and Restitution. A Legal Memorandum.
National Association of Secondary School Principals, Reston, VA.
Suspension is often an inappropriate remedy for discipline problems since the students being suspended are inevitably those who most need to be retained in school. Other discipline methods that reinforce positive behavior warrant the consideration of school and civil authorities. Restitution, which allows juveniles to compensate for damages they have caused, is one approach that has gained favor in juvenile courts. It is particularly successful in cases of property damage. However, under the equal protection clause of the Fourteenth Amendment, administrators of such a program may not arbitrarily determine who should or should not be admitted. Guidelines have been developed in some areas to insure nondiscriminatory placement. Another approach to discipline is parent liability. Under certain circumstances, parents can be held financially responsible for their children's intentionally destructive acts. Since it is difficult to establish a causal connection between parents' behavior and the harm caused by their children, many states have enacted "no fault" parent liability statutes, hoping to encourage parents to supervise their children more carefully. School administrators should always make efforts to involve parents in discipline problems and seek the cooperation of local civil authorities in cases of serious, intentional harm to persons or property. (WD)
Descriptors: Administrator Role, Behavior Problems, Court Litigation, Delinquency, Discipline Policy, Discipline Problems, Elementary Secondary Education, Expulsion, Legal Responsibility, Parent Participation, Parent Responsibility, Punishment, Suspension
NASSP, 1904 Association Drive, Reston, VA 11091 ($0.50).
Publication Type: Legal/Legislative/Regulatory Materials
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: National Association of Secondary School Principals, Reston, VA.