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Discipline policies drive the actions of your staff and have a major impact on students in your school. Examining and adjusting your schoolwide policies to support student success is an essential step in fostering Positive School Discipline.

Strict school policies typically do not allow for discretion in consequences. A strict policy automatically penalizes student misbehavior without considering the underlying reasons for the student’s actions—which may only exacerbate the problem.

Keeping students in school is fundamental to their academic success. Excluding them through the use of harsh, punitive policies disengages students—leading many to drop out and even become involved with the juvenile justice system.

Reserving out-of-school suspension and expulsion for the most serious safety-related infractions, and relying on viable research-based alternatives for other offenses is an important step toward a Positive School Discipline culture.

Our online course will explore some of these alternatives and help you learn how to shift policies from punitive to restorative—so that students take responsibility for and repair the harm they have done.


  • Garfield High School trades suspensions for referrals to services and increases graduation rates.

    Los Angeles Unified School District , California