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Oklahoma City Public Schools Discipline Audit Finds Inconsistencies, Prompts Changes

Last fall, the Office of Civil Rights filed a complaint against Oklahoma City Public Schools, saying the district suspended black and Hispanic students at a higher rate than others. This prompted the district to investigate their discipline practices. The results of that investigation came out Monday. 

Rob Neu, who is the superintendent of Oklahoma City Public Schools, told reporters on Tuesday  that the results of the discipline audit were worse than he expected.

“When I see the number of students suspended and the length of time that they’re being suspended—I have great concern.”

The report showed that there are major inconsistencies from school to school, but overall suspension rates were very high, and minority students were more likely to get in trouble.

On average students got suspended for 6 days, but at some schools the average suspension was 19 days. Neu said this is detrimental to students because they fall behind in their work.  

Kids were most commonly suspended for disruptive behavior, fighting, and defying authority. Neu said the district is revising its code of conduct, and  if kids aren’t threatening the safety of others then they need to stay in school.

Neu also wants the district to get better at intervening before problems get out of hand and emphasized that connecting with the student, parents, and community is vital to the solution.  

Emily Wendler was KOSU's education reporter from 2015 to 2019.
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