What follows are some potential guiding questions for teams to consider as they begin to
review discipline data and establish priorities for creating proactive and equitable discipline
policies and practices. These guiding questions could be a basis to get started, or to complete
questions that are relevant for each local school context. The responses to the questions could be
used to establish school priorities that could be aligned with other school-based system reform
Sample Guiding Questions:
1) What are your schools/districts doing with respect to policy and practices surrounding
discipline? How do you handle written procedures and communication with families and
students? How is student exclusion (e.g., suspension and expulsion) handled and
addressed? Are data reviewed and disaggregated in any way (e.g., by race/ethnicity)?
What role, if any, do school psychologists play in the process? What role, if any, do legal
advocates play with respect to discipline policies and practices within your school?
2) What role, if any, do state policies play in the development of your school/district’s
policies and procedures? What policy guidance, support and/or mandates has your
school/district received from your state board of education?
3) In what way (if at all), have recent federal documents such as the “Guiding Principles”
influenced decisions made with respect to discipline at your school/district?
4) What questions should we be asking with respect to school discipline as school
psychologists? Legal advocates? How can legal advocates/attorneys partner with school
psychologists to create effective discipline policies at the school/district, state or national
level? How can we partner at the state/national level as school psychologists to advocate
for effective discipline and behavior practices with students? What barriers might exist
with these partnerships? What might facilitate such partnerships?
5) What are other issues that arise in creating equitable and prevention-oriented written
discipline policies that align with practices such as multi-tiered systems of support and
providing effective behavioral supports?