State

Sep 12, 2011 8:32 PM by Kirsten Bennett

Colorado panel weighs scaling back strict school discipline

DENVER (AP) - A Colorado legislative committee is weighing whether to eliminate zero-tolerance school disciplinary policies created after the Columbine High School shootings.

The panel created by the Legislature this year is also exploring ways that school districts can have more control over how they discipline students, instead of being forced to involve law enforcement. Those were some of the suggestions from police, lawmakers and community members who met Monday to discuss possible legislative measures for next year.

Lawmakers on the panel say disciplinary rules at schools have gone too far and students are being punished for minor infractions because of the heightened alert over high-profile cases of youth violence.

Lawmakers say about 100,000 students in Colorado have been referred to police during the last decade. The panel meets again later this month.

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