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Trump plans to cut Obama’s dangerous anti-discipline policy ‘turning our schools into war zones’

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Amid all the concern about violence in our schools, the Trump administration plans to scrap a controversial .

A policy critics say caused educators to turn a blind eye to escalating bad behavior, according to the New York Post.

Barack Obama with preschoolers
(AP Photo/ Evan Vucci)

Citing statistic that showed, on average, black students being suspended at three times the rate of their white classmates, the Justice Department and the Education Department issued a joint directive in 2014 warning public schools receiving federal funding their financial aid could be cut if they do not reduce statistical “disparities” in discipline by race, the newspaper noted.

More from The Post:

The directive also discourages student arrests and holds districts liable for the actions of “school resource officers … or other law enforcement personnel.”

The one-size-fits-all federal policy, which recommends group counseling sessions and other alternatives to traditional discipline, has been foisted on several hundred school districts serving millions of students through investigations and threats of investigation that have continued into the Trump administration. More than 300 school districts remain under federal scrutiny, including NYC schools.


Max Eden, an education policy expert and senior fellow at the Manhattan Institute, described the scope of the current directive as “breathtaking.”

Citing surveys, Eden told The Post that schools serving predominantly minority students are feeling the effects of the resulting breakdown in discipline the hardest, as violence and chaos have become the norm in urban districts.

The surveys show teachers now feel unsafe and students physically attack faculty and staff more frequently.

“These policies are highly dangerous,” said Nicole Landers, a parent with three kids in the Baltimore school system. “They are turning our schools into war zones.”

Landers was part of a delegation of parents, teachers, students and police who recently shared horror stories with Education Department staffers, explaining that federal guidelines ushered in under President Barack Obama have made it difficult to discipline violent bullies, according to The Post.

Education Department officials told the Post the Obama-era directive, known as the “2014 Dear Colleague letter,” will be rescinded this year, to be replaced by a new rule.

The paper reported that federal government intends to make it clear that it will no longer rely on the legal theory known as “disparate impact,” a disputed proposition the Obama administration used to threaten school districts with discrimination charges.

Naturally, Democrats and civil rights groups back the Obama-era directive, which they say is “a critical tool” for protecting black students from being discriminated against by being “disproportionately” kicked out of school.

Tom Tillison


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