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What state law has to say about suspensions and expulsions

Every parent wants to believe that school officials will always handle disciplinary actions in a circumspect manner and conform to all applicable rules and regulations, but this is sometimes just not the case.

While this reality might not cause much concern where it results in an extra homework assignment or even detention, it takes on far greater significance when words like suspension and even expulsion start being used by school officials. Given the gravity of either of these disciplinary measures, it behooves parents and students alike to learn as much as possible about the process and how to enforce their rights.

In today's post, we'll start taking a closer look at what the law here in Florida has to say about suspensions.

Who can initiate a suspension and under what circumstances?

In general, either the principal or their designee may decide to suspend a student for misbehavior. However, the suspension must be in accordance with the rules promulgated by the district school board.

How long can a suspension be?

Either the principal or their designee may suspend a student for up to 10 days, and have the option of extending the suspension if the student is being recommended for expulsion.

What about parental notification?

A good faith effort must be made by either the principal or their designee to immediately inform the affected student's parent(s) by telephone of the suspension and the reasons for the action. Furthermore, the law dictates that the affected student's parent(s) must be mailed a letter outlining the suspension and the reasons for the action within 24 hours.

Is the school district informed of suspensions?

The law dictates that the district school superintendent must be mailed a letter outlining the suspension and the reasons for the action within 24 hours.

We'll continue this important discussion in our next post. In the meantime, consider speaking with an experienced legal professional if your child has been threatened with suspension or expulsion, and you would like to learn more about your rights.

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