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In Michigan, with a few legal exceptions, local school boards and administrators have the ability to facilitate changes in how discipline is approached and addressed in their districts. With solid leadership from administrators, school discipline can change from a system of punishment to one of culture change and support that addresses the needs of the students and keeps them in school and learning.  

Culture change addresses the root causes of negative situations and behaviors and helps develop high-functioning schools with students and staff who are happy to be there. The focus is on prevention and teaching students the skills to be able to persevere and build resilience. The work requires patience and persistence, but the rewards justify the effort. 

Many methods and strategies can help guide you through culture and climate change. This includes culturally responsible practices in schools. These approaches and processes should blend and support other school reform efforts already in place to create a positive school environment. 


Suspension and Expulsion Guidance Document

Resource Sheet for Alternative Discipline Measures

Model Code of Student Conduct (2019)

Michigan School Health Survey System

Social and Emotional Learning Resources

Mental Health Resources

Responding to and Counting Disciplinary Removals for Students with IEPs

Multi-Tiered System of Supports

Restorative Justice Practices