Officials say kicking kids with behavior problems out of school isn’t helping those children. So the U.S. Department of Education and Department of Justice have created new guidelines to revamp the way children are treated in school.
Today the U.S. Attorney’s office for the Southern District of Ohio brought school administrators, social workers, and school resource officers together to learn more about the state guidelines. Officials say they can help kids avoid criminal issues in the future.
The keynote speaker was Bryan Stevenson, executive director of the Equal Justice Initiative. His group fights what he describes as unfair sentencing and treatment of minors.
“I want us to actually be more hopeful," Stevenson says.
Stevenson says he's persuaded that we can make a difference in the lives of children - even kids who are struggling, "but it starts with these folks—these are the front line providers and if they have a different attitude about it I think we can see different results.”
Stevenson believes the new approach can provide a new message for kids and improve their decision-making down the road.
The conference in Columbus is the first of its kind in the country.