Zero Tolerance Policies: How Far Is Too Far?

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Patricia Kennedy March 8, 2011 EDF 1005 Discovery Paper #4 Zero Tolerance Policies: How Far is too far? Zero tolerance policies are the rules that every school in the county and state must follow. To be completely honest I am not the most knowledgeable about the zero tolerance policies. I have only heard about them and over heard people talking about certain parts. I do know that these policies are taken very seriously. Zero tolerance policies were created to prevent firearms from being brought to school. As the years progressed weapons other than firearms, drugs, alcohol, violence, and tobacco possession has been add to the zero tolerance policies. The punishment for breaking those policies is either suspension or expulsion. Many different people, for and against the zero tolerance policies, have very interesting views with there only being two punishment options. Some people are for the zero tolerance policies but against suspension and expulsion as the only punishment. They fear the full purpose of the policies is not being instated effectively. They also believed that only expelling or suspending a student based solely on what they have done without looking at their history or their age, is not treating the students fairly. Also, it is looked upon as contributing to the increase number of dropouts in schools. Sandra Feldman, president of the American Federation of Teachers, the nation's second largest teachers union, which has pushed hard for zero-tolerance policies states, "These are examples of adults not exercising proper responsibility. I'm always in favor of just plain common sense."(Zero-tolerance policies lack flexibility by Dennis Cauchon, USA Today).On the other hand, the people who fully support the punishment of the zero tolerance policies punishments say that this way of punishment is working. “Supporters of policies that expel students for

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