Lawmakers Debate School Discipline Overhaul

March 22, 2012 12:00 AM

Lawmakers Debate School Discipline Overhaul
" DENVER (CBS4)- State lawmakers are debating the biggest overhaul of school discipline in Colorado in more than a decade. Students began the effort to revamp the “Zero Tolerance” policies and now lawmakers are taking action.

In the aftermath of the Columbine High School shootings, Colorado lawmakers overhauled school discipline. They enacted zero tolerance policies intended to make schools safer.

“A lot of my peers in school were being pushed out, suspended,” said student Yamili Quezada.

Studies show 100,000 students across Colorado have been referred to police over the past 10 years for on campus incidents. The vast majority of those cases are trivial- mouthing off, pulling hair and stealing a piece of gum.

The U.S. Department of Education said black and Hispanic kids are being cuffed far more often than their white peers.

“My friend got a ticket for disturbing the peace just for trying to stop a fight,” said student Dionna Hudson.

Hudson is among a group of students so troubled by what they saw happening, they decided to take action and take their case to the state Capitol "

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