During Tuesday’s Havre Public School’s Board of Trustees meeting, Havre High School Principal Jerry Vandersloot and Assistant Principal Kipp Lewis addressed the board about disciplinary policies put in place this year.
With the fall semester wrapping up next week, administrators wanted to share the results of the changes.
Shortly after becoming assistant principal last year, Kipp Lewis, with Vandersloot, recommended a policy change, eliminating in-school suspension as a punishment and establishing an equivalent as two extended detentions.
Now misbehaving students will not be taken out of the classroom for a whole day, but rather have to spend an additional ninety minutes in school, after school.
“We’re making the kids serve on their own time,” Lewis said.
During this, its first semester, Lewis says that the policy has saved an equivalent of 64 days of in-school suspension.
Superintendent Andy Carlson is pleased with the preservation of all the class time that would have been missed.
“Rather than a discipline system that takes them out of class, I appreciate that the high school is trying to keep them in the classrooms,” Carlson said. “You can’t teach them if they’re not there.”
Lewis also addressed the board about the success of this semester’s meetings with students whose attendance, or lack thereof, is in danger of affecting their classes.
If a student misses 10 days of class in a semester, it begins to affect the credit they receive from that class.
When a student has missed around eight days of class, Lewis sets up a meeting with them to establish a plan to make sure they don’t end up facing consequences.
According to Lewis, 85 percent of these meetings resulted in positive change, and students following through.