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Educational Supports for Children and Youth

Discipline in Schools

The following resources provide important information about discipline in public schools (including charter schools) in Pennsylvania. These resources can help parents, caregivers, educators, school administrators, human service workers and providers to become informed about the state of the law in Pennsylvania and how the discipline process works.

 Discipline for Children and Youth with Special Education Needs  

Children and youth with special education needs are afforded additional disciplinary protections under Pennsylvania and federal law. Discipline for Children and Youth with Special Education Needs contains three resources to help answer the following questions:

  • What punishment can the school impose on a child with special education needs?
  • Can harassment of one student by another student be illegal?
  • What can be done if a child is being harassed?
  • How can the IEP team address behavioral issues a child is having?
  • Does the law limit the use of restraints by schools?

World Wide Web Icon PDF Icon Expulsions in Pennsylvania: Information for Parents and Guardians 

Provides basic information concerning school expulsions in Pennsylvania. It covers legal reasons for expulsion, the expulsion process, students’ right to expulsion hearings and to education during an expulsion, and advice for the expulsion hearing.  

World Wide Web Icon PDF Icon Fairness in School Discipline: A Guide for Attorneys and Advocates Who Represent Students 

This comprehensive publication is designed for attorneys and advocates who represent students. It covers all aspects of school discipline – from behaviors that can result in disciplinary action and punishments that can be imposed, to legal protections against search and seizure and self-incrimination.

World Wide Web Icon PDF Icon School Discipline in Pennsylvania  

Provides general information about:

  • school disciplinary rules in Pennsylvania,
  • students’ and parents’ rights in cases of in-school and out-of-school suspension,
  • transfers to an alternative education program,
  • expulsion and
  • the additional disciplinary protections for students with disabilities and for families whose native language is not English.

It is a publication of the Pennsylvania Education Law Center (ELC).

World Wide Web Icon PDF Icon When Can Your Child Be Expelled for Bringing Weapons to School? (Act 26) 

Explains Act 26, a Pennsylvania law that requires the expulsion for at least one year of any student who possesses a weapon on school property, at a school function, or going to and from school. It answers frequently asked questions including:

  • Who is affected by Act 26?
  • What is a weapon?
  • Will the police be notified?
  • What happens to a student who has been expelled? 

The Right School Setting training
PowerPoint The Right School Setting
PDF Icon The Right School Setting  

Discusses the right school setting for children that are placed in care with the county child and youth agency. This entails why school stability and setting are important for these children and what to know when dealing with issues such as disciplinary actions of the school.  

  • Education screening used with child welfare and the differences for children in care
  • Rights of students for in and out of school discipline and definitions
  • Issues to consider for the right setting and definitions
  • Rights of students in residential and alternative education placements

Supporting documents  

For other related trainings  


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