By Guy Page
The Vermont House yesterday passed S16, creation of the Task Force on School Exclusionary Discipline Reform. The goal of the task force is to reduce minority suspensions and expulsions from Vermont schools.
S16 would give Vermont educators data needed to reduce minority suspensions and expulsions “at the local level.” Sponsored by Sens. Richard Sears (D-Bennington) and Kesha Ram (D-Chittenden), it would create the School Discipline Advisory Council “to collect and analyze data regarding school discipline in Vermont public and approved independent schools” because nationally “Black students (representing approximately 15 percent of the U.S. student population) are suspended and expelled at a rate two times greater than white students (representing approximately 50 percent of the U.S. student population).”
There was no roll call in either the House or the Senate. Rep. Art Peterson (R-Clarendon) reported to Vermont Daily that he and several others voted against it.
Yesterday, the Senate notified the House it has adopted the following legislation:
House changes made to S114, improving prekindergarten through grade 12
Literacy, as well as the following House bills:
H421, animal cruelty investigation response and training, and adequate sheltering for livestock.
H430, expanding eligibility for Dr. Dynasaur to all income-eligible children and pregnant individuals regardless of immigration.
H434, establishing the Agricultural Innovation Board, to limit plastic waste and the use of pesticides.