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Unruly students to be ‘punished’ with work

Sandy Underhill. File photo

Months after she announced plans to reduce the number of suspensions given to students of Elmore Stout High School (ESHS), Principal Sandy Underhill has clarified that unruly students will be penalized by temporarily assigning them to the workforce.

She said the new school policy is outlined in the ESHS’ discipline manual, which was revamped and approved by Cabinet prior to Hurricane Irma.

“We feel that what better time to do it than now to allow students the opportunity to be a part of building back their community. So it’s not just punishment. Yes, you will be away from the environment where you caused havoc, but you’re also going to be a part of something productive and meaningful that is happening.”

Only students who commit what Underhill described as ‘high level infractions’ will be put to work.

“Let’s say a fight breaks out and somebody decides to bring a weapon or whatever to school; we don’t expect that, but we have a plan in place if it happens.”

“What will happen is…we are going to assign them to do work let’s say with Electricity Corporation, Public Works, or some company that’s out there building,” Underhill explained, adding that suspensions will not happen the traditional way when students were sent home for days.

The school principal, in the meantime, said students who commit lower-level infractions will be enrolled in counseling. “We are calling it behavior modifications,” she told BVI News Online.

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