Giving Compass' Take:

· According to EdSource, the federal commission on school safety received a letter signed by a number of influential individuals in the education sector encouraging the continuation of Obama-era school discipline guidelines.  

· How effective are suspension alternative? Should school safety decisions be made by the federal government or by local school districts?

· Read more about the letter sent to Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos and the federal commission on school safety

As the federal commission on school safety headed by Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos ramps up its schedule of public forums, an unusually broad array of individuals and organizations has sent a letter imploring DeVos and Attorney General Jeff Sessions to retain federal guidelines issued by the Obama administration to combat racial disparities in school discipline.

The letter is significant both for its strong defense of students’ civil rights and because the more than 80 signatories include organizations and individuals who are not always allies on key issues.

Among them are prominent charter school organizations, superintendents of some of the nation’s largest school districts (such as Richard Carranza, the newly appointed chancellor of the New York City public schools), parent groups and the American Federation of Teachers. Signatories from California include The Broad Center, Ednovate and Green Dot California.

The commission, which President Donald Trump established following the February massacre of 17 people at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla., convened last Wednesday and heard from mental health and privacy experts regarding how schools can better identify and serve students with mental health issues.

Read the full article about school safety by David Washburn at EdSource.