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Chicago School Suspension Attorney

A suspension is when a school removes a student from class for 10 days in a row or less. If a school decides to expel a student, it will usually suspend that student before holding an expulsion hearing. 

School Suspension

Schools can suspend a student’s for many actions including: 

  • Disobeying school staff 
  • Leaving the school without permission 
  • Being caught with cigarettes or lighters 
  • Damaging school property 
  • Using pagers or cell phones without permission 
  • Gambling 
  • Fighting 
  • Forgery 
  • Cheating or copying the work of another student or other source 
  • Bullying, or using threats, intimidation, or violence 
  • Turning on the fire alarm when there is no fire 
  • Stealing or bringing stolen goods to school 
  • Using or bringing fireworks to school 
  • Inappropriate sexual conduct 

Suspension Length

School personnel decides how long to suspend a student, but they must follow the school’s disciplinary handbook, which you and your child should have received and reviewed carefully at the beginning of the school year. If you do not have a copy of your district’s disciplinary handbook, you should request one as soon as possible. Many school districts also post their disciplinary handbook online. 

A school may suspend students for up to 3 days for each serious act of disobedience or misconduct if the student’s presence in school would: 

  • Be a threat to school safety 
  • Disrupt the other students’ learning experience 

A school may suspend a student for more than 3 days only if the school has tried other interventions and they haven’t worked and the: 

  • Student’s presence in school would be a threat to school safety 
  • Student’s presence in school would disrupt the other student’s learning experience 

If a school suspends a student for longer than 4 days, they must provide appropriate and available support services while the student is suspended.

In some situations, the school may also call the police. However, the school is not allowed to have their own booking station on school grounds where police detain students for criminal behavior. 

Suspension Procedures

When a student is suspended, the school must provide written notification to the parent or guardian.  This written notice should include: 

  • The reasons your child is being suspended, including the specific act your child did that resulted in the suspension 
  • The number of days your child will be suspended, and why the school has chosen that number of days 
  • Notice of your right to appeal the school’s decision to suspend your child. 

The school must give a student suspended for more than 3 days the opportunity to make up work for equivalent school credit. 

School Bus Suspension

A school bus suspension may be for more than 10 days for safety reasons and may affect the student’s ability to get to school. If a student is suspended from riding the bus and has no alternative transportation, the school must allow the student to make up missing work. The parent or guardian of the suspended student must tell the school that the student has no other way to get to school. 

Handling Your Child’s Suspension from School

1. Verify that the suspension is true

If your child comes home and tells you that they have been suspended, the first thing you should do is call the school principal or assistant principal to make sure this is true. If you have not received notice of the suspension in writing, request a written report that states the reasons for the suspension and the number of days your child will be suspended.

2. Ask for schoolwork for your child

You should ask for schoolwork for your child during the suspension. This makes it easier for your child to keep up in school.

3. Consider appealing the suspension

You may ask to appeal the suspension. At the appeal hearing, you may talk about the suspension and give reasons why you think your child should not be suspended. The meeting may not take place before the suspension ends.

At the meeting, you can ask the school to remove the suspension from your child’s school record. This may make it less likely that your child will be expelled for later alleged misconduct. It may also make it more likely that your child will be offered an alternative to expulsion for later misconduct.

Law Office of William Carlos Weeden

The information on this website has been provided for general informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice nor create an attorney-client relationship or warrant that a certain result will be attained in a specific case. The Supreme Court of Illinois does not recognize certifications of specialties in the practice of law and the certificate, award or recognition is not a requirement to practice law in Illinois. We encourage you to contact us or another legal professional for advice regarding your individual situation.

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