TPSD to focus on classroom management early

By Chris Kieffer/NEMS Daily Journal

TUPELO – The Tupelo Public School District will emphasize the importance of the first 20 days of the school year as it works to improve student discipline.
Assistant Superintendent Fred Hill presented an update on the district’s 2011-12 discipline plan during Thursday’s school board meeting. That plan will involve a more comprehensive list of rules and consequences than the one the school district currently uses.
It also involves an emphasis that teachers use the first 20 days of the school year to establish classroom expectations that will set the tone for the remainder of the year.
The idea, district leaders said, is that if more time is spent on classroom management during the beginning of the year, more time can be spent on learning at the end of the year, after that climate has been established.
“From the moment he or she walks into the door, the student should know what to expect,” Hill said, adding that discipline begins the moment a student arrives at the bus stop.
Meanwhile, the school district presented a draft of its new discipline document at its March 29 school board meeting. That 60-page document is much more detailed about specific violations and their consequences than the discipline ladder the district currently uses. It also differentiates between major and minor violations.
Hill said less complicated versions of the document will be created for teachers and parents, and public feedback is encouraged. The one for teachers will be broken down to what is expected at their particular grade levels.
Once further drafts of the discipline documents are completed, they will be made public. They also may be emphasized at school open houses, Hill said.
Contact Chris Kieffer at (662) 678-1590 or chris.kieffer@journalinc.com.