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Killeen ISD had more pre-k suspensions than any other Texas district in 2017-18

Posted at 10:58 AM, Aug 28, 2019
and last updated 2019-08-28 19:01:51-04

KILLEEN, TX — A new report shows that Killeen ISD issued more pre-k suspensions than any other district in Texas in 2017-18.

The report by Texans Care for Children, found that the Texas schools decreased out of school suspensions for students in early grades after the legislature banned the practice for pre-k through second grade.

The legislation prohibits out-of-school suspensions in early grades, with exceptions of rare circumstances such as pre-k through second grade students bringing weapons or drugs to school.

However, data revealed that Killeen ISD issued many more suspensions than any other district in the state.

Killeen ISD issued 44 percent of the state's pre-k in school suspensions in 2017-18.

The district reported that it nearly eliminated out of school suspensions in early grades during the 2018-19 school year.

"We appreciate the opportunity to reply to your inquiry associated with Killeen ISD pre-k - 2, suspension data during the 2017-2018 school year and In School Suspension (ISS.) While the numbers were disproportionate to the state, we acknowledge the accuracy of the data. More importantly, Killeen ISD created several internal controls to reiterate the importance of HB674. Upon conversations with Texas Education Agency, KISD reduced the number of out of school suspensions for pre-k - 2 to a total of 4 during the 2018-2019 school year.

In reference to ISS, the numbers remained stagnate between the two school years. We continue to work with parents and campuses to better understand the whole child and identify all variables when approaching challenging student behaviors. It is vital to recognize mental health and behavior support as a realistic response to alternative settings. The district is currently modeling mental health and behavior support programs on Fort Hood campuses, and is now exploring expanding the program outside on Post campuses. The district is setting aside 1.5 million dollars to systemically expand the program."
said Dr. Eric Penrod, Killeen ISD Deputy Superintendent