District has ACTIONS planned for suspensions

Published 08/22 2013 12:22PM

Updated 08/22 2013 12:45PM

CHAMPAIGN -- Suspension in Unit 4 is now called the ACTIONS program. Instead of students spending their suspensions at home, they'll do it at school. ACTIONS stands for "Alternative Center for Targeted Instruction and ONgoing Support."

This is the first year the district is using the program. Two teachers will be in charge of targeting the behavior problem and hopefully fixing it before the student heads back to class. WCIA-3's Erica Quednau explains.

Even though the school year is just starting, parents are already excited.

"I would prefer her to be getting more knowledge than just sitting there blanking out the day."

Willie Sanders' daughters aren't in school yet, but he's excited that, when they are, the ACTION program will be an option in case they get in trouble.

"It's a great idea. That don't make no sense for you to sit at home and just not get your education."

It's an experience Sanders can relate to.

"I used to be bad and I used to be bad just to go home."

That's what Unit 4 leaders are afraid of. They found during a suspension, kids are picking up the remote instead of a book.

"A lot of students looked forward to that. They would sometimes get in trouble because they wanted to be home."

"What we've found is that suspensions are successful for some students, but for others, they not only need a consequence for their behavior, but they also need some education on how to act differently next time."

So, suspension time will now consist of lessons, including social skills, help with homework and projects which will better their school.

"I can't wait to see them have that realization that they can control their behavior and that they can manage themselves in a way that makes them more successful in school."

"Be a doctor, be a teacher, make them want to go and volunteer. Do something positive than what they're doing at home. I appreciate Champaign and Urbana for it because I got little kids right now and, if she's going to be bad, I don't want her out in the streets."

The ACTIONS program is for students K - 12. It's held at the Family Education Center.

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