HERRIN, IL (KFVS) - Illinois public schools will implement widespread reform to student discipline for the 2016-2017 school year.
The new law approved last year will make it more difficult for schools to suspend students.
Superintendent of Herrin Community Unit School District #4, Dr. Terry Ryker, explained that it aims to keep students in school and learning but will come at a cost.
"I think it's a good idea but I think the good schools have been trying to do this themselves," Ryker said. "And what it's done is it's forced the hand of some of the schools that have maybe not been able to do it in the past to try to figure out how they're going to afford to do this."
Illinois schools will also be required to allow students to make up an work they missed during a suspension. Schools will also have to offer support services such as counseling to students suspended longer than four days.
Ryker said many schools will need to implement an in-school-suspesnsion program, a common alternative discipline. However, schools will likely need to hire at least one full-time teacher to keep up with the law.
There is a direct correlation with student performance and attendance, Ryker said. However, cash-strapped Illinois schools may have a difficult time finding money in the budget to keep up.
Schools are required to have a policy in effect by September 15.