Most Never Sent to the Principal's Office

EUGENE, Ore., May 14 (UPI) — About 80 percent of U.S. students in primary and secondary school are never sent out of class to go to the principal’s office, U.S. researchers say.

Scott Spaulding, Larry Irvin, Rob Horner, Seth May, Monica Emeldi and Tary Tobin, all of the University of Oregon, and George Sugai of the University of Connecticut studied office referrals — being sent to the principal’s office — from 1,500 schools nationwide.


The study, published in the Journal of Positive Behavior Interventions, find elementary school students are most often sent to the principal for fighting with fellow classmates, middle-school students are mainly disciplined for being defiant or disruptive and high-school students are disciplined for being late or skipping class.

“These data help describe patterns of office discipline referrals within schools, across students from various grade levels, and for different problem behaviors,” Spaulding said in a statement.

“The findings add to our understanding about schoolwide practices for addressing problem behavior and should allow us to further examine the ways referral data are used.”

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