California public schools can’t suspend students for disobeying teachers, new law says

In 2020, new laws will have an effect on schools across California. Starting next school year, suspending students from first through fifth grade will be illegal for public schools in the state to deliberately defy teachers or administrators.

Then it will be temporarily extended to children in grades six through eight from 2021 to 2025. Supporters say suspensions are used disproportionately against color students for willful defiance.

Another new law— a mandatory change to the start times of kindergarten. Over the next three years, the legislation is expected to be phased in. High schools will start as early as 8:30 a.m. and as early as 8 a.m. for middle schoolers.

The contentious move could be expensive, some schools that end up spending millions to accommodate the modification said state legislative analysts.

Limiting and banning the use of smartphones is at the root of another school-affected legislation in 2020.

With the exception of emergencies or other special situations, such as medical reasons, school boards will have the power to ban devices.

Supporters say the use of smartphones is associated with lower student performance and interferes with schools ‘ educational purpose.