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Wichita, KS: "Dramatic" increase in discipline incidents

Aug 18, 2017, Wichita (KS) Eagle: 9 things to know about Wichita schools as another year kicks off http://www.kansas.com/news/local/education/article168007597.html 5. Behavior issues District leaders say improving student behavior is a top priority, after data showed that the number of suspensions, detentions and other discipline incidents increased substantially over the past four years. The trend is especially dramatic in elementary schools, where the number of discipline incidents increased more than 53 percent. ... 6. Teaching social-emotional skills Beginning this fall, all Wichita elementary school students will get daily lessons on social and emotional skills as part of Second Step. The district paid $238,000 for the program, which is being financed through funds targeted toward at-risk and special education students. During 20-minute lessons conducted by their classroom teacher, students in pre-kindergarten through fifth grade will talk about how to understand and manage their emotions, be aware of others’ feelings and make responsible decisions. Some secondary schools will pilot a Second Step program for older students. ...

7. Fidget spinners Toward the end of last school year, fidget spinners started appearing en masse in classrooms. ... Wichita district officials said there’s been no flat-out directive regarding fidget spinners, which originally were designed as a tool for students with attention deficit disorder or sensory issues. Rather, they let principals decide whether and how to manage the craze. ...