Several area districts to ban out-of-school suspensions for younger students

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NORMANDY, MO (KTVI)-Several school districts in the St. Louis area say they'll end out-of-school suspensions for their youngest students. Normandy is one of three school districts vowing to put an end to this disciplinary measure.

They are banning out-of-school suspensions for pre-school through third grade students, like those at Garfield Elementary School. The other two include Maplewood-Richmond Heights and the Ladue School District.

Some experts say suspending a student by putting them out of the learning environment, punishes the child but does not actually remedy the behavior. A study by UCLA last year showed Missouri had the highest racial disparity in school suspensions.

So instead, districts would rely on social workers, behavioral health specialists and other solutions.

St. Louis city public schools banned suspensions for pre-school through second grade students in early 2016. According to our partners at the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, more than a dozen others say they're looking at ways to address the issue as well.

Maplewood-Richmond Heights says the change will take place next school year.