Wednesday, March 19, 2008

School district releases information on expulsion

Express Staff Writer

The Blaine County School District has released additional information on the expulsion of a student last week by the district board of trustees.

Board Clerk Cathy Zaccardi said Thursday that the student was expelled from Wood River High School for one full year. The expulsion followed a formal expulsion hearing that the board conducted in closed executive session. Zaccardi declined to release additional information.

The new information is found in a synopsis of the March 11 board of trustees meeting released Friday. The synopsis reports that neither the student nor the student's parents attended the expulsion hearing, and that the only testimony was from an unnamed school administrator. The number assigned to the expelled student was "2007-08:2."

Not released was the student's age, grade or gender or the offense for which the student was expelled.

Zaccardi had earlier said that 70 percent of expulsions are for alcohol- or drug-related offenses, but has declined to specify the severity of the offenses, such as if the student was dealing drugs, under the influence of drugs or alcohol, or merely found in possession of over-the-counter cold or cough medicine.

The school board, which has expelled seven students thus far this school year, has come under recent criticism for its expulsion policies and for its reluctance to discuss the issue in detail with the public.

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