Student and Family Support (SFS)

Rethinking Discipline Initiative

The Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education's (Department) goal is to assist in the reduction of inappropriate or excessive use of long-term suspension and expulsion, including disparate rates of suspension and expulsion for students with disabilities and/or for students of color. Since June 2016, the Department has worked with over 30 identified schools/districts to provide a range of supports including technical assistance and professional development opportunities through a Professional Learning Network. This web page outlines a number of Massachusetts specific and federal resources related to school climate and alternatives to discipline.

Student Discipline Resources and Information

Massachusetts Resources and Information

Problem Resolution System Case Studies — The Problem Resolution System (PRS) office will be publishing an ongoing series of case studies to illustrate particular aspects of compliance which would benefit from clarification or elaboration based on the results of our complaints investigations and findings. Please feel free to contact the PRS office if you have any questions regarding these materials at 781-338-3700 or at .

2021 – 2022 School Year Updates

2020 – 2021 School Year Updates

2019 – 2020 School Year Updates

2018 – 2019 School Year Updates

2017 – 2018 School Year Updates

2016 – 2017 School Year Updates

Federal Resources and Information

Alternative Approaches to Addressing School Climate

National Resources for Charter Schools

Last Updated: April 14, 2022

Contact Us

Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education
75 Pleasant Street, Malden, MA 02148-4906

Voice: (781) 338-3000
TTY: (800) 439-2370


Disclaimer: A reference in this website to any specific commercial products, processes, or services, or the use of any trade, firm, or corporation name is for the information and convenience of the public and does not constitute endorsement or recommendation by the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education.