March 10, 2017 – The Houston Independent School District Board of Education on Thursday approved a proposal to establish an internal disciplinary alternative education program (DAEP) for secondary students for the 2017-2018 school year based on a timeline and benchmarks prepared by district administration.
Currently, the district’s DAEP services are provided to secondary students by Camelot Schools of Texas, LLC. The district’s contract with Camelot is set to expire on June 30.
“Thank you to Camelot,” said HISD Superintendent Richard Carranza, who had an opportunity to visit the Camelot facility this week. “There wasn’t one individual that I met that did not have the best of interest of our students in mind. But at the end of the day, these are our children. Every student will be educated in HISD by HISD teachers, principals, counselors, behavioralists, and support personnel.”
Bringing the program in-house would allow the district to align academic and behavioral interventions among campuses, improve transitional support for students between their enrolled school and the secondary DAEP, and improve efficiency by deploying DAEP staff members to secondary schools when the DAEP is not at capacity.
The proposal also is in line with the district’s efforts to ban suspensions and expulsions of elementary students. In 2016, HISD became the first school district in Texas to ban suspenions of young students.
“HISD is a different district,” Carranza said. “We have policies in place that prevent suspensions of our youngest students. We have restorative practices being implemented, behavioral support, and a positive climate. There is change happening at HISD. We are not about the school-to-prison pipeline. We are focused on ensuring that every student walks across the stage as a global graduate.”