DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – Court has become a deterrent instead of detention for some North Texas students.
The social and economic group Texas Appleseed collected five years worth of data from 22 districts across the state and found young students, including a six year old in Dallas, who received class C misdemeanor tickets for things like disrupting class, leaving school early and school yard brawls that didn’t include weapons.
“Dallas ISD was one of the districts that had a very large number of elementary school students that were issued class C misdemeanors,” said Deborah Fowler, of Texas Appleseed.
Over the course of five years, more than 1200 elementary students in DISD received a ticket.
O.M. Roberts Elementary parent found Abby Amadore found that alarming. “It’s the (school district’s) job to help us as parents to help them determine what’s right from wrong. I don’t think it’s correct to give them a ticket at six years old,” said Amadore.
In 2006-2007, over 4,000 DISD students received tickets but one parents said depending on the student’s age it may not be a bad way to curtail persistent misbehavior.
“It just depends the age and what the student did,” said DISD parent Claudia Diaz.
Data shows the tickets can cost a family as much as $500.
DISD issued a statement on the report, saying “The district’s number one priority is safety and the learning environment should never be compromised. The vast majority of our students are not disruptive. Those who do receive tickets are hopefully learning that their actions have consequences.”