Linthacum on JCPS discipline issues, poverty

Jefferson City teachers have said in recent years they feared for their safety in the classroom because of unruly students.

Superintendent Larry Linthacum says officials have put a tighter focus on student discipline.

“These kids should know better,” Linthacum says. “But some may not know better, because if they grew up in poverty they may not know better. So that’s our job to work with parents.”

Linthacum says the poverty rate in the district has more than doubled, from 26 percent in 1995-96 to about 60 percent now. He adds the district is also working to raise the rate of minority teachers to better reflect the percentage of minority students in the district.

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