Schools Face Disciplinary Double Jeopardy Regulations

Some schools in Iowa face a problem when it comes to academic discipline and extracurricular activities. If a student gets below a certain grade level while participating in a competitive athletic or speech activity, they may face a suspension of up to thirty days while they try and get their grades up. However, some schools face the issue of a student being suspended from athletic participation for thirty days, then in the middle of that suspension, they are suspended from a drama or speech competition for an additional thirty days.

Currently the Iowa Legislature, in a bill proposed by State Senator Jake Chapman of Adel, is debating whether to make the code more uniform so that students only serve one suspension.

Forest City Community Schools generally do not have a disciplinary double jeopardy issue in athletics due to the way the semesters are scheduled according to Ken Baker from the school district.

The reason why speech and drama may pose an issue is due to scheduling, or a lack thereof.

If there is to be uniformity, the legislation may have to impose set schedules on both the drama and speech calendars, along with the athletic calendar.

The bill would have to had made it through what the Legislature calls “Funnel Week” in order to be considered by the full Senate and House this week and next.



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