State law encourages districts to use alternatives to out-of-school suspension or expulsion, such as in-school suspension, behavioral interventions, or restorative practices.
Code of Virginia § 22.1-16.6. Guidelines for alternatives to suspension.
The Board of Education shall establish guidelines for alternatives to short-term and long-term suspension for consideration by local school boards. Such alternatives may include positive behavior incentives, mediation, peer-to-peer counseling, community service, and other intervention alternatives.
Code of Virginia § 22.1-200.1. Optional education programs for kindergarten through grade five
In lieu of §§ 22.1-277, 22.1-277.07, and 22.1-277.08, a school board may establish optional age-appropriate education programs for young students in grades kindergarten through five who require guidance, supervision, and discipline in a structured learning environment and who need to be redirected toward appropriate classroom decorum and acceptable personal behavior. The programs shall provide instructional and support services that will enable students to maintain academic achievement, attain basic skills and academic proficiencies, and otherwise benefit from a public education during the time that they may be removed from the regular classroom. The programs shall also be designed to accommodate students within the school building to which they have been assigned, facilitate the efficient transition of students between the optional education program and their regular classroom, and provide for the continuity of instruction, a nurturing environment, necessary guidance and supervision, and the participation of the student's parents in correcting his behavior. Such programs shall be adequately staffed by licensed teachers or other persons with demonstrated qualifications to instruct and manage students with a range of academic gifts and deficiencies, disciplinary problems, and the need to develop and use appropriate social skills.
Model Guidance for Positive and Preventive Code of Student Conduct Policy
This document addresses use of non-punitive approaches as alternatives to exlusion or school removal