As part of the Austin school district’s effort to reduce racial disparities in student discipline, Austin ISD’s new student code of conduct will remove long-term suspensions.

One of the district’s goals for the next five years is to decrease the percentage of Black students experiencing suspensions and discipline placements from 19% by August 2022 to a percentage commensurate to the district’s Black student population, according to the 2021-2022 District Strategic Action Plan.

About 7% of AISD’s student population was Black during the 2019-20 school year, according to data from the district. The district found that during that school year, Black students were roughly five times more likely than white students to receive disciplinary action, according to a June news release from the district.

The district also aims to reduce the disparity in special education student disciplinary actions from 2019-20's rate of 30.24% by August 2022.

The 2021-22 Student Code of Conduct updates include removing long-term suspensions and reducing both suspensions in and out of school from three to two days.

The district will also review monthly-campus discipline data.

The AISD board of trustees voted unanimously to approve the code of conduct during an Aug. 26 meeting.

Superintendent Stephanie Elizalde said the new code of conduct is not perfect but a step in the right direction.