The Colorado Senate approved a bill that overhauls school discipline policies and erases zero-tolerance rules adopted after the Columbine shootings.
The proposal passed Friday on a 32-3 vote. The House will now consider it.
Lawmakers say zero-tolerance policies force school districts to expel students or refer them to police for minor infractions, such accidentally bringing a toy gun to class. Under the bill, bringing a real firearm to school would still call for mandatory expulsions. But school districts would have more discretion over whether to refer students to police in other cases.
Opponents of the bill say they agree zero-tolerance policies are wrong. But they say the bill is too prescriptive and they're against requirements that school districts and local law enforcement to collect discipline data. Thy say that's an unfunded mandate.