Vaping law causing surge in disciplinary cases for NEISD

Any student found in possession of vaping-related items will be issued a mandatory placement in an alternative education program, according to HB 114

North East ISD provided data for the 2022-2023 school year — 1,482 total discipline conferences with 666 related to THC. (KSAT)

One of San Antonio’s largest school districts is feeling the effects of a new law passed by Texas lawmakers.

In a statement to KSAT 12 News a representative with North East ISD, Aubrey Chancellor, explained its “Alternative Center evaluates the enrollment and projected enrollment on a daily basis. New enrollments and exiting enrolled students cause the enrollment to fluctuate regularly which on occasion have brought the total enrollment to capacity due to HB 114 e-cigarette offenses.”

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North East ISD data for the 2022-2023 school year showed there were 1,482 total discipline conferences, with 666 related to THC.

House Bill 114, authored by Pearland Rep. Ed Thompson, requires mandatory disciplinary action for vaping on school property, regardless of whether it involves THC.

KSAT 12 News spoke with Thompson in September about this potential problem districts were gearing up for.

“They have a district alternative education plan that they have to have for kids that, you know, that are caught with these vape pens. And their concern was the fact that that would be that program would be overrun. Now, we did give them some flexibility there that they could, you know, they could put a kid in ISS. You know, they could do some other things there, you know, depending upon, you know, again, the child, the circumstance,” Thompson said.

The NEISD spokesperson explained the district can return a student to their original campus from the alternative campus to complete their “placement term” for HB 114 e-cigarette offenses.

“Due to HB 114, e-cigarette offenses are now mandatory placements at DAEP and have caused an overall increase in placements,” Chancellor wrote.

About the Authors

Leigh Waldman is an investigative reporter at KSAT 12. She joined the station in 2021. Leigh comes to San Antonio from the Midwest after spending time at a station in Omaha, NE. After two winters there, she knew it was time to come home to Texas. When Leigh is not at work, she enjoys eating, playing with her dogs and spending time with family.

Todd Stricker is an Assignments Editor at KSAT, where he helps coordinate daily news coverage. He joined KSAT in 1993 as a photographer. He's covered everything from Dallas Cowboys games to hurricanes. He spent a full week helping lead Hurricane Harvey coverage. Todd has served as President and VP of the National Press Photographers Association.

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