AUSTIN (KXAN) — The Texas State University System (TSUS) in November changed its penalties for students who are found to have illegally possessed, used, sold or distributed drugs.
Before, if a student had one drug offense, whether it be on or off campus, they were subject to discipline ranging from mandatory counseling to expulsion. A second offense would have resulted in permanent expulsion from the student’s school and all other TSUS institutions.
Now, expulsion on the second offense has been scrubbed from the system’s policy, according to page 445 of this TSUS Board of Regents document. The change was reportedly solidified during the Nov. 17 Board of Regents meeting.
The document explained removing the mandatory second-offense expulsion gives student conduct officers discretion to determine the appropriate discipline on a case-by-case basis.
“This aligns with the sanctioning practice for drug related infractions with all other student rule infractions,” the TSUS document said.
This comes after a grassroots social justice publication, the Caldwell/Hays Examiner, said it sued Texas State University (TXST) in San Marcos over an Open Records Request to find out the race of students suspended and expelled due to marijuana infractions. The university is part of the TSUS.
The Caldwell/Hays Examiner claims in March, it requested those records from TXST but said the school refused to provide the information, citing students’ privacy.
When KXAN reached out to TXST for a response on the lawsuit in October, the university said it does not comment on active litigation.
Also, in the November election, nearly 82% of San Marcos voters approved decriminalizing marijuana possession within city limits. The measure decriminalizes possession of up to four ounces of marijuana inside of the city.