Series: Series5000     Sub Series: 5000     Policy Number: 5020.1          Printer Friendly (opens in new window/tab)



Title 

SEXUAL HARASSMENT OF STUDENTS

Policy Text 

For pertinent information, refer to Policy 0110, Sexual Harassment.

 
District Reference  ,
 
General Reference 
 
 
Adoption Date 2002-06-25
 
Last Revised 



Series: Series5000     Sub Series: 5000     Policy Number: 5020.2          Printer Friendly (opens in new window/tab)



Title 

RACIAL HARASSMENT OF STUDENTS

Policy Text 

The Board of Education is committed to safeguarding the rights of all students within the school district to learn in an environment that is free from racial discrimination, including racial harassment. Racial harassment of students can originate from a person of the same or different race of the victim including peers, employees, Board members or any individual who foreseeably might come in contact with students on school grounds or at school-sponsored activities. The term "race" is used throughout this policy to refer to all forms of discrimination prohibited by Title VI - - that is, race, color, and national origin.

Racial harassment of students consists of different treatment on the basis of race and is recognized in two different forms:

1. when the district's employees or agents, acting within the scope of official duties, treat a student differently than other students solely on the basis of race; or

2. when the education environment is not kept free from discrimination because the harassing conduct is so severe, pervasive or persistent that it interferes with or limits the ability of a student to participate in or benefit from the services, activities or privileges provided.

The Board also prohibits any retaliatory behavior against complainants or any witnesses.

Any student who believes that he/she has been subject to racial harassment should report the alleged misconduct immediately so that corrective action, up to and including discharge of an employee or suspension of a student, may be taken at once. The complainant shall not be discouraged from reporting an incident of alleged racial harassment. In the absence of a victim's complaint, the Board, upon learning of, or having reason to suspect the occurrence of any racial harassment, will ensure that an investigation is promptly commenced by appropriate individuals.

The Superintendent of Schools is directed to develop and implement specific procedures on reporting, investigating and remedying allegations of racial harassment. Such procedures are to be consistent with any applicable provisions contained in the district's policy manual, collective bargaining agreements, the tenure laws as well as other federal and state laws on racial harassment. Training programs shall be established for students and employees to raise awareness of the issues surrounding racial harassment and to implement preventative measures to help reduce incidents of racial harassment.

A copy of this policy and its accompanying regulation is to be distributed to all personnel and students and posted in appropriate places.

 
District Reference  ,
 
General Reference 
 
 
Adoption Date 2002-06-11
 
Last Revised 



Series: Series5000     Sub Series: 5000     Policy Number: 5020.3          Printer Friendly (opens in new window/tab)



Title 

STUDENTS WITH DISABILITIES PURSUANT TO SECTION 504

Policy Text 

The Board of Education shall ensure that no student is discriminated against in programs or activities receiving federal financial assistance. Individuals protected by Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 are those individuals who: have a physical or mental impairment which substantially limits one or more major life activities (e.g. caring for one's self, performing manual tasks, walking, seeing, hearing, speaking, breathing, learning and working); have a record of such impairment; or are regarded as having such an impairment. Students who qualify for protection under Section 504 are: of an age during which non-disabled children are provided preschool, elementary or secondary education services; of an age during which it is mandatory under state law to provide such educational services to disabled children; or to whom a state is required to provide a free appropriate public education (e.g. under IDEA).

The Board shall identify, evaluate, refer, place, provide adaptations for and review all eligible students with disabilities. Students with disabilities pursuant to Section 504 shall be provided a free appropriate public education which may include, but is not limited to, providing a structured learning environment; repeating and simplifying instructions about in-class and homework assignments; supplementing verbal instructions with visual instructions; using behavioral management techniques; adjusting class schedules; modifying test delivery; using tape recorders, computer-aided instruction, and/or other audiovisual equipment; selecting modified textbooks or workbooks and tailoring homework assignments or modification of nonacademic times such as lunchroom, recess and physical education.

The district official responsible for coordination of activities relating to compliance with Section 504 is the Superintendent of Schools. The Superintendent shall provide information including complaint procedures to any person who feels his/her rights under Section 504 have been violated by the district or its officials.

 
District Reference  ,
 
General Reference 

Rehabilitation Act of 1973, 29 USC §§794 et seq. (Section 504) 
34 CFR Part 104
Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, 20 USC §§1400 et seq.
(IDEA)
Education Law, §§4401 et seq. (Article 89)
8 NYCRR Part 200

 
 
Adoption Date 2002-06-11
 
Last Revised 



Series: Series5000     Sub Series: 5100 STUDENT ATTENDANCE     Policy Number: 5100          Printer Friendly (opens in new window/tab)



Title 

COMPREHENSIVE STUDENT ATTENDANCE POLICY

Policy Text 

The Board of Education, in accordance with the state Education Law, requires that each minor regularly attend school full-time from the first day of session in September of the school year in which the minor becomes six years of age through the last day of the school year in which such minor becomes 16 years of age, unless  he/she has completed a four-year high school course of study.  He/She may attend a school other than a public school or receive home instruction, provided the instruction is equivalent to that given in the public schools.

 

It shall be the responsibility of the Superintendent of Schools to prepare and the Board to enact appropriate rules and regulations to monitor the attendance of all children below the age of 16 and those above 16 but less than 18 who have chosen to work full time but are unemployed. Such rules shall include a provision to contact the home at the start of a period of unexcused absence, and establish minimum attendance requirements.

 

 

COMPULSORY ATTENDANCE AGE

 

All children are required by law to attend school full time, from the first day of session in September of the school year in which the minor becomes six years of age through the last day of the school year in which such minor becomes 16 years of age, unless he/she has completed a four-year high school course of study.  A minor who has completed a four-year high school course of study is not required to attend.

 

Students exceeding the compulsory attendance age may withdraw from school with or without parental consent. However, every effort shall be made to involve parents in such a serious decision.

 

Children who reach their fifth birthday on or before December 1st of the year of matriculation will be admitted to kindergarten.  Proof of age must be presented in the form of a birth certificate, baptismal certificate, or passport.

 

All students over five years of age and under 21 who do not possess a high school diploma are entitled to attend public school in the district where he or she resides.

 

MAINTENANCE OF ATTENDANCE RECORDS

 

            In accordance with state law and regulations, it is the policy of the Rhinebeck Central School District to ensure the maintenance of adequate attendance records verifying the attendance of all children at instruction and the creation of the means to examine attendance patterns so as to develop effective intervention strategies to improve student attendance.

 

            It is the objective of this policy to encourage each student to attend school on time for the maximum number of days and instructional periods possible.  In furtherance of this objective, the District shall utilize strategies such as positive attendance incentives and appropriate disciplinary and other consequences, as well as the integration of attendance standards for the purposes of conferral of course credit.

 

Attendance records will be maintained by the school secretaries for grades K-6 and the attendance clerk for grades 6-12 on a daily basis. District-wide attendance reporting and accounting will be done by the Superintendent’s secretary.

 

Any student absent from school for reasons other than a school-authorized activity, shall bring a dated excuse, verified by a parent’s or a guardian’s signature, upon the student’s return to school.

 

            School officials shall be diligent in their efforts to correct persistent patterns of illegal/unexcused absence on the part of students.

 

I.          Record Keeping

 

A.        Effective no later than July 1, 2003, attendance record keeping shall conform to the following:

 

            1.         As a non-departmentalized K-5 school, Chancellor Livingston Elementary School shall have attendance taken once each day.

 

            2.         As schools with departmentalized grades, Bulkeley Middle School and Rhinebeck High School shall have attendance taken in each period of scheduled instruction, with an exception for consecutive periods where classes are in the same room.

           

            3.         In Grades K-12, any absence for a school day or part of a school day shall be recorded as excused or unexcused as provided for in this policy.

 

            4.         In Grades 6-12, events of tardiness shall be recorded as excused or unexcused as provided for in this policy.

 

            5.         In Grades K-12, events of late arrival or early departure shall be recorded as excused or unexcused as provided for in this policy.

 

            6.         A record shall be maintained of each scheduled day of instruction during which school is closed for all or part of the day because of extraordinary circumstances including adverse weather, failure of the heating system or water supply, fuel supply shortage or structural damage to the building, etc.

 

            7.         A record shall be made of the date when a student withdraws from enrollment or is dropped from enrollment in accordance with §3202(3-a) of the Education Law.

 

B.                 All entries in the register of attendance shall be made by a teacher or another employee designated by the Board of Education.  Any individual authorized

to make entries in the register of attendance shall, by oath or affirmation, verify the contents of the entries.

 

C.                 The register of attendance shall consist of any written or electronic record to

record attendance, absence, tardiness or early departure of a student.  The

register shall be maintained for every period that a student is scheduled to attend actual instruction or supervised study during the course of the school day during the school year, from July 1st through June 30th.  The register at every school building shall include separate notations regarding student presence, absence, tardiness and early departure.  The contents of the register for each student shall contain the information prescribed in regulations of the Commissioner of Education (Part 104).

 

D.                 The coding system shall incorporate the following: CC for class cut (unexcused); TE for excused tardy; TR for truant (unexcused); HT for home tutoring (positive); SV for school visitation (excused); DR for doctor or dentist appointment (excused); SU for suspended (positive); FT for field trip (positive); ISA for in-school activity (excused); ILL for illness (excused); CS for community service (excused); CT for court date (excused); DF for death in the family (excused); AT for action taken (positive); TDY for unexcused tardy; UNX for unexcused; SE for school event (excused); EXC for excused; N/R for note without legal reason (unexcused); JS for job shadow (excused); and UNV for unverified absence.      

 

II.        Excused and Unexcused Absences

 

            The Board recognizes the following as excused student absences, each of which must be verified by the student’s parent/guardian or school personnel, where applicable:

 

            1.         Personal illness

            2.         Illness or death in the immediate family

            3.         Religious observance

            4.         Required attendance in court

            5.         Approved school-sponsored activities, including field trips, interscholastic athletics, musical and other competitions

            6.         Directed or authorized presence at the Administrative Offices or Nurse’s Office.

            7.         Quarantine

            8.         Dental and medical appointments

            9.         Military obligations                                                                   

            10.       Approved cooperative/work study program

            11.       College visitations only for juniors and seniors, with the prior knowledge and approval of parents and counselors, so long as it does not exceed 4 days in a school year.

12.              Unsafe travel conditions

 

            Any absence not provided for on the excused list shall be deemed an unexcused absence.

 

            The Board strongly discourages parents from taking their children out of school for the purpose of a family trip or vacation.  If such a situation is unavoidable, parents should provide advance notice to the main office staff.  All work must be completed within a reasonable period of time upon the child’s return, as determined by the teacher.

 

            Students in grades 6-12 may be excused from daily instructional requirements

during designated Regents days.  Attendance need not be taken on a Regents examination day.  However, regents days will be counted toward fulfilling the minimum 180 required days of instruction for the year.   

 

            Each absence must be accounted for.  It is the parent’s/guardian’s responsibility to notify the office on the morning of an absence.  It is essential that parents/guardians provide a written excuse for each absence. Such excuse should contain the reason and date of absence.  The written excuse must be presented by the student on the day when returning to school following such absence. 

 

III.       Student Absenteeism

Educational research indicates that regular class attendance is highly correlated with academic success.  There is no educational substitute for high quality teacher-student interaction in a classroom environment.  From time to time, students may be absent from school due to illness, family obligations, and so on.  It is the responsibility of the secondary school student to keep up with any work or instruction missed.  In the event that students display chronic absences from school, the following provisions will be adhered to.

The following provisions and definitions will apply for this policy:

A. Students who are more than fifteen minutes late for a class will be considered absent from the class.

B. Students will not be counted as absent for the following reasons:

1. External suspension

2. In-school suspension    

3. Long-term illness when the school has arranged for the student’s

    educational needs (i.e. home tutoring)

 4. A student on a field trip will receive positive attendance for the entire

    day.

Attendance interventions

Before a student is absent nine (9) days in a semester course, or nineteen (19) days in a full year course, or when a student exhibits a pattern of unexcused absences or tardiness,  the building administrator or his/her designee will meet with the student and discuss measures that can be taken to improve attendance. Also at this time, a letter will be sent to the parent(s)/guardian(s) with a notification of these absences and concern regarding academic achievement. The building administrator or his/her designee will also make contact with the parent(s)/guardian(s) by telephone or in person at a meeting scheduled for this purpose and will document this contact.

Such efforts to improve attendance may include but not be limited to:

• Discussions with the student’s teacher or teachers.

• Discussions and/or meetings with the student and his/her parent(s)/ guardian(s).

• Discussions with the student’s guidance counselor or the Assistant Principal

• Permanent or temporary suspension of extra-and co-curricular activity privileges, including but not limited to athletics, clubs meetings and activities, and dances

•Permanent or temporary suspension of early dismissal, late arrival, or open campus privileges

•Reassignment to academic study halls

 

IV. Encouraging Student Attendance

A. With the approval of the Building Administration, in consultation with guidance services, teachers at the elementary level shall utilize attendance incentives (addressing not only attendance but also tardiness and early departure as well), including recognition of students with good attendance and commendation certificates issued to the student’s parent(s)/guardian(s).

B.  At the middle school and high school levels, class cutting shall be deemed an infraction of the Code of Conduct in the nature of insubordination to the teacher and school administration. The Code shall prescribe a range of disciplinary interventions to address class cutting.

C. In the event that the school level interventions have not improved the student’s attendance, the Principal may recommend interventions such as a Person In Need of Supervision (PINS) petition to the Family Court and/or contact with the appropriate social services agency to initiate a neglect petition.

 

V.        Oversight Responsibilities

 

A.        The Building Principal and/or his/her administrative designee shall be responsible for reviewing student attendance records and initiating appropriate action consistent with this policy.

 

B.         The Board of Education shall annually review building level student attendance records to determine if the comprehensive student attendance policy is effective.  If a decline in attendance is evident, the Board shall revise the policy as deemed necessary to improve student attendance.

 

VI.       Distribution of Policy

 

The Superintendent of Schools, at the direction of the Board of Education, shall publish to the community information about the District’s Comprehensive Student Attendance Policy.  The policy shall be available and explained at student assemblies, at assemblies on open school nights (if any), and a plain language summary of the policy shall be prepared for distribution to parents/guardians.  Each teacher and new teacher(s), promptly upon hire, shall be provided with a copy of the policy and any amendments thereto.  Copies of the policy shall also be maintained by the District’s Records Access Officer for issuance upon request by any interested party.

 
District Reference  ,
 
General Reference 

Education Law §§1709; 1711; 1712; 2503; 2514; 2555; 3201; 3202(1-a); 3205-3213; 3024; 3225; 3202(1-a) 8 NYCRR §101; §175.6; Family Court Act §§711 et seq.

 
 
Adoption Date 2002-06-25
 
Last Revised 2010-06-22



Series: Series5000     Sub Series: 5100 STUDENT ATTENDANCE     Policy Number: 5120          Printer Friendly (opens in new window/tab)



Title 

SCHOOL CENSUS

Policy Text 

Pursuant to the Education Law, every two years a school census will be taken which will include all minors between birth and 18 years of age and those with disabilities, from birth until the age of 21.

Special notation will be made of those residents with disabilities under the age of 21, in order that the register of such residents may be revised annually by the CSE as required by law.

 
District Reference  ,
 
General Reference 

Education §§3212, 3240 et. seq. 
8 NYCRR §200.2 

 
 
Adoption Date 2002-06-11
 
Last Revised 



Series: Series5000     Sub Series: 5100 STUDENT ATTENDANCE     Policy Number: 5150          Printer Friendly (opens in new window/tab)



Title 

SCREENING OF NEW SCHOOL ENTRANTS

Policy Text 

The Board of Education shall provide for the screening of every new entrant to school for disability, giftedness, and/or limited English proficiency. Such screening shall include, but not be limited to a physical examination, including proof of immunization as required by law; and a language development assessment.

Parents of children to be screened shall receive information in advance regarding the purpose of screening, the areas to be screened, and the referral process. This information shall be communicated either verbally or in writing in the parents’ primary language.

Parents have the right to request information regarding their child’s performance during screening. All information collected through the screening program will be subject to the provisions of the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA). Parents shall be informed of their right to privacy, their right to access to the records, and their right to challenge those records should they be inaccurate, misleading, or otherwise inappropriate.

If such screening indicates a possible disability, a referral shall be made to either the CPSE or CSE and reported to the Superintendent of Schools. In cases of a child’s possible giftedness, parents shall be notified in writing. Such notice, however, will not entitle the child to receive services for the gifted. Parents of a child who has been designated as limited English proficient (LEP) shall be informed by school authorities of the student’s placement in an instructional program.

 
District Reference  ,
 
General Reference 

Education Law §§903; 904; 3202; 3208; 4452(1)(e) 
Public Health Law §2164
8 NYCRR §117

 
 
Adoption Date 2002-06-11
 
Last Revised 



Series: Series5000     Sub Series: 5100 STUDENT ATTENDANCE     Policy Number: 5151          Printer Friendly (opens in new window/tab)



Title 

HOMELESS CHILDREN AND YOUTH

Policy Text 

Families may lose their housing for a variety of reasons, including high housing costs and economic circumstances. Young people also may leave their homes due to abuse, neglect, and family conflict. Children and youth who have lost their housing live in a variety of places, including motels, shelters, shared residences, transitional housing programs, cars, campgrounds, and others locations. Their lack of permanent housing can lead to potentially serious physical, emotional, and mental consequences. The Rhinebeck Central School District will ensure that all children and youth, including those that are homeless, receive a free appropriate public education and are given meaningful opportunities to succeed in our schools, according to the requirements of the McKinney-Vento Act.

Pursuant to Commissioner’s Regulations, a "homeless child" means a child or youth who lacks a fixed, regular, and adequate nighttime residence, including a child or youth who:

  • is sharing the housing of other persons temporarily due to a loss of housing, economic hardship, or a similar reason;
  • is living in motels, hotels, trailer parks or camping grounds due to the lack of alternative adequate accommodations;
  • is abandoned in a hospital;
  • is awaiting foster care placement;
  • is a migratory child who qualifies as homeless in accordance with Commissioner’s Regulations;
  • has a primary nighttime location that is:
  1. a supervised, publicly or privately operated shelter designed to provide temporary living accommodations including, but not limited to, shelters operated or approved by the state or local department of social services and residential programs for runaway and homeless youth; or
  2. a public or private place not designed for, or ordinarily used as, a regular sleeping accommodation for human beings, including a child or youth who is living in a car, park, public space, abandoned building, substandard housing, bus or train station or similar setting.
  • is considered an unaccompanied youth, i.e. a homeless child (for whom no parent or person in parental relation is available) or youth not in the physical custody of a parent or legal guardian, and not a child or youth who is residing with someone other than a parent or legal guardian for the sole reason of taking advantage of the schools of the district.

A "homeless child" shall not include a child in foster care or receiving educational services pursuant to Sections 3202(4), (5), (6), (6a), or (7) or Articles 81, 85, 87, or 88 of the Education Law.

Under federal law, homeless children and youth must have access to an appropriate public education and be given full opportunity to meet state and local academic achievement standards. They must be included in state- and district-wide assessments and accountability systems and will be free from discrimination, segregation, and harassment.

Enrollment of homeless children shall not be delayed and their ability to continue or participate in the educational program shall not be restricted due to issues such as transportation; immunization requirements; residency requirements; birth certificates, medical records, individualized education programs, school records and other documentation; guardianship issues; comprehensive assessment and advocacy referral processes; resolution of disputes regarding school selection; proof of social security numbers; attendance requirements; sports participation rules; inability to pay fees associated with extracurricular activities such as club dues and sports uniforms; or other enrollment issues.

The District will immediately enroll homeless children and youth, even if the records normally required for enrollment (including medical examinations and immunizations) are not available at the time of enrollment. After the student is enrolled, the Homeless Liaison will immediately make a written request to the school district where the homeless student’s records are maintained for a copy of such records and, if needed, will also assist the homeless student to obtain immunizations. The school district shall provide homeless children and youth with access to all of its programs, activities, and services to the same extent that they are provided to resident students. Homeless children and youth shall be educated as part of the school’s regular academic program. Services must be provided to homeless children and youth through programs and mechanisms that integrate homeless children and youth with their non-homeless counterparts.

All children identified as homeless are eligible for free meals if offered in the School District without the necessity of completing an application.

Upon enrollment, a student residency questionnaire and information regarding the McKinney-Vento Act will be distributed to the appropriate persons. Pupil personnel staff will be sensitive to the possible needs of students who might seek to withdraw from school, and information will be posted in each school. The Department of Social Services will be contacted to determine if they have contact with homeless families who live in the district so that they can be given opportunities as afforded by the McKinney-Vento Act.

Transportation Responsibilities

A social services agency is responsible for providing transportation to homeless children who are eligible for benefits under Social Services Law §350-j and placed in temporary housing arrangements outside their designated districts.

The Office of Children and Family Services ("OCFS") must provide transportation for each homeless child who lives in a residential program for runaway youth and homeless youth located outside of the designated school district. The social services district or OCFS may contract with a school district or board of cooperative educational services ("BOCES") to provide such transportation. Any homeless child not entitled to receive transportation from the Department of Social Services or OCFS must be transported by the designated school district.

When the school district of the student’s current location is designated as the school district the homeless child will attend, that school district must provide transportation to the homeless child on the same basis as it is provided to resident students. If the homeless child attends the school district of origin or a school district participating in a regional placement plan, then that school district must provide transportation to and from the homeless child’s temporary housing and school.

Homeless children are entitled to transportation even if a school district does not provide transportation to non-homeless students, even if traveling across district boundaries, and during any disputes regarding school selection and enrollment. Parents may be also entitled to transportation if the student is unable to travel alone. A designated school district that must provide transportation to a homeless child may not provide transportation in excess of 50 miles one way, unless the Commissioner determines that it is in the best interest of the child.

Dispute Resolution

The District will implement the following procedures for the prompt resolution of disputes regarding school selection or enrollment of a homeless child or youth:

  • Provide a written explanation, including a statement regarding the right to appeal to the homeless child's or youth's parent or guardian, if the school district declines to either enroll and/or transport such child or youth to the school of origin or a school requested by the parent or guardian.
  • Delay for 30 days the implementation of a final determination to decline to either enroll in and/or transport the homeless child or youth or unaccompanied youth to the school of origin or a school requested by the parent or guardian of a homeless child or youth or unaccompanied youth if the parent or guardian of a homeless child or youth or unaccompanied youth commences an appeal to the Commissioner with a stay application within 30 days of such final determination.
  • Permit the homeless child or youth to continue to attend the school he or she is enrolled in at the time of the appeal until the Commissioner renders a decision on the stay application.
  • If the Commissioner grants the stay request and issues a stay order, the homeless child or youth or unaccompanied youth can continue attending the school until the Commissioner issues an appeal decision. However, if the Commissioner denies the stay request, the homeless child or youth or unaccompanied youth can be asked to leave the school immediately. If the Commissioner sustains the appeal, the homeless child or youth or unaccompanied youth can continue attending the school at issue. However, if the Commissioner dismisses the appeal, the homeless child or youth or unaccompanied youth can be asked to leave the school immediately

School District Liaison for Homeless Children and Youth

The School District shall designate an appropriate staff person as the liaison for homeless children and youth ("homeless liaison") to carry out the duties set forth in law, Commissioner’s Regulations and applicable federal and state guidance documents. The homeless liaison shall serve as one of the primary contacts between homeless families and school staff, local service providers, shelter workers and advocates and shall coordinate services to ensure that homeless children and youth enroll in school and have the opportunity to succeed academically.

Records and Reporting Requirements

If the School District, as the school district of origin, receives a request to forward student records to a receiving district, the records must be forwarded within five days.

 

The School District shall maintain documentation regarding all aspects of the School District’s contact with and services provided to homeless students and youth and provide such documents to the State Education Department upon request.

 
District Reference  ,
 
General Reference 
 
 
Adoption Date 2012-02-14
 
Last Revised 



Series: Series5000     Sub Series: 5100 STUDENT ATTENDANCE     Policy Number: 5152          Printer Friendly (opens in new window/tab)



Title 

RESIDENCY AND ADMISSION OF NON-RESIDENT STUDENTS

Policy Text 

The Board of Education has as its primary responsibility the provision of the best possible educational opportunities for the children who are legal district residents and who are of legal age to attend school.

Residency Defined

Generally, a student’ s legal school district residence is presumed to be that of his or her parents or legal guardian. Legal guardianship is defined by proper submittal of a notarized “affidavit of legal responsibility” submitted through the party’s attorney.

A student above the age of 17 living on his/her own, and not receiving financial support from his/her parent/guardian, shall be considered a resident student.

A child living in the district solely for the purpose of attending school within the district will not be considered a resident student.

In the event of parents moving to adjacent districts, students should move to their new school in a timely manner. In general, their stay should not exceed the quarter in which they are currently enrolled in the district’s schools.

Non-Resident Students

A non-resident student may be admitted to district schools upon payment to the district of the Board-adopted tuition charge, if and only if, in the judgment of the Superintendent of Schools:

1. there is sufficient space to accommodate the non-resident student;

2. they do not constitute a burden on class size or teacher load, as determined by the building principal

3. the non-resident student meets the district's criteria for admission; and

4. the admission of such non-resident student is and continues during the enrollment period to be in the best interests of the district.

5. the district has an appropriate educational placement within the district for the non-resident student

Any such request for admission of non-resident students must be made to the building principal in a timely manner. It should be clearly understood that the transportation of non-resident students to and from school is the sole responsibility of the student’s parent/guardian.

In order to help with child care situations, the district will also consider the tuition-free enrollment of an employee’s children who do not live in the district subject to the conditions stated above for the admission of non-resident students in general. However, transportation in support of child care arrangements may be provided at the discretion of the Superintendent to an employee’s non-resident children attending the district’s schools. Such transportation may be provided within the boundaries of the district only, to and from any of the district’s schools and a child care location within the district. However, such transportation may be provided only if the child care location is at an established transportation pick-up point on an established transportation route for the specific bus run in question.

Future Residents

The children of families who have signed a contract to buy, build or rent a residence in the school district may be enrolled during the semester in which they expect to become residents, without payment of tuition.

 
District Reference  ,
 
General Reference 

Education Law §3202
Appeal of Kehoe, 37 EDR 14 (1997)

 
 
Adoption Date 2002-06-25
 
Last Revised 



Series: Series5000     Sub Series: 5100 STUDENT ATTENDANCE     Policy Number: 5152.1          Printer Friendly (opens in new window/tab)



Title 

ADMISSION OF FOREIGN STUDENTS

Policy Text 

Only non-immigrant foreign students who possess a valid J-1 or F-1 visa to study in the United States may be admitted to the district's high school. The Board retains the sole discretion to deny admission to any student not meeting all the requirements set forth in this policy.

Foreign Exchange Students (J-1 Visa)

The Board encourages district participation in a foreign exchange student program. Foreign exchange students will be admitted to the district high school for a one-year academic program.

1. The district recognizes only those organizations designated as “Exchange-Visitor Programs” by the United States Information Agency, pursuant to federal regulations, as sponsoring organizations for the exchange of students. Any such organization must supply proof of designation prior to recognition.

2. No foreign exchange students subject to this policy and regulation shall be brought into the district by a foreign exchange student program unless he or she has been accepted in writing as a student by the high school Building Principal or a designee.

3. Foreign exchange students will be allowed to attend school and will be provided bus transportation to and from school free of charge. When a foreign exchange student is accepted for admission pursuant to this policy and regulation the letter of acceptance shall include a statement that tuition shall be waived for the student.

4. The district will accept no more than five foreign exchange students per school from any single foreign exchange program.

The Board may terminate the approval of a foreign student program when it would be in the best interests of the district to do so.

Foreign Students with F-1 Visas

No F-1 students will be admitted into grades K-8. F-1 students may be admitted to the high school for one academic year upon the payment of tuition. The amount of tuition charged shall reflect the full, unsubsidized per capita cost of providing educational services to the student.

Immigrant Students

All school-aged immigrant children who have abandoned their residence in a foreign country and established residence in the district will be admitted to the district's schools without payment of tuition.

 
District Reference  ,
 
General Reference 

22 CFR Part 514, Exchange-Visitor Program 
Education Law §1709(13)
Matter of Jones, 24 EDR 110 (1984)

 
 
Adoption Date 2002-06-11
 
Last Revised 



Series: Series5000     Sub Series: 5100 STUDENT ATTENDANCE     Policy Number: 5154          Printer Friendly (opens in new window/tab)



Title 

ASSIGNMENT OF STUDENTS TO CLASSES

Policy Text 

It is the responsibility of the administration to assign students to specific classes to most effectively implement the educational program consistent with the philosophy and values of the total school community.

 
District Reference  ,
 
General Reference 

Education Law §§1709, 2503(4); 3202 

 
 
Adoption Date 2002-06-11
 
Last Revised 



Series: Series5000     Sub Series: 5100 STUDENT ATTENDANCE     Policy Number: 5155          Printer Friendly (opens in new window/tab)



Title 

STUDENT WITHDRAWAL FROM SCHOOL

Policy Text 

Before a student may be dropped from enrollment, he/she must have been absent for 20 consecutive school days and statutory procedures must be followed. The option to leave public school instruction is open to students at the end of the school year during which they reach the age of 16. However, before the student is withdrawn from school, the following steps shall be followed:

1. Every effort shall be made to provide a program of instruction which meets the needs and interest of the student.

2. The Dean of Students shall schedule and notify in writing both the student and his/her parents or guardians of an informal conference.

3. A parent conference with the Dean of Students, the student’s guidance counselor, and others who may have a direct interest in the student’s plans will be held to be sure that all profitable avenues for retaining the student have been explored.

4. If withdrawal seems the most desirable course of action, the proper withdrawal form shall be completed, signed by the Building Principal and parent, and forwarded to the Superintendent of Schools. The student and his/her parents shall be informed orally and in writing of the student's right to re-enroll at any time in the school, if qualified under law.

5. Students withdraw from school after the year during which they reach their sixteenth birthday until contact has been made with the student’s parent or guardian establishing their knowledge of the requested withdrawal.

6. Parent contact is desirable in cases of 18 year-old student withdrawals; however, it is not mandated.

7. If the student or his/her parents fail after reasonable notice to attend the informal conference, the student will be dropped from the rolls of the school, provided that he or she and the parents have been notified that they may re-enter at any time if qualified under the law.

 
District Reference  ,
 
General Reference 

Education Law §3202(1-a)

 
 
Adoption Date 2002-06-11
 
Last Revised 



Series: Series5000     Sub Series: 5100 STUDENT ATTENDANCE     Policy Number: 5161          Printer Friendly (opens in new window/tab)



Title 

TRUANCY AND TARDINESS

Policy Text 

Chronic tardiness and truancy are disruptive to both teachers and fellow students and therefore will not be tolerated.

Tardiness, whether the fault of the child or the parent, cannot be excused except for the reasons cited in policy 5100. A note from parents explaining the cause of lateness is required. Students arriving late to school will be expected to sign-in at the Attendance Office.

 
District Reference  ,
 
General Reference 
 
 
Adoption Date 2002-06-11
 
Last Revised 



Series: Series5000     Sub Series: 5100 STUDENT ATTENDANCE     Policy Number: 5162          Printer Friendly (opens in new window/tab)



Title 

STUDENT DISMISSAL PRECAUTIONS

Policy Text 

No student may be released from school to anyone other than the parent, guardian or child protective services personnel and law enforcement officers pursuant to law, unless the name of the individual seeking release of the student appears on a list provided by the parent or guardian. Students 16 years of age or older may be released from school on their own with the advance receipt by the building principal or his/her designee of written permission from the student’s parent/guardian.

Parents are urged to make appointments with physicians, dentists, special tutors, etc., after school hours. If a request is necessary, parents should make note of the date, time and reason for the release. Children cannot be excused without advanced written request by parent/guardian, and must be released in care of parent/guardian, unless otherwise noted.

A student may be released to either parent unless a custodial parent supplies the Superintendent of Schools with a certified copy of a court order or divorce decree to the contrary.

The Superintendent shall develop procedures to enable parents and guardians to amend the list of persons authorized to obtain the release of their children.

 
District Reference  ,
 
General Reference 

Education Law §3210(1)(c) 

 
 
Adoption Date 2002-06-11
 
Last Revised 



Series: Series5000     Sub Series: 5100 STUDENT ATTENDANCE     Policy Number: 5182          Printer Friendly (opens in new window/tab)



Title 

RELEASED TIME FOR RELIGIOUS INSTRUCTION

Policy Text 

Students will be released for religious instruction upon proper request from parents for a maximum of one hour each week. Such instruction shall not be held in any public school building.

 
District Reference  ,
 
General Reference 

8 NYCRR §109.2 
Zorach v. Clauson, 343 U.S. 306 (1952) 

 
 
Adoption Date 2002-06-11
 
Last Revised 



Series: Series5000     Sub Series: 5200 CO-CURRICULAR AND EXTRACURRICULAR ACTIVITIES     Policy Number: 5200          Printer Friendly (opens in new window/tab)



Title 

COCURRICULAR AND EXTRACURRICULAR ACTIVITIES

Policy Text 

The Board of Education will assign staff for the formation of student groups for such purposes as building social relationships, developing interests in academic and/or athletic areas, and gaining an understanding of the elements and responsibilities of good citizenship.

Recognizing that student activities are a part of the school program, the Board has established the following criteria, which all student activity programs must meet:

1. student activities must have educational value for students;

2. student activities must be in balance with other curricular offerings in the schools; and

3. student activities must be managed in a professional manner.

The following guidelines will govern student activities programs:

1. student activities are those school activities that are voluntarily engaged in by students, have the approval of the school administration and do not carry credit toward promotion or graduation;

2. each school, under the direction of the Building Principal, will have a well-balanced and effectively administered student activity program designed to stimulate student growth and development by supplementing and enriching the curricular activities;

3. each activity should be designed to contribute directly to the educational, civic, social and/or ethical development of students involved;

4. the student activity program should receive the same attention in terms of philosophy, objectives, social setting, organization and evaluation that is given the regular school curriculum;

5. each school will develop definite written guidelines and procedures regulating the creation, organization, administration and dissolution of student activity programs;

6. the expenses involved in participating in any student activity and in the total program for a school year should be set so that a majority of the students may participate without financial strain;

7. activities must be open to all students, regardless of race, religion, sex, national origin, marital status, disability or other human differences;

8. activities must not place undue burdens upon students, teachers or schools;

9. activities should be scheduled at a time that does not adversely impact the instructional program; and

10. activities at any level should be unique, not duplications of others already in operation.

 
District Reference  ,
 
General Reference 
 
 
Adoption Date 2002-06-11
 
Last Revised 



Series: Series5000     Sub Series: 5200 CO-CURRICULAR AND EXTRACURRICULAR ACTIVITIES     Policy Number: 5210          Printer Friendly (opens in new window/tab)



Title 

STUDENT ORGANIZATIONS

Policy Text 

The Superintendent of Schools is charged with developing procedures for registering and regulating student groups or clubs.  Such procedures shall ensure that the district will register any group organized for a purpose not prohibited by Board policy or by law, if such group submits a list of its members designated as contacts, a copy of its constitution and/or bylaws, and the constitution and bylaws of any off-campus organization with which it may be affiliated.  At the discretion of the Board of Education, the Board may require student groups or clubs to fully or partially self-fund.  Funding sources may include, but are not limited to, the school district, booster clubs, and/or private individuals, at the discretion of the Board of Education. 

 

Student groups may not restrict membership on the basis of race, sex, national origin or other arbitrary criteria.  The Board may prohibit the formation of any clubs, including fraternities or sororities, or any other secret society, whose deliberations and activities have caused or created, or are likely to cause or create, a disruption of or interference with the school program.  The Board also may set a minimum number of students for participation in student groups or clubs, and may restrict the total number of clubs if, in the Board’s judgement, the burden on district resources, financial or otherwise, is too great.

 

Administrative regulations governing the use of school facilities shall abide by the Equal Access Act in the creation of a "limited open forum."  All noncurricula-related student activities, regardless of religious or political con­tent, shall have the same opportunities as any other such activity to operate on school grounds.

 
District Reference  ,
 
General Reference 

Education Law §§207; 1709-a; 2503-a; 2554-a 
Equal Access Act, 20 U.S.C. §§4071-4074
8 NYCRR Part 172
Board of Education of the Westside Community Schools v. Mergens, 496 U.S. 226 (1990)
Garnett By Smith v. Renton School Dist. No. 403, 865 F.2d 1121 (9th Cir., 1989)
Thompson v. Waynesboro Area School Dist., 673 F.Sup¬p. 1379 (M.D. Pa. 1987)
Student Coalition v. Lower Merion School Dist. Bd., 633 F.Supp. 1040 (E.D. Pa. 1986)
Tinker v. Des Moines Independent Community School Dist., 393 U.S. 503, 89 S.Ct. 733 (1969)
Healy v. James, 408 U.S. 169, 92 S.Ct. 2338 (1972)

 
 
Adoption Date 2003-05-13
 
Last Revised 



Series: Series5000     Sub Series: 5200 CO-CURRICULAR AND EXTRACURRICULAR ACTIVITIES     Policy Number: 5220          Printer Friendly (opens in new window/tab)



Title 

STUDENT PUBLICATIONS

Policy Text 

School-sponsored student publications shall be under the control and supervision of the Building Principal or designated faculty representative. All material published in school-sponsored publications must have the prior approval of the faculty sponsor.

Students, through the various mass media, are exposed to diverse opinions on an infinite number of topics. Students who have facts and opinions should be allowed to express them in print as well as through conversation. However, student editors and writers must observe the same legal responsibilities as those imposed upon conventional newspapers and news media. All student publications will comply with the rules for responsible journalism. Libelous statements, unfounded charges and accusations, obscenity, false statements, materials advocating racial or religious prejudice, hatred, violence, the breaking of laws and school policies and/or regulations, or materials designed to disrupt the educational process will not be permitted. Thus, no student shall distribute in any school any school publication which:

1. is obscene as to minors according to current legal definitions;

2. is libelous according to current legal definitions; or

3. creates a material and substantial disruption of the normal school activity or appropriate discipline in the operation of the school.

Expressions of personal opinion must be clearly identified as such, and bear the name of the author. Opportunity for the expression of opinions differing from those of the student publishers must be provided.

The High School Newspaper

The high school newspaper, while it is a student newspaper, directed and edited by students, is usually regarded by the public at large as representative of the school district as a whole. The newspaper, therefore, will never be used to advance a selfish interest of any group or clique of students and/or faculty; or to attack individuals or groups. In addition, the rules stated above for student publications in general shall apply to the high school newspaper.

Students shall understand that the high school newspaper is in no way a freelance publication. They shall recognize the Board and the school administration as the publisher and that, in the final analysis, the responsibility for the proper conduct of the school newspaper rests with the publisher.

Students shall also understand that the newspaper editor and staff occupy positions which possess the power to injure individuals and institutions and that their actions at all times will be conditioned by restraint, a strong sense of responsibility, and an extreme care for accuracy.

In all editorials, in-depth stories, signed letters and other newspaper articles which may be considered for publication in the school newspaper, the following guidelines will apply:

1. All pertinent, available facts that can be produced from all sources must be obtained before anything is written or published.

2. If all the facts cannot be gathered in time to meet a publication’s deadline, the editorial, in-depth story, signed letter, or other article will be held until such time as that information can be obtained or the copy will not be published at all.

3. The question of the appropriateness of the time to write or publish the above mentioned articles will be thoughtfully and carefully considered. Counsel will be sought from the advisor and/or school officials involved in each case.

Distribution of Literature

Students have a right to distribute literature on school grounds and in school buildings provided such distribution does not interfere with or disrupt the educational process. No literature may be distributed unless a copy is submitted and approved for distribution in advance to the Building Principal.

The Principal shall establish guidelines that are in keeping with the above and shall provide for the review of the content of all student publications prior to their distribution.

 
District Reference  ,
 
General Reference 

Hazelwood School District v. Kuhlmeier, 484 US 260, 108 S Ct 562 (1988) 
Bethel School District v. Fraser, 478 US 675 (1986)
Tinker v. DesMoines Independent Community School Dist., 393 US 503, (1969)
Thomas v. Board of Education, Granville Central School Dist., 607 F 2d 1043 (1979)
Trachtman v. Anker, et al., 563 F 2d 512 (1977)
Eisner v. Stamford Board of Education, 314 F Supp 832, modf'd. 440 F2d 803 (1971)
Frasca v. Andrew et al., 463 F Supp 1043 (1979)
Matter of Beil and Scariati, 26 EDR 109(1986) 

 
 
Adoption Date 2002-06-11
 
Last Revised 



Series: Series5000     Sub Series: 5200 CO-CURRICULAR AND EXTRACURRICULAR ACTIVITIES     Policy Number: 5230          Printer Friendly (opens in new window/tab)



Title 

SCHOOL DANCES

Policy Text 

School dances are not public events. Only students of the school sponsoring the dance and their guests are allowed to attend. A student may invite one non-school guest but is responsible for his/her guest at all times. Students must register a guest in the main office at least 24 hours before the dance.

Middle school dances are two hours in length. No one will be admitted after the first hour without prior permission from the principal. Students are not allowed to leave the dance early, unless accompanied by a parent/guardian or other responsible adult.

No one will be allowed to enter high school dances later than two hours after they begin unless prior arrangements have been made with the principal or the advisor of the group sponsoring the dance. There will be no readmittance to a high school dance. That is, after a student leaves the building, he/she will not be allowed to return.

 
District Reference  ,
 
General Reference 
 
 
Adoption Date 2002-06-11
 
Last Revised 



Series: Series5000     Sub Series: 5200 CO-CURRICULAR AND EXTRACURRICULAR ACTIVITIES     Policy Number: 5240          Printer Friendly (opens in new window/tab)



Title 

PUBLIC PERFORMANCES BY STUDENTS

Policy Text 

The following rules apply to public performances by students:

1. The public performance must contribute to the accomplishment of curricular objectives, must not unduly interfere with other scheduled activities or classes within the school, and must be approved by the Superintendent of Schools.

2. The continual use of the same group shall be discouraged.

3. Students participating in a performance shall conduct themselves in a manner appropriate for their age and in such a way as to bring credit to their school.

4. Student organizations may participate in the activities of patriotic and civic groups in the community if the time of participation does not unduly interfere with the students’ scheduled instructional program.

5. Caution will be used to avoid exploitation in the use of musical performances to further public relations of particular institutions or for local political rallies. However, the Board believes that the organization may be used to honor the position represented by certain high public offices or to honor visiting dignitaries to our community.

6. Students may not perform for any compensation in any school-connected public performance.

 
District Reference  ,
 
General Reference 
 
 
Adoption Date 2002-06-11
 
Last Revised 



Series: Series5000     Sub Series: 5200 CO-CURRICULAR AND EXTRACURRICULAR ACTIVITIES     Policy Number: 5251          Printer Friendly (opens in new window/tab)



Title 

STUDENT FUND RAISING ACTIVITIES

Policy Text 

All student fund raising activities shall be authorized in advance by the Building Principal.

 
District Reference  ,
 
General Reference 
 
 
Adoption Date 2002-06-11
 
Last Revised 



Series: Series5000     Sub Series: 5200 CO-CURRICULAR AND EXTRACURRICULAR ACTIVITIES     Policy Number: 5252          Printer Friendly (opens in new window/tab)



Title 

STUDENT ACTIVITIES FUNDS MANAGEMENT

Policy Text 

The Board of Education is responsible for the protection and supervision of the financial affairs of student clubs and extracurricular activities. The Principal of each school concerned will designate a competent, qualified faculty advisor for each club or organization, to be appointed by the Board of Education. The faculty advisor shall, as part of his/her duties, supervise the financial affairs of the club or organization. An audit of all accounts will be made annually by the school auditor.

 
District Reference  ,
 
General Reference 

Education Law §207 
8 NYCRR Part 172

 
 
Adoption Date 2002-06-11
 
Last Revised 



Series: Series5000     Sub Series: 5200 CO-CURRICULAR AND EXTRACURRICULAR ACTIVITIES     Policy Number: 5260          Printer Friendly (opens in new window/tab)



Title 

STUDENT CONTESTS

Policy Text 

The Board of Education will not endorse contests sponsored by outside organizations involving district students which require student time during the school day for the preparation of posters, essays, speeches, etc.

This policy does not restrict students from entering contests on their own initiative. However, the student should make it clear that he/she is entering the contest as an individual and that the school district is not sponsoring his/her entry.

 
District Reference  ,
 
General Reference 
 
 
Adoption Date 2002-06-11
 
Last Revised 



Series: Series5000     Sub Series: 5000     Policy Number: 5280          Printer Friendly (opens in new window/tab)



Title 

INTERSCHOLASTIC ATHLETICS

Policy Text 

It is the objective of the Board of Education that parity will exist and be maintained within the district’s interscholastic athletic program in terms of the number and kind of sports activities for girls and boys.

 

The interscholastic athletic program has been designed to enhance the educational experience of our students. Sports involvement provides student athletes with the opportunity to develop physically, mentally, and emotionally.  The personal characteristics of physical fitness, athletic skill, leadership, discipline, self-esteem, loyalty, cooperation, motivation, sense of fair play, and the development of long term friendships are promoted by participation in athletics.  The objective of the Rhinebeck interscholastic athletic program is to complement the objectives and policies of the school in the development of well-rounded individuals who are capable of taking their place in today’s society.

 

The individual sports in the interscholastic athletic program are competitive in nature. Most sports in the athletic program have three levels of competition, Modified, Junior Varsity, and Varsity, as student interest and other factors allow.

 

Modified sports are designed for students in grades 7 and 8. The emphasis at the Modified Level is on participation while learning the necessary skills to compete at more advanced levels. Exceptional athletes in the 7th and 8th grade may try out for teams at the JV or Varsity level after successfully completing the “Athletic Placement Process” (APP), as outlined by the New York State Education Department for that particular sport. The Athletic Placement Process (APP) should only be used for “exceptional athletes,” typically athletes who are expected by the coach to start and to play a majority of each game due to their skills and abilities. The Athletic Placement Process will not be implemented to fill out roster spots. Regardless of the reason, the Athletic Placement Process will be implemented at the sole discretion of the school district.

 

Junior Varsity sports are, for the most part, for students in 9th and 10th grades. 11th graders may be allowed to play JV sports, and 12th graders are only allowed to participate at the JV level under certain circumstances and with the advance permission of the Mid-Hudson Athletic League. Here the emphasis is on fine-tuning sport-specific skills and on participation. Varsity level teams are generally for 11th and 12th grade students, and selection for these teams is based on skill and performance. At the Varsity level, there is a particularly strong emphasis on competitive play.

 

Each program shall be designed in a manner that is similar to our academic curriculum. The knowledge and skills needed to be successful on the Varsity level should be used to establish the skills and knowledge developed at the JV and Modified Levels.  It is desirable that those who wish to participate are given every opportunity to do so, but where fiscal or sport limitations play a part in determining squad size, the basic criteria for team membership shall be athletic skill.

 

During the try-out process, coaches will evaluate players based on their skills and their knowledge of the game, as well as their character, coachability, work ethic, and commitment, and will select team members based upon those criteria. To the maximum extent possible, coaches shall adhere to the stated goals, principles and philosophy of the interscholastic athletic program in effect at the time. Coaches may not use a potential player’s participation or non-participation in a private club or team, in a private off-season or pre-season camp, and/or in a private training program as a selection criterion for membership and/or participation on an athletic team.     

 

The following guidelines shall be used in implementing this policy:

  1.  Individual sports within the interscholastic athletic program may be financed through donations by booster organizations as deemed necessary by the Board of Education.
  2. Eligibility rules adopted by the Board of Education shall apply (see Policy 5305, Eligibility for Extracurricular Activities)
  3. Parents shall sign a permission slip for their children to participate in interscholastic athletics.
  4. Every precaution should be taken to protect the health of the individual student. Each participant must have a physical examination. Every injury should be reported immediately to the coach who in turn should report it to the athletic trainer, to the nurse, and to the parent, as soon as practicable, preferably the same day. The parent is responsible for follow-up treatment of injuries. District policy specifically addresses concussions and head injuries, which are the most commonly reported injuries in children and adolescents who participate in sports and can have serious consequences if not managed carefully. However, following an absence from participation for any injury, the student must have a doctor’s signed statement authorizing his/her return to participation.
  5. Students should be supervised at all times. Coaches should see to it that students have left locker rooms and the building after practices.

Coaches are responsible for administering the athletic program for their teams, ensuring the safety of student athletes, caring and accounting for school property, working closely and harmoniously with fellow coaches and teachers, remaining current in best coaching practices, game strategies and tactics, and rules changes, using positive and encouraging motivational strategies to inspire and support student athletes, and modeling good sportsmanship and appropriate behavior on and off the field or court.

 

Parents can best support the program by encouraging their children to participate fully and to enjoy the competitive experience, by modeling good sportsmanship and appropriate behavior as spectators before, during, and after athletic competitions, and by supporting the decisions of the coaches, administrators, and other members of the school staff in connection with the district interscholastic athletic program.

 
District Reference  ,
 
General Reference 

Education Law §§1709 (8-a); 3001-b 
8 NYCRR §135.4 

 
 
Adoption Date 2002-06-11
 
Last Revised 2015-07-28



Series: Series5000     Sub Series: 5000     Policy Number: 5300          Printer Friendly (opens in new window/tab)



Title 

DISTRICT CODE OF CONDUCT

Policy Text 

I.  Introduction

The Rhinebeck Central School District Board of Education (“Board”) is committed to providing a safe and orderly school environment where students may receive and district personnel may deliver quality educational services without disruption or interference.  Responsible behavior by students, teachers, other district personnel, parents and other visitors is essential to achieving this goal.

This commitment is consistent with the District’s mission, vision and core values. The mission is to provide an excellent learning environment and the dedicated development of every student’s generosity of spirit, passion for learning, and ultimate success.  The vision is educating students to become ethical decision-makers, self-directed learners, complex thinkers, collaborative workers, quality producers, and community contributors.  This aligns with the District’s core values of Safety and Health, Resources, Respect, Responsibility, Courage, Integrity, the Whole Child, Collaboration, Student Achievement, and Recognition as the hallmarks of a quality education.

The District has a long-standing set of expectations for conduct on school property and at school functions. These expectations are based on the principles of civility, mutual respect, citizenship, character, tolerance, honesty and integrity.

 

The board recognizes the need to clearly define these expectations for acceptable conduct on school property, to identify the possible consequences of unacceptable conduct, and to ensure that discipline when necessary is administered promptly and fairly. To this end, the Board adopts this code of conduct (“code”).

 

Unless otherwise indicated, this code applies to all students, school personnel, parents and other visitors when on school property or attending a school function.

While there are formal disciplinary procedures in place, it is critical that parents and educators realize the importance of communication and positive relationships in resolving discipline issues.  The formal discipline process is often unnecessary when parents, educators, and students have an opportunity to develop cooperative partnerships. Collaborative discussions of this type often lead to creative and student-specific solutions that support appropriate behavior and educational achievement.  If parents or school officials believe that a student’s placement is not appropriate, they should work together to recommend an appropriate change.  Collaborative and cooperative partnerships between parents, educators, and students are more likely to result in a change that will meet the needs of the student, ensure improved learning opportunities, and create a safe environment.

 

     The following key points from the publication Safeguarding Our Children: An Action Guide (Dwyer, K. and Osher, D, 2000) highlights certain principles that research or expert-based experience demonstrate to have a significant impact on the success of prevention and intervention plans for students with behavior problems.

 

Principles Underlying Behavior Intervention 

  • Share responsibility by establishing a partnership with the child, school, home, and community
  • Communicate with parents when early warning signs are observed. Parents should be involved as soon as possible
  • Maintain confidentiality and parents’ rights to privacy
  • Develop the capacity of staff, students, and families to intervene
  • Support students in being responsible for their actions
  • Make interventions available as early as possible
  • Use sustained, multiple, coordinated interventions. It is rare that children are disruptive only in school
  • Analyze the contexts in which behavior problems occur
  • Build upon and coordinate internal school resources


II. Definitions

 For purposes of this code, the following legal definitions apply:

 “Disruptive student” means an elementary or secondary student under the age of 21 who is substantially disruptive of the educational process or substantially interferes with the teacher’s authority over the classroom.

 “Parent” means parent, guardian or person in parental relation to a student.

 “School property” means in or within any building, structure, athletic playing field, playground, parking lot or land contained within the real property boundary line of a public elementary or secondary school, or in or on a school bus, as defined in Vehicle and Traffic Law §142.

 “School function” means any school-sponsored trip, extra-curricular event, or activity.

 “Violent student” means a student under the age of 21 who:

  1. Commits an act of violence upon a school employee, or attempts to do so.
  2. Commits, while on school property or at a school function, an act of violence upon another student or any other person lawfully on school property or at the school function, or attempts to do so.
  3. Possesses, while on school property or at a school function, a weapon.
  4. Displays, while on school property or at a school function, what appears to be a weapon.
  5. Threatens, while on school property or at a school function, to use a weapon.
  6. Knowingly and intentionally damages or destroys the personal property of any school employee or any person lawfully on school property or at a school function.
  7. Knowingly and intentionally damages or destroys school district property.

 

 “Weapon” means a firearm as defined in 18 USC §921 for purposes of the Gun-Free Schools Act. It also means any other gun, BB gun, pistol, revolver, shotgun, rifle, machine gun, disguised gun, paintball gun, pocket knife, dagger, dirk, razor, stiletto, switchblade knife, gravity knife, brass knuckles, sling shot, metal knuckle knife, box cutter, cane sword, electronic dart gun, Kung Fu star, electronic stun gun, pepper spray or other noxious spray, explosive or incendiary bomb, or other device, instrument, material or substance that can cause physical injury or death when used to cause physical injury or death.

 

III.  Student Rights and Responsibilities

A.  Student Rights

The District is committed to safeguarding the rights given to all students under state and federal law. In addition, to promote a safe, healthy, orderly and civil school environment, all district students have the right to:

  1. Take part in all district activities on an equal basis regardless of race, color, creed, national origin, religion, gender or sexual orientation or disability.
  2. Present their version of the relevant events to school personnel authorized to impose a disciplinary penalty in connection with the imposition of the penalty.
  3. Access school rules and, when necessary, receive an explanation of those rules from school personnel.
  4. Due process, as defined by applicable law.

B.  Student Responsibilities

All district students have the responsibility to:

  1. Contribute to maintaining a safe and orderly school environment that is conducive to learning and to show respect to other persons and to property.
  2. Be familiar with and abide by all district policies, rules and regulations dealing with student conduct.
  3. Attend school every day unless they are legally excused and be in class, on time, and prepared to learn.
  4. Work to the best of their ability in all academic and extracurricular pursuits and strive toward their highest level of achievement possible.
  5. React to direction given by teachers, administrators and other school personnel in a respectful, positive manner.
  6. Work to develop the social behaviors necessary to interact with others in a positive manner.
  7. Ask questions when they do not understand.
  8. Seek help in solving problems that might lead to discipline.
  9. Dress appropriately for school and school functions.
  10. Accept responsibility for their actions.
  11. Conduct themselves as representatives of the district when participating in or attending school-sponsored extracurricular events and to hold themselves to the highest standards of conduct, demeanor, and sportsmanship.
  12. Students may find themselves in the unique situation of possessing information that could be potentially dangerous to themselves or others. They should report any and all situations or suspicions about harmful acts to other students, to their teachers, or to other school personnel.  All suspicions should be immediately reported.  The identities of students who report such situations or suspicions will be kept confidential by school authorities until legally required to do otherwise.

   

 

IV.  Essential Partners

A.  Parents

  1. Recognize that the education of their child(ren) is a joint responsibility of the parents and the school community.
  2. Send their children to school ready to participate and learn.
  3. Ensure their children attend school regularly and on time.
  4. Ensure that absences are excused and provide a written explanation for each absence to school authorities.
  5. Insist their children be dressed and groomed in a manner consistent with the student dress code.
  6. Help their children understand that in a democratic society appropriate rules are required to maintain a safe, orderly environment.
  7. Know school rules and help their children understand them.
  8. Convey to their children a supportive attitude toward education and the district.
  9. Build good relationships with school officials, teachers, other parents and their children’s friends.
  10. Help their children deal effectively with peer pressure.
  11. Inform school officials of changes in the home situation that may affect student conduct or performance.
  12. Provide a place for study and ensure homework assignments are completed.

B.  Teachers

  1. Lead by example in adhering to the code of conduct.
  2. Maintain a climate of mutual respect and dignity, which will strengthen students’ self-concept and promote confidence to learn.
  3. Be prepared to teach.
  4. Demonstrate interest in teaching and concern for student achievement.
  5. Know school policies and rules, and enforce them in a fair and consistent manner.
  6. Communicate to students and parents:
  7. Course objectives and requirements
  8. Marking/grading procedures
  9. Assignment deadlines
  10. Expectations for students
  11. Classroom discipline plan.
  12. Communicate regularly with students, parents and other teachers concerning growth and achievement.

C. Other School Staff 

  1. Lead by example in adhering to the code of conduct.
  2. Maintain a climate of mutual respect and dignity, which will strengthen students’ self-concept and promote confidence to learn.
  3. Know school policies and rules, and enforce them in a fair and consistent manner.
  4. Promote a safe and orderly school environment. 

D.    School Counselors

  1. Lead by example in adhering to the code of conduct.
  2. Maintain a climate of mutual respect and dignity, which will strengthen students’ self-concept and promote confidence to learn.
  3. Assist students in coping with peer pressure and emerging personal, social and emotional problems.
  4. Initiate teacher/student/counselor conferences and parent/teacher/student/ counselor conferences, as necessary, as a way to resolve problems.
  5. Regularly review with students their educational progress and career plans.
  6. Provide information to assist students with career planning.
  7. Encourage students to benefit from the curriculum and extracurricular programs.

E. Building Administrators (Principals and Assistant Principal)

  1. Lead by example in adhering to the code of conduct.
  2. Maintain a climate of mutual respect and dignity, which will strengthen students’ self-concept and promote confidence to learn.
  1. Promote a safe, orderly and stimulating school environment, supporting active teaching and learning.
  2. Ensure that students and staff have the opportunity to communicate regularly with the building administrator and approach the building administrator for redress of grievances.
  3. Evaluate on a regular basis all instructional programs.
  4. Support the development of and student participation in appropriate extracurricular activities.
  5. Be responsible for enforcing the code of conduct within the designated parameters and ensuring that all cases are resolved promptly and fairly.

F.   Superintendent

  1. Lead by example in adhering to the code of conduct.
  2. Maintain a climate of mutual respect and dignity, which will strengthen students’ self-concept and promote confidence to learn.
  3. Promote a safe, orderly and stimulating school environment, supporting active teaching and learning.
  4. Review with district administrators the policies of the board of education and state and federal laws relating to school operations and management.
  5. Inform the board about educational trends relating to student discipline.
  6. Work to create instructional programs that minimize problems of misconduct and are sensitive to student and teacher needs.
  7. Work with district administrators in enforcing the code of conduct and ensuring that all cases are resolved promptly and fairly.

 G. Board of Education 

  1. Lead by example in adhering to the code of conduct and in conducting board meetings in a professional, respectful, courteous manner.
  2. Maintain a climate of mutual respect and dignity, which will strengthen students’ self-concept and promote confidence to learn.
  3. Collaborate with student, teacher, administrator, and parent organizations, school safety personnel and other school personnel to develop a code of conduct that clearly defines expectations for the conduct of students, district personnel and visitors on school property and at school functions.
  4. Adopt and review at least annually the district’s code of conduct to evaluate the code’s effectiveness and the fairness and consistency of its implementation.

 

V.  Student Dress Code

 

Individual students and parents have the responsibility for student dress and general appearance.  Students are required to attend school in appropriate attire that also meets health and safety standards and does not interfere with the educational process.  Clothing that contains sexual innuendo, that glorifies or promotes drug, alcohol, or tobacco use, or violence, and/or is otherwise materially disruptive to the learning environment, as determined by the building principal or his/her designee, is prohibited.

 

Students are required to wear appropriate protective gear in certain classes (i.e. home and careers, technology, P.E.), as directed by the teacher. All undergarments must be covered, and apparel should be respectful of the student and of others in school, on school grounds, and at school activities, Furthermore, a student’s attire should not create, or be reasonably anticipated to create, a material disruption to the learning environment, as determined by the building principal or his/her designee.

 

Hats, clothing, attire and other articles which have an expression (phrase, word or words) or insignia (picture, symbol, patch, or pin) which is obscene, sexually suggestive, or libelous (that is, which contains objectionable language, including insults, whether directed to themselves or others), or which advocates racial, religious, gender, age, disability, or sexual orientation prejudice is forbidden. Hats and coats may be worn in the hallways.  However, individual teachers may prohibit students from wearing hats or coats in the classroom.  Appropriate footwear must be worn.  Footwear that is a safety hazard, in terms of walking and/or participating in specific activities, will not be allowed.

 

If found wearing such attire, the student will be required to change clothes prior to returning to class. Any student who repeatedly fails to comply with the dress code shall be subject to further discipline.

 

VI.  Prohibited Student Conduct

 

The Board of Education expects all students to conduct themselves in an appropriate and civil manner, with proper regard for the rights and welfare of other students, district personnel and other members of the school community, and for the care of school facilities and equipment.

 

The best discipline is self-imposed, and students must learn to assume and accept responsibility for their own behavior, as well as the consequences of their misbehavior. District personnel who interact with students are expected to use disciplinary action only when necessary and to place emphasis on the students’ ability to grow in self-discipline.

 

The Board recognizes the need to make its expectations for student conduct while on school property or engaged in a school function specific and clear. The rules of conduct listed below are intended to do that and focus on safety and respect for the rights and property of others. Students who will not accept responsibility for their own behavior and who violate these school rules will be required to accept the penalties for their conduct.

Students may be subject to disciplinary action, up to and including suspension from school, when they:

A.  Engage in conduct that is disorderly. Examples of disorderly conduct include:

  1. Running in hallways.
  2. Making unreasonable noise.
  3. Using language or gestures that are profane, lewd, vulgar or abusive.
  4. Obstructing vehicular or pedestrian traffic, or reckless driving.
  5. Engaging in any willful act which disrupts the normal operation of the school community.
  6. Trespassing - Students are not permitted in any school building, other than the one they regularly attend, without permission from the administrator in charge of the building.
  7. Trespassing - Students are not permitted to be in any unauthorized area of any school building without permission from the administrator in charge of the building.
  8. Computer/electronic communications misuse, including any unauthorized use of computers, software, or internet/intranet account; accessing inappropriate web sites; or any other violation of the district’s acceptable use policy.

B.  Engage in conduct that is insubordinate. Examples of insubordinate conduct include:

  1. Failing to comply with the reasonable directions of teachers, school administrators or other school employees in charge of students or otherwise demonstrating disrespect.
  2. Lateness for, missing or leaving school without permission.
  3. Skipping detention.

C.  Engage in conduct that is disruptive. Examples of disruptive conduct include:

  1. Failing to comply with the reasonable directions of teachers, school administrators or other school personnel in charge of students.
  2. Interrupting or interfering with the orderly conduct of classes, school programs or school activities.

D.  Engage in conduct that is violent. Examples of violent conduct include:

  1. Committing or threatening an act of violence (such as hitting, kicking, pushing, shoving, wrestling, punching, spitting and scratching) upon a teacher, administrator or other school employee or attempting to do so.
  2. Committing or threatening an act of violence (such as hitting, kicking, punching, spitting and scratching) upon another student or any other person lawfully on school property or attempting to do so.
  3. Possessing a weapon. Authorized law enforcement officials are the only persons permitted to have a weapon in their possession while on school property or at a school function.
  4. Displaying what appears to be a weapon.
  5. Threatening to use any weapon.
  6. Intentionally damaging or destroying the personal property of a student, teacher, administrator, other district employee or any person lawfully on school property, including graffiti or arson.
  7. Intentionally damaging or destroying school district property.

E.  Engage in any conduct that endangers the safety, morals, health or welfare of others. Examples of such conduct include:

  1. Lying to school personnel.
  2. Conspiring to violate the Code of Conduct.
  3. Stealing the property of other students, school personnel or any other person lawfully on school property or attending a school function.
  4. Defaming, which includes making false or unprivileged statements or representations about an individual or identifiable group of individuals that harm the reputation of the person or the identifiable group by demeaning them.
  5. Discriminating, which includes the use of race, color, creed, national origin, religion, gender or sexual orientation (refer to BOE Policy 0120) or disability as a basis for treating another in a negative manner.
  6. Bullying, including cyberbullying (refer to section IX of this policy), and harassment, sexual (refer to BOE Policy 0120) or otherwise (refer to section IX of this policy), which involves a sufficiently severe action or a persistent, pervasive pattern of actions or statements directed at an identifiable individual or group which are intended to be, or which a reasonable person would perceive as, ridiculing or demeaning.
  7. Intimidation (refer to section IX of this policy), which includes engaging in actions or statements that put an individual in fear of bodily harm.
  8. Hazing (refer to section IX of this policy ), which includes any intentional or reckless act directed against another for the purpose of initiation into, affiliating with or maintaining membership in any school sponsored activity, organization, club or team.
  9. Selling, using, displaying or possessing obscene material, including but not limited to the sending or receiving of sexually explicit messages or photographs, primarily between mobile phones or other electronic devices.
  10. Using vulgar or abusive language or gestures, cursing or swearing.
  11. Smoking and/or possessing a cigarette, cigar, pipe or using chewing or smokeless tobacco, or possessing/using an e-cigarette/vaping.
  12. Possessing, consuming, selling, distributing or exchanging alcoholic beverages or illegal substances, being under the influence thereof, or possessing drug paraphernalia. “Illegal substances” include, but are not limited to, inhalants, marijuana, cocaine, LSD, PCP, amphetamines, heroin, steroids and other performance enhancing substances, look-alike drugs, and any substances commonly referred to as “designer drug.”
  13. Inappropriately using, selling, or sharing prescription and over-the-counter drugs.
  14. Using and/or displaying all forms of radios, walkman-style tape, CD, or DVD players, audio and/or video recorders, laptop computers, external speakers, pagers, digital music players, cell phones/smartphones/smartwatches (including, but not limited to, talking, text messaging, message playing, ring-tone playing, game playing, music playing, audio recording, picture taking and video taking), electronic games, and similar items during school hours. These have been determined to be a potential disruption to the school learning process.  Using and/or displaying these items during school hours is generally prohibited in school, with the following exceptions: 
    1. Music players with a headset are permitted to be used by high school students only in a scheduled high school lounge, in the high school hallways, during a scheduled lunch period in the high school cafeteria, or by K-12 students on District transportation.
    2. Cell phones/smartphones/smartwatches are permitted to be used by high school students only in a scheduled high school lounge or during a scheduled lunch period in the high school cafeteria, by middle school and high school students in the classroom for academic purposes upon the teacher’s express prior permission, or by K-12 students on District transportation
    3. Listening to music with a headset in high school and middle school classrooms only with the prior approval of the teacher.
    4. Using personal laptop computers in high school and middle school classrooms only with the prior approval of the building principal or his/her designee.
    5. Electronic games and other digital devices with age-appropriate content are permitted to be used by K-12 students on District transportation. Digital content that includes sexual innuendo, that glorifies or promotes drug, alcohol, tobacco use, or violence, that is offensive to, or disrespectful of the privacy of, other students, and that is materially disruptive, is not permitted to be used thereupon. Use of digital media on District transportation must be personal and individual, and not be unwillingly shared with others on the bus.
    6. No recording, broadcasting, and/or playback equipment or materials, including but not limited to video recorders, cameras, cell phone/smartphone cameras, tape recorders, or videophones, are permitted to be used in school, on school grounds, and/or at school events without prior teacher or administrator approval. No recording, broadcasting, and/or playback equipment or materials, including but not limited to video recorders, cameras, cell phone cameras, tape recorders, or videophones, are permitted to be used in school, on school grounds, and/or at school events without prior teacher or administrator approval.  Such use includes, but is not limited to, the uploading, on-line posting, texting, and/or any other form of sharing of such content with one or more individuals, through any current or future method, medium or technology. In the event that such prohibited equipment is used or is used in a way that is prohibited, a teacher or any other member of the staff will see that the recording equipment, including content if applicable, is turned in to the main office and kept there until the end of the day.  Repeated incidents, or possession of recording equipment containing content, will require a parent conference in order to retrieve the confiscated items. The District reserves the right to confiscate and retain equipment that is reasonably suspected of having been used to record, to receive and/or to transmit visual or auditory content that might be a violation of law, for review and determination by law enforcement officials.
    7. Per State Education Department guidelines, students are prohibited from bringing cell phones/smartphones and certain other electronic devices into a classroom or other location where a State examination is being administered.  In addition, students are prohibited from bringing cell phones/smartphones and certain other electronic devices into a classroom or other location where a local final exam is being administered.  Test proctors, test monitors, and school officials shall retain the right to collect and hold any prohibited electronic devices prior to the start of the test administration.
  15. Using skateboards, roller skates, in-line skates, scooters or other similar items recreationally in school or on school grounds. In the interest of personal and traffic safety, using these items is prohibited in school and on school grounds at all times. In the event that such prohibited items are used, a teacher or any other member of the staff will see that the items are turned in to the main office and kept there until the end of the day.  Repeated incidents will require a parent conference in order to retrieve the confiscated items.
  16. Gambling.
  17. Demonstrating public displays of affection beyond handholding that are otherwise materially disruptive to the learning environment, as determined by the building principal or his/her designee.
  18. Indecent exposure, that is, exposure to sight of the private parts of the body in a lewd or indecent manner.
  19. Initiating a report warning of fire or other catastrophe without valid cause, misuse of 911, or discharging a fire extinguisher.

F.  Engage in misconduct while on a school bus. It is crucial for students to behave appropriately while riding on district buses to ensure their safety and that of other passengers and to avoid distracting the bus driver. Students are required to conduct themselves on the bus in a manner consistent with established standards for classroom behavior. Excessive noise, pushing, shoving and fighting will not be tolerated.

G.  Engage in any form of academic misconduct. Examples of academic misconduct include:

  1. Plagiarism.
  2. Cheating.
  3. Copying.
  4. Altering records.
  5. Computer or electronic communications misuse.
  6. Assisting another student in any of the above actions.

H.  Engage in conduct that is committed off school premises or at non-school sponsored activities to the extent that the Superintendent of  Schools and/or the Board of Education believes that the continued attendance in school of the student would constitute an endangerment to the health, safety, welfare or morals of the students and/or others in the schools.  

 

VII.  Reporting Violations

 

We live in a time when we must pay increased attention to the conversations that our children have with us and with their friends.  This includes all conversations and comments that mention or imply the threat of physical harm to an individual or a group. These remarks should be immediately reported to an appropriate adult, i.e. a parent and/or a teacher and, ultimately, to a school official.  It is important that students, parents, and staff understand that any threat of violence, even one seemingly made jokingly or in a casual manner, is a cause for concern and will be treated seriously by Rhinebeck school authorities.

 

In addition, all students are expected to promptly report other violations of the code of conduct to a teacher, guidance counselor, the assistant principal, the building principal or his or her designee. Any student observing a student possessing a weapon, alcohol or illegal substance on school property or at a school function shall report this information immediately to a teacher, the assistant principal, the building principal, the principal’s designee or the superintendent.

                                                                                                           

All district staff who are authorized to impose disciplinary sanctions are expected to do so in a prompt, fair and lawful manner. District staff who are not authorized to impose disciplinary sanctions are expected to promptly report violations of the code of conduct to their supervisor, who shall in turn impose an appropriate disciplinary sanction, if so authorized, or refer the matter to a staff member who is authorized to impose an appropriate sanction.

 

Any weapon, tobacco product, alcohol or illegal substance found shall be confiscated immediately, if possible, followed by notification to the parent of the student involved and the appropriate disciplinary sanction if warranted, which may include permanent suspension and referral for prosecution.

 

The building principal or his or her designee must notify the appropriate local law enforcement agency of those code violations that constitute a crime and substantially affect the order or security of a school as soon as practical, but in no event later than the close of business the day the principal or his or her designee learns of the violation. The notification may be made by telephone, followed by a letter to the contacted law enforcement agency. The notification must identify the student and explain the conduct that violated the code of conduct and constituted a crime.

 

Notification of these types of code violations will be communicated to the building staff on a need-to-know basis, in consideration of the confidentiality rights of the student who violated the code of conduct.

 

VIII.       Disciplinary Interventions, Consequences, Procedures, and Referrals

     

When addressing student behaviors that may impede learning, school personnel should consider a range of positive supports, strategies, and interventions before removals and suspensions.  Discipline policies, practices, and behavioral intervention plans should include a variety of interventions.  These may include addressing a student’s motivation, social skills, and problem-solving abilities, and using positive reinforcement and logical consequences.

 

Discipline is most effective when it deals directly with the problem at the time and place it occurs, and in a way that students view as fair and impartial. School personnel who interact with students are expected to use disciplinary action only when necessary and to place emphasis on the students’ ability to grow in self-discipline.

 

Disciplinary action, when necessary, will be firm, fair and consistent so as to be the most effective in changing student behavior. In determining the appropriate disciplinary action, school personnel authorized to impose disciplinary penalties will consider the following:

  1. The student’s age.
  2. The nature of the offense and the circumstances which led to the offense.
  3. The student’s prior disciplinary record.
  4. The effectiveness of other forms of discipline.
  5. Information from parents, teachers and/or others, as appropriate.
  6. Other extenuating circumstances.

 

As a general rule, discipline will be progressive. This means that a student’s first violation will usually merit a lighter penalty than subsequent violations.

 

If the conduct of a student is related to a disability or suspected disability under IDEA, Article 89, and the Part 200 Regulations, copies of which are available by contacting the Director of Special Education, the student shall be referred to the Committee on Special Education.  Discipline, if warranted, shall be administered consistent with the separate requirements of this code of conduct for disciplining students with a disability or presumed to have a disability. A student identified as having a disability shall not be disciplined for behavior related to his/her disability. The relationship between the disciplinary infraction and the disability shall require a determination by the Committee on Special Education.

A.    Interventions

Students who are found to have violated the district’s code of conduct may be subject to the following interventions, either alone or in combination.  These interventions are not necessarily listed in sequential order.  The school personnel identified after each intervention are authorized to provide or arrange for the provision of that intervention.  

  1. Positive alternatives, such as: - any member of the district staff
    1. student motivation
    2. social skills
    3. problem-solving skills
    4. positive reinforcements
    5. logical consequences
    6. anger management
    7. conflict resolution, and
    8. behavior management techniques
  2. Team therapeutic intervention – social worker, guidance counselor, school psychologist
  3. Utilization of appropriate temporary settings – any member of the district staff

 

B. Consequences

Students who are found to have violated the district’s code of conduct may be subject to the following consequences, either alone or in combination. The school personnel identified after each consequence are authorized to impose that consequence, consistent with the student’s right to due process. Administrators seeking to address a particular code infraction with a penalty that is outside the range of consequences designated for that infraction must first consult with the superintendent of schools to review the unique and/or extenuating circumstances that might justify such a deviation.

  1. Oral warning – any member of the district staff
  2. Referral to building administrator – bus drivers, hall and lunch monitors, coaches, guidance counselors, teachers
  3. Notification of parent – coaches, guidance counselors, teachers, assistant principal, principal, superintendent
  4. Detention – teachers, assistant principal, principal, superintendent
  5. Suspension from transportation – assistant principal, principal, superintendent
  6. Suspension from athletic participation – assistant principal, principal, superintendent
  7. Suspension from social or extracurricular activities – assistant principal, principal, superintendent
  8. Suspension of other privileges – assistant principal, principal, superintendent
  9. In-school suspension – principal, superintendent
  10. Removal from classroom by teacher – teacher
  11. Short-term (five days or less) suspension from school, which includes suspension from athletic participation and from social or extracurricular activities – principal, superintendent, board of education, consistent with Education Law §3214 and §2801
  12. Long-term (more than five days) suspension from school, which includes suspension from athletic participation and from social or extracurricular activities – superintendent, board of education
  13. Permanent suspension from school – superintendent, board of education.

C.   Infractions with Consequence References

  1. Disturbances that disrupt instruction. (1, 2, 3, 4, 8, 9, 11)
  2. Repeated disruption and/or substantial interference with the teacher’s authority in class, giving rise to removal on four or more occasions per semester. (11, 12)
  3. Abusive language and/or indecent gestures directed at staff, students or visitors on school grounds or at school functions. (1, 2, 3, 4, 8, 9, 11)
  4. Dress or grooming that is inappropriate as described in this code. (1, 2, 3, 4)
  5. Possession or dissemination of obscene materials. (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 11)
  6. Possession and/or use of tobacco in any form or of electronic cigarettes on campus or at school functions. (4, 8, 9, 11)
  7. Cheating in any academic, extra-curricular or co-curricular activity. (2, 3, 4, 8, 9, 11, 12)
  8. Abusive and/or indecent language and/or gestures directed at school employees or students on school grounds or at school functions which provoke a fight. (2, 3, 4, 8, 9, 11)
  9. Willful failure to obey the reasonable directives of school staff (insubordination), including directives not to engage in conduct otherwise referenced as an infraction in this code and for failing to notify a parent of assignment to detention. (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 11, 12) 
  10. Fighting between students where no dangerous instruments are involved and no person is injured in the altercation. (4, 9, 11)
  11. Fighting between students where harm is caused to one or more of the combatants. (4, 9, 11, 12, 13)
  12. A fight involving the use or threatened use of a dangerous or deadly weapon or dangerous object. (11, 12, 13)
  13. Any violent act or threat of a violent act against a teacher or other staff member, as described in this code. (4, 11, 12, 13)
  14. Any violent act or threat of a violent act against another student or person in the schools or at a school function, as described in this code. (4, 11, 12, 13)
  15. Possession of dangerous or deadly weapons or dangerous objects on school property. (4, 11, 12, 13)
  16. Possession of illegal drugs, dangerous drugs, counterfeit drugs, alcohol, unauthorized prescription drugs, a substance that the individual believes or represents to be such drugs or alcohol, or drug paraphernalia, at school or at school functions. (11, 12, 13)
  17. Use of illegal drugs, dangerous drugs, counterfeit drugs, alcohol, unauthorized prescription drugs, a substance that the individual believes or represents to be such drugs or alcohol, or drug paraphernalia, at school or while attending school functions. (11, 12, 13)
  18. Sale, sharing, or other distribution of illegal drugs, dangerous drugs, counterfeit drugs, alcohol, unauthorized prescription drugs, or a substance that the individual believes or represents to be such drugs or alcohol, at school or while at school functions. (11, 12, 13)
  19. Use or misuse, sale, sharing or distribution of prescription or over-the-counter drugs without the supervision of the school nurse or the building administrator, at school or while at school functions. (1, 2, 3, 4, 11, 12, 13) 
  20. Possession of fireworks on school property or at school functions. (11, 12) 
  21. Use of fireworks while on school property or at school functions. (11, 12, 13) 
  22. Commission of conduct that constitutes a misdemeanor while on school property or at a school function. (11, 12)
  23. Commission of conduct that constitutes a felony while on school property or at a school function. (11, 12, 13)
  24. Commission of conduct that is committed off school premises or at a non-school sponsored activity if it is believed by school authorities that the continued attendance in school by the student committing the crime would constitute an endangerment to the health, physical and/or emotional safety, welfare or morals of the students or others in the schools. (11, 12, 13) 
  25. Gambling. (1, 2, 3, 4, 6, 7, 8, 9, 11) 
  26. Hazing. (11, 12)
  27. Lewd behavior. (9, 11, 12)
  28. Extortion. (11, 12, 13)
  29. Plagiarism. (3, 4, 9, 11)
  30. Arson. (11, 12, 13)
  31. Intentional destruction of school property. (9, 11, 12, 13)
  32. Theft of school property. (11, 12, 13)
  33. Mental or physical condition that endangers the health, safety and/or welfare of the student or others. (9, 11, 12, 13)
  34. Using and/or displaying during school hours any and all forms of radios, walkman-style tape, CD, or DVD players, audio and/or video recorders, laptop computers, external speakers, pagers, digital music players, cell phones/smartphones/smartwatches (including, but not limited to, talking, text messaging, message playing, ring-tone playing, game playing, music playing, audio recording, picture taking and video taking), electronic games, and similar items; using a music player with a headset except by high school students only in a scheduled high school lounge, in the high school hallways, during a scheduled lunch period in the high school cafeteria, or by K-12 students on District transportation; using a cell phone except by high school students only in a scheduled high school lounge, during a scheduled lunch period in the high school cafeteria, or by K-12 students on District transportation; using a music player with a headset or a laptop computer, except in high school and middle school classrooms at the discretion of the individual classroom teacher; using electronic games, other than age-appropriate software by K-12 students on District transportation; using any recording, broadcasting, and/or playback equipment or materials, including but not limited to video recorders, cameras, cell phone cameras, tape recorders, or videophones, in school, on school grounds, and/or at school events without prior teacher or administrator approval, (confiscation, 1, 2, 3, 4, 9, 11)
  35. Violation of computer use policy. (1, 2, 3, 4, 8 – computer privileges, 9, 11, 12)
  36. Class, study hall, homeroom, teacher detention, administrative detention cuts. (4, 9, 11)
  37. Eating or drinking outside of lunch periods without prior permission from a staff member or where otherwise prohibited. (1, 2, 3, 4)
  38. Driving recklessly, speeding, failing to follow staff directives on school grounds. (8 – driving privileges, 9, 11)
  39. Activation of a false alarm, bomb threat or other disaster alarm. (11, 12)
  40. Forgery or fraud. (3, 4, 8, 9, 11, 12)
  41. Bullying, including cyberbullying, and harassment. (sexual [refer to BOE Policy 0120], racial, etc.) (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13)
  42. Intimidation or coercion. (9, 11, 12)
  43. Leaving campus without prior authorization. (2, 3, 4, 8, 9, 11)
  44. Parking in unauthorized areas. (1, 2, 3, 4, 9, 11)
  45. Public displays of affection beyond hand holding. (1, 2, 3, 4, 9, 11)
  46. Tardiness to class/school. (1, 2, 3, 4, lunch detention)
  47. Unauthorized absence from school. (1, 2, 3, 4, 9)
  48. Theft of personal property. (4, 9, 11, 12)
  49. Being in any school building or on school grounds  outside of activity hours and/or while suspended from school. (1, 2, 3, 4, 7, 8, 9, 11)
  50. Being in an unauthorized area of a school building or campus. (1, 2, 3, 4, 7, 8, 9, 11)

The repetition of an infraction may lead to the imposition of the next measure of discipline.  Chronic repetition of infractions may lead to long-term suspension or permanent suspension.

D.  Procedures

The type of due process a student is entitled to receive before a penalty is imposed depends on the consequence being imposed. In all cases, regardless of the consequence imposed, the school personnel authorized to impose the consequence must inform the student of the alleged misconduct and must investigate, to the extent necessary, the facts surrounding the alleged misconduct. All students will have an opportunity to present their version of the facts to the school personnel imposing the disciplinary consequence in connection with the imposition of the penalty. Students who are to be given consequences other than an oral warning or written notification to their parents are entitled to additional rights before the penalty is imposed. These additional rights are explained below.

 

  1. Detention

Teachers, the assistant principal, principals and the superintendent may use detention as a consequence for student misconduct in situations where removal from the classroom or suspension would be inappropriate. Detention may be conducted during the school day, during the time normally reserved for lunch and/or recess.

At the middle school level, detention may also be conducted after school on designated days from 2:40 p.m. through 3:20 p.m.  At the high school level, detention may also be conducted after school on designated days, either from 2:40 p.m. through 3:20 p.m. (minor detention) or from 2:40 p.m. through 4:40 p.m. (major detention).  After-school detention will be imposed as a consequence only after the student’s parent has been notified to confirm that there is no parental objection to the penalty and the student has appropriate transportation home following detention.

 

  1. Suspension from transportation

If a student does not conduct himself/herself properly on a bus, the bus driver is

expected to bring such misconduct to the building principal’s attention. Students who become a serious disciplinary problem may have their riding privileges suspended by the building principal or the superintendent. In such cases, the student’s parent will become responsible for seeing that his or her child gets to and from school safely. Should the suspension from transportation amount to a suspension from attendance, the district will make appropriate arrangements to provide for the student’s education.

 A student subjected to a suspension from transportation is not entitled to a full hearing pursuant to Education Law §3214. However, the student and the student’s parent will be provided with a reasonable opportunity for an informal hearing with the building principal or the superintendent to review the conduct and the penalty involved.

 

  1. Suspension from athletic participation, extra curricular activities and other privileges

A student subjected to a suspension from athletic participation, extra-curricular activities or other privileges is not entitled to a full hearing pursuant to Education Law §3214. However, the student and the student’s parent will be provided with a reasonable opportunity for an informal hearing with the district official imposing the suspension to review the conduct and the penalty involved.

 

  1. In-school suspension

The board recognizes that the school must balance the need of students to attend school and the need for order in the classroom to establish an environment conducive to learning. As such, the board authorizes building principals and the superintendent to place students who would otherwise be suspended from school as the result of a code of conduct violation in “in-school suspension.” The in-school suspension teacher will be a certified teacher.

 

A student subjected to an in-school suspension is not entitled to a full hearing pursuant to Education Law §3214. However, the student and the student’s parent will be provided with a reasonable opportunity for an informal conference with the district official imposing the in-school suspension to discuss the conduct and the penalty involved.

 

  1. Teacher disciplinary removal of disruptive students

A student’s behavior can affect a teacher’s ability to teach and can make it difficult for other students in the classroom to learn. In most instances the classroom teacher can control a student’s behavior and maintain or restore control over the classroom by using good classroom management techniques. These techniques may include defusion, de-escalation, and redirection.

 

After the classroom teacher has exhausted these and other appropriate interventions, the teacher may need to direct a student to leave the classroom briefly to give the student an opportunity to regain his or her composure and self-control in an alternative setting. Such practices may include, but are not limited to: (1) short-term “time out” in an elementary classroom or in an administrator’s office; (2) sending a student into the hallway briefly; (3) sending a student to the principal’s office for the remainder of the class time only; or (4) sending a student to a guidance counselor or other district staff member for counseling.  These classroom management techniques do not constitute disciplinary removals for purposes of this code.

 

On occasion, a student’s behavior may become disruptive in class. For purposes of this code of conduct, a disruptive student is a student who is substantially disruptive of the educational process or substantially interferes with the teacher’s authority over the classroom. A substantial disruption of the educational process or substantial interference with a teacher’s authority occurs when a student demonstrates a persistent unwillingness to comply with the teacher’s instructions or repeatedly violates the teacher’s classroom behavior rules.

 

A classroom teacher may remove a disruptive student from class for up to two days. The removal from class applies to the class of the removing teacher only.

 

If the teacher finds that the student’s continued presence in the classroom does not pose a continuing danger to persons and property and does not present an ongoing threat of disruption to the academic process, the teacher shall, prior to removing the student from the classroom, provide the student with an explanation of the basis for the removal and allow the student to informally present his/her version of the relevant events. In all other cases, the teacher shall provide the student with an explanation of the basis for the removal and an informal opportunity to be heard within twenty-four hours after the student’s removal.

 

If the student poses a danger or ongoing threat of disruption, the teacher may order the student to be removed immediately. The teacher must, however, explain to the student why he or she was removed from the classroom and give the student a chance to present his or her version of the relevant events within 24-hours.

 

The teacher must complete a district-established disciplinary referral form and meet with the principal or his or her designee as soon as possible, but no later than the end of the school day, to explain the circumstances of the removal and to present the referral form. If the principal or designee is not available by the end of the same school day, the teacher must leave the form with the secretary and meet with the principal or designee prior to the beginning of classes on the next school day.

 

Within 24-hours after the student’s removal, the principal or another district administrator designated by the principal must notify the student’s parents, by telephone and letter, that the student has been removed from class and the reasons for the removal. The notice must also inform the parent that he or she has the right, upon request, to meet informally with the principal or the principal’s designee to discuss the reasons for the removal.

 

If the parent, upon notification by the authorized administrator, requests an informal conference, the teacher who ordered the removal is required to be present at the informal conference.

 

If at the informal meeting the student denies the charges, the principal or the principal’s designee must explain why the student was removed and give the student and the student’s parents a chance to present the student’s version of the relevant events. The informal meeting must be held within 48 hours of the student’s removal. The timing of the informal meeting may be extended by mutual agreement of the parent and principal.

 

The principal may overturn the removal of the student from class if the principal finds any one of the following:

  1. The charges against the student are not supported by substantial evidence.
  2. The student’s removal is otherwise in violation of law, including the district’s code of conduct.
  3. The conduct warrants suspension from school pursuant to Education Law §3214 and a suspension will be imposed.

 

The principal may overturn a removal at any point between receiving the referral form issued by the teacher and the close of business on the day following the 48-hour period for the informal conference, if a conference is requested. No student removed from the classroom by the classroom teacher will be permitted to return to the classroom until the principal makes a final determination, or the period of removal expires, whichever is less.

 

Any disruptive student removed from the classroom by the classroom teacher shall be offered continued educational programming and activities until he or she is permitted to return to the classroom.  In the event of teacher removal of a disruptive student in accordance with the code of conduct, continued educational programming will be provided as soon as practicable.

 

Each teacher must keep a complete written log, including student name, class, explanation of infraction with details, date of infraction, and date(s) of removal from class, for all cases of removal of students from his or her class. The principal must keep a written log, to include the same information, of all removals of students from classes in that principal’s school.

 

Removal of a student with a disability, under certain circumstances, may constitute a change in the student’s placement. Accordingly, no teacher may remove a student with a disability from his or her class until he or she has verified with the principal that the removal will not constitute a change in placement.

 

 

  1. Suspension from school

 

Suspension from school is a severe penalty, which may be imposed only upon students who are insubordinate, seriously disorderly, violent or disruptive, or whose conduct otherwise endangers the safety, morals, health or welfare of others.  A student suspended from a BOCES vocational program is automatically suspended from the home school, and a student suspended from the home school is automatically suspended from the BOCES vocational program. 

 

The Board retains its authority to suspend students, but places primary responsibility for the suspension of students with the superintendent and the building principals. Any staff member may recommend to the superintendent or the principal that a student be suspended. All staff members must immediately report and refer a violent student to the principal or the superintendent for a violation of the code of conduct. All recommendations and referrals shall be made in writing unless the conditions underlying the recommendation or referral warrant immediate attention. In such cases a written report is to be prepared as soon as possible by the staff member recommending the suspension.

 

The superintendent or principal, upon receiving a recommendation or referral for suspension or when processing a case for suspension, shall gather the facts relevant to the matter and record them for subsequent presentation, if necessary.

a. Short-term (5 days or less) suspension from school

When the superintendent or principal (referred to as the “suspending authority”) proposes to suspend a student charged with misconduct for five days or less pursuant to Education Law §3214(3), the suspending authority must immediately notify the student orally. If the student denies the misconduct, the suspending authority must provide an explanation of the basis for the proposed suspension. The suspending authority must also notify the student’s parents in writing that the student may be suspended from school. The written notice must be provided by personal delivery, express mail delivery, or some other means that is reasonably calculated to assure receipt of the notice within 24 hours of the decision to propose suspension at the last known address for the parents. Where possible, notice should also be provided by telephone if the school has been provided with a telephone number(s) for the purpose of contacting the parents.

 

The notice shall provide a description of the charges against the student and the incident for which suspension is proposed and shall inform the parents of the right to request an immediate informal conference with the principal. Both the notice and informal conference shall be in the dominant language or mode of communication used by the parents. At the conference, the parents shall be permitted to ask questions of complaining witnesses under such procedures as the principal may establish.

 

The notice and opportunity for an informal conference shall take place before the student is suspended unless the student’s presence in school poses a continuing danger to persons or property or an ongoing threat of disruption to the academic process. If the student’s presence does pose such a danger or threat of disruption, the notice and opportunity for an informal conference shall take place as soon after the suspension as is reasonably practicable.

 

After the confer­ence, the building principal shall promptly advise the parents in writing of his or her decision, at which point in time the suspension will be served, as designated by the building principal. The building principal shall advise the parents that if they are not satisfied with the decision and wish to pursue the matter, they must file a written appeal to the superintendent within five business days, unless they can show extraordinary circumstances precluding them from doing so. The superintendent shall issue a written decision regarding the appeal within 10 business days of receiving the appeal. If the parents are not satisfied with the superintendent’s decision, they must file a written appeal to the board of education with the district clerk within 10 business days of the date of the superintendents’ decision, unless they can show extraordinary circumstances precluding them from doing so. Only final decisions of the Board may be appealed to the Commissioner within 30 days of the decision.

 

b. Long-term (more than 5 days) suspension from school

When the superintendent or building principal determines that a suspension for more than five days may be warranted, he or she shall give reasonable notice to the student and the student’s parents of their right to a fair hearing. At the hearing the student shall be informed regarding the privilege against self-incrimination, and shall have the right to be represented by counsel, the right to question witnesses against him or her and the right to present witnesses and other evidence on his or her behalf.

                                                                                                                       

The superintendent shall personally hear and determine the proceed­ing or may, in his or her discretion, designate a hearing officer to conduct the hearing. The hearing officer shall be authorized to admin­ister oaths and to issue subpoenas in conjunction with the proceeding before him or her. A record of the hearing shall be maintained, but no steno­graphic transcript shall be required. A tape recording shall be deemed a satisfactory record. The hearing officer shall make findings of fact and recommendations as to the appropriate measure of discipline to the superintendent. The report of the hearing officer shall be advisory only, and the superintendent may accept all or any part thereof.

 

An appeal of the decision of the superintendent may be made to the Board that will make its decision based solely upon the record before it. All appeals to the board must be in writing and submitted to the district clerk within 10 business days of the date of the superintendent’s decision, unless the parents can show that extraordinary circumstances precluded them from doing so. The Board may adopt in whole or in part the decision of the superintendent. Final decisions of the Board may be appealed to the Commissioner within 30 days of the decision.

 

c. Permanent suspension

Permanent suspension is reserved for extraordinary circumstances such as where a student’s conduct poses a life-threatening danger to the safety and well-being of other students, school personnel or any other person lawfully on school property or attending a school function.

E.  Minimum Periods of Suspension

  1. Students who bring a weapon to school

Any student found guilty of bringing a weapon onto school property will be subject to suspension from school for at least one calendar year. A student with a disability or suspected disability shall be reviewed in accordance with Section X of this document.

 

Before being suspended, the student will have an opportunity for a hearing pursuant to Education Law §3214. The superintendent has the authority to modify the one-year suspension on a case-by-case basis. In deciding whether to modify the penalty, the superintendent may consider the following:

 

  1. The student’s age.
  2. The student’s grade in school.
  3. The student’s prior disciplinary record.
  4. The superintendent’s belief that other forms of discipline may be more effective.
  5. Input from parents, teachers and/or others.
  6. Other extenuating circumstances.

 

A student with a disability may be suspended only in accordance with the requirements of state and federal law.

 

  1. Students who commit violent acts other than bringing a weapon to school

Any student who is found to have committed a violent act, as outlined in Section II and Section VI, other than bringing a weapon onto school property, shall be subject to suspension from school for at least five days.  A student with a disability shall be reviewed in accordance with Section X of this document. 

 

If the proposed penalty is the minimum five-day suspension, the student and the student’s parents will be given the same notice and opportunity for an informal conference given to all students subject to a short-term suspension. If the proposed penalty exceeds the minimum five-day suspension, the student and the student’s parents will be given the same notice and opportunity for a superintendent’s hearing given to all students subject to a long-term suspension. The superintendent has the authority to modify the minimum five-day suspension on a case-by-case basis. In deciding whether to modify the penalty, the superintendent may consider the same factors considered in modifying a one-year suspension for possessing a weapon.

 

  1. Students who are repeatedly substantially disruptive of the educational process or repeatedly substantially interfere with the teacher’s authority over the classroom

Any student who repeatedly is substantially disruptive of the educational process or substantially interferes with the teacher’s authority over the classroom will be suspended from school for at least two to five days. A student with a disability shall be reviewed in accordance with Section X of this document.  For purposes of this code of conduct, “repeatedly is substantially disruptive” means engaging in conduct that results in the student being removed from the classroom by teacher(s) pursuant to Education Law §3214(3-a) and this code on four or more occasions during a semester. If the proposed penalty is the minimum suspension of two to five days, the student and the student’s parent will be given the same notice and opportunity for an informal conference given to all students subject to a short-term suspension. If the proposed penalty exceeds a five-day suspension, the student and the student’s parent will be given the same notice and opportunity for a hearing given to all students subject to a long-term suspension. The superintendent has the authority to modify the minimum suspension on a case-by-case basis. In deciding whether to modify the penalty, the superintendent may consider the same factors considered in modifying a one-year suspension for possessing a weapon.

F.   Referrals

  1. Counseling

The Guidance Office shall handle all referrals of students to counseling.

  1. PINS Petitions

The district may file a PINS (person in need of supervision) petition in Family Court on any student under the age of 18 who demonstrates that he or she requires supervision and treatment by:

  1. Being habitually truant (at least 10 illegal absences in the current school year) and not attending school as required by part one of Article 65 of the Education Law.
  2. Engaging in an ongoing or continual course of conduct which makes the student incorrigible or ungovernable, or habitually disobedient and beyond the lawful control of the school.
  3. Knowingly and unlawfully possessesing drugs/alcohol in violation of Penal Law §221.05. A single violation of §221.05 will be a sufficient basis for filing a PINS petition.

 

       3.  Juvenile Delinquents and Juvenile Offenders

 The Superintendent is required to refer the following students to the County Attorney for a juvenile delinquency proceeding before the Family Court:

  1. Any student under the age of 16 who is found to have brought a weapon to school, or
  2. Any student 14 or 15 years old who qualifies for juvenile offender status under the Criminal Procedure Law §1.20 (42).

 

The Superintendent is required to refer students age 16 and older or any student 14 or 15 years old who qualifies for juvenile offender status to the appropriate law enforcement authorities.

 

IX.  Dignity for All Students: Prohibiting Bullying, Discrimination, Hazing and Harassment

 

In accordance with New York State’s “Dignity for All Students Act” (“DASA”), the Board of Education is committed to fostering civility and providing all students and staff within the school district with an environment in which to learn and work that is safe, civil and respectful, and free from all forms of bullying, discrimination, hazing, and/or harassment.  Therefore, the Board condemns, and will not tolerate, any and all instances of bullying and harassing behavior, and all behavior that has the purpose or effect of creating an intimidating, hostile, dangerous or offensive learning or working environment.  It shall be a violation of this policy for any K-12 student, school district employee or third party (school visitor, volunteer, contractor, vendor, etc.) to bully, harass, discriminate, or intimidate through word or deed any other student, employee, or any other individual associated with the school.

 

Policy Definitions

 

  • “School Property” means in or within any building, structure, athletic playing field, playground, parking lot, or land contained within the real property boundary line of a public elementary or secondary school; or in or on a school bus (Education Law §11[1]).

 

  • “School Bus” means every motor vehicle owned by a public or governmental agency or private school and operated for the transportation of pupils, children of pupils, teachers and other persons acting in a supervisory capacity, to or from school or school activities, or, privately owned and operated for compensation for the transportation of pupils, children of pupils, teachers and other persons acting in a supervisory capacity to or from school or school activities (Education Law §11[1] and Vehicle and Traffic Law §142).

 

  • “School Function” means a school sponsored extracurricular event or activity (Education §11[2]).

 

  • “Disability” means (a) a physical, mental or medical impairment resulting from anatomical, physiological, genetic or neurological conditions which prevents the exercise of a normal bodily function or is demonstrable by medically accepted clinical or laboratory diagnostic techniques or (b) a record of such an impairment or (c) a condition regarded by others as such an impairment, provided, however, that in all provisions of this article dealing with employment, the term must be limited to disabilities which, upon the provision of reasonable accommodations, do not prevent the complainant from performing in a reasonable manner the activities involved in the job or occupation sought or held (Education Law §11[4] and Executive Law §292[21]).

 

  • “Employee” means any person receiving compensation from a school district or employee of a contracted service provider or worker placed within the school under a public assistance employment program, pursuant to title nine(B) of article five of the Social Services Law, and consistent with the provisions of such title for the provision of services to such district, its students or employees, directly or through contract, whereby such services performed by such person involve direct student contact (Education Law §§11[4] and 1125[3]).

 

  • “Sexual Orientation” means actual or perceived heterosexuality, homosexuality, or bisexuality (Education Law §11[5]).

 

  • “Gender” means actual or perceived sex and includes a person’s gender identity or expression (Education Law §11[6]).

 

  • “Harassment” means the creation of a hostile environment by conduct or by verbal threats, intimidation or abuse that has or would have the effect of unreasonably and substantially interfering with a student’s educational performance, opportunities or benefits, or mental, emotional or physical wellbeing; or conduct, verbal threats, intimidation or abuse that reasonably causes or would reasonably be expected to cause a student to fear for his or her physical safety; such conduct, verbal threats, intimidation or abuse includes but is not limited to conduct, verbal threats, intimidation or abuse based on a person’s actual or perceived race, color, weight, national origin, ethnic group, religion, religious practice, disability, sexual orientation, gender or sex (Education Law§11[7])

 

  • “Hazing” is an induction, initiation or membership process involving harassment which produces public humiliation, physical or emotional discomfort, bodily injury or public ridicule or creates a situation where public humiliation, physical or emotional discomfort, bodily injury or public ridicule is likely to occur.

 

For the purposes of this policy and its implementation, bullying, discrimination, hazing, and/or harassment are considered as negative, hateful, and/or intimidating actions or behaviors that intend to and/or that do harm, that upset, or that compromise the physical, psychological, or emotional safety of a targeted person or persons.  Anyone can become the target of bullying, discrimination, hazing, and/or harassment. Bullying, discrimination hazing, and/or harassment may be based upon race, color, weight, national origin, ethnic group, religion, religious practice, sex, gender, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, or disability, all either actual or perceived.  However, bullying, discrimination hazing, and/or harassment are certainly not limited to individuals in these or other protected classes, and could be based upon other characteristics as well, such as, but not limited to, social or socioeconomic status, height, or other characteristics that an individual or individuals may target a victim for  bullying, discrimination, hazing, and/or harassment.  Such actions or behaviors may take place on school property, at any school-sponsored function regardless of the location, and/or on a school bus. 

 

In addition, such actions or behaviors may otherwise take place off school grounds if they are designed to, or have the effect of, interfering with one’s ability to attend school, to work, and/or to be educated/employed in a safe, non-hostile environment. Bullying, discrimination hazing, and/or harassment that takes place at locations outside of school grounds which can be reasonably expected to materially and substantially interfere with the requirements of appropriate discipline in the operation of the school or impinge on the rights of other students is prohibited, and may be subject to disciplinary consequences.

 

The District reserves the right to discipline students who engage in harassment of students off school property under circumstances where such off-campus conduct would be violative of the student code of conduct.

 

Any retaliatory behavior directed against complainants, victims, witnesses, and/or any other individuals who participate in the investigation of allegations of harassment is prohibited. Follow-up inquiries and/or appropriate monitoring of the alleged harasser and victim shall be made to ensure that the prohibited behavior has not resumed and that those involved in the investigation of allegations of the prohibited behavior have not suffered retaliation.  Furthermore, any person having reasonable cause to suspect that a student or staff member has been subjected to bullying, discrimination, hazing or harassment by an employee or a student, as defined in this policy, and reports said prohibited behavior as required shall be free from retaliation of any kind.   

 

Forms of bullying may include, but are not limited to physical aggression (such as hitting, kicking, spitting, pushing, taking personal belongings), social or relational aggression (such as intimidation), social exclusion, verbal aggression (such as taunting, malicious teasing, spreading rumors, name calling, making threats), non-verbal aggression, extortion, bias harassment, hate speech or actions, sexual harassment (refer to Policy #0110), electronic bullying or cyberbullying (harassment or bullying by any form of electronic communication, such as communications using instant messaging, e-mail, websites, blogs, chat rooms, gaming systems, social media web sites, text messaging, pagers, cell phones, and/or cell phone camera photographs, including incidents occurring off school property that create or would foreseeably create a risk of substantial disruption within the school environment.), and hazing (any conduct, methods of initiation into any student organization, whether on public or private property, before, during or after school hours, which willfully or recklessly endangers the physical or mental health of any student or other person, or which is reasonably likely to cause embarrassment, intimidation, physical, emotional or psychological harm, including loss of human  dignity, to another person.). All such conduct is disruptive of the educational process and is therefore prohibited.

 

It is the responsibility of all students and staff to create, support, and maintain a safe, civil and respectful school environment.  This includes school-sponsored functions, school buses, athletics, and other school activities, whether on or off of school premises. 

 

School training programs to raise awareness of and to discourage bullying, discrimination, hazing, and discrimination will be developed for use with students and staff and will be provided to students and to staff on an annual basis. In addition, staff members will be trained annually in awareness of and sensitivity to potential bullying, discrimination, hazing, and harassment to enable them to prevent and respond to any and all situations therof.

 

In order to maintain a climate of mutual respect and dignity for all students that will strengthen students’ confidence and promote learning, members of the staff are expected to confront issues of bullying, discrimination, hazing and/or harassment and/or any other situation that threatens the emotional or physical health or safety of any student, school employee or any person who is lawfully on school, property or at a school function. Staff members are expected to address personal biases that may prevent equal treatment of all students in the school or the classroom setting, and to report incidents of bullying, discrimination, and/or harassment that are witnessed or otherwise brought to the attention of the staff member in a timely fashion.

 

Staff members who observe behaviors that are, or might reasonably be understood to be, incidents of bullying, discrimination, hazing, or harassment are required to intervene and address such incidents, and to report such incidents that they observe or are reported to them to the building principal, or his/her designee, as soon as possible after it occurs, and on a consistent and timely basis.  The Building Principal, or his/her designee, will promptly investigate all complaints of bullying, discrimination, hazing, and/or harassment, either formal or informal, verbal or written, and pursue appropriate administrative action, consisting of measured, balanced, and age-appropriate responses, with remedies focused on intervention and education, with the focus of discipline on discerning and correcting the reasons why bullying, discrimination and/or harassment occurred, as indicated by the outcome of the investigation.

Remedial responses should be designed to correct the problem behavior, prevent another occurrence of the behavior, and protect the target of the act or acts.

Appropriate individual-focused remedial measures may include, but are not limited to: peer support groups, corrective instruction or other relevant learning or service experience; supportive intervention; behavioral assessment or evaluation; behavioral management plans with closely-monitored benchmarks; student counseling; and parent conferences. School-wide or environmental remediation strategies may include, but are not limited to: supervisory systems; school and/or community surveys to identify conditions contributing to relevant behavior; research-based, systemic prevention programs; modification of schedules; adjustment of hallway traffic patterns and flow; targeted use of monitors; staff professional development; parent conferences; involvement of parent-teacher organizations; and peer support groups.   

 

Victims of bullying, discrimination, hazing, and/or harassment, as well as individuals who have knowledge of, or who witness, a possible occurrence of bullying, discrimination and/or harassment, are strongly encouraged to report such an incident to a member of the staff as soon as possible if anticipated or after it occurs. The staff member to whom the report is made shall make a report to the Building Principal or designee and/or the official designated by the District to investigate allegations of bullying, discrimination, hazing, and/or harassment. The victim’s privacy and need for anonymity will be respected by the staff member(s) to whom the incident has been reported.  Anonymous reporting, while severely hampering school authorities from fully enforcing this policy and the Code of Conduct, will enable school authorities to monitor the situation in the future and intervene as necessary.  Retaliation against victims, witnesses, and others for reporting such an incident, as well as deliberately falsely reporting such an incident, is a violation of this policy as well.

 

The Board supports initiatives on the part of staff to model respectful behavior in the District’s schools and to acknowledge appropriate behavior by students and staff members. In addition, the Building Principal of each school will serve as the Dignity Act Coordinator (DAC) of that school.  The school’s Dignity Act Coordinator will lead and coordinate the efforts of the school’s DASA Team, which will be comprised of the individual school’s administrators and pupil personnel staff, who will be thoroughly trained to handle human relations in the areas of bullying, discrimination, hazing, and/or harassment identified in this policy, in order to proactively address, and to respond to, any and all incidents thereof.   

 

The Superintendent of Schools is directed to develop and implement specific procedures for reporting, investigating, resolving, and documenting bullying and harassment complaints, as well as to implement training programs for staff and age-appropriate bullying and harassment prevention and education programming for students, and to communicate information about this policy to staff, students, parents and community members through various means, including the District web site.

 

 

X. Alternative Instruction

 

When a teacher removes a student of any age is removed from class or a student of compulsory attendance age is suspended from school pursuant to Education Law §3214, the district will take immediate steps to provide alternative means of instruction for the student.  In the event of teacher removal of a disruptive student in accordance with the Code of Conduct, continued educational programming will be provided as soon as practicable.

 

XI.  Discipline of Students with Disabilities

 

The Board recognizes that it may be necessary to suspend, remove or otherwise discipline students with disabilities to address disruptive or problem behavior. The Board also recognizes that students with disabilities enjoy certain procedural protections whenever school authorities intend to impose discipline upon them. The Board is committed to ensuring that the procedures followed for suspending,removing or otherwise disciplining  students with disabilities are consistent with the procedural safeguards required by applicable laws and regulations.

 

This Code of Conduct affords students with disabilities subject to disciplinary action no greater or lesser rights than those expressly afforded by applicable federal and state law and regulations.

 

If guilt is determined, before a penalty may be imposed, the following rules shall apply:

 

  • Section 504/Title II ADA Disability: Before discipline may be meted out for a student with a disability or suspected disability founded solely under §504 of the    Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (hereinafter“§504”)/Title II of the Americans With Disabilities Act (hereinafter the “ADA”), the §504 multi-disciplinary committee (hereinafter the “§504 Committee”) must make a determination of whether the conduct underlying the charge(s) was a manifestation of the disability.

 

  1. If a nexus is found between the disability and the conduct underlying the charges, the §504 Committee must register a referral and bring about an evaluation of a student with a suspected disability or, if the student is already eligible under §504, it must consider possible program modification and disposition on a non-disciplinary basis.

 

  1. If no nexus is found, yet a disability is indicated or has been identified, discipline may be imposed upon remand to the §3214 Hearing Officer.

Students whose sole disabilities are founded under §504 and for whom no nexus is found shall be disciplined in the same manner as their non-disabled peers.

 

Any penalty imposed may not be based on past behavior for which a nexus determination was not made.

 

The District must continue to provide a free appropriate public education to students who have been suspended from school as required by the regulations

 

implementing §504 (34 CFR §104 et. Seq.) until the end of the school year in which the student reaches the age of 21.

           

  • IDEA Disability: Before discipline may be meted out for a student classified or deemed to be known as having a disability under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (hereinafter “IDEA”), the Committee on Special Education (hereinafter the “CSE”) must make a determination of whether the conduct underlying the charges was a manifestation of the disability.

 

If a nexus is found between the disability and the conduct, the §3214 proceeding must be discontinued (except for weapons, drugs and dangerous behavior) and the matter placed under the jurisdiction of the CSE for any further consideration.  The CSE must register a referral and bring about an evaluation in the case of a student who may be determined to be known as having a disability or, if the student is already classified under IDEA, it must consider possible program modification and disposition on a non-disciplinary basis.

 

  1. If no nexus is found, yet nonetheless a disability is indicated or has been identified, discipline may be imposed upon remand to the §3214 Hearing Officer. The relevant disciplinary procedures applicable to children without disabilities may be applied in the same manner in which they would be applied to children without disabilities, as long as the child continues to receive a free appropriate public education during any such term of suspension.                                                                     

 

  1. Where no nexus is found and no suspected disability is determined to exist, the matter shall be remanded to the §3214 hearing officer for a determination of penalty.

 

Any penalty imposed may not be based on past behavior for which a nexus determination was not made.

 

The District must continue to provide a free appropriate public education to students who have been suspended from school.

A.  Authorized Suspensions or Removals of Students with Disabilities

For purposes of this section of the code of conduct, the following definitions apply.

A “suspension” means a suspension pursuant to Education Law §3214.

For purposes of change in placement, a “removal” means a removal for disciplinary reasons from the student’s current educational placement other than a

suspension and change in placement to an interim alternative educational setting (IAES) ordered by an impartial hearing officer because the student poses a risk of harm to himself or herself or others.

 

      An “IAES” means a temporary educational placement for a period of up to 45 days, other than the student’s current placement at the time the behavior precipitating the IAES placement occurred, that enables the student to continue to progress in the general curriculum, although in another setting, to continue to receive those services and modifications, including those described on the student’s current individualized education program (IEP), that will enable the student to meet the goals set out in such IEP, and include services and modifications to address the behavior which precipitated the IAES placement that are designed to prevent the behavior from recurring.

 

School personnel may order the suspension or removal of a student with a disability from his or her current educational placement, as follows:                                                                                                      

  1. The Board, the district (BOCES) superintendent of schools or a building principal may order the placement of a student with a disability into an IAES, another setting or suspension for a period not to exceed five consecutive school days and not to exceed the amount of time a non-disabled student would be subject to suspension for the same behavior.
  2. The Superintendent may order the placement of a student with a disability into an IAES, another setting or suspension for up to 10 consecutive school days, inclusive of any period in which the student has been suspended or removed under subparagraph (a) above for the same behavior, if the superintendent determines that the student has engaged in behavior that warrants a suspension and the suspension or removal does not exceed the amount of time non-disabled students would be subject to suspension for the same behavior.
  3. The superintendent may order additional suspensions of not more than 10 consecutive school days in the same school year for separate incidents of misconduct, as long as those removals do not constitute a change of placement.
  4. The superintendent may order the placement of a student with a disability in an IAES to be determined by the committee on special education (CSE), for the same amount of time that a student without a disability would be subject to discipline, but not more than 45 days, if the student carries or possesses a weapon to school or to a school function, or the student knowingly possesses or uses illegal drugs or sells or solicits the sale of a controlled substance while at school or a school function.
  • “Weapon” means the same as “dangerous weapon” under 18 U.S.C. § 930(g)(w) which includes “a weapon, device, instrument, material or substance, animate or inanimate, that is used for, or is readily capable of causing death or serious bodily injury, except...[for] a pocket knife with a blade of less than 2 1/2 inches in length.”
  • “Controlled substance” means a drug or other substance identified in certain provisions of the federal Controlled Substances Act specified in both federal and state law and regulations applicable to this policy.
  • “Illegal drugs” means a controlled substance except for those legally possessed or used under the supervision of a licensed health-care professional or that is legally possessed or used under any other authority under the Controlled Substances Act or any other federal law.

 

            Subject to specified conditions required by both federal and state law and regulations, an impartial hearing officer may order the placement of a student with a disability in an IAES setting for up to 45 days at a time, if maintaining the student in his or her current educational placement poses a risk of harm to the student or others.

B.  Change of Placement Rule

  1. A disciplinary change in placement means a suspension or removal from a student’s current educational placement that is either:

 

  1. for more than 10 consecutive school days; or
  2. for a period of 10 consecutive school days or less if the student is subjected to a series of suspensions or removals that constitute a pattern because they cumulate to more than 10 school days in a school year and because of such factors as the length of each suspension or removal, the total amount of time the student is removed and the proximity of the suspensions or removals to one another.

    2.  School personnel may not suspend or remove a student with disabilities if imposition of the suspension or removal would result in a disciplinary      change in placement based on a pattern of suspension or removal.

 

            However, the district may impose a suspension or removal, which would otherwise result in a disciplinary change in placement, based on a pattern of suspensions or removals if the CSE has determined that the behavior was not a manifestation of the student’s disability, or the student is placed in an IAES for                                                                                                            

behavior involving weapons, illegal drugs or controlled substances.                                                                                    

C.  Special Rules Regarding the Suspension or Removal of Students with Disabilities

  1. The District’s Committee on Special Education shall:
    • Conduct functional behavioral assessments to determine why a student engages in a particular behavior, and develop or review behavioral intervention plans whenever the district is first suspending or removing a student with a disability for more than 10 school days in a school year or imposing a suspension or removal that constitutes a disciplinary change in placement, including a change in placement to an IAES for misconduct involving weapons, illegal drugs or controlled substances.

      If subsequently, a student with a disability who has a behavioral intervention plan and who has been suspended or removed from his or her current educational placement for more than 10 school days in a school year is subjected to a suspension or removal that does not constitute a disciplinary change in placement, the members of the CSE shall review the behavioral intervention plan and its implementation to determine if modifications are necessary.

      If one or more members of the CSE believe that modifications are needed, the school district shall convene a meeting of the CSE to modify such plan and its implementation, to the extent the committee determines necessary.

     

    • Conduct a manifestation determination review of the relationship between the student’s disability and the behavior subject to disciplinary action whenever a decision is made to place a student in an IAES either for misconduct involving weapons, illegal drugs or controlled substances or because maintaining the student in his current educational setting poses a risk of harm to the student or others; or a decision is made to impose a suspension that constitutes a disciplinary change in placement. 
  1. The parents of a student who is facing disciplinary action, but who has not been determined to be eligible for services under IDEA and Article 89 at the time of misconduct, shall have the right to invoke applicable procedural safeguards set forth in federal and state law and regulations if, in accordance with federal and state statutory and regulatory criteria, the school district is deemed to have had knowledge that their child was a student with a disability before the behavior precipitating disciplinary action occurred. If the district is deemed to have had such knowledge, the student will be considered a student presumed to have a disability for discipline purposes.
    1. The superintendent, building principal or other school official imposing a suspension or a teacher imposing a removal shall be responsible for determining whether the student is a student presumed to have a disability.
    2. A student will not be considered a student presumed to have a disability for discipline purposes if, upon receipt of information supporting a claim that the district had knowledge the student was a student with a disability, the district either:
      1. conducted an individual evaluation and determined that the student is not a student with a disability, or
      2. determined that an evaluation was not necessary and provided notice to the parents of such determination, in the manner required by applicable law and regulations.

                                                                                   

If there is no basis for knowledge that the student is a student with a disability prior to taking disciplinary measures against the student, the student may be subjected to the same disciplinary measures as any other non-disabled student who engaged in comparable behaviors.

 

However, if a request for an individual evaluation is made while such non-disabled student is subjected to a disciplinary removal, an expedited evaluation shall be conducted and completed in the manner prescribed by applicable federal and state law and regulations. Until the expedited evaluation is completed, the non-disabled student who is not a student presumed to have a disability for discipline purposes shall remain in the educational placement determined by the district, which can include suspension.

 

  1. The district shall provide parents with notice of disciplinary removal no later than the date on which a decision is made to change the placement of a student

with a disability to an IAES for either misconduct involving weapons, illegal drugs or controlled substances or because maintaining the student in his/her current educational setting poses a risk of harm to the student or others; or a decision is made to impose a suspension or removal that constitutes a disciplinary change in placement.

 

The procedural safeguards notice prescribed by the Commissioner shall accompany the notice of disciplinary removal.

 

  1. The parents of a student with disabilities subject to a suspension of five consecutive school days or less shall be provided with the same opportunity for an informal conference available to parents of non-disabled students under the Education Law. 
  2. Superintendent hearings on disciplinary charges against students with disabilities subject to a suspension of more than five school days shall be bifurcated into a guilt phase and a penalty phase in accordance with the procedures set forth in the Commissioner’s regulations incorporated into this code.
  3. The removal of a student with disabilities other than a suspension or placement in an IAES shall be conducted in accordance with the duprocess

procedures applicable to such removals of non-disabled students, except that school personnel may not impose such removal for more than 10 consecutive days or for a period that would result in a disciplinary change in placement, unless the CSE has determined that the behavior is not a manifestation of the student’s disability.

 

  1. During any period of suspension or removal, including placement in an IAES, students with disabilities shall be provided services as required by the Commissioner’s regulations incorporated into this code.

D.  Expedited Due Process Hearings

  1. An expedited due process hearing shall be conducted in the manner specified by the Commissioner’s regulations incorporated into this code, if:
    1. The district requests such a hearing to obtain an order of an impartial hearing officer placing a student with a disability in an IAES where school personnel maintain that it is dangerous for the student to be in his or her current educational placement, or during the pendency of due process hearings where school personnel maintain that it is dangerous for the student to be in his or her current educational placement during such proceedings.
    2. The parent requests such a hearing from a determination that the student’s behavior was not a manifestation of the student’s disability, or relating to any decision regarding placement, including but not limited to any decision to place the student in an IAES.
      1. During the pendency of an expedited due process hearing or appeal regarding the placement of a student in an IAES for behavior [involving weapons, illegal drugs or controlled substances, or] on grounds of dangerousness or regarding a determination that the behavior is not a manifestation of the student’s disability for a student who has been placed in an IAES, the student shall remain in the IAES pending the decision of the impartial hearing officer or until expiration of the IAES placement, whichever occurs first, unless the parents and the district agree otherwise.
      2. If school personnel propose to change the student’s placement after expiration of an IAES placement, during the pendency of any proceeding to challenge the proposed change in placement, the student shall remain in the placement prior to removal to the IAES, except where the student is again placed in an IAES. 
  1. An expedited due process hearing shall be completed within 15 business days of receipt of the request for a hearing. Although the impartial hearing officer may grant specific extensions of such time period, he or she must mail a written decision to the district and the parents within five business days after the last hearing date, and in no event later than 45 calendar days after receipt of the request for a hearing, without exceptions or extensions.

E.  Referral to law enforcement and judicial authorities

In accordance with the provisions of IDEA and its implementing regulations: 

  1. The district may report a crime committed by a child with a disability to appropriate authorities, and such action will not constitute a change of the student’s placement.
  2. The superintendent shall ensure that copies of the special education and disciplinary records of a student with disabilities are transmitted for consideration to the appropriate authorities to whom a crime is reported, consistent with the consent requirements of FERPA.

 

XII.  Corporal Punishment

 

Corporal punishment is any act of physical force upon a student for the purpose of punishing that student. Corporal punishment of any student by any district employee is strictly forbidden. 

However, in situations where alternative procedures and methods that do not involve the use of physical force cannot reasonably be used, reasonable physical force may be used to:

  1. Protect oneself, another student, teacher or any person from physical injury.
  2. Protect the property of the school or others.
  3. Restrain or remove a student whose behavior interferes with the orderly exercise and performance of school district functions, powers and duties, if that student has refused upon verbal command to refrain from further disruptive acts.

 

The District will file all complaints about the use of corporal punishment with the Commissioner of Education in accordance with Commissioner’s regulations.  

 

 

XIII.  Student Searches and Interrogations

 

The Board of Education is committed to ensuring an atmosphere on school property and at school functions that is safe and orderly. To achieve this kind of environment, any school official authorized to impose a disciplinary penalty on a student may question a student about an alleged violation of law or the district code of conduct. Students are not entitled to any sort of “Miranda”-type warning before being questioned by school officials, nor are school officials required to contact a student’s parent before questioning the student. However, school officials will tell all students why they are being questioned.

 

In addition, the board authorizes the superintendent, building principals, the assistant principal, and the school nurse to conduct searches of students and their belongings if the authorized school official has reasonable suspicion to believe that the search will result in evidence that the student violated the law or the District Code of Conduct.

 

Before searching a student or the student’s belongings, the authorized school official should attempt to get the student to admit that he or she possesses physical evidence that they violated the law or the district code, or get the student to voluntarily consent to the search. Searches will be limited to the extent necessary to locate the evidence sought.

 

An authorized school official may conduct a search of a student’s belongings that is minimally intrusive, such as touching the outside of a book bag, without reasonable suspicion, so long as the school official has a legitimate reason for the very limited search.

 

An authorized school official may search a student or the student’s belongings based upon information received from a reliable informant. Individuals will be considered reliable informants if they have previously supplied information that was accurate and verified, or they make an admission against their own interest, or they provide the same information that is received independently from other sources, or they appear to be credible and the information they are communicating relates to an immediate threat to safety. District employees will be considered reliable informants unless they are known to have previously supplied information that they knew was not accurate.

 

Whenever practicable, searches will be conducted in the privacy of administrative offices or the nurse’s office and students will be present when their possessions are being searched.

A.  Student Lockers, Desks and Other School Storage Places

The rules in this code of conduct regarding searches of students and their belongings do not apply to student lockers, desks and other school storage places. Students have

no reasonable expectation of privacy with respect to these places and school officials retain complete control over them. This means that student lockers, desks and other school storage places may be subject to search at any time by school personnel, without prior notice to students and without their consent.

B.  Strip Searches

A strip search is a search that requires a student to remove any or all of his or her

clothing, other than an outer coat or jacket. If an authorized school official believes it is necessary to conduct a strip search of a student, the school official may do so only if the search is authorized in advance by the superintendent or the school attorney. The only exception to this rule requiring advanced authorization is when the school official believes there is an emergency situation that could threaten the safety of the student or others.

 

Strip searches may only be conducted by an authorized school official of the same sex as the student being searched and in the presence of another district professional employee who is also of the same sex as the student.

 

In every case, the school official conducting a strip search must have probable cause – not simply reasonable cause – to believe the student is concealing evidence of a violation of law or the district code. In addition, before conducting a strip search, the school official must consider the nature of the alleged violation, the student’s age, the student’s record and the need for such a search.                                                                         

 

School officials will attempt to notify the student’s parent by telephone before conducting a strip search, or in writing after the fact if the parent could not be reached by telephone.  The student’s consent to the strip search shall be sought prior to conducting the search.

C.  Documentation of Searches

The authorized school official conducting the search shall be responsible for promptly recording the following information about each search:          

  1. Name, age and grade of student searched.
  2. Reasons for the search.
  3. Name of any informant(s).
  4. Purpose of search (that is, what item(s) were being sought).
  5. Type and scope of search.
  6. Person conducting search and his or her title and position.
  7. Witnesses, if any, to the search.
  8. Time and location of search.
  9. Results of search (that is, what items(s) were found).
  10. Disposition of items found.
  11. Time, manner and results of parental notification.

 

The building principal or the principal’s designee shall be responsible for the custody, control and disposition of any illegal or dangerous item taken from a student. The principal or his or her designee shall clearly label each item taken from the student and retain control of the item(s), until the items is turned over to the police. The principal or his or her designee shall be responsible for personally delivering dangerous or illegal items to police authorities.

D.  Police Involvement in Searches and Interrogations of Students

District officials are committed to cooperating with police officials and other law enforcement authorities to maintain a safe school environment. Police officials, however, have limited authority to interview or search students in schools or at school functions, or to use school facilities in connection with police work. Police officials may enter school property or a school function to question or search a student or to conduct a formal investigation involving students only if they have:

  1. A search or an arrest warrant; or
  2. Probable cause to believe a crime has been committed on school property or at a school function; or
  3. Been invited by school officials.

Before police officials are permitted to question or search any student, the building principal or his or her designee shall first try to notify the student’s parent to give the parent the opportunity to be present during the police questioning or search. If the student’s parent cannot be contacted prior to the police questioning or search, the questioning or search shall not be conducted. The principal or designee will also be present during any police questioning or search of a student on school property or at a school function.

 

  1. Child Protective Services Investigations

 

Consistent with the district’s commitment to keep students safe from harm and the obligation of school officials to report to child protective services when they have reasonable cause to suspect that a student has been abused or maltreated, the district will cooperate with local child protective services workers who wish to conduct interviews of students on school property relating to allegations of suspected child abuse, and/or neglect, or custody investigations.

 

All requests by child protective services to interview a student on school property shall be made directly to building principal or his or her designee. The principal or his or her designee shall set the time and place of the interview. The principal or designee shall decide if it is necessary and appropriate for a school official to be present during the interview, depending on the age of the student being interviewed and the nature of the allegations. If the nature of the allegations is such that it may be necessary for the student to remove any of his or her clothing in order for the child protective services worker to verify the allegations, the school nurse or other district medical personnel must be present during that portion of the interview.  No student may be required to remove his or her clothing in front of a child protective services worker or school district official of the opposite sex.

 

A child protective services worker may not remove a student from school property unless authorized by law.

 

XIV. Visitors to the Schools

 

The board encourages parents and other district citizens to visit the district’s schools and classrooms to observe the work of students, teachers and other staff. Since schools are a place of work and learning, however, certain limits must be set for such visits. The building principal or his or her designee is responsible for all persons in the building and on the grounds. For these reasons, the following rules apply to visitors to the schools:

 

  1. Anyone who is not a regular staff member or student of the school will be considered a visitor.
  2. All visitors to the school must report first to the designated reception area upon arrival at the school. There they will be required to sign the visitor’s register, will be issued a visitor’s identification badge, which must be worn at all times while in the school or on school grounds, and will be directed by a member of the staff to report to main office or other appropriate location. The visitor must return the identification badge to the staff member at the reception area and sign out before leaving the building.
  3. Visitors attending school functions that are open to the public, such as parent-teacher organization meetings or public gatherings, are not required to register.
  4. Parents or citizens who wish to observe a classroom while school is in session are required to arrange such visits in advance with the classroom teacher(s), so that class disruption is kept to a minimum.
  5. Teachers are expected not to take class time to discuss individual matters with visitors.
  6. Any unauthorized person on school property will be reported to the principal or his or her designee. Unauthorized persons will be asked to leave. The police may be called if the situation warrants.
  7. All visitors are expected to abide by the rules for public conduct on school property contained in this code of conduct.

 

XV.  Public Conduct on School Property

 

The District is committed to providing an orderly, respectful environment that is conducive to learning. To create and maintain this kind of an environment, it is necessary to regulate public conduct on school property and at school functions. For purposes of this section of the code, “public” shall mean all persons when on school property or attending a school function including students, teachers and District personnel.

 

The restrictions on public conduct on school property and at school functions contained in this code are not intended to limit freedom of speech or peaceful assembly. The district recognizes that free inquiry and free expression are indispensable to the objectives of the district. The purpose of this code is to maintain public order and prevent abuse of the rights of others.

 

All persons on school property or attending a school function shall conduct themselves in a respectful and orderly manner. In addition, all persons on school property or attending a school function are expected to be properly attired for the purpose they are on school property.

A.  Prohibited Conduct

No person, either alone or with others, shall:

 

  1. Intentionally injure any person or threaten to do so.
  2. Intentionally damage or destroy school district property or the personal property of a teacher, administrator, other district employee or any person lawfully on school property, including graffiti or arson.
  3. Disrupt the orderly conduct of classes, school programs or other school activities.
  4. Distribute or wear materials, or use language or gestures, on school grounds or at school functions that are obscene, advocate illegal action, appear libelous, or are disruptive to the school program.
  5. Distribute or post any written material, pamphlets or posters without prior written approval of the superintendent or his/her designee.
  6. Intimidate, harass or discriminate against any person on the basis of race, color, creed, national origin, religion, age, gender, sexual orientation or disability.
  7. Enter any portion of school grounds or the school premises without legitimate school business to conduct and/or without expressed advance administrative authorization, or remain in any building or facility after it is normally closed.
  8. Obstruct the free movement of any person in any place to which this code applies.
  9. Violate the traffic laws, parking regulations or other restrictions on vehicles.
  10. Allow pets to defecate on school grounds without cleaning up after them.
  11. Possess, consume, sell, share, distribute or exchange alcoholic beverages, tobacco products, and/or other controlled substances (including prescription drugs), or be under the influence of either on school property or at a school function.
  12. Possess or use weapons in or on school property or at a school function, except in the case of law enforcement officers or except as specifically authorized by the school district.
  13. Use any recording, broadcasting, and/or playback equipment or materials, including but not limited to video recorders, cameras, cell phone cameras, tape recorders, or videophones, in school, on school grounds, and/or at school events without prior teacher or administrator approval, except at school functions that are open to the public, unless otherwise prohibited,
  14. Loiter on or about school property.
  15. Gamble on school property or at school functions.
  16. Refuse to comply with any reasonable order of identifiable school district officials performing their duties.
  17. Willfully incite others to commit any of the acts prohibited by this code.
  18. Violate any federal or state statute, local ordinance or board policy while on school property or while at a school function.

 

B. Dress Code

Faculty and staff handbooks will set forth a general dress code which does not

infringe upon individual rights.  The school district does not generally prescribe faculty/staff and visitor dress while they are on school grounds or at a school function if fashion or taste is the major criterion. However, the district will impose restrictions when a faculty/staff member’s or visitor’s dress is clearly dangerous, given the activity in which they are participating, or so inappropriate as to interfere with the orderly conduct of a school activity, the learning process, and/or the teaching process.  In particular, faculty/staff are asked to consider that their dress can be construed as a model for students and careful judgment needs to be exercised in the selection of appropriate clothing and attire while representing the school district.

Individual faculty/staff and visitors have the responsibility for their own dress and

general appearance.  Faculty/staff and visitors are required to attend classes and activities in appropriate dress that meets health and safety standards and does not interfere with school district activities and/or the education of district students.

 

When necessary, faculty/staff and visitors will be asked to wear appropriate protective gear in certain classes and/or activities (i.e. home economics, shop, P.E., etc.).  Clothing and attire which have an expression (phrase, word or words) or insignia (picture, symbol, patch, or pin) which is obscene, sexually suggestive, or libelous (that is, which contains objectionable language, including insults, whether directed to themselves or others), or which advocates racial, religious, gender, age, disability, or sexual orientation prejudice is forbidden.

 

If found wearing such attire, faculty/staff and visitors may be asked to return home and change clothes prior to returning to the school.  For faculty/staff

involved in such an event, continued wearing of the inappropriate clothing and attire may lead to disciplinary action.

C.  Penalties

Persons who violate this code shall be subject to the following penalties:

  1. Visitors’ authorization, if any, to remain on school grounds or at the school function shall be withdrawn and they shall be directed to leave the premises. If they refuse to leave, they shall be subject to ejection.
  2. Students shall be subject to disciplinary action as the facts may warrant, in accordance with the due process requirements.
  3. Tenured faculty members shall be subject to disciplinary action as the facts may warrant in accordance with Education Law §3020-a or any other legal rights that they may have.
  4. Staff members in the classified service of the civil service entitled to the protection of Civil Service Law §75 shall be subject to immediate ejection and to disciplinary action as the facts may warrant in accordance with Civil Service Law §75 or any other legal rights that they may have.
  5. Staff members other than those described in subdivisions 3 and 4 shall be subject to warning, reprimand, suspension or dismissal as the facts may warrant in accordance with any legal rights they may have.

D.  Enforcement

The building administrator or his or her designee shall be responsible for enforcing the conduct required by this code.

 

 

When the building administrator or his or her designee sees an individual engaged in prohibited conduct, which in his or her judgment does not pose any immediate threat of injury to persons or property, the principal or his or her designee shall tell the individual that the conduct is prohibited and attempt to persuade the individual to stop. The principal or his or her designee shall also warn the individual of the consequences for failing to stop. If the person refuses to stop engaging in the prohibited conduct, or if the person’s conduct poses an immediate threat of injury to persons or property, the principal or his or her designee shall have the individual removed immediately from school property or the school function. If necessary, local law enforcement authorities will be contacted to assist in removing the person.

 

The district shall initiate disciplinary action against any student or staff member, as appropriate, with the “Penalties” section above. In addition, the district reserves its right to pursue a civil or criminal legal action against any person violating the code.

 

XVI.  Dissemination and Review

A.  Dissemination of Code of Conduct

The board will work to ensure that the community is aware of this code of conduct by:

  1. Providing copies of a summary of the code to all students at a general assembly held at the beginning of each school year.
  2. Making copies of the code available to all parents at the beginning of the school year.
  3. Mailing a summary of the code of conduct written in plain language to all parents of district students before the beginning of the school year and making this summary available later upon request.
  4. Providing all current teachers and other staff members with a copy of the code and a copy of any amendments to the code as soon as practicable after adoption.
  5. Providing all new employees with a copy of the current code of conduct when they are first hired.
  6. Making copies of the code available for review by students, parents and other community members.

 

The Board of Education will sponsor an in-service education program for all district staff members to ensure the effective implementation of the code of conduct. The superintendent may solicit the recommendations of the district staff, particularly teachers and administrators, regarding in service programs pertaining to the management and discipline of students.

 

The Board of Education will review this code of conduct every year and update it as necessary. In conducting the review, the Board will consider how effective the code’s provisions have been and whether the code has been applied fairly and consistently, in light of student discipline data to be reported annually to the Board, as well as feedback received from administrators, staff, students, parents, and community members.

 

The Board will appoint an advisory committee to assist in reviewing the code and the district’s response to code of conduct violations. The committee will be made up of representatives of student, teacher, administrator, and parent organizations, school safety personnel and other school personnel.

 

Before adopting any revisions to the code, the Board will hold at least one public hearing at which school personnel, parents, students and any other interested party may participate.

 

The code of conduct and any amendments to it will be filed with the Commissioner no later than 30 days after adoption.

 
District Reference  ,
 
General Reference 
 
 
Adoption Date 2002-07-08
 
Last Revised 2016-07-26



Series: Series5000     Sub Series: 5300 STUDENT CONDUCT     Policy Number: 5305          Printer Friendly (opens in new window/tab)



Title 

ELIGIBILITY FOR EXTRACURRICULAR ACTIVITIES

Policy Text 

ELIGIBILITY FOR EXTRACURRICULAR ACTIVITIES

 

The Board of Education wishes to promote the health, safety, and welfare of the District’s students, support their academic success at extended levels of achievement, and encourage the development of leadership skills outside, as well as inside, the classroom. The Board also recognizes that participation in extracurricular activities is a privilege and not a right, and that it has the authority to establish reasonable standards for eligibility for participation in extracurricular activities.    

 

Eligibility requirements will include academic standards, behavioral standards and, when appropriate, training standards.  These standards will be applied equitably to all student participants.  This policy, including the expected standards of conduct, will be included in the student handbook and posted on the District website. It is the responsibility of all participants to read and understand this information before the start of each school year and season. In addition, advisors/coaches will inform participating students of the application and scope of such standards.  In addition, all student participants, including athletes, should be informed that they have the obligation to act in a responsible manner because of the leadership roles they play in the school environment.

 

The following standards apply to participation in extracurricular activities:

 

1.         Students participating in any extracurricular activities need to be mindful of their academic responsibilities. Students are expected to carry a full academic program (five classes or equivalent and physical education). Students failing one or more subjects will be placed on an improvement contract that will require academic improvement, as evidenced by passing grades resulting from regular homework, attendance and participation. The goal of the improvement contract is to provide direction for the student in identifying what needs to be accomplished to meet minimum course requirements.  Students who do not meet the criteria of the contract will be ineligible to participate in extracurricular activities, including but not limited to meetings, rehearsals, practices, fund-raising activities, trips, games, contests, and/or other competitions. The procedure for implementing the improvement contract will be designed by the Building Principal, subject to the approval of the Superintendent of Schools, and shall include the reasons for failure, a plan for addressing or overcoming those reasons, and steps explaining how improvement will be achieved.

 

2.         Students must fulfill any obligations they may have to their school, such as detention, before they may participate in any extracurricular activity.

 

3.         Students are expected to attend school regularly and on time.  Any student absent from school for more than four of the day’s nine periods will not be eligible to participate in any extracurricular activity on that day or night. Students absent from classes due to an excused absence, as defined in Section II of the District’s Comprehensive Student Attendance Policy (Board Policy #5100), except for personal illness, can participate, with the prior approval of the school administration. Those students who choose to ignore the above will not be able to participate in the next function, game, trip, etc. Students leaving school due to illness will also be ineligible for that day. Students absent for more than four of the day’s nine periods on a Friday or a day before a holiday will not be eligible to participate in any extracurricular activity on Saturday, Sunday or a school holiday unless the absence falls under one of the exceptions described above.

 

4.         Any student suspended from school (in school or out-of-school) on a particular day(s) may not participate in any extracurricular activity, including sports, on  each of those days/evenings.  If a student is subject to a suspension on Friday and Monday, the student will not be able to participate over the weekend.   

 

5.         Students are expected to be good citizens and comply with the law and the District Code of Conduct.  Being in the presence of others who are involved in the illegal use of controlled substances or the use of illegal substances is potentially risky behavior that can lead to serious substance involvement as well as legal consequences.  Students are encouraged to be pro-active in avoiding such situations whenever possible and to remove themselves from these situations as soon as possible should they find themselves so involved.  Students are encouraged to use such instances as opportunities to exercise their leadership responsibility amongst their peers by modeling involvement in substance-free social activities and assisting their teammates and friends to disengage safely from potentially risky social activities that involve the use of illegal substances or the illegal use of other substances.

 

However, possession, use, sale and/or distribution of tobacco products, alcohol, and other controlled substances including performance-enhancing or other drugs, at school (including but not limited to the school building, school grounds, school vehicles or school functions), as well as off school grounds (including any party or other social gathering where underage drinking and/or illegal drug use is occurring), is a violation of this policy and will result in the following consequences:

 

 

PARTICIPANT

SUBSTANCE

FIRST VIOLATION

REPEAT VIOLATION

Athlete

Tobacco, Alcohol, or other Drugs

Ineligible for athletic competition for up to 20% of the season’s contests (rounded to the nearest whole contest)and successful completion of an educational component as designated by the building principal

Ineligible for athletic competition for the rest of the current seasonand the school’s next sports season, as well as successful completion of an additional educational component as designated by the building principal

Non-athlete

Tobacco, Alcohol, or other Drugs

Ineligible for all participation in the activity until successful completion of an educational component as designated by the building principal

Ineligible for all participation in the activity for five (5) months and successful completion

of an additional educational

component as designated by the building principal

 

 

            Disciplinary consequences will apply to both athletic and non-athletic activities for students who participate in both types of activities concurrently.

           

            For the purposes of this policy, a period of extracurricular ineligibility that occurs during one season/participation period will carry over to subsequent season(s)/

            participation period(s), including those in a subsequent year, as appropriate.  For middle school students, the time period for the determination of the first violation and repeat violations will be reset when the student enters high school.

           

            Information regarding an alleged or suspected violation of the District Code of Conduct and/or this policy regarding the possession, use, sale and/or distribution of tobacco, alcohol, and/or other drugs that is brought to the attention of coaches, other staff members and/or administrators will be reported as soon as possible to the building principal for his/her review and, if necessary, appropriate disciplinary action. 

           

            However, information regarding an alleged or suspected violation of the District Code of Conduct and/or this policy regarding the possession, use, sale and/or distribution of tobacco, alcohol, and or other drugs that is brought to the attention of guidance counselors, school psychologists, school social workers, or other mental health care providers in a clinical or therapeutic setting will be brought to the attention of the building principal for his/her review.  In order to support the appropriate rehabilitation and therapeutic support of the student, and to encourage open communication between students and counselors, information brought to the building principal in this context will not be used to pursue disciplinary action under this policy.

 

            Although suspension from participation in an extracurricular activity does not require a full hearing pursuant to Section 3214 of the Education Law, a student must be given the opportunity to appear informally before the building principal to present his/her side of the story as part of a general discussion of the conduct under review.   

           

            Consequences for a violation of the District’s Code of Conduct will be implemented concurrently with those for a violation of the policy on Eligibility for Extracurricular Activities.  

 

6.         Students will behave in a manner that best reflects themselves and the District. Abusive language, unsportsmanlike conduct, and/or violent and/or disruptive behavior will not be tolerated, and appropriate disciplinary action will be taken in accordance with the District Code of Conduct.

 

7.         Activity advisors and coaches shall work together so that students may participate in more than one activity during the same time of the year, whenever possible. However, it is illegal for students to participate in more than one interscholastic activity during the same sport season, unless a formal exception is made by the league.

 
District Reference  ,
 
General Reference 

Education Law §§1709(3); 2801
Bush v. Dassel-Cokato Board of Ed., 745 F.Supp. 562 (D. Minn. 1990)
Matter of O'Conner v. Bd. of Ed., 65 Misc.2d 40 (1970)
Matter of Wilson, 28 EDR 254 (1988)
Matter of Keily, 24 EDR 138 (1984)
Matter of Miller, 23 EDR 23 (1983)
Matter of Moore, 22 EDR 180 (1982)
Matter of Clark, 21 EDR 542 (1982)
Matter of Vetter, 20 EDR 547 (1981) 

 
 
Adoption Date 2009-08-18
 
Last Revised 2013-05-14



Series: Series5000     Sub Series: 5300 STUDENT CONDUCT     Policy Number: 5311.3          Printer Friendly (opens in new window/tab)



Title 

STUDENT COMPLAINTS AND GRIEVANCES

Policy Text 

A student filing a complaint or grievance alleging that there is an action affecting them which is prohibited by Title IX and/or Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act or the Americans with Disabilities Act shall be provided with information regarding the prompt and equitable resolution of the complaint or grievance. Furthermore, a student shall have the right to present complaints and grievances in accordance with the procedure free from coercion, interference, restraint, discrimination or reprisal.

Building Principals are responsible for ensuring that appeal procedures are incorporated into discipline codes, explained to all students, and provided to all parents on an annual basis.

Annual Notification

At the beginning of each school year, the district shall publish a notice of the established grievance procedures for resolving complaints of discrimination due to sex and/or disability to parents/guardians, employees, eligible students and the community. The public notice shall:

1. inform parents, employees, students and the community that vocational education programs are offered without regard to sex, race, color, national origin or disability;

2. provide the name, address and telephone number of the person designated to coordinate activities concerning discrimination due to sex and/or disability;

3. be included in announcements, bulletins, catalogues, and applications made available by the district.

The Superintendent of Schools shall establish regulations and procedures for presenting problems or appealing decisions which affect individual students, in accordance with applicable statutory requirements, and for the resolution of complaints or grievances which may affect the student body.

 
District Reference  ,
 
General Reference 

Americans with Disabilities Act, 42 U.S.C. §12133 
Title IX, Education Amendments of 1972, 20 U.S.C. Chapter 38; 34 CFR Part 106; 45 CFR Part 86
Rehabilitation Act of 1973, §504, 29 U.S.C. §794; 34 CFR §104
Education Law §3214

 
 
Adoption Date 2002-06-11
 
Last Revised 



Series: Series5000     Sub Series: 5300 STUDENT CONDUCT     Policy Number: 5311.4          Printer Friendly (opens in new window/tab)



Title 

CARE OF SCHOOL PROPERTY BY STUDENTS

Policy Text 

The Board of Education requires that all students respect and care for school property. Any damage to property should be reported to the main office or the appropriate teacher.

Acts of vandalism are crimes against the school district and the community which supports the schools. Students who willfully destroy, damage, or deface school property shall be subject to disciplinary action, as well as prosecution to the fullest extent possible under the law. When it has been determined that a student has damaged school proerty, that student and/or his/her parent/guardian shall reimburse the district for the value of the damaged property up to the limit of the law.

It shall be the responsibility of the Superintendent of Schools to establish and carry out written regulations addressed to acts of vandalism.

 
District Reference  ,
 
General Reference 

General Obligations Law §3-112

 
 
Adoption Date 2002-06-11
 
Last Revised 



Series: Series5000     Sub Series: 5400 STUDENT WELFARE     Policy Number: 5410          Printer Friendly (opens in new window/tab)



Title 

WELLNESS

Policy Text 

The Board of Education recognizes that children need access to healthful foods and opportunities to be physically active in order to grow, learn, and thrive, and that good health fosters positive student attendance and education.  Healthy eating and physical activity are essential for students to achieve their academic and physical potential, optimal mental growth, and lifelong health and well being.

The Rhinebeck Central School District is committed to providing a school environment and school experiences that promote children’s health, well-being and ability to learn by supporting healthy eating choices and physical activity.

Therefore, it is the policy of the Rhinebeck Central School District that:

  • The District will engage students, parents, teachers, food service professionals, health professionals, and other interested community members in developing, implementing, monitoring, and reviewing district-wide nutrition and physical activity programs and procedures.
  • All students in grades K-12 will have opportunities, support and encouragement to enhance their knowledge and skills to understand the benefits of a physically active and healthful lifestyle, as well as to be physically active on a regular basis.
  • The District’s child nutrition programs will comply with federal, state, and local requirements.  Child nutrition programs shall be accessible to all children.
  • District schools will provide nutrition education and physical education as an integral part of the curriculum to foster lifelong habits of healthy eating and physical activity, and will establish linkages between health education and school meal programs, and with related community services.
 
District Reference  ,
 
General Reference 
 
 
Adoption Date 2006-08-22
 
Last Revised 



Series: Series5000     Sub Series: 5400 STUDENT WELFARE     Policy Number: 5410-R          Printer Friendly (opens in new window/tab)



Title 

WELLNESS - REGULATION

Policy Text 

NUTRITIONAL EDUCATION

 

  1. School programs, including state and local curricula, should ensure that students in kindergarten through grade 12 receive nutrition education that provides the knowledge they need to adopt healthy lifestyles, including healthy eating behaviors.  Nutrition education should be emphasized by all school personnel and should include reinforcement of physical activity. 
  2. Nutrition education programs will take place both within the classroom and school dining facilities in collaboration with teachers, health service providers, and food service staff.  Students will receive consistent nutrition messages throughout the school.
  3. Staff with primary responsibility for nutrition education and physical education, including elementary teachers and school nurses, should be properly trained and should participate in appropriate professional development activities.
  4. The School District should provide educational information and encourage healthy eating and physical activity for families, both within the home and outside the home.
  5. Ongoing professional training for food service staff will be provided in the areas of nutrition and wellness. 

 

PHYSICAL ACTIVITY AND PHYSICAL EDUCATION

 

  1. All students in grades K-12 will have opportunities, support, and encouragement to be physically active on a regular basis.
  2. Schools should facilitate all students’ participation in moderate to vigorous physical activity through formal and informal programs, including physical education classes, which are in accordance with state and local guidelines.
  3. Schools should provide information to parents to help them promote and incorporate physical activity and healthy eating into their children’s lives.
  4. Students should be given opportunities for physical activity through a range of before and after school programs including, but not limited to, intramurals, interscholastic athletics, and activity clubs.

 

NUTRITION STANDARDS FOR FOOD AND BEVERAGES SERVED/SOLD DURING THE SCHOOL DAY

 

  1. Foods and beverages available during the school day should include a variety of healthy choices that are of excellent quality, appealing to students, and served at the proper temperature, in compliance with NYS Health Code Regulations.
  2. Food and beverage providers should offer modest portion sizes that are age-appropriate for elementary, middle, and high school students, respectively.
  3. The a la carte foods that are available will include a variety of choices of nutritious foods that are presented in an accessible and appealing manner.
  4. Classroom snacks and celebrations, especially in elementary schools, should encourage healthy choices.  Parents and families should receive guidance from the school on foods that are appropriate for such celebrations.
  5. All food and beverages made available in schools during the school day should be consistent with the current dietary guidelines, including increasing nutrient density, decreasing fat and added sugar, and moderating portion size.
  6. All food made available in the schools will adhere to the food safety and security guidelines of the Hazard Analysis Critical Control Points (HACCP) Plan.
  7. Food Service administrative staff will work with registered dieticians to evaluate and monitor food and beverage offerings.

 

OTHER SCHOOL BASED ACTIVITIES

 

  1. Schools will provide a clean, safe and enjoyable meal environment, providing adequate time and space for students to eat their meal.
  2. Food should not be used as a reward or punishment. 
  3. Withholding recess as a form of punishment is discouraged.
  4. Schools should encourage fundraisers, such as the sale of non-food and nutritious food items, that promote positive health habits

 

A District-Wide Health Communications Council will be formed to work with the schools to develop strategies to meet the criteria and guidelines set forth in the District Wellness Policy and Regulations.  Membership of the District-Wide Health Communications Council will include students, parents, teachers, health professionals, food service administrators, and building and district administrators.   

 

 
District Reference  ,
 
General Reference 
 
 
Adoption Date 2006-08-22
 
Last Revised 



Series: Series5000     Sub Series: 5400 STUDENT WELFARE     Policy Number: 5415          Printer Friendly (opens in new window/tab)



Title 

CONCUSSIONS AND CONCUSSION MANAGEMENT

Policy Text 

The Board of Education recognizes that concussions and head injuries are the most commonly reported injuries in children and adolescents who participate in sports and recreational activity and can have serious consequences if not managed carefully. Therefore, the District adopts the following policy and guidelines to support the proper evaluation and management of head injuries.

 

Concussion is a type of traumatic brain injury that occurs when normal brain functioning is disrupted by a blow or jolt to the head.  Recovery from concussion will vary. Avoiding re-injury and overexertion until fully recovered are the cornerstones of proper concussion management.

 

While District staff will exercise reasonable care to protect students, head injuries may still occur. Physical education teachers, coaches, nurses and other appropriate staff will complete a New York State Education Department (NYSED) -approved course every two years on concussions and concussion management to recognize the signs, symptoms or behaviors consistent with a concussion.  Any student exhibiting those signs, symptoms or behaviors while participating in a school-sponsored class, extracurricular activity, or interscholastic athletic activity shall be removed from the game or activity and be evaluated as soon as possible by an appropriate health care professional.  The athletic trainer, coach, school nurse, or other District employee in charge of or supervising the activity will notify the student’s parents or guardians and recommend appropriate monitoring to them.

 

If a student sustains a concussion at a time other than when engaged in a school-sponsored activity the District expects the parent/legal guardian to report the condition to the school nurse so that the District can support the appropriate management of the condition.

 

In the event of any concussion, regardless of where it was sustained, the student shall not return to school or activity until he/she has received written and signed authorization to return to activities from a licensed physician. Written clearance sent to the school district shall be reviewed by the school’s chief medical officer, who will make the final decision on return to activity including physical education class and after-school sports. All medical clearance forms shall be kept in the student’s cumulative health record. Any student who continues to exhibit signs or symptoms upon return to activity must be removed from play and reevaluated by his/her health care provider.

 

The Superintendent, in consultation with appropriate district staff, including the chief school medical officer, will develop regulations and protocols to guide the return to activity.  The Superintendent, the building principals, the athletic director, the athletic trainer, and the school nurses will meet to review this policy and associated regulations by July 1 of each year and will suggest adjustments as necessary.

 
District Reference  ,
 
General Reference 

Concussion Management and Awareness Act, Chapter 496 of the Laws of 2011

 
 
Adoption Date 2011-08-16
 
Last Revised 2012-08-14



Series: Series5000     Sub Series: 5400 STUDENT WELFARE     Policy Number: 5415-R          Printer Friendly (opens in new window/tab)



Title 

CONCUSSION MANAGEMENT REGULATION

Policy Text 

The following concussion management protocols shall be followed for all students in the Rhinebeck Central School District who display signs and symptoms of a concussionThis includes student-athletes as well as students in physical education classes and participants other school activities.

 

Prevention and Safety

Activities that present a higher than average risk for concussions include, but are

not limited to, interscholastic athletics, extramural activities, physical education classes, and recess. The physical design of the school district’s facilities and its emergency safety plans are evaluated on an annual basis to identify potential risks for falls or other injuries.  Recess includes adult supervision.  All playground equipment is maintained in good repair, and play surfaces are composed of approved child safety materials.

 

On Field Evaluation

According to the US Department of Health and Human Services - Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), “a forceful bump, blow or jolt to the head or body that results in rapid movement of the head” is cause to look for signs of a possible concussion.    During various activities, including but not limited to, interscholastic athletics, extramural activities physical education classes, and recess, participants demonstrating one or more of the signs and symptoms of concussion identified by the CDC, as outlined below, should be evaluated immediately by the coach, the athletic trainer, or the school nurse:

 

Signs Observed by Coach, Teacher or Other Staff Member: appears dazed or stunned; is confused about assignment or position; forgets instructions; is unsure of game, score or opponent; moves clumsily; answers questions slowly; loses consciousness (even briefly); shows mood, behavior, or personality changes; can’t recall events prior to or after hit or fall.

 

Symptoms reported by Student: headache or “pressure” in the head; nausea or vomiting; balance or dizziness; double or blurry vision; sensitivity to light; sensitivity to noise; feeling sluggish, hazy, foggy or groggy; concentration or memory problems; confusion; just not “feeling right” or “feeling down.”

 

If determined to have a possible concussion, the participant shall not be permitted to continue any activity until consultation with, and clearance by, a physician has occurred. 

 

Pediatric Concussive Injury

Concussions in the pediatric and adult individuals differ. Children are not "little adults." They are actively developing organisms who respond differently, have different needs, and face different expectations after injury. An appreciation of these differences and their implications is crucial for providing optimal care to the young athlete or participant after concussion. Children (ages 5-18 years old) should not be returned to playing, training or

 

 

other physical activity until they are clinically completely symptom-free. Because of the physiological response during childhood to head trauma, a conservative return-to-play approach is recommended.

 

The Nature of Concussive Head Injury

1.      Concussions may be caused either by a direct blow to the head, face or neck, or elsewhere on the body, with an impulse-like force transmitted to the head.

2.      Concussions typically result in the rapid onset of short-lived impairment of neurologic function that resolves spontaneously.

3.      Concussions may result in neuropathological changes, but the acute clinical symptoms largely reflect a functional disturbance rather than structural changes.

4.      Concussions result in a graded set of clinical syndromes that may or may not involve loss of consciousness. Resolution of the clinical and cognitive symptoms typically follows a sequential course.

5.      Concussion is typically associated with grossly normal structural neuroimaging studies.

 

Grading Concussions

Simple concussion refers to an injury that progressively resolves without complication over 7-10 days. Simple concussions represent the most common form of this injury. Simple concussions can be managed appropriately by primary care physicians or by certified athletic trainers working under medical supervision. Management of a simple concussion includes rest until all symptoms resolve, followed by a step-by-step program of exertion before return to sport or other physical activity. All concussions mandate evaluation by a medical doctor.

 

Complex concussion encompasses cases where the participant suffers persistent symptoms, including persistent symptom recurrence with exertion. A complex concussion will typically have characteristics such as concussive convulsions, prolonged loss of consciousness lasting longer than one minute, or prolonged cognitive impairment. If a student exhibits these characteristics, the athletic trainer, coach, school nurse, or any other District employee in charge of or supervising the activity will call 911 and summon emergency responders.  The student should be assessed by emergency responders at the scene of the injury and immediately be referred to and managed by a physician with specific expertise in the management of concussive injury. Such experts may include sports physicians, sports neurologists, or neurosurgeons.

 

Concussion Management

A student should never return to activity while symptomatic. When a participant shows ANY symptoms or signs of a concussion, as outlined above:

1.      The participant will not be allowed to return to activity in the current game, practice, or activity;

2.      The participant will not be left alone; regular monitoring for deterioration is essential over the initial few hours following injury;

 

3.      The participant should be medically evaluated following the injury using the concussion checklist on the sideline, in trainer's office, or in the nurse’s office;

4.      Return to activity must follow a recommended medically-supervised step-by-step plan;

5.      A head injury warning sheet will be given to each student and the parent who picks up athlete;

6.      The student must be picked up by someone over the age of 18, preferably by the parent or guardian. The individual will not be released by themselves or with a

friend.

7.      A follow up call will be made later in the day/evening by the medical staff or the person who cared for the student to check his/her status.

8.      The incident must be reported to the nurse's office by the adult responsible for the student at the time of the concussive incident no later than the next school day and ensure that an accident report is completed.

 

Return-to-Play Protocol

On a proactive basis, the District will administer a computerized assessment to each student in grades 5 through 12 to collect baseline data on his/her neurocognitive ability.  (Computerized assessment currently is not available to the District for children under 10 years of age.)  Initial baseline testing will be followed by subsequent baseline testing every two (2) years thereafter. 

 

The student’s baseline and post-injury neurocognitive assessment data will be used by the school district’s physician, psychologists, athletic trainer, and other district healthcare professionals to assist them in assessing a student’s ability to return to activity after suffering a concussion.  

 

During the recovery period, in the first few days following the injury, it is important to emphasize to the student that physical and cognitive rest is required. Activities that require concentration and attention may exacerbate the symptoms and, as a result, delay recovery. Members of the District staff will be notified by the school nurse of a student who has been diagnosed with a concussion and made aware of potential issues and restrictions.

 

Return-to-play following a concussion involves the following six step process. This progression will be over 7-10 days for return to play, with a minimum of 7 days.

 

1.                  No activity, complete rest; once asymptomatic, proceed to next level;

2.                  Light aerobic exercise such as walking, or stationary biking; no resistance

training;

3.                  Sport specific exercise (skating in hockey, running in soccer etc.);

4.                  Non-contact drills, followed by a medical check by the school nurse;

5.                  Full contact training and/or exertional testing, followed by a medical check by

                         the school nurse;

6.                  Game play or full activity participation

 

 

With this progression, the student should continue to the next level if asymptomatic at the current level. If any post-concussion symptoms occur, the student should drop back to the

previous asymptomatic level and try to progress again after 24 hours. The student should be symptom-free without the use of any medication to mask the pain. The program and

return to play will be monitored either by the athletic trainer or the school nurse, as appropriate.

 

These protocols will be followed by all Rhinebeck Central School District health care professionals (athletic trainers, nurses, school physician), coaches and teachers who are responsible for returning a student to active participation after a concussion, as appropriate. The District’s concussion management/return-to-play protocol is to be followed even if the student presents a prescription and/or other note from his/her

primary care physician or emergency room physician authorizing a return to play or other physical activity sooner than required by this policy.

 

Any student who presents a medical clearance from his/her primary care physician will be started on the appropriate level of the District’s return-to-play protocol. Prior to the student’s return to full participation, the student will need to have the return-to-play form signed by the school nurse, who will solicit final approval from the school physician.

 
District Reference  ,
 
General Reference 
 
 
Adoption Date 2011-08-16
 
Last Revised 2012-08-14



Series: Series5000     Sub Series: 5400 STUDENT WELFARE     Policy Number: 5420          Printer Friendly (opens in new window/tab)



Title 

STUDENT HEALTH SERVICES

Policy Text 

The school shall work closely with students' families to provide detection and preventive health services. In accordance with law, the school will provide vision, hearing, and scoliosis screening. Problems shall be referred to the parent(s) or guardian(s) who shall be encouraged to have their family physician provide appropriate care.

Schools shall also provide emergency care for students in accidental or unexpected medical situations.

A permanent student health record shall be part of a student's cumulative school record and should follow the student from grade to grade and school to school along with his/her academic record. This record folder shall be maintained by the school nurse.

Communicable Diseases

To meet the responsibility to provide all students with a safe and healthy school environment, it is sometimes necessary to exclude students with contagious and infectious diseases, as defined in the Public Health Law, from attendance in school. Students will be excluded during periods of contagion for time periods indicated on a chart developed by the school nurse.

It is the responsibility of the Superintendent of Schools, working through district health personnel, to enforce this policy and to contact the New York State Department of Health and the County Board of Health immediately upon notification of an outbreak, even if one student, of a communicable disease.

Administering Medication to Students

Neither the Board nor district staff members shall be responsible for the diagnosis or treatment of student illness. The administration of prescribed medication to a student during school hours shall be permitted only when failure to take such medicine would jeopardize the health of the student, or the student would not be able to attend school if the medicine were not made available to him/her during school hours, or where it is done pursuant to law requiring accommodation to a student's special medical needs (e.g., Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973). "Medication" will include all medicines prescribed by a physician.

Before any medication may be administered to or by any student during school hours, the Board requires:

1. the written request of the parent(s) or guardian(s), which shall give permission for such administration and relieve the Board and its employees of liability for administration of medication; and

2. the written order of the prescribing physician, which will include the purpose of the medication, the dosage, the time at which or the special circumstances under which medication shall be administered, the period for which medication is prescribed, and the possible side effects of the medication.

Both documents shall be kept on file in the office of the school nurse.

The Superintendent shall develop comprehensive regulations governing student health services. Those regulations shall include the provision of all health services required by law, procedures for the maintenance of health records, and procedures for the administering of medication to students.

 
District Reference  ,
 
General Reference 

Education Law §§901 et seq. 
Public Health Law §§680; 2164
8 NYCRR Part 136

 
 
Adoption Date 2002-06-25
 
Last Revised 



Series: Series5000     Sub Series: 5400 STUDENT WELFARE     Policy Number: 5425          Printer Friendly (opens in new window/tab)



Title 

HYPODERMIC SYRINGES AND NEEDLES

Policy Text 

The district will not purchase, acquire, have under control, possess or use any hypodermic syringe or needle for instructional or other educational purpose unless the Superintendent of Schools or his/her designee has filed a certificate of need with the Commissioner of Education and with the State Department of Health, as required by the Education Law, on a form prescribed by the Commissioner.

Authorized use of hypodermic syringes and needles by district personnel shall be limited to actual educational demonstrations designated by the certification of need.

Certificates of need shall designate the individuals responsible for the custody and supervision of the use of such hypodermic syringes and needles. The person designated as responsible for the custody of such syringes and needles will provide for safeguards and maintenance of records of disposition of all hypodermic syringes and needles acquired or possessed by the district.

Any change in designated personnel shall be reported within 30 days to the Departments of Education and Health.

 
District Reference  ,
 
General Reference 

Education Law §811 
8 NYCRR §137.1

 
 
Adoption Date 2002-06-25
 
Last Revised 



Series: Series5000     Sub Series: 5400 STUDENT WELFARE     Policy Number: 5430          Printer Friendly (opens in new window/tab)



Title 

STUDENT PSYCHOLOGICAL SERVICES

Policy Text 

Psychological services will be provided by the district to help those students in need of such service. The district shall employ a certified school psychologist to perform such services. All persons directly or indirectly concerned with any case referred for psychological services shall handle all related information in a confidential and professional manner.

The School Psychologist shall have the following duties:

1. Preventing educational and behavioral problems through early identification and consultation.

2. Identifying special needs of children through consultation, observation, and other psychological and educational assessments.

3. Analyzing, integrating and reporting psychological and educational information about child behavior and conditions relating to learning.

4. Consulting with school and agency personnel, parents, other caretakers, and/or children and youth in planning, implementing and evaluating school programs and interventions to meet the identified psychological and educational needs of children.

5. Planning and managing a program of psychological services including:

a. pre-referral and assessment services;

b. early identification services;

c. intervention and counseling for children;

d. parent counseling and training; and

e. program evaluation and applied educational research.

6. Other activities as defined by state and local educational agencies.

 
District Reference  ,
 
General Reference 

Education Law §3602(32) 
8 NYCRR §100.1,2

 
 
Adoption Date 2002-06-25
 
Last Revised 



Series: Series5000     Sub Series: 5400 STUDENT WELFARE     Policy Number: 5431          Printer Friendly (opens in new window/tab)



Title 

SUICIDE PREVENTION

Policy Text 

In order to address the problem of adolescent suicide the Superintendent of Schools shall establish procedures for:

1. students at risk;

2. the aftermath of a sudden death or suicide;

3. providing inservice programs for staff;

4. the exchange of information between and among agencies for high risk students; and

5. the placement of suicide prevention curricula in the regular school program.

 

Suicide prevention programs may be planned in cooperation with a state or community mental health agency.

 
District Reference  ,
 
General Reference 
 
 
Adoption Date 2002-06-25
 
Last Revised 



Series: Series5000     Sub Series: 5400 STUDENT WELFARE     Policy Number: 5450          Printer Friendly (opens in new window/tab)



Title 

STUDENT SAFETY

Policy Text 

It is the district's responsibility to ensure the safety of all students in school buildings or on school grounds, and/or participating in school activities. The safety of all students shall be the responsibility of all staff members.

In case of accident or injury, students shall receive first aid from the nurse, teacher, or other trained employee nearest the scene. The nurse or teacher shall notify the parent(s) as soon as possible.

To ensure student safety, special attention will be given to the following:

1. maintaining a safe school environment through periodic inspection of the physical condition of all buildings and grounds;

2. observing safe practices on the part of school personnel and students, particularly in those areas of instruction or extracurricular activities which offer special hazards. Section 409-a of the Education Law and the relevant sections of the Commissioner's Regulations regarding the wearing of eye safety devices in shops and laboratories, etc. will be strictly observed;

3. offering safety education to students, as appropriate, in subjects such as laboratory courses in science, shop courses, and health and physical education; and

4. notifying the school nurse of all accidents. For every accident, an accident report must be completed and filed.

5. being conscious of suspicious strangers loitering in or near the school. The Superintendent of Schools shall notify law enforcement agencies if the circumstances seem to warrant it. Students shall be instructed to notify teachers, their parents/guardian(s), police or school officials of any suspicious strangers.

The curriculum and instruction that deals with student safety and welfare. will meet state mandates in the following areas:

1. fire and arson instruction;

2. bus emergency drills;

3. disaster planning and civil preparedness, including fire, emergency evacuation and lock-down drills;

4. substance abuse prevention;

5. driver education;

6. the use of safety devices;

7. energy conservation; and

8. environmental conservation.

Safety Measures

1. Fire drills are to be conducted on a regular basis and at least as often as required by law.

2. The Superintendent is responsible for a decision to close school or to evacuate the schools in case of emergency.

The safety and welfare of the children is to be the prime consideration in such decisions.

 
District Reference  ,
 
General Reference 

Education Law §§806; 807; 808; 3212-a 
8 NYCRR §§107.l; 141.10

 
 
Adoption Date 2002-06-25
 
Last Revised 



Series: Series5000     Sub Series: 5400 STUDENT WELFARE     Policy Number: 5450.1          Printer Friendly (opens in new window/tab)



Title 

SEX OFFENDER REGISTRATION NOTIFICATION

Policy Text 

In accordance with the provisions of the Sex Offender Registration Act, commonly known as Megan’s Law, local law enforcement officials are required to notify the district when a person with a history of sex offenses against a child is being paroled or released into the community. The purpose of this notification is to protect members of the community, particularly children, by notifying them of the presence of individuals in their midst who may present a danger. Consistent with its duty to protect students under its care, the district shall cooperate with local law enforcement agencies in this endeavor.

The Superintendent of Schools shall ensure the dissemination of any information provided by local law enforcement officials pursuant to Megan’s Law to all staff who might come into contact with the sex offender in the course of doing their jobs, including Building Principals, staff who issue visitors' passes, bus drivers, custodians, playground monitors, security personnel, and coaches. Such staff will receive a photograph of the parolee, as well as information about how to contact the parole officer. Groups which regularly use school facilities with children in attendance and parents of students will be put on notice of the presence of a paroled or discharged sex offender in the area, but will not be given personal information regarding the sex offender.

All staff requests for information provided by the law enforcement agencies shall be directed to the Building Principal. Requests for information from community residents shall be directed to the District Clerk.

The Superintendent shall establish a program to train students about the dangers of contacts with strangers, and will implement a plan for “being on the look-out” for sex offenders as a cooperative effort (e.g., in buildings, on school grounds, adjacent public streets, at bus pick-up and drop-off points).

This policy shall be disseminated at least once a year to all district residents.

 
District Reference  ,
 
General Reference 

42 U.S.C. §1407(d) 
Correction Law, Article 6-C (Sex Offender Registration Act)
Doe v. Pataki, 1998 WL 230955 (S.D.N.Y. May 7, 1998) (current injunction)
Doe v. Pataki, 120 F.3d 1263 (2d. Cir. 1997), cert. denied, 118 Sup. Ct. 1066 (1998)

 
 
Adoption Date 2002-06-25
 
Last Revised 



Series: Series5000     Sub Series: 5400 STUDENT WELFARE     Policy Number: 5460          Printer Friendly (opens in new window/tab)



Title 

SUSPECTED CHILD ABUSE AND MALTREATMENT

Policy Text 

The purpose of mandatory reporting is to identify suspected abused and maltreated children as soon as possible, so that such children determined to be abused or maltreated can be protected from further harm and, where appropriate, can be offered services to assist them and their family.

Pursuant to applicable law, any school official or employee who has reasonable cause to know or suspect that a child has been subjected to abuse or maltreatment will immediately report this to the Building Principal who will report the case to the New York State Child Abuse and Maltreatment Register, as required by law.

The report shall be made by telephone or by telephone facsimile machine on a form supplied by the Commissioner of Social Services. A written report shall be made within forty-eight hours to the appropriate local child protective service, and to the statewide Central Register for Child Abuse and Maltreatment.

School employees and officials will not contact the child's family or any other person to determine the cause of the suspected abuse or maltreatment. It is not the responsibility of the school official or employee to prove that the child has been abused or maltreated.

Any school official or employee who has cause to suspect that the death of any child is a result of child abuse or maltreatment must report that fact to the appropriate medical examiner or coroner.

In accordance with the law, any employee who fails to report an instance of suspected child abuse or maltreatment may be guilty of a Class A misdemeanor and may be held liable for the damages caused by the failure to report. The law grants employees and other persons who report instances of child abuse immunity in good faith from any liability that might otherwise be incurred.

The district will cooperate to the extent possible with authorized child protective services workers in investigations of alleged child abuse.

The school district shall maintain an ongoing training program which will address the identification and reporting of child abuse and maltreatment. Attendance at sessions of this training program shall be required of all district employees who come in contact with students. Attendance records shall be kept, and notations will be made in personnel files as to the dates of attendance.

The Superintendent shall develop, with input from appropriate personnel, a plan for implementation of such a training program, to be approved by the Board. In addition, the policy and regulations will be included in all employee handbooks and distributed annually to all personnel who are not covered under existing handbooks. The Superintendent will prepare and implement all regulations as are necessary to accomplish the intent of this policy.

A copy of this policy, along with the administrative regulations explaining the reporting requirements, shall be distributed to all members of the professional staff.

 
District Reference  ,
 
General Reference 

Child Protective Services Act of 1973, Social Services Law §§411 et seq. 
Family Court Act §1012
Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act,
20 U.S.C. §1232g, 45 CFR §99.36
Education Law §3209-a

 
 
Adoption Date 2002-06-25
 
Last Revised 



Series: Series5000     Sub Series: 5500 STUDENT RECORDS     Policy Number: 5500          Printer Friendly (opens in new window/tab)



Title 

STUDENT RECORDS

Policy Text 

The Superintendent of Schools shall be responsible for ensuring that all requirements under federal statutes and Commissioner’s Regulations pertaining to the confidentiality of student records shall be carried out by the district.

Annual Notification

At the beginning of each school year, the district shall publish in a local newspaper a notice to parent(s) or guardian(s) and students 18 years of age or older (“eligible students”) currently in attendance of their rights under FERPA and the procedures for pursuing them. The district shall also send home a bulletin listing these rights and procedures, which will also be included with a packet of material provided parents or an eligible student when the student enrolls during the school year.

The notice must include a statement that the parent or eligible student has a right to:

1. inspect and review the student’s education records;

2. be assured that the school district intends to limit the disclosure of personally identifiable information contained in a student’s education records except:

a. by prior written consent of the student’s parent(s) or guardian(s) or the eligible student;

b. as directory information; or

c. under certain limited circumstances, as permitted by FERPA.

3. request that records be amended to ensure that they are not inaccurate, misleading, or otherwise in violation of the student’s privacy or other rights;

4. file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education alleging failure of the district to comply with FERPA and its regulations; and

5. request and receive information regarding the procedure for exercising the right to inspect, review, and request amendment of student records.

The policy applicable to the release of student directory information (see 2. b above) applies equally to military recruiters, the media, colleges and universities, and prospective employers. Directory information includes, but is not limited to, the following: the student's name, parents' names, address, telephone number, date and place of birth, participation in school activities or sports, weight and height if a member of an athletic team, dates of attendance, degrees and awards received, and most recent educational institution attended. Parents and eligible students may choose not to allow the district to release directory information.

The district shall arrange to provide translations of this notice, where necessary, to parents and eligible students in their native language or dominant mode of communication.

 
District Reference  ,
 
General Reference 

Family Educational Rights & Privacy Act 20 USC 1232-g; 34 CFR Part 99 
Education Law §§2(13); 225; 301
Public Officers Law §87(2)(a)
Arts and Cultural Affairs Law, Article 57-A
Civil Practice Law and Rules §§2303; 2307
Matter of Board of Education of City of New York v. Regan, 131 Misc. 2d 514 (1986)
8 NYCRR Part 185
Records Retention and Disposition Schedules for Use by School Districts, Schedule ED-1 (1991)

 
 
Adoption Date 2002-06-25
 
Last Revised 



Series: Series5000     Sub Series: 5600 MISCELLANEOUS     Policy Number: 5610          Printer Friendly (opens in new window/tab)



Title 

EMANCIPATED MINORS

Policy Text 

A student who seeks to be designated an emancipated minor must provide proof of:

1. Residence

• If residence is rented, a statement from the landlord stating the name of the minor as a rentor and a rent receipt in the minor’s name.

• If residence is owned, a copy of the deed.

2. Financial Independence

• A letter from the employer stating the salary and hours worked per week.

• A statement of other financial means.

3. Parental/Guardian Release

• A signed statement from the parent or guardian releasing all financial support and stating that the student will not be claimed on federal income tax as a dependent for the year.

If at any time the above information is changed without prompt notification or proven to be false, the parent/guardian and/or student may be subject to nonresident student tuition charges.

 
District Reference  ,
 
General Reference 
 
 
Adoption Date 2002-06-25
 
Last Revised 



Series: Series5000     Sub Series: 5600 MISCELLANEOUS     Policy Number: 5620          Printer Friendly (opens in new window/tab)



Title 

PREGNANT STUDENTS

Policy Text 

Pregnant students will be encouraged to continue participation in the public school program. As soon as pregnancy is medically confirmed, the student and her parent(s) or guardian(s) should consult with the Building Principal and other appropriate staff to plan an appropriate education program.

A minor under 16 must continue her education though the end of the school year during which she turns 16. During pregnancy and the period of pregnancy-related disability which follows childbirth, a student shall be entitled to home instruction, upon the request and submission of a physician's note recommending homebound instruction. Every effort will be made to see that the educational program of the student is disrupted as little as possible; that available student health and counseling services, as well as instruction, are provided; that the student is encouraged to return to high school after delivery; and that every opportunity is given to complete high school. A pregnant student who desires to attend regularly scheduled classes prior to the time of childbirth may do so to the extent that her physician approves of such attendance. A minor under 16 must return to school after the period of disability that follows childbirth.

 
District Reference  ,
 
General Reference 

Ordway v. Hargraves, 323 F Supp 1155 (1971) 
Perry v. Grenada Municipal Separate School District, 300 F Supp 748 (1969)
Matter of Murphy, 11 EDR 180 (1972)

 
 
Adoption Date 2002-06-25
 
Last Revised 



Series: Series5000     Sub Series: 5600 MISCELLANEOUS     Policy Number: 5640          Printer Friendly (opens in new window/tab)



Title 

WORKING PAPERS

Policy Text 

All necessary working papers required of students will be processed by the guidance and health offices. The district will certify physical examination previously taken by students in school. Otherwise, students will be responsible for a physical examination from their personal physician and will need to bring proof of that examination to school for certification so that their working papers may be processed.

 
District Reference  ,
 
General Reference 
 
 
Adoption Date 2002-06-25
 
Last Revised 



Series: Series5000     Sub Series: 5600 MISCELLANEOUS     Policy Number: 5660          Printer Friendly (opens in new window/tab)



Title 

STUDENT GIFTS AND SOLICITATIONS

Policy Text 

Solicitiation of Students in School

Only those organizations granted approval by the Board of Education shall have permission to solicit donations and contributions from students. All fund-raising activities must be voluntary and in accord with the Rules of the Regents and the State Education Department's "Guidelines Relating to Solicitation of Charitable Donations from Children". No direct solicitation of students is permitted during school hours.

The following constitute permissible indirect forms of solicitation, and the Board has the authority to determine which, if any, forms it will allow:

1. the sale of tickets to a social, musical, or athletic event where a portion of the funds go to a charitable purpose;

2. the recruitment of students during school hours to participate in fund-raising activities to be conducted off school premises and/or when school is not in session. School personnel are permitted to hang posters or distribute flyers notifying students of these activities. However, school personnel may not act as a conduit and collect funds from students on behalf of a charity for which they recruited; and

3. the placement of a bin or collection box in a hallway or other common area for the voluntary donation of food, clothing or money.

Gifts from Students

Students are discouraged from presenting the school staff with elaborate gifts. Spontaneous inexpensive gifts will be allowed when reasonable to express gratitude. Letters of appreciation are always welcome.

 
District Reference  ,
 
General Reference 

NYS Constitution, Article 8 §1 
Education Law §414 
Rules of the Board of Regents §19.6 
Guidelines Relating to Solicitation of Charitable Donations from School Children, SED, January 1994
Matter of Schanbarger, 11 EDR 70

 
 
Adoption Date 2002-06-25
 
Last Revised 



Series: Series5000     Sub Series: 5600 MISCELLANEOUS     Policy Number: 5680          Printer Friendly (opens in new window/tab)



Title 

STUDENT FEES, FINES AND CHARGES

Policy Text 

Students are expected to exercise reasonable care in the use of school equipment. Students and/or their parents will be expected to reimburse the school district for any damage done to library books, textbooks or other school equipment due to misuse or negligence.

No charge is to be levied upon students for materials and supplies used in connection with the instructional and athletic program. However, fees may be collected for materials and supplies used in connection with student projects which become the personal property of the student when completed. Classroom teachers shall be responsible for maintaining a complete and accurate accounting of such fees and shall turn the fees over to the Business Office.

 
District Reference  ,
 
General Reference 
 
 
Adoption Date 2002-06-25
 
Last Revised 



Series: Series5000     Sub Series: 5700 SECURITY     Policy Number: 5751          Printer Friendly (opens in new window/tab)



Title 

VIDEO CAMERAS

Policy Text 

The Board of Education recognizes its responsibility to maintain and improve discipline and to insure the safety and welfare of its students and staff on school transportation vehicles, in school buildings, and on school property.

 

After considering and balancing the rights of privacy with the district’s duty to ensure discipline, health, welfare and safety of students and staff, the Board of Education supports the use of video cameras by the District on school buses, in its buildings and on school property to enhance the health, welfare and safety of students and staff on district property and to safeguard district facilities and equipment.  Video cameras may be used in locations as deemed appropriate by the Superintendent of Schools, in consultation with the appropriate District administrator(s).  Video cameras may be used to monitor student behavior on school buses, whether going to and from school, extra-curricular activities or events, as well as in school buildings.

Video recordings may be used for the purpose of evidence for disciplining of students or staff and any other purpose it deems appropriate. The district shall comply with all state and federal laws applicable to student records when such recordings are considered for retention as part of the student’s record.  All videotaped recordings are the exclusive property of the school district and may not be viewed, altered, or otherwise modified without the expressed permission of the Superintendent of Schools or the Business Official.

 

The Superintendent of Schools is directed to develop regulations governing the use of video cameras.

 

 
District Reference  ,
 
General Reference 
 
 
Adoption Date 2005-11-08
 
Last Revised 



Series: Series5000     Sub Series: 5700 SECURITY     Policy Number: 5751.0R          Printer Friendly (opens in new window/tab)



Title 

VIDEO CAMERA SURVEILLANCE REGULATIONS

Policy Text 

The following regulations govern the use of video cameras:

1.                   Video cameras will be used on school buses transporting students to and from school or extra curricular activities or trips at the discretion of the Business Official who is in charge of the transportation program.

2.                   The District will notify students and their parents/guardians, and staff at the beginning of each school year that video cameras may be used on school buses and in school buildings.

3.                   Video cameras will be used in locations in school buildings and on school property as deemed appropriate by the Superintendent of Schools or designee.

4.                   Staff and students are prohibited from tampering or otherwise interfering with video camera equipment.

5.                   Video recordings will be maintained as long as the district deems it necessary to do so and in compliance with the latest  records retention schedule.  Generally, video recordings will be stored for seven days after initial recordings, whereupon such recordings may be released for erasure.  Video recordings held for review of student incidents or for other purposes deemed appropriate by the district will be maintained in their original form pending resolution of the incident.  Tapes will then wither be released for erasure or kept, as necessary, as part of the student’s educational record or other district record.  All video recordings will be stored and secured to avoid tampering and ensure confidentiality.

6.                   The district will comply with the provisions of federal law regarding student records requirements as applicable in the district’s use of video recordings.  Video recordings considered for retention as part of a student’s educational record will be maintained in accordance with established student record procedures governing access, review and release of student and other school district records.

7.                   A written log will be maintained of the date the recording was made, the vehicle or area of the building videotaped, the name of the bus driver, if applicable, the date of viewing and the signature of the viewer.

8.                   Review of videotapes from buses will be conducted by the terminal manager of the bus company, the building principal, and the Business Official as deemed necessary.

9.                   Review of videotapes from buildings will be conducted by the building principal and assistant principals/dean of students.

10.               The Superintendent of Schools or designee may review any videotapes.

11.               Viewing of the videotapes will be permitted only at designated school sites, including the transportation office, school buildings, or central administration offices.

 
District Reference  ,
 
General Reference 
 
 
Adoption Date 2009-01-15
 
Last Revised