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Discipline Policy

SAFE SCHOOL ZONE / DISCIPLINE POLICY - JICD

Introduction
This policy replaces any previously adopted by the District concerning safe school zones, and pupil disciplinary procedures. It is intended to meet the mandatory legal requirements of the district to outline its disciplinary procedure and define certain sections of the law that afford discretion on the part of the board and administration.

I. Definitions
(a) Expulsion means a permanent denial of a pupil’s right to attend school.
(b) School day means:
  • for a pupil who takes the school bus, the time period beginning when a pupil boards the bus in the morning to the time when a pupil disembarks from the bus in the afternoon; and
  • for a pupil who walks to school or arrives by private car the time period beginning when the pupil arrives on the school grounds to the time when the pupil leaves the school grounds.

(c) School property means all real property, physical plant and equipment used for school purposes, including but not limited to school playgrounds and buses.
(d) Safe school zone means an area inclusive of any school property or school buses.
(e) Superintendent means the school Superintendent or a representative designated in writing as authorized under RSA 193:13,I.
(f) Suspension means the temporary denial of a pupil’s right to attend a school for a specific period of time.

II. Disciplinary Procedures:
(a) The following levels of discipline may be imposed upon a pupil by the School District when authorized by this policy:

  • Short-term suspension by a Principal that lasts between one and ten school days.
  • Long-term suspension which lasts longer than 10 days and which is authorized by the School Board or its designee after a hearing.
  • Expulsion by the School Board for a period determined in writing by the Board under RSA 193:13, II. Any such expulsion by the School Board may be appealed to the State Board of Education.
  • Expulsion by the School Board for a period of not less than 12 months under RSA 193:13, III. Any such expulsion by the School Board may be appealed to the State Board of Education.

(b) The following constitute the due process procedures which shall be followed at each of the five levels of disciplinary action described in this policy:

  • In a short-term suspension of a pupil by a Principal or Superintendent, the due process procedures shall include:
    1. Oral or written notice of the charges and an explanation of the evidence against the pupil.
    2. An opportunity for the pupil to present his/her side of the story.
    3. The Principal’s or Superintendent’s written recommendation for pupil action to correct the discipline problem.
    4. Written notice to the pupil and parent or guardian, if available, of any disciplinary action taken against the pupil.
  • In a long-term suspension or expulsion of a pupil by the School Board or its designee, due process procedures shall include:
    1. Written communication to the pupil of the evidence against the pupil and an identification of any witness to the alleged offense.
    2. The Superintendent’s written recommendation to the School Board detailing any disciplinary action options to be considered by the School Board.
    3. Written notice to at least one parent or guardian explaining the Superintendent’s action, which shall include at a minimum the written statements required by clauses 1 and 2 above.

III. Notification of Pupils
(a) The appropriate pupil handbooks for the applicable SAU #70 school shall contain a summary of RSA 193:13 and a summary of this policy. A copy of the Summary is attached as Exhibit A. Copies of the statutes and this policy shall be available in the principal’s office. Notice of the policy and the location of copies shall be displayed in a prominent place on each school’s notice board.

(b) Copies of the statutes and school policy will be given to all teachers and other school employees.

(c) Copies of the statutes and school policy will be given to any pupil being disciplined pursuant to its terms.

IV. Waivers, Appeals, and Review
(a) In the case of short-term suspensions by the principal, the pupil and/or the pupil’s parent(s)/guardian(s) shall have the right to appeal the suspension to the Superintendent of schools.

(b) In the case of short-term suspensions upheld and/or imposed by the Superintendent of Schools, the pupil and/or the pupil’s parent(s)/guardian(s) shall have the right to appeal the suspension to the School Board.

(c) In the case of expulsion, the pupil and/or the pupil’s parent(s)/guardian(s) shall have the right to appeal the expulsion to the State Board of Education. Any appeal to the State Board of Education must be filed within twenty calendar days of receipt of the School Board’s written decision and must comply with RSA 541-A and Ed 200 of the Administrative Rules of the Department of Education.

(d) In the case of expulsion pursuant to RSA 193:13, II and/or this policy, written application may be made to the Board through the Superintendent’s office no later than one month prior to start of each school year. The application shall contain a statement in the pupil’s own words explaining why he/she should be considered for readmission. The application shall be accompanied by at least one recommendation from a member of the community, such as a counselor, minister or employer who has observed the pupil’s behavior during the period of expulsion. The application shall also be accompanied by the Superintendent’s and building administrator’s recommendation to the Board, which may include conditions for phased readmission.

(e) Pursuant to RSA 193:13, IV, the Superintendent may, upon written application of an expelled pupil, recommend to the Board modification of the expulsion requirements of paragraphs III, (a), (4) and (5) above. Prior to the School Board’s consenting to such a modification, the pupil shall be required to submit to the Superintendent sufficient evidence in the form of letters, work history or other documents or testimony demonstrating that it is in the school’s best interest and the pupil’s best interest to allow a modification. In making such a decision, due regard will be given to other pupils and staff whose safety and well-being shall be of paramount importance.

(f) The Superintendent may grant permission to any pupil to bring a firearm onto school property in accordance with both state and federal law.

V. Reporting Procedures
(a) Any school employee or other person acting on behalf of the School District as a chaperone or volunteer who has witnessed or who has information from the victim of an act of theft, destruction, or violence in a safe school zone shall report such act in accordance with the provisions in the Memorandum of Understanding.

(b) No report pursuant to paragraph (a) shall be required when the local law enforcement agency has prepared a written report. Each school Principal shall notify the State Board of Education in writing whenever a written report by the local law enforcement agency supersedes the report required by paragraph (b).

(c) Pursuant to RSA 193-D:4, I.(b), the District will not report to the Hanover Police Department any simple assault involving pupils in kindergarten through grade 12 provided the District determines the assault did not result in serious injuries. The District will handle such simple assaults according to the District’s disciplinary policy, which sets forth circumstances under which the parents of the pupil(s) involved shall be notified of such assault.

(d) The School Board and the Police Department will, pursuant to RSA 193-D:4, I, (c) enter into a Memorandum of Understanding which shall govern the reports by the School District to the Police Department required by RSA 193-D:4. A copy of the Memorandum of Understanding is attached as Exhibit A.

(e) The District will report the theft of school property to the Hanover Police. Thefts of personal property will not normally be reported unless the parents request otherwise. The district will notify parents in all cases of theft.

VI. Pupil with an Educational Disability

(a) Any suspension or expulsion of a pupil who had been or is being evaluated to determine if they are educationally disabled as defined in ED 1102.31 shall be in accordance with ED 1119.11.

(b) If, under the provisions of Ed 1119.11(c), the special education placement team determines that the behavior resulting in the grounds for suspension or expulsion under this policy is not a direct result of the pupil’s educational disability, the pupil shall be disciplined under this policy as if the pupil were not educationally disabled.

(c) In the case of a pupil with an educational disability who is determined to have brought a firearm into a safe school zone without the written authorization of the Superintendent of Schools, the pupil may be placed in an interim alternative educational setting for the time periods authorized by the applicable Federal Statutes.

ADOPTED:
Dresden, 28 September 1999
Dresden, 16 June 2009