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TRUMANSBURG CENTRAL SCHOOL DISTRICT
Trumansburg, New York

SCHOOL CONDUCT AND DISCIPLINE

It is the Board's belief that each student should be treated as a person who is expected to be responsible for his/her own behavior. Proper conduct and discipline is necessary to assure an orderly environment in which each person may live and learn to his/her full capabilities in harmony with others. When self-control falters and self-discipline fails, outside intervention must be imposed to protect the rights of others. Discipline should be used to positively direct the behavior of a student toward established standards of conduct, judgment and the rights of others. Ultimately, the parents, school and community share in the expectation of helping students develop self-discipline and acceptance of responsibility for oneís actions in school and at all school related activities.

In the Trumansburg Central School District rules and procedures are established to guide students through constructive growth and into mature adulthood. Although the rules and procedures are understood to be generally the same throughout the 3 schools, it is important to note that they have been altered (appropriately) to fit the student age group within the building. They have also been designed in accordance with federal and state education law, commissionerís regulations, and the Safe Schools Against Violence in Education Act (SAVE) legislation. Parents, teachers and others responsible for the welfare and education of all students must cooperate to enforce rules and expectations that teach respecting and acting towards all with civility.

Conduct and discipline is most effective when it deals directly with the problem at the time and place it occurs, and in a way that is viewed as fair to the student. All rules and procedures need to be explained and understood by all in order to be effective. Before seeking outside assistance, teachers should first use resources at their disposal to create a change of behavior in the classroom. When the teacher has made every effort to bring about positive behavioral change, and has been unsuccessful, the student will be referred to the administration. Once done, the administration assumes the role of deciding what further action will be taken.

I. ROLES OF INVOLVED PARTIES

A. It shall be the responsibility of parents to act as follows:

1. Send your child to school as required by New York State Law.
2. Make certain your child's attendance at school is regular and punctual and that all absences are properly excused.
3. Insist that your child is clean, dressed in compliance with reasonable directives of school personnel, and in a fashion that will not disrupt classroom procedures.
4. Be sure your child is free of communicable disease and is in good health.
5. Guide your child from the earliest years to develop socially acceptable standards of behavior, to exercise self-control and to be accountable for his/her actions.
6. Teach your child, by word and example, respect for law, for the authority of the school and for the rights and property of others.
7. Know and understand the rules your child is expected to observe at school; be aware of the consequences for any violation of these rules; and accept legal responsibility for your child's actions.
8. Instill in your child a desire to learn; encourage a respect for honest work and an interest in exploring broader fields of knowledge.
9. Become acquainted with your child's school, its staff, curriculum and activities. Attend parent-teacher conferences and school functions.

B. It shall be the responsibility of students to conduct themselves as follows:

1. Take advantage of the academic opportunities offered at school.
2. Support and participate in school activities.
3. Attend school regularly and punctually. Excuses for absences or tardiness must be in writing and signed by a parent or guardian.
4. Be self-controlled, reasonably quiet and non-disruptive in classrooms, hallways, study areas, school buses, on school property and at school activities.
5. Be clean and dress in compliance with standards of sanitation and safety, and in a fashion that will not disrupt classroom procedure.
6. Be reasonable, self-controlled, and considerate in your relationships with other students.
7. Strive for mutually respectful relationships with teachers and other school employees.
8. Comply with the lawful directives of any adult employee of the school system.
9. Keep your language and gestures respectful and free of profanity or obscenities.
10. Respect private, public and school property.
11. Obey the school rules against use of and possession of alcohol, tobacco or drugs on school property or while attending school activities.
12. Be informed regarding student rights and responsibilities and comply with all rules and regulations of this Policy.

C. It shall be the responsibility of the teachers and staff to conduct themselves as follows:

1. Reflect a personal enthusiasm for teaching and learning and a genuine concern for the individual student.
2. Guide learning activities so students learn to think and reason, assume responsibility for their actions and respect the rights of others.
3. Participate in the establishment of school rules and regulations regarding student behavior; explain these rules to students and require observance of them.
4. Enforce school rules in classrooms, hallways, restrooms, school buses, on the school campus and at all school-sponsored activities.
5. Give positive reinforcement for acceptable behavior.
6. Demonstrate, by word and personal example, respect for law and order and self-discipline.
7. After exhausting personal efforts, refer to a counselor or administrator any student whose behavior requires special attention.
8. Demonstrate an understanding and sensitivity of the needs of children and their special educational requirements.
9. Inform parents regarding student achievement and behavior; and consult with parents whenever possible.

D. It shall be the responsibility of the Principal to conduct himself/herself as follows:

1. Create the best teaching-learning environment possible, exercising all authority assigned by the Superintendent and School Board.
2. Ensure effective communication with staff and students regarding the needs of children and their special educational requirements.
3. Organize school schedules and teaching assignments and require effective classroom management and instruction.
4. Take leadership in establishing reasonable rules and regulations for the well-ordered operation of the school.
5. Make these rules and regulations known to and understood by students, parents, and all school staff.
6. Receive teacher or counselor referrals of students with behavior problems; confer with these students; communicate with parents; and set up cooperative procedures for bringing about modification of the student's behavior.
7. Be fair in all decisions affecting students, parents and staff.
8. Demonstrate, by word and personal example, respect for law and order, self-discipline, and genuine concern for all persons coming under your authority.
9. Become acquainted with students by visiting classrooms and attending school activities.
10. Maintain open lines of communication between school and home.

E. It shall be the responsibility of the School Board, Superintendent, and District Administrators to conduct themselves as follows:

1. Maintain a well-trained staff at all levels.
2. Acquaint the students, parents, and community with what is expected of Trumansburg students.
3. Give full support to the staff charged with the responsibility for enforcing conduct and discipline in accordance with federal and state education law, commissionerís regulations, and the Safe Schools Against Violence in Education Act (SAVE) legislation.
4. Develop programs which provide for students with special needs.
5. Be fair in making the final decisions regarding those students whose behavior problems have been appealed to the Superintendent or to the School Board.
6. Become acquainted with the schools, staff and students by attending school activities.

II. STUDENT CONDUCT AND DISCIPLINE CODE

A. A student will be subject to disciplinary action when the student:

1. Engages in conduct which is:

a. Disorderly, i.e., intentionally causing public inconvenience, annoyance, or alarm, or recklessly creating a risk thereof, by:

[1] fighting or engaging in violent behavior;
[2] making unreasonable noise;
[3] using abusive or obscene language or gestures;
[4] obstructing vehicular or pedestrian traffic; or
[5] creating a hazardous or physically offensive condition; or

b. Abusive of the property of others, either public or private; or
c. Failure to follow a reasonable request of a school employee; or
d. In contravention of the rules and procedures established within each school building.

2. Endangers the safety, morals, health or welfare of themselves or others by any act, including, but not limited to:

a. Selling, using or possessing alcohol, drugs, or other controlled substances or drug paraphernalia;
b. Selling, using or possessing weapons, firearms*, fireworks, or other dangerous instruments or contraband;
c. Selling, using or possessing obscene materials;
d. Using profane, vulgar or abusive language (including ethnic slurs);
e. Smoking;
f. Gambling;
g. Hazing; Harassing; or threatening harm to others and/or the school;
h. Engaging in lewd behavior; or

3. Engages in any of the following forms of academic misconduct:

a. Lateness for, missing or leaving school or class without permission or excuse;
b. Cheating (including but not limited to copying, using unauthorized help sheets and the like, illegally obtaining tests in advance, substituting for a test-taker, and other forms of unauthorized collusion); or
c. Plagiarism; or

4. Engages in conduct that violates the Board's rules and regulations for the maintenance of public order on school property.

B. Possible Responses -- the range of responses which may be imposed for violations of the student disciplinary code include the following:

- verbal warning/reprimand
- written warning/reprimand
- verbal and/or written notification to parents
- counseling
- probation
- detention/restriction
- denial of transportation privileges
- suspension from athletic participation
- suspension from social or extra-curricular activities
- suspension of other privileges
- exclusion from a particular class
- assignment to an alternative education program
- Principal's suspension (not more than 5 school days)
- Superintendent's suspension (in accordance with Education Law 3214)*
- referral to outside authorities or agencies

*In accordance with the Gun Free Schools Act of 1994, the punishment for any student who is determined to have brought a firearm (as defined under section 921 of Title 18, U. S. Code) to a school shall be a suspension from school of not less than one year. The Superintendent may modify such suspension on a case-by-case basis.

It is the intention of the Board of Education that discipline be fair, consistent, and directed for the positive growth of the student. The above list of possible actions will be used by the teachers and/or administrators in a manner consistent with a fair and judicious philosophy. The list is not meant to be exhaustive, nor is it intended to be in any particular order. The Board's intent is that the school employee consider all relevant information before any punishment is given.

C. Initiation of a Student Disciplinary Proceeding

1. The principal will be charged with the duty to direct the investigation of an alleged abuse of this code as appropriate.

2. If the child has a disability, the Principal will discuss the intended disciplinary actions with the Chairperson of the Committee on Special Education before the discipline is meted out. If the discipline could result in more than 10 days out of program, the Chairperson will conduct a Manifestation Meeting within 10 school days to ensure that the student continues to receive all special education services as required under federal and state laws and regulations.

D. This policy and the Board's rules and regulations for the maintenance of public order on school property will be available and explained to staff, students and community periodically, as necessary. In order to insure the effectiveness of this student conduct and discipline code, the Board of Education requests the continuing assistance of parents in explaining and enforcing the code.

E. Through resolutions of the Board of Education, the Village of Trumansburg, and the Town of the Ulysses, the Trumansburg Central School District has been declared a Drug Free School Zone. This declaration allows for a doubling of the fine and/or punishment for anyone involved in the sale of a controlled substance.

III. RECOGNITION OF RIGHTS AND RESPONSIBILITIES

A. Trumansburg Central School District recognizes that the rights generally extended to individuals as citizens in our society must be upheld within the organizational and educational context of the school. It affirms the role of the school in promoting the dignity of the individual and in supporting activities which will lead to the responsible exercise of individual freedoms. The District recognizes that while individuals have rights, school officials have an obligation to establish and maintain reasonable and necessary controls. The District encourages not only the recognition of individual rights, but also the creation and maintenance of the necessary cooperative relationships between those who are involved in the educational process.

IV. PUBLIC CONDUCT ON SCHOOL PROPERTY

A. The maintenance of public order and the regulation of public conduct shall be carried out in accordance with Board of Education Policy CMA -- Regulations for Maintenance of Public Order.

V. EARLY IDENTIFICATION AND RESOLUTION OF STUDENT CONDUCT AND DISCIPLINE PROBLEMS

A. Pupil service personnel, teachers, and other staff will report a student to the building principal when they believe the student presents a conduct and discipline problem beyond their control. The principal will conduct an appropriate investigation of the report, for the early identification and resolution of the suspected problem. The principal may use appropriate responses consistent with the Student Conduct and Discipline Code section.

VI. ALTERNATIVE EDUCATION PROGRAM

A. No single form of educational program can be assumed to be successful for all students. When, in the school's judgment, a student's conduct raises a question as to the ability of other children to benefit from the regular school program, every effort will be made to provide an appropriate alternative program.

VII. PROFESSIONAL STAFF DEVELOPMENT OPPORTUNITIES

A. Continuing professional growth and increasing effectiveness on the part of the entire staff are essential for the success of educational programs and the effective application of this school conduct and discipline policy. In-service programs, to familiarize the professional staff with the provisions and purposes of this policy, shall be conducted in each school of the district by the principal or other appropriate administrator at least annually. The professional staff shall be encouraged to make use of available in-service opportunities. Such opportunities shall include, within budgetary limitations, special in-service courses and workshops, summer study grants, school visitations, and attendance at professional conferences and meetings.

The Superintendent will have the authority to approve released time for conferences and visitations, and reimbursements for expenses, provided such activities are within budget allocations.

Adopted: 12/16/85
Revised: 12/3/01
8/22/94
10/2/89