The board of education 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. 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.
II. Definitions (Return to top of page)
For purposes of this code, the following 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 teachers authority over
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, including administrative buildings, or in or on a school
School function means any school-sponsored events, trips or activity, before,
during or after school.
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 self or 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,
4. Displays, while on school property or at a school function,
5. Threatens, while on school property or at a school function,
to use a weapon.
6. Knowingly and intentionally damages or destroys the personal
any school employee or any person on school property or at a
7. Knowingly and intentionally damages or destroys school district
Weapon means a firearm as defined in 18 USC §921for
purposes of the Gun-Free Schools Act. It also means any other
weapon such as but not limited to a gun, BB gun, pistol, revolver,
shotgun, rifle, machine gun, disguised gun, 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.
III. Student Rights and Responsibilities (Return to top of page)
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. Ability to report concern or violation of their own civil
rights and right to learn.
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
strive toward their highest level of achievement possible.
React to direction given by teachers, administrators and other
school personnel in a respectful, positive manner.
5. Work to develop mechanisms to control their anger.
6. Ask questions when they do not understand.
7. Seek help in solving problems that might lead to discipline.
8. Dress appropriately for school and school functions.
9. Accept responsibility for their actions.
10. Conduct themselves as representatives of the district when
participating in or
attending school-sponsored events and to hold themselves to
the highest standards of conduct, demeanor, and sportsmanship.
IV. Essential Partners (Return to top of page)
All parents are expected to:
1. Recognize that the education of their
child(ren) is a joint responsibility of the
parents and the school community, through participation and
attendance at events
such as parent conferences, annual open school house and meetings
focused upon the childs individual needs.
2. Send their children to school ready to participate and learn.
3. Ensure their children attend school regularly and on time.
4. Ensure absences are excused for legal reasons.
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 teachers, other parents and
their childrens 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
B. Teachers & Staff
All district teachers & staff are expected to:
1. Maintain a climate of mutual respect
and dignity, which will strengthen students self-concept
and promote confidence to learn, and provide fair & consistent consequences.
2. Be prepared to teach.
3. Demonstrate interest in teaching and concern for student
4. Know school policies and rules, and enforce them in a fair
and consistent manner.
5. Communicate to students and parents:
6. Course objectives and requirements
7. Marking/grading procedures
8. Assignment deadlines
9. Expectations for students
10. Classroom discipline plan.
11. Communicate regularly with students, parents and other teachers
concerning growth and achievement.
12. Dress in a manner that is not distracting to the learning
C. Student Support Services
(Guidance Counselors/Social Workers/Psychologists)
1. Assist students in coping with peer
pressure and emerging personal, social and
2. Initiate teacher/student/counselor conferences and parent/teacher/student/
counselor conferences, as necessary, as a way to resolve problems.
3. Regularly review with students their educational progress
and career plans.
4. Articulate special needs and circumstances of individual
5. Encourage students to benefit from the curriculum and extracurricular
D. Principals & Assistant Principals
1. Promote a safe, orderly and stimulating
school environment, supporting active
teaching and learning.
2. Be responsible for enforcing the code of conduct and ensuring
that all cases are resolved promptly and fairly.
E. Superintendent (return
to top of page)
1. Promote a safe, orderly and stimulating
school environment, supporting active
teaching and learning.
2. Review with district administrators the policies of the board
of education and state and federal laws relating to school operations
3. Inform the board about educational trends relating to student
4. Work to create instructional programs that minimize problems
of misconduct and are sensitive to student and teacher needs.
5. Work with district administrators in enforcing the code of
conduct and ensuring that all cases are resolved promptly and
F. Board of Education
1. 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.
2. Adopt and review at least annually the districts code
of conduct to evaluate the codes effectiveness and the
fairness and consistency of its implementation.
3. Lead by example by conducting board meetings in a professional,
V. Student Dress Code (Return to
top of page)
1. All students are expected to give proper
attention to personal cleanliness and to dress appropriately
for school and school functions. Students and their parents
have the primary responsibility for acceptable student dress
2. Teachers and all other district personnel should exemplify
and reinforce acceptable student dress and help students develop
an understanding of appropriate appearance in the school setting.
A students dress, grooming and appearance, including hair
style/color, jewelry, make-up and nails, shall:
3. Be safe, appropriate and not disrupt or interfere with the
educational process for them or for others.
4. Recognize that extremely distracting garments are not appropriate.
5. Ensure that undergarments are completely covered with outer
6. Include footwear at all times. Footwear that is a safety
hazard will not be allowed.
7. Not include items that are vulgar, obscene, libelous or denigrate
others on account of race, color, religion, creed, national
origin, gender, sexual orientation or disability.
8. Not promote and/or endorse the use of alcohol, tobacco or
illegal drugs and/or encourage other illegal or violent activities.
9. Each building principal or his or her designee shall be responsible
for informing all students and their parents of the student
dress code particular to their building at the beginning of
the school year and any revisions to the dress code made during
the school year. The schools will define age appropriate
specific dress. School handbooks will contain additional
guidelines. Students who violate the student dress code
shall be required to modify their appearance by covering or
removing the offending item and, if necessary or practical,
replacing it with an acceptable item.
VI. Prohibited Student
Conduct (Return to top
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
4. Obstructing vehicular or pedestrian traffic.
5. Engaging in any willful act which disrupts the normal operation
of the school
community [including lateness].
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 or his or her
7. Computer/electronic communications misuse, including any
unauthorized use of beepers, PBAs, cell phones, computers,
software, or internet/intranet account; accessing inappropriate
web-sites; or any other violation of the districts acceptable
B. Engage in conduct that is insubordinate or disruptive
Examples of such behaviors insubordinate 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. Missing a class or leaving school without permission.
3. Failing to report to detention.
C. Engage or threaten to engage in conduct that is violent
Examples of violent conduct include:
1. Threatening or committing an act of
violence (such as hitting, kicking, punching, and scratching)
upon anyone attempting to do so.
2. 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.
3. Threatening or displaying what appears to be a weapon.
4. Intentionally damaging or destroying the personal property
of a student, teacher, administrator, other district employee
or any person on school property, including graffiti or arson.
5. Threatening or intentionally damaging or destroying school
district property, including electronic media.
D. 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. Spitting or biting
3. Stealing the property of other students, school personnel
or any other person
lawfully on school property or attending a school function.
4. Distributing material or otherwise 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
5. Discrimination, which includes the use of race, color, creed,
national origin, religion, gender, sexual orientation or disability
as a basis for treating another in a negative manner.
6. Harassment, which includes 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
7. Intimidation/bullying behavior, which includes engaging in
actions or statements that put an individual in fear of bodily
8. Hazing, 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 or possessing obscene material.
10. Using vulgar or abusive language, cursing or swearing.
11. Smoking a cigarette, cigar, pipe or using chewing or smokeless
12. Possessing, consuming, selling, distributing or exchanging
alcoholic beverages or illegal substances, or being under the
influence of either. Illegal substances
include, but are not limited to, inhalants, marijuana, cocaine,
amphetamines, heroin, steroids, look-alike drugs, and any substances
referred to as designer drugs.
13. Inappropriately using or sharing prescription and over-the-counter
15. Indecent exposure.
16. Initiating a report warning of fire or other catastrophe
without valid cause, misuse of 911, or discharging a fire extinguisher.
E. Engage in misconduct while on a school bus. (return
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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.
F. Engage in any form of academic misconduct
Examples of academic misconduct include:
4. Altering records.
5. Assisting, encouraging or coercing another student in any
of the above actions.
VII. Reporting Violations (Return to top of page)
It is important for all students to promptly report violations
of the code of conduct to a teacher, guidance counselor, 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 must report
this information immediately to a teacher, the building principal,
the principals designee or the superintendent. District
staff 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. All district staff who are authorized
to impose disciplinary sanctions are expected to do so in a
prompt, fair and lawful manner. Any weapon, alcohol or
illegal substance found shall be confiscated immediately, if
possible, followed by immediate 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 immediately.
The notification must identify the student and explain the conduct
that violated the code of conduct and constituted a crime.
Notification may be made by telephone, in which case a follow-up
letter must be mailed.
VIII. Disciplinary Penalties,
Procedures and Referrals
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 shall
keep in mind,
1. The students age.
2. The nature of the offense and the circumstances which led
to the offense.
3. The students 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 students 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,
discipline shall be consistent with special education regulations.
Students who are found to have violated the districts
code of conduct may be subject to the following penalties, consistent
with the students right to due process.
1. Oral warning
2. Written warning
3. Written notification to parent
5. Suspension from transportation
6. Suspension from athletic participation or social or extracurricular
7. Suspension of other privileges
8. In-school suspension
9. Removal from classroom by teacher
10. Short-term (five days or less) suspension from school
11. Long-term (more than five days) suspension from school [by
superintendent or board of education]
12. Permanent suspension from school [by superintendent or board
In all cases, regardless of the penalty imposed, the school
personnel authorized to impose the penalty 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
penalty in connection with the imposition of the penalty. Students
who are to be given penalties other than an oral warning, written
warning or written notification to their parents are entitled
to additional rights before the penalty is imposed. These additional
rights are explained below.
Teachers, principals [or designees] and the superintendent may
use detention outside of school hours as a penalty for student
misconduct in situations where removal from the classroom or
suspension would be inappropriate. Detention must be scheduled
as to insure appropriate transportation.
2. 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 principals attention by completing the bus
incident form. Students who become a serious
disciplinary problem may have their riding privileges suspended
by the building principal or the superintendent or their designees.
In such cases, the students parent will become responsible
for seeing that his or her child gets to and from school safely.
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 students parent will be provided
with a reasonable opportunity for an informal conference with
the building principal or the principals designee to discuss
the conduct and the penalty involved.
3. 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 students parent will be provided with
a reasonable opportunity for an informal conference with the
district official imposing the suspension to discuss the conduct
and the penalty involved.
4. In-school suspension (return
to top of page)
The board recognizes 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 provided such an object exists. 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 students 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.
5. 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 practices that involve the teacher
directing a student to briefly leave the classroom 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.
Time-honored classroom management techniques such as
these do not constitute disciplinary removals for purposes of
On occasion, a student's behavior may become disruptive. 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 three days. The removal from class applies to the
class of the removing teacher only.
If the disruptive student does not pose a danger or ongoing
threat of disruption to the academic process, the teacher must
provide the student with an explanation for why he or she is
being removed and an opportunity to explain his or her version
of the relevant events before the student is removed. Only after
the discussion may a teacher remove a student from class.
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
The teacher must complete a district-established disciplinary
removal 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 removal 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
Within 24-hours after the student's removal, the principal or
another district administrator designated by the principal must
notify the student's parents, in writing, that the student has
been removed from class and why. The notice must also
inform the parent that he or she has the right, upon request,
to meet with the principal or the principal's designee to discuss
the reasons for the removal.
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 student's
removal 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
The principal may require the teacher who ordered the removal
to attend the conference.
If at the 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 meeting must be held within 48 hours of the student's removal.
The timing of the meeting may be extended by mutual agreement
of the parent and principal.
The principal or the principal's designee may overturn the removal
of the student from class if the principal finds any one of
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 or his or her designee 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.
Each teacher must keep a complete log (on a district-provided
form) for all cases of removal of students from his or her class.
The principal must keep a log of all removals of students from
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 or
the chairperson of the Committee on Special Education that the
removal will not violate the student's rights under state or
federal law or regulation.
6. Suspension from school (return
to top of page)
Suspension from school is a severe penalty, which may be imposed
only upon students who are insubordinate, disorderly, violent
or disruptive, or whose conduct otherwise endangers the safety,
morals, health or welfare of others. 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 students
parents in writing that the student may be suspended from school.
Notice shall provide a description of the charges against the
student and the incident for which the suspension has been imposed
proposed and shall inform the parents of the right to request
an immediate informal conference with the principal. Notice
and opportunity for an informal conference shall take place
before the student is suspended unless the students presence
in school poses a continuing danger to persons or property or
an ongoing threat of disruption to the academic process. If
the students 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. The principal shall promptly advise the parents
in writing of his or her decision. The 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. 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 superintendents 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. 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 students
parents of their right to a fair hearing. At the hearing
the student 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 superintendents 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 (return
to top of page)
Permanent suspension is reserved for extraordinary circumstances
such as where a students conduct poses a life-threatening
danger to the safety and well-being of other students, school
personnel or any other person on school property or attending
a school function.
C. Minimum Periods of Suspension
1. Students who bring a weapon to school
Any student, other than a student with
a disability, found guilty of bringing a weapon onto school
property will be subject to suspension from school for at least
one calendar year. 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 students age.
2. The students grade in school.
3. The students prior disciplinary record.
4. The superintendents 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.
2. Students who are repeatedly substantially disruptive
of the educational process, interferes with the teachers
authority over the classroom, or who commit violent acts other
than bringing a weapon to school.
Any student, other than a student with a disability, who has
engaged in these behaviors shall be subject to suspension from
school for at least two days. The student and the students
parents will be given the same notice and opportunity for an
informal conference given to all students subject to a short-term
IX. 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 laws and
A. Authorized Suspensions or Removals of Students with Disabilities
1. For purposes of this section of the code of conduct, the
following definitions apply.
A suspension means a suspension pursuant
to Education Law § 3214.
A removal means a removal for disciplinary
reasons from the students 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 students
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 students 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.
2. School personnel may order the suspension or removal
of a student with a disability from his or her current educational
placement as follows:
a. 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.
b. 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.
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c. 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.
d. 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.
1. 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 seriousbodily injury,
except...[for] a pocket knife with a blade of less than 2 1/2
inches in length.
2.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.
3. 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.
3. 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 students current educational placement
that is either:
a. for more than 10 consecutive school days; or
b. 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 students disability, or the student is placed in
an IAES for behavior involving weapons, illegal drugs or controlled
C. Special Rules Regarding the Suspension or Removal of Students
1. The districts Committee on Special Education shall:
a. 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.
b. Conduct a manifestation determination review of the relationship
between the students 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.
2. 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.
a. The superintendent, building principal or other school official
imposing a suspension or removal shall be responsible for determining
whether the student is a student presumed to have a disability.
b. 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.
3. 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.
4. 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.
5. 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 Commissioners
regulations incorporated into this code.
6. The removal of a student with disabilities other than a suspension
or placement in an IAES shall be conducted in accordance with
the due process 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
7. During any period of suspension or removal, including placement
in an IAES, students with disabilities shall be provided services
as required by the Commissioners regulations incorporated
into this code.
D. Expedited Due Process Hearings (return
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An expedited due process hearing shall be conducted in the manner
specified by the Commissioners regulations incorporated
into this code, if:
a. 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
b. The parent requests such a hearing from a determination that
the students behavior was not a manifestation of the students
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 students 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 students
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.
2. 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
E. Referral to law enforcement and judicial authorities
In accordance with the provisions of IDEA and its implementing
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 students
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.
X. Use of Reasonable
Force (Return to top
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 to refrain from
further disruptive acts.
4. The use of physical force [corporal punishment] used for
the purpose of punishing a student is strictly forbidden.
XI. Student Searches and Interrogations
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 students parent before questioning the student.
However, school officials will tell all students why they are
An authorized school official may conduct a search of a student
and his or her belongings that is minimally intrusive, provided
there is reasonable suspicion.
XII. Visitors to the
Schools (Return to top
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 to the office of the
principal upon arrival at the school. There they will be required
to sign the visitors register and will be issued a visitors
identification badge, which must be worn at all times while
in the school or on school grounds. The visitor must return
the identification badge to the principals office before
leaving the building.
3. Visitors are expected not to take class time to talk with
4. 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
5. All visitors are expected to abide by the rules for public
conduct on school property contained in this code of conduct.
XIII. Public Conduct
on School Property (Return
to top of page)
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.
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 on school grounds or at school
functions that are obscene, advocate illegal action, are libelous,
obstruct the rights of others, or are disruptive to the school
5. Intimidate, harass or discriminate against any person on
the basis of race, color, creed, national origin, religion,
age, gender, sexual orientation or disability.
6. Enter any portion of the school premises without authorization
or remain in any building or facility after it is normally closed.
7. Obstruct the free movement of any person in any place to
which this code applies.
8. Violate the traffic laws, parking regulations or other restrictions
9. Possess, consume, sell, distribute or exchange alcoholic
beverages, controlled substances, or be under the influence
of either on school property or at a school function.
10. 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.
11. Loiter on or about school property.
12. Gamble on school property or at school functions. (per Policy
13. Refuse to comply with any reasonable order of identifiable
school district officials performing their duties.
14. Willfully incite others to commit any of the acts prohibited
by this code.
15. Violate any federal or state statute, local ordinance or
board policy while on school property or while at a school function.
16. Smoke on school property.
Persons who violate this code shall be subject to disciplinary
action/penalties commensurate with the severity of their infraction
as determined by principal or his designee.
The building principal or his or her designee shall be responsible
for enforcing the conduct required by this code. When the building
principal 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 persons 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.
XIV. Dissemination and Review (Return to top of page)
Copies of a summary of the code will be provided to all students
at the beginning of each school year.
Copies of the code will be made available to all parents at
the beginning of the school year.
All district employees will be provided with a copy of the code
and a copy of any amendments to the code as soon as practicable
A summary of the code will be made available on the district
The board 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 codes
provisions have been and whether the code has been applied fairly
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.