Policy 4303

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Code of Student Conduct 2016-2017

Chatham County Schools

All students shall comply with the Code of Student Conduct of the Chatham County Schools, state and federal laws, school board policies, and local school rules governing student behavior and conduct. This Code applies to any student who is on school property, including bus stops, who is in attendance at school or at any school-sponsored activity, or whose conduct at any time, place, or cyberspace, on or off campus, has or is reasonably expected to have a direct and immediate impact on the orderly and efficient operation of the schools or the safety of individuals in the school environment.

Student Expectations

Students are expected to be familiar with all rules of behavior in the Code of Student Conduct. Students are to assist in promoting a safe and orderly school environment. Students are encouraged to report to school authorities any serious violation of the Code of Student Conduct.

Violation of Board policies, the Code of Student Conduct, regulations issued by the individual school, or North Carolina General Statutes may result in some level of disciplinary action. Teachers and administrators are encouraged to utilize a full range of responses to violations of disciplinary rules, such as conferences, counseling, peer mediation, behavior contracts, instruction in conflict resolution and anger management, detention, academic interventions, community services, and other similar tools that do not remove a student from the classroom or school building, in addition to disciplinary consequences, to accomplish a positive change in student behavior.

When, after considering potential mitigating factors the principal determines that a student’s behavior warrants an out-of school suspension, the principal may impose a short-term suspension (ten (10) days or less) or, for more serious violations of the Code of Student Conduct, may recommend a long-term suspension (greater than ten (10) days), a 365- day suspension, or expulsion, to the extent permitted by law and this policy. The Superintendent must approve any suspensions of greater than ten (10) days. The Board of Education must approve any expulsion from school based on a recommendation of both the principal and the superintendent. Under state law, if a student in grades K-12 brings a firearm onto school property, the student shall be subject to a 365-day suspension from school.

The Code of Student Conduct rules are leveled, indicating the severity of violation and type of consequence.

Level I – Level I rule violations are less serious and generally result in in-school interventions or out-of-school suspensions of no more than five days for first violations. Short-term suspensions are available for subsequent infractions, but are not required. Long-term suspensions are not an option. Any short-term suspension for truancy or tardiness shall not exceed two (2) school days.

Level II – Level II rule violations involve more serious misconduct that generally warrant short-term suspension for students in middle or high school, and may warrant short-term suspension with elementary school students. Principals may recommend a long-term suspension based upon the presence of aggravating factors regarding the severity of the violation and/or safety concerns.

Level III – Level III rule violations are those infractions that either threaten the safety of students, staff, or school visitors or threaten to substantially disrupt the educational environment, and support long-term suspension. The principal may enact a short-term suspension based on the presence of mitigating factors.

Level IV – Level IV is limited to the possession of a firearm or destructive device on educational property, an infraction under both federal and state law mandates a 365-day suspension.

Level V – Level V allows for expulsion of a student, as provided by state statute, for a violation of the Code of Student Conduct, if the student is fourteen (14) years of age or older and the student’s behavior indicates that his/her continued presence in school constitutes a clear threat to the safety of other students or employees and the Board determines there is no appropriate alternative education program. Additionally, any student who is a registered sex offender under N.C. General Statutes 14-208 may be expelled.

C. RULES OF CONDUCT (After each offense is a suggested range of consequences. Principals have discretion to implement or recommend consequences above or below those suggested, but in no case shall a long-term suspension be given for a level I violation only.)

LEVEL I – In-School Discipline or Possible Short-Term Suspension Only

I-1 Disrespect/Noncompliance – Students shall comply with all directions and exhibit appropriate respect toward school personnel and volunteers. Inappropriate conduct includes, but is not limited to, verbal, nonverbal, or physical conduct showing disrespect and horseplay.

Suggested Consequences:

K-5

• First offense: Warning to 1 day ISS

• Second offense: 1 day ISS to 1 day OSS

• Third offense: 1 to 5 days OSS

Grades 6 – 12

• First offense: Up to 3 days OSS

• Second offense: Up to 5 days OSS

• Up to ten days OSS

I-2 School/Class Attendance – Being tardy to class, failure to follow proper sign in/sign out procedures, skipping class/school, leaving campus without permission, or being in an unauthorized area is prohibited. Individual schools must create a plan for addressing incidents of being tardy and leaving school early. At no time may a student receive more than two days of OSS for this infraction. OSS should be used as a last resort as a consequence for violation of this rule.

Suggested Consequences:

K-5

• First offense: Warning

• Second offense: 1 day ISS

• Third offense: 1 to 3 days ISS

Grades 6 – 12

• First offense: Up to 1 day ISS

• Second offense: Up to 3 days ISS

• Third offense: Up to 2 days OSS

I-3 Inappropriate Language –Use of vulgar, profane, or obscene language or gestures is prohibited.

Suggested Consequences:

K-5

• First offense: Warning to 1-day OSS

• Second offense: 1 day ISS to 3 days OSS

• Third offense: 3 days ISS to 5 days OSS

Grades 6 – 12

• First offense: Up to 3 days OSS

• Second offense: Up to 5 days OSS

• Third offense: Up to 10 days OSS

I-4 Inappropriate Dress – Principals shall exercise appropriate discretion in implementing this policy, including making reasonable accommodations on the basis of students’ religious beliefs or medical conditions. Students are expected to adhere to standards of dress and appearance that are compatible with an effective learning environment. Presenting a bodily appearance or wearing clothing which is disruptive, provocative, revealing, profane, vulgar, offensive or obscene, or which endangers the health or safety of the student or others is prohibited.

Examples of prohibited dress or appearance include, but

are not limited to, the following:

a. Clothing that is sexually explicit or suggestive.

b. Clothing and/or jewelry that promotes illegal substances or alcohol.

c. Clothing, jewelry, and/or head wear that is decorated with profane words, vulgar language, gang related signs or colors, obscene pictures, images, or drawings, suggestive slogans, racial slogans, and/or other material reasonably likely to cause a substantial disruption in the school setting, including the Confederate battle flag.

d. No stomach or back should be showing at any time. Shirt straps should have three fingers’ width with no undergarments showing at any time. Lace-up shirts or shirts with lace down the sides are not permitted.

e. Shorts and skirts should be of a length that ensures undergarments or private body parts are not showing at any time, including while sitting or bending over. Lace-up pants or pants with lace down the sides are not permitted.

f. Sagging pants or pants that expose undergarments are not permitted. All pants must be worn at the hip.

g. Headwear is not permitted in the building unless approved by administration. This includes, but is not limited to hats, wave caps, bandanas, sunglasses, hoods, and spandex stockings.

h. No pajama and/or bedtime attire is permitted unless approved by administration.

i. Shoes must be worn at all times. Bedroom slippers are not permitted unless approved by the administration.

j. Students are not permitted to wear any adornment such as chains or spikes that reasonably could be perceived as or used as a weapon.

k. Students are not permitted from wearing any attire that is prohibited by Policy 4303, III-2 Gang and Gang-Related Activity. Individual schools are free to specify additional examples of dress or appearance that are prohibited at that school under the terms of this policy. If a student’s dress or appearance is such that it constitutes a threat to the health or safety of others, distracts the attention of other students or staff from their work, or otherwise violates this dress code, the principal or principal’s designee may require the student to change his or her dress or appearance.

Suggested Consequences:

K-5

• First offense: Warning

• Second offense: 1 day ISS to 1 day OSS

• Third offense: 1 to 3 days OSS

Grades 6 – 12

• First offense: Up to 1 day ISS

• Second offense: Up to 1-day OSS

• Third offense: Up to 3 days OSS

I-5 Wireless communication devices – The Board of Education recognizes that cellular phones and other wireless communication devices have become an important tool through which parents communicate with their children. Therefore, students are permitted to possess such devices on school property so long as the devices are not activated, used, displayed, or visible during the instructional day or as otherwise directed by school rules or school personnel. Wireless communication devices include, but are not limited to, cellular phones, electronic devices with Internet capability, paging devices, two-way radios, laser pointers, and similar devices.

Administrators may authorize individual students to use wireless communication devices for personal purposes when deemed appropriate. Teachers and administrators may authorize individual students to use the devices for instructional purposes, provided that they supervise the students during such use.

Although use generally is permitted before or after school, use of cellular phones and other wireless communication devices may be prohibited on school buses when noise from such devices interferes with the safe operation of the buses. In addition, elementary and middle school students who participate in afterschool programs are prohibited from using the wireless communication devices during such programs.

Any device possessed or used in violation of this policy shall be confiscated and only returned to the student’s parents/guardian. If a student uses a laser pointer in a way that reasonably could or does cause physical harm, the laser pointer may be considered a dangerous instrument and the student may be charged with violation of Policy 4303, III-3 and disciplined accordingly.

Suggested consequences:

K-5

• First offense: Warning

• Second offense: Warning to 1 day ISS

• Third offense: 1 day ISS to 1 day OSS

Grades 6 – 12

• First offense: Up to 1 day ISS

• Second offense: Up to 1-day OSS

• Third offense: Up to 3 days OSS

I-6 Trespassing – No student shall be on the campus of any school except the one to which the student is assigned without the knowledge and consent of the officials of that school.

Students who loiter at any school after the close of the school day will be considered trespassers. A student under suspension from school is trespassing if he/she appears on the property of any school or at any school sponsored activity during the suspension period without the express permission of the principal.

Suggested Consequences:

K-5

• First offense: Warning to 1 day ISS

• Second offense: 1 day ISS to 1 day OSS

• Third offense: 1-day OSS to 5 days OSS

Grades 6 – 12

• First offense: Up to 3 days OSS

• Second offense: Up to 5 days OSS

• Third offense: Up to 10 days OSS

I-7 Gambling – Students shall not participate in any unauthorized games of chance in which money or items of value may be won or lost.

Suggested Consequences:

K-5

• First offense: Up to 1 day ISS

• Second offense: 1 day ISS to 1 day OSS

• Third offense: 1-day OSS to 5 days OSS

Grades 6 – 12

• First offense: Up to 3 days OSS

• Second offense: Up to 5 days OSS

• Third offense: Up to 10 days OSS

I-8 Misconduct on School Vehicle – School transportation service is a privilege, not a right. Students at all times while riding a school bus or other school vehicle shall observe the directives of the school bus driver and shall comply with all provisions of this Code of Conduct. The following conduct while on the school bus or other school vehicle is specifically prohibited and may result in temporary or permanent suspension from school transportation services and/or from school (and, certain aggravating factors may result in school-level consequences in addition to a bus suspension):

a. Delaying the bus schedule.

b. Getting off at an unauthorized stop.

c. Failing to observe established safety rules and regulations.

d. Willfully trespassing upon a school bus.

Suggested Consequences:

K-12

First offense: Up to three days suspension from riding the bus

Second offense: Up to five days suspension from riding the bus

Third offense: Up to ten days suspension from riding the bus

Fourth offense: Up to the remainder of the school year suspension from riding the bus

In addition, any conduct on a school bus or other school vehicle, or a school bus stop, that is a violation of any other rule of the Code of Student Conduct may subject to student to other disciplinary consequences, as outlined in this Code of Conduct.

I-9 Unauthorized commercial activity – Students may not engage in commercial activity (i.e. buying or selling items) unless pursuant to an authorized fundraiser or with written permission from an administrator.

Suggested Consequences:

K-5

• First offense: Warning to 1 day ISS

• Second offense: 1 day ISS to 1 day OSS

• Third offense: 1-day OSS to 5 days OSS

Grades 6 – 12

• First offense: Up to 3 days OSS

• Second offense: Up to 5 days OSS

• Third offense: Up to 10 days OSS

I-10 1-to-1 Student Laptop Program – Students must adhere to the guidelines found in the 1-to-1 Parent Student Laptop Handbook.

Suggested Consequences:

Intentional Laptop or other Computer Damage

• First offense: Up to 1-day OSS and loss of access to laptop at home for semester

• Second offense: Up to 3 days OSS and loss of access to laptop at home for remainder of year

• Third offense: Up to 5 days OSS and loss of access to laptop at home for remainder of

year

Software or Hardware Modification

• First offense: Loss of access to laptop at home for semester

• Second offense: 1 day ISS and loss of access to laptop at home for remainder of year

• Third offense: Up to 5 days OSS and loss of access to laptop at home for remainder of the year

Level II – More serious misconduct that generally warrant short-term suspension for students in middle or high school, and may warrant short-term suspension with elementary school students. Principals may recommend a long-term suspension based upon the presence of aggravating factors regarding the severity of the violation and/or safety concerns.

II-1 Integrity – All students are expected to demonstrate integrity, civility, responsibility, and self-control, which are critical for establishing and maintaining a safe, orderly, and inviting school environment. Any student who engages in or attempts to engage in cheating, plagiarism, falsification, violation of software copyright laws, or violation of computer access shall be subject to disciplinary action. The following actions are specifically prohibited:

1. Cheating: giving or receiving of any unauthorized assistance on academic work.

2. Plagiarism: copying the language, structure, or idea of another and representing it as one's own work.

3. Falsification: verbal or written statement of any untruth.

4. Violation of software copyright laws: unauthorized duplication of computer software (computer piracy), printed material related to computer software, and/or the use of pirated computer software.

Suggested Consequences:

K-5

To be determined at the school level

Grades 6 – 8

• First offense: Up to one day ISS and re-do assignment or complete alternate assignment

• Second offense: Two days ISS and re-do assignment or complete alternate assignment

• Third offense: Three days OSS and re-do assignment or complete alternate assignment

Grades 9-12

• First offense: One day ISS and a “0” on the assignment

• Second offense: Two days ISS and a “0” on the assignment

• Third offense: Three days OSS and a “0” on the assignment

Additionally, whenever a student engages in cheating, plagiarism, or falsification, the student shall receive a zero on the assignment and shall be referred to a counselor.

II-2 Tobacco – No student shall use, possess, or display any tobacco product. This restriction applies when the student is anywhere on school system property or at any school-sponsored activity as a visitor or spectator. The following definitions apply for purposes of this policy:

a. Tobacco Product: cigarettes, e-cigarettes, cigars, pipes, chewing tobacco, snuff, and any other items containing or reasonably resembling tobacco or tobacco products.

b. Tobacco Use: smoking, chewing, dipping, or any other use of tobacco products.

c. Display: having any tobacco product in a location or position that is visible to students or school personnel

The exceptions to this policy are as follows:

a. The display of tobacco products does not extend to display that has a legitimate instructional or pedagogical purpose and is approved by a teacher or school administrator; and

b. A principal may permit tobacco products to be included in instructional or research activities in the school building if the activity is conducted or supervised by the faculty member overseeing the instruction or research and the activity does not involve smoking, chewing, or otherwise ingesting the tobacco product.

Suggested Consequences:

• First offense: Detention to 1-day OSS and a conference with the student’s parents/guardians. The student will be provided with information concerning the harmful effects of smoking.

• Second offense: Up to 3 days OSS

• Third offense: Up to 5 days OSS

II-3 Inappropriate Literature, Illustrations, or Images – The possession of literature, illustrations, or images which significantly disrupts the educational process or which are obscene is prohibited.

Suggested Consequences:

K-5

• First offense: Up to 1 day ISS

• Second offense: 1 day ISS to 3 days OSS

• Third offense: 3 days ISS to 5 days OSS

Grades 6 – 12

• First offense: Up to 1-day OSS

• Second offense: Up to 3 days OSS

• Third offense: Up to 10 days OSS, possible long-term suspension with aggravating factors.

II-4 Violation of Technology Responsible Use Policy – No student shall engage in conduct prohibited by Policy 3225/7320 (Technology Responsible Use) (Please refer to the entire policy).

Possible consequences include, but are not limited to:

• After school detention

• ISS

• OSS

• Loss of computer access laptop up to a semester

  • Loss of district network access up to a semester

II-5 Abusive, Harassing, or Seriously Disrespectful Language – The use of any

language, whether written, oral, or electronic, which is abusive, harassing,

or seriously disrespectful and which disrupts the classroom or school environment is specifically prohibited.

Suggested Consequences:

K-5

• First offense: Up to 3 days ISS

• Second offense: 1 day ISS to 5 days OSS

• Third offense: 3 days ISS to 10 days OSS

Grades 6 – 12

• First offense: Up to 3 days OSS

• Second offense: Up to 10 days OSS

• Third offense: Up to 10 days OSS, possible long-term suspension with aggravating factors.

II-6 Class/Activity Disturbance – Any physical or verbal disturbance which occurs within the school environment and which interrupts or interferes with teaching or orderly conduct of class/school activities is prohibited. Horseplay is considered a disturbance to the school environment.

Suggested Consequences:

K-5

• First offense: Up to 3 days ISS

• Second offense: 1 day ISS to 5 days OSS

• Third offense: 3 days ISS to 10 days OSS

Grades 6 – 12

• First offense: Up to 3 days OSS

• Second offense: Up to 10 days OSS

• Third offense: Up to 10 days OSS, possible long-term suspension with aggravating factors.

II-7 School Disturbance – No student shall, by use of passive resistance, noise, threat, fear, intimidation, coercion, force, violence, or any other form of conduct, cause the disruption of any lawful function, mission, or process of the school.

Suggested Consequences:

K-5

• First offense: Up to 1 day ISS

• Second offense: 1 day ISS to 3 day OSS

• Third offense: 3 days ISS to 5 days OSS

Grades 6 – 12

• First offense: Up to 3 days OSS

• Second offense: Up to 5 days OSS

• Third offense: Up to 10 days OSS, possible long-term suspension with aggravating factors.

II-8 School Transportation Disturbance – Any physical or verbal disturbance which occurs on school transportation and which interrupts or interferes with the safe and orderly operation of the vehicle is prohibited.

Suggested Consequences:

K-5

• First offense: Up to 1 day ISS

• Second offense: 1 day ISS to 3 day OSS

• Third offense: 3 days ISS to 5 days OSS

Grades 6 – 12

• First offense: Up to 3 days OSS

• Second offense: Up to 5 days OSS

• Third offense: Up to 10 days OSS, possible long-term suspension with aggravating factors.

II-9 Disruptive Protest – No student on school property or on property adjacent thereto shall engage in any protest, march, picket, sit-in, boycott, walkout, or other activity which has as its purpose the disruption of any lawful function, mission, or process of the school, or in fact creates such a disruption.

Suggested Consequences:

K-5

• First offense: Up to 1 day ISS

• Second offense: 1 day ISS to 3 day OSS

• Third offense: 3 days ISS to 5 days OSS

Grades 6 – 12

• First offense: Up to 3 days OSS

• Second offense: Up to 5 days OSS

• Third offense: Up to 10 days OSS, possible long-term suspension with aggravating factors.

II-10 False Fire Alarm – No student shall set off, attempt to set off, or aid and abet anyone in giving a false fire alarm. No student shall interfere with or damage any part of a fire alarm, fire detection, smoke detection, fire extinguishing system, or emergency escape system.

Suggested Consequences:

K-5

• First offense: Up to 1-day OSS

• Second offense: 1-day OSS to 3 days OSS

• Third offense: 3 days OSS to 5 days OSS

Grades 6 – 12

• First offense: Up to 5 days OSS

• Second offense: Up to 10 days OSS

• Third offense: Up to 10 days OSS, possible long-term suspension with aggravating factors.

II-11 Fire Setting/Incendiary Material – The possession of any incendiary material (including but not limited to matches, lighters, or lighter fluid) or the use of any material reasonably likely to result in a fire on school property is prohibited.

Suggested Consequences:

K-5

• First offense: Up to 1-day OSS

• Second offense: 3 days ISS to 3 days OSS

• Third offense: 3 days OSS to 5 days OSS

Grades 6 – 12

• First offense: Up to 3 days OSS

• Second offense: Up to 5 days OSS

• Third offense: Up to 10 days OSS, possible long-term suspension with aggravating factors.

II-12 Property Damage – No student shall intentionally damage or attempt to damage or deface school property, another’s personal property, or private property.

Suggested Consequences:

K-5

• First offense: Up to 1-day OSS

• Second offense: 1 day ISS to 3 days OSS

• Third offense: 3 days ISS to 5 days OSS

Grades 6 – 12

• First offense: Up to 5 days OSS

• Second offense: Up to 10 days OSS

• Third offense: Up to 10 days OSS, possible long-term suspension with aggravating factors.

II-13 Theft – No student shall steal, attempt to steal, or knowingly be in possession of stolen property, including cafeteria food.

Suggested Consequences:

K-5

• First offense: Warning to 1-day OSS

• Second offense: 1 day ISS to 3 days OSS

• Third offense: 3 days ISS to 5 days OSS

Grades 6 – 12

• First offense: Up to 5 days OSS

• Second offense: Up to 10 days OSS

• Third offense: Up to 10 days OSS, possible long-term suspension with aggravating factors.

II-14 Extortion – No student shall attempt to extort money, personal property, or personal services.

Suggested Consequences:

K-5

• First offense: Warning to 1-day OSS

• Second offense: 1 day ISS to 3 days OSS

• Third offense: 3 days ISS to 5 days OSS

Grades 6 – 12

• First offense: Up to 3 days OSS

• Second offense: Up to 5 days OSS

• Third offense: Up to 10 days OSS, possible long-term suspension with aggravating factors.

II-15 Indecent Exposure/Sexual Behavior – No student shall engage in behavior which is indecent, overly affectionate, or of a sexual nature.

Suggested Consequences:

K-5

• First offense: Warning to 1-day OSS

• Second offense: 1 day ISS to 3 days OSS

• Third offense: 3 days ISS to 5 days OSS

Grades 6 – 12

• First offense: Up to 3 days OSS

• Second offense: Up to 5 days OSS

• Third offense: Up to 10 days OSS, possible long-term suspension with aggravating factors.

II-165 Discrimination/Harassment/Bullying – No student shall engage in conduct prohibited by Policies 1710/4021/7230 (Prohibition Against Discrimination, Harassment and Bullying) (Please refer to the entire policies).

Note: A student who is convicted of cyber-bullying a school employee shall be transferred to another school within the district. If there is no other appropriate school within the district, the student shall be transferred to a different class or assigned to a teacher who was not involved as the victim of the cyber-bullying. The superintendent may modify, in writing, the required transfer of an individual student on a case-by-case basis.

Suggested Consequences:

K-5

• First offense: Warning to 1-day OSS

• Second offense: 1 day ISS to 3 days OSS

• Third offense: 3 days ISS to 5 days OSS

Grades 6 – 12

• First offense: Up to 3 days OSS

• Second offense: Up to 5 days OSS

• Third offense: Up to 10 days OSS, possible long-term suspension with aggravating factors.

II-17 Sexual Harassment – No student shall engage in conduct prohibited by Policy 1736/4026/7236 (Sexual Harassment Defined) (Please refer to the entire policy).

Suggested Consequences:

K-5

• First offense: Warning to 1-day OSS

• Second offense: 1 day ISS to 5 days OSS

• Third offense: 5 days ISS to 10 days OSS

Grades 6 – 12

• First offense: Up to 5 days OSS

• Second offense: Up to 10 days OSS

• Third offense: Up to 10 days OSS, possible long-term suspension with aggravating factors.

II-18 Threat/False Threat – No student shall make any threat through written or verbal language, sign, or act which conveys a serious expression of intent to cause harm or violence.

Furthermore, no student shall make a false threat of harm or violence, even in jest, which causes or is reasonably likely to cause fear or a disruption to school activities.

Suggested Consequences:

K-5

• First offense: Warning to 3 days OSS

• Second offense: 1 day ISS to 5 days OSS

• Third offense: 3 days ISS to 10 days OSS

Grades 6 – 12

• First offense: Up to 3 days OSS

• Second offense: Up to 5 days OSS

• Third offense: Up to 10 days OSS, possible long-term suspension with aggravating factors.

II-19 Physical Aggression/Fighting – Physical aggression or fighting toward students and other people is prohibited. A student who is attacked may use reasonable force in self-defense, but only to the extent necessary to get free from the attack and notify proper school authorities. A student who exceeds reasonable force may be disciplined even though someone else provoked the fight. No student shall engage in fighting or physical aggression towards others, including but not limited to:

a. Choking, hitting, slapping, shoving, scratching, spitting, biting, blocking the passage of, or throwing objects at another person in an aggressive, confrontational or dangerous manner;

b. Taking any action, instigating, or making comments or writing messages that might reasonably be expected to result in a fight or physical aggression.

Suggested Consequences:

K-5

• First offense: 1-day OSS to 3 days OSS

• Second offense: 2 days OSS to 5 days OSS

• Third offense: 3 days OSS to 10 days OSS

Grades 6 – 12

• First offense: Up to 10 days OSS

• Second offense: Up to 10 days OSS

• Third offense: Up to 10 days OSS, possible long-term suspension with aggravating factors.

II-20 Failure to Report Firearm – Any student who has knowledge that another student possesses or intends to bring a firearm on any school campus or to any school activity shall report this information to school or law enforcement authorities immediately.

Suggested Consequences:

Students may be suspended out of school for up to ten days and/or, if aggravating factors are present, recommended for long-term suspension.

II-21 Hazing – Hazing is prohibited. No group or individual shall require a student to wear abnormal dress, play abusive or ridiculous tricks on him/her, frighten, scold, beat, harass, or subject him/her to personal indignity.

Suggested Consequences:

K-5

• First offense: 1 day ISS to 1 day OSS

• Second offense: 2 days ISS to 5 days OSS

• Third offense: 5 days ISS to 10 days OSS

Grades 6 – 12

• First offense: Up to 3 days OSS

• Second offense: Up to 10 days OSS

• Third offense: Up to 10 days OSS, possible long-term suspension with aggravating factors.

II-22 Search and Seizure – A student's failure to permit searches and seizures as provided in Policy 4342 (Student Searches) is prohibited. (Please refer to entire policy)

Suggested Consequences:

Students may be suspended out of school for up to ten days and/or, if aggravating factors are present, recommended for long-term suspension.

II-23 Aiding and Abetting – No student shall aid or abet another student in violating any rule in the Code of Student Conduct. This includes recording incidents for the purpose of posting on social media.

Suggested Consequences:

Students may be suspended out of school for up to ten days and/or, if aggravating factors are present, recommended for long-term suspension.

LEVEL III – Suggested Consequences for Level III violations:

Level III infractions typically threaten the safety of students, staff, or school visitors or threaten to substantially disrupt the educational environment, and support long-term suspension. The principal may recommend a short-term suspension or decline to impose any suspension based on the presence of mitigating factors.

III-1 Narcotics, Alcoholic Beverages, Controlled Substances, Chemicals, and Drug Paraphernalia – No student shall possess, use, distribute, sell, possess with intent to distribute or sell, or conspire or attempt to distribute or sell, or be under the influence of any narcotic drug, hallucinogenic drug, amphetamine, barbiturate, marijuana, anabolic steroid, other controlled substance, any alcoholic beverage, malt beverage, fortified wine, other intoxicating liquor, drug paraphernalia, counterfeit substance, any unauthorized prescription drug, or any other chemicals or products with the intention of bringing about a state of exhilaration, euphoria, or of otherwise altering the student’s mood or behavior. The proper use of a drug authorized by valid medical prescription from a legally authorized healthcare provider shall not be considered a violation of this rule, when the drug is taken by the person for whom the drug was prescribed in accordance with Policy 6125 (Administering Medicines to Students).

For the purpose of the Code of Student Conduct the following definitions apply:

Conspiracy: an agreement by two (2) or more persons to commit an unlawful act in violation of this policy.

Counterfeit Substance: any substance that is described or presented with the intention of deceiving another into believing that it is a substance prohibited under this policy.

Distribute: to transmit a prohibited substance to one or more other persons. For purposes of this definition, a student has not “distributed” a prohibited substance (but may be guilty of “possession” or “use”) if the student’s only involvement is to share or pass a prohibited substance with other students in the course of using it, so long as the student was not the one who brought the prohibited substances onto school property or otherwise made it available to other persons. A student may be guilty of “distributing” a prohibited substance even if the substance is given freely rather than exchanged for something of value.

Drug Paraphernalia: objects used for ingesting, inhaling, or otherwise introducing controlled substances into the body, e.g., pipes, rolling papers, “roach” clips. Relevant evidence may be considered in determining whether an object is drug paraphernalia.

Possession: having the prohibited substance on the student’s person or in another place where the student, either alone or jointly with others, has control over it. This may include, but is not limited to, possession of a prohibited substance in an automobile, locker, book bag, or desk.

Use: the consumption, injection, inhalation or absorption of a prohibited substance into a student’s body by any means.

Possess with Intent to Distribute/Sell: Intent to distribute or sell may be determined from the amount of the prohibited substance found, the manner in which it was packaged, the presence of packaging materials such as scales, baggies or other containers, or from statements or actions of the student that demonstrate an intent to distribute or sell.

Sell: the exchange of a prohibited substance for money, property, or any other benefit or item of value.

Unauthorized Prescription Drug: any drug or medication that has not been prescribed for the student.

Under the influence: the use of any prohibited substance at any time or place when the prohibited substance would influence a student’s mood, behavior, or learning to any degree.

For offenses involving only possession, conspiracy to possess, use, and/or being under the influence of a substance prohibited by this policy, the following shall apply:

First offense: A 10-day suspension that can be reduced to a 5-day suspension if the student and parent/guardian agree and successfully complete a substance abuse assessment from a substance abuse professional, a school social worker or behavior specialist and an approved 8 hour Drug and Alcohol Education Program.

Second offense: A 10-day suspension with a recommendation for long-term suspension.

Note: Habitual offenses in subsequent years will be considered an aggravating factor and result in a 10-day suspension with a recommendation for long-term suspension.

III-2 Gang and Gang-Related Activity – The Board of Education believes that gangs and gang-related activities pose a serious safety threat to students and staff members of the Chatham County Schools and can significantly disrupt the educational environment.

a. No student shall participate in any gang-related activities. For purposes of this policy:

1. A “gang” is any ongoing organization, association, or group of three or more persons, whether formal or informal, having as one of its primary activities the commission of criminal acts, and having a common name or common identifying sign, colors or symbols.

2. “Gang-related activities” are any activities engaged in by a student on behalf of an identified gang; to perpetuate the existence of an identified gang; to effect the common purpose and design of an identified gang; or to represent gang affiliation, loyalty, or solidarity.

b. Conduct prohibited by this policy includes:

1. Wearing, possessing, using, distributing, displaying, or selling any clothing, jewelry, emblems, badges, symbols, signs, visible tattoos and body markings, or other items, with the intent to convey or promote membership or affiliation in any gang;

2. Communicating either verbally or nonverbally (e.g., gestures, handshakes, slogans, drawings), with the intent to convey or promote membership or affiliation in any gang;

3. Tagging, or otherwise defacing school or personal property with symbols or slogans intended to convey or promote membership or affiliation in any gang;

4. Requiring payment of protection, money or insurance, or otherwise intimidating or threatening any person in connection with gang-related activity;

5. Inciting other students to intimidate or to act with physical violence upon any other person in connection with gang-related activity;

6. Soliciting others for gang membership;

7. Conspiring to commit/committing any violation of this policy or committing or conspiring to commit any other illegal act or other violation of school district policies that relates to gang activity.

c. When a first infraction involves only the wearing gang-related attire, a student may receive a warning and be allowed to immediately change or remove the attire as an alternative to disciplinary action.

d. The superintendent or designee shall regularly consult with law enforcement officials to identify examples of gang-related items, symbols and behaviors and shall provide each principal with this information. Parents and students shall be notified that such information is maintained in the principal’s office, that it is subject to change, and that the principal’s office may be consulted for updates. In providing this information for parents and students, the school system acknowledges that not all potential gang indicators connote actual membership in a gang.

III-3 Weapons and Dangerous Instruments/Substances – No student shall possess, handle, or transmit any weapon, facsimile of a weapon, dangerous instrument, substance or other object that can reasonably be considered or used as a weapon or dangerous instrument/substance. This does not apply to any student who finds a weapon or dangerous instrument/substance on school property or receives it from another person on school property and who immediately reports the weapon or dangerous instrument/substance to school or law enforcement authorities.

The following definitions apply to this policy:

  1. Weapon: Any firearm, BB gun, stun gun, air rifle, air pistol, ammunition, powder loads, fireworks, knife, slingshot, leaded cane, blackjack, metallic knuckles, razors, razor blades (except cartridge used solely for personal shaving), box cutter, mace, pepper spray or other personal defense sprays, any sharp-pointed or edged instrument except instructional supplies, unaltered nail files and clippers and tools used solely for preparation or food, instruction, and maintenance.

  2. Dangerous Instrument/Substance: Any object or substance that is possessed, handled, transmitted, used for the purpose of causing or attempting to cause physical injury.

  3. Facsimile of a weapon: Any copy of a weapon that could reasonably be perceived to be a real weapon.

Note: Refer to Level IV: Rule IV–2 for violations involving firearms or destructive devices.

III-4 Assault on a Student – No student shall cause or attempt to cause serious physical injury to another person. For the purposes of this policy “serious physical injury” shall refer to any significant or aggravated bodily injury, including but not limited to broken bone(s), loss or chipping of teeth, loss or impairment of vision, loss of consciousness, internal injuries, scarring or other disfigurement, significant bleeding, lacerations resulting in sutures, significant bruising, severe or prolonged pain, any injury requiring hospitalization for any period of time, and/or any injury resulting in medical treatment beyond simple first aid procedures.

III-5 Attempted Assault on a School Employee – No student shall attempt to cause physical injury to a school employee or volunteer, or behave in such a manner that could reasonably cause physical injury to any school employee or volunteer

III-6 Assault and Serious Injuries on a School Employee -- No student shall assault a school employee, volunteer, or other adult who is not a student.

Note: If a teacher is assaulted or injured by a student and as a result the student is re-assigned to alternative education services, long-term suspended, or expelled, the student shall not be returned to that teacher’s classroom unless the teacher consents.

III-7 Assault Involving Weapon/Dangerous Instrument/Substances – No student shall assault another using a weapon, dangerous instrument, or dangerous substances.

Note: Refer to Level IV for violations involving firearms or destructive devices.

III-8 Arson. No student shall burn or attempt to burn any school building or property. Possessing incendiary material (i.e., gasoline, kerosene, or other flammable liquid), for the purpose of burning or the attempted burning of school property.

III-9 Bomb Threat – No student shall make a bomb threat or hoax by making a false report that a device designed to cause damage or destruction by explosion, blasting, or burning is located on the school premises or at the site of school activities. No student shall with the intent to perpetrate a hoax, conceal, place or display on school property or the site of school activities any device or artifact so as to cause any person reasonably to believe the same to be a bomb or other destructive device

III-10 Bomb Threat: Aiding/Abetting – No student shall aid, and/or abet in making a bomb threat or hoax by making a false report that a device designed to cause damage or destruction by explosion, blasting, or burning is located on the school premises or at the site of school activities.

III-11 Acts of Terror

a. No student shall make a report that he or she knows or should know is false, that any device, substance or material designed to cause harmful or life threatening illness or injury to another person, is located on school property or at the site of a school activity.

b. No student shall, with intent to perpetrate a hoax, conceal, place, disseminate or display on school property or at the site of a school activity any device, machine, instrument, artifact, letter, package, material, or substance, so as to cause a reasonable person to believe the same to be a substance or material capable of causing harmful or life-threatening illness or injury to another person.

c. No student shall threaten to commit an act of terror on school property or at the site of a school activity that is designed to cause, or is likely to cause, serious injury or death to another person, when the threat is intended to cause, or actually causes, a significant disruption to the instructional day or a school-sponsored activity.

d. No student shall make a report that he or she knows is false, that an act of terror designed to cause, or likely to cause, serious injury or death to another person on school property or at the site of a school-sponsored activity is imminent, when that report is intended to cause, or actually causes, a significant disruption to the instructional day or a school-sponsored activity.

e. No student shall aid, abet, and/or conspire to commit any of the acts described in section 1-4 of this policy.

LEVEL IV – Possession of a firearm or destructive device on educational property mandates a 365-day suspension under both federal and state law.

Firearm/Destructive Device K-12 – Any student in grades K-12 shall be recommended by the principal for a suspension of 365 calendar days for bringing a firearm or explosive device onto school property or to a school-sponsored event off school property, or for possessing a firearm or explosive or explosive device on school property or at a school-sponsored event off school property. School property includes any property owned, used or leased by the Board of Education, including school buses, other vehicles and school bus stops. Principals are required to refer to the law enforcement system any student who brings a firearm or weapon to school.

a. Firearm: A weapon, including a starter gun, which will or is designed to or may readily be converted to expel a projectile by the action of an explosive; the frame or receiver of any such weapon; or any firearm muffler or firearm silencer. The term shall not include an inoperable antique firearm, a BB gun, stun gun, air rifle, or air pistol.

b. Destructive Device: An explosive, incendiary, or poison gas; bomb; grenade; rocket having a propellant charge of more than four ounces; missile having an explosive or incendiary charge of more than one quarter ounce; mine; or device similar to any of the devices listed in this definition.

Violation of this section shall result in suspension from school for 365 days unless modified by the superintendent or Board of Education on a case-by-case basis.

The 365-day suspension does not apply to any student who finds the firearm on school property or receives it from another person on school property and who delivers the weapon, immediately, to school or law enforcement authorities.

LEVEL V – Expulsion

A student fourteen (14) years of age or older may be expelled for a violation of this Code of Conduct if the student’s behavior indicates that the student’s continued presence in the school constitutes a clear threat to the safety of other students or employees, and the Board determines there is no appropriate alternative educational program. Additionally, any student who is a registered sex offender under N.C. General Statutes 14-208 may be expelled.

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