•  

    Most Requested Policies from Handbook above:

    Parent/Student Rights & Responsibilities

    • Authority of the Board of Trustees
    • Code of Conduct
    • Student Conduct on the School Bus
    • Use of Paging Devices/Cell Phones
    • Student Dress Code
    • Safe Schools Act
    • Sexual Assault
    • Harassment, Intimidation or Bullying
    • Drug and Alcohol Use by Students
    • Student Searches
    • Student Concerns, Complaints, and Grievance
    • Attendance, Excuses, and Absences
    • Use of Technology Resources in Instruction
    • Student Disciplinary Procedures & Process

     

    INTRODUCTION

    In any organized society, appropriate rules and regulations must be set forth if the society is to function properly.  Even in the best-organized societies, disputes are bound to arise.  When they do, if that society is to remain orderly, some agent or agency must be responsible for settlement of the disagreement.  In the case of the school community, these agencies are the board of trustees, superintendent, principals and their delegates, as authorized by the state legislature.

    The philosophy of Dorchester School District Two presupposes that most disciplinary problems will be handled among teachers, student, and parent or guardian in a calm, reasonable manner.  This philosophy assumes that effective discipline leads to increased maturity and desirable behavior on the part of the student.  It is the intent of this school system that every effort be taken on the part of each school to work constructively with the student in such a manner that he be allowed to attain his educational goals without interruption.  It is understood that unless the student's behavior falls within one of the mandatory recommendations for expulsion, all resources at the school level will be exhausted prior to a recommendation for expulsion.  To this end it shall be a policy, where possible, to refer students exhibiting behavioral difficulties to the school counselor.  The counselor will be available to work with school personnel, the student, and the student's family in an effort to resolve the problem and hopefully avoid the necessity of suspensions or expulsions.  When possible, any student re-admitted to school after suspension or a referral for expulsion shall be referred to the counselor so that the counselor may review the student's educational program and help re-orient the student to the school situation.

    There are problems, however, which because of their nature affect the learning opportunities, health, and safety of other children or the successful administration of the school system, necessitating rapid deterrent action on the part of the administration.

    School boards are delegated the authority to make rules and policies governing the conduct of students in school and may in turn delegate this authority to the superintendent and other proper personnel. In this document we are attempting to communicate clearly to all concerned the policies on conduct and to stipulate due process procedures, which may be used by the students and/or parent or guardian to appeal administrative decisions or express grievances.

    Parents of Dorchester School District Two students have the right to have access to and to release information from their child's record, to challenge the contents of the record, and to obtain a copy of the record.

     

    AUTHORITY OF THE BOARD OF TRUSTEES*
    The Board of Trustees of the Dorchester School District Two is required by State Statute to make and adopt rules setting forth standards of scholastic achievement and standards of conduct and behavior that must be met by all pupils as a condition to the right of such pupils to attend schools in this district. The rules shall take into account the necessity of proper conduct on the part of all pupils and the necessity for scholastic progress in order that the welfare of the greatest number of pupils shall be promoted, even though such rules may result in the ineligibility of pupils who fail to observe the required standards and may require the suspension or permanent dismissal of such pupils.
    * 59-63-10 Code of Laws of South Carolina 1976

    APPLICATION OF CODE
    The following regulations concerning standards of conduct and behavior will apply to every student of Dorchester School District Two. They will apply to every school where he/she is enrolled, while present at any other school in Dorchester School District Two, while on school buses, and while present at any school-sponsored activity, on or off the school campus. The summary of regulations included in this handbook are based on School Board Policies which can be accessed on the district website, do.ddtwo.org, or at your student’s school. Board policies are subject to change during the school year and those changes will also be posted on the district website. The School Board Policies will supersede any summary of regulations included in this handbook.

    BREACHES OF CONDUCT
    It is recognized that students in school must conduct themselves in such manner as to maintain a climate in which learning can take place. It is believed that most students want to conduct themselves in a manner that fosters this desirable climate and that they will progress toward mature behavior and self-discipline if they are in an environment that nurtures personal responsibility. Since it is necessary for the rules to be established, students are to be informed of the rules and actions leading to disciplinary action. Administrative authority will be used to enforce rules when it becomes necessary. Individual rights should always be respected.

     

    CODE OF CONDUCT

    LEVEL 1 - DISORDERLY CONDUCT
    Disorderly conduct includes any activity in which a student engages that tends to impede orderly classroom procedures or instructional activities, orderly operation of the school, or the frequency or seriousness of which disturb the classroom or school.

    Acts of disorderly conduct may include, but are not limited to, the following:

    • classroom tardiness
    • cheating on examinations or classroom assignments
    • lying
    • acting in a manner so as to interfere with the instructional process
    • abusive language between or among students
    • failure to complete assignments or carry out directions
    • use of forged notes or excuses
    • cutting class
    • school tardiness
    • truancy
    • other disorderly acts as determined by the board

    The staff will follow these basic enforcement procedures in instances of disorderly conduct.

    • When the staff member observes (or is notified about and verifies) an offense, the staff member will take immediate action to correct the misconduct. The staff member will use an appropriate sanction, and maintain a record of the misconduct and the sanction.
    • If a certain misconduct is not immediately correctable, the staff member should refer the problem to the appropriate administrator for action specified under this policy.
    • The administrator should meet with the reporting staff member, and, if necessary, the student and the parent, and should effect the appropriate disciplinary action.
    • The administrator will maintain a complete record of the procedures.
    • The staff may apply sanctions in cases of disorderly conduct which may include, but are not limited to the following:
    • verbal reprimand
    • withdrawal of privileges
    • demerits
    • detention
    • corporal punishment
    • in-school suspension
    • on-campus reasonable work detail
    • other sanctions approved by the board

     

    LEVEL 2 - DISRUPTIVE CONDUCT

    Disruptive conduct includes those activities in which students engage that are directed against persons or property and the consequences of which tend to endanger the health or safety of themselves or others in the school.  Some instances of disruptive conduct may overlap certain criminal offenses, justifying both administrative sanctions and court proceedings. 

    The administration may reclassify disorderly conduct (Level I) as disruptive conduct (Level II) if the student engages in the activity three or more times.

    Acts of disruptive conduct may include, but are not limited to the following:

    • use of an intoxicant
    • use or possession of tobacco to include e-cigarettes
    • use or possession of alternative medicine
    • fighting
    • vandalism (minor)
    • stealing
    • threats against others
    • trespassing
    • wearing clothing displaying weapons (guns, knives, explosives, etc.)
    • wearing clothing with offensive language or conduct, as determined by the principal, as being detrimental to the learning environment of the school
    • abusive language to staff
    • refusal to obey school personnel or agents (such as volunteer aides or chaperons) whose responsibilities include supervision of students
    • possession or use of unauthorized substances, as defined by law or local school board policy
    • illegally occupying or blocking school property in any way with the intent to deprive others of its use
    • unlawful assembly
    • disrupting lawful assembly
    • any other acts as determined by the board
    • inciting a riot

     

    The staff will follow these basic enforcement procedures in instances of disruptive conduct.

    • When the administrator observes (or is notified and verifies) an offense, he/she will investigate the circumstances of the misconduct and confer with staff on the extent of the consequences.
    • The administrator will notify the parent of the student's misconduct and related proceedings. The administrator will meet with the student and, if necessary, the parent, to confer with them about the student's misconduct, and effect the appropriate disciplinary action.
    • The administrator will keep a complete record of the procedures.
    • The administration may apply sanctions in cases of disruptive conduct which may include, but are not limited to the following:
    • temporary removal from class
    • alternative education program
    • in-school suspension
    • out-of-school suspension
    • transfer
    • referral to outside agency
    • expulsion
    • on-campus reasonable work detail
    • restitution of property and damages, where appropriate, should be sought by local school authorities
    • other sanctions as approved by the board

     

    LEVEL 3 - CRIMINAL CONDUCT

    Criminal conduct includes those activities in which students engage that result in violence to themselves or to another's person or property or which pose a direct and serious threat to the safety of themselves or others in the school. These activities usually require administrative actions which result in the immediate removal of the student from the school, the intervention of law enforcement authorities, and/or action by the board.

    Acts of criminal conduct may include, but are not limited to, the following:

    • assault and battery
    • extortion
    • bomb threat
    • possession, use or transfer of dangerous weapons
    • sexual offenses
    • vandalism (major)
    • theft, possession or sale of stolen property
    • arson
    • furnishing or selling unauthorized substances, as defined by board policy
    • furnishing, selling or possession of controlled substances (drugs, narcotics or poisons)
    • distribution, sale, purchase, manufacture or unlawful possession of a controlled substance while in or within a radius of one-half mile of school grounds
    • threatening to take the life of or inflict bodily harm upon a student, staff member or members of their immediate family
    • inciting a riot that does occur

     

    The staff will follow these basic enforcement procedures in instances of criminal conduct:

    • When an administrator observes (or is notified of and verifies) an offense, the administrator will confer with the staff involved, effect the appropriate disciplinary action, and, if appropriate, meet with the student.
    • If warranted, the administrator should immediately remove the student from the school environment. The administrator will notify a parent as soon as possible.
    • If appropriate, school officials should contact law enforcement authorities.
    • Staff will follow established due process procedures when applicable.
    • The administrator will keep a complete record of the procedures.
    • The administration may apply sanctions in cases of criminal conduct which may include, but are not limited to the following:
    • out-of-school suspension
    • assignment to alternative schools
    • expulsion
    • restitution of property and damages, where appropriate, should be sought by local school authorities
    • other sanctions as approved by the board

     

    Extenuating, Mitigating or Aggravating Circumstances
    The board may give the appropriate administrator the authority to consider extenuating, mitigating or aggravating circumstances that may exist in a particular case of misconduct. The administrator should consider such circumstances in determining the most appropriate sanction.

    Discipline of Students with Special Needs
    The focus regarding discipline issues in Dorchester School District Two (DD2) should always be on prevention of future occurrences of behavior problems. This proactive approach includes the use of school wide multi-tiered systems of positive behavior supports. Disciplinary actions for code of conduct violations are necessary, however, especially in the areas related to weapons, drugs, serious bodily injury, and behaviors substantially likely to result in injury to the student or others. In regard to students with disabilities, the laws provide additional safeguards to ensure due process rights are afforded to this population of students. DD2 may use in-school or out-of-school suspension as long as this does not constitute a change in placement. A student with a disability who violates a code of conduct can be removed from his/her current placement for not more than 10 consecutive school days (to the extent that those alternatives are applied to students without disabilities), and for incidents of misconduct, as long as those removals do not constitute a change of placement or total more than 30 days as reflected in state law.

     

    STUDENT CONDUCT ON THE SCHOOL BUS

    The student school day begins as students board the buses. With the safety of all students in mind, it is essential that students and parents understand and observe the following concepts and safety rules:

    1. Riding the school bus is a privilege. School buses are considered extensions of the classroom, and student behavior on buses is required to mirror behavior standards for the classroom. The Student Code of Conduct is in effect while aboard school buses. State law requires all passengers to obey bus driver instructions and bus drivers to report conduct issues to school administrators. Repeated Code of Conduct violations, violation of the safety rules below or disobeying driver instructions will result in suspension or revocation of bus privileges. Parents/guardians please share these rules and the consequences for breaking them with your student.
    2. School Bus Assignment and Bus Stop Safety Rules:
      a. South Carolina law, Section 59-67-415, states parents or guardians are responsible for the safety, conduct, and the timely arrival of their children to, from, and at the designated school bus stop. This applies to the time before the school bus arrives to pick up students for delivery to school and after the school bus departs the designated school bus stop after student drop off.
    3. Students may ride only the bus to which they are assigned (based on the location of their residence or day care).
    4. Students may not use buses or bus stops other than those assigned to them without written permission by parents/guardians to the school and with approval of the Principal and Transportation Department. Official Bus Rider Verification Form is required.
    5. Students must be at the designated school bus stop when the bus arrives. Buses may only wait momentarily for students. Being tardy delays hundreds of other students. Buses will not return to the stop for students who miss the bus.
    6. Students should stand away from the roadway and clear of traffic at bus stops. Students must not stand or play in the roadway. Horseplay at bus stops is forbidden and students must respect the property of others.
    7. Students should not run toward the bus when the bus is moving. Wait until it comes to a complete stop and then walk to the bus entry door.
    8. Students should stand no closer than 15 feet from the bus and wait until the driver opens the door before moving toward the bus. If necessary to cross a roadway to board the bus, students must wait on the sidewalk or side of the road until the bus driver directs them to cross. Watch for the driver’s hand signals. Cross in front of the stopped bus and walk, not run. Do not walk behind a school bus; the driver can’t see you.
    9. Students riding a bus home after school must move quickly to the bus after school is dismissed. When a school administrator signals the buses to depart and the bus doors close, no additional student loading is permitted. Buses will not return to schools for students who miss the bus.
    10. Students must remain seated until the bus comes to a complete stop. Never attempt to leave the seat before the bus comes to a full stop and the driver indicates it is safe to depart.
    11. Students should exit the bus in an orderly manner.
    12. Do not loiter or play around a stopped or parked bus.
    13. Do not enter restricted areas or school grounds set aside for bus parking or loading.
    14. After departing the bus, if they must cross the roadway, students must wait beyond the front crossing gate off the road until the bus driver or school bus patrol directs them to cross.

    Note to Parents and guardians: DO NOT attempt to board the bus for any reason. State law prohibits this in Section 59-67- 245, Interference with the Operation of a School Bus.

    1. Safety Rules While on the School Bus:
    2. Go to the assigned seat and remain properly seated while the bus is in motion. Students must sit facing forward and feet, book bags on lap, and legs must be out of the bus aisle.
    3. Never extend arms, legs, or head out of the bus doors or windows.
    4. Students should not talk to the driver while the bus is in motion, except in an emergency.
    5. Quiet conversation is normally allowed, however students may not shout or talk loudly. Bus drivers may forbid talking when it creates an unsafe condition such as students being unable to hear safety instructions.
    6. Federal law requires students to be quiet when the school bus stops at railroad crossings.
    7. No eating on the bus. No drinking on the bus except water when authorized by the driver.
    8. No use of mobile phones, iPods, or similar electronic devices on the school bus.
    9. Hoods are not permitted to be worn on the school bus unless the bus driver allows it in severely cold situations.
    10. Never tamper with the emergency door or any other bus equipment.
    11. Do not damage, mark on, or deface the bus. Seat coverings must not be damaged in any manner. Students should report any bus or seat damage to the bus driver as soon as possible. If a student is found to have damaged a school bus, the student will be charged the assessed repair rate set by the State Department of Education. The student responsible for the damage will be suspended from riding the bus until restitution is made in full. Suspension will remain in place until receipt of restitution regardless of school year; that is, suspension will continue into the following school year and beyond until restitution is paid in full.
    12. Only the driver or other authorized person should remove first aid equipment, which is for emergency treatment only.
    13. Do not tamper with the fire extinguisher. Only the driver should use it for an emergency.
    14. Do not throw objects from the bus windows.
    15. Students may not transport any item on a school bus that cannot be safely secured in the student’s lap. This includes band instruments, lunch boxes, science projects, sports equipment and fund raising items. Band instruments must fit on the student’s lap. See expanded explanation on the Transportation webpage.
    16. Students may not bring animals or insects on school buses. Any item forbidden at school is also forbidden on school buses.
    17. Leave all pencils, school supplies, and personal items inside your backpack or book bag.
    18. All items brought on the bus must be secured in the student’s lap for the entire trip. Sporting equipment (balls, rackets, bats, etc.) and any item with wheels (roller skates, skateboards, etc.) must be completely enclosed in a case or bag and must also be held in the student’s lap. No item may be placed in the aisle, under a seat, in another seat, or on the engine compartment cover.
    19. In accordance with South Carolina law, students misbehaving on the school bus will be referred to the school’s principal for appropriate disciplinary action.
    20. Misconduct on the school bus—procedures and consequences. Drivers will work directly with students to correct misconduct. When attempted correction does not remedy the situation the driver is required by South Carolina law to report non-compliance with his/her lawful instructions and/or misconduct on the bus to the school principal. This is known as a referral or write up. Buses are equipped with video surveillance equipment to assist principals in addressing student conduct issues. Bus riders will be denied bus privileges if their behavior is unacceptable or infringes on the rights of other bus riders. It will be the responsibility of the parent or guardian to provide transportation to school during the suspension period. For the safety of all students, school administrators will follow these guidelines for addressing referrals for misconduct on the bus:
    21. First Referral: Warning and parent notification of consequences for future incidents
    22. Second Referral: One (1) to five (5) days’ suspension from bus
    23. Third Referral: Five (5) to ten (10) days’ suspension from bus
    24. Fourth Referral: Ten (10) to thirty (30) days’ suspension from bus
    25. Fifth Referral: Loss of bus privileges for the remainder of the school year.

     

    These guidelines apply to cumulative referrals for bus misconduct. That is, consequences will progress in severity as a student accumulates referrals for rules infractions from one incident to the next. The sequence will not start over simply because a rules infraction is different than infractions in previous referrals. For extreme misconduct, immediate revocation of bus privileges may be warranted and applied.

    Please note, students and parents should not attempt to discuss school bus rule violations or disciplinary measures with the school bus driver at a bus stop. This delays school bus operations and exposes students and parents to additional hazards along the roads we share with the citizenry.

     

    Students who attempt to board the bus while their privileges have been suspended or revoked, or adults who attempt to board or interfere with the operation of the bus, may be prosecuted under applicable South Carolina law.

     

    USE OF PAGING DEVICES/CELL PHONES IN SCHOOL

    Elementary/Middle School                        

    First offense - The device will be returned to parent/legal guardian.                         

    All other offenses - There will be a fine of $25.00 or the device will be retained for the remainder of the school year.

                                   

    High School                       

    When may communication devices be used?
    Prior to 8:55 a.m.; during class exchanges; during assigned lunch period; after 3:55 p.m. unless in an after-school class or detention. (Reference: Policy JICJ).

    Where may communication devices be used?
    Common Areas:  cafeteria, courtyard, hallways, but not classrooms/ instructional areas including media center.  Students may use communication devices in offices only with the permission of the staff member present.

    Who is responsible if the device is lost or stolen?
    The student must secure his/ her device at all times and never leave it unattended. Students should guard against theft as they would in any public building or area. Theft of such devices is a major problem in schools, and often the devices cannot be recovered. Students should keep the devices on their persons at all times or locked away. School personnel and /or administrators are not responsible for the loss, theft, or damage of any cell phone or device brought on school property.

    Student use--expectations and responsibilities
    Communication devices should be powered off during class time.  Devices heard or seen in use during instructional times or in instructional areas, including in silent mode, will be confiscated and returned to a parent for a $25 fee. Any device not picked up by the end of the school year will be donated or dispensed of properly.

    1. The student who possesses a personal electronic device shall be solely responsible for its security and care. Dorchester District Two will not provide electrical charging outlets to recharge devices.
    2. Student possession of personal electronic devices on the school’s campus, including athletic fields, school buses, school sponsored activities, and while the student is under the supervision and control of school district employees shall be permitted. All students may use these devices appropriately on campus before school begins, during transition times, during lunches, and after school ends. 
    3. To assure order in campus operation, accessories such as headphones and ear buds are only allowed to be used by the student in the cafeteria before school and in the cafeteria during lunch periods, provided the student is still able to respond to auditory commands communicated by school personnel. Students must still follow all school rules while operating communication devices. Not being able to hear or see directives will never serve as an acceptable excuse for non-compliance. These accessories are expected to be secured and out of sight during class transitions in the hallway and within the classroom unless the teacher has granted permission for instructional use.
    4. Making phone calls during transition times is prohibited.
    5. Student use of personal electronic devices shall be prohibited in areas including, but not limited to, locker rooms, bathrooms, or dressing/changing areas.
    6. Students shall not use personal electronic devices to capture video, audio, or photos of other people at school unless used under the guidance of a teacher and related to curriculum objectives. The posting of those photographs and/or video will result in disciplinary consequences.
    7. Students shall not use personal electronic devices during classroom instructional time to access and/or view Internet websites that are otherwise blocked to students at school. District wireless networked system blocked sites include, but are not limited to, social networking sites and You Tube. Electronic devices should be powered off and put away before walking into the classroom/instructional area. 
    8. Students’ use of personal electronic devices that disrupt the instructional day will result in disciplinary action and/or confiscation of the personal electronic device.
    9. When a personal electronic device is confiscated, it will only be released and/or returned to a student’s parent/legal guardian.
    10. If students use communication devices to illegally enhance their own academic performance or another student’s performance (cheat), the student(s) involved will receive additional severe consequences for academic dishonesty and may be banned from having such a device for the remainder of their attendance in Dorchester County Two schools.
    11. If students use the communication devices to engage in illegal or unethical behavior such as bullying, harassing, threatening, or intimidating, the students involved will receive additional severe consequences for such conduct and may be banned from having such a device for the remainder of their attendance in Dorchester County Two schools.

     

    Unauthorized use
    Unauthorized use of personal electronic devices resulting in the confiscation of the personal electronic device and/or disciplinary actions with the school and possible law enforcement includes, but is not limited to, the following:

    • Possessing, viewing, sending or sharing photos, video, or audio information having sexual, violent, derogatory, or threatening content on school grounds, at school events, or on school buses.
    • Transmitting school materials for unethical purposes such as cheating.
    • Using devices to bully, harass, or tease another person.

     

    Consequences for violations
    If communication devices are used in a manner violating the Student Code of Conduct and Student Use Expectations and Responsibilities 1-11, consequences will include:

    Offense #1         
    What Happens to the Device? Parent picks up after the device was confiscated and pays a $25 fee
    Discipline Consequence(s): 1 day In-School Suspension (at the discretion of the administrator)

    Offense #2
    What Happens to the Device? Parent picks up at readmit conference with Administrator
    Discipline Consequence(s): 1 day In-School Suspension and/or 1 day Out-of-School Suspension (at the discretion of the administrator)

    Offense #3
    What happens to the Device? Parent picks up at readmit conference with Administrator
    Discipline Consequence(s): School Probation and/or 3 days Out-of-School Suspension and/or Loss of Extra-Curricular Activities (30 days) (at the discretion of the administrator)

     

    Each student is under the direct control of all staff members and their substitutes. Failure to turn over a communication device immediately to a staff member when requested will result in severe disciplinary action. The offense is no longer the device only, but is now also refusal to obey the directive of the school official. Consequences may include:

    Offense #1         
    Discipline Consequence: In-School Suspension the remainder of the school day and 1 day Out-of-School suspension (at the discretion of the administrator)

    Offense #2
    Discipline Consequence: 3 days Out-of-School Suspension and School Probation (at the discretion of the administrator)

     

    STUDENT DRESS CODE

    In order to provide an atmosphere that is conducive to learning, instills discipline, and avoids safety hazards, Dorchester School District Two establishes the following guidelines for students:

    • Shorts: Shorts are appropriate for school in the elementary grades K-5. Walking shorts are appropriate for school for students in grades 6-12. Generally, the standard for wearing shorts is that when standing with arms hanging to the side, the area on the leg where fingers touch should be the hemline of the shorts. Short-shorts would not be considered acceptable school attire.
    • Sunglasses: May not be worn in the building, with the exception of RX sunglasses.
    • Hats, head stockings, sweatbands, bandannas: May not be worn in the building. If there is a medical reason for a student to wear one of the above listed, a letter from a physician will need to be provided to the principal.
    • Tops, skirts, leggings: Tank, halter, tube, bathing suits, spaghetti strap, midriffs, or see through tops may not be worn. Fish net shirts or cut off shirts may not be worn. Tennis skirts and mini-skirts are not allowed. The standards for the length of shorts also apply to the length of skirts and dresses. Also, leggings may not be worn without a skirt or top that meets the length requirement.
    • Shirts and blouses: Must be appropriately buttoned. Sweaters, vests, jacket shirts and sweater shirts are the exception.
    • Pants: “Sagging” is not acceptable. Pants must be worn at the natural waistline and may not be made of any see through materials. Undergarments must be completely covered.
    • Belts: If belts are worn, they must be worn at an appropriate level, buckled and tucked in loops.
    • Suspenders: Must be hooked and on shoulders in the proper location.
    • Footwear: Shoes must be worn at all times. Bedroom slippers are not allowed. Shoes with laces must be tied.
    • Gloves: May not be worn in building.
    • Students may not wear any apparel, attire, colors or insignia that is obscene, vulgar, libelous, slanderous, incites, expresses or advocates racial, ethnic, sexual or religious prejudices, which brings attention to a student’s involvement or membership in gang-related groups or promotes beer, liquor, wine, cigarettes, or drugs of any kind.

    Consequences

    1st Offense: The student will be sent to the office to conference with an administrator. The parent/guardian will be contacted and requested to bring a change of clothing. The student will make the appropriate change before being allowed to receive further classroom instruction.

    2nd Offense: The student will be placed in After School Work Detail/BIR/ISS. The student will wear a loaner shirt/ pants or other change during the day.

    Subsequent offenses may result in Out of School Suspension.

     

    SAFE SCHOOLS ACT
    It is a criminal offense to distribute a controlled substance while in/on or within a radius of one-half mile of the grounds of a public or private school. The penalty is a fine of $10,000 or imprisonment for up to ten (10) years or both. The penalty is greater if the substance involved is crack cocaine. The act also increases the penalty for carrying a weapon on school property to a fine of $1,000 and a prison term of one year. The act provides that it is unlawful for anyone to knowingly and willfully deliver or convey to a public official, teacher or principal by letter, document, etc. which contains a threat of death or bodily harm to that person or to a member of the person’s immediate family. 

    SEXUAL ASSAULT
    Any sexual act directed against another person, forcibly and/or against that person’s will; or not forcibly or against the person’s will where the victim is incapable of giving consent. This is prohibited and will be referred to law enforcement.

    HARASSMENT, INTIMIDATION OR BULLYING
    The board prohibits acts of harassment, intimidation, hazing, or bullying of a student by students, staff and third parties that repeatedly interfere with or disrupt a student’s ability to learn and the school’s responsibility to educate its students in a safe and orderly environment whether in a classroom, on school premises, on a school bus or other school-related vehicle, at an official school bus stop, at a school-sponsored activity or event whether or not it is held on school premises, or at another program or function where the school is responsible for the student.  

    Harassment, intimidation, hazing, or bullying is defined as a gesture, electronic communication, or a written, verbal, physical or sexual act reasonably perceived to have the effect of either of the following:

    • harming a student physically or emotionally or damaging a student’s property, or placing a student in reasonable fear of personal harm or property damage
    • insulting or demeaning a student or group of students causing substantial disruption in, or substantial interference with, the orderly operation of the school

    Any student who feels he/she has been subjected to re-occurring harassment, intimidation, hazing, or bullying is encouraged to file a complaint in accordance with procedures established by the superintendent. Complaints will be investigated promptly, thoroughly and confidentially. All school employees are required to report alleged violations of this policy to the principal or his/her designee. Reports by students or employees may be made anonymously, but formal disciplinary action must not be based solely on the basis of an anonymous report.              

    The district prohibits retaliation or reprisal in any form against a student or employee who has filed a complaint or report of harassment, intimidation, hazing, or bullying. The district also prohibits any person from falsely accusing another as a means of harassment, intimidation or bullying.                        

    The board expects students to conduct themselves in an orderly, courteous, dignified and respectful manner. Students and employees have a responsibility to know and respect the policies, rules and regulations of the school and district. Any student or employee who is found to have engaged in the prohibited actions as outlined in this policy will be subject to disciplinary action, up to and including expulsion in the case of a student or termination in the case of an employee. Individuals may also be referred to law enforcement officials. The district will take all other appropriate steps to correct or rectify the situation.

    Students, parents/legal guardians, teachers and staff members should be aware that the district may take disciplinary actions for conduct initiated and/or created off-campus involving the inappropriate use of the Internet or web-based resources if such conduct poses a threat or substantially interferes with or disrupts the work and discipline of the schools, including discipline for student harassment and bullying.                             

    EXAMPLES OF PROHIBITED CONDUCT
    The board requires its school administrators to develop and implement procedures that ensure both the appropriate consequences and remedial responses to a student or staff member who commits one or more acts of harassment, intimidation, hazing, or bullying. The following factors, at a minimum, will be given full consideration by school administrators in the development of the procedures for determining appropriate consequences and remedial measures for each act of harassment, intimidation, hazing, or bullying.                   

    Factors for determining consequences                 

    • age, developmental and maturity levels of the parties involved
    • degrees of harm
    • surrounding circumstances
    • nature and severity of the behaviors
    • incidences of past or continuing patterns of behavior
    • relationships between the parties involved
    • context in which the alleged incidents occurred

     

    Factors for determining remedial measures                      

    Personal

    • life skill deficiencies
    • social relationships
    • strengths
    • talents
    • traits
    • interests
    • hobbies
    • extracurricular activities
    • classroom participation
    • academic performance

    Environmental

    • school culture
    • school climate
    • student-staff relationships and staff behavior toward the student
    • general staff management of classrooms or other educational environments
    • staff ability to prevent and manage difficult or inflammatory situations
    • social, emotional and behavioral supports
    • social relationships
    • community activities
    • neighborhood situation
    • family situation

     

    EXAMPLES OF CONSEQUENCES AND REMEDIAL MEASURES
    Consequences and appropriate remedial actions for a student or staff member who commits one or more acts of harassment, intimidation, hazing, or bullying may range from positive behavioral interventions up to and including suspension or expulsion. Consequences for a student who commits an act of harassment, intimidation, hazing, or bullying will be varied and graded according to the nature of the behavior, the developmental age of the student and the student’s history of problem behaviors and performance, and must be consistent with the board’s approved code of student conduct. Remedial measures will be designed to correct the problem behavior, prevent another occurrence of the problem and protect the victim of the act. The consequences and remedial measures may include, but are not limited to, the examples listed below.                    

    EXAMPLES OF CONSEQUENCES

    • admonishment
    • temporary removal from the classroom
    • deprivation of privileges
    • classroom or administrative detention
    • referral to disciplinarian
    • in-school suspension during the school week or the weekend
    • out-of-school suspension
    • legal action
    • expulsion

                                   

    EXAMPLES OF REMEDIAL MEASURES                     

    Personal

    • restitution and restoration
    • mediation
    • peer support group
    • recommendations of a student behavior or ethics council
    • corrective instruction or other relevant learning or service experience
    • supportive student interventions
    • behavioral assessment or evaluation as appropriate
    • behavioral management plan, with benchmarks that are closely monitored
    • assignment of leadership responsibilities (e.g., hallway or bus monitor)
    • involvement of school disciplinarian
    • student counseling
    • parent/legal guardian conferences
    • student treatment
    • student therapy

     

    Environmental (classroom, school building or school district)

    • school and community surveys for determining the conditions contributing to harassment, intimidation, hazing, or bullying
    • school culture change
    • school climate improvement
    • adoption of research-based, systemic bullying prevention programs
    • school policy and procedures revisions
    • modifications of schedules
    • adjustments in hallway traffic
    • modifications in student routes or patterns traveling to and from school
    • targeted use of monitors (e.g., hallway, cafeteria, bus)
    • small or large group presentations for fully addressing the behaviors and the responses to the behaviors                               
    • general professional development programs for certificated and non-certificated staff
    • professional development plans for involved staff
    • disciplinary action for school staff who contributed to the problem
    • supportive institutional interventions
    • parent/legal guardian conferences
    • family counseling
    • involvement of parent-teacher organizations
    • involvement of community-based organizations
    • development of a general bullying response plan
    • recommendations of a student behavior or ethics council
    • peer support groups
    • law enforcement (e.g., school resource office, juvenile officer) involvement

     

    REPORTING
    An aggrieved student is encouraged to inform the person engaging in bullying, harassment, hazing, or intimidation that such conduct is offensive and must stop. If the aggrieved student is not comfortable with direct communication, or if direct communication is unsuccessful, the aggrieved student should initiate the complaint procedures described in this administrative rule.                           

    COMPLAINT PROCEDURES
    The purpose of informal consultation is to clarify what constitutes bullying, harassment, hazing, or intimidation, to provide guidance and information on administrative procedures and to resolve inadvertent cases of harassment. A request for informal consultation should be directed to either the student’s principal, assistant principal or the assistant superintendent. The individual who receives the request for informal consultation must inform the complainant about the options available under this policy. Anyone else receiving a complaint should encourage the complainant(s) to request an informal consultation or should notify one of the designated individuals directly.                    

    Contact with any of the designated individuals may conclude in one or more of the following options:

    • Complainant decides that no bullying, harassment, hazing, or intimidation has occurred. In this case, no further action will be taken and the consultation will remain reasonably private.
    • Complainant decides that bullying, harassment, hazing, or intimidation has occurred and chooses to file a formal complaint for investigation. Documentation that the informal consultation has taken place should be made and kept and should include a written statement from the complainant and/or notes take by the consultant. If such notes are kept, the complainant should be so advised and the notes should be reviewed by the complainant for accuracy. If the name of an accused is revealed during the informal consultation, the accused should be advised of the allegations.

     

    FORMAL COMPLAINT                   

    Filing a complaint
    After completing the informal consultation step, a complainant and/or the complainant’s parent/legal guardian who wishes to file a formal complaint for investigation and possible action should do so with the assistance of the individual who conducted the informal consultation. The consultant will complete a bullying, harassment, hazing, or intimidation complaint form and refer the matter to the assistant superintendent or his/her designee, who will conduct an investigation. Once a formal complaint has been filed, it will proceed through all steps set forth below.                                               

    Investigation
    The purpose of the investigation is to establish whether there is a reasonable basis for believing that the alleged violation of this policy has occurred. In conducting the investigation, the assistant superintendent or his/her designee will interview the complainant and the accused as well as other persons believed to have pertinent factual knowledge. While it may be necessary at times to reveal the name of the accused or the complainants, reasonable privacy will be maintained by all persons involved. Failure to maintain the privacy of the investigation could result in disciplinary action. The investigation will afford the accused a full opportunity to respond to the allegations. Within a reasonable period of time (normally 30 calendar days from the time the complaint was filed), the investigator will provide both the complainant and the accused with written notification that the investigation has been completed. The principal or assistant principal will be notified as to what further action, if any, will be taken.               

    Process of formal action
    After receiving a written report of the findings of the investigation from the assistant superintendent or his/her designee, the principal of an accused student will initiate a consultation with the assistant superintendent. Based upon the report and consultation, the principal or the immediate supervisor will decide upon one of the following three possible courses of action.                               

    • determination that the allegations are not warranted
    • informal resolution as agreed upon by the parties
    • corrective and disciplinary action as described below

    Protection of complainant, witnesses and others
    At the time the formal complaint is filed, the complainant and/or the complainant’s parent/legal guardian will be informed fully by the individual who conducted the informal consultation and/or the assistant superintendent of the steps which the investigation will follow, including the projected timetable for completion of the process.                             

    Reasonable action will be taken to assure that the complainant and those giving statements on behalf of the complainant, or supporting the complainant in other ways, will suffer no retaliation as a result of their activities in regard to the process.                   

    Steps to avoid retaliation may include, but are not limited to, the following.                         

    • transfers of one or more of the parties to another class or setting
    • arrangements that educational evaluations or decisions concerning the complainant and student witnesses be made by an appropriate individual other than the accused

    Protection of the accused
    At the time the investigation commences, the accused and the accused’s parent/legal guardian will be informed in writing by the assistant superintendent or his/her designee of the allegations, the identity of the complainant and the facts surrounding the allegations.                            

    In the event the allegations are not substantiated, reasonable steps will be taken to so advise those involved in the investigation who had knowledge of the allegations and generally to restore the reputation of the accused if damaged by the proceeding.                         

    A complainant found to have been intentionally dishonest in making the allegations or to have made them maliciously is subject to disciplinary action, including suspension and/or expulsion.                 

    Disciplinary action
    Any student who is found to have engaged in bullying, harassment, hazing, or intimidation of another student will be notified of the outcome of the investigation and will be subject to appropriate disciplinary action, which may include, but not be limited to, oral or written warnings, transfer, suspension or expulsion, subject to applicable procedural requirements, if any.                     

    Remedial action
    The complainant’s parent/legal guardian will be notified of the outcome of the investigation. If applicable, the complainant’s parent/legal guardian will also be notified of the specific remedy available to him/her and general category of disciplinary action taken against the accused. Every reasonable effort will be made to ensure that the complainant is free from any further bullying, harassment, hazing, or intimidation. The individual who conducted the informal consultation will be responsible for counseling the complainant to ensure that he/she is comfortable with the resolution and for following up with the complainant at least once within three months of the resolution to ensure that the complainant has not been subjected to any further bullying, harassment, hazing, or intimidation.  (Reference:  Policy JICFAA and AR-JICFAA)                     

                   

    TOBACCO, DRUG AND ALCOHOL USE BY STUDENTS

    No student will use/possess or distribute any controlled substance on school grounds. Any student violating this policy will be recommended to the district’s discipline hearing officer for disciplinary action.                     

    No student, regardless of age, will possess, use, sell, purchase, barter, share, distribute or be under the influence of alcoholic beverages or other controlled substances in the following circumstances.

    No student will use or have possession of any tobacco products, alternative nicotine products, or associated paraphernalia, to include but not limited to vaping devices, vape liquids, or liquid containers, other alternative tobacco products, and any other delivery method or device for prohibited substances.  Such paraphernalia will be confiscated and destroyed.                        

    • on school property (including buildings, grounds, vehicles)
    • at any school-sponsored activity, function or event whether on or off school grounds (including any place where an interscholastic athletic contest is taking place)
    • during any field trip
    • during any trip or activity sponsored by the board or under the supervision of the board or its authorized agents

    No student will aid, abet, assist or conceal the possession, consumption, purchase or distribution of any alcoholic beverage by any other student or students in any of the circumstances listed above.                       

    No student will market or distribute any substance which is represented to be or is substantially similar in color, shape, size or markings of a controlled substance in any of the circumstances listed above. Look-alike substances or substances that mimic the effect of drugs will be treated as illegal substances.  (Reference:  Policy JICH and AR-JICH and IICG)                            

     

    STUDENT SEARCHES

    School Property:

    1. General Searches
      Lockers, desks and related properties belonging to the school district may be searched as part of a general search.
    2. Individual Searches
      Any single locker, desk or school property may be searched by school officials when they have reason to believe it contains evidence that a school rule or state law has been violated.

    Student’s Person:

    1. No search of any student’s person shall take place unless school officials have reason to believe that the search will turn up evidence that a school rule or state law has been violated.
    2. The principal or designee must approve every search of a student’s person. An administrative employee or a teacher must conduct the search in private with another administrative employee or teacher serving as a witness.

    The search may consist of (1) the removal of all items in the student's pockets, purse, book bag, or other bag or container; (2) the removal of outer layers of clothing (e.g., coats, jackets. shoes, etc.); or (3) the pat down of the outer surface of the student's clothing.

    Searches by drug dogs can include a search of a student's personal items and vehicle.

     

    STUDENT CONCERNS, COMPLAINTS AND GRIEVANCE 

    The district will resolve student complaints and grievances through orderly processes and at the lowest possible level.

    Not all inappropriate behavior with race, color, national origin, sex or disability-related connotations constitutes unlawful harassment under federal law.  In order to qualify as unlawful harassment under federal law and district policy, the behavior must be sufficiently severe, persistent or pervasive that it does one of the following:

    • adversely affects a student’s education
    • creates a hostile or abusive educational environment

    A one-time incident must be severe to rise to the level of unlawful harassment.

     

    Definition of harassment
    For purposes of this policy, harassment on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex or disability is defined as a gesture, electronic communication, or a written, verbal, physical or sexual act reasonably perceived to have the effect of either of the following:            

    • harming a student physically or emotionally or damaging a student’s property, or placing a student in reasonable fear of personal harm or property damage
    • insulting or demeaning a student or group of students causing substantial disruption in, or substantial interference with, the orderly operation of the school

    The board prohibits acts of harassment of a student on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex or disability by students, staff and third parties that repeatedly interfere with or disrupt a student’s ability to learn and the school’s responsibility to educate its students in a safe and orderly environment whether in a classroom, on school premises, on a school bus or other school-related vehicle, at an official school bus stop, at a school-sponsored activity or event whether or not it is held on school premises, or at another program or function where the school is responsible for the student.

    District contact for complaints of harassment
    The district employee responsible for receiving and/or investigating reports of harassment on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex or disability is the assistant superintendent for administration and personnel.  Contact may be made as follows:

    Dorchester School District Two
    Assistant Superintendent for Administration and Personnel
    843-873-2901

    Reporting
    School personnel to include teachers, administrators and staff are required to report incidents of alleged student-on-student and staff-to-student harassment that they witness or of which they have received reports or information, whether such incidents are verbal or physical or amount to harassment in other forms.  

    An aggrieved student is encouraged to inform the person engaging in bullying, harassment or intimidation that such conduct is offensive and must stop. If the aggrieved student is not comfortable with direct communication, or if direct communication is unsuccessful, the aggrieved student should initiate the complaint procedures described in this administrative rule.                        

    Complaint procedures
    The purpose of informal consultation is to clarify what constitutes harassment based on race, color, national origin, sex or disability to provide guidance and information on administrative procedures and to resolve inadvertent cases of harassment. A request for informal consultation should be directed to either the student’s principal, assistant principal or the assistant superintendent. The individual who receives the request for informal consultation must inform the complainant about the options available under this policy. Anyone else receiving a complaint should encourage the complainant(s) to request an informal consultation or should notify one of the designated individuals directly.                               

    Contact with any of the designated individuals may conclude in one or more of the following options.

    • Complainant decides that no harassment has occurred. In this case, no further action will be taken and the consultation will remain reasonably private.
    • Complainant decides that harassment has occurred and chooses to file a formal complaint for investigation. Documentation that the informal consultation has taken place should be made and kept and should include a written statement from the complainant and/or notes take by the consultant. If such notes are kept, the complainant should be so advised and the notes should be reviewed by the complainant for accuracy. If the name of an accused is revealed during the informal consultation, the accused should be advised of the allegations.

    FORMAL COMPLAINT
    Filing a complaint
    After completing the informal consultation step, a complainant and/or the complainant’s parent/legal guardian who wishes to file a formal complaint for investigation and possible action should do so with the assistance of the individual who conducted the informal consultation. The consultant will complete a harassment complaint form and refer the matter to the assistant superintendent or his/her designee, who will conduct an investigation. Once a formal complaint has been filed, it will proceed through all steps set forth below.                            

    Investigation
    The purpose of the investigation is to establish whether there is a reasonable basis for believing that the alleged violation of this policy has occurred. In conducting the investigation, the assistant superintendent or his/her designee will interview the complainant and the accused as well as other persons believed to have pertinent factual knowledge. While it may be necessary at times to reveal the name of the accused or the complainant, reasonable privacy will be maintained by all persons involved. Failure to maintain the privacy of the investigation could result in disciplinary action. The investigation will afford the accused a full opportunity to respond to the allegations. Within a reasonable period of time (normally 30 calendar days from the time the complaint was filed), the investigator will provide both the complainant and the accused with written notification that the investigation has been completed. The principal or assistant principal will be notified as to what further action, if any, will be taken.               

    Process of formal action
    After receiving a written report of the findings of the investigation from the assistant superintendent or his/her designee, the principal of an accused student will initiate a consultation with the assistant superintendent. Based upon the report and consultation, the principal or the immediate supervisor will decide upon one of the following three possible courses of action.                               

    • determination that the allegations are not warranted
    • informal resolution as agreed upon by the parties
    • corrective and disciplinary action as described below

    Protection of complainant, witnesses and others
    At the time the formal complaint is filed, the complainant and/or the complainant’s parent/legal guardian will be informed fully by the individual who conducted the informal consultation and/or the assistant superintendent of the steps which the investigation will follow, including the projected timetable for completion of the process.                             

    Reasonable action will be taken to assure that the complainant and those giving statements on behalf of the complainant, or supporting the complainant in other ways, will suffer no retaliation as a result of their activities in regard to the process.   

    Steps to avoid retaliation may include, but are not limited to, the following.                         

    • transfer of one or more of the parties to another class or setting
    • arrangements that educational evaluations or decisions concerning the complainant and student witnesses be made by an appropriate individual other than the accused

     

    Protection of the accused
    At the time the investigation commences, the accused and the accused’s parent/legal guardian will be informed in writing by the assistant superintendent or his/her designee of the allegations, the identity of the complainant and the facts surrounding the allegations.                            

    In the event the allegations are not substantiated, reasonable steps will be taken to advise those involved in the investigation who had knowledge of the allegations and generally to restore the reputation of the accused if damaged by the proceeding.                         

    A complainant found to have been intentionally dishonest in making the allegations or to have made them maliciously is subject to disciplinary action, including suspension and/or expulsion.                 

    DISCIPLINARY ACTION
    A student who is found to have engaged in harassment of another student will be notified of the outcome of the investigation and will be subject to appropriate disciplinary action, which may include, but not be limited to, oral or written warnings, transfer, suspension or expulsion, subject to applicable procedural requirements, if any.            

    REMEDIAL ACTION
    The complainant’s parent or legal guardian will be notified of the outcome of the investigation. If applicable, the complainant’s parent or legal guardian will also be notified of the specific remedy available to him/her and general category of disciplinary action taken against the accused. Every reasonable effort will be made to ensure that the complainant is free from any further harassment. The individual who conducted the informal consultation will be responsible for counseling the complainant to ensure that he/she is comfortable with the resolution and for following up with the complainant at least once within three months of the resolution to ensure that the complainant has not been subjected to any further harassment.                         

    EDUCATION OF THE SCHOOL DISTRICT COMMUNITY
    Following the adoption of policy JII, the policy will be referenced in the student handbook, if any, and a copy of the policy and this administrative rule will be available in each school media center and each area and district office. Principals and supervisors will also conduct a review of policy JII and this administrative rule for all students and staff members to provide orientation on the nature of harassment. With regard to students, such review and orientation will take into consideration and be appropriate to the age of the students.                           

    Principals and supervisors will provide orientation for new students and employees at or near the beginning of their association with the district.                       

    Near or at the beginning of each subsequent school year, principals and supervisors will provide for their students and faculty a review of policy JII and this administrative rule.

    SCHOOL CONTACT FOR COMPLAINTS OF HARASSMENT
    An administrator at each school site will be designated as the person to receive complaints of harassment based on race, color, national origin, sex or disability.         

     

    ATTENDANCE
    Please carefully read the following information concerning South Carolina Attendance Laws and the Dorchester School District Two Guidelines for student attendance. The Dorchester School District Two Board believes that attendance is a key factor in student achievement, and any absence from school represents an educational loss to the student.  However, the board also recognizes that some absences from school are unavoidable.

     

    SOUTH CAROLINA STATE LAW (R 43-274) ATTENDANCE DEFINITIONS

    CHRONIC ABSENTEEISM

    A part of the implementation of the Every Student Succeeds Act, districts and schools are required to report to the South Carolina Department of Education the number of students who are chronically absent each year.  According to the United States Department of Education’s Office of Civil Rights (OCR), an absent student is one who misses 50 % of the instructional day for any reason and regardless of whether the absence is excused or unexcused.  In other words, students must attend class for at least half of the instructional day to be considered present for that day.

    Using this new definition, the OCR requires states to report the number of students in each district and school who are absent at least 10% of the time during which they are enrolled in a particular school or district.  More specifically, students who are enrolled in the same school for an entire academic year and miss 18 or more days (10 %) will be considered chronically absent.  The total number of chronically absent students will be included on district and school report cards and reported to the OCR.

    TRUANT
    A student ages 6 to 17 years of age meets the definition of truant when the student has three (3) consecutive unlawful/unexcused absences or a total of five (5) unlawful/unexcused absences.

    HABITUAL TRUANT
    A student ages 12 to 17 years of age meets the definition of a habitual truant when the student has reached the level of truant, fails to comply with the intervention plan developed by the school, student and parent/guardian, and accumulates two (2) or more additional unlawful/unexcused absences.

    CHRONIC TRUANT
    A student ages 12 to 17 years of age meets the definition of chronic truant when the student has reached the level of habitual truant, has been through the intervention process, has been referred to family court, placed on an order to attend school, and continues to accumulate additional unlawful/unexcused absences.

     

    ATTENDANCE PROCEDURES

    CHRONIC ABSENTEEISM PROCEDURE
    At the beginning of each month schools will compile a list of students who are considered chronically absent (any student who is absent a minimum of 10% of his/her enrollment period in the current school year for any reason (e.g. illness, suspension, excused or unexcused) is considered chronically absent).  Letters will be sent to the parent/guardian notifying them as to the status of the student and explaining the importance of regular school attendance.  An administrator may schedule an attendance conference with the parent/guardian when the student has been identified as chronically absent.  Research shows that poor attendance can impact student performance.  Students who miss too many days in kindergarten and first grade can have trouble mastering reading by the end of the third grade.  Chronic absenteeism of middle and high school students is the leading warning indicator for predicting students who dropout. 

    TRUANT PROCEDURE
    When a student is identified as truant (three (3) consecutive unlawful/unexcused absences or a total of five (5) unlawful/unexcused absences), an administrator will communicate with the student and parent/guardian to identify the reasons for the student’s absences.  An attendance contract and intervention plan may be developed and signed to address and improve the student’s attendance in school.

    HABITUAL TRUANT PROCEDURE
    When a student is identified as habitual truant (fails to comply with the attendance contract and intervention plan and has accumulated two (2) or more additional unlawful/unexcused absences), the administrator may schedule an additional conference to address the continued attendance concerns.  The school may also complete the Family Court Referral Packet for court action and send to the appropriate District Director.

    CHRONIC TRUANT PROCEDURE
    If all reasonable alternatives have been exhausted and a student is identified as chronic truant (has been through the intervention process, has been referred to family court, placed on an order to attend school, and continues to accumulate additional unlawful/unexcused absences), the school may file a contempt of court petition with Family Court.  The student will appear in court for violating the previously issued court order to attend school.

    REQUIRED EXCUSES
    Within three (3) days after returning to school, the student must submit a written excuse explaining his/her absence.  If applicable, the student may also submit an excuse from the doctor.  If a student does not submit an excuse, his/her absence will be considered unlawful/unexcused.

    The excuse should include the following information:

    Student’s Name                                Date the excuse was written                       Date(s) of the absence(s)

    Reason for the absence(s)           Signature of the parent/legal guardian and telephone number

     

    Lawful/Excused Absences

    • The absence is caused by the student’s own illness and whose attendance in school would endanger his/her health or the health of others.
    • The absence is due to an illness or death in the student’s immediate family.
    • The absence is due to a recognized religious holiday of the student’s faith.
    • The absence is due to school activities that are approved in advance by the principal.

    Unlawful/Unexcused Absences

    • The absence of the student without the knowledge of his/her parent/legal guardian.
    • The absence of the student without acceptable cause with the knowledge of his/her parent/legal guardian.

    Suspension(s)
    Suspension(s) are not to be counted as an unlawful/unexcused absence for truancy purposes.

    Requirements to be Counted Present for the School Day
    Students must attend school for 50% of the instructional day to be counted present.

    EXPLANATION/CLARIFICATION
    The South Carolina Department of Education (SCDE) states that a school year consists of 180 days of instruction.  In Dorchester School District Two a day of instruction is 7 hours long.  Students must be present for 3½ hours of instruction for the instructional day to count as one of the 180 days required by the SCDE.  This includes “Early Release” days.  An “Early Release” day only consists of 3¾ hours of instruction.  Therefore, even on the “Early Release” days a student needs to be present for 3½ hours of instruction to be counted present for the instructional day.

    Tardy to School/Early Dismissal from School
    Students who are chronically late to school or who are dismissed early from school often suffer academically from lost instructional time.  For this reason, a record will be kept of all tardies to school and early dismissals.

    TARDY TO SCHOOL/EARLY DISMISSAL PROCEDURES
    Elementary School – The parent/guardian of a student who arrives at school late must bring the student into the school office to sign the student in and list the reason for the student being late to school.

    Middle/High School – The student must report to the school office to sign in or be signed in by parent/guardian and list the reason for the student being late to school.

    Elementary/Middle School – If a student is dismissed early, the parent/guardian must come into the school office and sign the student out, listing the reason for the early dismissal.  Please note that if a student is being signed out early, it must be done 30 minutes prior to the scheduled dismissal time.

    High School – If a student is dismissed early, the parent/guardian must come into the school office and sign the student out, listing the reason for the early dismissal or the parent may send a note allowing the student to be dismissed early.  The school will verify all notes received for early dismissal.  Please note that if a student is being signed out early, it must be done 30 minutes prior to the scheduled dismissal time.

    All Schools – The administration will determine if the tardy to school and/or early dismissal will be lawful/excused or unlawful/unexcused.

     

    TARDY TO SCHOOL/EARLY DISMISSAL INTERVENTIONS
    The following procedures will be followed for dealing with unlawful/unexcused tardies to school/early dismissals:

    If a student accumulates a total of five (5) unlawful/unexcused tardies to school and/or unlawful/unexcused early dismissals in a nine-week period, a warning letter will be sent to the student’s parent/guardian.  The student will not be eligible for perfect attendance for that nine-week period.

    If a student accumulates a total of ten (10) unlawful/unexcused tardies to school and/or unlawful/unexcused early dismissals in a nine-week period, the student’s parent/guardian must attend a conference with an administrator to develop and sign an intervention plan.

    If a student accumulates fifteen (15) or more unlawful/unexcused tardies to school and/or unlawful/unexcused early dismissals in a nine-week period, the school will explore referrals to other agencies to assist in improving the attendance issue including the Department of Social Services.

     

    Middle/High School Tardy to Class
    Students are to be in their assigned classroom at the assigned time.  These consequences are administered on a semester basis by class period.

    First and Second Tardy – The teacher will issue a verbal warning.

    Third Tardy – The teacher will have two-way communication with the parent/guardian and will document the communication in log entries.

    Fourth and Fifth Tardy – The student will be assigned detention by the administration.

    Sixth through Ninth Tardy – The student will be assigned in-school suspension (ISS).

    Tenth through Thirteenth Tardy – The student will be assigned out-of-school suspension (OSS) and will be placed on school probation.

    Fourteenth Tardy – The student will be assigned OSS and referred to the School Intervention Program (ScIP).

    Fifteenth Tardy – The student will be recommended for a discipline hearing.

     

    USE OF TECHNOLOGY RESOURCES IN INSTRUCTION
    In making decisions regarding access to technology, Dorchester School District Two considered its educational mission, goals and objectives. Electronic access to information and the research and analysis skills required for its effective use are now fundamental to the preparation of citizens and future employees. Access to network computer technologies enables students to explore libraries, databases, websites and other resources while communicating with people around the world.

    The district expects that faculty will blend the use of these technologies throughout the curriculum and will provide guidance and instruction to students in its proper and responsible use.

    GENERAL ACCESS TO TECHNOLOGY
    Dorchester School District Two provides its employees and students with access to computing equipment, systems and network functions such as e-mail and the Internet. This access has a limited educational purpose for students and is to facilitate employees’ work productivity. Students and employees utilizing and/or observing school-provided Internet access are responsible for good behavior online just as they are in a classroom or other area of the school. The same rules for behavior and communications apply.     

    Prior to technology use, all students will receive basic orientation and training on the responsible use of technology. Orientation may include, but is not limited to, Internet safety, responsible social media use and cyberbullying. District personnel or designated representatives will provide age-appropriate training for students using computing and network services. The training provided will be designed to promote Dorchester Two’s commitment to the following.     

    • the standards and acceptable use of Internet services as set forth in this acceptable use policy
    • student safety with regard to the following
      • safety on the Internet
      • appropriate behavior while on online, on social networking Web sites and in chat rooms
      • cyberbullying awareness and response
    • full compliance with the requirements of the Children’s Internet Protection Act (CIPA)

    Following receipt of this training, students will acknowledge that they received the training, understood it and will follow the provisions of the district’s acceptable use policies.     

    All students and staff must sign a form on page 89 of this handbook acknowledging that they have read and understand the acceptable use of technology policy and administrative rules; that they will comply with the policy and administrative rules; and that they understand the consequences of violating the policy or administrative rules.         

    FILTERING AND SECURITY
    The district deploys targeted technologies within its computer networks designed to filter and secure them from outside intrusion and inappropriate materials. These measures include active web-filtering technologies as required by the Child Internet Protection Act, email spam filtering and other network monitoring devices as needed.     

    Filtering software is not 100 percent effective. While filters make it more difficult for objectionable material to be received or accessed, filters are not a solution in themselves. Users are prohibited from tampering or otherwise attempting to circumvent filtering technologies through any means and should report any observed attempt to do so through third-party “proxy” servers, shared network credentials or other forms of “hacking”.          

    PERSONAL PRIVACY
    Communications conducted over district networks, including voicemail messages, email, attached documents and images are not private. All records generated within the district (except those specifically excluded by law), whether in electronic or hardcopy form, are subject to the Freedom of Information Act and open to public inspection.     

    Dorchester School District Two reserves the right for system administrators to examine, restrict or remove any material that is on or passes through its technology systems.     

    Users may not reveal home addresses, personal e-mail addresses or personal phone numbers of colleagues or students as it is a violation of district policy.     

    OUTSIDE USE OF DISTRICT TECHNOLOGY
    Many network resources provided by the district are connected to the broader Internet and accessible from outside its school and office locations. Employees and students using these services should use the same discretion and adherence to district policy while accessing those platforms as they would from work or school. District-owned devices and peripherals used from home to access Internet resources on private Internet wireless or cellular networks are also subject to this policy and should not be used for proscribed activities or to view inappropriate material.     

    PERSONAL WEBSITES AND INTERNET USE
    The district may use any means available to request the removal of personal websites that substantially disrupt the school environment or that utilize the school system or individual school names, logos or trademarks without permission.     

    Although school personnel generally do not monitor students' Internet activity conducted on non-school system computers during non-school hours, when a student's on-line behavior has a direct and immediate effect on school safety or maintaining order and discipline in the schools, the student may be disciplined in accordance with board policy.         

    STUDENT USE OF PERSONAL TECHNOLOGY SERVICES
    Dorchester School District Two does not generally support student use of personally owned technology devices on its network. Students may bring personal technology devices, including iPods, tablets/iPads, netbooks, laptops, music player devices, gaming systems and smart phones into a school with the permission of the building principal and must utilize personal technology devices in compliance with all district and school rules established as guidelines for their use.     

    CYBERBULLYING
    The use of networked technology for harassing, dissing, flaming, denigrating, impersonating, outing, tricking, excluding and cyberstalking are all examples of cyberbullying. Sending emails or posting comments with the intent of scaring, hurting or intimidating someone else constitutes bullying.      

    In some cases, cyberbullying can be a crime. These forms of activity should be reported immediately to the appropriate school authority.         

    EXAMPLES OF ACCEPTABLE USE INCLUDING BUT NOT LIMITED TO
    I will do the following:

    • Use school technologies for school-related activities and research.
    • Follow the same guidelines for respectful, responsible behavior online that I am expected to follow offline.
    • Treat school resources carefully, and alert staff if there is any problem with their operation.
    • Encourage positive, constructive discussion if allowed to use communicative or collaborative technologies.
    • Alert a teacher, staff member, or administrator if I see threatening/bullying, inappropriate or harmful content (images, messages, posts) online.
    • Use school technologies at appropriate times, in approved places for educational pursuits only.
    • Cite sources when using online sites and resources for research to ensure there is no copyright infringement.   
    • Recognize that use of school technologies is a privilege and treat it as such.
    • Be cautious to protect the safety of myself and others.
    • Help to protect the security of school resources.

    EXAMPLES OF UNACCEPTABLE USE INCLUDING BUT NOT LIMITED TO
    I will not do the following:   

    • Use school technologies in a way that could be personally or physically harmful to me or others.
    • Search for or view inappropriate images or content.
    • Engage in cyberbullying, harassment or disrespectful conduct toward others–staff or students.
    • Try to find ways to circumvent the school’s safety measures and filtering tools.
    • Use school technologies to send spam or chain mail.
    • Plagiarize content I find online.
    • Post personally-identifying information about myself or others.
    • Impersonate another person or utilize technology resources to create false identities.
    • Agree to meet someone I meet online in real life without a trusted adult present.
    • Use language online that would be unacceptable in the classroom.
    • Use school technologies for illegal activities or to pursue information on such activities.
    • Attempt to hack or access sites, servers, accounts or content that isn’t intended for my use.
    • Access another individual's materials, information or files without their direct permission.
    • Vandalize, damage, or disable the property of another individual or organization.
    • Violate any local, state, or federal statute.

    COPYRIGHT
    No employee or student of Dorchester District Two should engage in unauthorized copying, the use of copyright-protected material or violate the intellectual property rights of others. Teachers and employees unsure of copyright or “fair use” status of any material should seek further assistance from a qualified media specialist, administrator or instructional technology specialist before copying and/or distributing such content.         

    DISCIPLINARY ACTION
    Any violation of district policy and rules may result in loss of district-provided access to the Internet. Additional disciplinary action may be determined at the building level in keeping with existing procedures and practices regarding inappropriate language or behavior. When and where applicable, law enforcement agencies may be involved.     

    INDEMNITY
    Dorchester School District Two makes no warranties of any kind, neither expressed nor implied, for the Internet access it is providing. The district will not be responsible for any damages users suffer, including, but not limited to, loss of data resulting from delays or interruptions in service. The district will not be responsible for the accuracy, nature, or quality of information stored on district storage media, hard drives or servers; nor for the accuracy, nature or quality of information gathered through district-provided Internet access. The district will not be responsible for personal property used to access district computers or networks or for district-provided Internet access. The district will not be responsible for unauthorized financial obligations resulting from district-provided access to the Internet.    

    (Reference: AR GBEBD-R Use of Technology Resources in Instruction. For the full administrative rule, visit do.ddtwo.org.)

     

    STUDENT DISCIPLINARY PROCEDURES

    State Law

    STATE STATUTE 59-24-60 LAW ENFORCEMENT NOTIFICATION:
    In addition to other provisions required by law or by regulation of the State Board of Education, school administrators must contact law enforcement authorities immediately upon notice that a person engaging or has engaged in activities on school property or at a school sanctioned or sponsored activity which may result or results in injury or serious threat of injury to the person or to another person or his property as defined in local board policy.

    Please note that school personnel no longer have discretion regarding calling the police. This statute means just what it says, “must contact law enforcement authorities immediately.”

    METHODS OF DISCIPLINE:
    The Board of Trustees of Dorchester County School District Two affirms that every effort should be taken on the part of each school to work constructively with the student in such a manner that he be allowed to preserve uninterrupted his educational goals.  Disciplinary measures should be used constructively when possible, punitively when necessary.  The following modes of disciplinary action may be used by each principal according to approved procedures:  (1) Detention, (2) Work Detail, (3) Tuesday/Thursday School (excluding religious conflicts), (4) Withholding of Privileges, (5) Disciplinary Probation, (6) Suspension, (7) Alternative School Placement, and (8) Expulsion.  If parent or pupil refuses punishment under (1) detention or (2) work, the student will be suspended.                                                                                                                                                                                                                      

    DETENTION
    The term “detention” applies to keeping a student in detention during recess or after regular school day dismissal for a period of time not to exceed one (1) hour.  Authority rests with the Principal or the Principal’s delegates.

    Procedures: School authority should give parent or guardian notice at least the day before a student will be detained over fifteen (15) minutes or will miss his regular transportation.  When a pupil is detained at school beyond normal dismissal time, appropriate consideration to factors of pupil transportation, traffic patterns, weather, and any other extenuating circumstances shall be given.

    WORK
    The term "work" as used in this code means work required of a student as a mode of discipline.  No work will be assigned that will be harmful to a child.  Authority rests with the principal or the principal's delegates.

    Procedures:  Types of work to be performed include yard work and janitorial work.  It should be clear as to whether the work will be accomplished during the recess period or after regular school hours, e.g., after school, Saturday School.  The length of time involved should be considered.  Work time must not exceed the time scheduled for recess plus one to three (1-3) hours after regular school hours.  Work, as a form of discipline, cannot be performed during an academic period.

    WITHHOLDING OF PRIVILEGES
    The term "withholding of privileges" as used in this code means the forfeiture of the student's right to participate in certain clubs, athletics, or other activities sponsored by the school.  Authority rests with the principal or the principal's delegates.

    Procedures:

    • Investigation and documentation of charges
    • Formal notification to student, parent or guardian
    • Written notice will be given to include the following: statement of breach of conduct, notice of what privilege will be withheld, length of time privilege will be withheld.
    • If the student, parent or guardian is aggrieved by the principal's decision, he/she may request a hearing with the assistant superintendent. If case is referred to the assistant superintendent for further action, after holding a hearing with the parent or guardian or student and principal, she may affirm principal's decision or may reverse principal's decision.

     

    Results of Decision: If the assistant superintendent exonerates the student, he/she will be restored to all privileges.

    BEHAVIORAL INTERVENTION ROOM (BIR)
    Elementary and/or middle school students whose behavior is unacceptable may be removed from the regular instructional classroom and placed in a supervised setting for a school day or longer.  Authority rests with the principal.

    Procedures:

    • Investigation and documentation of unacceptable behavior
    • Conference with student
    • Notification to parent or guardian
    • Immediate oral notification to parent or guardian if at all possible
    • Written notice will be given to include the following: statement of breach of conduct, length of BIR and inclusive dates, time for parent conference

     

    IN SCHOOL SUSPENSION (ISS)
    High school students whose behavior is unacceptable may be removed from the regular instructional classroom and placed in a supervised setting for a school day or longer in lieu of out of school suspension.  Authority rests with the principal.

    Procedures:

    • Investigation and documentation of unacceptable behavior
    • Conference with student regarding the alleged incident
    • Notification to parent or guardian
    • Immediate oral notification to parent or guardian if at all possible
    • Written notice will be given to include the following: statement of breach of conduct, length of BIR and inclusive dates, time for parent conference

     

    DISCIPLINARY PROBATION
    A student who has been found to be in violation of the Student Code of Conduct may be placed on probation by the school principal or District Hearing Officer. 

    School personnel must, however, follow the procedures outlined for short-term suspension, i.e., investigation, formal notice to student and parent, and opportunity for a parent conference.  Disciplinary probation should be for a definite time period during which critical examination and evaluation of the student's progress should take place.

    An administrator may place the student on probation. During the probation period, the student may be denied the privileges of participation in or attendance at all extracurricular activities.  At the close of the probationary period, the individual case shall be reviewed, and the student may regain all privileges.

    If the student is further involved in an infraction of school rules during the probationary period, he/she shall be suspended or expelled. No student shall be administratively placed on probation more than once at any level in any school year.

    SUSPENSION
    The purpose of the suspension is to remove the student from the educational environment. The school will notify the parent that the child's behavior is unacceptable.  The term "suspension" is used in this code to mean the temporary exclusion of a student from school grounds and participation in school-sponsored activities not to exceed ten days for a single offense or 30 days in any one school year. Days lost from school as a result of suspension are considered lawful and excused absences.  Students are entitled to make up work missed during suspension.  A student is under suspension from the time he/she is notified by the principal.  A suspension may be terminated as soon as the parental conference is held.  The authority rests with the principal.

    Procedures:

    • Investigation and documentation of charges
    • Conference with the student regarding the alleged incident
    • Formal notification to student and parent or guardian
    • Immediate oral notification to parent or guardian if at all possible
    • Written notice will be given to include the following: statement of breach of conduct, length of suspension and inclusive dates, time for parent conference (within three to five days of suspension).

     

    Results of Decision: Appeals will be allowed to the Superintendent of Schools from a suspension. A student shall not be suspended during the last ten days of school if the suspension will make the student ineligible to receive credit for the school year unless the presence of the student constitutes an actual threat to a class or a school and a hearing is granted within 24 hours of suspension.

    In lieu of out of school suspensions for students, the principal may offer to the parent/guardian of the student the following options:

    1. Shared Responsibility: The parent or guardian shall attend school with the student for a number of days to be determined by the principal but not to be less than one full day. In the event the parent or guardian chooses this option, the parent or guardian: a) will be required to attend all classes and periods with the student, including lunch; b) shall sit next to the student for the entire school day, and; c) shall agree that any further significant disciplinary problems shall result in recommendation for expulsion and/or placement in the alternative school.

    The principal shall determine, upon request, if there are any extenuating circumstances that absolutely prevent at least one parent or guardian from attending class or any circumstance that would necessitate an alternative punitive action.  Economic hardship or loss of pay shall not be considered extenuating circumstances.  In the event such extenuating circumstances (i.e., both parents in hospital) do exist, then out of school suspension will apply.  Obviously, any parent or guardian who disrupts the classroom in any way shall be immediately removed from school and the student recommended for expulsion or alternative school.

    1. ScIP: If the student commits a suspension offense once enrolled in ScIP, the student may be recommended for expulsion. The administrator will call the district office contact person to arrange an appointment for the student's hearing with the District Hearing Officer. The school's secretary should compile a file with the following information: attendance record, discipline history, teacher comment sheets, grades, current transcript, and a letter stating that there is not a handicapping condition.  The District Hearing Officer conducts hearings as needed during the school week.  Once the appointment is made, the school will contact the parent by phone and by letter immediately.  The expulsion file will be sent immediately to the district contact person.
    2. Referral to Alternative Education Program: A student in grades 6-12 who has been recommended for expulsion may be assigned to the alternative school as determined by the Hearing Officer. To be assigned to the Alternative Education Program, the principal must recommend a student for expulsion for one of the following offenses:
    • Disrespect/Insubordination: defiance of authority and encouraging others to break or disobey rules
    • Consistent/Persistent Misconduct: violations which are consistently repeated, such as class disruptions and fighting
    • Disruptive/Disorderly Behavior: gambling, destructive handling of school equipment such as fire extinguishers and alarms, and unauthorized walkout from classroom or school grounds.

     

    Students who commit the following violations of the discipline code may/may not be recommended to the Alternative Education Program:  (1) assaulting/threatening teachers or school employees; (2) weapons violations.  Based on the circumstances and the evidence presented at the expulsion hearing, the District Hearing Officer will determine if placement at the Alternative School Program is an appropriate option. The District Hearing Officer may add other violations as appropriate.

     

    EXPULSION
    The term "expulsion" is used in this code to mean the forfeiture of a student's right to attend school in Dorchester School District Two.  A student excluded from any district school shall be ineligible to attend any other school in the district.  Any student expelled from any district in the state is not eligible to attend any school in the district. Expelled pupil shall have the right to petition for re-admission for the succeeding school year.

    Once the expulsion process is initiated and prior to the hearing before the District Hearing Officer, a student cannot withdraw from school and enter another public school in Dorchester School District Two to avoid expulsion.  Authority to expel a student rests with Dorchester School District Two’s Board of Trustees.

    Procedures: 

    • The principal shall investigate and document all charges.
    • If the principal suspends a student with the intent to recommend expulsion, written notice will be given of the offense or offenses of which the student is accused, giving the time, place, and nature of each offense with sufficient specific facts to permit the student to understand the charges.

    The principal will recommend expulsion and notify the District Hearing Officer.  The principal will advise the parent or guardian of the time and place of the hearing.

    DISCIPLINARY PROCESS

    1. School Level Process
    2. Classroom Teachers:
    3. Each teacher must have a classroom management plan approved by his or her assigned administrator. The teacher's management plan must include rules, consequences, and procedures for classroom routines.
    4. The rules/consequences/procedures must be posted in each classroom.
    5. Each teacher will provide parents and students a copy of the classroom management
    6. Each teacher will supply his or her assigned administrator a copy of the classroom management plan.
    7. Each classroom management plan must include parental contact as a step. Each teacher will keep a log of these contacts.
    8. Guidance intervention should be used prior to an administrative referral.

     

    1. School Level Administrators:
      The consistent application of the process across the district should include the following:
    2. School administrators will handle progressive or severe behaviors.
    3. Administrators will see students only if the classroom management process has been followed. It is necessary that teachers have made prior contact with the parents.
    4. Administrators will confirm that the disciplinary process has been communicated to all parents and students.
    5. Administrators must develop a school level appeal process to include a school level hearing board. For example, if a student or parent disagrees with an assistant principal there should be a clearly defined process for appealing to the head principal.  The process should include a written appeal before the principal sees any parent.
    6. An intervention referral will be made to guidance when a student is placed in BIR/ISS or out of school suspension.
    7. At all levels, three suspendable offenses (whether ISS or OSS) may result in a student being suspended and placed on school level probation. The student may not return to school without a parent. At the parent conference, the principal or designee will place the student on a school probationary contract. This contract will be signed by student and parent and will state that the student will be referred for expulsion if infractions to the code of conduct continue. A district wide probationary contract will be utilized by all schools in order to ensure consistency.
    8. In all cases, drug and alcohol related offenses must be referred directly to the District's Hearing Board for expulsion.
    9. Students at every grade level possessing a weapon or item that may be used as a weapon will be referred to the District's Hearing Board for expulsion.
    10. Each school in the district must adhere to a district wide tardy policy. The Truancy Diversion Program (TDP) will be a part of this policy and administrators will have the right to make direct referrals. 

     

    1. District Level Hearing Officer (Designee of School Board)
    2. Administrative expulsion hearing procedures:
    3. The parent or guardian of the student shall be notified of the time and place of the hearing, of the student's right to be represented by lay or legal counsel and his/her right to cross-examine witness statements and present evidence. If an attorney is to be present, the district requests 48-hour notification in order that it too may have legal representation.
    4. At such hearing the student may be represented by lay or legal counsel but no counsel will be provided for him.
    5. The hearing will be conducted in an informal manner.
    6. The burden of presenting evidence justifying the expulsion will rest with the school's principal or his representative. Evidence and/or witness statements may be provided at the hearing.
    7. The student may be heard and may present any evidence relative to the charges under consideration.
    8. Such hearing will not be open to the public.
    9. The decision of the District Hearing Officer or the District’s Board of Trustees will be communicated in writing to the student's parent or guardian by U.S. postal mail and in the case of adverse decision shall specify that parent or guardian may contact the Appeal Officer for available options.

     

    1. The parent and student are requested to attend the District Level Hearing (however, they may waive their right to attend). The outcomes of the hearing may result in:
    2. District probationary contract
    3. An invitation to attend the Alternative Education Program in lieu of expulsion.
    4. Expulsion
    5. In the event the parent fails to attend the scheduled hearing, the board will take action based on the evidence presented.

    III.           Appeal to the District Board of Trustees

    The student and parent may appeal the decision of the District Hearing Officer to the Dorchester School District Two Appeal Officer, in writing, within five days after receiving the findings of the District’s Hearing Officer. The appeal must state the specific due process violation.  If there is cause for an appeal to the Board of Trustees after meeting with the appeal officer, this appeal must be made in writing stating the specific due process violation.

    1. Decisions by the District's Hearing Officer may be appealed in writing to the District's Board of Trustees, if there has been a violation of due process.

    Results of Decision: If the student is reinstated by the Board of Trustees, he will be restored all privileges and allowed to make up all work while absent as a result of the procedures.

    Appeal to Court of Common Pleas:
    Any student, parent, or guardian aggrieved by the order of the Board of Trustees has the statutory right to appeal to the Court of Common Pleas within ten days.

     

    DEFINITIONS

    Expulsion:
    Expulsion or suspension shall prohibit a student from entering the school or school grounds except for a prearranged conference with an administrator. Attending any day or night school functions or riding a school bus is also prohibited.  The provisions of this section shall not preclude enrollment in any adult night or community school program.

    Consistent Offender:
    Whenever two or more faculty members and the principal of the school agree in writing that a student's conduct is so consistently disruptive over a fair period of time that teacher's opportunity to teach and other students' right to learn have been impaired, the parent or guardian of the student shall be so notified in writing.  The parent and the student shall be afforded the immediate opportunity of a parent conference.  Unless the student's behavior promptly and substantially improves, he/she may be recommended for expulsion.

    Re-admission Prerequisites:
    When any former student who has been expelled from any school in Dorchester School District Two petitions for re-admission to any school in District Two, the petition shall be endorsed favorably/unfavorably by his/her last principal (where still employed by the Dorchester School District Two). Securing the petition is the responsibility of the student.  Unless so endorsed, the petition shall not be considered without two-thirds consent of the Board of Trustees last having jurisdiction over the expelling offense.  The Board may refuse to admit or may permanently expel any incorrigible pupil.  Any pupil expelled for a second time for a serious offense may be considered incorrigible.

    Extraordinary Proceedings:
    When a majority of the Dorchester School District Two Board agree that the action of the District Hearing Officer in re-admitting a student to school or maintaining a student in school constitutes a reasonable chance of danger to persons or property, or that the student's admittance so clearly undermines the goals of quality education that the integrity of the system is jeopardized, the Board of Trustees may then on its own motion require the matter to be brought before it for hearing without regard to any decision formerly reached by the District Hearing Officer.

    Disciplinary Actions Revealed:
    In all disciplinary hearings held by a District Hearing Officer or the Board of Trustees, the findings and decision thereabouts shall be reduced to writing and copies delivered to all administrators and faculty members directly involved within five (5) days following the written decision.

     

     

    POLICIES & PROCEDURES
    The Board Policy Manual is reviewed periodically and updated to reflect the adoption of new federal and state laws and practices to support the successful operations of our schools. The Board Policy Manual is available for full review at do.ddtwo.org. Additionally, there are copies in every school media center and at the District Office for review. Notifications relative to updates to existing policies and/or the creation of new policies which occur after the publishing of this handbook will be posted on the district website.