Board Policies & Administrative Procedures

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AP 3 – 09: Student Conduct

Related Policies:
Related Procedures:
Exhibits:
Initial Approval:
Last Amended:
Last Reviewed: 2019 November 26


PURPOSE

The Student Code of Conduct supports the establishment of a welcoming, caring, respectful and safe learning environment for all students and school staff. Students are expected to learn, practice and develop such personal and interpersonal character traits and to contribute to the development of these environments. Students are further expected to respect diversity and refrain from demonstrating any form of discrimination as set out in the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, the Alberta Human Rights Act, and the Education Act. As a fundamental principle and as a matter of public policy, the Division believes that all students have the right to learn in settings that promote equality of opportunity, dignity and respect. As such students are expected to foster a sense of belonging among students. The purpose of the Student Code of Conduct are to:

● establish and maintain a welcoming, caring, respectful and safe learning environment that fosters diversity and nurtures a sense of belonging and a positive sense of self;
● establish and maintain an appropriate balance between individual and collective rights, freedoms, and responsibilities in the school community;
● identifies the expectations for student behaviour while at school, at a school-related activity or while engaging in an activity outside of school time if the conduct negatively affects a member of the school or interferes with the school environment; and
● address issues such as consequences for unacceptable behaviour


SCOPE

This procedure applies to staff and students.


DEFINITIONS

Respect: To show regard or consideration for others.

School Community: Includes students, school staff, school council, parents/guardians, community members and others (including the Board and Division Office) with ties to the interests of the neighborhood school and school division.

Violent/Threat Making/High Risk Behaviours that may require an Assessment/Intervention: Immediate: A threat to harm and being in possession of a weapon High Risk: Being in possession of a weapon, sexual intimidation, fire setting, making bomb threats and threats to kill or injure others. Worrisome: Drawing pictures, writing stories or making vague statements that do not, of themselves, constitute uttering threats but are causing concern because of their violent or destructive content.

Bullying: Bullying is a relationship problem and is an assertion of interpersonal power through aggression. It involves repeated and hostile or demeaning behaviour by an individual in the school community where the behaviour is intended to cause harm, fear of distress to one or more other individuals in the school community, including psychological harm or harm to an individual’s reputation and is marked by an imbalance of power.
Bullying may include, but is not limited to: Repeated incidences of physical aggression and assault; extortion; verbal or written threats; social alienation; including degrading comments with regard to race, gender, religion or sexual orientation; teasing, put downs and humiliation; threatening looks, gestures or actions; hurtful rumors; false accusations; or the use of technology to disseminate hurtful intentions. Bullying is NOT Social Conflict. A disagreement or difference in perspective and is a normal part of social interaction. Students may require support to learn how to resolve their conflicts respectfully and productively.

  • The four most common types of bullying are:
    Verbal Bullying—repeated name calling, sarcasm, teasing, spreading rumours, threatening, making references to one’s culture, ethnicity, race, religion, gender, or sexual orientation, unwanted comments.
  • Social (Relational) Bullying—repeated mobbing, scapegoating, purposely excluding others from a group to cause harm, humiliating others, gestures or graffiti intended to put others down.
  • Physical Bullying—repeated hitting, poking, pinching, chasing, shoving, coercing, destroying possessions, unwanted sexual touching.
  • Cyber Bullying—repeated use of the internet or text messaging to intimidate, put down or spread rumours about someone, including anonymous acts.

Discrimination: Negative differential treatment of a person or group on the basis of race, religious beliefs, colour, gender, gender identity, gender expression, physical disability, mental disability, age, ancestry, place of origin, marital status, source of income, family status or sexual orientation.

Inclusive: A way of thinking and acting that demonstrates universal acceptance of, and belonging, for all members of the school community.

Intimidation: Behaviour which is reasonably known to cause fear of injury or harm.

Restorative Practices: A practice that evolved out of Restorative Justice. It is a process to involve those who have a stake in a specific offence and to collectively identify and address harms, needs and obligations, in order to heal and put things as right as possible. While there are different processes under the ‘restorative justice’ umbrella, the underlying principles remain the same.


PROCEDURES

1. Section 31 of the Education Act states: A student, as a partner in education, has the responsibility to:  

1.1 Attend school regularly and punctually,

1.2 be ready to learn and actively engage in and diligently pursue the student's education, 

1.3 ensure that the student’s conduct contributes to a welcoming, caring, respectful and safe learning environment that respects diversity and fosters a sense of belonging,

1.4 respect the rights of others in the school,

1.5 refrain from, report and not tolerate bullying or bullying behaviour towards others in the school, whether or not it occurs within the school building, during the school day or by electronic means,

1.6 comply with the rules of the school and the policies of the board, 

1.7 co-operate with everyone authorized by the board to provide education programs and other services,

1.8 be accountable to the student's teachers and other school staff for the student's conduct, and

1.9 positively contribute to the student’s school and community.

2. Each school is expected to develop standards of student behavior and ensure that they are known to students and parents. Schools will develop a School Code of Conduct what will address respect, harassment, discrimination, and bullying, along with possible interventions and consequences. When developing a School Code of Conduct, school shall consider core values such as belonging, citizenship, diversity, fairness and respect.

3. It should be noted that students are responsible for their behavior to the school Principal or designate while traveling to or from school, or while involved in any regular extra-curricular or co-curricular activity sponsored by the school. Students are to refrain from engaging in unacceptable behaviour. While school staff are not able to control what students do outside of school, where that behaviour spills into the school environment, there may be consequences for the behaviour. Unacceptable student behaviour may be grounds for intervention and disciplinary action. A misbehaviour may also provide an opportunity for critical learning in the area of personal accountability and responsibility, the development of empathy, conflict resolution, communication, and social skills development.

4. Progressive discipline steps shall be considered when a student exhibits behaviour, or encourages behaviour that is contrary to the maintenance of a welcoming, caring, respectful and safe environment.

5. Each school shall develop progressive discipline steps as consequences for non-compliance with established rules and regulations.

6. Consequences of unacceptable behaviour take into account the student’s age, maturity, individual circumstances, and frequency of misconduct. The specific circumstance of the situation and of the student shall be taken into account when determining appropriate consequences.

7. While this code of conduct addresses consequences for inappropriate behaviour, support shall be provided to students impacted by inappropriate behaviour and to those students who engage in inappropriate behaviour.

8. Failure to meet expectations for behaviour and conduct may result in some or all of the following interventions to be applied by, or under authority of the school principal (the following is not an exhaustive list).

a) Problem solving, monitoring, or reviewing behaviour expectations with student and reprimand.

b) Restorative justice practices.

c) Parental involvement.

d) Temporary removal of privileges.

e) Assignment of a student to an alternative supervised location.

f) Temporary exclusion of the student from class.

g) In-school or out-of-school suspension.

h) Suspension from riding the school bus.

i) Behavioural contract with student.

j) Assignment of designated tasks.

k) Assessment of student to develop appropriate programming.

l) Referral to the provincial attendance board.

m) Involvement of police, and/or expulsion from school (by the Board of Trustees)

9. For the protection of staff and students in the Division and to prevent potentially violent behaviours, school staff may, in specific circumstance, be required to use reasonable measures, including restraint, to manage or subdue a student in extreme cases and not on an ongoing basis, who is out of control or unresponsive to direction, or where lack of intervention could expose the student or others in the vicinity to harm.


REFERENCE AND LINKS

Education Act


HISTORY

2018 Feb 14 Reviewed
2018 Apr 30 Reviewed
2019 Nov 26 Reviewed