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- BIKE RIDERS
- BUS INFORMATION
- CHEATING/PLAGIARISM (Academic Dishonesty)
- CLUBS AND ACTIVITIES
- DELAYED OPENING/EMERGENCY CLOSING INFORMATION
- ELECTRONIC DEVICES AND GAMES (Cell Phones, Game Devices, CD Players, etc.)
- FIELD TRIPS
- FOOD ALLERGIES
- FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE
- FIRE DRILLS AND EMERGENCY PREPAREDNESS
- FUND-RAISING/SERVICE PROJECTS
- HOMEWORK and DAILY INDEPENDENT READING
- LOST AND FOUND
- LIBRARY/MEDIA CENTER
- PARENT CONFERENCES
- PARENT INVOLVEMENT/COMMUNICATIONS
- PARENT-TEACHER ORGANIZATION
- PROPERTY, LOCKERS, AND EQUIPMENT
- RECESS/PHYSICAL EXERCISE
- REPORT CARDS
- RESPONSIVE CLASSROOM APROACH/CAPTURING KIDS HEARTS METHODOLOGY
- SCHOOL CEREMONIES AND OBSERVANCES
- STUDENT ACADEMIC AND BEHAVIORAL SUPPORT
- STUDENT COMPLAINTS/GRIEVANCES: DUE PROCESS
- STUDENT SUCCESS PLANNING
- WHO DO I GO TO?
- AMERICAN WITH DISABILITIES ACT AND SECTION 504 OF THE REHABILITATION ACT OF 1973
- ANIMALS AND PETS
- BOARD OF EDUCATION
- CHAPERONE RESPONSIBILITIES
- CHILD ABUSE
- CLASS PLACEMENT
- COMPUTER RESOURCES
- DEFIBRILLATORS IN SCHOOLS (AED’s)
- DISTRIBUTION OF MATERIALS
- EXEMPTION FROM INSTRUCTION
- GREEN CLEANING PROGRAMS
- GUIDANCE AND COUNSELING
- HEALTH SERVICES
- LIMITED ENGLISH PROFICIENT (LEP) STUDENTS / ESOL
- MAGNET SCHOOLS
- PESTICIDE APPLICATION
- SAFETY/ACCIDENT PREVENTION
- SCHOOL ALTERNATIVES
- SCHOOL DISTRICT RECORDS
- SPECIAL PROGRAMS
- STUDENT RECORDS
- TEACHER AND PARAPROFESSIONAL QUALIFICATIONS
“A place to wonder; a wonderful place to learn.”
All Thompson Brook students have the right to a safe, respectful, and quality education. Their major responsibility is to come to school ready to learn. To accomplish this, students should have a good night’s sleep and a healthy breakfast. Students should have completed their homework and be appropriately dressed for school.
Be here and ready.
TBS Students demonstrate:
The material covered within this student handbook is intended as a method of communicating to students and parents regarding general Avon Public Schools (district) and/or Thompson Brook School (TBS) information, rules, and procedures and is not intended to either enlarge or diminish any Board policy, administrative regulation or negotiated agreement. Material contained herein may therefore be superseded by such Board policy, administrative regulation or negotiated agreement. Any information contained in this handbook is subject to unilateral revision or elimination from time-to-time without notice.
This booklet is written for our students and their parents. It contains required and useful information. Because it cannot be as personal a communication as we would like, we address students not directly as “you” but rather as “the student,” “students,” or “children.” Likewise, the term “the student’s parent” or “parent” may refer to the parent, legal guardian, or other person who has agreed to assume responsibility for the student. Both students and parents need to be familiar with the Thompson Brook School’s Student Code of Conduct which is intended to promote school safety and an atmosphere conducive for learning.
The Student Handbook is designed to be in harmony with Board policy. Please be aware that the handbook is updated yearly, while policy adoption and revision may occur throughout the year. Changes in policy that affect portions of this Handbook will be made available to students and parents through newsletters, web pages, and other communications.
Each student is encouraged to develop and achieve individual educational goals. The district will provide every student with equal educational opportunities regardless of race, color, creed, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, national origin, religion, age, economic status, marital status, or disability. No student will be excluded on such basis from participating in or having access to any course offerings, student athletics, counseling services, employment assistance, extracurricular activities or other school resources. Programs and activities shall be accessible and usable by individuals with disabilities as prescribed by law. The Avon Public Schools designates a district compliance officer, who will coordinate compliance with the nondiscrimination requirements of Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973.
Avon Public Schools Mission Statement
Our mission is to inspire in each student a joy and passion for learning and a commitment to excellence, personal integrity, and social responsibility.
Avon Public Schools Statement of Beliefs
We educate students intellectually, socially, emotionally, and physically to acquire knowledge and skills, to develop creativity and character, and to pursue their interests, realize their potential, and meet the challenges in a constantly changing world.
We believe that…
We are committed to…
(Adopted by the Board of Education April 24, 2012)
The school day begins at 8:20 AM and ends at 2:55 PM. Students may enter the building when the signal sounds at 7:55 AM. At this time students will go directly to their classrooms where they will be supervised by their regular classroom teachers. There is no supervision prior to 7:55 AM therefore students are not allowed on school grounds without parental supervision or unless previously arranged by a teacher.
Families are encouraged to use the bus transportation provided by the district. Parents who choose to drive their children to school will use the south entrance (facing Thompson Road) parking lot. The south entrance will be supervised by a staff member from 7:55 AM to 8:15 AM only. After 8:15 AM students are required to enter through the main doors. Students who arrive after 8:20 AM are late and must be signed in by a parent.
Connecticut state law requires parents to make sure that their children between the ages of 5 to 18 attend school regularly. Daily attendance is a key factor in student success, thus any absence from school is an educational loss to the student. These rules are designed to minimize student absenteeism while providing students the opportunity to make up school work missed due to a legitimate absence.
A student is considered to be “in attendance” if present at his/her assigned school, or an activity sponsored by the school, such as a field trip, for at least half of the regular school day. A student serving an out-of-school suspension or an expulsion will always be considered absent.
Every attempt should be made to confine necessary appointments to after school, weekends, and vacation periods. When a parent determines that an absence is necessary, parents are requested to contact the school nurse by 8:00 AM on the day of the absence by telephoning the school. Please call 860-404-4870 and press 5374 to reach the school nurse. A written excuse to the school is still required. The student should submit the written excuse directly to the office upon returning to school.
As all absences are considered unexcused until a written note is received, parents will still receive an automated call for the absence.
A student’s absence from school shall be considered “excused” if a written documentation of the reason for such absence has been submitted within ten (10) school days of the student’s return to school and meets the following criteria:
A. For absences one through nine, a student’s absences from school are considered “excused when the student’s parent/guardian approves such absence and submits appropriate documentation to school officials.”
B. Students receive an excused absence for the tenth absence and all absences thereafter, when they are absent from school for the following reasons:
1. Student illness, verified by a licensed medical professional, regardless of the length of the absence.
2. Student’s observance of a religious holiday. (Parent note required)
3. Death in the student’s family or other emergency beyond the control of the student’s family. (Parent note required)
4. Court appearance which is mandated. (Parent note required)
5. The lack of transportation that is normally provided by the district other than the one the student attends.
6. Extraordinary educational opportunities pre-approved by district administration and in accordance with Connecticut State Department of Education guidelines. (Parent note required)
The responsibility for makeup of work lies with the student, not the teacher. Unless a student has an extended illness, all makeup privileges must be completed within a period of time not longer than twice the length of the student’s absence. (Example: If a student is absent two school days, he/she has four school days to make up the work missed.)
Unexcused absences are those which do not fall under any of the excused absences. Students who have unexcused absences may be denied makeup privileges. Such absences may also be reflected in the student’s final grade. Absences which are the result of school or district disciplinary action are excluded from the definitions.
Although the school will maintain records and keep parents informed within the limit of its capability, parents and students are expected to keep accurate attendance records and compare them to report cards. Parents are also encouraged to contact the main office, teacher, and administrators to get help in verifying attendance and attendance records at any time during the year.
Leaving School Grounds/Release of Students From School
Under no circumstances may a student leave the school or school grounds during school hours without permission from his/her parents or guardians and school administration. In the event it is necessary for a student to be dismissed early, a parent or guardian should send a written request to the office. Telephone requests for early dismissal of a student shall be honored only if the caller can be positively identified as the student’s parent or guardian. Children of single-parent families will be released only upon the request of the parent whom the court holds directly responsible for the child and who is identified as such in the school records, unless prior arrangements have been made with the school. Arrangements should be made with the building administrator on the parent or guardian to pick up the student in the school office.
If someone other than a parent/guardian picks up the student, the person appearing in the school office should bring a note of identification from the parent or guardian.
Students who are not in their homeroom by 8:20 AM are considered tardy and must report directly to the office. A student discovered on school grounds who has not signed in at the office will also be considered tardy. A student who is repeatedly tardy may be considered truant. Students may be subject to disciplinary action if the principal determines that tardiness is excessive.
A student age five to eighteen inclusive with 4 (four) unexcused absences in one month or 10 (ten) unexcused absences in a school year will be considered a truant. Disciplinary action may include after school detention for the amount of time missed. Tests and academic work missed in class that day may be recorded as a zero grade. Parents have the responsibility to assist school officials in remedying and preventing truancy. The Superintendent of Schools will file a written complaint with Superior Court Juvenile Matters if the parent fails to cooperate with the school in trying to solve the student’s truancy problem. Information about truancy will also be posted in the annual strategic school profile reports.
There are times when classes, grades, teams or the entire school may gather for assembly programs. These programs are arranged to bring information or entertainment to the student community. A student’s conduct in assemblies must meet the same standards as in the classroom.
There are two bike racks located at the front (west) side of the building by the office. Students must have written permission from their parents to ride their bikes to school and an appropriate lock to secure it. The school is not responsible for damage to or theft of bikes. Children under 13 years of age are required to wear a helmet. Students should plan ahead for cases of inclement weather and know the backup plan established by the family. Fill out the form provided by the office if riding a bike to school.
Students are to ride their assigned bus only. If there is a need for an exception, requests may be made to the Transportation Coordinator at the central office, 860-404-4700. For bus behavior expectations, please go to “Transportation” listed under the “Student and School Safety” section of this handbook.
All eating is to be done in the cafeteria. Food is generally not permitted elsewhere in the building. Rules of cleanliness are to be observed at all times. Misconduct in the cafeteria may be cause for receiving an assigned seat or such other disciplinary action deemed appropriate for the misconduct.
The district participates in the National School Lunch Program and offers to students nutritionally balanced lunches daily. Free and reduced price lunches are available based on financial need. Information and applications for this program are found on the district website.
It is the intent of the Board of Education that schools take a proactive effort to encourage students to make nutritious food choices. Food and beverages offered for sale to students in the cafeteria will meet federal and state standards and guidelines. Students will enjoy a nutrition based meal prepared with high quality fresh and local ingredients whenever possible.
Lunch room guidelines:
1. I can stay in my seat and speak with an inside voice to others at my table.
2. I can stay in line and not cut in front of others.
3. I can clear the table when directed by the lunch duty person.
4. I can follow the recycling guidelines and dispose of trash properly.
5. I can clean my space at the table and the floor around me.
6. I can wait to be dismissed by the duty person when my area is properly cleaned.
7. I can ask permission to leave the cafeteria and sign out in the log book provided.
TBS recognizes the importance of celebrations. Occasional celebrations help our students maintain a healthy balance of learning and fun. An important part of our role is to ensure that celebrations do not disrupt the learning process. Additionally, TBS adheres to Avon’s wellness policy that recognizes the importance of wellness, good nutrition and an active lifestyle in the overall health of our students. The following guidelines are designed to allow for successful celebrations without infringing upon academic time.
Celebrations should align with the needs of the classroom and be approved by the teacher. Recognition of a student’s birthday will be included in the morning announcements. Classroom parties for birthdays are not allowed. A parent who wishes to further recognize his/her child’s birthday at school has several options:
1. Make a non-perishable food donation at TBS that will be brought to the Avon Food Bank.
2. Contact the school librarian to purchase a book for the TBS library collection. The parent chooses if they wish to have a book template on the inside of the book’s cover and/or his/her child’s name on the Birthday Book chart.
3. Make a donation to the PTO in the child’s name, or anonymously.
CHEATING/PLAGIARISM (Academic Dishonesty)
Students are expected to pursue their school work with integrity and honesty. Cheating and plagiarism demonstrates a lack of integrity and character. That is inconsistent with district goals and values. All forms of cheating and plagiarism are not acceptable. The misrepresenting by students of homework, class work, tests, reports, or other assignments as if they were entirely their own work shall be considered forms of cheating and/or plagiarism. Consequences of cheating and/or plagiarism shall be academic in nature unless repeated incidences require disciplinary action. Consequences for cheating will take into account the grade level of the student and the severity of the misrepresentation.
CLUBS AND ACTIVITIES
There are many opportunities for students to explore their special interests through clubs and activities. These opportunities are organized by the PTO and/or teachers and may be held before or after school. Activities change from year to year. Students are informed of these activities through PTO posting on the website, announcements, signups, and/or flyers distributed to students in homeroom.
DELAYED OPENING/EMERGENCY CLOSING INFORMATION
In the event school has a delayed opening (two hours is the standard time) or is closed because of bad weather or another emergency, announcements will be made. Information regarding school cancellation will be delivered automatically to parents through our automated messaging service. This service relies on the accuracy of the information provided by the parent at the time of their child’s enrollment. This information can be updated. For assistance, contact the school’s secretary who can assist you with this process. School closing information is also shared through local radio, television, or by accessing the school’s website. Please do not call the radio stations, police, schools or the superintendent.
Dismissal begins with announcements at 2:55 PM. Names are announced over the PA system for students whose parents called during the school day to change dismissal plans from the bus to parent pick up. All students should remain quiet while buses are called.
Parents who choose to pick up their children at the end of the school day will use the south entrance (facing Thompson Road) parking lot. Parents are required to sign out their children at the time of pickup. Parents who plan to pick up their child at the end of a specific day are asked to write a brief note or call the main office before 2:30 PM in order for the child’s name to be added to the dismissal list. If anyone other than a parent/guardian is picking up a student, a permission note is required prior to dismissal.
ELECTRONIC DEVICES AND GAMES (Cell Phones, Game Devices, CD Players, etc.)
Students are not permitted to use such items as pagers, radios, CD players, tape recorders, camcorders, DVD players, cameras, electronic game devices, messaging devices, or cell phones during the school day, unless prior permission has been obtained from the principal. Without such permission, the items will be collected by teachers and turned into the principal. The principal will determine whether to return the item at the end of the day to be taken home by the student or whether the parent will be contacted to pick up the item. Any disciplinary action will be in accordance with the Student Code of Conduct.
These items must be stored in lockers or backpacks upon entering the building. In no case will any personal communication device be allowed that provides for a wireless, unfiltered connection to the Internet or which has the capacity to take photographs of any kind. Students found to be using any electronic communication devices in violation of Board policy and school rules shall be subject to disciplinary action. Further, a student may be disciplined for creating and/or distributing written or electronic material, including Internet material, social media, and blogs, that cause substantial disruption to school operations or interferes with the rights of other students or staff members.
Certain areas of the school will be accessible to students before and after school for specific purposes. Students are expected to remain in the area in which their activity is scheduled to take place. After dismissed, and unless involved in a teacher/staff supervised activity, students are expected to leave the campus immediately.
Materials that are part of the basic educational program are provided without charge to students. A student is expected, however, to provide his or her own supplies of pencils, erasers, and notebooks. The student may be required to pay certain other fees or deposits, including:
1. Club dues.
2. Security deposits.
3. The materials for a class project that the student will keep.
4. Personal physical education apparel.
5. Voluntary purchases of pictures, publications, yearbooks, etc.
6. Student accident insurance.
7. Insurance on school-owned instruments and instrument rental.
8. Fees for damaged library books and school-owned equipment.
9. Membership dues in voluntary clubs or student organizations and admission fees to extracurricular activities.
Field trips may be scheduled for educational, cultural, or extracurricular purposes. Any student whose behavior is considered detrimental to the well-being of other students may be barred from participation by the principal. While on a trip, all students are considered to be “in” school. This means that conduct and dress standards should be appropriate for the field trip activity. If there are specific requirements for dress, it will be stated in the field trip information sheet.
Students may not be picked up at a field trip site unless in an emergency situation. The parent of the student must contact the TBS office about the emergency and the office will contact the teacher to advise him/her of the situation. The parent will then be notified of the possibility for picking up the child. The bus will leave the field site on schedule. If the bus leaves prior to the parent arriving, he/she must pick up the child at TBS.
Avon Public Schools has a NO nut policy in place. The cafeteria has a designated “nut-free” table. In an effort to keep everyone as safe as possible, students are not to share their lunch with others.
The school is committed to providing a safe environment for students with food allergies and to support parents regarding food allergy management. A plan based upon guidelines promulgated by the State Department of Education will be implemented for each student for the management of students with life-threatening food allergies and glycogen storage disease.
Substitutions to the regular meal can be addressed with an Individualized Health Care Plan (IHCP) and an Emergency Care Plan (ECP) shall be developed and implemented for students identified with food allergies. Such students may also be eligible for accommodations and services under Section 504 and special education law.
The District’s specific plan for managing students with life-threatening food allergies will be posted on the District website.
Gum chewing is not permitted in the building or on school grounds at TBS, unless it is part of a student’s individual plan.
Students will not be denied opportunity to participate in any class or school sponsored activity because of inability to pay for material fees, transportation costs, admission prices, or any other related expenses. The parent of a student who needs financial assistance for school activities should contact the homeroom teacher to request confidential help.
FIRE DRILLS AND EMERGENCY PREPAREDNESS
Fire drills are held at regular intervals as required by state law. Students must follow the exit directions posted in each classroom. A crisis response drill will be substituted for one of the required monthly school fire drills every three months. Such crisis response drill will be planned and conducted with the local law enforcement agency. Students are expected to follow the direction of teachers or others in charge quickly, quietly and in an orderly manner. When the fire alarm sounds, students are to proceed along the posted exit routes in a quick, quiet and calm manner. Students should not return to the building until the return signal is given.
Individual students, student groups or classes may be permitted to conduct fund-raising drives for approved school purposes. Students must get approval at least two weeks in advance. The approval process includes completing a Community Service Proposal Sheet, a meeting with the principal to review the project, and proposing the activity to the team leaders. Only approved projects will be allowed at school. School bake sales will not be granted permission.
Any food items sold as part of any fund-raising activity must meet the nutritional standards published by the Connecticut Department of Education. Beverage or foods not allowed for sale during regular school hours may be sold provided (1) the sale is in connection with an event occurring after the end of the regular school day or on the weekend, (2) the sale is at the location of such event, and (3) the food or beverage are not sold from a vending machine or school store.
HOMEWORK and DAILY INDEPENDENT READING
The purpose of homework is to help students become self-directed, independent learners and is related to the educational progress of the student. It serves to help all students reach their instructional goals.
Specific homework assignments may strengthen basic skills; extend classroom learning; stimulate and further interests; reinforce independent study skills; develop initiative, responsibility, and self-direction; stimulate worthwhile use of leisure time; and acquaint parents with the student’s work in school.
Students at TBS typically receive approximately 40-60 minutes a night of homework, Monday through Thursday. Students are also expected to work at a steady pace on long-term assignments (e.g., book reports, research papers). There will be no homework assignments over holidays, school breaks, or Holy Days. If your child takes an excessive amount of time to complete homework, please contact his/her teacher to share this information.
In addition to homework that is assigned, students are expected to read a minimum of 30 minutes daily. Students should follow their teacher’s directions on how to document this reading.
LOST AND FOUND
Any articles which are found in the school or on school grounds should be turned in at the (main office). Unclaimed articles will be disposed of at the end of December and March parent conferences and the end of the school year. Loss or suspected theft of personal or school property should be reported to the main office. “Lost and Found” is located in the cafeteria. Small personal items like jewelry are kept in the office. Students may check the lost and found before and after school, during lunch and recess, and with their teacher’s permission during the day.
Students are invited to use the books, magazines, newspapers, videos, CD’s and other materials, including computers, located in the library/media center. Students are responsible for any material they sign out. Materials must be returned to the librarian or the assistant at the circulation desk. Students must pay for any materials they lose or damage.
Guidelines have been established for the use of the Internet. Student violations of the guidelines can result in the termination of access privileges and in disciplinary actions. It is the policy of the Board of Education that all student must sign an acceptable (Responsible) use policy which indicates that a student agrees to use the Internet exclusively for educational purposes. Each contract must also include a signature from the student’s parent/guardian.
Parents are encouraged to become partners in their child’s educational successes. Scheduled conferences occur twice per year, upon completion of the first and second marking periods. These conferences take place during the day, between 12:10 PM and 3:10 PM and in the evening, between 6:30 PM and 9:00 PM to accommodate parent schedules. Additional conferences with teachers may be held at any time during the school year. Parents and students, as well as teachers, counselors or administrators may initiate a conference. A parent or student may arrange a conference with an individual member of the school staff or a group conference with school staff members. Conferences are held during school hours but every effort will be made to accommodate parent schedules.
Education succeeds best when there is a strong partnership between home and school based on communications and interactions. Parents/guardians are urged to encourage their children to put a high priority on education and to make the most of their educational opportunities available. Parents/guardians should become familiar with all of the child’s school activities and with the District’s academic programs, including special programs. Attendance at parent-teacher conferences, participation in school parent organizations, attendance at board of education meetings and being a school volunteer are strongly encouraged.
The TBS PTO is a vital link between the school, community and the parents it serves. Thus, parents are urged to join and take an active part in the TBS PTO. The purpose of the PTO is to promote the welfare of children and to foster the intelligent cooperation of parents, teachers, and administrators in the education of their children. The PTO encourages an exchange of ideas and information between educators, parents, and children through its programs, special projects, and publications. PTO meetings are held in the TBS cafeteria. Dates and times are posted on the PTO website, accessible through the TBS website, and all parents and teachers are invited to attend.
PROPERTY, LOCKERS, AND EQUIPMENT
It is the policy of the Board to hold students responsible for any loss of or damage to the property of the school under the jurisdiction of the Board when the loss or damage occurs through fault of the student.
Any student damaging or defacing school property will be financially liable for restoring the property regardless of the condition of the property at the time of the destructive act, in addition to any other discipline up to and including arrest or civil prosecution as deemed appropriate.
In addition, anyone who witnesses such an act and fails to report it to the proper authorities will be considered as having contributed to that action. Such charges for damaged property will be exactly those which the school must incur to repair the damage.
Each student is assigned a desk, hall locker and/or other equipment. These items are the property of the school, loaned to students for their convenience during the school year, and should be kept in good order and not abused.
Searches of desks or lockers may be conducted at any time there is reasonable cause to believe that they contain articles or materials prohibited by district policy. Parents will be notified if any prohibited items are found in the student’s desk or locker.
Students should not attempt to repair school equipment but should notify their teacher immediately if it isn’t function properly. Any damage done will be the responsibility of the person to whom it was loaned for the current year. Students may not bring in locks from home and attach to assigned lockers. Students are warned not to bring large sums of money or valuables to school, liability for these items remains with the student.
All students enrolled in elementary school shall have included in the regular school day, time devoted to physical exercise, of not less than twenty minutes in total. This requirement may be altered by a Planning and Placement Team (PPT) for a child requiring special education and related services. This daily period of physical activity for elementary school students can be a combination of planned physical education classes, recess, and/or teacher-directed classroom activities. The period of physical activity will not be taken away from an elementary student as a form of punishment. In addition, students in all grades, K-12, cannot be assigned physical activity as a form of punishment.
Recess time is generally scheduled either immediately before or after their normally scheduled lunch period. On early dismissal days, recess will not be held. Recess provides all students with an opportunity to socialize, to exercise, and to play in a less structured setting. It also allows children to make friends and to develop the ability to occupy free time creatively. When the temperature outdoors is 20 degrees or warmer, children will go outside for recess. When the temperature drops below 20 degrees or when the wind is blowing, causing the wind chill factor to be below 20 degrees, or when there is any precipitation, the students will remain indoors.
If children are well enough to come to school, then they are well enough to go outside; conversely, if children are not well enough to go outside, then they may not be well enough to be in school.
1. I can take turns when others are waiting to use the equipment.
2. I can wear safe footwear to participate: sneakers or rubber soled shoes with a back are necessary; shoelaces will be tied properly.
3. I can respect the playground equipment: wheelchair accessible equipment, adjustable basketball hoop, and maze tilt table, are available for all to use properly.
Report cards are issued to students three times a year: Early December, mid-March, and at the end of the school year in June. Students are expected to deliver report cards to their parents. Report card envelopes must be signed by the parents and returned to the school within two days, for the first two marking periods.
RESPONSIVE CLASSROOM APPROACH/CAPTURING KIDS HEARTS METHODOLOGY
TBS has four overriding school rules that support/frame its goals of increasing social skills and academic engagement, establishing positive classroom and school climate, increasing learner investment and independence, and keeping disruptive behavior to a minimum.
- Be safe
- Be caring
- Be respectful
- Be here and ready
TBS students who make poor choices and do not follow the four basic school tenets will first be spoken to by the adult in charge, who may assign a logical consequence. Should behaviors become a pattern, teachers will notify the office. The assistant principal or principal may remove the student from a class.
At this point, the student may be subjected to one of more of the following:
1. Discuss the event with the assistant principal or principal.
2. Receive appropriate discipline – loss of privileges, community service for the school, write an apology, lunch detention, after school detention, etc.
3. Have parents contacted by phone or email.
Continued misbehavior and significant misconduct may lead to an in-school suspension. Please see the “Student and School Safety” section for additional information on student expectations, conduct, and levels of discipline.
SCHOOL CEREMONIES AND OBSERVANCES
The school district recognizes the value of certain ceremonies and observances in promoting patriotism and good citizenship among the students. Therefore, activities in schools commemorating national holidays such as Veterans Day and Memorial Day are encouraged. Avon Public Schools reminds students, faculty, and administration of the variety of religious beliefs, and all are urged to be conscious of and respect the sensitivities of others.
Activities that relate to a religious holiday or theme will be planned to ensure that the activity is not devotional, and that students of all faiths can join without feeling that they are betraying their own beliefs. Therefore,
1. School and class displays shall not be overly religious, and church-like scenery will be avoided;
2. Religious music shall not entirely dominate the selection of music; and
3. Program notes and illustrations shall not be religious or sectarian.
Students shall be given the option to be excused from participating in those parts of a program or curriculum involving a religious theme which conflicts with their own religious beliefs. If a parent or student has any questions regarding the use of religious music, artwork and/or symbols in a particular class or activity, the teacher should be contacted.
An opportunity will be provided, at the beginning of each school day, for students to observe an appropriate period of silent meditation and to recite the Pledge of Allegiance. Participation in these activities is voluntary. Nonparticipants are expected to maintain order and decorum appropriate to the school environment.
STUDENT ACADEMIC AND BEHAVIORAL SUPPORT
Avon Public Schools employs a tiered support model to insure that all students are performing to their full potential by closely monitoring student academic and social emotional development. To assist in the identification of students at risk for meeting grade level expectations, universal assessments are used systematically throughout the school year. Once identified, areas of concern are targeted using a tiered support model that begins with our district’s core curriculum differentiated to meet student need and advances as needed through tiers of intervention.
For students in need of Special Education programs, a Planning and Placement Team (PPT) is designed to provide communication and decision-making at the school level concerning the effective use of available resources. The team is also responsible for follow-up and periodic review of all students presently in Special Education and special services programs.
Any child identified as possibly needing special education and/or related services must be referred to a special education Planning & Placement Team for evaluation (PPT). The PPT will determine whether special education services are required. Parents must give their consent before any evaluation can be done or any services can begin. An Individualized Education Plan, based upon the diagnostic findings of the evaluation study will be developed by the PPT, with parental involvement.
PROCEDURES FOR RESOURCE ASSISTANCE
If a teacher thinks there is a need for reading or math resource help for a student, the following steps will be followed:
1. All students participate in Tier 1 instruction that follows the district curricula. Students benefit from well-planned instruction that includes the use of effective teaching strategies, differentiation of presentation, material and activities as needed and the application of learning in meaningful, real world problems.
2. Teachers monitor student progress using formative and summative assessments, as well as universal screenings given to all student throughout the year.
3. If a student is unable to maintain adequate progress and meet grade level benchmarks teachers will attend to the area of weakness by providing short term interventions, known as Tier 1 Interventions, targeted to specific student needs and monitor student response to the interventions. At this time teachers can consult their grade level team, building specialists or department coordinators to develop an individual intervention plan or access additional resources. Student achievement levels and areas of concern are also communicated to parents.
4. A student not making sufficient progress in identified areas noted on progress monitoring assessments, district and/or diagnostic assessments will be provided the next level of support. Tier 2 interventions are designed to remediate the root cause preventing a student from achieving through the use of a more intense intervention plan. This plan is often implemented by a building specialist or intervention tutor. To access this support teachers would provide this information to the designated building administrator, specialists and/or department coordinators responsible for scheduling interventions. This communication can take place during a universal screening cycle, at a Student Assistance Team meeting or at the request of a teacher. The need to make changes to a student’s intervention plans and the reason are communicated to parents by the classroom teacher.
5. If a student is not making sufficient progress in a Tier 2 Intervention the student’s intervention plan is reviewed and changed as needed. The result may indicate the need to increase the level of support once again to by decreasing group size, increasing the frequency of intervention, and/or altering the instructional materials or approach. These students will move to Tier 3 when needed. The primary difference between Tier 2 and 3 interventions is the ratio of students to interventionist as well as the frequency and intensity of intervention. Tier 3 intervention students continue to receive strong Tier 1 instruction and all aspects of Tier 2 intervention that were effective with the addition of more prescriptive, targeted instruction. Again, the need for changes are communicated and discussed with the designated building administrator, specialists, department coordinators and parents.
STUDENT COMPLAINTS/GRIEVANCES: DUE PROCESS
A student or parent who has a complaint should first bring the matter to the appropriate teacher or staff member. If the outcome is not satisfactory, a conference with the principal should be requested in a timely fashion. If the outcome of the conference with the principal is not satisfactory, a conference with the Superintendent or designee can be requested following the conference with the principal. If the outcome of this conference is not satisfactory, the student or parent may appear before the Board of Education, in accordance with Board policy.
A student and/or parent with a complaint regarding possible discrimination on the basis of gender should contact Title IX Coordinator. A complaint or concern regarding the placement of a student with disabilities concerning special education or programs and services should be discussed with the principal, assistant principal, or the Director of Pupil Services.
STUDENT SUCCESS PLANNING
Beginning July 1, 2012 and each year thereafter, a student success plan will be created for each student, starting in sixth grade that includes the student’s career and academic choices in grades six through 12 inclusive. Such student success plan shall include a student’s career and academic choices in grades six to twelve, inclusive. The Student Success Plan (SSP) in an individualized student driven plan developed to address every student’s needs and interests to help the student stay connected in school and to achieve postsecondary educational and career goals.
School policy strongly encourages the scheduling of family vacations and trips during times which coincide with school breaks. Family vacations or trips that take place when school is in session and cause a student’s cumulative absences to exceed 10, will be considered “unexcused absences.” Teachers will not provide work in advance of the vacation, nor will teachers be expected to reteach the classes missed due to the vacation.
Who do I go to?
Question or Problem
Go speak with, First
Adult on duty
Your classroom teacher and/or parent
Counselor, assistant principal or principal
Adult on duty
Your classroom teacher and/or parent
Counselor, assistant principal or principal
Your classroom teacher and/or parent
Counselor, assistant principal or principal
Your classroom teacher
Assistant principal or principal
Counselor, assistant principal or principal
Suggestions for school
Your classroom teacher
Assistant principal or principal
*Unless the problem is about the bus driver, then skip this step.
Student and School Safety
The Avon Board of Education has the responsibility to maintain a safe school environment for everyone.
To ensure that no person ever feels threatened or intimidated by others, the school district expressly forbids any form of bullying behavior by students, teachers, administrators, or other employees.
Bullying behavior by any student in the Avon Public Schools is strictly prohibited, and such conduct may result in disciplinary action, including suspension and/or expulsion from school. “Bullying” means the repeated use by one or more students of a written, oral or electronic communication, such as cyberbullying, directed at or referring to another student attending school in the same school district or a physical act or gesture by one or more students repeatedly directed at another student attending school in the same school district that:
1. Causes physical or emotional harm to such student or damage to such student’s property,
2. Places such student in reasonable fear of harm to himself or herself, or of damage to his or her property,
3. Creates a hostile environment at school for such student,
4. Infringes on the rights of such student at school, or
5. Substantially disrupts the education process or the orderly operation of a school.
Bullying shall include, but not be limited to, a written, verbal or electronic communication or physical act or gesture based on any actual or perceived differentiating characteristic, such as race, color, religion, ancestry, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, socioeconomic status, academic status, physical appearance, or physical, mental, developmental or sensory disability, or by association with an individual or group who has or is perceived to have one or more of such characteristics.
Students who engage in any act of bullying, on school grounds, at a school-sponsored or school-related activity, function or program whether on or off school grounds, at a school bus stop, on a school bus or other vehicle owned, leased or used by the Board of Education, or through the use of an electronic device or an electronic mobile device owned, leased or used by the Board of Education, and outside of the school setting if such bullying:
1. Creates a hostile environment at school for the victim,
2. Infringes on the rights of the victim at school, or
3. Substantially disrupts the education process or the orderly operation of a school.
Students and/or parents may file verbal or written complaints concerning suspected bullying behavior, and students shall be permitted to anonymously report acts of bullying to school employees. Any report of suspected bullying behavior will be promptly reviewed. If acts of bullying are verified, prompt disciplinary action may be taken against the perpetrator, consistent with his/her rights of due process. Board policy and regulation set forth this prohibition and the related procedures in detail, and are available to students and their parents/guardians upon request.
Students and parents are permitted to make anonymous reports of bullying. Parent written reports and student anonymous reports will be investigated by the Safe School Climate Specialist but no disciplinary action shall be taken solely on the basis of an anonymous report.
The Safe School Climate Specialist is responsible for taking a bullying report and investigating the complaint. Parents of students involved in a verified act of bullying will be invited to attend at least one meeting at school.
Students are responsible for conducting themselves properly in a responsible manner appropriate to their age and level of maturity. The district has authority over students during the regular school day and while going to and from school on district transportation. This jurisdiction includes any school-related activity, regardless of time or location, and any off campus school-related misconduct, regardless of time or location.
Student responsibilities for achieving a positive learning environment in school or school related activities include:
1. Attending all classes, regularly and on time.
2. Being prepared for each class with appropriate materials and assignments.
3. Being dressed appropriately.
4. Showing respect toward others.
5. Behaving in a responsible manner.
6. Paying required fees and fines.
7. Abiding by the code of conduct.
8. Obeying all school rules, including safety rules, and rules pertaining to Internet safety.
9. Seeking change in school policies and regulations in an orderly and responsible manner, through appropriate channels.
10. Cooperating with staff investigations of disciplinary cases and volunteering information relating to a serious offense.
Students who violate these rules will be subject to disciplinary action and shall be referred when appropriate to legal authorities for violation of the law.
Students at school or school-related activities are prohibited from:
1. Engaging in academic dishonesty, including cheating, intentionally plagiarizing, wrongfully giving or receiving help during an academic examination and wrongfully obtaining test copies or scores.
2. Throwing objects that can cause bodily injury or damage property.
3. Leaving school grounds or school-sponsored events without permission.
4. Directing profanity, vulgar language, or obscene gestures toward other students or staff.
5. Disobeying directives from school personnel or school policies, rules, and regulations.
6. Being disrespectful or directing profanity, vulgar language, or obscene gestures toward teachers or other school employees.
7. Playing with matches, fire, or committing arson.
8. Committing robbery or theft.
9. Damaging or vandalizing property owned by the school, other students, or school employees.
10. Disobeying school rules on school buses.
11. Fighting, committing physical abuse, or threatening physical abuse.
12. Committing extortion, coercion, or blackmail; that is, forcing an individual to act through the use of force or threat of force.
13. Name-calling, making ethnic or racial slurs or derogatory statements that may substantially disrupt the school program or incite violence.
14. Engaging in inappropriate physical or sexual contact disruptive to the school environment or disturbing to other students.
15. Assaulting a teacher, staff member or other individual.
16. Selling, giving, delivering, possessing, using, or being under the influence of drugs such as: marijuana; a controlled substance or drug; or an alcoholic beverage.
17. Possessing a deadly weapon, dangerous instrument, firearm, martial arts weapon, or weapon facsimile.
18. Prescription drugs which are given to person other than who the drug is prescribed.
19. Smoking or using tobacco products.
20. Hazing, bullying
21. Behaving in any way that disrupts the school environment or educational process.
22. Using electronic devices during the school day in school buildings, without prior approval of the principal.
23. Violating the district’s Internet Safety policy.
24. Using or possessing a laser pointer unless under a staff member’s supervision and in the context of instruction.
25. Cheating, plagiarizing.
26. Threatening in any manner, including orally, in writing, or via electronic communication, a member of the school including any teacher, a member of the school administration or another employee, or a fellow student.
27. Taking, storing, disseminating, transferring, viewing or sharing of obscene, pornographic, lewd or otherwise illegal images or photographs, whether by electronic data transfer of other means, including but not limited to texting and emailing.
28. Violating any state or federal law which would indicate that the student presents a danger to any person in the school or to school property.
Students are subject to disciplinary action, including suspension and expulsion, for misconduct which is seriously disruptive of the educational process and is a violation of publicized Board of Education policy, even if such conduct occurs off-school property and during non-school time. In determining whether conduct is “seriously disruptive of the education process” for purposes of suspension and expulsion, the administration in cases of suspension, and the Board of Education or impartial hearing board, in matters of expulsion may consider, but consideration is not limited to (1) whether the incident occurred within close proximity of a school, (2) whether other students were involved, or whether there was gang involvement, (3) whether the conduct involved violence, threats of violence, or the unlawful use of a weapon and whether any injuries occurred, and (4) whether the conduct involved the use of alcohol.
Dangerous Weapons and Instruments
No guns, knives or any other objects, including martial arts weapons and facsimiles of weapons, capable of threatening or causing injury or death may be brought onto school grounds. Any object used to cause injury will be considered a weapon. Violators will be subject to arrest and prosecution, as well as, appropriate disciplinary action. Any student found to possess a weapon on school grounds or during a school-activity will be expelled from school.
An expelled student may apply for early readmission to school. Such readmission is at the discretion of the Board of Education (unless the Board has delegated authority for readmission decisions to the Superintendent). The Board or Superintendent, as appropriate, may condition such readmission on specified criteria.
Student dress may be regulated and students are encouraged to dress in clothing appropriate to the school situation. Restrictions on freedom of expression may be applied whenever the mode of dress is unsafe, disruptive or contrary to law.
Appropriate clothing is clean, comfortable and allows students to participate fully in all school activities.
This includes all classrooms, science labs, physical education activities, and recess. Appropriate clothing and accessories should be safe, modest and reflect respect for self and others. Clothing should not offend any person or group and not be a distraction in the learning environment. Unsafe, brief and revealing clothing are not appropriate apparel for school. Open-toe footwear will limit a student’s ability to safely participate in some school activities, such as in science labs, in the art room, physical education, and access to recess equipment.
As a sign of respect, hats, hoods, bandanas, and caps must not be worn in the building (unless for religious or health reasons). Students are allowed to wear these items when entering the school or during dismissal from the building, so as not to make it awkward as they are carrying items.
Administrators reserve the right to determine if clothing could cause a distraction.
Smoking or use of tobacco products is prohibited on school property or at any school-related or school-sanctioned activity, on or off school property as provided by state and federal law.
As stated in the CONDUCT section of this handbook, the school prohibits the manufacture, distribution, dispensing, possession or use of alcohol or controlled substances on school grounds or during school activities. Any student in violation of this will be subject to disciplinary action.
Substance abuse or distribution of drugs and/or drug paraphernalia including alcohol may indicate serious, underlying problems. Every effort will be made to offer student assistance, including early identification, referral for treatment to private or community agencies and aftercare support.
Disciplinary procedures will be administered with the best interests of the student, school population and community in mind and with due consideration of the rights of students. However, consideration must be given to the fact that substance abuse is illegal and subject to criminal prosecution. Unauthorized possession, distribution, sale or consumption of dangerous drugs, narcotics or alcoholic beverages are considered grounds for expulsion.
The district’s computer network and the Internet, whether accessed on campus or off campus, during or after school hours, may not be used for the purpose of harassment. All forms of harassment over the Internet, commonly known as cyber bullying, are unacceptable, a violation of district policy and of the district’s acceptable (Responsible) computer use policy and procedures. Cyberbullying means any act of bullying through the use of the Internet, interactive and digital technologies, cellular mobile telephone or other mobile electronic devices or any electronic communications.
Cyber bullying includes, but is not limited to, such misuses of technology as harassing, teasing, intimidating, threatening, or terrorizing another person by sending or posting inappropriate and hurtful e-mail messages, instant messages, text message, digital pictures or images, or website postings, including blogs. It is also recognized that the author (poster or sender) of the inappropriate material may be disguised or logged on as someone else.
Students and community members who believe they have been the victims of such misuses of technology as described, should not erase the offending material from the system. A copy of the material should be printed and brought to the attention of the Safe School Climate Specialist, the Principal or Director of Technology. All reports of cyberbullying will be investigated by the Safe School Climate Specialist.
In situations in which the cyberbullying originated from a non-school computer, but brought to the attention of school officials, any disciplinary action shall be based upon whether the conduct is determined to be severely disruptive of the educational process so that it markedly interrupts or severely impedes the day-to-day operation of school. Also, such conduct must be in violation of a publicized school policy. Such conduct includes, but is not limited to, threats, or making a threat off school grounds, to kill or hurt a teacher or student.
Disciplinary action may include loss of computer privileges, detention, suspension or expulsion. A communicated threat or a hate crime will be reported to the police.
Students will be provided instruction about appropriate online behavior.
A student who violates the district’s code of conduct shall be subject to disciplinary action. The (DISTRICT’S) disciplinary actions may include using one or more discipline management techniques, such as detention, removal from class, removal to an alternative education program, in school suspension, out of school suspension, and expulsion. Disciplinary measures will be appropriate for the offense. In addition, when a student violates the law that student may be referred to legal authorities for prosecution. Students are subject to discipline, up to an including suspension and expulsion for misconduct, which is seriously disruptive of the educational process and violates publicized board of education policy even if such conduct occurs off-school property and during non-school time.
A student may be detained outside of school hours on one or more days for violation of the code of conduct. The detention shall not begin, however, until the students’ parents have been notified of the reason for the detention (and can make arrangements for the student’s transportation on the day(s) of the detention).
A teacher may remove a student from a class when the student deliberately causes serious disruption of the teaching and learning process within the classroom. The teacher will notify school administrators immediately. A school administrator will review the incident and take appropriate action. School administrators will determine, using state guidelines, whether the suspension will be in-school or out-of-school.
The administration may suspend a student for an infraction of school rules. Suspension is defined as an exclusion from school privileges for not more than ten (10) consecutive days, provided such exclusion shall not extend beyond the end of the school year in which suspension was imposed.
However, no student shall be suspended without an informal hearing before the building principal or his/her designee at which time the student shall be informed of the reasons for the disciplinary action and given an opportunity to explain the situation, unless circumstances surrounding the incident require immediate removal. In such instance the informal hearing will be held during the suspension.
Suspension from school will result in loss of extracurricular and social privileges during the period of suspension.
For any student suspended for the first time and who has never been expelled, the administration may shorten the length of or waive the suspension period if the student successfully completes an administration-specified program and meets any other administration-required conditions, which shall not incur an expense to the student of his/her parents.
A teacher may remove a student from class when the student deliberately causes a serious disruption to the teaching and learning process within the classroom. The teacher will notify school administrators immediately. A school administrator will review the incident and take appropriate action.
Prior to an expulsion hearing, information concerning legal services that are provided free of charge or at a reduced rate that are available locally and how to access such services shall be provided to the student and his/her parent or guardian.
The Board of Education may expel a student from school privileges if, after a full hearing, the Board finds that the student’s conduct endangers person(s), property or the educational process or is in violation of a publicized Board policy. Students who have been expelled may be eligible for an alternative educational program.
Expulsion from school will result in the loss of all extra-curricular and social privileges during the period of expulsion.
For any student expelled for the first time and who has never been suspended, the Board of Education may shorten the length of or waive the expulsion period if the student successfully completes a Board specified program and meets any other conditions required by the Board. Such a Board specified program does not require the student or the parent/guardian of the student to pay for participation in the program.
Student possession and/or use of weapons, including martial arts weapons, or other dangerous instruments in any school building, on school grounds, in any school vehicle, or at any school sponsored activity is cause for expulsion for a calendar year. A student who offers illegal drugs for sale or distribution on or off school grounds is also cause for expulsion for a calendar year. The Board may modify the expulsion period on a case-by-case basis.
Whenever a student is expelled, notice of the expulsion and the conduct for which the student was expelled will be included on the student’s cumulative education record. The record will be expunged if the student graduates from high school and the expulsion was not for weapon possession and/or for the sale or distribution of illegal drugs.
If students expulsion is shortened or the expulsion period waived based upon the fact that the student was expelled for the first time, has never been suspended and successfully completed a Board specified program and/or met other conditions required by the Board, the notice of expulsion will be expunged from the cumulative educational record if the student graduates from high school or, if the Board so chooses, at the time the student completes the Board specified program and meets other Board required conditions.
A district student who has committed an expellable offense who seeks to return to a District school after having been in a juvenile detention center, the Connecticut Juvenile Training School or any other residential placement for one year or more, in lieu expulsion from the District, shall be permitted to return to the appropriate school setting within the District. Further, the District will not expel the student from any additional time for the offense(s).
Every child has the right to feel safe, valued and comfortable in school. No one else’s behavior should ever make children feel afraid or embarrassed because of their race, color, religion, national origin, sex, or any disability they may have. Students are expected to treat other students and district employees with courtesy and respect, to avoid any behaviors known to be offensive, and to stop those behaviors when asked or told to stop.
Parents are urged to reinforce with their child(ren) that if he/she is harassed or sees harassment happening to someone else that he/she should report the behavior to a teacher, the assistant principal, or the principal. To maintain a productive and positive learning environment, the Board of Education will make every attempt to halt any harassment of which they become aware by calling attention to this policy or by direct disciplinary action, if necessary.
A student who believes he/she has been harassed is encouraged to report the incident to his/her teacher or the principal. The allegations will be investigated and addressed and appropriate disciplinary action taken, where necessary.
Students are not permitted to possess or use laser pointers while on school property, while using District transportation, or while attending school-sponsored or school-related activities, whether on or off school property unless under a staff member’s supervision and in the contest of instruction. Laser pointers will be confiscated and students will be disciplined.
OUT OF SCHOOL MISCONDUCT
Students are subject to discipline, up to and including suspension and expulsion for misconduct which is seriously disruptive of the educational process and is a violation of a publicized board policy, even if such conduct occurs off-school property and during non-school time.
Examples of off-school conduct that may result in such discipline include but are not limited to:
1. Sale, possession, use, or distribution of dangerous weapons, including marital arts weapons;
2. Use, possession, or distribution of illegal drugs;
3. Violent conduct;
4. Making of a bomb threat;
5. Threatening to harm or kill another student or member of the staff; where any such activity has the reasonable likelihood of threatening the health, safety or welfare of school property, individuals thereon, and/or the educational process.
SCHOOL SECURITY AND SAFETY
Each school in the District (beginning July 1, 2014) will develop and implement a school security and safety plan based upon the standards issued by the Department of Emergency Services and Public Protection. Each school, as required by law, shall establish a school security and safety committee which will assist in the development and administration of the school’s security and safety plan. Each district school will conduct a security and vulnerability assessment every two years.
For the school year commencing July 1, 2014, and each school year thereafter, the District will develop, maintain and implement an emergency disaster preparedness and response plan (“School Security and Safety Plan”). The plan is based upon the standards promulgated by the Department of Emergency Services and Public Protection Development and implementation of the plan includes collaboration with local and state emergency responders, (law enforcement, fire department, emergency rescue squads and local public health administrators). The plan, representing an all hazards approach, utilizes the four recognized phases of crisis management: (1) mitigation/prevention, (2) preparedness, (3) response, (4) recovery.
SEARCH AND SEIZURE
The right to inspect desks, lockers and other equipment assigned to students may be exercised by school officials to safeguard students, their property and school property. An authorized school administrator may search a student’s locker or desk under the following conditions:
1. There is reason to believe that the student’s desk or locker contains contraband material.
2. The probable presence of contraband material presents a serious threat to the maintenance of discipline, order, safety and health in school.
This document serves as advance notice that school board policy allows desks and lockers to be inspected if the administration has reason to believe that materials injurious to the best interests of students and the school are contained therein.
Under special circumstances, school officials may search students, particularly if there is reasonable suspicion that a student possesses illegal matter, such as a dangerous weapon or illegal drugs. Students must be aware that such items are forbidden both on school property and at school-related activities.
The district wants all students to learn in an environment free from all forms of sexual harassment. Sexual harassment is against state and federal laws. It is unwelcome sexual attention from peers, teachers, staff or anyone with whom the victim may interact. Sexual harassment, whether verbal or physical, includes, but is not limited to the following: (Give examples which are age appropriate.) Any student who believes that he or she has been subjected to sexual harassment should report the alleged misconduct immediately to his/her teacher, social worker, guidance counselor, administrator, school nurse or any responsible individual with whom the student feels comfortable, either informally or through the filing of a formal complaint.
The district will notify the parents of all students involved in sexual harassment by student(s) when the allegations are not minor and will notify parents of any incident of sexual harassment or sexual abuse by an employee.
A complaint alleging sexual harassment by a student or staff member may be presented by a student and/or parent in a conference with the principal or designee or with the Title IX Coordinator.
SPECIAL NETWORKING SITES
Students may not access social media sites using district equipment, while on district property, or at district-sponsored activities unless the posting is approved by a district representative, teacher, or staff member. Social media websites are websites such as, but not limited to, Facebook, MySpace, You Tube, Flickr, Instagram, Snapchat, and Twitter.
The District will not be liable for information or comments posted by students on social media websites when the student is not engaged in district activities and not using district equipment. For safety purposes, the district employs both Internet filters and firewalls.
The School District reserves the right to monitor, inspect, copy, review and store at any time and without prior notice any and all usage of the computer network and Internet access and any and all information transmitted or received in connection with such usage. All such information files shall be and remain the property of Avon Public Schools and no user shall have any expectation of privacy regarding such materials.
TEXTBOOK CARE AND OBLIGATIONS
Students are responsible for the care of books and supplies entrusted to their use. They will be assessed for damage to textbooks, equipment or materials. In accordance with state law, the school reserves the right to withhold grades, transcripts, or report cards until the student pays for or returns the textbooks, library book or other educational materials.
School transportation privileges are extended to students conditioned upon their satisfactory behavior on the bus. Unsatisfactory student behavior on the bus may result in suspension of transportation services or such other disciplinary action that is appropriate for misconduct.
The following rules shall apply to student conduct on school transportation:
1. Passengers shall follow the driver’s directions at all times.
2. Passengers shall board and leave the bus in an orderly manner at the designated bus stop nearest their home.
3. Passengers shall not stand while the bus is in motion.
4. Passengers shall keep books, instrument cases, feet, and other objects out of the aisle of the bus.
5. Passengers shall not deface the bus and/or its equipment.
6. Passengers shall not extend head, hands, arms, or legs out of the window nor hold any object out of the window nor throw objects within or out of the bus.
7. Passengers shall not eat on the bus.
8. Usual classroom conduct shall be observed. Unruly conduct, including the use of obscene language, will subject the passenger to disciplinary action.
9. Upon leaving the bus, the passenger will wait for the driver’s signal before crossing in front of the bus.
10. Students must ride the bus to which they are assigned.
The following procedures shall be followed when a discipline concern arises on a bus serving a regular route or an extracurricular activity:
1. A conference involving the assistant principal, the student passenger, the driver, and the parent(s) may be required.
2. The assistant principal may suspend the student’s bus-riding privileges. If such a suspension occurs, the parents will be notified prior to the time the suspension takes effect.
3. In the case of serious misconduct that endangers the safety of other passengers or the driver, the driver shall have the authority to remove the student and call for law enforcement assistance. The principal and parents shall be notified of the situation as soon as possible. The student shall not be provided bus service again until a conference involving all persons listed above has been held.
Disciplinary sanctions and changes in transportation for a student with a disability shall be made in accordance with the provisions of the student’s Individual Education Plan (IEP).
A student seeking enrollment in Thompson Brook School for the first time or following attendance in another Connecticut public school district, out-of-state attendance, private school attendance or admission through a bona fide foreign exchange program should contact the district’s central office. All district enrollment is completed at the central office. A student who is transferring from non-public schools or schools outside the district will be placed at his/her current grade level pending evaluation and possible observation of the student after such assessment and consultation with the parents, the principal will determine the grade placement of the child.
Nonresidents may attend school on a tuition basis provided space is available. Nonresident students from other school districts within the state, (districts in the Hartford, New Haven, Bridgeport and New London regions) who apply pursuant to Board of Education regulations, may enroll in particular programs or schools within the district on a space available basis, without payment of tuition, as part of the inter-district public school attendance program called Open Choice. The Regional Educational Service Centers will determine which school districts are close enough to make transportation feasible. The parent or person having control of a child seventeen years of age may consent to such child’s withdrawal from school. The parent or person having control of a child seventeen years of age may exercise the option by personally appearing at the school district office to sign a withdrawal form. This form will include an attestation from the school’s guidance counselor or a school administrator that the district has provided the parent or person with information on the educational options available in the school system and in the community. A student who has attained the age of seventeen and who has voluntary terminated enrollment in the district’s schools and subsequently seeks admission may be denied readmission for up to ninety school days from the date of such termination unless such student seeks readmission to the district not later than ten school days after such termination in which school accommodation will be provided not later than three school days after such student seeks readmission. A student, nineteen years of age or older may be placed in an alternative school program or other suitable educational program if he/she cannot acquire a sufficient number of credits for graduation by age twenty-one. Students who are classified as homeless under federal law and do not have a fixed residence will be admitted pursuant to federal law.
Transportation will be provided by the district to a student who previously transferred to another school in the district under the previous NCLB option for schools identified for school improvement.
Parents of students attending Avon Public Schools have the option to enroll their child(ren) in a magnet school with which the district is a nonparticipating district, if the magnet school has unused student capacity. The district will pay any tuition charge. (Does not include tuition for a preschool magnet program.)
The Avon Public Schools maintain careful controls on the way in which students are exposed to materials and announcements, other than those directly related to school sponsored programs and activities. Caution is exercised to prevent exploitation of the system and its students. District-prescribed standards shall be met.
AMERICAN WITH DISABILITIES ACT AND SECTION 504 OF THE REHABILITATION ACT OF 1973
Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 ensures support for individuals with disabilities. Individuals with disabilities are provided a free and appropriate education (FAPE), and are accommodated and employed without discrimination related to their disabilities.
Section 504 prohibits discrimination against persons with disabilities (both students and staff members) by school districts receiving federal assistance of any kind for any program or activity. Districts may not discriminate against any person with a disability, regardless of whether the program or activity in which that person is involved receives federal funding directly.
All individuals who are disabled or “handicapped” are protected under Section 504. However, individuals who have been determined to be “handicapped” under Section 504 may not be considered disabled under IDEA. IDEA, which can be viewed as a subcategory of Section 504, provides for special programming or placement, while Section 504 protects the rights of individuals with handicaps. Under IDEA, students are qualified for services under 13 IDEA disabling conditions; specially designed individual education programs are planned for each student by Individualized Education Program (IEP) teams. Under Section 504, students with “handicaps” are entitled to special accommodations to ensure that they can participate in and benefit from public education and programs, and a 504 accommodation plan is designed for each student according to individual needs.
Section 504 is not an aspect of special education, but is, rather, a responsibility of the comprehensive general public education system. Unlike an eligibility system based on clinic categories of disabilities, Section 504 works on a more functional premise. Under 504 [29 U.S.C. & § 706(8)] a person is considered to have a disability if that person: 1. Has a physical or mental impairment which substantially limits one or more of such person’s major life activities. 2. Has a record of such an impairment, or 3. Is regarded as having such an impairment
While Section 504 provides a means for preventing discrimination against students with disabilities, this does not mean that 504 plans must focus on the disabling condition or on addressing the disability directly. Rather, 504 plans offer a means for focusing on students’ strengths, for capitalizing on what students bring to the instruction process - not on what they lack.
Should you have any questions regarding Section 504, please call either your child’s school principal or the Civil Rights Coordinator, Kelly Grant for the Avon Public Schools at 860-404-4710.
ANIMALS AND PETS
According to Board policy, animals are not allowed in school.
Legislation requires all school buildings to be reevaluated to determine if asbestos is present and if it poses a significant health hazard to the building’s occupants. The district has on file plans showing the location of asbestos in each building and measures undertaken to comply with regulations to maintain a safe school environment. Request to review these plans may be made in the school office.
BOARD OF EDUCATION
Board members are unpaid elected public officials with the responsibility for governance of the school district. The members of the Avon Public Schools Board of Education are:
Chairperson: Houston Putnam Lowry
Vice-Chairperson: Debra Chute
Secretary: Katharine Zirolli
Members: Jacqueline Blea, Ken Birk, Jason Indomenico, Peggy Roell, Jay Spivak, Laura Young
In order to perform its duties in an open and public manner and in accordance with state law, the Avon Board of Education holds regular business meetings on the third Tuesday of each month at 7:00 PM in the Avon High School community room. Parents, students and other community members are encouraged to attend.
Meetings of the Board follow a planned and posted agenda. At a certain time in the agenda the Board chairperson will recognize individuals who want to make a statement, not more than 5 minutes in length, or to express a viewpoint. In addition, if they give advance notice to the Superintendent, individuals with relevant issues for discussion may have such issues placed on a future Board agenda for a more thorough discussion of the topic.
The Board’s main purpose is policy setting designed to improve student learning. Board members are interested in the public’s opinion on district issues, which can assist them in formulating policy which reflects community values and expectations.
Thompson Brook School encourages parents and family members to volunteer as a chaperone for field trips and other special events throughout the year. All adult chaperones will be asked to be fingerprinted and agree to a background screening to ensure the safety of all our students. Many local police departments provide fingerprinting and background check services. There is generally a fee which will be paid directly to the department conducting the services. Found below are the phone numbers of local police departments that offer finger printing services for your convenience:
Avon = (860) 677-9746
West Hartford = (860) 523-5203
Canton* = (860) 693-0221
Farmington* = (860) 675-2400
Simsbury * (860) 658-3100
*Must be a resident of the town or work in the town to utilize their services.
All school employees are obligated by law (C.G.S. 17a-101) to report suspected child abuse, neglect, or if a child is placed in imminent danger of serious harm to the Connecticut State Department of Children and Families Services. Specific procedures governing the reporting of abuse and neglect are in effect, and staff receive yearly training in their use.
Reporting of child abuse and neglect is a responsibility which is taken seriously. If there is any doubt about reporting suspected abuse or neglect a report will be made. The school will work with the parents and appropriate social agencies in all cases.
Child abuse is defined as any physical injury inflicted by other than accidental means or injuries which are not in keeping with the explanation given for their cause. Improper treatment such as malnutrition, sexual molestation, deprivation of necessities, emotional abuse, cruel punishment or neglect are also considered child abuse.
Every effort will be made to place students with teachers where a positive student-teacher relationship will be established. Parents will have an opportunity to provide information relative to placement. The final decision for placement rests with the principal or his/her designee. Each spring TBS staff spend a great deal of time and put a lot of effort into the placement of children in classes for the next school year. Among other considerations, heterogeneously grouped classes are created that have a balance of boys and girls, a representation from all the year’s previous classes, and for grade five, a balance of students from PGS and RBS. All of this is done while also trying to anticipate any personnel changes which may be made for the next school year. Students who are new to TBS will be placed in classrooms based on the information provided to the school through the child’s official records. New students will also be screened by a certified member of the school’s staff. This information may also be used to place the child in an appropriate classroom. After all these factors are taken into account, very little flexibility remains to consider additional possibilities. Therefore, it is impossible to honor individual requests for specific teachers. A request for a specific teacher will not be considered.
District resources have been invested in computer technology to broaden instruction and to prepare students for an increasingly computerized society. Use of these resources is restricted to students working under a teacher’s supervision and for approved purposes only. Students and parents will be asked to sign a user agreement regarding appropriate use of these resources. Violations of this agreement may result in withdrawal of privileges and other disciplinary action.
Students and parents should be aware that e-mail communications, using district computers, are not private and may be monitored by staff. Students may not access social media sites using district equipment, while on district property, or at a district sponsored activity unless the posting is approved by a teacher. The district will not be liable for information posted by students on social media websites, such as Facebook, MySpace, YouTube, etc., when the student is not engaged in district activities and not using district equipment.
The district reserves the right to monitor, inspect, copy, review and store at any time and without prior notice any and all usage of the computer network and Internet access and any and all information transmitted or received in connection with such usage. All such information files shall be and remain the property of the Avon Public Schools and no user shall have any expectation of privacy regarding such material.
Federal law requires the district to place filtering devices on school computers to block entry to visual depictions that are obscene, pornographic, harmful or inappropriate for students as defined in the Children’s Internet Protection Act and as determined by the Superintendent or his/her designee.
DEFIBRILLATORS IN SCHOOLS (AED’s)
Each school will have (1) one automatic external defibrillator (AED) and (2) school personnel trained in AED operation and cardio pulmonary resuscitation (CPR). The AED and trained personnel will be available during the school’s normal operational hours, at school-sponsored athletic events and practices on school grounds and at school-sponsored events not taking place during normal school operational hours. The school also has an emergency action response plan addressing the use of trained school personnel to respond to individuals experiencing sudden cardiac arrest or similar life threatening emergencies.
DISTRIBUTION OF MATERIALS
Printed materials may be distributed to parents by students as a means of communications. All requests from groups or individuals to have students distribute materials to the community, with the exception of school-connected organizations, will be referred to the office of the superintendent to determine whether the request complies with school policy.
- The principal or his/her designee may approve such distribution providing:
- The material is related to the school, community, local recreational or civic activity.
- The material does not relate to any religious belief or activity, or promote private gain.
- The material does not promote any outside governmental political party, candidate or position.
- Does not promote profit making organizations.
- Does not advocate a position regarding a referendum question.
Materials that have a religious content may be made available to students during non-instructional time. The District has the right to impose neutral time, place and manner restrictions on the dissemination of religious materials to ensure that students are aware that the materials are not endorsed or sponsored by the District.
Publications prepared by or for the school may be posted or distributed, with prior approval by the principal, sponsor or teacher. Such items include school posters, brochures, school newspapers and yearbook.
EXEMPTION FROM INSTRUCTION
A student will be exempted from instruction on Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS), Bilingual Education, or Family Life and Sex Education upon receipt of a written request for such exemption from his/her parent or guardian. In addition, a student will be excused from participating in, or observing animal dissections as part of classroom instruction upon a written request from the student’s parent or guardian. The student must complete an alternate assignment determined by the school.
GREEN CLEANING PROGRAMS
A green cleaning program to clean and maintain the school will be implemented by July 1, 2011. The program provides for the procurement and proper use of environmentally preferable cleaning products in the school. The cleaning products used meet standards approved by the Department of Administrative Services and minimize potential harmful effects on human health and the environment.
Parents/Guardians may request a written copy of the District’s policy pertaining to the green cleaning program and a written statement which includes the names and types of environmentally preferable cleaning products used in the school and where in the building they are applied; the schedule for applying the products; and the names of the school administrator or designee whom the parent/guardian or student may contact for more information.
“No parent, guardian, teacher, or staff member may bring into the school facility any consumer product which is intended to clean, deodorize, sanitize or disinfect” (a required statement by law).
GUIDANCE AND COUNSELING
Social services and counseling are rendered by professionally qualified members of the school staff. The responsibilities of the counselors include helping the student function more successfully within the school environment. The district’s comprehensive counseling program strives to assist students in acquiring critical skills in the academic, career, and personal/social aspects of development.
School counselors will use a variety of methods to assist students in overcoming barriers to learning, to make strong connections with the educational opportunities in the school and to ensure that every child learns in a safe, healthy and supportive setting.
The school health office is designed to provide care to students who become ill or are injured while in school. The health program offered in the Avon Public Schools will be administered by a registered nurse in each school building (Board Policy #6120). There is a registered nurse in the building throughout the school day. Occasionally, a substitute nurse may be working in the health room. In addition to your child’s pediatrician/family practitioner, there is a school medical advisor, Dr. Rosenberg, who is available to the nurse for consultation. If your child is under a physician’s care for a health problem or if you notice a change which may affect his/her school day, please inform the school nurse or teacher as appropriate. If your child has a food allergy or other health issue, contact the school nurse to develop a health care plan.
Parents are notified of any deviation from the normal pattern of health and suggestions are given for follow-up. It is likewise important that parents notify the school nurse in case of a student’s illness. If a student is to be excused or limited for an extended period from participation in school activities, he/she is required to bring a statement signed by a physician. The school nurse is available to parents and students for conferences regarding health issues.
Administration of Medication
Whenever possible, try to give your child his/her medication at home. Parents of students requiring medication during school should contact the school nurse. Special forms are required to permit the administration of medicine in school. They are available from the school nurse. All medication must be in original container with proper labels. All medication must be brought to the school by the parent/guardian and delivered only to the school nurse. Students are not allowed to carry or take medication in school unsupervised.
In cases in which a student is able to self-administer medication, the parents or guardians must submit a signed statement that the medication must be taken during the school day and the student is capable of administering the medication. The statement must be accompanied by a physician’s, dentist’s, or advanced practice registered nurse’s statement indicating the necessity and naming the medication, the strength, and the prescribed dosage. It must specify the schedule on which it is to be taken and the details of administration. Such statements must be renewed at the beginning of each school year.
A student with asthma or an allergic condition may carry an inhaler or an epipen or similar device in school at all times if he/she is under the care of a physician, physician assistant or advanced practical nurse and such practitioner certifies in writing that the child needs to keep an asthmatic inhaler or epipen at all times to ensure prompt treatment of the child’s asthma or allergic condition and to protect the child against serious harm or death. A written authorization of the parent/guardian is required.
Students with any medical condition which within the school setting may expose others to disease or contagious and infectious conditions may be excluded from school and referred for medical diagnosis and treatment. Additional information concerning this may be obtained from the school nurse.
Before a child may return to school after an absence due to such condition, parents and students may be required to submit medical evidence that their child has recovered sufficiently to prevent exposing others.
Emergency Information Card
Emergency cards are kept on file in the health room for every student and are updated annually. Emergency telephone numbers and special health information are listed on the front side of the card. Please notify the school if there is any change in the emergency information during the school year. An “Authorization for Administration of Standing Order Medication” is on the reverse side of the emergency card. Parent/legal guardian authorization is necessary for your child to receive “standing order medication” in school, such as Tylenol or Benadryl for allergic symptoms. The medicines are authorized by the school medical doctor to be given as considered necessary by the school nurse. A completed and signed emergency card is important in the event that the school should need to contact you for dismissal or referral of your child for medical care. In addition, your written permission is necessary for your child to receive standing order medication. Therefore, please complete both sides of the emergency card and return it to the school that your child will be attending.
Registered nurses and other trained staff will provide first aid treatment to students in emergency situations.
School nurses maintain a cumulative health file for each student which includes the results of physical exams and other health information. These records are accessible to certified staff working with the child if permission is granted by the nurse or building administrator. Parents may request to inspect the health records of their child. Copies may be provided if requested. Original copies of the record are sent where a student transfers to another school in the state. If moving out-of-state, a copy will be forwarded. Health records are maintained for at least six years after the student graduates. The District will comply with the requirements of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPPA) to maintain the privacy of protected health information.
Home instruction is available to students who are unable to attend school for medical and/or mental health reasons for a period of two weeks or longer as diagnosed by a physician, psychiatrist or the Planning and Placement Team. Home instruction may also be provided for those students who have been excluded from regular school attendance for disciplinary reasons.
Homeless students, as defined by federal and state legislation, will have all programs, services, and transportation that other students enjoy and may continue to attend the school of origin. Parents who find themselves homeless should contact the school principal for guidance on how to proceed.
Before being permitted to attend the Avon Public Schools, the Avon Board of Education requires proof of the state mandated immunizations. The form must be signed by the student’s health care provider and submitted to the school nurse prior to starting school. If the student should not be immunized due to medical or religious reasons, a statement from a physician or the parent as appropriate must be provided. The required immunizations are listed on the State of Connecticut Health Assessment Record form which will be provided to students upon registering.
For further information regarding immunizations contact the school nurse.
All students must present evidence of a physical examination upon enrollment to the district. The physical examination must be documented on a “State of Connecticut Department of Education Health Assessment Record” form (C.G.S. 10-204a). Health assessment shall also be required in grade 5 before entering grade 6, and in grade 9. All students in grades K-6 and grade 9 will undergo vision screening by the school nurse or school health aide. Hearing screening will be conducted for all students in grades K- 3, grade 5 and grade 8. Postural screening will be conducted for all students in grades 5 through 9.
School insurance is made available to families through a specific program. Brochures are distributed to all students at the beginning of each academic year. While the program is not mandatory, it is suggested that parents take advantage of the opportunity to provide adequate protection for their children while in school. Any such arrangements is contractual between the parent and insurance carriers and the Avon Public School assumes no liability from disputes arising from such contract.
LIMITED ENGLISH PROFICIENT (LEP) STUDENTS / ESOL
Parents of Limited English Proficient (LEP) Students participating in a language instructional program will be notified within 30 days of their child’s placement in the program. The notification will include an explanation of why, a description of the program, and the parent’s rights to remove their child from the LEP program. In addition, the notification will explain how the program will help the child to develop academically, learn English and achieve the standards necessary for promotion.
Students not meeting the English mastery standard or demonstrating limited progress will be provided with additional language support services which may include, but are not limited to, English as a Second Language program, sheltered English programs, English Immersion programs, summer school, after- school assistance, homework assistance, and tutoring. Students after 30 months in a bilingual program will not be offered additional bilingual education.
It is recognized that some students may benefit from attendance at a magnet school not limited by school district boundaries. District students may enroll directly into a magnet school, with which the District does not have a participation agreement, on a space available basis. The District will be responsible for any tuition for such enrollment, but not for transportation, unless the magnet school is within the boundaries of the school district. Tuition will not be paid by the district for student placed by their parents/guardians in a pre-school (PK) magnet program. The State Department of Education for the 2013-2014 school year is responsible for preschool tuition costs for all RESC magnets.
Only certified pesticide applicators shall be used in schools for any non-emergency pesticide use in school buildings or on school grounds. Pesticide applications are limited to non-school hours and when activities are not taking place. Areas to receive pesticide application will be posted and a written record of all pesticide applications will be maintained for five years. Parents/guardians and staff who want to receive advance notice of all pesticide use will be listed on a registry and such notice will be provided as required by law. Parents/guardians who want to be notified prior to pesticide applications inside their child(ren)’s school assignment area may contact the Director of Facilities for Avon Public Schools.
Student safety on campus and at school related events is a high priority of the district. Although the district has implemented safety procedures, the cooperation of students is essential to ensure school safety. A student should:
Connecticut schools offer a range of educational program to meet the diverse needs and career aspirations of its students in a variety of settings, including comprehensive local schools, regional vocational-technical schools, vocational agriculture centers, charter schools and magnet schools. These programs serve to prepare student for college, the workplace and active citizenship.
The Open Choice program allows urban students to attend public schools in nearby suburban towns. Suburban and rural students are allowed to attend public schools in a nearby urban center. Enrollments are offered on a space-available basis in grades K-12. The Program includes Hartford, Bridgeport and New Haven and their surrounding districts.
SCHOOL DISTRICT RECORDS
Interested persons may inspect “public district records” which are maintained at the office of the Superintendent of Schools, during normal hours of business. Copies of records, permitted by law to be disclosed, may also be attained.
The District utilizes the Response to Intervention (RTI) process which combines systematic assessment, decision-making and a multi-tiered delivery model to improve educational and behavioral outcomes for all students. Academic and behavioral support and targeted interventions will be provided for students who are not making academic progress at expected levels in the general curriculum.
For students in need of Special Education programs, a planning and placement team (PPT) is designed to provide communication and decision-making at the school level concerning the effective use of available resources. The team is also responsible for follow-up and periodic review of all students presently in Special Education and special services programs.
Any child identified as possibly needing special education and/or related services must be referred to a special education Planning & Placement Team for evaluation (PPT). The PPT will determine whether special education services are required. Parents must give their consent before any evaluation can be done or any services can begin. An Individualized Education Plan, based upon the diagnostic findings of the evaluation study will be developed by the PPT, with parental involvement. Parents will be informed regarding the use of scientific, research-based interventions.
A student’s school records are confidential and are protected by federal and state law from unauthorized inspection or use. A cumulative record is maintained for each student from the time the student enters the district until the student withdraws or graduates. This record moves with the student from school to school.
By law, both parents, whether married, separated, or divorced, have access to the records of a student who is under 18 or a dependent for tax purposes. A parent whose rights have been legally terminated will be denied access to the records if the school is given a copy of the court order terminating these rights.
The principal is custodian of all records for currently enrolled students at the assigned school. The superintendent is the custodian of all records for students who have withdrawn or graduated. Records may be reviewed during regular school hours upon completion of the written request form. The record’s custodian or designee will respond to reasonable requests for explanation and interpretation of the records.
Parents of a minor or of a student who is a dependent for tax purposes, the student (if 18 or older), and school officials with legitimate educational interests are the only persons who have general access to a student’s records. “School officials with legitimate educational interests” include any employee such as an administrator, teacher, support staff, Board of Education member, attorney, agents, or facilities with which the district contracts for the placement of students with disabilities, as well as their attorneys and consultants, who are:
1. Working with the student;
2. Considering disciplinary or academic actions, the student’s case, an Individual Education Plan (IEP) for a student with disabilities under IDEA or an individually designed program for a student with disabilities under Section 504;
3. Compiling statistical data; or
4. Investigating or evaluating programs.
Certain other officials from various governmental agencies may have limited access to the records. Parental consent is required to release the records to anyone else. When the student reaches 18 years of age, only the student has the right to consent to release of records.
The parent’s or student's right of access to, and copies of, student records does not extend to all records. Materials that are not considered educational records, such as teachers’ personal notes on a student that are shared only with a substitute teacher and records pertaining to former students after they are no longer students in the district, do not have to be made available to the parents or student.
A student over 18 and parents of minor students may inspect the student’s records and request a correction if the records are inaccurate, misleading, or otherwise in violation of the student’s privacy or other rights. If the district refuses the request to amend the records, the requestor has the right to a hearing. If the records are not amended as a result of the hearing, the requestor has 30 school days to exercise the right to place a statement commenting on the information in the student’s record. Although improperly recorded grades may be challenged, parents and the student are not allowed to contest a student’s grade in a course through this process. Parents or the student have the right to file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education if they believe the district is not in compliance with the law regarding student records. The district’s policy regarding student records is available from the principal’s or superintendent’s office.
Copies of student records are available at a cost per page, as determined by the district office, payable in advance. Parents may be denied copies of a student’s records (1) after the student reaches age 18 and is no longer a dependent for tax purposes; (2) when the student is attending an institution of postsecondary education; (3) if the parent fails to follow proper procedures and pay the copying charge; or (4) when the district is given a copy of a court order terminating the parental rights. If the student qualifies for free or reduced-price meals and the parents are unable to view the records during regular school hours, upon written request of the parent, one copy of the record will be provided at no charge.
Certain information about district students is considered directory information and will be released to anyone who follows procedures for requesting it, unless the parent objects to the release of any or all directory information about the child. This objection must be made in writing to the principal within ten school days after the issuance of this handbook. Directory information includes a student’s name, address, telephone number, date and place of birth, major field of study, grade levels, photograph, email address, participation in officially recognized activities and sports, weight and height of members of athletic teams, dates of attendance, awards received in school, and most recent previous school attended.
Military recruiters or institutions of higher learning shall have access to secondary school students names, addresses and telephone listings, unless a parent/guardian or secondary student aged 18 or over requests in writing that such information not be released.
The District will release to the Parent Teacher Organization the names, addresses, telephone number and grade levels of students (unless the District is informed by September 15 of the school year that designation of such directory information has been refused as to a particular student) provided such information is to be used by the PTO for its own school activities or school business.
The district, when a student moves to a new school system or charter school, will send the student’s records to the new district or charter school within ten business days of receiving written notice of the move from the new district. Unless the parents/guardians of the student authorize the record transfer in writing, the sending district is required to send a notice when the records are sent to the new district.
Parents and eligible students have the right to file a complaint with the U.S. Department of education concerning alleged failures by the District to comply with the Requirements of FERPA. Complaints may be addressed to: Family Policy Compliance Office, U.S. Department of Education, 5400 Maryland Avenue, S.W., Washington, DC 20202-4605.
TEACHER AND PARAPROFESSIONAL QUALIFICATIONS
Parents have the right to request information about the professional qualifications of their child’s teacher(s). The response will indicate whether the teacher is certified for the subject matter and grade taught; the teacher’s undergraduate major and any graduate degrees or certifications a teacher may have. Parents will also be advised, if requested as to whether the child is provided service by paraprofessionals and their qualifications.
All students in grades 3 through 8 inclusive and grade 10 or 11 shall annually take a mastery examination in reading, language arts and mathematics. Students in grades 5, 8 and 10 or 11 shall annually take a statewide mastery examination in science. Special education students participate in mastery testing programs except in the rare case when participation in an alternate assessment is detrimental to the student’s IEP.
Teachers may not teach privately (tutor) students of the school in which he/she teaches. The school building may not be used for private tutoring purposes. This does not apply to teacher of homebound children employed by the Board of Education.
Parents are welcome to visit TBS. All visitors must first report to the office to sign in and receive a visitor’s badge. Visits to individual classrooms during instructional time shall be permitted only with the principal’s approval in advance, and such visits shall not be permitted if their duration or frequency interferes with the delivery of instruction or disrupts the normal school environment.
Unauthorized persons shall not be permitted in school buildings or on school grounds. School principals are authorized to take appropriate action to prevent such persons from entering the building or from loitering on the grounds. Such persons will be prosecuted to the full extent of the law.
All visitors are expected to demonstrate the highest standards of courtesy and conduct. Disruptive behavior will not be permitted. Friends and family members, other than parents, are not permitted to “shadow” students during the school day.
School web pages must contain material that reflects on educational purposes. Teachers are not required to maintain websites or post assignments or homework on their site. Many teachers do utilize websites as a means of communication and as a method of providing both students and parents with important information. Parents should inquire with their child’s teacher about the use of their website. School web pages are not to be used for personal, commercial or political purposes; and are considered a publication of the Board of Education.
Student wellness, including good nutrition and physical activity, is promoted through the District’s educational program, school activities, and meal programs. Federal and state standards will be met pertaining to all foods and beverages available for sale to students. A sequential program of physical education is provided, in addition to time in the elementary school day for supervised recess.
Students withdrawing from school must notify the office at least one week in advance of their last day. At that time, they will be given forms for their parents to complete. Included will be a formal written statement of withdrawal and release of records form. On their last day of attendance, students will be given a form that must be signed by each of their teachers. This form will indicate their grade at the time of withdrawal and that all materials have been returned. Records cannot be forwarded until all materials have been returned.