Board Policies Vol. 2: 4000s-5000s

4000 Instructional Goals

The development and maintenance of optimal educational programs are the primary functions of the Board of Education. The Board’s instructional goals for district students include the following:

1. to provide each child with fundamental academic skills and knowledge required for his/her maximum educational advancement;
2. to promote the ability to think rationally, critically and logically; to find information and use knowledge constructively; to understand and use scientific methods; and to attack problems intelligently, giving due respect to honest differences of opinion;
3. to nurture and develop basic attitudes, such as good work habits, self-discipline, respect for authority, and sense of responsibility, cooperation, good sportsmanship, and self-confidence;
4. to develop in the students a sense of self-worth, the importance of personal character, and a personal system of values that will enable them, with the necessary guidance, to recognize and use their own capabilities;
5. to develop each student’s social skills, human relations skills, and attitudes so as to ensure his/her adequate participation in school-related group activities of a formal or informal nature, as well as to develop respect and understanding for others as human beings, regardless of individual differences;
6. to provide special services which promote the physical, mental, and emotional well-being of every child. Such services should help develop in students skills and interests which will foster the intelligent use of leisure time and an understanding of the importance of the practice of good health habits;
7. to stimulate each student’s capacity for creative thought and effort via exposure to the arts, sciences, and humanities, through direct instruction in these areas as well as involvement in projects or performances which require creative self-expression;
8. to develop each student’s understanding and appreciation of the principles and practices of democratic government and to develop each student’s skill in democratic decision-making by making operative in each elementary and secondary school models of democratic goal-setting, organization, and action toward student-established goals and student-initiated and -managed projects, so as to prepare each student to function effectively and accept responsibility in his/her role as citizen and his/her future role as voter;
9. to provide each student with a body of general knowledge that will enable him/her to function satisfactorily and successfully in the several subject disciplines represented in secondary curricula and post-high school studies and to develop his/her awareness, through interdisciplinary teaching and other means, of the interrelationships among the various disciplines;
10. to prepare each student to assume increased responsibility for self-motivation and self-direction, whether for use in college studies, remunerative employment, or family and community living, by providing a gradual transition away from a teacher-directed, controlled, and regulated school environment;
11. to prepare each student for his/her life after high school by assisting students to choose rationally among alternatives for high school and post-high school areas of study by providing exploratory and advanced study experiences among varied curricula, by offering individual academic guidance, or individual vocational guidance, as well as studies which emphasize desirable work habits and attitudes, and which build awareness of potential choices among the many career paths and job classifications;
12. to develop sensitivity and awareness on the part of each student for the quality of his/her interaction with the environment and for the dependence of humans on an environment which must be preserved and restored; and to develop in students the skills and willingness to engage in personal acts of environmental preservation and restoration;
13. to nurture a spirit of inquiry which capitalizes on students’ innate curiosity, and reveals to them the excitement found in the search for knowledge;
14. to provide each student with the greatest possible opportunity to use his/her abilities and interests in order to find satisfaction and a sense of purpose in life;
15. to develop literacy and understanding in economic matters, and encourage responsible consumer judgment;
16. to provide a well-balanced extracurricular program designed to promote the intellectual, physical and social growth of students;
17. to promote intelligent regard for and use of the nation’s resources;
18. to develop understanding of social structures and social processes;
19. to infuse curriculum, instructional methods, content, projects and lessons with 21st century education technologies throughout daily delivery of classroom instruction;
20. effectively use technology to access, communicate, apply knowledge and to foster creativity;
21. acquire and use technology and digital literacy skills that will prepare them for the 21st century; and
22. to instill the skills necessary for internet safety, and digital citizenship to protect their online privacy and maintain a positive digital footprint.

Adopted July 1, 1997
Revised, Adopted December 8, 2015

4003 Individualization of Instruction

Individualization of instruction in the school district is based upon the belief that instruction must take into account individual differences in order to maximize learning. We know that our students differ according to learning rate and style, interests, abilities, expectations, and needs. Each of these factors is to be considered in organizing, planning and defining goals for learning.

Instruction as defined herein is meant to include establishing goals for learning, planning for learning, developing a nurturing, challenging environment, and using assessment and feedback strategies to enhance and modify instructional methodology, goals, and the learning environment.

Instruction in the school district is to be based upon the belief that learning is maximized as attention is given to differences among individuals. The following conditions will prevail:

1. Appropriate school personnel will determine each student’s abilities and needs, taking into account such factors as:
a. prior knowledge, skills;
b. learning style;
c. interests;
d. personality variables;
e. personal expectations; and
f. unique needs.
2. Curriculum presentation in the classroom shall be organized with the following objectives in mind, so that:
a. each student achieves continuous increase in knowledge, skills, and concepts;
b. a variety of materials and methods are employed to ensure that each student’s most effective learning style is used maximally;
c. individual student interest is consistently used to maximize learning of skills to acquire other tools for learning;
d. maximum opportunity for each student to become engaged in the learning process is provided;
e. the unique motivations of students are given attention;
f. the teacher functions as one who establishes an environment that facilitates student growth toward well-defined objectives;
g. students are allowed to work toward differing objectives;
h. self-assessment, as well as teacher-made and standardized measures, is encouraged and utilized;
i. regular re-examination of goals and procedures occurs;
j. individual students have opportunities to define their own learning objectives; and
k. differing rates of learning and differing degrees of prior knowledge are anticipated and accommodated.

3. Achievement is determined by individual performance. Individual goals which are established, stem from broader program objectives, which in turn, are related to the broad instructional goals of the district. Assessment of a student’s prior knowledge, skills and current needs aid the teacher and the student as they jointly plan objectives for learning.
4. There is an expectation that the learning environment will contain a variety of settings within and outside of the classroom and school. The foundation for creating this environment is a continuous and caring determination that each student is to become an eager and successful learner. This learning environment is to be based upon recognized differences, proven learning theory and successful models of student achievement.

Adopted March 10, 1998
Revised, Adopted April 12, 2016

4010 Equivalence in Instructional Staff and Materials

In accordance with federal regulations, the Board of Education will ensure equivalence among district schools in teachers, administrators, and auxiliary personnel; and in the provision of curricular materials and instructional supplies. The Superintendent of Schools shall follow the State Education Department guidelines in determining such equivalence on an annual basis, and report to the Board on the status of district schools with regard to equivalence.

Adopted March 23, 1999
Revised, Adopted April 12, 2016

4110 School Year and Calendar

The Superintendent of Schools will develop and present to the Board of Education school year schedules that fulfill state requirements and comply with the collective bargaining agreement(s) currently in effect within the district.

The school calendar for the ensuing year will be developed by the Superintendent of Schools and presented to the Board of Education for approval in the spring of each year. The number of days scheduled for students will meet or exceed the requirements of state law.

Adopted May 27, 1997
Revised, Adopted February 2, 2016

4311 Citizenship Education

The Board of Education believes that students must gain an understanding of and appreciation for our democratic society, the roles and responsibilities of the individual citizen, and the relationship between citizens of the United States and those of other societies and cultures. To this end, and in compliance with statutory and regulatory mandates, the district will offer instruction and related activities in citizenship education. Such instruction and activities will be made available to all students in the district on a regular basis and in keeping with appropriate grade level instruction as it is practiced throughout the district.

Adopted November 20, 2012
Adopted June 14, 2016

4311.1 Display of the Flag

The Board of Education believes that the flag of the United States is a symbol of the values of our nation, the ideals embedded in our Constitution and the spirit that should animate our district.

The district shall purchase a United States flag, flag staff and the necessary appliances for its display upon or near every school building. A United States flag shall be displayed in front of every school building in the district when school is in session and at such other times as the Superintendent of Schools shall direct. There shall be a flag on display in every assembly room of every school.

The flag shall be flown at full- or half-staff pursuant to law as designated by President of the United States or the Governor during special periods of mourning. With the Superintendent’s approval, the flag may also be flown at half-staff to commemorate the death of an important local official, public servant, or contributor to the school community.

Consistent with national and state law and regulations and this policy, the Superintendent of Schools shall develop rules and regulations for the proper custody, care and display of the flag.

Adopted March 29, 2005
Reviewed June 5, 2007
Reviewed, Adopted November 7, 2012
Reviewed, Adopted June 14, 2016

4311.1-R Display of the Flag Regulation

Flags Displayed Out-of-Doors and on Movable Hoists Indoors

A United States flag shall be displayed in front of every school building in the district when school is in session, every election day and at such other times as the Superintendent of Schools shall direct. Unless otherwise stated, the flags shall be flown at full-staff.

Flags shall be flown at half-staff on Pearl Harbor Day (December 7), September 11 Remembrance Day, on days commemorating the death of a personage of great importance, and during periods of special mourning designated by the President of the United States or the Governor, and at the direction of the Superintendent of Schools, on days commemorating the death of an important local official, public servant, or contributor to the school community.

The flag will not be displayed on days when the weather is inclement.

Hoisting of the Flag

The flag shall be hoisted briskly and lowered ceremoniously.

In half staffing the flag, it first should be hoisted to the peak for an instant and then lowered to the half-staff position. The flag shall be again raised to the peak before it is lowered for the day. The flag shall be put at half-mast in the morning only.

Indoor Flags and Those Not on Movable Hoists

There shall be a United States flag in each assembly room of every school in the district.

It is the duty of the teacher or other person in charge of each assembly room to ensure that the flag in the room is displayed correctly. A flag hanging from a staff placed on the floor is to be to the audience’s right. A flag placed on the platform (or stage) is to the right of the speaker and to the audience’s left.

Note: Regulation added

Cross-ref: 4311, Citizenship Education
4311.1, Display of the Flag

Reviewed March 8, 2005
Revised, Reviewed October 23, 2012
Revised, Reviewed June 14, 2016
Revised, Reviewed November 13, 2018

4316 Physical Education

The Board of Education shall provide every student with an opportunity for wholesome and enriched educational experiences. The Board believes that the following basic aims and objectives of the physical education program shall contribute to this goal:

1. to aid the development of a student’s mind by encouraging the development of a healthy body;

2. to encourage student participation in appropriate physical activity while in school and to teach the skills of those activities so that they will carry over to activities throughout their lifetime;

3. to increase appreciation of physical fitness and its importance in regard to good health;

4. to impress upon students the importance of integrating one’s mind, body, and attitude in preparing to face the challenges life presents; and

5. to foster self-respect, self-discipline, and the value of cooperation and teamwork.

With these objectives in mind, the district physical education staff will work together with administrators to develop a physical education program that develops each student’s flexibility, agility, coordination, strength and endurance incorporating a progression of skills and activities from simple to more complex. This program must be flexible enough to accommodate each student’s own pattern of growth and development and include activities that assure both individual and group development throughout the student’s school years. Provisions shall be made for students who require a special or adaptive physical education program.

Students who are temporarily or permanently unable to participate in the regular physical education program will be provided with adapted and/or alternative activities. Temporary or shortterm adaptations shall be made by the physical education teacher/supervisor in consultation with appropriate medical personnel including licensed physical or occupational therapists. Permanent or long-term program adaptations shall be based upon recommendations from the family physician.

Students with disabilities, as classified by the Committee on Special Education (CSE), who are unable to safely or successfully participate in the activities of the regular physical education program will be provided with an adaptive and or alternative physical education plan. The written individualized education program (IEP) for each such student shall include a prescriptive physical education program. The physical education teacher shall be involved in the development of the IEP.

School personnel shall have the responsibility of determining the activities appropriate for each student. In no case should the activity exceed the ability level of the student.

Ref: Education Law §§803; 3204(5)
8 NYCRR §135.4
*8 NYCRR §100.5 (a) (3)
District Physical Education Plan (filed with State Education Department, available at the District Office)

*Current Commissioner’s Regulations state:
“In order to qualify for graduation, each student in grades 9-12 shall be required to successfully complete the physical education program prescribed by the district during each year of attendance in the district high school.”

Note: Policy added

Adopted January 27, 1998
Adopted March 6, 2012
Revised and Adopted May 28, 2019

4320.2 Music Instrument Program

The primary objective of the instrumental music program is to provide all interested students an opportunity to develop their musical talents and interests through learning to play a band or orchestral instrument and participating in an instrumental performing group.

In achieving this objective, the district recognizes the importance of assisting students and their parents in the choice of instruments. The music department, through teacher/parent informational meetings, will help parents by providing information about the more common instruments including lease and purchase options when instrumental instruction begins.

Students shall not be excluded from participation in the instrumental music program because of an inability to pay for an instrument through a rental or lease program or because of transportation restrictions due to the size of an instrument.

Therefore, the district shall provide to interested students certain instruments that are essential for complete instrumentation in the band or and orchestra. The district shall maintain these instruments for student use, under various conditions, for a small maintenance fee. All school-owned instruments are subject to availability, and students are expected to be responsible for the care of any instrument provided to them by the school. Students may use school-owned instruments in accordance with the provisions of the accompanying regulation.

 

Making available school-owned instruments and providing parents with assistance in choosing instruments for their children should, in turn, help ensure that a balance of instrumentation is achieved. Through these and other efforts, the district hopes to provide students with the opportunity for a true and complete instrumental experience.

Adopted March 14, 2006
Revised, Adopted June 19, 2012
Reviewed, Adopted October 4, 2016

4320.2-R Music Instrument Program

School-Owned Instruments

Students may use school-owned instruments in accordance with the following provisions:

1. French Horn, Bassoon, Viola – These instruments, which can be carried on the school bus, are loaned on a yearly basis to students throughout their involvement in the instrumental music program.
2. Tuba, String Bass – These instruments cannot be transported on the school bus, nor can they be rented. Therefore, the district provides one instrument for home-use and one for in-school use only.
3. Cello, Baritone – These instruments are provided by the district free-of-charge, for in-school use only. Students are required to rent or purchase these instruments on their own for home-use.
4. Tenor Saxophone, Baritone Saxophone, Bass Clarinet, Piccolo – These instruments are used at different stages of the program to enhance and complete the instrumentation of the musical groups. Generally, students who play these instruments already own an instrument but are provided a second instrument by the district at no cost.

Reviewed March 14, 2006 Reviewed June 19, 2012
Revised, Reviewed October 4, 2016 Revised, Reviewed October 24, 2017

4321 Programs for Students with Disabilities

The Board of Education, in accordance with State Law and Regulations, shall provide all students with disabilities who reside in the district a free, appropriate public education in the least restrictive environment. The Board expects that the rights of parents, guardians, and students shall be fully explained. District personnel will seek solutions through accommodation and trust. The Board shall appoint a Committee on Special Education (CSE) to identify, evaluate and recommend placements of students with disabilities who are in need of special services or programs. The Board shall also appoint subcommittees, if necessary, to ensure the timely evaluation of and placement of students.

The Board also shall make available special education and related services to eligible students with disabilities parentally placed in a nonpublic school located within the district, regardless of whether they are residents of the district. However, this obligation does not extend to resident students with disabilities who are placed by their parents in a nonpublic school within district boundaries because of a disagreement between the parents and the school district over the provision of a free appropriate public education. Nonpublic school students with disabilities who are not district residents but who reside within New York State will be provided programs and services in accordance with their individualized education services program (IESP). Nonpublic school students with disabilities who reside out-of-state will be provided services in accordance with their services plan.

In providing a free appropriate public education to students with disabilities eligible under the IDEA and Article 89, the Board will afford the students and their parents the procedural safeguard rights they are entitled to under applicable law and regulations. The Board also will provide them with notice of such rights as required by law and regulation, using the form prescribed by the Commissioner of Education.

Eligible students with disabilities will be entitled to special education and related services until the end of the school year in which they turn 21 or until they receive a local high school or Regents diploma.

Prior to identification as a student with a disability, the student shall be exposed to pre-referral strategies that focus on remediating performance. Each student with a disability shall have equal opportunity to participate in the full range of programs and services of this school district, including extracurricular programs and activities, which are available to all other students enrolled in the district’s public schools.

Pursuant to the Regulations of the Commissioner of Education, the Board directs the Superintendent to develop and maintain a plan which incorporates information concerning the provision of services for students with disabilities and to establish administrative practices and procedures which shall include:

1. School-wide approaches and pre-referral interventions including, but not limited to Response to Intervention (RtI) services in order to remediate a student’s performance.
2. Identifying and maintaining information about students with disabilities residing in the district including those attending private school;
3. Ensuring that students with disabilities and their parent(s)/guardian(s) receive prior written notice whenever the district proposes or refuses to initiate or change the identification, evaluation or educational placement of a student;
4. Ensuring that each student with a disability receives a comprehensive, nonbiased evaluation to determine his/her educational needs;
5. Ensuring all appropriate accommodations are provided to students with disabilities for all district and statewide assessments;
6. Developing an individualized education program (IEP) for each student with a disability;
7. Appointing and training appropriate qualified members of a CSE;
8. Ensuring that all staff retained by the district meet the current guidelines for highly qualified status;
9. Providing training as needed for teachers and support staff to help address identified needs of special education students;
10. Providing appropriate declassification procedures for students with disabilities including regular consideration for declassification and providing re-evaluation when appropriate prior to declassification;
11. Maintaining lists of impartial hearing officers and of State Education Department approved special education programs within the county and adjoining counties in which the district is located;
12. Ensuring that adequate and appropriate space is available to meet the needs of students with disabilities;
13. Ensure that parents of students with disabilities placed in residential facilities by the CSE are provided with reimbursement for mileage and tolls for periodic visits to the facility as defined in SED regulations;
14. Annually appointing surrogate parents for students with disabilities whose parents cannot be located or identified, for students who are determined to be an unaccompanied homeless child or a student who is a ward of the state and parental rights have been terminated; and
15. Reporting to the State Education Department the number of children with disabilities that are being served.

The Board is responsible for arranging for the appropriate, approved services recommended by the CSE. Should the Board disagree with the recommendation of the CSE, the Board will either return the recommendation to the original CSE for further consideration or establish a second CSE to develop a new recommendation for the student within the time frames contained in State law and regulations. Placement may be appealed by a parent/guardian to an impartial hearing officer, appointed by the Board. Mediation shall be made available to such parents/guardians to resolve complaints regarding the education of students with disabilities at the same time notice of the availability of an impartial hearing is provided.

The CSE shall annually review and report on the status of each student with a disability through summary reports. The Director for Pupil Personnel Services shall provide the Superintendent with an annual report of special education programs and services.

Locate and Identify Students with Disabilities

The district will conduct an annual census to locate and identify all students with disabilities who reside in the district, and establish a register of such students who are entitled to attend the public schools of the district during the next school year, including students with disabilities who are homeless or wards of the State. The census shall be conducted, and the registry maintained, in accordance with the requirements established in Commissioner’s regulations.

The Superintendent will determine what other activities might be appropriate to help locate and identify students with disabilities. These may include, but are not limited to, the mailing of letters to all district residents regarding the availability of special education programs and services and their right to access such services, and/or the publication of a similar notice in school newsletters and other publications.

(Refer to policy 4321.10, Programs and Services for Parentally-placed Nonpublic School Students with Disabilities under the IDEA and New York’s Education Law Article 89, for more information regarding how to locate and identify nonpublic school students with disabilities).

Evaluation of Students with Disabilities

To initially determine a student’s eligibility for a free appropriate public education under the IDEA and Article 89, the district will conduct a full evaluation of the student in accordance within legally prescribed time lines. As set forth in Commissioner’s regulations, the initial evaluation will include, at least, a physical examination, an individual psychological evaluation unless the school psychologist determines it unnecessary, a social history, an observation of the student in the student’s learning environment to document the student’s academic performance and behavior in the areas of difficulty, and other appropriate assessments or evaluations (including a functional behavioral assessment for a student whose behavior impedes his or he learning or that of others) to ascertain the physical, mental, behavioral and emotional factors that contribute to the suspected disabilities.
Once a student has been determined eligible to receive a free appropriate public education, the district will reevaluate the student with a disability whenever the student’s parent requests a reevaluation, and when the district determines the educational and related services needs (including improved academic achievement and functional performance) of the child warrant a reevaluation. However, a reevaluation must take place at least once every three years, unless the student’s parent and the district agree it is unnecessary.

Parental Consent for Student Evaluations

Before conducting any type of evaluation, district staff will take steps to obtain written informed consent from a student’s parent, as required by applicable law and regulations. They also will keep a detailed record of those attempts and their results, including phone calls and correspondence, visits to the parent’s home and any responses received.

1. If a parent refuses to give consent for an initial evaluation, or fails to respond to such a request, the parent will be given an opportunity to attend an informal conference and ask questions about the proposed evaluation. Unless the referral for evaluation is withdrawn, if the parent continues to withhold consent, the Board will commence due process proceedings to conduct an initial evaluation without parental consent within the time lines established in Commissioner’s regulations.
2. If a parent refuses to give consent for a reevaluation, or fails to respond to such a request, district staff will proceed with the reevaluation without parental consent if it has engaged in documented reasonable efforts to obtain such consent and the parent has failed to respond. If the district cannot document its efforts to obtain consent, the Board will commence due process proceedings to conduct a reevaluation without parental consent.
3. If district staff is unable to obtain consent for the initial evaluation or reevaluation of a home schooled or a parentally-placed nonpublic school student, the Board will not commence due process proceedings to conduct the evaluation without parental consent, and will consider the student as not eligible for special education.

Conduct of Evaluations

In conducting evaluations of students with disabilities, the district will use a variety of assessment tools and strategies, including parent-provided information, to gather relevant functional, developmental, and academic information for determining a student’s eligibility for special education and related services, and the content of the student’s individualized education program or individualized education services program or services plan in the case of nonpublic school students with disabilities (including information related to enabling the student to be involved in and progress in the general education curriculum).

The district also will assess a student in all areas of suspected disability, and the assessment and other evaluation used will not be discriminatory on a racial or cultural basis. In addition, students will be assessed in the language and form most likely to yield accurate information on what the student actually knows and can do academically, developmentally, and functionally, unless it is not feasible to do so.

In the case of students suspected of having a specific learning disability, the district will follow the procedures established in commissioner’s regulations.
The district will notify a student’s parent of any determination that no additional data is needed and the reasons for such a determination. It will also inform the parent of his or her right to request an assessment, notwithstanding that determination.

Eligibility Determination

The CSE or CSE subcommittee will determine whether a student is eligible for special education and related services under the IDEA and Article 89, as well as the student’s educational needs.

The CSE or CSE subcommittee may not determine that a student is eligible for special education and related services if the determining factor is lack of appropriate instruction in the essential components of reading, including phonemic awareness, phonics, vocabulary development, reading fluency (including oral reading skills), and reading comprehension strategies; or lack of appropriate instruction in math; or limited English proficiency.

Committee on Special Education

The members of the CSE and CSE subcommittees will include those individuals identified in applicable law and regulations, and their attendance at CSE and CSE subcommittee meetings will be required except as otherwise provided in law and regulations.

The parent of a student with disabilities is one of the mandated CSE and CSE subcommittee members and as such has a right to participate in CSE and CSE subcommittee meetings concerning the identification, evaluation, educational placement, and the provision of a free appropriate public education to their child. District staff will take steps to ensure the parent’s participation, in accordance with the following:

1. CSE and CSE subcommittee meetings will be scheduled at a time and place that is mutually agreeable to the parent and the district.
2. The parent will be given at least five days’ notice of the time and place of a CSE or CSE subcommittee meeting, except as otherwise provided in law and regulation, along with notice of the purpose of the meeting, those who will attend (including name and title), and the parent’s right to be accompanied to the meeting by person(s) the parent considers to have knowledge and special expertise about their child.
3. The parent and the district may agree to use alternative means of participation at CSE meetings, such as videoconferences or telephone conference calls.
4. District staff will take any action necessary to ensure that the parent understands the proceedings at CSE meetings, including arranging for an interpreter for deaf parents or parents whose native language is other than English.

The CSE or CSE subcommittee may meet without a student’s parent only if district staff has been unable to obtain either parent’s participation, and has a record of its attempts to arrange a mutually agreed upon time and place. Similarly, the CSE or CSE subcommittee may make a decision without the involvement of the student’s parent only if district staff has been unable to obtain parental participation, even through the use of alternative means of participation, and has a record of its attempts to ensure parental involvement.

Provision of Services

The Board will arrange for appropriate special education and related services recommended by the CSE or CSE subcommittee within 60 school days of the district’s receipt of parental consent to evaluate a student not previously identified as a student with a disability, or within 60 school days of referral for review of a student with a disability, except as otherwise provided in law and regulations.

All staff responsible for the implementation of a student’s individualized education program, or an individualized education services program or services plan in the case of parentally placed nonpublic school students with disabilities, will be provided information regarding those responsibilities (Refer to policy 4321.5 for more information on this topic).

Parental Consent for the Provision of Services

The Board acknowledges that parental consent for initial evaluation does not constitute consent for placement for the provision of special education and related services. Therefore, district staff will take steps to obtain written informed consent for the initial provision of special education and related services to an eligible student. The Board will be precluded by applicable law and regulations from commencing due process proceedings to override the parent’s refusal to provide such consent or override the parent’s failure to respond to such a request.

Transition Service and Diploma/Credential Options

In accordance with law and regulation, the Board will ensure the provision of transition services, which are a coordinated set of activities for students with disabilities that facilitates movement from school to post-school activities, which may include but are not limited to post-secondary education, vocational education, integrated employment, continuing and adult education, adult services, independent living or community participation. At age 15, or younger if appropriate, the student’s IEP will include a statement of transition service needs and will include undertaking activities in the following areas:

  • Instruction
  • Related services
  • Community experiences
  • The development of employment and other post-school adult living objectives; and
  • When appropriate, acquisition of daily living skills and provision of a functional vocational evaluation.

In developing the plan for transition services, students and parents will be made aware of the range of diploma and credential options available and the requirements associated with each option.

Adopted February 10, 1998
Revised November 17, 1998
Revised March 13, 2007
Reviewed June 22, 2010
Revised, Adopted June 17, 2014
Revised, Adopted October 4, 2016
Revised, Adopted May 1, 2018

4321.1 Allocation of Space for Special Education Programs and Services

The Board of Education recognizes its responsibility to ensure that appropriate space is available for:

1. Special programs and services provided to meet the needs of students and preschool students with disabilities both within its own facilities, and in programs provided by the board of cooperative educational services (BOCES) and attended by district residents; and
2. Serving students with disabilities in settings with non-disabled peers, as well.

The district will address such space allocation needs as part of its annual budget cycle, during the annual or any more frequent re-evaluation of its long-range educational facilities plan and as part of the district’s special education services plan.
Through the Superintendent, the district also will share with the BOCES District Superintendent information relevant for the BOCES to determine its own facility the regional space needs for serving the district’s resident students and preschool students with disabilities.
As part of the process for ensuring the allocation of appropriate space for special education programs and services and serving students with disabilities in settings with non-disabled peers, the Superintendent, in consultation with appropriate school personnel will, at a minimum:

1. Periodically gather information regarding the number of students and preschool students with disabilities presently participating and anticipated to continue to participate in the district’s special education programs and services, the type of programming they presently receive and may receive in the future, as well as the setting in which those services are and/or will be provided.
2. Review the results of the district’s latest census, and other district child find efforts, including child find activities conducted with respect to parentally-placed nonpublic school students with disabilities.
3. Anticipate any projected increase in the number of students and preschool students with disabilities the district will be responsible for providing special education programs and services to, the anticipated type of services they will be receiving and the settings in which those services will be provided.
4. Based on the above information, review current space capacity, and identify any additional space requirements to meet both current and future needs.

Adopted October 4, 2016

4321.10 Provision of Special Education and Related Services to Students with Disabilities Enrolled in Non-Public Schools

Pursuant to applicable federal and State law and regulation, the Board of Education of the Guilderland Central School District hereby adopts the following policies and procedures with respect to the provision of special education and related services to be provided to children with disabilities voluntarily enrolled by their parents in private or parochial (non-public) schools who are seeking services from their districts of residence. This policy is not applicable to students who have been placed in non-public schools by the Committee on Special Education or by the Committee on Preschool Special Education.

1. The District shall offer a free appropriate public education to all children with disabilities enrolled by their parents in non-public schools located in the District pursuant to contracts entered into with the child’s District of Residence except that for children attending such schools who do not reside in the state of New York where an out-of-state district does not provide for such contract, the District shall provide those evaluations and services to the extent required by federal law.
2. Pursuant to N.Y. Education Law Section 3602-c, the District shall arrange for services for children residing within New York in accordance with the following procedures.

The District shall provide those services requested by the child’s school district of residence pursuant to a contract entered into between the parties.

The determination of where the services will be offered shall remain within the discretion of the school district except where the law requires otherwise. In all other cases, the District shall retain its discretion to offer these services (i) at the public school; (ii) at the non-public school or (iii) at another site.
Where the district offers the service at a location other than the non-public school, the District shall provide transportation, where necessary, to enable the student to access these services.

For resident students enrolled in non-public schools outside the District, the District shall contract for provision of services with the District in which the non-public school is located (the District of Location).
3. The decision regarding the location of services offered to a student with a disability enrolled in a non-public school shall be made by the Director of Pupil Personnel Services on a case-by-case basis based on consideration of all relevant factors including financial and efficiency considerations. Under no circumstances shall a decision regarding the location of services obligate the school district to provide the same or similar services at a like location in any other case or in subsequent years.

Furthermore, the district specifically retains the right, in its discretion, to change the location at which services shall be provided at any time.

4. The Board of Education directs the Director of Pupil Personnel Services to notify parents of children with disabilities who may enroll their child in a private school of the June 1 deadline for requesting such services by publishing notice of the deadline in the school calendar or by attaching an addendum to the district’s Notice of Procedural Safeguards.
5. The Board of Education further directs the Director of Pupil Personnel Services to schedule a consultation meeting with representatives of all non-public schools located within the district to meet the following obligations:
a. Advise and document how non-public school personnel or a parent may refer to the public school a resident non-public school student for an evaluation if suspected of having a disability. The district’s activities attendant to its non-public school Child Find obligations shall be comparable to activities undertaken for students with disabilities enrolled in the district.
b. Encourage attendance by representatives of the non-public school at district meetings of the Committee on Special Education (CSE) or Committee on Preschool Education (CPSE) for children enrolled in their schools. The district’s efforts to secure the attendance of representatives of the nonpublic schools for students attending there shall be documented by the Committee chairperson, as appropriate.
c. Discuss the manner in which the district proposes to provide services to students with disabilities enrolled in the non-public schools, and to provide private school representatives and parents enrolled there with a genuine opportunity to express their views regarding how and where services might be provided and how such services will be evaluated.
d. Advise representatives of the non-public school of the June 1 deadline for requesting such services and the parents’ obligation to put such request in writing to the chairperson of the Committee on Special Education.
6. Parental Consent Needed by the School District of Location
Federal law and regulations require the following:
a) If a student with a disability is parentally placed, or is going to be parentally placed in a nonpublic school that is not located in the school district where the student legally resides, parental consent must be obtained by the school district of location before any personally identifiable information about the student is shared between officials in the public school district of residence and officials in the public school district of location. Therefore, parent consent is required before sharing Individualized Education Programs (IEPs) and other education records between the district of residence and the district of location.
b) If a parent who has placed a student with a disability in a nonpublic school at his/her own expense does not provide consent for the initial evaluation or the reevaluation, or the parent fails to respond to a request to provide consent, the district of location may not use the due process hearing to override lack of parental consent; and the district of location is not required to consider the student as eligible for special education services.

7. The Board of Education directs the Director of Pupil Personnel Services to ensure that monies expended to provide special education and related services to nonpublic schoolchildren meets or exceeds a proportionate amount of federal funds received by the district relative to the number of non-public school disabled students enrolled in private schools by their parents located in the district.

Adopted November 1, 2016

4321.11 Public Report on Revisions to District Policies, Practices and Procedures upon a Finding of Significant Disproportionality

The Board of Education recognizes that, despite the district’s best efforts, there may be times when there might be a disproportionate representation of racial and ethnic groups in its special education programs and services, and/or with respect to the suspension of students with disabilities. To minimize the risk of such an occurrence, the Board has endeavored to adopt policies, practices and procedures for the district that are consistent with the IDEA and Article 89 of New York’s Education Law, and their implementing regulations.
Nonetheless, upon learning of a significant disproportionality either in the suspension, identification, classification and/or placement of the district’s students with disabilities, the Board will immediately review the district’s policies, practices and procedures to determine whether they are fully compliant with the requirements of the IDEA and Article 89, or require revisions. If changes are needed, the Board will take immediate steps to adopt and implement any and all necessary revisions.

The Board will inform the public of any revisions to the district’s policies, practices and procedures undertaken as a result of a finding of significant disproportionality. The Superintendent will notify school personnel responsible for implementing the revisions.

Adopted November 1, 2016

4321.12 Use of Time Out Rooms and Physical Restraints

The Board of Education recognizes that students with disabilities sometimes exhibit inappropriate behaviors that impede learning. As a result, students with disabilities may require unique approaches to discipline so that they can continue to benefit from their educational program. The Board further acknowledges that the use of aversive behavioral intervention, as defined in §19.5 of the Commissioner’s regulations, is prohibited.

The use of a time out room or physical restraint will be in conformance with a child’s individual education program (IEP). Staff will adhere to federal and state statue and regulation in the administration of these measures.

Time Out Room

A time out room is a supervised area for a student to safely deescalate, regain control and prepare to meet expectations to return to his/her educational program. The room will only be used in conjunction with a behavioral intervention plan, as part of the student’s IEP, or when it is necessary to remove a student from a potentially dangerous situation in unanticipated situations that pose an immediate concern for the physical safety of a student or others. The location, size and access to the time out room will be in conformance with applicable laws and regulations. The Director of Pupil Personnel Services will be responsible for the development and implementation of regulations covering the use of a time out room, as well as monitoring compliance with those regulations.

The Director of Pupil Personnel Services or designee will inform parents prior to the initiation of a behavioral intervention plan that will incorporate the use of a time out room. Upon request, the parent will be shown the space that will be utilized. In addition, the parent will be provided a copy of this policy.

Physical Restraint: Emergency Interventions

Staff will not use physical restraint as a substitute for systematic intervention to modify inappropriate behavior. Staff who may be called upon to physically restrain a student will be trained on safe and effective ways to do so. Physical restraint may be used in an emergency where no other approach would be effective in controlling the student’s behavior.

During emergencies, immediate intervention by staff involving the use of reasonable physical force may be necessary, either to protect people or property from injury or damage, or to restrain or remove a student whose behavior is interfering with the orderly functioning of the school, if that student has refused to comply with a request to refrain from further disruptive acts.

The district shall document the use of emergency interventions for each student. This shall include the student’s name and date of birth, the setting and location of the incident, the staff members involved, other persons involved, a description of the incident and the intervention used, the duration of the incident, a statement as to whether the student has a current behavioral intervention plan, and details of any injuries sustained by either the student or others as a result of the incident. Documentation of emergency interventions shall be reviewed by school supervisory personnel and, as necessary, the school nurse or other medical personnel. The student’s parents/guardians shall be notified of each incident of emergency intervention.

Training

Training for staff on the policies and procedures related to the use of time out rooms, physical restraint, and related behavior management practices will be provided annually or as needed.

The Director of Pupil Personnel Services will be responsible for implementation and oversight of this policy.

Adopted January 23, 2018

4321.12-R Use of Time Out Rooms and Physical Restraints-Regulation

A time out room is a supervised area for a student to safely deescalate, regain control and prepare to meet expectations to return to his/her educational program. Time out rooms may only be used when needed for unanticipated situations that pose an immediate concern for the physical safety of a student or others, or in conjunction with a behavioral intervention plan in a student’s Individualized Education Program (IEP). The district’s use of time out rooms shall conform to applicable state regulations.

1. Physical requirements

Time out rooms shall allow for continuous visual and auditory monitoring of the student. The room shall be large enough to allow a student to move freely and lay down comfortably. Wall and floor coverings shall be designed to prevent student injury where possible, and there shall be adequate lighting and ventilation. The temperature of the room shall be within the normal comfort range, and consistent with the rest of the building. The room shall be clean and free of objects and fixtures that could be potentially dangerous to a student, and shall meet all local fire and safety codes.

2. Monitoring, Observation and Supervision

School staff shall continuously monitor the student in a time out room. The staff must be able to see and hear the student at all times.

3. Prohibition on Locks

Time out rooms or spaces shall be unlocked, and the door must be able to be opened from the inside.

4. IEP Requirements

A student’s IEP shall specify when a behavioral intervention plan includes the use of a time out room for a student with a disability, including the maximum amount of time a student will need to be in a time out room as a behavioral consequence, as determined on an individual basis, in consideration of the student’s age and individual needs. The behavioral intervention plan shall be designed to teach and reinforce alternative appropriate behaviors.

5. Precipitating Factors

The factors that may lead to a student being temporarily placed in a time out room will depend on the particular student. Generally, time out rooms are to be used when a student needs to deescalate, regain control and prepare to meet expectations to return to his or her education program. A student in need of a time out room may be unable to control his/her actions, overwhelmed, overstimulated, exhibiting violent actions, or posing a danger to self or others.

6. Time Limitations

The amount of time a student may spend in a time out room will vary with the student’s age, individual needs, behavioral intervention plan, and the specific circumstances. Students shall spend only as much time in the time out room as is necessary for them to deescalate, regain control, return to their educational programs, or no longer pose a concern for the physical safety of themselves or others. Students shall not be in a time out room for more than the maximum amount of time specified in their behavioral intervention plans. For emergency use, where a time out room is not specified in a student’s behavioral intervention plan, but where such emergency use is not inconsistent with the student’s IEP, the maximum time to be spent in a time out room shall be 30 minutes. If a student is not ready to return to the educational program after that period of time, he/she shall be provided with further interventions consistent with his/her behavioral intervention plan or IEP, or actions reasonably calculated to assist the student.

7. Staff Training

All staff authorized to place a student in a time out room shall receive training on the procedures for placing a student in a time out room, including situations warranting use of a time out room, IEP requirements, continuous monitoring, time limitations, and data collection. Only trained staff authorized by the school principal may place a student in a time out room. Staff not authorized to place a student in a time out room shall receive training on what to do and who to contact if a student is exhibiting behaviors indicating the need for use of the time out room.

8. Data Collection to Monitor Effectiveness

The district shall document the use of time out rooms, and monitor the effectiveness of the use of time out rooms to decrease the behaviors that led to the use of the rooms. Such documentation will include a record for each student placed in a time out room. Each record shall show, for each use of the time out room, the date, time, duration of stay, precipitating factors, staff members involved, and the student’s behaviors/condition before, during and after use of the time out room. Copies of these records shall be sent to the student’s teachers, CSE chairperson, Director of Pupil Personnel Services, and Building Principal. Appropriate staff shall meet regularly as needed to review the effectiveness of the time out room for each student placed in one. Building Principals shall periodically report on the use and effectiveness of time out rooms to the Director of Pupil Personnel Services and Superintendent.

9. Parent/Guardian Rights and Information

The district shall inform parents/guardians prior to the initiation of a behavioral intervention for their child which will incorporate the use of a time out room. Parents/guardians shall be given the opportunity to see the physical space used as a time out room.

Parents/guardians shall be given a copy of this policy and regulation on time out rooms. The district shall notify parents/guardians each time a student is placed in the time out room.

Reviewed January 23, 2018

4321.14 Special Education Personnel

The Board acknowledges its responsibility to recruit, hire, train and retain highly qualified personnel, as defined in the federal Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) and its accompanying regulations and in Article 89 of New York State Education law and its accompanying regulations, to provide special education programs and services. In addition, the Board is committed to appointing appropriately qualified personnel to the Committee (and subcommittee) on Special Education (CSE) and Committee (and subcommittee) on Preschool Special Education (CPSE).

The Board will fulfill its obligation with regard to special education personnel by taking measurable steps including, but not limited to the following:

1. Actively recruit personnel who possess prior experience working with students with disabilities.
2. Solicit resumes from graduates of institutions of higher education that offer programs in special education.
3. Seek candidates for teaching positions who are dually certified, to the extent possible.
4. Ensure that every member of the professional staff participates in annual professional performance reviews and professional development plans.
5. Provide appropriate on-going training and professional development to CSE and CPSE members, and other special education program and service providers to ensure their continuing awareness of their obligations and responsibilities under the law.

The Superintendent is responsible for ensuring that the professional staff is appropriately certified, licensed and trained and that they meet the “highly qualified” standard established in federal and state law. In the event that highly qualified individuals are not available, despite the best efforts of the administration, the Board recognizes its responsibilities to meet the alternative standards established by the State Education Department.

Adopted November 1, 2016

4321.15 Provision of Special Education Services in the Lease Restrictive Environment

The Board of Education recognizes its responsibility to ensure that students with disabilities who are eligible for special education programs and services under the IDEA and Article 89 of New York’s Education Law receive those services in the least restrictive environment appropriate to meet their individual educational needs.

Therefore, the district will not place students with disabilities in special classes or separate schools, or otherwise remove them from the regular educational environment unless the nature or severity of their disability is such that their education cannot be achieved satisfactorily in regular classes, even with the use of supplementary aids and services. In addition, the district will provide special services or programs to enable students with disabilities to be involved in and progress in the general curriculum, to the extent appropriate to their needs.

To fulfill its responsibility to educate students with disabilities in the least restrictive environment, the district will implement the provisions of Section 200.6 of Commissioner’s Regulations.

Furthermore, and pursuant to those provisions, students with disabilities placed together for purposes of receiving special education will be grouped by similarity of individual needs including their range of academic achievement, functional performance and learning characteristics, social and physical development, and management needs.

The Board also recognizes that the least restrictive environment requirements established by applicable law and regulations also extend to nonacademic settings. Therefore the district will provide students with disabilities the opportunity to participate with non-disabled students in school-sponsored co-curricular and extracurricular activities, to the maximum extent appropriate to each individual student’s needs. The district also will provide students with disabilities with supplementary aids and services that the CSE or CSE subcommittee, as applicable, determines to be appropriate and necessary for the student to participate in such activities.

Adopted November 1, 2016

4321.2 Preschool Special Education

The Board of Education recognizes the value of special education and its responsibility in ensuring that all resident preschool children with disabilities have the opportunity to participate in special programs and services from which they may benefit. The Board authorizes the Superintendent of Schools to establish administrative practices and procedures which shall include:

1. locating and identifying all preschool children with disabilities pursuant to the relevant provisions of the Education Law. The register of children eligible to attend a preschool program is to be maintained and revised annually by the Committee on Preschool Special Education (CPSE);
2. ensuring that the parent(s)/guardian(s) of preschool age children with disabilities have received and understand the request for consent for evaluation of their child;
3. developing an individualized education program (IEP) for each preschool age child with a disability;
4. appointing and training appropriately qualified personnel including the members of a CPSE; and
5. reporting to the State Education Department the number of children with disabilities that are being served.

The Board of Education hereby establishes the CPSE as required under the Education Law. Its responsibilities will include the evaluation and recommendation for placement in appropriate approved programs and the provision of appropriate special education programs and services for each preschool child with a disability. The CPSE shall review, at least annually, the status of each preschool child with a disability.

It is ultimately the responsibility of the Board to arrange for the appropriate approved preschool programs and services for the district children. Should the Board disagree with the CPSE’s recommendations, it shall send the recommendation back to the CPSE so that they may schedule a timely meeting to review the Board’s concerns and to revise the IEP as deemed appropriate.

The Board directs the Superintendent to ensure that the district considers that adequate and appropriate space is made available for such programs and services.

The Board directs the Superintendent to develop and maintain a plan which incorporates information concerning the provision of services for preschool children with disabilities, pursuant to the Regulations of the Commissioner of Education.

Adopted February 10, 1998
Reviewed March 13, 2007
Reviewed June 22, 2010
Revised, Adopted October 4, 2016

4321.3 Independent Educational Evaluations

The Board of Education recognizes the right of parents or guardians of a student who has or is thought to have a disability to receive an independent evaluation at public expense if they disagree with the evaluation obtained by the Committee on Special Education (CSE) or the Committee on Preschool Special Education (CPSE).
The independent examination shall be conducted by a qualified examiner who is not employed by the school district responsible for the child’s education. Upon request, parents will be provided with a list of public and private agencies and professional resources where independent evaluations may be obtained. In addition, the school district will pay for evaluations performed by an employee of any other New York State public school district or BOCES whom the parent chooses to employ as an independent evaluator. These publicly-funded independent evaluations are limited to the same geographic and fiscal limitations as used by the district when it initiates an evaluation (see accompanying regulation).
Parents or guardians should file a written request for an independent educational evaluation with the Director of Pupil Personnel Services, following receipt of the CSE or CPSE evaluation. Acknowledgment to the parent will be in letter form as well as the district’s subsequent decision. If the request is denied, reason(s) must be provided. The district may accept the parental request or can initiate an impartial hearing to demonstrate that its evaluation is appropriate. If the hearing officer determines that the district’s evaluation was appropriate, a parent or guardian is not entitled to reimbursement at public expense.
The Board directs the Superintendent to develop regulations establishing maximum allowable fees for specific tests, required evaluation components, the geographic area in which such evaluations may take place, minimum qualifications of the locally/regional qualified professionals who administer and interpret various tests, and a reasonable timeline for seeking reimbursement.

Adopted: February 10, 1998
Reviewed: March 13, 2007
Revised: March 24, 2009
Reviewed: June 22, 2010
Revised, Adopted: October 4, 2016

4321.3-R Independent Educational Evaluations Regulation

An “independent educational evaluation” (IEE) of a student, who has or is thought to have a disability, is an evaluation conducted by a qualified examiner who is not employed by the School District responsible for the education of the child.

“Public expense” means that the District either pays for the cost of the IEE or ensures that it is otherwise provided at no cost to the parent or legal guardian.
The District’s evaluations include psycho educational evaluations, educational evaluations, speech/language evaluations, occupational, physical therapy evaluations and any other educational evaluations required to develop an Individualized Education Plan as approved by the Committee on Special Education. If a parent or legal guardian disagrees with an evaluation conducted by the District, the parent or legal guardian may request an

independent educational evaluation at public expense.

The District must either ensure that the IEE is provided at public expense or file a due process complaint to initiate an impartial hearing to show that its evaluation is appropriate. If the hearing officer determines that the District’s evaluation is appropriate, the parent or legal guardian has the right to an IEE, but not at public expense.

Request for Independent Educational Evaluations

An “independent educational evaluation” (IEE) of a student, who has or is thought to have a disability, is an evaluation conducted by a qualified examiner who is not employed by the School District responsible for the education of the child.

“Public expense” means that the District either pays for the cost of the IEE or ensures that it is otherwise provided at no cost to the parent or legal guardian.
The District’s evaluations include psycho educational evaluations, educational evaluations, speech/language evaluations, occupational, physical therapy evaluations and any other educational evaluations required to develop an Individualized Education Plan as approved by the Committee on Special Education. If a parent or legal guardian disagrees with an evaluation conducted by the District, the parent or legal guardian may request an independent educational evaluation at public expense.

The District must either ensure that the IEE is provided at public expense or file a due process complaint to initiate an impartial hearing to show that its evaluation is appropriate. If the hearing officer determines that the District’s evaluation is appropriate, the parent or legal guardian has the right to an IEE, but not at public expense.

Selection of Qualified Professionals

1. Independent evaluations shall be conducted by individuals who possess a current license and/or current certification in the area of evaluation from the State Education Department.

2. The district will not consider for payment at public expense independent evaluators outside the Capital Region. A parent may select any independent evaluator who, at the time the parent submits a request for an independent evaluation, provides that such professional is a certified and/or licensed evaluator. Requests for exceptions to these geographic limitations should be forwarded in writing to the Director of Pupil Personnel Services.
3. Parents may also select a qualified professional of any other public school district or BOCES in New York State. Such licensed or certified individual will be paid at the hourly rate currently assigned to him/her by his/her respective public school district or BOCES.
4. The District has established a comprehensive list of qualified professionals in private practice or employees of other public agencies who meet the District’s location and qualification criteria to whom parents or legal guardians may go to secure an independent evaluation. This list will be provided to parents or legal guardians upon request.

If the District’s list is not exhaustive in terms of those minimally qualified to evaluate the specific needs of all students in the District, parents or legal guardians are free to select an evaluator of their own choosing, as long as the evaluator meets the District’s geographic, qualification and reasonable cost criteria.

When a request for an independent evaluation is approved by the school and a qualified professional is selected by the parent/guardian, such independent evaluator shall then be responsible for contacting the district’s Director of Pupil Personnel Services to arrange for payment, dates of classroom visitations, and discussions with school staff.

Fees

A parent or legal guardian will be provided the opportunity to demonstrate that their child’s unique circumstances justify an IEE outside of the District’s criteria. To be at public expense, the IEE must meet the criteria that the District uses for an evaluation, including the cost of the evaluation, the location of the evaluation and the qualifications of the examiner; to the extent those criteria are consistent with the parent or legal guardian’s right to an IEE. If the total cost of an IEE obtained by the parent or legal guardian exceeds the District’s cost criteria and there is no justification for the excess cost, the IEE will be publicly funded only to the extent of the District’s maximum allowable charge set at the district’s annual organization meeting.

  • an individual psychological evaluation;
  • a physical examination;
  • a social history; and
  • other suitable examinations and evaluations as may be necessary to ascertain the physical, mental, and emotional factors which may contribute to a suspected educational disability.

Exceptions shall be granted to this fee schedule where justified by the student’s unique circumstances, upon written approval by the District’s Director of Pupil Personnel Services.

Reviewed: March 13, 2007
Revised: March 24, 2009
Reviewed: June 22, 2010
Revised, Adopted: October 4, 2016

4321.4 Impartial Hearing Process Hearing/Selection of Impartial Hearing Officers

The School District is committed to making every effort to amicably resolve differences involving the educational programs for students with disabilities. Mediation will be available to resolve disputes involving any matter, including matters arising prior to the filing of a request for an impartial hearing. In addition, the District may establish procedures providing the opportunity to meet with a disinterested party from a community dispute resolution center for an explanation of the benefits of the mediation process. For those exceptional circumstances where a more formal method is required, the impartial hearing process will be utilized.

Administrative regulations on impartial due process hearings/selection of impartial hearing officers will be developed in order to explain and detail the selection process and the impartial due process hearing procedures.

Replaced, Adopted October 4, 2016

4321.4-R Impartial Hearing Officer Appointment and Compensation Regulation

The Board of Education establishes the following regulation to govern the appointment and compensation of impartial hearing officers (IHO) for special education related impartial hearings pursuant to Part 200 of the Regulations of the Commissioner of Education.

Appointment

The updated list of certified IHOs for Albany county promulgated by the New York State Education Department will be used in connection with requests for impartial hearings. The list shall include the names of those other certified IHOs whose names appear on the state list and who have indicated to the district their interest in serving as an IHO in the district.

Upon receipt of a request for an impartial hearing, the Board President, or on the occasion of his/her absence or inability, the Vice President, shall appoint an impartial hearing officer from the district=s alphabetical rotational list previously adopted by the Board. At the next regularly scheduled Board of Education meeting, the trustees will be informed of the appointment.
The District Clerk or other person so designated, under the direction of the Board President, shall initiate the selection process by contacting the impartial hearing officer whose name first appears after the impartial hearing officer who last served. The District Clerk or designee shall canvass the list in alphabetical order as prescribed by the Regulations of the Commissioner of Education until an appointment is accepted. All records of attempts shall be recorded in the Impartial Hearing Reporting System (IHRS).

Upon receipt of a request for an impartial hearing, the rotational selection process for the IHO shall be initiated immediately and always within two (2) business days after receipt of by district of such written request. Should an IHO decline appointment, or if within 24 hours the IHO fails to respond or is unreachable after reasonable efforts by the District Clerk or designee, such efforts will be documented through independently verifiable efforts. The district representative shall then proceed through the list to determine availability of the next successive IHO.

If the IHO is unable to initiate the hearing within the first 14 days of being appointed by the school district, the IHO cannot accept the appointment. The District Clerk shall then proceed through such list to determine availability of the next successive IHO. An IHO appointment is contingent on the acceptance of the district=s compensation policy. The appointed IHO agrees to the following:

  • keep a designated staff member informed of all time extensions and deadlines as required by the IHRS system
  • Conduct the hearing in the most efficient manner possible
  • Issue decisions within the mandated time lines; and
  • bill the district monthly.

Records relating to the IHO process including, but not limited to, the request for initiation and completion of each impartial hearing will be maintained by the district and such information will be reported to the State Education Department as required by Commissioner’s regulations.

Compensation

The district shall compensate an impartial hearing officer for his or her services at the maximum rate established for such purpose by the Director of the Division of the Budget. In addition, impartial hearing officers may be reimbursed for reasonable, actual and necessary expenses for automobile travel, meals and overnight lodging in accordance with the current district reimbursement rate set for district employees. Mailing costs associated with the hearing will also be reimbursed. In the event that the hearing is postponed or cancelled, and the IHO is contacted at least 24-hours prior to the scheduled date by district officials, no compensation shall be provided. If there is a postponement or cancellation, and the 24-hour notification requirement is not met, the IHO will be entitled to the negotiated contract rate plus meal, lodging and travel expenses in accordance with district policies.
The district shall annually notify each impartial hearing officer of this policy and of the current rates set by the district for travel reimbursement, overnight lodging, meal expenses and mailing costs as per district policy.

Adopted March 13, 2007
Revised June 22, 2010
Revised (to be a regulation) October 4, 2016

4321.5 Individualized Education Program Distribution

The Board of Education believes that in order for each student with disabilities to receive the full benefit of his/her Individualized Education Program (IEP), individuals responsible for implementing the IEP must be given a copy and be informed of their duties in its implementation..

To this end, this policy aims to establish procedures to ensure that any person responsible for the implementation of an IEP, shall be informed of his/her responsibilities under the IEP, and shall receive or have access to a copy of the student’s IEP, either electronically or on paper, prior to its implementation.

I. IEP Copies

The CSE and CPSE Chairpersons shall ensure that a paper or electronic copy of each student’s IEP is provided to each regular education teacher, special education teacher, special area teachers, related service provider and/or other service provider responsible for implementation of a student’s IEP, prior to its implementation. These individuals responsible for implementing an IEP shall, in turn, ensure that all paraprofessionals (i.e., teacher aides and teaching assistants) and other providers of support staff having ongoing access to the IEP’s of students they assist through the special education teacher, regular education teacher or related service provider.
“Other service provider” means a representative of another public school district, charter school, BOCES program, child care institution school, Special Act school district, State-supported school, approved private in-state or out-of-state school and an approved preschool provider where the student receives or will receive IEP services. The district will take steps to ensure that the parents of the child with a disability receives a copy of the child’s IEP prior to the commencement of the school year and following any meeting where a change of placement is recommended.
If a student is placed by the CSE or CPSE outside the district (e.g., in an approved private school, BOCES, preschool program, or out-of-state residential program), the district’s responsibility is to provide one copy of the student’s IEP, prior to implementation to such programs. It is then the responsibility of these other service providers to implement the requirements of Commissioner’s regulations, including providing copies of the IEP to teachers and related service providers with IEP implementation responsibility, providing ongoing access to the IEP by paraprofessionals and other providers responsible for assisting in the implementation of the IEP and informing all individuals of their specific IEP implementation responsibilities.

II. Notification of IEP Responsibilities

In addition to disseminating copies of a student’s IEP, CSE and CPSE Chairpersons must designate one or more professional employees of the district with knowledge of the student’s disability and program to inform each regular education teacher including core teachers at the middle school and high school, special education teacher, special area teachers, related service providers, other service providers, supplementary school personnel, and other support staff of the responsibility to provide specific accommodations, program modifications, supports and/or services for the student in accordance with the IEP. In selecting the professional staff person(s), the chairperson could select him/herself for this responsibility, another administrator, or a teacher, related service provider or other professional, as appropriate.

III. Confidentiality

All copies of a student’s IEP provided or made accessible under this policy must remain confidential, and shall not be redisclosed to any other person, except in accordance with the Board’s policy governing confidentiality of student records. All IEP copies must remain in a secured location on school grounds at all times. If IEP copies are transmitted and/or provided electronically, security systems (e.g., password protect a file or folder) must be implemented to prevent unauthorized internal and external access to the student’s IEP.

IV. Documentation

For the designated professional employee(s) defined in section II, each person covered by this policy:

1. will attest to the fact that they have read the student’s IEP prior to its implementation, as required under state law and regulation;
2. will be informed of their responsibilities to implement the IEP; and
3. must abide by the district’s confidentiality requirements.

All original copies, past and present, will be maintained in the student’s special education file.

Adopted April 12, 2005
Reviewed March 13, 2007
Revised June 22, 2010
Revised October 4, 2016

4321.6 Availability of Alternative Format Instructional Materials for Students with Disabilities Policy

The Board of Education recognizes its responsibility to ensure that all the instructional materials used in the district’s schools are made available in a usable alternative format for students with disabilities in accordance with their individual educational needs and course selection at the same time as those materials are available to non-disabled students. In accordance with applicable law and regulations, any such alternative format procured by the district will meet the National Instructional Materials Accessibility Standard.
For purposes of this policy, alternative format will mean any medium or format for the presentation of instructional materials, other than a traditional print textbook, that is needed as an accommodation for a student with a disability enrolled in the school district, including but not limited to Braille, large print, open and closed captioned, audio, or an electronic file. An electronic file must be compatible with at least one alternative format conversion software program.
The Superintendent will develop a plan to ensure the availability of alternative format materials in accordance with the timeliness requirements of this policy. Such a plan will provide for:

1. Preference to vendors who agree to provide instructional materials in alternative formats, and to reflect this requirement in the bidding specifications used for the procurement of instructional materials. The same preference will be given to vendors of instructional materials ordered for the school library.
2. Consultation with appropriate school personnel regarding how students will access electronic files. The district’s technology staff will be notified of any need to convert electronic files into an accessible format such as Braille, large print, audio, or alternative display.
3. The availability of hardware and/or software a student with disabilities in need of alternative format materials might require to access the instructional material.
4. The purchase of instructional materials to ensure sufficient lead time for obtaining needed alternative format materials.
5. Notification to appropriate school personnel by the CSE, CSE subcommittee, CPSE and Section 504 Committee Chairperson whenever it is determined that a student needs instructional materials in alternative format. Such notice also will identify the particular alternative format needed, and any assistive technology devices or services the student might need to access the alternative format materials.
6. Notification by classroom teachers of the books they will be using in class and any list of required readings with sufficient lead time in anticipation of the district’s timelines for the purchase of instructional materials.
7. Consultation with the school librarian to make sure that specific library resources required by a student in need of alternative format materials to participate and progress in his or her selected courses are made available to the student in an accessible format.
8. Timely request of state assessments in alternative format.

Adopted November 1, 2016

4321.6-R Availability of Alternative Format Instructional Materials for Students with Disabilities Regulation

4321.6-R Availability of Alternative Format Instructional Materials for Students with Disabilities Regulation

Identification of the Needs of Students Residing in the District

Teachers will assure the availability of instructional materials in alternative formats by anticipating that there may be students in their classes who will require instructional materials in alternative formats. Advance planning in the selection and ordering of books, developing lists of required reading and providing these lists in advance will help ensure that students with disabilities attending their classes receive their instructional materials at the same time as other students in the classes.
If the Committee on Special Education (CSE) determines that a student needs his or her instructional materials in an alternative format, the individualized education program (IEP) will specify the accommodations for the individual student and any related instruction and/or assistive technology devices needed for the student to access the alternative format materials. If the student needs instructional and assessment materials in alternative formats, the CSE should review the following considerations:

  • What alternative format is needed?
  • What instruction is needed for the student to use the alternative format materials?
  • What assessment technology devices or services are needed for the student to access the alternative format materials?
  • What supports for school personnel may be needed related to the alternative format(s) recommended?
  • What assistance do the parents need to help them acquire skills necessary to support the child/s use of the instructional materials and/or related assistive technology devices?
  • What testing accommodations might a student need related to the alternative formats?

Access to and Conversion of Electronic Files

Instructional materials provided in electronic files can offer many flexible options for a student with a disability to access the curriculum when the files are used with a variety of technology and tools such as computer screens using highlighted or enlarged text, screen readers or Braille printers. Students will have access to appropriate software and hardware in order to provide these materials in an alternative format. This would include but not be limited to computers, printers, scanners, alternative keyboards, Braille note takers, tape recorders, screen readers, speaking browsers, screen magnification devices, scan and read, and Braille translation. The district will also access appropriate agencies and resource centers to assist in the conversion of materials into Braille format.

Ordering Timelines

Braille and large-type test booklets will be obtained from the State Education Department for all N.Y.S. Assessments. The Braille and large-type test booklets requested will be included in the regular shipment to the school. These tests will be ordered at the same time that tests are ordered for non-disabled students. If reproduction and/or reformatting of test booklets are required, written advance permission of the State Education Department will be obtained in sufficient time as to administer the test at the same time as administered to non-disabled students. If Braille or large print conversions are requested, the district will request this conversion at least three months in advance of the exam.

The district will inquire of publisher sales representatives about available formats. If the instructional materials needed by the student cannot be purchased in alternative formats, the district will make reasonable efforts to adapt or convert the materials or provide substantially equivalent materials to the student in a format he or she can access. Consideration will be given as to sufficient time to convert these materials so that the student will be able to participate and progress in the general curriculum.

Selection and Procurement of Instructional Materials

The district utilizes a textbook selection committee when considering the purchase of new textbooks or materials. The committee will be informed of the need to give preference to those vendors who agree to provide materials in alternative formats.
When the district selects any new instructional materials for a course, consideration will be given, as one factor, if such materials are available from the vendor in the alternative format(s) needed by the student. Where different textbooks meet the district’s criteria for a particular subject matter, the district will give preference to the vendor that agrees to provide materials in alternative formats. If competitive bidding is required for the purchase of instructional material, bid specifications will be drafted to allow the district to select the bidder who can provide materials in an alternative formats in a timely fashion by making alternative format availability a specification of the bid.

Procedures for New Entrants During the School Year

When a new student enters the district, the CSE will review the student’s previous IEP to determine if the IEP has specified the need for materials to be provided in an alternative format. If the IEP indicates that the student requires an alternative format, the district will immediately either provide the necessary software or hardware necessary for the conversion or contact the appropriate agency to either purchase or convert the materials.
If a student requires additional materials in an alternative format, the special education teacher or school psychologist will be responsible to provide this information to the Director of Pupil Personnel Services. The Director will be responsible for arranging the provision of materials in an alternative format.

Reviewed November 1, 2016

4321.7 Districtwide and Statewide Assessments of Students with Disabilities

The Board of Education of the Guilderland Central School District adopts this policy to assure that:

  • Assessments administered to students with disabilities provide results that
    accurately reflect a student’s ability or achievement level on whatever factors the test purports to measure.
  • Testing accommodations are recommended by the appropriate committee, as required by law, to provide students with disabilities the opportunity to:
    • Participate fully in the instructional and assessment program;
    • Demonstrate their strength, knowledge, and skills without being restricted by their disability, and
    • Provide an accurate measure of the standards assessed.
  • Testing accommodations are only recommended to remove obstacles to the test-taking process and not to change the skills or knowledge tested.
  • The student’s teacher(s) assigned to administer an assessment or test shall ensure that all relevant testing accommodations included on the student’s individualized education program or §504 Plan are implemented to the extent possible.

Adopted November 1, 2016

4321.9 Declassification of Students with Disabilities Policy

The Board of Education recognizes the importance of setting appropriate procedures to determine whether or not students should be declassified from special education services. The School District will establish and implement a plan for the appropriate declassification of students with disabilities which must include:

  • The regular consideration for declassifying students when appropriate;
  • A reevaluation of the student prior to declassification; and
  • The provision of educational and support services to the student upon declassification.

Eligibility Determination

The Committee on Special Education (CSE) must evaluate a student with a disability prior to determining that a student is no longer a student with a disability as defined in accordance with Commissioner’s Regulations, and the District shall provide a copy of the evaluation report and the documentation of eligibility to the student’s parent/legal guardian. The results of any reevaluations must be addressed by the Committee on Special Education (CSE) in a meeting to review and, as appropriate, revise the student’s Individualized Education Plan (IEP).
Prior to the reevaluation, the School District shall obtain informed written parent/legal guardian consent unless otherwise authorized pursuant to law and/or regulation. Parent/legal guardian consent need not be obtained if the District can demonstrate that it has taken reasonable measures to obtain that consent, and the student’s parent/legal guardians fail to respond. The District must have a record of its attempts to obtain parent/legal guardian consent. Should the student’s parent/legal guardians refuse consent for the reevaluation, the District may continue to pursue the reevaluation by using mediation and/or due process procedures.
The District shall take action to ensure that the parent/legal guardian understands the proceedings at the meeting of the Committee on Special Education (CSE), including arranging for an interpreter for parent/legal guardians with deafness or whose native language is other than English.

Recommendation for Declassification

If the student has been receiving special education services, but the Committee on Special Education (CSE) determines that the student no longer meets eligibility for special education services, the recommendation shall:

  • Identify the declassification support services, if any, to be provided to the student; and/or the student’s teachers; and
  • Indicate the projected date of initiation of such services, the frequency of provision of such services, and the duration of these services, provided that such services shall not continue for more than one (1) year after the student has been declassified.

Declassification Support Services

When appropriate, the District shall provide declassification support services to students who have been declassified in accordance with the recommendation of the Committee on Special Education (CSE).
Declassification support services are services provided by persons appropriately certified pursuant to Part 80 of Commissioner’s Regulations, or holding a valid teaching license in the appropriate area of service.

Procedural Safeguards Notice

The District shall use the procedural safeguards notice prescribed by the Commissioner of Education. The District will further ensure that the procedural safeguards notice is provided in the native language of the parent/legal guardian or other mode of communication used by the parent/legal guardian, unless it is clearly not feasible to do so. If the native language or other mode of communication of the parent/legal guardian is not a written language, the District shall take steps to ensure that the notice is translated orally or by other means to the parent/legal guardian in his/her native language or other mode of communication; that the parent/legal guardian understands the content of the notice; and that there is written evidence that all due process procedures, pursuant to law and/or regulation, have been met.

Adopted November 1, 2016
Revised and Adopted May 1, 2018

4321.9-R Declassification of Students with Disabilities Regulation

Reevaluation Prior to Declassification

Only the Committee on Special Education (CSE) is authorized to declassify a student. Prior to recommending declassification, the Committee shall re-evaluate the student.

Prior Notice and Consent to Conduct a Reevaluation

Prior to such reevaluation, the Committee on Special Education shall provide, to the Parent or student, as applicable, prior notice, that a re-evaluation is being sought for the purpose of considering declassification and shall request input and written consent to conduct any formal assessments or tests recommended.
If the initial request for consent is unsuccessful, alternate measures to obtain consent shall be taken and documented. If reasonable documented attempts have been made to obtain consent and no response is received from the parent or student as applicable, the Committee shall re-evaluate the student, upon notice without written consent.

Determination of the Extent of Reevaluation

In order to determine the extent of re-evaluation necessary, appropriate school personnel, members of the Committee on Special Education, with input from the parents and the student, as applicable and other qualified professionals, shall consider and review the existing evaluation data on the student, including evaluations provided by the parents or guardians, current class assessments, observations by teachers, and reports by related service providers and other professionals. This review shall not constitute a Committee on Special Education meeting. On the basis of this review, the Team may conclude that no further data is needed. With proper documentation of notification to the Parents, or student, as applicable, that they have the right to request additional testing and upon their written confirmation that they do not seek further assessment, a meeting of the Committee on Special Education shall be scheduled to consider whether, based on the current reevaluation, to recommend declassification.

Consideration of Regular Education Support and Declassification Support Services

In conducting its review, the Committee on Special Education shall consider and recommend any regular education supports, which may assist the student and shall consider the need for declassification support services. If recommended, the district will specify those services recommended, including the projected initiation date and duration for such services. Declassification services shall be provided for no more than one year following the student’s declassification date.

Consider Need for Continuation of Testing Accommodations and Second Language Waiver

In addition, the Committee on Special Education shall consider the need to continue the student’s testing accommodations and, if recommended, shall ensure that such information is transmitted to appropriate school personnel to ensure that such accommodations are made available to the student. The Committee shall also determine, where applicable, whether to extend the second language waiver.

Consider Need for Referral to the §504 Committee

When the Committee on Special Education declassifies a student under the definition of a student with a disability set forth in Part 200 of the Commissioner’s Regulations, where the student continues to have a physical or mental impairment that requires accommodations and/or modifications that would not be available through the general curriculum, the committee shall consider need for referral to the §504 Accommodation Plan.

Adopted November 1, 2016
Reviewed May 1, 2018

4324 Programs for Pregnant Students

The Board of Education recognizes the need to provide pregnant students with a flexible school program. The building principal shall work with a social worker and counselor along with the student and her parents/guardians in a cooperative effort to meet individual student’s special needs. Students are encouraged to continue in their scheduled program of study.

Adopted February 27, 2001
Adopted November 20, 2012
Revised, Adopted June 14, 2016

4325 Academic Intervention Services (Replaces Remedial Instruction)

The Board of Education is committed to providing academic intervention services to students at risk of not meeting the state learning standards. Such services may include additional instruction supplementing the instruction provided in the general curriculum and/or student support services such as guidance, counseling, attendance and study skills needed to support improved academic performance.
Eligibility for academic intervention services will be determined based on a student’s performance on state assessment exams and/or in accordance with the uniformly applied district-developed district-adopted procedures. Eligible students will receive services consistent with law and regulations which shall commence no later than the beginning of the semester following a determination that a student is eligible for such services.
Where applicable a response to intervention model will be used in lieu of Academic Intervention Services (AIS). Such RtI will comply with all state and district requirements for AIS.

Parental Notification and Involvement

Notification on Commencement of Services:The Building Principal or designee will notify the parents of a student determined to be in need of academic intervention services, in writing, upon the commencement of such services. Such notification will include:

  • A summary of the academic intervention services to be provided;
  • The reason the student needs such services; and
  • Anticipated duration of intervention provided.

Notification on Ending of Services. The Principal will notify the parent in writing when academic intervention services are no longer needed. Such notification will include:

  • The criteria for ending services; and
  • The performance levels obtained on district selected assessments, if appropriate.

In addition, the district/schools will provide for ongoing communication with parents which must include opportunities to consult with teachers and other professional staff, regular reports on the student’s progress and information on ways to monitor and work with educators to improve the student’s performance.
All parental notifications and communications will be done in English and translated, when appropriate, into the native language or mode of communication of the parents.

Description and Review of Academic Intervention Services

The Superintendent of Schools or designee, in consultation with each Building Principal, shall maintain a description of academic intervention and/or student support services for each school. This description will include any variations in services in schools within the district and will specifically delineate:

  • the district-wide procedures used to determine the need for academic intervention services;
  • the academic intervention instructional and/or support services to be provided;
  • whether instructional services and/or support services are offered during the regular school day or during an extended school day or year; and
  • the criteria for ending services, including, if appropriate, performance levels that students must obtain on district-selected assessments.

Beginning July 1, 2002 and every two years thereafter, the Superintendent shall review and revise the description of academic intervention services based on student performance results and present such revised description to the Board for approval.

Adopted January 8, 2013
Revised, Adopted January 31, 2017

4326 English Language Learner Proficiency Instruction

The Board of Education is committed to supporting students who speak another home language. The district will make every effort to support English Language Learner (ELL) students as they work to acquire English and learn the content of the curriculum.
Pursuant to this policy and the regulations of the Commissioner of Education, the Superintendent of Schools is directed to develop appropriate administrative regulations to ensure that ELL students are:

1. carefully and thoughtfully screened with the New York State Identification Test for English Language Learners (NYSITELL) exam for limited English proficiency, in accordance with Part 117 of the Commissioner’s Regulations. Those students who according to their scores are identified as ELL will be annually evaluated by the NYSESLAT Exam (listening, speaking, reading and writing). Included in the evaluation shall be each student’s performance in content areas to measure academic progress via report card;
2. assured of access to appropriate instructional and support services, including tiered support for ELA and math programs; and
3. assured of having equal opportunities to participate in all school programs and extracurricular activities.

The Superintendent shall be responsible for ensuring that the Commissioner is provided with all information required under the Commissioner’s Regulations and that the district provides appropriate school-related information to the parents of ELL students in English, or when necessary, in the language they understand. In addition, the Superintendent shall ensure that all teachers employed for any ESL program are properly certified in accordance with the Commissioner’s Regulations.

Adopted March 27, 2001
Revised, Adopted January 8, 2013
Revised, Adopted May 26, 2015

4326-R English Language Learner Proficiency Instruction Regulation

In attempting to ensure that students who are ELL receive appropriate schooling in English and curriculum areas, the school district shall:

1. in accordance with Part 117 of the Commissioner’s Regulations, thoughtfully screen every new entrant to the schools to determine whether they are possibly ELL* in accordance with subdivision 2-a of section 3204 of the Education Law. It will also be determined through NYSITELL screenings when the student comes from a home where a language other than English is spoken as determined by the results of a home language questionnaire, an informal interview in English by the registrar, and NYSESLAT exam;
2. ensure that students diagnostically determined to be ELL are annually evaluated. Such evaluation will include evaluation of each student’s performance in content areas to measure the student’s progress via assessments in ESL and content areas;
3. ensure that all ELL students have access to appropriate instructional and support services, including guidance programs;
4. ensure that all ELL students have equal opportunities to participate in all school programs and extracurricular activities;
5. annually provide the Commissioner with the following documents, in the form and by the dates prescribed by the Commissioner:
a. a copy of the Board of Education’s policy;
b. a report by building of students initially identified and annually evaluated as being ELL in the preceding school year; CR Part 154 report
c. a report by building of the number of teachers and support personnel providing services to ELL students; CR Part 154 report
d. a description by building of the curricular and extracurricular services provided to ELL students; CR Part 154 report and
e. results of the annual evaluation of ELL students, including test data and any additional data required by the Commissioner via SchoolTool and Performance/Plus tracker.

The district will provide an orientation program annually for ELL parents and will meet individually with ELL parents at least once a year, in addition to regular parent/teacher meetings.
In addition, the Superintendent shall ensure that all teachers employed in any Bilingual and/or English as a New Language program are properly certified in accordance with the Commissioner’s Regulations, and that all staff receive appropriate professional development on ELL students.
* A student who by reason of international birth or ancestry, speaks a language other than English, and scores at or below the fortieth percentile on the NYSITELL exam approved by the Commissioner, is to be classified as “ELL”

In order to receive state funds for the education of ELL students, the district shall submit to the State Education Department by September 1 of each year a comprehensive plan to meet the educational needs of such students via CR Part 154.

Such plan shall comply with State Education Department guidelines and may include:

1. the criteria used to place ELL students in appropriate bilingual or ESL programs;
2. a proposed budget for the operation of the state-aided program;
3. a description of the nature and scope of the bilingual and/or ESL services currently available to ELL students;
4. an evaluation plan in the format specified by the State Education Department;
5. a description of procedures for the program’s management, including: staff selection, parental notification, coordination of funds, training, and program planning;
6. an assurance that all regulations and laws governing programs for ELL students will be followed;
7. a description of the support services provided to ELL students;
8. a description of the transitional services provided to ELL students; and
9. a description of the in-service training plan for all school personnel.

English as a Second Language Instruction

1. Instruction which emphasizes listening, speaking, reading, writing, and communicating skills in English; and course content area instruction using ESL methods.

Additional Concerns

The district reserves the right to contract with a Board of Cooperative Educational Services (BOCES) or another school district to provide bilingual and/or ESL programs.

Support Services

The district shall provide appropriate support services to students who are participating in ESL programs in order for such students to achieve and maintain a satisfactory level of academic performance. Such services may include, but shall not be limited to, individual counseling, group counseling, home visits, and parental counseling. If appropriate, such services shall be provided in the first language of the students and the student’s parent(s)/ guardian(s).

Transitional Services

The district shall ensure a transition for former ELL students who are transferring from an ESL program into an English mainstream program. Transitional services shall be provided for the first two years after such students are placed in the English mainstream instructional program.

Professional Development

The district shall provide professional development to all personnel providing instruction or other services to ELL students in order to enhance staff appreciation for such students’ home languages and cultures, and the ability to provide appropriate instructional and support services.

Services to ELL Students with Disabilities

If a student’s score on an English language assessment instrument approved by the Commissioner is the result of a disability, the student shall be provided special education programs and services in accordance with the individualized education program (IEP) developed for such student(s). Such students shall also be eligible for all services described above, if such services are recommended in his/her IEP.
Appropriate district personnel shall meet at least twice a year with all parents of ELL students to discuss the students’ needs and progress.

Reviewed March 13, 2001
Revised, Reviewed February 12, 2013
Revised, Reviewed May 26, 2015

4327 Homebound Instruction

Homebound instruction is a service provided to students who are unable to attend school due to medical, emotional or disciplinary problems. Secondary students receive instruction for two hours per day and elementary students receive one hour per day. Students receive credit for their work while on homebound instruction.

The school district has a legal and professional obligation to ensure that instruction is provided to homebound students and that such instruction is closely coordinated with that provided in the classroom.

The district makes provisions for homebound instruction upon referral from a School Physician or a designee of the Superintendent following the guidelines established by the Superintendent of Schools for placing a student on homebound instruction.

It is the responsibility of the district to obtain teachers for eligible homebound students. The qualifications of teachers providing homebound instruction shall be as follows:

1. for instruction at the elementary level, at least common branch certification under the rules and regulations of the Commissioner of Education; and
2. for instruction at the secondary level, certification in the subject area being taught.

An hourly rate of compensation for teachers providing homebound instruction shall be determined annually by the Board.

The school district shall maintain such records and periodic evaluations as are necessary to provide adequate assessment and appraisal of the progress made during the period of home instruction and readiness to return to a classroom program.

Homebound instruction will strive to keep the student on pace to rejoin his/her class and maintain academic progress. The Board recognizes that students who are out of school for extended periods of time are at risk of falling behind academically and/or losing connection to the school community. The Board directs the administration to evaluate periodically whether homebound instruction is effective in keeping students on track to graduate, and if not, to take steps to improve instruction and implement approaches and/or offer services that support the transition back to school.

Adopted April 7, 1998
Revised and Adopted October 22, 2013
Revised, Adopted June 17, 2014

4329 Implementation of School-Wide Approaches and Pre-Referral Intervention

In accordance with the IDEA and Part 200 of the Commissioner’s Regulations, the District has implemented a plan and policy to establish pre-referral interventions to remediate a student’s educational performance to avoid, wherever possible, inappropriate referrals to the Committee on Special Education (CSE).
In keeping with this policy, it is the responsibility of the building Instructional Support Team (IST) or School Based Support Team (SBST) to investigate all possible avenues of general education support services to enable students to advance academically.
Pre-referral support services may include, but are not limited to,

  • improvement services
  • evaluations
  • individual and group counseling
  • consultation with staff and families
  • curriculum and instructional modifications
  • building level educational support
  • Academic Intervention Services (AIS)
  • Bi-lingual and/or English as a Second Language (ESL) services.
  • Training for faculty and staff to support above services for students.

These services may be provided before, during or after the school day, or in the summer. They must be afforded to all students who do not meet the minimum designated standards on State assessments and to Limited English Proficient (LEP) students who do not achieve the annual Commissioner’s Regulations at 8 N.Y.C.R.R.154 performance standards. Consistent with the District AIS policy, supplemental instruction in English, Language Arts, Math, Social Studies, and Science as well as support services to address barriers to student progress such as attendance, discipline, health, family nutrition, and transient issues will be afforded to students who score a level two or below on State assessments or to students recommended by the IST or SBST.
The District shall provide diagnostic screening for any student who scores below level two on either the third grade English language arts or mathematics assessment for New York State elementary schools.
Diagnostic screening for such students may include, but not be limited to:

1. Vision and hearing screenings to determine whether a vision or hearing impairment is impacting the student’s ability to learn; and
2. A review of the student’s instructional programs in reading and mathematics to ensure that explicit and research validated instruction is being provided in both areas.

Student progress shall be monitored periodically through progress monitoring and/or on-going assessments of the student’s reading and mathematic abilities and skills. If the student is determined to be making sub-standard progress in such areas of study, instruction shall be provided that is tailored to meet the student’s individual needs with increasingly intensive levels of targeted intervention and instruction.
Parents shall be notified regarding information about the performance data that will be collected and the general education services provided; strategies for increasing the student’s rate of learning; and the parents’ right to request an evaluation by the CSE to determine whether the student has a disability.

All school-wide approaches to provide remediation activities to students who are at risk of not meeting graduation requirements will be considered prior to making referrals to the CSE. These school-wide approaches shall serve as pre-referral interventions prior to consideration of CSE support services. One of the school-wide approaches the District may use to remediate a student’s performance prior to referral for special education is a response to intervention (RtI) process. This scientific, research-based instruction will be implemented according to Section 100.2(ii) of the Commissioner’s Regulations.
The referral form to the CSE shall enumerate all pre-referral interventions made available to the student to enable the CSE to determine which of these interventions have been tried or the reason why no such attempts have been made. Each referral shall be reviewed to determine its appropriateness and whether pre-referral interventions have been adequately utilized and if further interventions are deemed necessary.
If a building administrator initiates a referral to the CSE, it shall be forwarded to the CSE Chairperson immediately.
This policy shall remain in full force and effect unless modified by the Board of Education.

Adopted March 7, 2017

4510.2 Internet and Computer Acceptable Use Policy (AUP)

The Board of Education is committed to the optimization of teaching and student learning. The Board considers computers to be a valuable tool for education, and encourages the use of computers and computer-related technology in District classrooms. The Board encourages computer use as an integral part of the curriculum, and the Board believes that the use of software applications, online databases, online course materials, appropriate interactive curriculum based web applications, web and video-conferencing, and internet research tools significantly enhance a student’s educational experience.

The Board directs the Superintendent of Schools to appoint Coordinators for Technology to coordinate the use of district computer resources. The Superintendent, working with the Assistant Superintendent for Instruction and Technology Leadership Council, in conjunction with the Technology Liaison Committee, building administrators, and technical staff will prepare and submit for the Board’s approval a comprehensive multi-year technology plan which shall be revised and updated annually. The Superintendent or designee shall ensure the purchase and implementation of a technology protection measure that will block or filter Internet access by:

  • Adults to depictions that are obscene, and
  • Minors to depictions that are obscene or harmful to minors as defined in the Children’s Internet Protection Act (CIPA).

In line with the District’s mission and goals, the Board extends to the District’s staff and students the privilege of using computers to access the Internet to help perform academic work, to explore educational topics, to conduct research projects and to contact others in the educational world.

Appropriate disciplinary action, including potential restriction of technology in school, will be taken in the event of violations of this policy.

The District takes no responsibility for losses sustained by staff or students as a result of system failure. Also, information stored on the District Computer System (DCS) is not private and may be reviewed or traced by authorized personnel. The Board directs the Superintendent to develop appropriate rules and regulations for use of computers and related technologies in District schools.

The Board also directs the Superintendent to annually publicize this policy and regulations to staff, students and parents.

Cross-ref: 5310, Student Discipline

Adopted October 20, 1998
(Revised by Technology Liaison Committee – November 2005)
Revised and Adopted January 10, 2006
Adopted April 8, 2008
(Revised by Technology Liaison Committee -February 2011)
Revised, Adopted June 6, 2011
Revised, Adopted April 12, 2016
Revised and Adopted May 28, 2019

4510.2-R Internet and Computer Acceptable Use Policy (AUP) Regulation

Staff and students are expected to follow these guidelines when using computers at school:

1. School computers may only be used to help perform academic work, to explore educational topics, to conduct research projects, or to contact others for educational purposes.

2. When using school computers, students and staff will be expected to take reasonable care of school equipment and materials.

3. Students and staff are expected to act in a responsible, ethical and legal manner while using school computers and the Internet. They should be polite to other Internet users, and they should act within state and federal laws.

4. Users are responsible for the use of their network account and should safeguard their account from being accessed by others.

5. No personal purchases may be made through a computer owned by the school, or through one of the school’s Internet accounts.

6. Students will be supervised when they access the Internet. The schools will take every reasonable precaution to ensure that a student will not access objectionable materials.

Students will be instructed to notify a teacher if they accidentally access something objectionable from a school computer and should do so immediately.

7. Students will be instructed that they should not provide personal information or agree to meet with strangers that they meet on the Internet. Students should notify a teacher if someone on the Internet requests personal information or asks to meet with them.

8. In accordance with the District’s “opt-out” policy for the use of student directory information, Web page documents on the Internet may include a student’s full name, grade level, photograph, art work, academic interest, participation in officially recognized activities and sports, terms of school attendance and graduation, awards received, etc. unless the district has been notified in writing not to publish this information in any given school year.

9. Information stored on school computer equipment is not private and may be viewed or traced by authorized personnel.

Staff and students must understand that if they violate these rules, their computer privileges may be suspended. Violations of these guidelines will result in a referral to school administration for further disciplinary action.

(Reviewed November 2005 by the Technology Liaison Committee)
Reviewed December 13, 2005
(Revised by Technology Liaison Committee -February 2011)
Reviewed June 6, 2011
Revised and Reviewed December 10, 2013
Reviewed April 12, 2016
Revised and Adopted May 28, 2019

4510.2-R.1 Computer Network and Technology Equipment (AUP) Regulation

Staff and students are expected to follow these guidelines when using computers at school:

District Computer System (DCS) includes computers, wired and wireless networks, cabling, servers, printers, and all other technology related devices and systems owned by the District.

1. District Computer System (DCS) is for curricular and school use. Commercial use is prohibited. Personal use should be limited.

2. Use of the DCS which violates any aspect of School District Policies, the Student Discipline Code of Conduct, and any Federal, State or Local laws or regulations is strictly prohibited.

3. No personal software may be downloaded or installed anywhere on the DCS without first having been reviewed by a technician or authorized via the software purchase process.

This includes but is not limited to software packages, program, plug-ins, updates, toolbars, applets, drivers, Apps, extensions.

4. No personal computers and/or equipment or peripherals may be attached to or configured on the DCS. However, students and/or staff may connect USB flash drives or other removable storage devices to district computers to transfer assignments or school related data to district computers when necessary. These data files must be scanned by the district’s antivirus software. Personal devices with wireless capability may access the

Internet through the district’s wireless network for professional purposes only. This will be accomplished through the district’s wireless guest/Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) access that will allow Internet access but will prevent network access. Technicians will be responsible for configuring devices with browser proxy settings and for setting up passwords. Personal devices for professional staff will include laptops, tablets or other approved interactive technologies. Personal cell/smart phones may be granted access to guest/BYOD wireless networks upon request and when used for professional purposes.

5. Do not alter or change the settings or system configurations of the DCS hardware or

software in any way. Exceptions to this may include User Accessibility Settings and default printer designation. Do not remove/move, unplug, alter or add equipment or software to the DCS. No damaging, disabling or otherwise interfering with the operation of any part of the

DCS through physical action or by electronic means. These regulations apply to preconfigured system setups and stationary system setups. However, district laptops that are used for instructional use may be connected to presentation systems or other types of hardware owned by the district. Faculty and staff should be trained by the district’s technical staff before using these special setups.

6. Do not intentionally bypass the security of the DCS for viewing inappropriate Internet sites. Do not attempt to gain access to restricted areas of the DCS, or go beyond authorized access by entering another person’s password or accessing another person’s files or e-mail.

No changing, copying, renaming, deleting, reading or otherwise accessing files or software not created by the owner of the file.

7. Do not violate copyright laws. Information and materials obtained from the DCS and used in work must be properly cited.

8. Do not disclose an individual password to others or use others’ passwords. Do not attempt to gain unauthorized access to any level of the DCS by attempting to log in through another person’s account, or use computer accounts, access codes or network identification other than those assigned to the user.

9. Do not waste school resources by printing excessively or consuming limited hard drive space or network drive space or bandwidth capacity anywhere on the DCS.

10. Do not download software or programs from the Internet to the DCS.

11. Do not create or willfully disseminate computer viruses. Staff and students should be sensitive to the ease of spreading viruses and should take steps to ensure that disks and files are virus free.

12. Do not violate licensing agreements, including the downloading or exchanging of pirated software or copying software to or from any part of the DCS.

13. Information stored on the DCS is not private and may be viewed or traced by authorized personnel.

14. Students will not use district equipment or networks to engage in cyberbullying or cyberstalking. Students will not use digital cameras to take or post inappropriate pictures.

15. In the course of repairs, DCS computers may be re-imaged at any time. Therefore, it is the responsibility of the user to maintain a regular backup of his/her data in a location not on the DCS local computer. Data should be stored on his/her network server where it is backed up on a nightly basis.

Staff and students must understand that if they violate these rules, their computer privileges maybe suspended. Violations of these regulations will result in a referral to school administration for further disciplinary action.

(Reviewed November 2005 by the Technology Liaison Committee)
Reviewed December 13, 2005
(Revised by the Technology Liaison Committee – February 2011)
Revised June 6, 2011
Revised June 18, 2013
Revised and Reviewed December 10, 2013
Revised and Adopted May 28, 2019

4510.2-R.2 Computer Acceptable Use Policy (AUP) Web Regulations

Internet access in the Guilderland Central School District provides an opportunity for students, staff, parents, and community to share information in a very unique way. The District’s Web site provides information to the community about school curriculum, instruction, school-related activities, and other general information relating to our schools and to our District’s mission. Internet access for the creation of Web pages is provided by the District Web Team through Capital Region BOCES. Publishers and creators of Web pages need to familiarize themselves with and adhere to the following regulations and responsibilities. Failure to follow these regulations may result in the loss of authoring privileges or other more serious disciplinary measures.

A. District Web Team – The Superintendent and/or his/her designee shall approve Internet access for the creation of Web pages by the Guilderland Central School District Web Team. The team will work with the District’s Chief Technology Specialist, the District’s Communications Office and Capital Region BOCES and will be comprised of at least one representative from the Elementary Schools, Middle School, High School, District Office.
B. District and School Web Pages – The District’s Communications Office, or an identified designee, will develop and post content for all district-level and school Web pages. Content will be directly related to the school district, its students, or its educational programming.
• District staff and school community members are encouraged to submit Web content (story ideas, photos, etc.) to the District’s Communications Office. Submitted content may be edited for appropriateness and/or space limitations.
• Content not directly related to the school district, its students, or its educational programming will not be published.
C. Teacher Web Pages – Any teachers that currently have web pages linked to building sites may continue to publish information on their pages, as long as the information is kept current.
• Teachers that wish to have Web pages hosted on independent sites linked to building sites must submit an application form for site approval to the District’s Communications Office, as obtained from the Web team member in their respective building or in the “Staff Resources” section of the district Web site.
• Teachers that wish to publish new educational Web pages within the district web site are encouraged to do so, but must first sign up for and attend at least one guided work session for teacher Web pages to become familiar with the Web editing program Microsoft Expression Web, and submit to a peer review of their page(s) Teachers must also submit a NERIC user authorization request form, which may be obtained through the web team member at each individual school building or in the “Staff Resources” section of the district Web site. Upon user request approval, a unique user name and password for web publishing will be assigned to each teacher applicant through Capital Region BOCES. The Communications Office will not retain individual login credentials. If at any time the user loses his or her password, they must request it directly from NERIC at helpdesk@gw.neric.org or 518-862-5400.

• Teachers are responsible for the content on their individual Web pages. At the bottom of each published teacher page, it is required that there be a link to the email address of the person maintaining the page with this terminology: “This page is maintained according to Guilderland Central School District Web publishing guidelines by teacher e mail address on behalf of the Guilderland Central School District.”

D. Student Web Pages – Students may create a Web site as part of a class activity through an outside service provider. Unfortunately, the District will not be able to provide students with access to the District Web site. Material presented on a student class activity web site must meet the educational objectives of the class activity. It will not be considered a violation of a student’s free speech to require removal of material that does not meet the educational objectives or that is in violation of the Acceptable Use Policy.
• Student web pages must include the following disclaimer: “This is a student Web page. Opinions expressed on this page shall not be attributed to the District.”

• Students will not be allowed to submit a user authorization request form and will not be given a user name or password by Capital Region BOCES to publish their student class activity web site.
• Should a classroom teacher wish to publish a class activity web site for his/her students, the teacher must submit a user authorization request form to the District’s Communications Office. (See item B – Teacher Web Pages) The teacher will then be responsible for all content on the student site.
• Under no circumstances should teachers give students access to their user names or passwords.
• Student Web pages will be removed at the end of the school year unless other arrangements have been made.

E. Extracurricular Organization Web Pages – With the approval of the building principal, extracurricular school organizations may establish Web pages.
• School organizations that wish to have new web pages linked to building sites must follow the same process as outlined above for teacher Web pages.
• Material presented on the organization Web page must relate specifically to organization activities.

They must display the following disclaimer: “This is a student/school extracurricular organization Web page. Opinions expressed on this page shall not be attributed to the District.”

F. PTA Web Pages – With the approval of the building principal, school PTA organizations may establish Web pages.
• PTA groups are encouraged to create a Web page through an external service provider. The District will house a basic page for the site, including officers, meeting dates, and a calendar of upcoming events, as well as a link to the PTA’s more in-depth Web page, if established.
• PTA groups that wish to have new Web pages linked to building sites must submit an application form for site approval to the District’s Communications Office, as obtained from the Web team member in their respective building.
G. Web Page Design – The standards defined in this document along with the Acceptable Use Policy provisions will govern material placed on the Web site.
1. Content Standards – Building and District Administrators or their designees are responsible for Web page approval. Any individual or group who wants to author a new Web page within the district Web site must sign up for and attend a guided work session. The District reserves the right to edit content or remove hyperlinks to information that does not adhere to school district policies or the web page publishing standards contained in this document.
2. Subject Matter – All subject matter should relate to curriculum, instruction, school-authorized activities, or general information that is appropriate and of interest to others. Neither staff nor students may publish personal home pages as part of the District Web site. Home pages may not be published for individuals or organizations not directly affiliated with the District. Staff or student work may be published only as it relates to a class project, course, or other school-related activity. The author of each individual page is responsible for the subject matter contained within that page.
3. Quality – All Web page work must be free of spelling and grammatical errors. Documents may not contain objectionable material or link directly to objectionable sites. Objectionable material is defined as material that does not meet the standards for instructional resources specified by District policies. Regarding the question of quality, style, or content, the judgment of the District Web Team and Building or District Administrators will prevail. All authorized Web publishers will have access to Web page templates, as created by Capital Region BOCES, and are expected to use these general templates to facilitate a consistent and easy-to-follow Web site design for all users.

4. Ownership and Retention – All Web pages on the District’s web site are property of the School District. Web pages will be deleted when teachers or courses are no longer associated with the District unless prior arrangements have been made with the District Web Team.
5. Student Safeguards – In accordance with the District’s “opt-out” policy for the use of student directory information, Web page documents may include a student’s full name, grade level, photograph, art work, academic interest, participation in officially recognized activities and sports, terms of school attendance and graduation, awards received, etc. unless the district has been notified in writing not to publish this information by September 15 in any given school year. If received, “opt-out” letters are kept on file by both the school building principal and the District’s Communications Office. Documents may not include student phone numbers, addresses, or names of family members and friends. Published e-mail addresses are restricted to staff members or to a general address where arriving e-mail is checked by a staff member.
6. Technical Standards and Consistency

Each Web page that is added to the District Web site must contain certain design standards to maintain general consistency throughout the site:
• At the bottom of each primary home page, there must be a link to the e-mail address of the person responsible for maintaining the page with this terminology: “This page is maintained according to Guilderland Central School District web publishing guidelines by page author’s e-mail address on behalf of the Guilderland Central School District.” It will be that person’s responsibility to keep the web page(s) current.
• On each page, there must be a link that returns the user to the district home page. A template will be provided for all users that publish internally to the district web site.
• Users should only work on the pages within the sub-web and folders in which they have received authorization.
• Anyone who has earned the right to publish to the web site must maintain a backup copy of his or her web pages.
• All web pages must undergo a peer review and be submitted to the District’s Communications Office for review and approval prior to their initial placement on the Web server. Once a page is approved and published, the page author is responsible for all subsequent changes in accordance with the district’s Web regulations.

• Publishers must be careful when creating Web pages with extensive graphics. Such files require extensive download time, are frustrating for visitors, and slow down the Web server.
• Any teacher who publishes a Web page, for classroom instruction or as part of a curriculum project, will edit and test the page(s) for accuracy of links. They should also verify that the page(s) conform to the standards outlined in this document.
• Web pages may not contain links to incomplete pages. If additional pages are anticipated, but not in final form, the text that will provide such a link should be included. However, the actual link should not be made until the final page is actually in place on the Web server.
• All Web pages must be given names that clearly identify them. Any graphics, sounds, or video used on Web pages will conform to a standardized format established by the Web team. All images must adhere to federal accessibility guidelines.
• Links to external sites outside of the www.guilderlandschools.org domain must be formatted to open in a new window and adhere to federal accessibility guidelines.
• Web pages may not contain any student e-mail address links.
• Web pages will not contain copyrighted or trademarked material belonging to others unless written permission has been obtained from the owner.
• Web page links may not include entities whose primary purpose is commercial (sales sites) or political advertising.

Updates to the Web Regulations

Given the rapid change in technological advances, some of the standards outlined in this document may require changes in the near future. Members of the District Web Team invite and encourage feedback on these regulations so that they can continue to be improved. The Guilderland Central School District Web Regulations will be reviewed and updated on an annual basis or more frequently if required.

Revised March 14, 2011
Revised June 6, 2011

4511 Textbook and/or Trade Book Selection and Adoption

TEXTBOOK AND/OR TRADE BOOK SELECTION AND ADOPTION

The Board of Education is responsible for the selection and designation of all textbooks and/or trade books to be used in the District’s schools. The Superintendent of Schools shall recommend textbooks and trade books to be used in the schools for the Board’s consideration.

The Superintendent or designee shall maintain a list of approved books.

The Superintendent shall establish procedures for the selection and recommendation of textbooks and trade books and a method for selecting staff members who shall serve in the selection and recommendation process.

The following criteria are to be considered in the selection of textbooks:

  1. a reasonable balance of viewpoints regarding controversial issues should be presented;
  2. high quality format in respect to typography, arrangement of materials or pages, cover design, size and margins;
  3. objectivity and impartiality in treatment of subject matter and freedom from bias and prejudice;
  4. qualifications of the author(s) on the subject;
  5. adaptability and alignment to existing instructional program;
  6. textbook series should meet grade-to-grade requirements. They should contain supplementary aids to learning, when desirable and necessary, such as a table of contents, introduction, study activities, exercises, questions, problems, selected references, digital resources, bibliography, index glossary and appendices;
  7. grade level appropriateness of content, vocabulary, sentence structure, and organization;
  8. texts should include appropriate illustrative materials–pictures, maps, charts, graphs, diagrams, etc., which clarify the text and enrich the content;
  9. materials should fairly represent the many ethnic and cultural groups and their contribution to American heritage;
  10. accuracy of the information presented;
  11. sufficient scope to meet the requirements of the curriculum as developed locally and approved by the State Education Department; and
  12. textbook or material should have been copyrighted within the past five years, whenever possible.

The following criteria are to be considered in the selection of literary works for classroom use in teaching, as well as the assignment of such works to particular grade levels:

  1. capacity of a work to capture student interest and promote critical thinking;
  2. thematic treatment which allows for the development of sound and healthy values for students;
  3. use of compositional style(s) which contribute to the reader’s critical and appreciative understanding of the work;
  4. sophisticated use of literary devices (i.e., metaphor, point of view, tone) to further student understanding of written concepts;
  5. levels of student maturity and experience necessary for empathetic reading of literature;
  6. intrinsic qualities that establish a work as a part of the literary heritage; and
  7. variety to avoid duplication of theme, plot, setting, etc., unless such duplication affords opportunities for comparison and contrast or serves to reinforce understanding.

Cross-ref: 1420, Complaints about Curricula or Instructional MaterialsRef: Education Law §§701 et seq.; 1711; 2508; 2566

Adopted January 26, 1999
Revised and Adopted September 10, 2013
Revised and Adopted May 28, 2019

4512 Selection and Use of Nonprint Materials for the Classroom

Nonprint media – including streaming, broadcast, cable, satellite, and recorded video, film, CDROM, DVD and Internet, music video, videotape, film, radio, compact disk, and digital hypertext for personal computers are primary sources of information and recreation, as well as emotional and artistic experiences for Americans. Inasmuch as today’s children come to school from homes and communities which provide them with wide exposure to nonprint media, it is crucial that teachers draw upon this background both to recognize their students’ knowledge and to develop their students’ critical thinking about nonprint media. Students must develop the knowledge, critical awareness, and technical skills to become participants in, creators of, thinkers about, and commentators on the nonprint media that are so pervasive an influence on their lives.

This means that teachers often must use materials that, while potentially controversial, need to be examined so students can confront the stereotyping, propagandizing, and editorial gatekeeping so prevalent in the media. These materials are never selected to expose students to gratuitous violence or sexuality. Study of such materials allows students to discover that nonprint media works are constructions of reality, have commercial, ideological, and value-laden messages, and employ aesthetic forms.

PURPOSE

We affirm that the purpose of including these materials is:

  •  to support the development of students’ print literacy and appreciation of print literature by building on students’ formally and informally acquired media literacy skills;
  •  to study artistic and informative works in their own right;
  • to deepen students’ abilities to understand and to critically analyze the powerful nonprint
  • media sources of their daily information and entertainment.

PRINCIPLES

The underlying principles in forming this policy are:

  1. Students’ freedom of speech includes freedom of expression through studying, discussing, and producing nonprint media. Selected media must comply with federal copyright law and the Board of Educations’ copyright policy.
  2. Education at all levels must reflect the diversity and debate inherent in a democratic society. Well-schooled citizens are prepared to consider choices, to raise questions, to consider a spectrum of contingencies, and to develop skills and attitudes of critical analysis. This kind of education must begin early. All classrooms, therefore, need to include a variety of print and nonprint materials for students’ discovery, information seeking, and decision-making.
  3. Media arts can inspire and enlarge students’ ways of perceiving and being in the world.
  4. In a global society, nonprint media can expand students’ understanding of cultures beyond their own. Students must develop their abilities to analyze the ways the mainstream media shape their perceptions of other cultures and encounter a variety of cultural products and perspectives.
  5. Language is the means by which teachers and students construct, examine, and evaluate print and nonprint texts for practical, intellectual, and aesthetic purposes. Therefore, the classroom is an appropriate setting for the technical, aesthetic, and intellectual study of nonprint media.
  6. Selection of nonprint materials for study in schools should be the province of teachers and librarians; the selection should be based on sound educational criteria outlined in the district and school instructional goals and curriculum statements.
  7. The rating system of the Motion Picture Association of America should not be used as the primary guide in selecting films or videotapes for instruction in schools. MPAA ratings are made by the film industry expressly without regard for artistic or educational value.
  8. Intellectual development requires that students learn to dispute civilly. The teacher’s role in discussion of both print and nonprint materials is one of mediating between and among conflicting viewpoints and perceptions. Leading a class discussion of controversial topics or works does not imply endorsement or approval of views or values suggested by those works or expressed by students in discussion of those works.
  9. Research on styles of learning supports the wide use of nonprint materials in the curriculum – including opportunities for analysis and production — especially for students who find visual or auditory works the primary means for learning and personal expression.
  10. As with reading literature, the students’ prior knowledge shapes their perception of a media text; each student thus “sees” a different work. There needs to be class time for expression and discussion of a range of response to the nonprint media work
  11. When possible, artistic nonprint works should be offered to students in their entirety and in the form in which they were intended by their creatorsThe responsibility for media arts literacy does not rest with the individual teacher alone.

      If students are to be taught to respond intelligently to the nonprint media, the schoolsand communities must commit a share of their resources to this goal.

      RESPONSIBILITIES

      Responsibilities of teachers in dealing with nonprint materials include;

      1. Working with school media resource centers, librarians, and teacher colleagues to select appropriate nonprint materials for the curriculum from a wide variety of outlets and viewpoints to encourage students’ intellectual and aesthetic development.
      2. Previewing nonprint materials and providing rationales for their use.
      3. Including sufficient introductory preparation in classes dealing with material for which controversy might be expected, including careful explanation of the overriding educational purpose; scheduling time for substantial follow-up activity for students to discuss and clarify their initial responses to a media work in relation to the curricular focus; and promoting inquiry-based classroom strategies.
      4. Helping students to understand the interrelationship of nonprint and print materials, and to study the features of both.
      1. Developing techniques of leading respectful discussion and debate and resolving conflict in the classroom.
      1. Providing a cultural, historical, economic, and social context for nonprint media whenever possible.
      1. Following copyright law as it applies to nonprint media and current fair-use laws of broadcast programming for educational purposes.

      SELECTION CRITERIA

      1. When nonprint materials are used, they will connect clearly and relevantly to the course, enhancing or reinforcing student understanding of aspects of course content.
      2. Further, the nonprint materials will meet one or more of the following criteria
      1. Makes colex concepts more accessible to students than other available materials do.
      2. Generates thought and discussion regarding historical, sociological, or artistic perspectives.
      3. Illustrates techniques of media manipulation.

      3. Any nonprint media used will not contain excessive or gratuitous violence or sexual explicitness inappropriate to the age level of the student.

      PROCEDURES

      Whenever a full-length film or video program or a substantial portion of a film is used, the following procedures will apply.

      Selection Process:

      Using the Selection Criteria, teachers will select film and video programs in collaboration with their colleagues including the teacher leader, supervisor and/or principal. Others who might be involved include librarians, social workers, and parents.

      In making selections, teachers will consider educational and artistic criteria and the experience and background of their students. They will be alert to areas of sensitivity including but not limited to language, violence, drug or alcohol abuse, and sexual issues.

      Parental Notification:

      In cases where a potential controversy has been identified related to language, violence, drug and alcohol abuse or sexual issues, a summary including a brief description of the item and its relevance to the course and selection criteria will be developed.

      Parents will receive notification of all health videos and units before they are shown. Early in the school year or semester, each teacher will compile a list of all films (including MPAA ratings if available) intended for use in his or her class and provide the list and summary to parents for review.

      At all grade levels, this list and summary will be sent home with a request that parents contact the appropriate teacher should they have concerns about their child’s viewing a particular film.

      Should a film or video program that has not been included in the early list be identified as potentially controversial, another notice will be sent home with at least a two-week preview period, if possible.

      Alternatives

      Teachers will make alternative assignments for students who themselves or whose parents do not wish them to view a specific film.

      CHALLENGE PROCESS

      Persons wishing to challenge the use of materials covered by this policy are to refer to the process outlined in Policy 1420 and use the forms appended to it.

      USING EXCERPTS

      At various times, to illuminate an idea or as part of a student report, short nonprint selections may be used. Good judgment should be used in selecting these excerpts and that criteria for use will match that of this policy. While prior parental notification will not be required, students will be informed of content and allowed to briefly and easily excuse themselves from class if they so desire.

      FINAL NOTE

      The faculty and staff of Guilderland Central School District recognize that each of our students has a different level of sensitivity. As well as each teacher tries to know each individual student, we recognize that parents know them better. Therefore, we strongly encourage parents to obtain a copy of the non-print material and to review it. If parents have any questions or concerns, they are encouraged to contact their child’s teacher.

      Cross-ref: 1420, Complaints About Curricula or Instructional Materials
      4510.2, Internet and Computer Acceptable Use Policy
      8650, School District Compliance with Copyright Law

      Adopted: November 15, 1994
      Revised: January 26, 1999
      Revised, Adopted: April 9, 2013
      Revised, Adopted: October 23, 2018

      4513 Library Materials Selection

      The Board of Education, as the governing body of the school district, is legally responsible for the selection of library materials, including the selection and approval of printed and non-printed materials for its use. Therefore, the Board directs the Superintendent to develop procedures for the selection of appropriate materials.

      Further, the Board endorses the guidelines approved by the American Library Association that such resources:

      1. provide information that will enrich and support the curriculum, taking into consideration the varied interests, abilities, and maturity levels of the students served;
      1. provide information that will stimulate growth in factual knowledge, literary appreciation, aesthetic values, and ethical standards;
      1. provide information that will enable students to make intelligent judgments in their daily lives;
      1. provide information and guidance on opposing sides of controversial issues so that young citizens may develop the practice of critical reading and thinking;
      1. provide information representative of the many religious, ethnic, and cultural groups and their contributions to our American heritage; and
      1. place principle above personal opinion and reason above prejudice in the selection of materials of the highest quality in order to assure a comprehensive collection appropriate for the users of the library.

      These guidelines should be consistent with the district’s Instructional Goals, as stated in Policy 4000.

      Every reasonable effort shall be made to assure that library resource materials represent the most current information available in the subjects represented in the curriculum.

      Complaints or challenges to the selection of library materials should be made in accordance with current Board policy.

      Cross-ref: 1420-R, Complaints about Curricula or Instructional Materials
      Ref: Education Law §§1709(15); 1711(5)(f)
      Board of Educ., Island Trees UFSD v. Pico, 457 US 853 (1982)

      Adopted March 24, 1998
      Adopted September 10, 2013
      Revised, Adopted July 2, 2019

      4526.1 Internet Safety

      The Board of Education in accordance with the Children=s Internet Protection Act (CIPA) and the Protecting Children in the 21st Century Act requires that the District educate, supervise and monitor the appropriate use by students of the District=s online computer network and access to the Internet.
      All District computers and electronic devices with Internet access to be used by or with students, shall be equipped with technology protection measures or Internet filters. This protection will block or filter inappropriate material or pictures that are obscene, pornographic or images harmful to minors. Internet access to all newly acquired computers and electronic devices will have filtering or blocking technology installed. This shall be configured and documented by the Technology Department. Access to specific websites may be enabled for staff and/or students on an individual basis for bona fide research or other lawful purpose. Requests for access to specific websites that are otherwise blocked shall be made to the Superintendent or his/her designated technology leaders.
      The District, through its staff members, technology and systems reviews, shall monitor online activities of students while in school, including, but not limited to use of e-mail, chat rooms and other forms of direct communication or instant messaging. Monitoring shall also be used for supervision and to prevent hacking and other unlawful activities by students, and to ensure access to materials harmful to minors is denied.
      All District Internet users, including staff and students, are prohibited from the unauthorized disclosure, use or dissemination of personal identification information regarding students.
      Staff shall be responsible for educating students on appropriate online behavior, including safety on the Internet, appropriate behavior while online, on social networking Web sites and in chat rooms and cyberbullying awareness and response, in accordance with the District’s Acceptable Use Policy (4510.2) for Student Computer and Internet Use.
      Any user who receives harassing, threatening or unwelcome communications shall immediately bring them to the attention of a teacher, building administrator or superintendent, as appropriate.
      Any violation of this policy may result in the revocation of the use of the District’s computer systems and access to the internet, disciplinary proceedings and/or referral to law enforcement officials.
      Adopted December 8, 2015
      Revised, Adopted January 9, 2018

      4526.1.R Internet Safety-Regulation

      The following rules and regulations implement the Internet Safety Policy adopted by the Board of Education to make safe for children the use of district computers for access to the Internet and World Wide Web.

      I. Definitions

      In accordance with the Children’s Internet Protection Act,

      • Child pornography refers to any visual depiction, including any photograph, film, video, picture or computer or computer-generated image or picture, whether made or produced by electronic, mechanical, or other means, of sexually explicit conduct, where (a) the production of such visual depiction involves the use of a minor engaging in sexually explicit conduct; (b) such visual depiction is a digital image, computer image, or computer-generated image that is, or is indistinguishable from that of a minor engaging in sexually explicit conduct; or (c) such visual depiction has been created, adapted or modified to appear that an identifiable minor is engaging in sexually explicit conduct.
      • Harmful to minors means any picture, image, graphic image file, or other visual depiction that (a) taken as a whole and with respect to minors, appeals to a prurient interest in nudity, sex, or excretion; (b) depicts, describes or represents, in a patently offensive way with respect to what is suitable for minors, an actual or simulated sexual act or sexual contact, actual or simulated normal or perverted sexual acts, or a lewd exhibition of the genitals; and (c) taken as a whole, lacks serious literary, artistic, political, or scientific value as to minors.

      II. Blocking and Filtering Measures

      • The Superintendent or his or her designee shall secure information about, and ensure the purchase or provision of, a technology protection measure that blocks access from all district computers to visual depictions on the Internet and World Wide Web that are obscene, child pornography or harmful to minors
      • The district’s computer network coordinator shall be responsible for ensuring the installation and proper use of any Internet blocking and filtering technology protection measure obtained by the district.
      • The computer network coordinator or his or her designee may disable or relax the district’s Internet blocking and filtering technology measure only for adult staff members conducting research related to their official responsibilities.
      • The computer network coordinator shall monitor the online activities of adult staff members for whom the blocking and filtering technology measure has been disabled or reduced to ensure there is not access to visual depictions that are obscene or child pornography.

      III. Monitoring of Online Activities

      • The district’s computer network coordinator shall be responsible for monitoring to ensure that the online activities of staff and students are consistent with the district’s Internet Safety Policy and this regulation. He or she may inspect, copy, review, and store at any time, and without prior notice, any and all usage of the district’s computer network for accessing the Internet and World Wide Web and direct electronic communications, as well as any and all information transmitted or received during such use. All users of the district’s computer network shall have no expectation of privacy regarding any such materials.
      • Except as otherwise authorized under the district’s Computer Network or Acceptable Use Policy, students may use the district’s computer network to access the Internet and World Wide Web only during supervised class time, study periods or at the school library, and exclusively for research related to their course work.
      • Staff supervising students using district computers shall help to monitor student online activities to ensure students access the Internet and World Wide Web, and/or participate in authorized forms of direct electronic communications in accordance with the district’s Internet Safety Policy and this regulation.
      • The district’s computer network coordinator shall monitor student online activities to ensure students are not engaging in hacking (gaining or attempting to gain unauthorized access to other computers or computer systems), and other unlawful activities.

      IV. Training

      • The district’s computer network coordinator shall provide training to staff and students on the requirements of the Internet Safety Policy and this regulation at the beginning of each school year.
      • The training of staff and students shall highlight the various activities prohibited by the Internet Safety Policy, and the responsibility of staff to monitor student online activities to ensure compliance.
      • The district shall provide age-appropriate instruction to students regarding appropriate online behavior. Such instruction shall include, but not be limited to: positive interactions with others online, including on social networking sites and in chat rooms; proper online social etiquette; protection from online predators and personal safety; and how to recognize and respond to cyberbullying and other threats.
      • Students shall be directed to consult with their classroom teacher if they are unsure whether their contemplated activities when accessing the Internet or Worldwide Web are directly related to their course work.
      • Staff and students will be advised not to disclose, use or disseminate personal information about students when accessing the Internet or engaging in authorized forms of direct electronic communications.
      • Staff and students will also be informed of the range of possible consequences attendant to a violation of the Internet Safety Policy and this regulation.

      V. Reporting of Violations

      • Violations of the Internet Safety Policy and this regulation by students and staff shall be reported to the Building Principal.
      • The Principal shall take appropriate corrective action in accordance with authorized disciplinary procedures.

      VI. Consequences

      Consequences may include, but are not limited to, the revocation of computer access privileges, school suspension in the case of students and disciplinary charges in the case of teachers, and/or referral to law enforcement officers.

      Reviewed/Adopted January 9, 2018

      4531 Field Trips and Excursions

      The Board of Education recognizes that field trips are an educationally sound and important ingredient in the instructional program of the schools.
      For the purposes of this policy, a field trip occurs when students leave school grounds under the supervision of district staff for an educational purpose. There are two types of field trips: curricular and extracurricular. An excursion is a school-related trip that may not necessarily have an educational purpose (class trip, athletic team). A trip organized by an independent agent outside the aegis of the school district is considered a non-school sponsored trip.
      Each student must secure the permission of his/her parent or guardian before participating in such activity. Only Guilderland C.S.D. students may participate in school-sponsored trips.
      Student transportation for all field trips and/or excursions shall be provided for through the use of district owned school buses or licensed public carriers meeting all applicable State regulations.
      At least one bus driver must remain with the school buses at all times.

      Curricular Field Trips

      Curricular field trips are those in which all students are expected to participate as an assignment of the course or class. These trips may occur during or after the school day. Expenses, except for food, are to be paid by the school district.

      Extracurricular Field Trips/Excursion

      All other student trips, which are directly related to a school class, club, or team, are considered extracurricular or excursions. These include trips by an entire grade level, a class, a club, an athletic team, and in some instances, a performing group (band, orchestra, chorus, drama). Expenses associated with these trips may be paid by the school. However, when a trip is beyond the scope of a group’s regular activity, students may be required to provide all or part of the fees and expenses. Occasionally the mode of transportation, facilities, or nature of the trip limits the number of students who may participate. In such a case, a fair and equitable selection process will be established.

      A field trip must be reasonable in terms of time, distance, and cost.

      Field trips are considered a part of the curriculum of the schools and attendance on field trips is governed by the same rules as attendance in regular classrooms activities.

      Field trip support shall be determined annually by the Board of Education during its budget deliberations. Regardless of the fiscal support for field trips, the rules of the District for approval and conduct of such trips shall apply. All overnight and out of state field trips must be submitted to the Superintendent of School at least 30 days prior to the scheduled date of the field trip. Other field trips will be approved by the sponsoring faculty member’s immediate supervisor and/or the building principal. Approval will be based on the following criteria:

      a) The objectives of the trip are specifically related to the curriculum, co-curricular experience or interscholastic events;
      b) The total ongoing school program will not be adversely affected by participation of staff and students participating in the field trip;
      c) The planning of the trip provides for the safety and access of students;
      d) Appropriate educational experiences will be provide for those eligible students who do not participate in curriculum-related field trips on scheduled school days;
      e) The proposed program is feasible within the time allotted;
      f) The financial impact including impact on school community and family resources will be considered. No student shall be excluded from a field trip for financial reasons;
      g) The planning of the field trip provides for appropriate student supervision.

      The Superintendent will develop appropriate procedures pursuant to this policy.

      Code of Conduct

      Each student is expected to comply with all rules and regulations set forth in the Guilderland C.S.D. Code of Conduct and must meet the behavioral standards set forth below to be eligible to participate in field trips:

      1. the student displays responsibility toward property;
      2. the student demonstrates appropriate manners and politeness in group situations;
      3. the student follows directions when instructed; and
      4. the student can be trusted to behave properly.

      In agreement with the building principal, the student’s teacher shall be responsible for determining whether the student meets these criteria. If, in the teacher’s judgment, the student does not meet the standards of behavior, the child=s teacher may deny the student the opportunity to participate on a particular trip if a parent/guardian cannot accompany the student.

      Supervision

      Students must be adequately supervised at all times. The teacher(s) organizing the trip are responsible to communicate clearly to students and chaperones the rules and regulations of the trip.

      The Board of Education does not endorse, support, or assume liability in any way for any staff member who takes students on trips that have not been appropriately approved.
      Travel for the purposes of competition or performance associated with a club or group sanctioned by the District shall not be considered a field trip. Examples of such travel include, but are not limited to participation in interscholastic sports, participation in All-State music performances, academic competitions such as Math League, etc. Such travel shall be subject to Superintendent approval when travel is overnight, out-of-state or over 100 miles, one-way.

      Adopted April 13, 1999
      Revised June 8, 1999
      Revised and Adopted November 27, 2001
      Revised and Adopted July 5, 2011
      Revised and Adopted October 22, 2013
      Revised and Adopted November 1, 2016

      Non-school-sponsored Trips:

      Acting as independent agents outside the aegis of the District, staff members sometimes organize and conduct non-school trips that involve Guilderland students. Requirements for using district facilities for organizing such non-school trips are the same as for other non-school based groups are delineated in the Building Use Policy 1500.

      4531-R Field Trips and Excursions Regulations

      The following guidelines will be used when considering field trip proposals, whether for an extended or day trip:

      1. All curricular and extracurricular trips must have a well-defined educational purpose appropriate to the student group(s).
      2. The itinerary and arrangements shall clearly reflect the purpose of the trip. Expectations for both students and chaperones will be clearly defined before the trip.
      3. School-sponsored activities for students to earn money to pay for an extended trip should be made available so that no student is excluded because of cost. With few exceptions, ordinary (day) field trips will not require fund raising. Typically, fund-raising activities for field trips should take place at times other than the instructional day. (See Policies 1510, Public Sales on School Property, and 5660, Student Gifts and Solicitations.)
      4. Before any trip is scheduled, the school district calendar should be reviewed to avoid conflicts with already scheduled events such as school/grade level testing and review programs, other major school activities and events, and religious holidays.
      5. Appropriate supervision will be provided for each field trip, as determined by the Principal.
      6. Written parental authorization is required prior to participation. This authorization shall include a release for emergency medical treatment.
      7. In the event that existing school district liability insurance is not applicable, additional coverage must be provided by the student=s parents/guardians.
      8. A “Field Trip Request Form” must be submitted to the Principal for approval at least two weeks prior to the trip via the department supervisor before commitments are made for the trip.
      9. Overnight, out-of-state and trips over 100 miles, one-way, must be submitted to the Superintendent of Schools for approval. School-sponsored international trips must be approved by the Superintendent and Board of Education.
      10. Students, staff and chaperones are representatives of the Guilderland Central School District and shall adhere to the rules and regulations in the Guilderland C.S.D. Code of Conduct and conduct themselves in a manner that will bring credit to the school and community. Rules in student and staff handbooks shall apply.
      11. When school-sponsored international trips are planned, the sponsor and building administrator must present all appropriate information to the Superintendent for his/her review and to the Board of Education for approval prior to the collection of any monies and/or commitment required from students or parents.
      12. Recognizing that return times can vary significantly from those published prior to the trips beginning, it is essential that staff members have in place a method to notify parents so that there is a good match between arrival of returning buses and parents at the return site.
      13. When staff act as independent agents outside the aegis of the District to organize and conduct non-school trips that involve Guilderland students (i.e. international travel through travel agents such as EFT Tours), all planning and organizing of these non-school trips must occur outside work hours. If school buildings are used for planning or organizations meetings, approval must be secured through the “Building Use” request process. No school supplies, materials or equipment may be used for preparation or dissemination of trip information. However, informational brochures or posters may be made available in corridors or administrative offices. No school or class records, lists, or rosters may be used in the planning or recruitment process.

      Note: Prior regulation, Policy Manual, Administrative Regulations, revised
      Reviewed March 23, 1999
      Revised July 5, 2011
      Revised November 1, 2016

      4531.1-R Foreign Travel Regulation

      On the recommendation of the Superintendent of Schools, the Board of Education has the authority to approve foreign travel by students and staff in support of academic studies which are supplemental to the curriculum offered at the district. The following administrative procedures shall support and govern the district’s foreign travel program.

      1. Foreign travel desired by staff and/or students will be submitted to the Superintendent prior to the first week of October of an academic year: Plans for the implementation of such travel should not begin until approval is received in writing by the staff member requesting such travel.
      2. Foreign travel by students accompanied by staff will be permitted during the vacation periods of the academic year and shall not cause students to miss more than a total of two school days, either before or after the vacation period.
      3. Foreign travel endorsed by the district under numbers 1 and 2 above will only include students who are enrolled in the district and staff who are employees of the district. Other adults and students may not be a component of such travel.
      4. Regular meetings in preparation of such travel will be developed and held by the teachers who are to be involved with the trip. The coordinator and the Superintendent must be informed of each one of these preparatory meetings and may attend at their discretion. The Superintendent may send a representative to those meetings.
      5. Unless otherwise approved by the Superintendent, each enrollment of 15 students to embark on such travel will be accompanied by one faculty member approved by the administration.
      6. Transportation from the district to the disembarkation airport will be in a similar manner as all field trips are handled during the course of the school year.
      7. In the event that it is essential that a staff member be absent from official days of school to complete such foreign travel commitment, he/she will be responsible for securing the substitute teacher for his/her academic classes. Payment to such substitute will be the responsibility of the school district. The name of the substitute secured must be submitted to the Superintendent for approval 20 school days prior to the day/days of absence anticipated by the staff member.
      8. Students, who of necessity, and approved by the Superintendent, must miss scheduled classes because of such foreign travel, will be held fully responsible for the work completed in such classes during their period of absence. Only students in good academic standing will be allowed access to the provisions of this policy.

      9. Students and/or staff, who must, of necessity, and approved by the Superintendent, miss school days because of such foreign travel will not be charged with a day of absence. Students will be marked as on an educational trip and staff as accompanying such opportunities.
      10. School District Insurance Coverage – Student Travel/Exchange Program

      The district will provide the following insurance coverage to afford the school district appropriate protection in regard to foreign travel for students/staff in accord with this policy.
      a. The district’s existing general and excess liability policies will apply in the same manner to foreign travel, covering the district, board of education, staff and volunteers. If required, a separate liability policy for student travel will be obtained providing the same coverage and limits as the district’s existing liability policies.
      b. The school district’s liability policy will apply on a world-wide basis. The insurance company must receive prior notice from the administration specifically noting the countries to be included. Such notification is to be provided to the insurance company 90 days prior to the embarkation date.
      c. Parents will be notified of any coverage offered by the travel company for their consideration, if the district is so notified.

      Further, parents will be encouraged to contact their health insurance carrier to confirm the coverage for their children in the country to which they will travel.
      d. Insurance coverage, whether for liability or trip accident, applies only to those persons identified in the policies. Other parties are welcome to purchase insurance coverage on their own.
      11. The office of the Superintendent may exercise discretion to limit foreign travel should the circumstances of “world conditions” be evaluated to be “unsafe.”

      Adopted July 5, 2011
      Revised and Adopted October 18, 2011

      4532 School Volunteers

      The Board of Education recognizes that the use of volunteers strengthens school/community relations through positive participation, builds an understanding of school programs among interested citizens, and can assist district employees and benefit students by providing more individualized and enriched opportunities in instruction. Volunteers are defined as individuals who provide assistance in the school setting. The definition does not include visitors who come to the school setting to observe activities and who are covered under Board

      Policy 5300.65. The Board encourages volunteers from all backgrounds and age groups who are willing to share their time, training, experience or personal characteristics to benefit the students of the district.

      Volunteers may be involved in many facets of school operations, from mentor/tutor relationships and clerical tasks to chaperoning field trips. Volunteers shall not be used to provide transportation for school-sponsored activities.

      No volunteer shall be permitted to have unsupervised direct contact with students unless otherwise authorized by the building principal or his/her designee.

      School personnel who are responsible for tasks or projects that involve the use of volunteers shall identify appropriate tasks and time schedules for such volunteer activities, as well as make provisions for adequate supervision.

      Persons wishing to volunteer must contact the Building Principal or classroom teacher and must complete a volunteer application form for the building principal to review and approve.

      Volunteers must also sign a confidentiality statement. The application and confidentiality statement must be completed annually.

      The district shall retain a complete record of all information obtained through the application process for the same period of time it retains information regarding district employees.

      All volunteers are required to act in accordance with district policies, regulations and school rules. Any staff member who supervises volunteers may ask any volunteer who violates district policies, regulations or school rules to leave school grounds.

      School volunteers may not access student personally identifiable information, except if permitted under policy 5500, Student Records.

      Each Building Principal shall be responsible for maintaining a current and complete record of all active volunteers.

      Cross-ref: 5500, Student Records
      4532-E.1 Application for Volunteers
      4532-E.2 Student Privacy and Confidentiality Agreement for District Volunteers
      5300.65 Visitors to Schools
      5300.65-R Visitors to Schools Regulation

      Ref: Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act, as amended, 20 USC §1232g; 34 CFR 99.31(a)(1)(i)(B)

      Adopted July 2, 2019

      4533 Policy on Additional High School Course Options

      In addition to the core curriculum option, there are other approaches for students to earn credit toward high school graduation. These include: a) credit by examination; b) independent study; c) college course work; and d) internships e) credit recovery programs. In addition, a student may with permission choose to audit a course. Please note that these alternative approaches can be pursued and prior approval is required.

      Auditing a Course

      A course audited is listed on the permanent record as an “audit” with no credit issued. Students may audit courses under special circumstances as classroom space allows. The “Audit Course Request” form is available from the school counselor listing the details and stipulations. This document must be signed by the student, parent, and department supervisor prior to the beginning of the course.

      Credit by Examination

      Students who have not completed the generally expected units of study (based on the traditional seat time and successfully adhering to the course requirements) may be admitted to a checkpoint exam, Regents examination, or for the purpose of demonstrating academic proficiency acquired through independent, out of school, or other study. Students may be admitted to such an examination only upon the determination by the Superintendent of Schools or his/her designee, with the understanding that the student will benefit academically by exercising this option. Such credit can be included toward the completion of a sequence and graduation requirements.
      In the case of the science Regents examinations, the student must meet the laboratory requirement before admission to the examination. This requirement can be met through industrial and commercial experiences or by completing the necessary number of school laboratory exercises.
      Source: NYS School Administrator’s Manual, 2001 Edition

      Independent Study (Students Not Enrolled in Courses of Study)

      Independent study, for credit will be available to meet special individual needs of students in grades nine (9) through twelve (12). Credit shall be granted only for courses in the approved curriculum. Request for independent study must be made to the teacher and department supervisor, and approved by the student’s school counselor and the high school principal.
      In addition, under New York State guidelines, a student may earn up to a maximum of 6 ½ units of credit without completing the units of study requirement. In order to earn such credit, the student must satisfy each of the criteria listed below:

      1. Based on the student’s academic performance, the Superintendent of Schools or his/her designee, must determine that the student will benefit academically by exercising this alternative.
      2. The student must pass an oral examination or successfully complete a special project to demonstrate proficiency in the subject area as determined by the principal or his/her designee.
      3. The student must achieve a score of at least 85, or its equivalent as determined by the Commissioner on a State-developed examination.
      4. The student must attend school, or have received substantially equivalent instruction elsewhere, in accordance with Section 3202 of the Education Law, until the age of 16, pursuant to Sections 3204 and 3205 of the Education Law.

      Source: NYS School Administrator’s Manual, 2001 Edition

      College Course Work

      Advanced Placement classes and Syracuse University Project Advance (SUPA) courses are offered at Guilderland High School. Depending on the college/ university, college credit may be granted in addition to meeting the high school course requirements. Other college course options may be considered at the student’s request. With permission of the principal, students may also earn high school credit by successfully completing college courses. Final approval from the principal must be granted before enrolling in the specified course.
      Note: The high school principal may consider other enrichment course options offered at colleges/universities for high school credit if requested in advance by students.

      Internships

      The Guilderland High School instructional program does include opportunities for internships. Such possibilities are typically linked, but not limited to programs in Career Exploration Internship Program (CEIP), or other School-To-Career options. Students are encouraged to contact their guidance counselor or cooperating teacher to pursue a structured internship leading to course credit.

      Credit Recovery

      Guilderland High School provides opportunity for students who have failed to achieve the requirements in a course of study with the means to make up pertinent course and learning work. To receive credit, the student shall successfully complete a district approved credit recovery program and demonstrate mastery of the learning standards for the subject.

      Adopted February 12, 2002
      Revised and Adopted October 22, 2013

      4710 Student Assessment and Grade Reporting Systems

      The Guilderland Central School District places strong value on its students and their development as learners. The challenge of creating quality student assessment and reporting systems is to balance reporting needs with instructional purposes. No one method of student assessment and grade reporting serves all purposes well. Under this premise, it is the intent of this policy to have a multi-faceted, comprehensive reporting system. Our approach to student assessment and grade reporting is designed to:

      • communicate the achievements of students to parents and others;
      • give information that students can use for self-evaluation
      • provide incentives for students to learn
      • identify students for different educational options; and
      • evaluate program effectiveness

      The Board of Education realizes that classroom teachers have the primary responsibility to evaluate students and determine student grades and/or progress. Student assessment and grade reporting are intended to be positive tools that indicate to parents, the student, and teaching staff the level of performance and development in each class or subject area in which a student is enrolled. At all levels within our school system, teachers are expected to identify grade level or course expectations, the evidence that they will use to verify that learning has occurred, and what criteria they will use to judge that evidence. This approach should be communicated to students and parents.
      The Board of Education recognizes that students are individuals with their own abilities and capabilities. The district will utilize a local grading or progress monitoring system appropriate to elementary, middle, and high school levels. Information will be reported in a variety of ways. In addition to formal report card grades or progress reports, feedback about student performance will include parent conferences, telephone and/or email contacts, standardized test score results, etc. Student assessment and grade reporting should relate to learning criteria based on the following guidelines:

      a) Product Criteria: Focus on what students know and are able to do at that time, typically through examination scores, quiz results, overall assessments, or other culminating demonstrations of learning.
      b) Process Criteria: Student assessment and grade reporting should reflect not just the final results but also how students got there. This takes into consideration overall effort, homework completion, and class participation.
      c) Progress Criteria: Considers how much students have gained from their learning experiences.

      Adopted December 10, 2002
      Revised and Adopted April 8, 2014

      4710-R Student Assessment and Grading Systems Regulation

      I. Elementary School

      A. General Guidelines

      The elementary school program is designed to develop students’ confidence as learners, to instill a love of learning, and to help them develop the knowledge, skills, and attitudes needed to communicate effectively, understand the world around them, and participate fully in a democratic society.

      Elementary progress reports are shared with parents four times per year. The report card is designed to share information about student’s strengths and challenges in performing to high expectations. Our progress report is standards-aligned, which means it describes what a student should know and be able to do at each grade level and in all subjects; it also provides information on students’ work habits, behavior, and effort.

      Parent conferences are held two times per year in Kindergarten, and grades 1 and 2. For grades 3 through 5, conferences are held once in the fall with an additional day in the spring should parents or teachers request it. Parent-teacher conferences may be scheduled at other times of the year as well.

      In addition to progress reports and parent conferences, there are several other sources of assessment that are part of the overall reporting system. These components include grade level testing required by New York State, reading benchmark assessments, writing folders and portfolios, Open House programs, learning fairs where student work is displayed, long-term projects, classroom assessments, daily work samples, etc. Regardless of the form , our assessment and reporting systems is designed to provide important information about each student’s progress so that students, families and teachers can work together to set meaningful goals for improvement and growth.

      II. Middle School

      A. General Guidelines

      1. The Middle School has a numerical grading system based on 0 to 100 point scale with 65% considered passing

      2. Report card grades are based on tests, homework, classroom participation, projects and assignments. Although there is much similarity in the way teachers assess student performance, here are some differences based on value assigned to each of the various grading components.

      3. A comment section relating to student participation in class, attitude toward work and thoroughness in preparation of homework assignments will appear in a separately marked column for the marking period as part of each report card. Additional feedback in the form of specific comments from teachers to their students and parents is strongly encouraged, particularly in cases where students are not performing up to their potential. Completion of this section by the teacher is strongly recommended but not mandatory for each student.

      4. There will be a minimum of ten grades per quarter. Supervised tests and quizzes in class, and in some cases, work to be completed outside of class such as a writing assignment (in English / language arts), an oral report, or a student project may be used. The various tests, quizzes, and projects used in determining the student’s grades will be proportionally averaged so that the final mark is indicative of the student’s achievement in relationship to the objectives of the course. Each teacher will have a written grading policy to be shared with parents and students.

      5. Make-up procedures and incomplete grades:

      • Students who are absent must make special arrangements to complete any work missed;
      • Every effort should be made for students to take a make-up test within one week of the time the student returns to school.
      • Students must complete work in a manner such that incomplete grades can be converted to grades within two weeks after the end of the marking period date. Teachers must enter a grade within this two week window.
      • In the event that a student misses a final exam but will return to school prior to the half- day sessions in June, the teacher should arrange for the student to take the exams.
      • If the student misses a final exam but will not be returning to school, then the teacher must notify the Guidance Office and submit a copy of the final exam, answer key, and any supporting materials. The House Office will arrange make-up times for those students who miss exams after the half-day sessions.

      B. Grading System

      1. Regular Classes

      Some teachers assign numerical grades to each completed piece of student work, then calculate a numerical average for the quarter and for each marking period. Others use a check, check-plus, check-minus system. There is no requirement that one system be used by all. Any system that is fair, explainable and reflective of the relative accomplishment of students is acceptable. Whatever the approach for student grading and assessment, the practice will be communicated to students and parents.

      A student’s growth and progress are assessed on a quarterly basis using a 0-100 numerical scale with 65% considered passing. A minimum of a 50% will be given to all students for the first three quarters in order to promote student academic success.

      Calculating the Final Average: Final grades are determined from the quarterly grades.

      • For year long courses, the final grade is the average of the four marking periods.
      • In classes where final examinations are given, the exams count as 20% of the final ten-week mark. Eighth grade students take several State tests starting in January and ending in June. These are not used in grade computation.
      • Students taking high school courses at the middle school have four quarterly numeric grades. Students taking high school courses at the middle school have four quarterly grades. Whenever a final assessment grade (Regents, Local Final Exam, or Project) is used, it may be applied up to a value of 20% for a final average calculation. This will be consistent with the practice applied for the same course at the high school level. This final mark and the percentage of the final grade will be specified by the department and with approval of the appropriate administrator.
      • In each course, the passing grade is 65%. A minimum grade of 50% will be given for the first three quarters in order to promote student success. Academic intervention support and assistance will be a high priority for these students whose grades are in danger of failing a course.
      • When the final average is computed in June, the computer program will automatically calculate the average based on the grades available. Teachers who wish to override the computer, must fill out an override form documenting reasons and complete the final average themselves.
      • In some rare cases, students/courses are graded with an S/U or Pass/Fail sequence (i.e., some non-English speaking students). The computer will NOT compute final course averages correctly in these cases. A teacher must determine the final average and notify the students House Principal and Guidance Counselor so the resulting “S” or “U” can be noted in the “Average” column.

      2. Additional Grading Systems
      a. Student Assessment in Other Disciplines, grades 6-8
      1. Art, Health, Home and Career Skills, Technology Education, General Music: Courses in these areas vary in length in the different grades. Some courses run for ten weeks, others for twenty weeks.
      2. Interim progress reports (generally at the mid-point) must be sent to students not making an effort in class. The teacher has the option to send Interim Progress Reports for those students who are making an effort and doing well.
      3. At the completion of a ten or twenty-week course, a final grade will be included on the report card.

      b. Student Assessment in Physical Education
      1. In compliance with the district policy on Student Assessment and Grade Reporting Systems and the New York State Physical Education Assessment guidelines, the Farnsworth Middle School Physical Education Department continues to adopt and implement strategies to meet the framework of the NYS Standards.
      2. Understanding the three standards as they apply to physical education, the curriculum is designed to assess student outcomes in alignment with the performance rubrics that are clearly stated for each unit. Performance rubrics are set to assess each child=s skill level, effort/behavior, and knowledge of rules and strategies for each unit taught. A student will receive a numerical grade of a four down to a zero {four being the highest and zero the lowest}, for each performance rubric during every unit. Each unit taught in a particular semester is than calculated giving an overall grade for that semester or year.

      c. Grading of New Entrants
      If grades are available from the former school, these will be interpreted by the guidance department, administration and department supervisor to arrive at ten-week grades compatible with our grading system.

      If there are no grades available for the missing marking periods, no grades will be given for these missing marks until completion of the fourth marking period. At this time, the grades for the marking periods present will be averaged and this average will constitute the grades for the missing period.

      If students are enrolled during a ten-week period and are present for 50% of the time, they will receive a grade based on their achievement while attending Farnsworth Middle School.

      C. Parent Communication
      1. Communication to students and parents about student performance occurs on a regular basis. Report cards are sent home every ten weeks according to the schedule on the school calendar. Interim reports are available at 5 week intervals between report cards. These interim progress reports are only sent home upon parental request. Our School Tool parent portal has weekly assignment grades posted for parent and student view. Interim progress report grades are calculated by averaging daily assignment totals and are made available every five weeks. Questions regarding grades should be addressed to individual teachers.
      2. Conferences: If parents or teachers wish to schedule a conference, they should arrange the dates through the House Principals office. Conferences may be scheduled with individual teachers or the full team. Team planning time will constitute the major portion of time devoted to teacher/parent conferences, especially when all team teachers are at the meeting.
      3. Criteria for Substantial Fall-Off Determination: Each teacher will make contact with a parent whenever any substantial fall-off in a student’s performance or achievement occurs. The purpose is to inform parents of the situation and to consult with them toward a cooperative action to remedy the situation.

      Substantial fall-off in student performance is defined as follows:
      a. When the student’s performance (class participation, homework, projects, assignments, quizzes, reports, and the like) has deteriorated to the extent that there will be a 10 point decline in the student’s class average or
      b. When it appears that the child will receive a 65% or lower during the marking period in which he/she enters a new grade.

      4. These procedures will be followed in contacting parents to report substantial fall-off:
      a. Teacher: Initial contact with the parent should be immediately made by the teacher. The teacher should offer to set up a conference if the parent desires and inform the counselor.
      b. Counselor: The counselor will discuss the student’s fall-off with the teacher to determine appropriate assistance that can be provided.
      c. Department Supervisor: The department supervisor will review the report cards and student fall-off records to ensure that parents have been informed of the drop in student performance.

      D. End of the Year Reporting

      An End-of-the-Year Grade Reporting booklet will be distributed in June to assist teachers in finalizing grades for the year.

      Teachers are to submit all grade books to their department supervisor on the last day of school. Supervisors will forward the books to the Guidance Office. Teachers should CLEARLY LABEL the following:

      a. Fourth Quarter Section;
      b. Final Test Grade;
      c. Final Average.

      In addition, in their grade books, teachers shall clarify their formula for calculating fourth quarter and final grades. The guidance counselor, supervisor, and/or administrator must be able to recalculate a student’s grade from the grade book. Grade books will be clearly marked with the teacher’s name in the upper right corner.

      III. High School

      The school district recognizes that no one method of student assessment and grade reporting system can be all encompassing. The information outlined below is a starting point for the multi-faceted, comprehensive reporting system that we strive to achieve because it is a critical element for students, parents, and staff in the overall educational process. Student assessment and grade reporting is considered a positive tool to measure growth, progress, and the development of the student. One of several important components of student assessment and grading systems is the student’s report card. Another key component for secondary students is the web-based parent portal that provides a secure access point for both parents and students to get current information about students’ progress.

      A. General Guidelines

      All teachers must provide students with a written grading policy within 10 days from the beginning of the course. This information is to be shared with parents as part of the first Open House/Parents’ Night held in the fall. This information will help to solidify the high school’s academic expectations. A teacher’s grading policy should address the following areas: class attendance, class participation, homework, tests, quizzes, projects, working with others, class notes, and, if applicable, extra credit (see sample exhibit 4710-E). Should a student’s performance decline dramatically over a two-week period (generally meant to be a decline of 10 points or in the student’s average), the teacher is expected to make every effort to contact a parent/guardian as soon as possible.
      The following are guidelines regarding averaging and maintaining marks for students:

      1. All marks assigned to students must be arrived at through a justifiable system clearly evident in the teacher’s marking book.
      2. With the exception of Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory (S/U) courses, marks in courses are given in units of one (e.g., 80 or 81 or 82, etc.).
      3. Teachers MUST show at least one grade a week for all students in their grading book. A minimum of nine marks must be evident in computing the nine-week average.
      4. The grade may be the result of tests, quizzes, projects, class participation, or homework.
      5. In computing the final mark for the course, teacher shall observe these guidelines:
      a. Students taking high school courses have four quarterly grades. Whenever a final assessment grade (Regents, Local Final Exam, or Project) is used, it may be applied up to a value of 20% for a final average calculation. This will be applied consistently for all sections of a like course at the high school level. This final mark and the percentage of the final grade will be specified by the department and with approval of the appropriate administrator.

      b. The marks of two marking periods are averaged for semester-length courses. Whenever a final assessment grade(Local Final Exam, or Project) is used, it may be applied up to a value of 20% for a final average calculation. This will be applied consistently for all sections of a like course at the high school level. This final mark and the percentage of the final grade will be specified by the department and with approval of the appropriate administrator.

      6. Comments are to be used on the report cards as often as possible. Additional feedback in the form of specific comments from teachers to their students and parents is strongly encouraged, particularly in cases where students are not performing up to their potential.
      7. A minimum final grade of 65 is required to receive course credit. A grade of 64 is not to be used for a marking period or a final grade.
      8. Students’ overall average (GPA) is calculated before the start of the senior year and again in June of the senior year. Students will be notified of their GPA through a letter from the school counseling staff at those two points in time. Averages are based on all high school courses that are assigned a numerical grade. Each student’s cumulative academic average is computer without regard to weighting. High school credit bearing courses from eighth grade (i.e. mathematics, science, second language, and art) are also included in the computation.

      Parents and students are welcome to visit the Counseling Office at any time to review a student’s cumulative record in planning for the future.

      B. Additional Grading Procedures: Incomplete, Medical, Minimum, Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory

      1. Incomplete: Students may receive an “INC,” incomplete, as a grade if they have missed classes in the weeks just prior to the end of a marking period, thereby missing assignments or tests during that time.
      a. Purpose: Students need a reasonable amount of time to complete work missed at the end of a marking period without jeopardizing their performance during the new marking period.
      b. Procedure: If students are absent just prior to the end of the marking period and missed tests, quizzes and/or assignments, the teacher may record “I” (incomplete), with appropriate comments, on the report card for that quarter. Students should make up the work as soon as possible, but can have no more than five weeks to make up the work not completed during that time. Third quarter work must be made up within four weeks. Parents can view the completion of incomplete work and the conversion to an actual grade on the portal.

      c. Assignments not made up, may be averaged in as zero for the work not completed to determine the average for the quarter which must be reported to the parents by the end of five weeks.

      2. Medical: “M” may be used to denote medical reasons for a student’s absences which exceed 10 consecutive school days, resulting in the inability to compute a fair grade.
      a. Purpose: In cases where there are long-term illnesses or accidents and students cannot complete the course requirements, an alternative means of grading may be necessary.
      b. Procedure: Students with long-term illnesses (11 days or more) will be given
      “MED,” not a grade, only with the approval of the Principal or his/her designee. In June, the teacher will average the other marking period grades and substitute that average for the “M,” except for seniors, whose substitution will be done at the middle of the 4th quarter for final rank and average.

      If a fair grade can be computed prior to the end of the year, a true grade may be entered for the marking period(s) involved as soon as practicable.
      3. Minimum Grade:

      There may be some students who perform so poorly during the first marking period of a course that they cannot achieve success in the course at a later time regardless of how much they improve in subsequent marking periods. In an effort to provide students with a chance to pass the course without compromising the intent of the grading policy, minimum grade alternative has been established as follows:

      • Grade 9: Minimum Grade: 45
      • Grade 10: Minimum Grade: 45
      • Grade 11: Minimum Grade: 40
      • Grade 12: Minimum Grade: 40

      Minimum grades apply to all four quarters

      4. Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory – S/U: Remedial Skills Courses, CEIP, Work Experience and some Independent Study courses are graded on a Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory (S/U) basis. Students taking certain elective courses (band, orchestra, choir, chorus, keyboarding, word processing, some technology education courses or other electives may choose to receive Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory (S/U) as opposed to numerical grades. (“Satisfactory” is equated with an average of 65 % or better; “unsatisfactory”, less than 65%.)

      a. Purpose: Certain courses chosen as electives can teach students effective skills and encourage broader base skill acquisition. Students who are interested in gaining these skills for personal use should be allowed to do so without having their average be adversely affected.
      b. Procedure: If a student wishes to apply for Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory:
      i. The counselor shall be consulted to determine if the course is needed for a sequence; and
      ii. The student shall file a REQUEST FOR SATISFACTORY/UNSATISFACTORY GRADE and obtain the approval of his/her parent, counselor, teacher, and department supervisor by the end of the 5th week of the course. If the approval is granted, the appropriate grade (S/U) will be assigned following each marking period and on the final exam, if applicable. The teacher will maintain numerical grades in his/her grade book, but record S/U for quarterly marks and the final grade.

      Courses in which S/U may be awarded will be noted in the Curriculum Handbook.

      Reviewed: December 10, 2002
      Revised and Reviewed April 8, 2014
      Revised and Reviewed October 20, 2015
      Revised, Reviewed October 24, 2017

      4712 Reporting Student Progress to Parents

      An important aspect of the instructional program at all levels is reporting student progress to parents. The goal is to communicate on a regular basis with the parents/guardians of each child, and to encourage parents/guardians to communicate with teachers and administrators as well.
      The district’s reporting system includes many components, including report cards and/or other written forms developed by the professional staff, scheduled conferences between parents and teachers, elementary school conference reports, and interim progress reports at the secondary level. Parents are encouraged to regularly log into the district’s secure parent portal for current information about their students’ progress. Parents are also urged to visit the school and to confer with teachers and guidance counselors as deemed necessary. Faculty members are urged to maintain contact with parents through telephone calls, written notes, e-mail messages, and teacher web sites.

      Report Cards

      Report Cards (K-5)

      In each of the five elementary schools report cards and conference reports and are used to provide information to parents about their child’s academic performance and social/personal growth. The purpose of progress reports is to:

      • clearly report student progress toward the achievement of grade level standards, work habits, behavior and effort;
      • utilize the teacher’s extensive knowledge about each child;
      • reflect ongoing assessment occurring in the classroom;
      • focus attention of parents, teachers, and students on individual progress and growth; and
      • set meaningful goals for continuous progress.

      Parent-teacher conferences are scheduled in the fall of each year at the end of the first marking period. During that conference teachers will report on student progress and engage parents in a collaborative goal-setting process for each child. Report cards with be sent to parents at the conclusion of the second, third and fourth marking periods. Parent-teacher conferences may be scheduled during the spring months for additional face-to-face discussion of student progress. Additional conferences may also be scheduled by teachers and/or parents whenever a need arises during the school year.

      Report Cards (Middle School and High School)

      Report cards are issued to all students in grades 6-12 approximately every 45 days at the end of the 10th, 20th, 30th, and 40th weeks of the school year.

      Interim Progress Reports (Grades 6-12)

      Interim progress reports are posted to the secure parent portal for middle and high school students midway between each marking period. Generally, students will receive an interim progress report for all subjects except physical education.
      An interim progress report system listing specific department and general school-wide comments is utilized and is an important tool for sharing information about student performance and/or any changes in work habits, attitudes or grades of a student. The interim report is also an excellent tool by which teachers can recognize commendable work done by students.

      Adopted January 7, 2003
      Revised and Adopted April 8, 2014

      4714 Parent Conferences

      The Board of Education encourages parent conferences with teachers as effective means of communication between the home and the school. These conferences provide opportunity for open communication regarding pupil progress, instructional programs, goals and objectives, and administrative procedures.
      Parent conferences are an integral part of student assessment and grade reporting systems. Teachers have a responsibility to meet with parents to discuss student problems and progress. When a parent requests a conference with a teacher, the teacher shall make every effort to arrange a mutually agreeable time. Parent conferences should take place in a timely manner. Assistance in scheduling such meetings may be provided through the principal’s office (K-5) or through the house office at the Middle School or the student’s counselor at the High School.

      Adopted December 11, 2001
      Revised, Adopted April 9, 2013

      4720 Testing Programs

      The Board of Education believes that standardized testing programs can provide a meaningful source of information about the curriculum and overall student achievement. The Board, therefore, authorizes a program of testing to help accomplish the following objectives:

      1. to evaluate strengths and weaknesses of the current curriculum and methods of instruction;
      2. to provide a means of evaluating student growth through individual, interdistrict, and intradistrict comparisons;
      3. to provide teachers with diagnostic information which will enable them to better address the instructional needs of their students; and
      4. to provide a basis for longitudinal study of student achievement.

      Information gained through the use of testing programs will be used to design educational opportunities for students to better meet their individual and collective needs. The Board views this purpose to be a primary function of schools.
      The Board recognizes that tests provide only a limited source of information, and will therefore be used only in conjunction with all other information known about a student or to assist the student in improving his/her work.
      Records of the results of standardized tests shall be maintained in accordance with the Board’s policy on student records.

      Adopted February 11, 2003
      Adopted January 6, 2015

      4730 Homework

      Homework is recognized and encouraged as a valuable activity and as an appropriate extension of classroom instruction. Homework provides excellent opportunities for developing good study habits, providing for individual differences and abilities, and encouraging initiative on the part of the student. Homework may follow several formats based on daily assignments, long-term projects or other variations.

      Homework Guidelines

      1. Homework should be a properly planned part of the curriculum, extending and reinforcing the learning experience of the school.
      2. Homework should help children learn by providing practice in the mastery of skills, experience in data gathering and integration of knowledge, and an opportunity to remediate learning problems.
      3. Homework should help develop the student’s sense of responsibility by providing an opportunity for the exercise of independent work and judgment.
      4. The number, frequency, and degree of difficulty of homework assignments should be consistent within academic levels and departments, and based on the abilities, activities, and needs of the student.
      5. Homework should be clearly assigned. Appropriate and timely feedback should be provided to students about the quality of their work.
      6. Students experiencing difficulty with homework are encouraged to seek assistance.

      The Board of Education believes that parental support and encouragement of students completing their assignments is essential to making homework an integral part of the educational program. As a critical component of the home-school communication process, students and parents are encouraged to provide feedback to teachers about homework procedures and assignments.

      Adopted September 9, 2003
      Revised and Adopted October 22, 2013

      4730-R Homework Guidelines Grades

      K-5 Guidelines

      Homework is designed to give students an opportunity to practice the skills they have learned in class, to develop the habit of organizing and using time efficiently, to apply knowledge learned in school, and to prepare for further learning.

      Reading – children are expected to read or be read to at least 20 minutes a night.
      Mathematics – Students will receive some homework nearly every day. The recommended minimum time for math homework is:

      1st grade: 20-30 minutes/week

      2nd grade: 30-40 minutes/week

      3rd, 4th and 5th grades: 50-60 minutes/week

      Students should generally be able to complete their math homework independently.

      Teachers may assign homework in other content areas as necessary.
      Parents are urged to support the development of sound homework habits so that students complete their assignments to the best of their ability. Be positive and assist your child when necessary. If the homework assignments seem too difficult or completing assignments becomes a consistently stressful event, always consult with your child’s teacher.

      Reviewed September 9, 2003
      Revised and Reviewed May 7, 2013

      4730-R Farnsworth Middle School Homework Guidelines

      Purposes and Types of Homework

      Historically, the American education system has acknowledged homework as an adjunct to and extension of the instructional programs offered by its schools. Parents, teachers and students of the Farnsworth community agree that homework should be a meaningful extension of classroom instruction when its purpose is clear and the type of homework is appropriate to achieve the desired outcome.

      The purposes of homework at FMS are to:

      Apply and reinforce concepts and skills learned in the classroom
      Review content previously taught
      Provide independent practice
      Develop responsibility and the ability to study independently
      Learn time management and organizational skills
      Serve as an extension of work originating in class
      To provide background preparation for future class work
      To allow parents direct involvement and/or awareness in their child’s learning

      The types of homework at FMS can be:

      Practice assignments (math problems, vocabulary, spelling, etc.) Reading for preparation and/or exploration
      Writing assignments
      Research and information gathering
      Preparation for quizzes and tests
      Data collection and analysis
      Extension and creative assignments

      Homework should typically take one to two hours of focused study each weeknight. More time may be needed for advanced courses or special situations. If homework is consistently taking longer then two hours or is beyond the student’s capability, parents should contact the child’s teacher.
      The ultimate purpose of homework at FMS is to help our students become skilled, knowledgeable, independent and responsible learners who will achieve and succeed as they meet the demands of the higher grades and beyond.

      Reviewed September 9, 2003
      Reviewed and Reviewed May 7, 2013

      4730-R Guilderland High School Homework Guidelines

      In an effort to be consistent across all grade levels and departments, the Guilderland High School Building Cabinet has established the following guidelines pertaining to homework at the high school.

      • Homework at all times will be a meaningful activity and is intended to enhance the understanding of daily classroom lessons.
      • Students should attempt homework on the day it is assigned. This will allow students, if they do not understand the homework, to seek assistance from their teachers the next day of school prior to the assignment’s due date.
      • Generally speaking, students should expect to spend one to three hours on homework per evening. This varies according to the level of study, the types of courses enrolled in, and whether the homework is a daily assignment or a long-range research project. However, students taking honors and college level courses should expect that they will be required to complete more difficult and time-consuming assignments.
      • Every effort should be made by both teachers and supervisors to have consistency within a department for similar amounts of homework in the same course and level.
      • Homework will be reviewed by teachers and students during class in a timely and educationally beneficial manner.
      • Students will not be required to complete homework assignments solely over an extended vacation period. Ample time will be allowed prior to or following a vacation period for assignment completion. Extended vacations include Thanksgiving recess, holiday recess in December, February recess and spring recess.

      If parents have any questions or concerns regarding homework assignments, they should first contact their child’s teacher.

      Reviewed September 9, 2003
      Revised and Reviewed May 7, 2013

      4750 Promotion and Retention of Students

      Each child should experience both challenge and success from school activities. To this end, the district will make every effort to place each student in the most appropriate learning level for a successful educational experience.
      District curriculum guides indicate goals for achievement by the “average” student at each grade level. However, academic growth, like physical growth, does not take place at the same pace or time for all individuals. Certain students may achieve mastery in a shorter period, while others need additional time. Early identification and intervention, promotion and retention are methods of meeting the needs of such children. In Guilderland, retention will only be considered as a last resort, since extensive research indicates that retention increases the frequency of high risk behaviors, including disengagement from school and dropping out.
      The following guidelines shall govern student progression:

      Early Identification/Intervention

      Classroom teachers are expected to make every effort consistent with the district’s implementation of Response to Intervention (RtI) to identify early those students at risk of failing to achieve grade level expectations. The building principal and the parents/guardian must be notified promptly if a child is at risk of failing, and a special support program shall be designed for that child. Such support services may include, but are not limited to, individualized assistance before, during or after the school day; remedial classes; a change in instructional approach, and, where appropriate, referral to the Committee on Special Education for evaluation.

      Promotion/Retention

      Elementary schools. At the elementary level, students who meet/achieve grade level expectations in all subjects will be promoted. Students who do not make satisfactory progress in one or more basic subjects — Reading, English, Mathematics, Spelling, Social Studies and Science — shall have their cases considered on an individual basis and may, as a last resort be retained. Retention shall be limited to those situations where the best interest of the child is reasonably assured. Consideration should be given to the long-term negative impact of retention; the potential for short term gains should not outweigh these long term risks. Diligent effort shall be made to inform decisions and to use all available resources to determine the child’s appropriate placement.

      Middle schools. Students who pass all subjects but one shall have the failure evaluated and a determination made as to the reason for the failure. The student may be required to repeat the subject, but in typical cases shall be promoted with recommendation for either summer school or assignment to a lower academic ability group. The decision shall be arrived at by consensus from a case conference approach involving teacher, Principal and guidance counselor.
      Students who fail two subjects shall have their cases considered on an individual basis through a case conference approach described above.

      Senior High School. In general, promotion from one class to the next shall be contingent upon the passing of all required subjects and the accumulation of 4 or 5 units of credit at each level.

      Academic standards. Building Principals shall be responsible for ensuring that written standards for student progress at each grade level are available to parents and others upon request. Such academic standards are to be forwarded to the Superintendent of Schools each year.

      Retention. Should circumstances indicate that retention is be considered, the decision to retain shall be arrived at by consensus from a case conference approach involving the teacher, Building Principal, school psychologist, and parent/guardian. Factors to be considered include teacher recommendation; classroom achievement and attitude; standardized test scores; social and emotional development; results of the family conference; and, for identified students, recommendations by the Committee on Special Education while standardized test scores may be considered as part of the decision, they may not be the sole or primary factor in the decision. If a consensus cannot be reached, the decision of the Building Principal shall be final.

      Retention. Should circumstances indicate that retention is be considered, the decision to retain shall be arrived at by consensus from a case conference approach involving the teacher, Building Principal, school psychologist, and parent/guardian. Factors to be considered include teacher recommendation; classroom achievement and attitude; standardized test scores; social and emotional development; results of the family conference; and, for identified students, recommendations by the Committee on Special Education while standardized test scores may be considered as part of the decision, they may not be the sole or primary factor in the decision. If a consensus cannot be reached, the decision of the Building Principal shall be final.

      Adopted January 7, 2014
      Revised, Adopted June 17, 2014

      4770 Graduation Requirements

      In order for students to receive a high school diploma, the Principal must certify that the student has met the following requirements:

      1. The student has completed the requirements for a Regents Diploma, an Advanced Regents Diploma or Advance Regents Diploma with honors, as currently defined by the New York State Education Department and Board of Regents.
      2. Students must complete 23 units of school credit.
      3. Students who have been designated as having a disability must have completed requirements to receive a Regents Diploma, Advanced Regents Diploma, or Skills and Achievement Commencement Diploma as specified in his/her Individualized Education Program (IEP) and approved by the Committee on Special Education (CSE).

      A high school diploma will represent termination of the district’s responsibility to provide additional educational training opportunities as part of the regular day program. Any student working toward earning a Skills and Achievement Commencement Diploma will be informed in writing of his or her right to attend the public schools of the district until one of the following occurs:

      1. The student earns a high school diploma;
      2. The student attains the age of 21 prior to September 1 of a school year.

      Revised and Adopted September 10, 2013

      4771 Early Graduation

      The Board of Education recognizes that, in certain instances, students may benefit from early graduation. These students who wish to graduate from high school in less than the ordinary four-year sequence must receive permission from the High School Principal. To be eligible, the student must complete all prescribed graduation requirements. Furthermore, if a student wishes to complete the usual four-year course of studies in three years, then the student will be ranked with that graduating class.
      In regard to individual student requests, the following factors may be considered: the student’s grades, performance in school, the student’s future plans and benefits that would accrue to the student if the request for early graduation were to be approved. The High School Principal shall make the final decision on whether to grant permission after consultation with the individual student’s counselor, the student and parent(s).

      Adopted January 9, 2001
      Adopted April 27, 2010
      Reviewed and Adopted June 16, 2015

      4771-R Early Graduation Regulation

      A student may apply for early graduation when he/she:

      1. has the maturity, desire, and need to pursue further education, a career, or other worthwhile plans ahead of his/her scheduled graduation;
      2. is able to complete all required courses and acquire 23 credits by August 31 of that year; and
      3. has received the approval of his/her parents/guardians.

      In order to graduate early, a student must:

      1. submit a letter of intent as to the reason for acceleration and receive the recommendation of his/her counselor;
      2. be interviewed by the Principal to determine whether acceleration is appropriate and receive the Principal’s approval; and
      3. be enrolled in a full academic program which may not include more than two courses each in English and social studies in any one year at Guilderland High School.

      Reviewed December 19, 2000
      Reviewed April 27, 2010
      Reviewed June 16, 2015

      4772 Graduation Ceremonies

      The Board of Education of the Guilderland Central School District recognizes that students with disabilities, receiving special education and related or other services pursuant to an Individualized Education Program (IEP) as defined by the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) and the Commissioner’s Regulations at 200.1(zz), must be afforded an opportunity for participation in graduation ceremonies and activities with their high school graduating class, provided they qualify to receive a Skills and Achievement Commencement Credential (SACC) or a Career Development and Occupational Studies (CDOS) Commencement Credential within four years of commencing high school.

      Definition: High School Graduating Class – for purposes of this policy, a student’s high school graduating class is the twelfth grade class with which the student with a disability entered into ninth grade.

      Criteria: A student with a disability who has (1) completed four years of high school attendance; (2) is receiving special education and related services through an individualized education program (IEP) pursuant to state and federal law; and (3) will continue to receive such services between the ages of 18 and 21, may participate in a district-wide formal graduation ceremony and all related activities with their high school graduating class; provided (4) the student is eligible to be awarded either a skills and achievement commencement credential (SACC) or a career development and occupational studies (CDOS) commencement credential at the time of the graduation ceremony.
      A student may participate (and be identified as a participant in all formal notices and programs) with one school-district wide graduation ceremony. Any future graduation credentials earned will be issued; however the student will not be listed as a member of a graduating member of the school district in a second school-wide ceremony and graduation program announcement.
      Participation in graduation events and activities by a student with a disability with their designated high school graduating class is optional, not mandatory.
      A student with a disability’s participation in graduation ceremonies and events pursuant to this Policy shall not preclude or limit the student’s continuing eligibility to attend school in the District and to receive special education supports, related services and transition services while pursuing their local or regents diploma or other exiting credentials, provided the student remains a resident of the district, continues to be a student with a disability receiving services through an IEP, and has not completed the school year in which he or she turned 21.

      Annual Notification

      Annual written notification will be provided to all eligible students with disabilities and their parents or guardians regarding the District’s policy and procedures regarding graduation
      participation. Such notification will include a reference to this policy. The student and their parent(s)/guardian(s) shall be notified in the fall of the school year in which the student with a disability’s designated high school class will graduate. Such notice shall include applicable deadlines to advise parents and students of the date by which they must indicate their preference to participate in the ceremony with their designated high school class, as well as the manner in which such notice must be made.
      If the student is receiving special education and related and other services pursuant to their IEP within the District’s schools, it shall be the responsibility of the student’s school counselor and case manager to ensure that the student is informed of their rights, and if they request to participate with their designated class, notice of all graduation activities, including, but not limited to: gown fittings, rehearsals, awards ceremonies, and the graduation event itself.
      If the student is placed in an out-of-District program to receive special education and related services pursuant to their IEP, it shall be the responsibility of the Committee on Special Education Chairperson or their designee to ensure that the student is informed of his/her rights, and if they elect to participate in graduation with their designated class, notice of all graduation activities, including, but not limited to: gown fittings, rehearsals, awards ceremonies, and the graduation event itself.

      Adopted May 1, 2018

      4772-E Graduation Ceremonies-Exhibit

      Participation in Graduation Ceremony for Students with Disabilities

      The Guilderland Central School District permits a student with a disability who receives special education and related services through an Individualized Education Program (IEP) under state and federal laws to participate in the high school graduation ceremony and all related activities with their designated high school graduating class, provided that student is eligible to receive a skills and achievement commencement credential (SACC) or a career development and occupational studies credential (CDOS), even if they have not yet completed the required course of study to earn a local or regents high school diploma. A student’s designated high school graduating class is the class of twelfth grade (12th) students with which the student began ninth (9th) grade.

      Notification Deadline

      Timely notice is required to permit the student to receive all notices, information and to participate in events and activities along with their designated graduating class. Participation in graduation ceremonies and activities with your designated high school class is optional. Students with disabilities and/or their parents must provide notice of their preference or intent regarding participation on or by January 31st of the year that the ceremony will be held. Notice must be in writing and should be submitted to the Director of Pupil Personnel Services or his/her designee. If no notice is provided, the District will not plan for the student’s inclusion in the graduation ceremony and events. If you have a question regarding your student’s eligibility to qualify to participate in graduation ceremonies with their designated class, please contact the Committee on Special Education Chairperson for assistance.

      Right to Continue Until Age 21 or Receipt of Local or Regents Diploma

      A student with a disability’s participation in graduation ceremony and events and their receipt of a SACC or a CDOS credential does not automatically limit or preclude the student’s right to continue their education and to receive special education, related services or transition services pursuant to their IEP. Such students remain eligible to receive special education and related services until the student completes the school year in which they turn 21; the student is awarded a local or regents high school diploma (whichever comes first) provided the student continues to meet all other eligibility criteria related to residency and disability; or the student otherwise exits school as permitted by law.
      Please refer to District Policy # 4772 for further information.

      Reviewed: May 1, 2018

      4773 Credential Options for Students with Disabilities

      The District is committed to ensuring that students with disabilities are provided appropriate opportunities to earn a Regents or Local Diploma or other exiting Commencement Credential in accordance with the Commissioner’s Regulations. To this end, graduation and transition plans shall take into account the various pathways available to these students.
      Where appropriate, the District will also award other diplomas and/or credentials that are authorized by and specified in Commissioner’s Regulations, to students with disabilities who earn them.
      The Committee on Special Education will determine the appropriate credential(s) for students with disabilities to pursue and will assure students meet the criteria for such credentials. The high school counselors of students with disabilities will monitor each student’s plan and program to assure the student enrolls in required courses and completes all requirements for the credential he/she has been designated by the CSE to receive.
      Students with disabilities will be provided access to the required courses and testing programs needed for achieving the diploma and/or commencement credentials available to them until they have earned a regular high school diploma or through the end of the school year in which they reach age 21, whichever is earlier.

      Adopted March 13, 2007
      Revised October 4, 2016
      Reviewed May 1, 2018

      4777 Participation in Commencement Ceremony

      The Board of Education recognizes that participation in a commencement ceremony differs from the issuance and receipt of a diploma. The issuance of a diploma indicates that a student is in good standing and has successfully met all local and state requirements to be graduated from high school.
      The Board of Education authorizes the extension of an invitation to participate in the District’s annual commencement ceremony to all students who, by the graduation date in June, are in good standing and who have successfully completed all requirements for the receipt of a diploma. “Good standing” refers to the student’s disciplinary record. The commencement ceremony is a public celebration which is traditionally held in June.
      In addition, the Board of Education authorizes the extension of an invitation to participate in the District’s annual commencement ceremony to all students who are in good standing and who are in a position to complete all graduation requirements prior to August 31st of that year. In general, “being in a position to complete all graduation requirements,” implies that the student has no more than two (2) courses to complete.
      This policy will be published in the high school student handbook which is made available to all students each year.

      Note: Policy added.
      Adopted January 9, 2001
      Adopted April 27, 2010
      Revised, Adopted December 13, 2011
      Revised, Adopted February 2, 2016
      Reviewed May 1, 2018

      4850 Animal Dissection Opt-Out Policy

      The Board of Education recognizes that the study of living things is essential to effective instruction in the life sciences. The primary goals for demonstrations and investigations involving animals are to achieve an interest in and an understanding of the life processes, to demonstrate biological principles, and to teach proper care and handling of animals. Therefore, the Board requires that any such instructional activities, investigations, and projects be well-planned and adequately supervised, and be conducted with a respect for life and an appreciation of the health and safety of both animals and students.
      The Board also recognizes that some students have a moral or religious objection to dissection or otherwise harming or destroying animals. In accordance with state law, students shall have the right to opt out of dissection activities, provided that the student performs an alternative project approved by the student’s teacher. The objection must be substantiated in writing by the student’s parent or guardian.
      At the start of the school year, teachers of courses that include animal dissection shall give notice to the students in those classes of their opt-out rights and responsibilities under the law and this policy. Such notice shall be shared with parents of those students, and also be available upon request in the school office.

      Adopted June 6, 2011
      Adopted February 2, 2016

      5010 Harassment (including Sexual Harassment) and Discrimination

      Purpose

      Guilderland Central School District believes in the dignity of the individual and recognizes the rights of all people to equal employment opportunities in the workplace. In this regard, Guilderland Central School District is committed to a policy of protecting and safeguarding the rights and opportunities of all people to seek, obtain and hold employment without being subjected to unlawful harassment or discrimination in the workplace. The Guilderland Central School District’s policy is to provide an employment environment free from discrimination and harassment based on any characteristic, including but not limited to a person’s actual or perceived: race, color, weight, national origin, ethnic group, religion, religious practice, disability, sex, sexual orientation, or gender (including gender identity and expression). Guilderland Central School District prohibits discrimination based on any characteristic, including but not limited to a person’s actual or perceived: race, color, weight, national origin, ethnic group, religion, religious practice, disability, sex, sexual orientation, or gender (including gender identity and expression) and will not tolerate any form of unlawful discrimination or harassment. Guilderland Central School District will take all steps necessary to prevent and stop the occurrence of unlawful discrimination and/or harassment in the workplace.
      All employees, including, but not limited to, Guilderland Central School District officials and supervisory personnel, are responsible for promoting a work environment free from prohibited discrimination and harassment. All employees will be held responsible and accountable for avoiding or eliminating inappropriate conduct that may give rise to a claim of prohibited discrimination and/or harassment. Employees are encouraged to report violations to one of the Compliance Officers listed in Section 7 of this Policy and on the District’s website, https://www.guilderlandschools.org, in accordance with the Complaint Procedure set forth in this Policy. Officials and supervisors must take immediate and appropriate corrective action when instances of prohibited discrimination and/or harassment come to their attention to ensure compliance with this Policy.
      Each employee is assured, pursuant to Section 4 of this Policy, that retaliation against an individual who makes a complaint or report in good faith under this Policy is absolutely prohibited and constitutes, in and of itself, a violation of this Policy.
      Any questions regarding the scope or application of this Policy should be directed to one of the Compliance Officers listed in Section 7 of this Policy and on the District’s website, https://www.guilderlandschools.org.

      A. Scope of Policy: This Policy applies to all Guilderland Central School District employees and all personnel in a contractual or other business relationship with Guilderland Central School District, including, for example, applicants, temporary or leased employees, independent contractors, vendors, consultants, and volunteers. Depending on the extent of Guilderland Central School District’s exercise of control, this Policy may be applied to the conduct of non-employees with respect to unlawful harassment and/or discrimination of Guilderland Central School District employees in the workplace. This Policy applies with equal force on District property as it does at District-sponsored events, programs, and activities. Actual or perceived harassment based upon any characteristic, including but not limited to a person’s actual or perceived: race, color, weight, national origin, ethnic group, religion, religious practice, disability, sex, sexual orientation, or gender (including gender identity and expression).
      B. Policy Objectives: By adopting and publishing this Policy, the Guilderland School District Board of Education intends to:

      (1) notify employees about the types of conduct which constitute discrimination or harassment prohibited by this Policy;
      (2) inform employees about the complaint procedures established by the District which enable any employee who believes (s)he is the victim of discrimination or harassment to submit a complaint which will be investigated by the District;
      (3) clearly advise all supervisory staff, administrators, and employees that discriminatory treatment based on any characteristic, including but not limited to a person’s actual or perceived: race, color, weight, national origin, ethnic group, religion, religious practice, disability, sex, sexual orientation, or gender (including gender identity and expression) is strictly prohibited; and
      (4) notify all employees that the District has appointed Compliance Officers who are specifically designated to receive complaints of discrimination based on
      any characteristic, including but not limited to a person’s actual or perceived: race, color, weight, national origin, ethnic group, religion, religious practice, disability, sex, sexual orientation, or gender (including gender identity and expression). and ensure compliance with this Policy.

      Note: The Compliance Officers designated to receive and investigate complaints shall be appointed and identified by the Board of Education each year at its Annual Organizational Meeting. The names and office locations of each new Compliance Officer designated to receive and investigate complaints in subsequent years will be listed on the District website: https://www.guilderlandschools.org.

      Adopted August 18, 2009
      Revised, Adopted June 17, 2014

      5010-R Harassment (including Sexual Harassment) and Discrimination Regulations

      Definitions

      A. Prohibited Discrimination

      Prohibited discrimination of employees can take the form of any negative treatment of an employee, by either a District employee or official, or a third party engaged in school-sponsored activities which: (a) negatively impacts an employee’s employment opportunities and/or employment benefits; and (b) is based upon the employee’s characteristics, including but not limited to a person’s actual or perceived: race, color, weight, national origin, ethnic group, religion, religious practice, disability, sex, sexual orientation, or gender (including gender identity and expression). Prohibited discrimination of employees can also take the form of harassment even where there is no tangible impact upon the employee’s employment opportunities and/or employment benefits. The phrase “prohibited discrimination” as used in this Policy includes all forms of “prohibited harassment” (defined below).
      B. Prohibited Harassment

      Harassment can constitute a form of prohibited discrimination under this Policy if it is unwelcome, offensive, and has the purpose or effect of unreasonably interfering with an individual’s work performance, or creating an intimidating, hostile or offensive working environment. Such harassment of employees is prohibited by this Policy if it is based upon any characteristic, including but not limited to a person’s actual or perceived: race, color, weight, national origin, ethnic group, religion, religious practice, disability, sex, sexual orientation, or gender (including gender identity and expression). In this regard, individuals subject to this Policy should be mindful that conduct or behavior that is acceptable, amusing or inoffensive to some individuals may be viewed as unwelcome, abusive or offensive to others.
      C. Prohibited Behavior

      While it is impossible to list all of the possible forms of prohibited harassment, the following is a list of examples of conduct that may constitute harassment:

      1. Using slurs or derogatory terms based on any characteristic, including but not limited to a person’s actual or perceived: race, color, weight, national origin, ethnic group, religion, religious practice, disability, sex, sexual orientation, or gender (including gender identity and expression).
      2. Telling derogatory jokes or stories based on any characteristic, including but not limited to a person’s actual or perceived: race, color, weight, national origin, ethnic group, religion, religious practice, disability, sex, sexual orientation, or gender (including gender identity and expression).
      3. Displaying graffiti or other derogatory or insulting writings based on any characteristic, including but not limited to a person’s actual or perceived: race, color, weight, national origin, ethnic group, religion, religious practice, disability, sex, sexual orientation, or gender (including gender identity and expression).
      4. Making degrading comments about a person and/or his or her appearance based on any characteristic, including but not limited to a person’s actual or perceived: race, color, weight, national origin, ethnic group, religion, religious practice, disability, sex, sexual orientation, or gender (including gender identity and expression).
      5. Sending, distributing, or displaying paper or electronic images or electronic data (e.g., internet sites or e-mails) that are pornographic, profane, lewd, or inappropriate for a professional environment.
      6. Demeaning or criticizing an individual because of his or her or any characteristic, including but not limited to a person’s actual or perceived: race, color, weight, national origin, ethnic group, religion, religious practice, disability, sex, sexual orientation, or gender (including gender identity and expression).
      7. Sabotaging, damaging, or interfering with an individual’s work because of that individual’s characteristics, including but not limited to a person’s actual or perceived: race, color, weight, national origin, ethnic group, religion, religious practice, disability, sex, sexual orientation, or gender (including gender identity and expression).

      8. Threatening or intimidating an individual because of his or her or any characteristic, including but not limited to a person’s actual or perceived: race, color, weight, national origin, ethnic group, religion, religious practice, disability, sex, sexual orientation, or gender (including gender identity and expression).

      As set forth above, this list is not intended to be all-inclusive. Furthermore, while a single incident of these types of behavior may not create a hostile working environment, if such behavior is severe, persistent or pervasive, or if submission to such conduct is made either explicitly or implicitly a term or condition of employment, such conduct constitutes prohibited discrimination and/or harassment.

      NOTE: This Policy does not regulate conduct which is unrelated to an individual’s characteristics, including but not limited to a person’s actual or perceived: race, color, weight, national origin, ethnic group, religion, religious practice, disability, sex, sexual orientation, or gender (including gender identity and expression). Although Guilderland Central School District intends to create a respectful working environment that is free from inappropriate conduct or unfair treatment, this Policy does not apply to such conduct or treatment absent a relation to an individual’s characteristics, including but not limited to a person’s actual or perceived: race, color, weight, national origin, ethnic group, religion, religious practice, disability, sex, sexual orientation, or gender (including gender identity and expression). In other words, this Policy is not designed to resolve personality disputes between colleagues or between an employee and his or her supervisor, unless such dispute is related to the employee’s characteristics, including but not limited to a person’s actual or perceived: race, color, weight, national origin, ethnic group, religion, religious practice, disability, sex, sexual orientation, or gender (including gender identity and expression).

      Section 2: Policy Enforcement

      A. Complaint Procedure for Employees

      1. Notification Procedure: Prompt reporting of complaints is encouraged so that timely and constructive action can be taken before relationships become strained. Reporting of all perceived incidents of prohibited discrimination and/or harassment is encouraged, regardless of the offender’s identity or position. An employee or other individual who feels aggrieved because of harassment or discrimination has several ways to make his or her complaint known:

      (a) An aggrieved person who feels comfortable doing so should directly inform the person[s] engaging in the harassment or discrimination that such conduct or communication is offensive and must stop.

      NOTE: Confronting the offender is NOT required. All employees have the right to file a good faith complaint without first communicating with the offender.

      (b) An aggrieved person who does not wish to communicate directly with the individual whose conduct or communication is offensive, or who has engaged in direct communication with the offending party which has been unavailing, shall contact a Compliance Officer listed in Section 7 of this Policy, or the Superintendent of Schools.
      (c) An aggrieved person alleging harassment or discrimination by anyone with supervisory authority, or alleging failure of supervision to take immediate action on the individual’s complaint, shall contact one of the Compliance Officers, or the Superintendent of Schools.
      (d) An aggrieved person who is a member of a collective bargaining unit may also be entitled to file a grievance through the collective bargaining grievance procedure depending on the particular terms of the governing collective bargaining agreement. Such filing may not, in all cases, trigger an investigation pursuant to this Policy. Consequently, aggrieved persons are encouraged to simultaneously utilize the Complaint Procedure set forth herein, where appropriate.

      2. Making a Complaint: All complaints should be in writing. All employees are encouraged to use the District’s “Complaint of Alleged Discrimination” form. A copy of this form is attached to this Policy. Additional complaint forms can be obtained from any Principal’s office within the District, or from a Compliance Officer, with no questions asked. Because an accurate record of the allegedly objectionable behavior is necessary to resolve a complaint of prohibited discrimination, all complaints should be reduced to writing. If an employee has any questions about or difficulty with filling out the complaint form, (s)he can obtain assistance from any one of the Compliance Officers. All complaints should include: the name of the complaining party, the name of the alleged offender(s), date of the incident(s), description of the incident(s), names of witnesses to the incident(s), and the signature of the complaining party.
      Once the complaining party has completed and dated a complaint, with or without the assistance of one of the District’s Compliance Officers, the written complaint should be personally delivered to one of the District’s Compliance Officers or placed in their mailbox.
      If for any reason an employee is uncomfortable submitting a written complaint to a Compliance Officer located in the building where that employee is generally assigned, the written complaint may be submitted, either by hand delivery or mail, to any one of the Compliance Officers listed in Section 7 below, to the Superintendent of Schools who will then advise a Compliance Officer.
      Complainants are expected to cooperate with the District’s investigation procedures by providing all relevant information relating to the complaint, as are other supervisory and non-supervisory employees having relevant or related knowledge or information.

      B. Time for Reporting a Complaint Prompt reporting of all complaints is strongly encouraged. All employees should be aware that appropriate resolution of discrimination complaints and effective remedial action oftentimes is possible only when complaints are promptly filed. Furthermore, complaining parties should be aware that statutes of limitations may constrain the time period for instituting legal actions outside of this Policy.
      C. Confidentiality and Privacy In recognition of the personal nature of discrimination complaints and the emotional impact of alleged discrimination, the District shall keep complaints as confidential as is consistent with a thorough investigation, applicable collective bargaining agreements, and other laws and regulations regarding employees. For the protection of all individuals who make complaints or are accused of prohibited discrimination, every witness interviewed during an investigation under this Policy will be advised of the confidentiality requirement and instructed not to discuss the complaint, the investigation, or the persons involved. To the extent complaints made under this Policy implicate criminal conduct, the District may be required by law to contact and cooperate with the appropriate law enforcement authorities.

      D. Acknowledgment of Complaints Upon receipt of a written complaint, the Compliance Officer, Building Principal, or Superintendent of Schools should endeavor to contact promptly the complainant to confirm that the written complaint has been received. If the complainant does not receive such confirmation promptly, (s)he is encouraged to file a second written complaint or contact a Compliance Officer or the Superintendent. The purpose of this acknowledgment procedure is to ensure that all written complaints are received by authorized individuals, carefully processed and promptly investigated.

      Section 3: Investigation Procedures

      A. Timing of Investigations: The District will promptly investigate all allegations of discrimination and harassment prohibited by this Policy. The District will also attempt to complete investigations under this Policy promptly. The length of the investigation will depend upon the complexity and particular circumstances of each complaint.

      B. Method of Investigation: Investigations may be conducted by a District Administrator/Supervisor, the District’s Compliance Officers, the District’s legal counsel, and/or other impartial persons designated by the Superintendent of Schools. The primary purposes of all investigations under this Policy will be to determine:
      (1) Did the conduct complained of occur?
      (2) Did the conduct complained of violate this Policy? and
      (3) What remedial or preventative steps, if any, are recommended?

      Investigations may include: fact-finding interviews, document review, depositions, observations, or other reasonable methods. The District’s investigators should pursue reasonable steps to investigate each complaint in a thorough and comprehensive manner. Any notes, memoranda, or other records created by the District employees or agents conducting an investigation under this Policy shall be deemed confidential and privileged to the extent allowed by law.
      C. Notification to Complaining Party and the Accused Party: The Superintendent, or his or her designee, shall notify the complainant of the outcome of the investigation promptly. Such notification shall be in writing, include a brief summary of the factual findings and, wherever possible, shall include a summary of remedial measures that have been or will be taken by the District.
      While reasonable efforts will be made to inform the complaining party about the outcome of investigations, the District will nonetheless consider the privacy rights of all parties involved in disseminating information obtained during and through the investigation.

      The Superintendent, or his or her designee, shall promptly notify the person accused of violating this Policy, whether a violation of this Policy was found and what remedial measures, if any, will be taken by the District.
      D. Remedial Measures The Guilderland Central School District’s primary goal in responding to complaints of prohibited discrimination under this Policy is prevention. This Policy is intended to prevent all forms of unlawful discrimination and harassment in the District and put an end to any prohibited discrimination that is found to have occurred. While disciplinary action may be appropriate in certain instances, punitive measures are not the exclusive means for responding to prohibited discrimination. During the pendency of any investigation being conducted pursuant to this Policy, remedial measures may be taken if appropriate and necessary.
      Any individual who is found to have engaged in prohibited discrimination, or conduct which may be prohibited by this Policy, may receive education, training, counseling, warnings, discipline, or other measures designed to prevent future violations of this Policy. Disciplinary action may include: warnings, suspension, or discharge from employment consistent with any applicable collective bargaining agreement(s). Any third party found to have engaged in discrimination or harassment of an employee may be barred from District property.

      Section 4: Prohibition Against Retaliation and Abuse of the Policy

      Retaliation is strictly prohibited by this Policy and by law against anyone who in good faith reports a suspected violation of this Policy, who assists in making such a complaint, or who cooperates in a harassment or discrimination investigation. Retaliation includes any adverse action in response to a complaint being made.
      Complaints of retaliation should be brought directly to a Compliance Officer, Building Principal or the Superintendent of Schools. Such complaints will be promptly investigated. If retaliation is found, the person retaliating may be subject to corrective action up to and including termination from employment consistent with any applicable collective bargaining agreement(s), or in the case of a non-employee, an appropriate remedy up to and including termination of the business relationship.
      Knowingly making a false complaint or report of harassment or discrimination is strictly prohibited by this Policy. An individual who in bad faith makes a false complaint or report of harassment or discrimination may be subject to disciplinary action up to and including termination in accordance with legal guidelines, District policy, and any applicable collective bargaining agreement(s).

      Section 5: Record Keeping

      The District shall maintain a written record of all complaints of discrimination and/or harassment prohibited by this Policy for a period of at least six years. The District shall also document the steps taken with regard to investigations, as well as conclusions reached and remedial action taken, if any. The District shall also maintain these documents for, at a minimum, six years.
      The District records regarding alleged discrimination shall be maintained separate and apart from personnel records.

      Section 6: Questions

      Any questions by employees of the District about this Policy or potential discrimination should be brought to the attention of one of the District’s Compliance Officers or the Superintendent of Schools. The names, addresses, and telephone numbers of the District’s Compliance Officers are listed in Section 7 of this Policy and on the District’s website: https://www.guilderlandschools.org.

      Section 7: Compliance Officers

      • Name: Dr. Lin A. Severance
      • Office Location: District Offices
      • Telephone Number: 456-6200, ext. 3117
      • Mail Box Location: District Offices
      • Name: Mr. Neil T. Sanders
      • Office Location: District Offices
      • Telephone Number: 456-6200, ext. 3125
      • Mail Box Location: District Offices

      Section 8: Effective Date and Policy Dissemination

      The effective date of this Policy shall be July 6, 2009. The Superintendent of Schools shall ensure that this Policy is adequately disseminated and made available to all employees of the District. Notification of this Policy shall be published at the beginning of each school year, to all new District employees, and on the District’s website, https://www.guilderlandschools.org In addition, copies of this Policy and Complaint Form shall be maintained in the office of each Compliance Officer; the office of each Building Principal; each library in the District; and the District Policy Book.
      Upon the effective date of this Policy, the provisions of this Policy shall supersede and replace all prior District policies and regulations regarding employee discrimination and harassment, and related complaint procedures.

      Reviewed June 23, 2009
      Revised June 17, 2014

      5020 Equal Educational Opportunities

      All students should be encouraged to develop and achieve to their potential. The district, therefore, shall provide every student with equal educational opportunities regardless of race, weight, color, creed, sex, sexual orientation, gender (identity or expression), national origin, language, religion or religious practice, age, economic status, or disability.
      An educational environment will be fostered that provides equal educational opportunity for all students. Educational programs and services will be designed to meet the needs of all students and shall not discriminate based upon any of the above-mentioned factors. 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.
      The Superintendent of Schools shall be responsible for implementing this policy.

      Adopted November 28, 2006
      Revised and Adopted May 7, 2013

      5020.2 & 9110.5 Racial Harassment of Students, Racial Harassment of Staff

      The Board of Education is committed to safeguarding the rights of all individuals within the school district to participate in an environment that is free from racial* discrimination, including racial harassment. The Board recognizes that racial harassment can originate from a person of the same or different race of the victim including peers, employees, board members or any individual or group, who foreseeably might come in contact with a person(s) on school grounds or at school-sponsored activities.
      Racial harassment consists of different treatment on the basis of race and is recognized in different forms including, but not limited to:

      1. when the district’s employees or agents, acting within the scope of official duties, treat a person(s) differently than others solely on the basis of race; or
      2. when the education environment is not kept free from discrimination because the harassing conduct interferes with or limits the ability of an individual or group to participate in or benefit from the services, activities or privileges provided.

      The Board also prohibits any retaliatory behavior against complainants, or any witnesses.

      Any person or group who believes that he/she/it has been subject to racial harassment should report the alleged misconduct immediately, pursuant to 5020.2-R or 9110.5-R) so that corrective action, up to and including discharge of an employee or suspension of a student, may be taken. The complainant shall not be discouraged from reporting an incident of alleged racial harassment. In the absence of such complaint, the Board or Superintendent, upon learning of, or having reason to suspect, the occurrence of any racial harassment, will ensure that an investigation is promptly commenced by appropriate individuals.
      The Superintendent of Schools is directed to develop and implement specific procedures on reporting, investigating and remedying allegations of racial harassment. Such procedures are to be consistent with any applicable provisions contained in the district’s policy manual, collective bargaining agreements, the tenure laws as well as other Federal and State laws on racial harassment.
      The Superintendent shall establish training programs for students and employees to raise awareness of the issues surrounding racial harassment and to implement preventative measures to help reduce incidents of racial harassment.
      A copy of this policy and its accompanying regulation are to be distributed to all personnel and students and posted in appropriate places.

      *For the sake of simplicity and clarity, the term “race” shall be used throughout this policy to refer to all forms of discrimination prohibited by Title VI — that is, race, color, and national origin.
      Note: Policy added
      Adopted June 6, 1995
      Re-adopted March 23, 2010

      5020.3 Students with Disabilities Pursuant to Section 504

      The Board of Education affirms its compliance with those sections of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 dealing with program accessibility.
      Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act prohibits discrimination against qualified individuals with disabilities in federally assisted programs or activities solely on the basis of disability. The District shall make its program and facilities accessible to all its students with disabilities.
      The District shall also identify, evaluate and extend to every qualified student with a disability under Section 504 a free, appropriate public education, including modifications, accommodations, specialized instruction or related aids and services, as deemed necessary to meet their educational needs as adequately as the needs of nondisabled students are met.
      The District official responsible for coordination of activities relating to compliance with Section 504 is the Superintendent of Schools. This official shall provide information, including complaint procedures, to any person who feels his/her rights under Section 504 have been violated by the District or its officials.
      This policy shall remain in full force and effect unless modified by the Board of Education.

      Last Revised: May 2009
      Adopted: January 19, 2010
      Revised: October 4, 2016

      5030 Hazing Policy

      Joining groups is a basic human need. Forming a sense of identity and belonging is a major developmental task for students. In any group activity, building a spirit of team comradery should be an important goal. The Guilderland Central School District enacts this policy to ensure and maintain a safe learning environment for students that is free from hazing. Hazing activities of any type are inconsistent with the educational goals of the school district and are prohibited at all times.

      Definition

      A. “Hazing” means committing an act against a student or group of students, or coercing a student into committing an act, that creates a risk of harm to a person, in order for the student to be initiated into or affiliated with a student organization, or for any other purpose. The term hazing includes, but is not limited to:
      1. Any humiliating or dangerous activity expected of a student to join a group, regardless of the student’s willingness to participate (conduct has the potential to endanger the mental or physical health or safety of a student).
      2. Any hurtful, aggressive, destructive or disruptive behavior such as but not limited to striking, stripping, sleep deprivation, confinement in a restricted area, calisthenics or other activity that subjects the student to a risk of harm or that adversely affects the mental or physical health or safety of the student.
      3. Any use or abuse of tobacco, alcohol, drugs or other substances that subjects the student to a risk of harm or that adversely affects the mental or physical health or safety of that student.
      4. Any activity that intimidates or threatens the student with ostracism; subjects a student to mental stress, embarrassment, shame or humiliation; or adversely affects the mental health or dignity of the student or group of students.
      5. Any activity that causes or requires the student to perform a task that involves violation of state or federal law or of school district policies and regulations.
      B. “Student organization” means a group, club, or organization having students as its primary members or participants. It includes grade levels, classes, teams, activities or particular school events. A student organization does not have to be an official school organization to come within the terms of this definition.

      Staff Responsibilities

      Administrators, coaches, teachers, volunteers, or any district employee shall be alert to possible situations, circumstances or events that constitute hazing. Any such person, who receives a report of, observes or has other knowledge or belief that such conduct is occurring shall alert the building principal, School Resource Officer, Director of Interscholastic Athletics, Assistant Director, teacher, counselor, social worker, advisor, assistant/house principal or coach immediately. Administrators, coaches, teachers and/or any district employee shall not plan, direct, encourage, aid in, engage in, permit, condone or tolerate hazing. A person who engages in an act that violates school policy or law shall be subject to discipline for that act.

      When and Where Policy Applies

      This policy applies to behavior that occurs on or off school property, before, during and after school hours, as it relates to a school activity.

      Formal Reporting Procedures

      Any person who suspects that he/she has been a victim of hazing or any person with knowledge or belief of conduct that may constitute hazing shall report the alleged act(s) immediately to the appropriate school official that might include building principal, Director of Interscholastic Athletics, Assistant Director, teacher, counselor, social worker, advisor, assistant/house principal, coach or any member of the school staff. A copy of all written documents from any investigation shall upon completion be forwarded to the District Office, Administrator for Human Resources.

      School District Action

      A. Upon receipt of the formal complaint or the report of alleged acts of hazing, school district officials or a third party designated by the school district will undertake an investigation.
      B. If necessary, the school district will take immediate steps to protect the complainant, reporter, students, or others pending the completion of investigation of hazing.
      C. The investigation will be completed as soon as possible and a report will be filed with the building principal and the Superintendent upon completion of the investigation. Appropriate action will be taken by the school district against any student, coach, volunteer or any other district employee who is found to have violated this policy. Such action may include but is not limited to a warning, mandatory counseling, suspension, expulsion, or discharge. Depending on the severity of the infraction, law enforcement officials may be involved as well.

      Reprisal

      The school district will discipline or take appropriate action against any student, teacher, administrator, volunteer, coach, or any school employee who retaliates against a person who makes a good faith report of alleged hazing or against any person who testifies, assists, or participates in a proceeding or hearing relating to such hazing. Retaliation includes, but is not limited to, any form of intimidation, reprisal or harassment.

      Dissemination of Policy

      This policy will be published in the School Code of Conduct, included in the annual school calendar, distributed to all employees, and posted in locker rooms and gymnasiums. The policy will be reviewed by the Athletic Director with coaches at the pre-season meeting held in the fall, winter, and spring. Also, each coach is asked to return the signed statement to the Athletic Director acknowledging an awareness and commitment to uphold this policy.

      Cross Reference: District’s Student Code of Conduct
      Adopted April 23, 2002
      Adopted January 10, 2012

      5035 Student Complaints and Grievances

      under Title IX, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act or the Americans with Disabilities Act)
      With respect to State and federal laws relating to discrimination in any form, the Board of Education believes it is necessary that students be made aware of the behavior that is expected of them, as outlined in district policies on school conduct and discipline. Students shall also be given an opportunity to be heard on complaints and grievances they may have.
      A student filing a complaint or grievance alleging that there is an action affecting them which is prohibited by Title IX and/or Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act or the Americans with Disabilities Act shall be provided with information regarding the prompt and equitable resolution of the complaint or grievance. Furthermore, a student shall have the right to present complaints and grievances in accordance with the procedure free from coercion, interference, restraint, discrimination or reprisal.
      Building Principals are responsible for ensuring that appeal procedures are incorporated into discipline codes, explained to all students, and provided to all parents on an annual basis.

      Annual Notification

      At the beginning of each school year, the district shall publish a notice of the established grievance procedures for resolving complaints of discrimination due to sex and/or disability to parents/guardians, employees, eligible students and the community. This policy will be listed on the district website and referenced in the school calendar sent to Guilderland families. The public notice shall:

      1. inform parents, employees, students and the community that educational programs are offered without regard to race, weight, color, creed, sex, sexual orientation, gender (identity or expression), national origin, language, religion or religious practice, age, economic status, or disability;
      2. provide the name, address and telephone number of the person designated to coordinate activities concerning discrimination due to sex and/or disability; and
      3. be included in announcements, bulletins, catalogues, and applications made available by the district.

      The Superintendent of Schools shall establish regulations and procedures for presenting problems or appealing decisions which affect individual students, in accordance with applicable statutory requirements, and for the resolution of complaints or grievances which may affect the student body.

      Adopted October 25, 2005
      Revised and Adopted May 7, 2013

      5035-R Student Complaints and Grievances Regulation

      Definitions

      1. Grievant shall mean a student who alleges that there has been a violation of Title IX or Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act or the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) statute or regulations which affect him/her.
      2. Grievance shall mean any alleged violation of Title IX, Section 504 or the ADA statute or regulations.
      3. Compliance Officer shall mean the employee designated by the Board of Education to coordinate efforts to comply with and carry out responsibilities under Title IX, Section 504 or the ADA.
      4. Representative shall mean any person designated by the grievant as his/her counsel or to act in his/her behalf.

      Individual complaints and grievances shall be handled in accordance with the following guidelines:

      1. For informal conciliation, students should confer with the appropriate teacher or school personnel to achieve prompt resolution. Students may appeal to the highest authority in the school building, i.e., the Building Principal, who has the final determination on all such matters.
      2. For resolution of matters where appeal procedures are prescribed by statute, e.g., student suspensions, the prescribed course of action will be followed.
      3. On issues affecting the student body, secondary level students may address the student government or student council in order to resolve such matters. Students may be afforded a conference with the Building Principal in accordance with the rules and procedures established by the student government.
      4. The resolution of student complaints alleging any action prohibited by Title IX, Section 504 or the ADA shall be dealt with in the following manner:

      Stages

      A. Stage 1 – Compliance Officer

      Within 20 school days after the events giving rise to the grievance, the grievant shall file a grievance in writing with the Compliance Officer. The Compliance Officer may informally discuss the grievance with the grievant and shall promptly investigate the complaint. All employees of the school district shall cooperate with the Compliance Officer in such investigation.

      2. Within 15 school days of the receipt of the grievance, the Compliance Officer shall make a finding in writing that there has or has not been a violation of Title IX, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act or the ADA. In the event the Compliance Officer finds that there has been a violation, he/she shall propose a resolution of the complaint.

      If the grievant is not satisfied with the finding of the Compliance Officer, or with the proposed resolution of the grievance, the grievant may, within 10 school days after he/she has received the report of the Compliance Officer, file a written request for review by the Superintendent.

      B. Stage II – Superintendent of Schools

      1. The Superintendent may request that the grievant, the Compliance Officer, or any member of the school district staff present a written statement to him/her setting forth any information that such person has relative to the grievance and the facts surrounding it.
      2. The Superintendent shall notify all parties concerned as to the time and place when an informal hearing will be held where such parties may appear and present oral and written statements in support of their position in the case. Such hearing shall be held within 15 school days of the receipt of the appeal by the Superintendent.
      3. Within 10 school days of the hearing, the Superintendent shall render his/her determination in writing. Such determination shall include a finding that there has or has not been a violation of Title IX, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act or the ADA, and a proposal for equitably resolving the complaint.
      4. If the grievant is not satisfied with the determination of the Superintendent, the grievant may, within 10 school days after its receipt, file with the Clerk of the Board of Education, a written request for review by the Board.

      C. Stage III – Board of Education

      1. When a request for review by the Board has been made, the Superintendent shall submit all written statements and other materials concerning the case to the President of the Board.
      2. The Board shall notify all parties concerned of the time and place when a hearing will be held. Such hearing will be held within 15 school days of the receipt of the request of the grievant. At the hearing, the record will be reviewed. Each party may submit a written summary statement in support of their arguments at the time of the hearing but the decision by the Board of Education will be based upon the record as presented to the superintendent.
      3. The Board shall render a decision in writing within 10 school days after the hearing has been concluded.

      Distribution of the Grievance Procedure

      A copy of the procedure shall be distributed to all employees and to all students or their parents/guardians or listed on the school district website and subsequently referenced in appropriated faculty and student handbooks. A copy of this procedure shall be available for public inspection at reasonable times with the District Clerk or at the office of the Compliance Officer.

      Notes: 1. School days are defined as those times when students or faculty are in attendance.
      2. Any complaints submitted within ten (10) days of the end of the school year or later may be carried over into the next school year. However, every effort will be made to follow
      the procedures within the time frame established and to address the complaint as soon as possible.

      Reviewed October 11, 2005
      Reviewed April 23, 2013

      5040.1 Preventing Cyberbullying and Cyberthreats

      Our highest priority as a school district is to provide a safe school environment where all students and employees are treated with respect and dignity, and are free from bullying, intimidation, and harassment. Only in this type of environment can students thrive and strive to reach their academic potential. Anyone with a mobile phone or internet connection can be a target for cyberbullying. Communication technologies may provide a means of sending messages anonymously. In addition, there is even greater concern that bullies can reach a wider audience compared to conventional bullying situations as defined in Board of Education policy #5040 and the accompanying regulation. Consistent with this policy is the approach that awareness and education are the keys to preventing cyberbullying and cyberthreats. Technology is a potential avenue available to students to intimidate, harass, and bully other individuals.
      Cyberbullying means using the Internet, cellular phones or other electronic communication to engage in the mistreatment of others, use of derogatory language or being cruel to others by sending or posting harmful, hurtful or derogatory material.
      Cyberthreat means online material that threatens or raises concerns about violence against others, suicide, or other self-harm. There are two (2) kinds of cyberthreats: direct threats and distressing materials. Direct threats are actual threats to hurt another person, engage in self-harm or to commit suicide. Distressing material is online material that includes but is not limited to clues indicating that the person is emotionally upset, and that the person is contemplating hurting another person, himself or committing suicide. Distressing material can also be interpreted as impersonating someone else or revealing very private information which could embarrass or humiliate the individual targeted.
      Cyberbullying or cyberthreatening material, may take the form of text or images posted on web sites, blogs or transmitted via email, discussion groups, message boards, chat rooms, instant messages, cellular phones, or other emerging technology.
      The use of the District’s Internet system, cellular phones on school district property, cellular phones not on school district property, or the use of an Internet system not owned or operated by the District to bully or harass students, faculty and staff is prohibited and may result in discipline.
      Off-campus cyberbullying or cyberthreats — regardless of the form in which the message is transmitted — endangering the health, welfare or safety of students, faculty or staff with the District, or adversely affecting the educational process is prohibited.
      Any student or parent who believes that the student has been subjected to cyberbullying or to cyberthreats within the meaning of this policy must report the bullying or threats to a teacher or an administrator immediately so that assistance and support can be provided. Any faculty or staff member who receives or is made aware of a cyberthreat or other inappropriate message, or becomes aware of potential cyberbullying or cyberthreats must notify their supervisor or building principal immediately. The building principal will investigate the incident and take the appropriate disciplinary actions pursuant to the District’s Code of Conduct and District Regulation 5040-R, Bullying Prevention, including involvement of police agencies, as warranted.

      Adopted January 8, 2008
      Re-adopted February 9, 2010
      Revised, Adopted January 19, 2016

      5040.1-R Prevention of Cyberbullying and Cyberthreats Regulation

      Cyberbullying and cyberthreats can occur on and off school property and during school and non-school hours. Even if a student receives a threatening message at home, such message can directly impact the psychological and emotional well being of that individual. In addition, a message sent electronically can often refer to the school environment. In both situations, cyberbullying and cyberthreats become a problem that must be addressed. As a district, school officials should not hesitate to intervene on behalf of students who may be the victims of cyberbullying or cyberthreats. Mobile, internet, and wireless technologies have increased the pace of communication and brought many benefits, but at the same time, their popularity provides opportunities for misuse. School staff, parents, and students have to be constantly vigilant and work together to prevent this form of bullying and should it occur, take the necessary steps to address the problem directly. The building principal shall immediately take the appropriate actions pursuant to the District’s Code of Conduct.
      Listed below and on the following page are some suggestions and strategies to assist students who may be the victims of cyberbullying and/or cyberthreats as well as guidance for school resource officers, teachers, administrators, and parents to assist victims when problems may occur. (Source: www.antibullying.com)

      1. Students should be advised never to send any bullying or threatening messages. Remember, anything written and sent can be read by others.
      2. Students who feel they are being bullied or threatened by e-mail, text or online, must be encouraged to talk to someone they trust, particularly an adult – a teacher, counselor, coach or parent.
      3. To the extent possible, any bullying e-mails, text messages or images should be kept and saved to help trace and identify the aggressor. Always print the information so that a hard copy has been established as evidence.
      4. The victim should make a note of the time and date when the bullying messages or images were sent, and note any details about the sender. The service provider (mobile phone company, your internet provider) should be contacted to help identify the alleged cyberbully.
      5. Victims can use blocking software which will block instant messages from certain people or use filters to block e-mails from specific e-mail addresses.
      6. Victims should not reply to bullying or threatening text messages or e-mails as this could make matters worse. It also lets the bully know that they have found a “live” phone number or e-mail address.
      7. Students should never give out their personal details online – if in a chatroom, participants need to watch what they say about where they live, their school, e-mail address, etc. This information can enable someone harm students.
      8. Students need to be reminded not to forward abusive texts or e-mails or images to anyone.
      9. Never give out passwords to your mobile or e-mail account.

      Cyberbullying and cyberthreats experienced by a child or young adult may not be immediately evident to a parent or teacher, but it is highly intrusive and the hurt being caused can be very severe. Because students are often very adept in learning new technology and such interaction between individuals in the cyber environment is ever changing — students, school personnel and parents must take steps to ensure that emerging technology is used safely. By working together and lending support, action can be taken if a student is being cyberbullied or cyberthreatened regardless of where the problem may be originating. Helping young people understand how actions can cause harm to others, especially when it occurs anonymously, is one of the many challenges that this policy regulation seeks to address.
      A copy of this policy and accompanying regulations and procedures are to be distributed to parents, staff and students and posted on the district web site and appropriate places throughout the school district. Additionally, parents, staff and students will be advised of this policy through educational programs and written materials.

      Reviewed December 11, 2007
      Reviewed February 9, 2010
      Reviewed January 19, 2016

      5061 Social Service Trained Facility Dogs

      The school district supports the use of social service trained facility dogs by teachers or other qualified school personnel (“Owner”) for the benefit of students subject to the conditions of this policy.
      A “Social Service Trained Facility Dog” is a dog that has been individually trained and certified to work with its owner to provide emotional support, well-being, comfort, or companionship to school district students. For the purposes of this policy, Social Service Trained Facility Dogs are not “service animals” as that term is used in the American with Disabilities Act.
      Social Service Trained Facility Dogs are personal property of the teacher or employee and are not owned by the school district.

      Social Service Dog Standards and Procedures

      The following requirements must be satisfied before a social service dog will be allowed in school buildings or on school grounds:

      Requests

      All individuals who wish to bring a social service dog to school must submit a written request to the superintendent of schools or his/her designee for review and approval.
      An individual wishing to apply for a district sponsored social service trained facility dog in training, must complete an application that will be reviewed by a committee established by the superintendent for that purpose.

      Training and Certification

      The owner must submit the American Kennel Club’s Canine Good Citizen or Social Service Dog International Certification for Social Service Trained Facility Dogs. The certification must remain current at all times that the Social Service Trained Facility Dog is present in Guilderland school buildings.

      Health and Vaccination

      The social service dog must be clean, well groomed, in good health, housebroken, and immunized against diseases common to dogs. The owner must submit proof of current licensure from the local licensing authority and proof of the social service dog’s current vaccinations and immunizations, and annual physical from a licensed veterinarian. The owner must also maintain and provide proof of treatment for parasites such as flea, tick, and heartworm. Records will be kept on file in the district office.

      Control

      A social service dog must be under the control of the teacher or school employee through the use of a leash or other tether unless the use of a leash or other tether would interfere with the social service dog’s safe, effective performance of its work or tasks.

      Identification

      The social service dog must have appropriate identification clearly indicating that it is a social service dog.

      No Disruption

      The social service dog must not disrupt the educational process by barking, seeking attention, or engaging in any other disruptive behavior.

      Health and Safety

      The social service dog must not pose a health and safety risk to any student, employee, or other person at school.

      Supervision and Care of Social Service Trained Facility Dogs

      The owner is solely responsible for the supervision and care of the social service dog, including any feeding, exercising, and clean up while the animal is in a school building or on school property. The school district is not responsible for providing any care, supervision, or assistance for a social service trained facility dog. Social Service dogs that are part of the Guilderland Central Schools social service dog program are required to have designated “co-handlers” whose role is to assist with the care of the dogs and their integration into the entire school community. Medical and nutritional needs of dogs that are part of the Guilderland Social Service Trained Facility Dog program are the sole responsibility of the owner. The school district shall provide “working and release gear” for each district sponsored social service facility dog and each handler. The district shall be responsible for each district sponsored facility dog’s membership in Therapy Dog International.

      Authorized Area(s)

      The owner shall only allow the social service dog to be in areas that are authorized by school district administrators.

      Reporting

      Each handler shall provide a report to the Director of Pupil Personnel Services no less than two times per year a log of activities in which the district sponsored social service dogs participated to provide emotional support, well-being, comfort, or compassion to school district students or others for crisis-based support.

      Insurance

      Individuals who request to bring a social service trained facility dog into the school district that is not part of the district-sponsored program must submit a copy of an insurance policy that provides liability coverage for the social service trained facility dog while on school property.
      Employees who own dogs that are part of the district-sponsored program are covered under the provisions of the school district general liability insurance.

      Exclusion or Removal from School

      A social service trained facility dog may be excluded from school property and buildings if a school administrator determines that:

      1. A handler does not have control of the social service trained facility dog;
      2. The social service trained facility dog is not housebroken;
      3. The social service trained facility dog presents a direct and immediate threat to others in the school; or
      4. The animal’s presence otherwise interferes with the educational process.

      The owner shall be required to remove the social service trained facility dog from school premises immediately upon such a determination.

      Allergic Reactions

      The owner of the animal will be required to remove the animal to a different location designated by an administrator if any student or school employee assigned to a classroom where a social service trained facility dog is permitted has a known allergy or suffers an allergic reaction to the dog.
      This policy shall also be applicable to social service trained facility dogs in training that are accompanied by a bona fide trainer.

      Adopted April 21, 2015
      Revised, Adopted March 7, 2017
      Revised, Adopted July 5, 2018

      5100 Comprehensive Attendance Policy

      School Attendance Policy

      Attendance is a critical factor in school success for our students. Consistent school attendance, academic success and school completion have a positive correlation. School attendance is both a right and a responsibility in New York State. Children have the right to attend school between the ages of 5 and 21, and are mandated to attend between the ages of 6 and 16. Parents are expected to make sure that their children attend school on a regular basis.
      Although accurate record keeping and analyses of data are critical, the success of the school attendance program is highly correlated by the quality of the school environment. School culture, or environment, is the overall physical and psychological atmosphere in a school: the behaviors, attitudes and beliefs exhibited by all school staff, students, parents and community. Such a culture is accepting and inclusive with opportunities for all to learn. This is the focus of our core values and district priorities.
      Everyday interactions and activities in a school are designed to encourage students to attend and prevent school failure. Guilderland schools should exhibit the following factors as evidence of a safe, healthy learning environment:

      • A positive physical, social and psychological environment;
      • The presence of strong adult role models in students’ lives;
      • Respectful and nurturing interactions between adults and students;
      • A high level of student connectedness; and
      • An enriching curriculum which engages students in learning.

      Guilderland schools promote healthy youth development in a safe, protective atmosphere. Bonding to school (being connected to the people and the place) is a major factor in determining success.
      Parents are encouraged to notify the school of any ongoing medical issues which may affect attendance.
      The goal of our school attendance policies is to encourage students to come to school each day ready to learn and to do their best. The purposes for attendance taking in schools include:

      • To know the whereabouts of every student for safety and other reasons.
      • To determine the district’s average daily attendance for State Aid reimbursement.
      • To verify that individual students are complying with Education Law in relation to compulsory attendance.
      • To identify individual and group attendance patterns in order to provide attendance improvement programs and services.
      • To designate if absences are excused or unexcused.

      In order to meet the Regents’ goals of raising student achievement to higher levels and closing the gaps in student achievement, it is imperative that students regularly attend schools to receive instruction. In order to ensure effective school attendance programs, the N.Y.S. Education Department has a regulatory initiative (Education Law, Section 3205) to require schools to:

      • Collect data through accurate attendance record keeping; and
      • Analyze attendance data to identify individual and group patterns in order to provide programs and services that will assist each student to be successful in meeting higher academic standards.

      Notice

      Analyze attendance data to identify individual and group patterns in order to provide programs and services that will assist each student to be successful in meeting higher academic standards.

      • distribute the attendance procedures in the Staff Handbook annually;
      • distribute a summary of the attendance procedures in the Parent Handbook annually;
      • provide a summary of the attendance procedures in the August/September issue of the school newsletter
      • provide parent(s)/guardian(s) with a summary of the attendance procedures with the Health/Emergency Cards distributed at the beginning of each school year; and
      • provide a copy of the attendance procedures to community members upon request.

      Overall Objectives

      The objectives of Guilderland Central School’s Attendance policy are as follows:

      1. To ensure the maintenance of an adequate record verifying the attendance of all students K-12 at instruction in accordance with Education Law, Section 3205.
      2. To implement and evaluate a practical mechanism for each school at elementary, middle and high school level to account to parents for the whereabouts of their children throughout the school day.
      3. To record pupil attendance at all scheduled periods of instruction or supervised student activities for safety and school management.
      4. To identify individual or group attendance patterns to design improvement efforts.

      The strategies for accomplishing the objectives of the Comprehensive Attendance Policy at each level (elementary grades K-5, middle school grades 6-8 and high school grades 9-12) follow.
      Effective implementation of any attendance policy requires that all participants are informed and fully understand the purpose, procedures and consequences of the attendance policy. The Board of Education will establish procedures to ensure that parents, students, teachers and administrators are fully informed of the elements of this policy.

      Adopted June 25, 2002
      Revised and Adopted May 3, 2011
      Adopted April 21, 2015

      5100-R1 Comprehensive Attendance Policy Regulation –  Elementary (Grades K-5)

      Preamble

      Every student has a right to educational opportunities. Attendance policies are based on the principle that regular school attendance maximizes each student’s interaction with his or her teachers and peers and is a major component of academic success. Positive parental involvement and commitment leads to higher student achievement, regular school attendance and improved student attitudes and behavior.
      Comprehensive attendance procedures that provide for the early identification of attendance problems and effective methods to address them are most likely to succeed. Successful implementation of any attendance procedure requires cooperation among all members of the educational community, including parents, students, teachers, administrators and support staff.

      Notice

      Effective implementation of any attendance procedures requires all participants to be informed and to understand its purpose and procedures. To ensure that students, parents, teachers and administrators are notified of the comprehensive attendance policy, each elementary school will implement the following procedures:

      • distribute the attendance procedures in the Staff Handbook annually;
      • distribute a summary of the attendance procedures in the Parent Handbook annually;
      • provide a summary of the attendance procedures in the August/September issue of the school newsletter;
      • provide parent(s)/guardian(s) with a summary of the attendance procedures with the Health/Emergency Cards distributed at the beginning of each school year; and
      • provide a copy of the attendance procedures to community members upon request.

      Strategies/General Procedures/Data Collection

      Since attendance is extremely important, especially during the elementary school years, to the academic growth of children and the development of positive attitudes toward school,
      parent(s)/guardian(s) need to make every effort to have their child(ren) attend school on a daily basis. If a student will be absent more than two (2) days, parent(s)/guardian(s) are encouraged to call the school to request work. Absences due to illness cannot be avoided, but long absences for other reasons may be unexcused absences, and should be avoided if at all possible.
      It is strongly recommended that families do not take vacations while school is in session as it may affect a student’s overall performance at school. Student/family vacations are not recognized as excused absences. A great deal of learning takes place during the school day. Learning is not only reflected in written work or work that can be sent home, but primarily takes place during hands-on activities, discussions and interactions between teachers and students in the classroom. Teachers are not expected to provide assignments in advance as many times it is difficult to predict the pace at which the class will be learning new information. Even if assignments are given, it doesn’t reflect or take the place of learning experiences at school. There is a strong possibility that extended absences could negatively affect a student’s performance and cause undo stress upon the student when he/she returns.
      To ensure that teachers and administrators maintain accurate attendance records in compliance with the regulations of the Commissioner of Education, each elementary school will implement the following procedures:

      • Parent(s)/guardian(s) will call the school office or school nurse to report a student’s absence.
      • Parent(s)/guardian(s) will provide a written note upon a student’s return to school stating the reason(s) for a student’s absence, and/or tardiness and/or early departure.
      • Staff will review the attendance procedures and clarify individual roles for implementation at the beginning of each school year with accurate attendance information maintained by each classroom teacher.
      • The Board of Education will designate a staff member who is required to sign an oath declaring the accuracy of the register and compliance with the policy, who makes entries in the Register of Attendance to record student presence, absence, tardiness and early departure.
      • All classroom teachers (not students) are required to take attendance daily. The names of students who are absent will be sent to the Main Office of each school by approximately 8:15 a.m. each day.
      • Parent(s)/guardian(s) may be contacted to verify student absences.
      • The official elementary school day is 7:50 a.m. – 2:05 p.m.
      • Students who arrive at school after 8:00 a.m. are considered as tardy, except due to a school bus delay, and will report to the Main Office immediately upon arrival.
      • Students who leave school prior to 1:50 p.m. are considered as early departure, and will report to the Main Office to sign out for dismissal.
      • An attendance sheet will be generated and available for verification on the same day.
      • The nature of an absence, tardy and/or early departure – Excused* or Unexcused will be recorded and monitored.
      • Excused absences are defined by N.Y.S. Education Law as absences due to personal illness, illness or death in the family, impassable roads or weather, religious observance, quarantine, required court appearances, attendance at health clinics, approved college visits, approved cooperative work programs, military obligations, or other such reasons as may be approved by the Commission of Education.
      • The principal will monitor the Register of Attendance as well as initiate appropriate actions to address patterns of unexcused absences, tardiness and/or early departures.
      If a student’s absences are deemed unexcused, action may be taken to support the student/family such as contacting the parent(s)/guardian(s) by telephone and/or in writing; and if a student’s absences, tardiness or early departures are of a chronic nature to a degree that may interfere with success in school academically and/or socially, action may be taken to support the student/family such as a consultation with the school social worker, a conference with the principal or other appropriate staff, and/or a referral to the Child Study Team as appropriate.

      Home Instruction

      Pupils may be considered for home instruction if a parent is anticipating that the child will be absent for consecutive days exceeding two (2) weeks due to illness or medical reasons. This instruction can begin as soon as the parent contacts the principal’s office. The application for home instruction may be obtained in a principal’s office. The application must be submitted through the Special Education Office (Room 509A) with final approval made by the Office of Special Programs. For physical impairments necessitating home instruction, a doctor’s prescription explaining the impairment and duration of absence from school must accompany the application.

      Reviewed June 25, 2002
      Revised May 3, 2011

      5100-R2 Comprehensive Attendance Policy Regulation – Farnsworth M.S.

      Preamble

      Every student has a right to educational opportunities that will enable the student to develop his or her fullest potential. Attendance policies are based on the principle that regular school attendance maximizes the student’s interaction with his or her teachers and peers and is a major component of academic success. Improved school attendance procedures that provide for the early identification of attendance problems and effective methods to address them are most likely to succeed. Successful implementation of any attendance procedure requires cooperation among all members of the educational community, including parents, students, teachers, administrators and support staff.

      Notice

      Effective implementation of any attendance procedure requires all participants to be informed and to fully understand its purpose, procedures and the consequences of noncompliance. To ensure that students, parents, teachers and administrators are notified of and understand this procedure, the following procedures shall be implemented.

      Strategies

      Student Notice

      • Farnsworth Middle School will provide each student with a copy of the attendance procedures via the FMS Student/Parent Handbook at the beginning of each school year. The handbook will be sent home with the student in the student’s First Day Envelope. Parents and students will sign and return the envelope to indicate that they have received the handbook.
      • An orientation session will be held for students upon adoption of the procedures and at the beginning of each school year.
      • If a student cuts class or is absent without excuse, a designated staff person will review the attendance procedures with the student.

      Parent/Guardian Notice

      • Middle School Administrators will inform parents of the attendance policy and procedures at the beginning of each school year. The information will stress the importance of student attendance, parental responsibility for their child’s attendance, and the distinctions between excused absences, unexcused absences and tardiness.
      • Farnsworth Middle School will provide each parent with a copy of the attendance procedures via the FMS Student/Parent Handbook at the beginning of each school year. The handbook will be sent home with the student in the student’s First Day Envelope. Parents and students will sign and return the envelope to indicate that they have received the handbook.
      • Parents(s) guardian(s) will contact their child’s house office at Farnsworth Middle School to report the child’s absence on the day of the absence.
      • After three (3) days, if the school has not been notified by either phone message or written note of their child’s absence, the absence will be considered unexcused.
      • Where a student cuts class or is absent without excuse, designated staff members will notify the student’s parent(s)/guardian(s) and review the attendance procedures.

      Staff Notice

      • All staff (no students) are required to take attendance each class period and should maintain accurate attendance information.
      • Before the attendance period ends (during homeroom), staff will take attendance in GradeSpeed.
      • A student arriving late to any class is expected to have a pass.
      • A student arriving without a pass should not be sent out of class to get one. Rather, the student should enter class and be responsible to provide a pass by the end of the school day. A student who is unable to provide a pass for being late is subject to teacher’s policy regarding lateness.
      • Each staff member should outline with students specific procedures/consequences
        regarding late arrival to class.
      • Before implementing disciplinary procedures, the staff member should check the attendance sheet, check with the nurse and house secretary to verify a student’s absence. When possible, check with the student upon his/her return.
      • Staff will meet at the beginning of each school year to review the attendance procedures.

      General Procedures/Data Collection

      • Staff will take attendance in GradeSpeed before the attendance period ends (during homeroom).
      • An attendance list shall be generated and made available to school staff via e-mail for review and verification.
      • The nature of the absence (excused, unexcused or tardy) shall be recorded in GradeSpeed, on the student’s record and on the attendance list for the purpose of New York State mandated record keeping and as resources to monitor student attendance.
      • Attendance should be taken during each class period and student absences should be verified against the attendance sheet.
      • A student will be deemed tardy when entering school after 8:45 a.m. except if due to a school bus delay. The student must sign-in at the house office.
      • Any discrepancy should be verified with the house secretary, the school nurse and/or the student. Discrepancies may be verified by phone with parent(s)/guardian(s).
      • When additional information is received from a student during a student/staff conference that requires corrections to be made to a student’s attendance record, such correction will be made immediately. Notice of such a change will be sent to the appropriate school personnel (i.e., homeroom teachers, attendance monitor, etc.).
      • If a child’s absences are deemed unexcused, action may be taken such as contacting the parent(s)/guardian(s) in writing, initiating disciplinary action at school, filing a Person In Need of Supervision (PINS) petition, or other disciplinary measures. The student will be given due process in dealing with the issue of unexcused absences.
      • Attendance data will be analyzed periodically to identify patterns or trends in student absences. Written notification will be sent to parent(s)/guardian(s) after 10, 15, and 20 absences or tardies are accrued.
      • Gradespeed facilitates the notification of the House Principals and Guidance staff when students reach the designated accrued absences. This notification will then initiate the generation of a letter to the parent(s)/guardian(s), as well as a request for a meeting with the interdisciplinary team of which the student is a part. The team meeting with the parents will seek to assist the parent(s)/guardian(s) and student in addressing this issue by providing intervention strategies to be put in place. The meeting may also generate a behavior contract with positive and negative incentives.
      • Periodic “hall sweeps” will be conducted to identify students who are cutting class. Hall monitors will move about the building to ensure that all students are appropriately directed to class or other areas as designated by a pass.

      Disciplinary Procedures

      1. If a student arrives late to class without a pass or cuts class, it is within the discretion of the teacher/staff member to determine whether the student needs to stay during activity period to make up missed work. Parent(s)/guardian(s) contact should be made. Repeated infractions may result in detention or other disciplinary action.
      2. Truancy from school will result in an in-school suspension.
      3. Chronic truancy may result in the filing of a PINS (Person In Need of Supervision) petition by the school and/or parent(s)/guardian(s) and or other intervention resources.

      Attendance/Grade Policy

      • Farnsworth Middle School recognizes an important relationship between class attendance and student performance. Consequently, each marking period no more than 10% of a student’s grade will be based on classroom participation (*see below).
      • Students are expected to attend all scheduled classes. Consistent with the importance of classroom participation students are expected to complete all missed work as a result of the absence. Any absence from class which is not made up shall result in the loss of points from the student’s class participation grade for the marking period.
      • If a student will be absent more than two (2) days, parent(s)/guardian(s) are encouraged to
        call the house secretary by 11:00 a.m. to implement a homework request.
      • In implementing the procedures set forth above, students who are unable to attend a class on a given day/period due to their participation in a school sponsored activity (i.e., music lesson, field trip, etc.) must arrange with their teachers to make up any missed work.
      • Students with excused absences (**see below) will be given the opportunity to make up and test and/or turn in a late assignment for inclusion in the calculation of the performance portion of their final grade. Make-up opportunities must be completed by a date specified by the student’s teacher for the class in question.
      • Farnsworth staff strongly recommend that families do not take vacations while school is in session as it may affect the student’s overall performance at school. Student/family vacations are not recognized as excused absences. Staff are not always able to provide assignments in advance as many times it is impossible (not that a teacher is unwilling) for teachers to predict the pace at which the class will be learning new information. Class discussions and group learning cannot be assigned. Laboratory experiments cannot usually be done at home or while a child is on vacation. A parent or guardian should expect his/her
      • child to stay after school upon their return to make up work that could not be preassigned. Even if assignments are given, there is no guarantee that a child will understand instructional content. There is a strong possibility that absences could negatively affect the child’s grade and cause undo stress upon the child when he/she returns. Parent(s)/guardian(s) are expected to ensure that all necessary resources are provided to students in order for them to complete assignments. Upon the student’s return, the student will have two (2) weeks to complete any missed assignments, while maintaining current curriculum requirements.
      • C Students who are truant (i.e., class cutting, chronic tardiness, babysitting, birthday parties, etc.) may not be afforded the opportunity to make up missed assignments.

      *For the purposes of this procedure, class participation means that a student is in class, ready to work

      **Excused absences are defined as absences due to personal illness, illness or death in the family, impassable roads or weather, religious observance, quarantine, required court appearances, attendance at health clinics, approved college visits, approved cooperative work programs, military obligations, or such other reasons as may be approved by the Commissioner of Education.

      Home Instruction

      Pupils may be considered for home instruction if a parent is anticipating that the child will be absent for consecutive days exceeding two (2) weeks due to illness or medical reasons. This instruction may begin as soon as the parent contacts the Special Education Office. An application for home instruction may be obtained in a house office. The application must be submitted through the Special Education Office (Room 509A) with final approval made by the Office of Special Programs. For physical impairments necessitating home instruction, a doctor’s prescription explaining the impairment and duration of absence from school must accompany the application.

      Reviewed June 25, 2002
      Revised May 3, 2011

      5100-R3 Comprehensive Attendance Policy Regulation – Guilderland H.S.

      Philosophy

      Studies have shown the importance of the relationship between student attendance and achievement. The educational experiences that occur in the classroom milieu are considered an integral and essential part of the learning process. Absences disrupt the continuity of this process both for the individual student and for the class collectively. The benefits of lectures, discussion, cooperative group activities, teacher-student and student-student interactions are lost to those students who are absent.
      The administration of Guilderland High School expects students and parents be aware of and accept the importance of the direct and incidental learning and growth that take place in the classroom. It is reasonable, then, to expect that all students and parents will acknowledge the importance of attendance by minimizing absences from school and classes.

      Objectives

      The objectives of the Guilderland High School Attendance Policy support the tenet that improved school attendance increases student achievement.

      These objectives are as follows:

      • To maintain accurate attendance records
      • To reduce the number of unexcused absences from school or class
      • To improve the average daily attendance
      • To improve communication among the stakeholders in the attendance process; parents, students, teachers and administration
      • To improve accountability in tracking individual students
      • To identify students with attendance problems and bring resources together to address the students’ individual needs
      • To provide incentives for good attendance
      • To establish and implement fair and equitable consequences for poor attendance

      Strategies

      Effective implementation of any attendance policy requires all participants to be informed and to fully understand its purpose, procedures and the consequences of non-compliance. To ensure that students, parents, teachers and administrators are notified and understand this policy, the following procedures shall be implemented:

      Attendance Procedures

      General Guidelines

      1. The Daily Attendance will be taken each day at the beginning of BLOCK #2. This will be 9:05 -9:15 on AC Days and 9:05 – 9:25 on BD Days.
      2. The process begins with the BLOCK #2 teacher/advisor filling out a 2-part NCR DAILY ATTENDANCE REPORT. The information on this form must include date, Homeroom Number and teacher/advisor name. The teacher/advisor will complete the form by recording the NAME AND STUDENT ID NUMBER of any student not present in BLOCK #2 on that day.
      3. The teacher/advisor will also collect from the students any ABSENCE NOTES that they may have to be turned in.
      4. The teacher/advisor will then put the DAILY ATTENDANCE REPORT along with any ABSENCE NOTES into the ATTENDANCE ENVELOPE provided and place the envelope into
      a folder outside of the classroom door to be picked up by the Attendance Office personnel.
      5. Any student who needs to be excused from school during BLOCK #1 will have to report to the appropriate Attendance Office for an EARLY DISMISSAL SLIP before going to his/her BLOCK #1 class. The attendance Office will issue the student a pass to their BLOCK #1 class. The BLOCK #1 classroom teacher will use this pass to verify the students’ whereabouts and make the appropriate revisions to their class attendance records.
      Students and teachers should be aware that the Attendance Office will issue EARLY DISMISSAL SLIPS before school ONLY to those students who need to be dismissed prior to 9:05. All other sign-outs will be taken care of during the BLOCK #2 Attendance Process.
      6. Attendance is to be taken by each classroom teacher during each block.

      Notification:

      The following steps will be implemented as part of the awareness strategies of the Guilderland High School Attendance Policy:

      • A summary of the attendance policy will be included in the students’ Agenda Handbook.
      • Advisory teachers will reinforce the importance of the attendance policy on the first day of school.
      • Classroom teachers will discuss with students the relationship between the attendance policy and their individual grading policies.
      • The attendance policy will be discussed as part of the freshman assembly on the first day of school.
      • A summary of the attendance policy will be mailed home to parents as part of a summer mailing.
      • The attendance policy will be reviewed at the 9th Grade Parent Night in September.
      • The implications of the attendance policy will be discussed at the September faculty meeting.

      Implementation

      The following are strategies for meeting the stated objectives of the Guilderland High School Attendance Policy:

      • Parents will be strongly encouraged to “call in” students who will be absent from school
      • The names of the students reported absent from school will be forwarded to the attendance office by 11:00 a.m. each day
      • The attendance office will make phone calls to the parents of those students appearing on the attendance report to confirm “excused” vs. “unexcused” absences.
      • Any absence confirmed as unauthorized by the parent and/or administrator will be considered “truant”
      • A list of those students with “truant” absences will be generated at the end of each week and distributed to teachers
      • A notice of “unexcused” absences will be sent home to parents every 5 weeks.
      • All “unexcused” absences will become final one week after these reports are sent home.
      • Any class missed as a result of a “truant” absence may be considered a class cut.
      • Coaches and advisors will monitor student attendance and reinforce the philosophy of the Guilderland High School Attendance Policy.
      • The “late sign-in” process will be done at the attendance office.
      • Any tardy to school without a parent note will be considered “unexcused.”

      Excused and Unexcused Absences

      The following will be considered EXCUSED absences, tardiness and early departures from class or school provided that the ATED (Absence, Tardy, Early Dismissal) is accompanied by parent (or administrative) confirmation:

      • Personal illness
      • Medical appointment
      • Religious observance
      • College visitations
      • Court appearance or legal proceedings
      • Death in the family
      • Death of friend
      • Impassable roads
      • Music lessons
      • Field trips
      • Military obligations
      • Appointments with guidance counselor, social worker or administrator

      The following will be considered UNEXCUSED absences, tardiness and early departures from school or class:

      • Vacations
      • Senior skip day
      • Oversleeping
      • Missing school bus
      • Truancy
      • Jobs
      • Fire calls
      • Babysitting (child care)
      • Hunting, fishing or recreation
      • ANY ABSENCE, TARDY OR EARLY DISMISSAL WITHOUT PARENT CONFIRMATION

      Coding and Persons Responsible

      1. Each student will be coded as “unexcused” until the nature of the absence has been determined.
      2. The absence will be coded as “excused” after parent confirmation; either written or verbal; that the absence meets the criteria for “excused” absences defined by Guilderland High School Attendance Policy.
      3. Any absence from school or class confirmed as “unexcused” by the parent will be coded as “truant.”
      4. Any tardy to school without a parent note will be coded as “unexcused.”
      5. The attendance clerical staff and the administrator in charge of attendance will assume responsibility for maintaining accurate attendance records.

      Pupil Attendance and Course Credit

      The Guilderland High School Building Cabinet has explored the philosophy and practicality of a minimum attendance requirement and at this time is not pursuing the link between course credit and attendance.

      Incentives and Consequences

      The following are identified as incentives to offer those students who demonstrate perfect, or improved attendance:

      • Attendance Awards at Senior Award Night
      • Attendance Awards at Class Awards Breakfasts
      • Attendance Points through the Student Recognition Program
      • Expand the Student Recognition Program to investigate possible additional incentives
      • Honor Passes
      • Merchandise awards from area merchants

      These incentives will sunset after June 2011.

      The following are identified as possible consequences for poor, or truant attendance records:

      • Extended detentions for class cuts or truancy
      • Saturday detention
      • Restricted participation in after school activities
      • Students may forfeit the opportunity to make up any class work, test, or quiz missed as a result of a “truant” absence from class.
      • If an absence remains “unexcused” for more than three weeks, the student may forfeit the opportunity to make up any class work, test or quiz missed as a result of that “unexcused” absence.
      • In the case of an “unexcused” absence due to a vacation, the student will be required to make up any class work, quiz or test missed within 5 days of their return to school.

      Intervention and Notification

      Intervention will take place on two levels while addressing two distinct objectives.

      1. Level #1 is aimed at the general population of students who maintain an attendance record between 85% and 99%.
      a. Phone calls to the parent generated by the daily attendance process.
      b. 2 week notices of “unexcused” absences sent home.
      c. Direct contact with parents by the attendance office or administrator in regard to any unacceptable ATED.
      d. Any student is eligible for home tutoring after they have been absent for 10 consecutive days due to an acute medical condition.
      2. Level #2 is a more extensive intervention plan directed toward those students who demonstrate an attendance rate of less than 85%. The following assessment and intervention plan will be implemented:
      a. The ACT (Administrative Coordination Team) Committee (comprised of administrators, counselors, School Resource Officer, nurses and social workers) will use attendance data to identify students with poor attendance records.
      b. The Guidance Counselor will work with the Social Workers to assess the reason(s) that the student misses so much school.
      c. If there are medical issues the guidance counselor will request medical documentation from the medical provider and with the help of the Career Center, coordinate getting work sent home and tutoring if appropriate.
      d. If there are mental health issues, a social worker will consult with the treatment provider, develop an Attendance Improvement Plan, while working with the parent, guidance counselor and High School Administrator for Support Services to determine possible intervention and/or support services.
      e. Should the assessment process determine that there isn’t any complicating medical or mental health issues the social worker will conduct further assessment through parent contact and/or home visit.
      f. If the student is of compulsory school age the appropriate administrator will work in conjunction with the SRO and probation department to initiate a P.I.N.S. petition. Parents will be informed that they will no longer be able to excuse an “unexcused” absence; thus the student will be considered “truant” with or without the support of the parent.
      g. If the student is beyond compulsory school age the appropriate administrator will work with the guidance counselor and parent to determine the best form for intervention.

      Home Instruction

      Pupils may be considered for home instruction if a parent is anticipating that the child will be absent for consecutive days exceeding two (2) weeks due to illness or medical reasons. This instruction may begin as soon as a parent calls the Special Education office. The application must be submitted through the Special Education Office (Room 509A) with final approval made by the Office of Special Programs. For physical impairments necessitating home instruction, a doctor’s prescription explaining the impairment and duration of absence from school must accompany the application.

      Reviewed June 25, 2002
      Revised May 3, 2011

      5110 Elementary Attendance Areas

      Resident students shall be assigned to schools on the basis of their place of residence and school boundary lines as established by the Board of Education.
      School boundary lines regulating the assignment of students to schools shall be established and changed in the best interests of the total school district enrollment.
      In order to balance class size in each grade level across the district, the Superintendent shall designate “flexible attendance areas” that may be used when elementary class sizes are larger than desired. Flexible attendance areas are neighborhoods served by school buses for more than one elementary school. Families with elementary children who move into flexible attendance areas will be assigned by the Superintendent to the school with the smaller class sizes. Elementary age siblings will be assigned to the same school. Students in the general education program will remain in their assigned school unless their residence changes to a different elementary school attendance area.
      Students placed in self-contained special education classes provided by the district shall be enrolled in the school where such classes are located.
      No other students shall attend a school outside of his or her normal attendance area without written permission of the Superintendent of Schools. Factors considered for granting permission include the student’s reason for attendance; the welfare of students currently attending the requested school, space availability in the requested school and cost to the district.
      If a student’s family moves to another school attendance area within the district, the student may, upon the recommendation of the Building Principal and approval of the Superintendent of schools, complete the year in the present school.
      Parents who request and are granted permission to have children attend a district school outside of their assigned attendance area are responsible for transporting their children to and from school.

      Adopted March 5, 2013

      5110-E.1 Flexible Attendance Streets Exhibit

      Regency Park

      Bishops Gate
      Covent Garden Devonshire Drive Downing Square
      Essex Circle
      Kensington Court
      Knights Bridge
      Queens Road
      Yorkshire Drive

      Heritage Village

      Beverwyck Drive Bleeker Road
      Guilder Lane
      Heritage Road
      Patroon Drive
      Steuben Drive
      Ten Eyck Place
      Van Dyke Place

      Brandywine Apartments

      Brandywine Parkway

      Presidential Estates

      Executive Drive Grant Court
      Jackson Court
      Monroe Court Pennsylvania Avenue Tyler Court
      Wilson Court

      Fairwood Apartments

      Brookedge Court
      Meadowbrook Court
      Winding Brook Drive

      5140 Entrance Age

      Children who reach their fifth birthday on or before December 1st of the year of matriculation are entitled to attend school and may be admitted to kindergarten. Proof of age must be presented in the form of a birth certificate, baptismal certificate, or passport.
      The Superintendent or his/her designees are authorized to make exceptions to the entrance date, based on a comprehensive evaluation of the child’s readiness for kindergarten.
      In rare cases, a child who has not met the age-eligibility to enroll in kindergarten may be granted early entrance. Early entrance is determined only after a thorough review of documentation which supports the child’s exceptionality and advanced levels of readiness for schooling.
      Only children who will reach the age of five (5) by January 31st of the year for which parents are requesting early entrance will be considered.
      All inquiries for consideration for early entrance must be received by the Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum and Instruction no later than April 1st annually for consideration for the upcoming school year. By May 1st, parents/guardians must supply the following supporting documents:

      1. Results of individual tests of cognitive ability and achievement that were administered by an independent psychologist. The student must obtain scores in the very superior range (a standard score of 130 or greater) on measures of both cognitive ability and achievement. It is recommended that for tests of cognitive ability the most current edition of Wechsler Preschool and Primary Scale of Intelligence, the Stanford-Binet Intelligence Scale, or the Differential Ability Scales (DAS) be administered. The most current Test of Early Reading Ability and Test of Early Math Ability are recommended as tests of achievement.
      2. Reports from the child’s preschool experience. Reports should include a description of the student’s social-emotional functioning and classroom behavior detailed by the preschool teacher, and/or a social-emotional evaluation from an independent evaluator. The description or evaluation must detail the student’s social problem solving skills
      (competence in social decision making and problem solving) including self-control skills, social awareness and group participation skills, and social decision making skills.

      Once the request and supporting documentation has been received by the Assistant Superintendent, the Assistant Superintendent will:

      1. Notify the principal of the potential school of record of the request.

      2 Convene a committee, facilitated by the Assistant Superintendent, to review the student’s evaluation and reports to determine if early entrance to kindergarten is appropriate. If submitted materials preliminarily support the readiness of the student to enter Kindergarten, the Assistant Superintendent will proceed to steps three and four.

      3. Make arrangements for the student to be screened by school personnel using additional criteria for readiness (engagement, ability to follow directions, use of age appropriate materials, separation from parents, etc.)
      4. Make arrangements for a Guilderland School Psychologist and/or other school personnel to observe the child in a natural setting with his or her peers.

      The Assistant Superintendent will notify the school principal and parent no later than June 15th of the decision regarding early entrance to kindergarten.
      A child who has regularly attended and satisfactorily completed a year’s work in a kindergarten which is duly registered with the State Education Department will be enrolled in the first grade.
      The Board of Education authorizes the Superintendent of Schools to establish any and all rules, regulations, and procedures necessary to implement and maintain this policy.
      A student who has not attended kindergarten and who will be six years of age on or before December 1st of the year of entrance may be admitted to grade one in September of the entrance year upon the recommendation of a local screening team composed of the school psychologist, the Building Principal, and other appropriate personnel. However, the district may request that such student enter at the kindergarten level.

      Adopted November 28, 2006
      Adopted March 6, 2012
      Adopted April 12, 2016
      Revised, Adopted March 6, 2018

      5150 School Admissions

      The district shall provide a public education to all persons residing in the district between the ages of five and twenty-one who have not received a high school diploma. Residence is defined as both physical presence and intent to remain in the district. Eligibility of homeless children to attend district schools shall be determined in accordance with federal and state law and regulation; see policy 5151 for guidance.
      A veteran of any age who has not yet received his/her high school diploma and who has been discharged under conditions other than dishonorable is eligible to attend school. A non-veteran under twenty-one years of age who has received a high school diploma shall be permitted to attend school or BOCES upon payment of tuition.
      Upon registration, all new students shall be enrolled and begin attendance the next school day or as soon as practicable. Students or their parents/guardians/persons in parental relation are required to present within three business days:

      1. Documentation of age: a birth certificate (original or certified transcript, including a foreign birth certificate) or baptismal record is sufficient, if provided no other form of evidence may be requested. If neither of these is available, a passport (including a foreign passport) may be used. If a passport is not available, the district may consider other evidence, which has been in existence for at least two years, such as: an official driver’s license, government-issued identification, school photo I.D. with date of birth, consulate identification card, hospital or health records, military dependent I.D. card, documents issued by government agencies, court-issued documents, Native American tribal documents, or records from non-profit international aid agencies or voluntary agencies; or other documents such as an entry in a family bible, an adoption record, or previously verified school records;
      2. Record of immunizations (see 5420-R for more on immunizations) and a health certificate from a licensed physician, physician assistant, or nurse practitioner; and
      3. Documentation of district residency: examples of acceptable forms of documentation include, but are not limited to, mortgage/deed or lease documents to a house/condominium/apartment, a statement by the parent/guardian’s landlord, property owner or co-tenant, or a statement by a third party relating to physical presence in the district, a pay stub, income tax form, telephone or utility bills or other bills, membership documents based upon residency, official driver’s license, learner’s permit, or non-driver identification, rent payment receipts, a copy of a money order for payment of rent, a letter from a parent’s employer that is written on company letterhead, voter registration document, or a state- or other government-issued ID, documents issued by federal, state, or local agencies, or judicial custody orders or guardianship papers showing residency.

      The district may require multiple forms of residency documentation sufficient to establish both physical presence in the district and intent to remain.

      The district shall not request or require a Social Security card or number, or any information which would tend to reveal the immigration status of the child, the parent, or the person in parental relation, in any forms, meetings or other communication, at the time of and/or as a condition of enrollment.
      The district shall review all submitted documentation, and make a determination of a student’s eligibility to attend district schools as soon as possible, but within three business days of initial enrollment, or four days if the documentation is presented on the third day. The district may verify documentation of age from a foreign country, but will not delay enrollment during verification. At any time during the school year, notwithstanding any prior determination to the contrary, the district may make a determination that a student is not eligible to attend the district’s schools, subject to the procedures outlined in the regulations of the Commissioner of Education.
      The district shall post its student enrollment/registration forms, procedures instructions and requirements, including the examples of acceptable documentation, on the district website, and shall provide such materials to all parents/guardians/children who request enrollment in the district.
      If the parent/guardian of a student seeking to enroll is limited English proficient, the district will meaningfully communicate material information about enrollment as required by federal law. The district will also provide parents/guardians of all newly enrolled students with appropriate information, including student handbooks, and information about access to special education services.

      Adopted January 19, 2016

      5151 Homeless Children

      The Board of Education recognizes its responsibility to identify homeless children within the district, encourage their enrollment and eliminate existing barriers to their education which may exist in district practices. The Board will provide homeless children attending the district’s schools with access to the same free and appropriate public education and other school programs and activities, including preschool education, as other children.
      A homeless child is a child who lacks a fixed, regular, and adequate nighttime residence or who has a primary nighttime location in a public or private shelter designed to provide temporary living accommodations, or a place not designed for, or ordinarily used as, a regular sleeping accommodation for human beings. This definition also includes a child who shares the housing of others due to loss of housing, economic hardship, or similar reason; lives in motels, hotels, trailer parks, or camping grounds due to the lack of alternative adequate accommodations; lives in a car, park, public space or abandoned building, substandard housing, bus or train station or similar setting; has been abandoned in a hospital or is awaiting foster care placement; or is a migratory child who qualifies as homeless. An unaccompanied youth is a homeless child for whom no parent or person in parental relation is available.
      A homeless child has the right to attend school in either the school of origin (i.e., where he/she resided before becoming homeless, or the school he/she was last enrolled), the school in the district of current location (i.e., where he/she currently resides as a result of his/her homelessness) that he/she is entitled to attend based on attendance zone or general eligibility, or a school in a district participating in a regional placement plan. Such schools include preschools. The homeless child is entitled to attend the designated school on a tuition-free basis for the duration of his or her homelessness. If the child becomes permanently housed, the child is entitled to continue to attendance in the same school building until the end of the school year and for one additional year if that year constitutes the child’s terminal year in such building. If a homeless child completes the final grade level in his/her school of origin, the child may also attend the designated receiving school at the next grade level.
      The Superintendent of Schools shall develop procedures necessary to expedite the homeless child’s access to the designated school. Such procedures shall include:

      1. Admission: Upon designation, the district shall immediately admit the homeless child to school, even if the child is unable to produce records normally required for enrollment, such as previous academic records, medical or immunization records, proof of age or residency or other documentation and even if there is a dispute with the child’s parents regarding school selection or enrollment. During a dispute, the student may continue attending the school until final resolution of the dispute, including all available appeals. Homeless children will have the same opportunity as other children to enroll in and succeed in the district’s schools. They will not be placed in separate schools or programs based on their status as homeless. The district shall eliminate barriers to identification, enrollment and retention of homeless children, including barriers to enrollment and retention due to outstanding fees, fines or absences.

      2. Transportation: The district shall provide transportation for homeless students currently residing within the district as required by applicable law, as described in the accompanying regulation.
      3. School Records: For homeless students attending school out of the district, the district shall, within five days of receipt of a request for records, forward a complete copy of the homeless child’s records including proof of age, academic records, evaluation, immunization records and guardianship paper, if applicable. For homeless students attending school in the district, the district shall request the student’s records (academic, medical, etc.) from the school the student last attended.
      4. Coordination: The district shall coordinate with local social services agencies and other entities providing services to homeless children and their families for the provision of services to homeless children, and shall coordinate with other school districts on issues of prompt identification, transportation, transfer of records, and other inter-district activities. This shall include ensuring the provision of appropriate services to homeless students with disabilities who are eligible for services under either Section 504 or IDEA.

      Information about a homeless child’s living situation shall be treated as a student education record, and shall not be deemed to be directory information under FERPA (see policy 5500).

      The Superintendent shall also designate a liaison for homeless children and ensure that this person is aware of his or her responsibilities under the law. The Superintendent shall ensure that the liaison receives appropriate professional development on identifying and meeting the needs of homeless students, including the definitions of terms related to homelessness. The liaison’s responsibilities shall include, but not be limited to, ensuring that:

      1. parents or guardians of homeless children are informed of the educational and related opportunities available to their children, and are provided with meaningful opportunities to participate in the education of their children;
      2. parents and guardians and unaccompanied youth are fully informed of all transportation services available to them, and are assisted in accessing them;
      3. enrollment disputes involving homeless children are promptly mediated and resolved;
      4. school personnel, through outreach and in coordination with shelters and social service agencies and other appropriate entities, identify homeless children, including homeless preschoolers;
      5. homeless children receive educational services, including Head Start and preschool services to which they are eligible, as well as referrals to health care and other appropriate services for homeless children and their families;
      6. public notice of the educational rights of homeless children is disseminated in locations frequented by homeless unaccompanied youth and parents/guardians of homeless children, in a manner and form understandable to them;
      7. staff who provide services to homeless students receive required professional development and support on identifying and meeting the needs of homeless students;
      8. homeless unaccompanied youth are informed of their rights, are enrolled in school, and have opportunities to meet the same state standards set for all students, including receiving credit for full or partial coursework earned in a prior school pursuant to Commissioner’s regulations.

      In accordance with law and regulation, the district will offer a prompt dispute resolution process (described in more detail in the accompanying administrative regulation).

      In accordance with Commissioner’s regulations, the district shall collect and transmit to the Commissioner information necessary to assess the educational needs of homeless children within the State.

      Replaced, Adopted January 31, 2017

      5151-R Homeless Children Regulation

      Each school in the district shall maintain forms provided by the Commissioner of Education for designating a homeless child’s district of attendance. These forms must be provided to any homeless child or parent or guardian who seeks to enroll a child in school. The district’s liaison for homeless students shall assist the homeless child and/or parent or guardian in understanding their rights under the law and provide them with information regarding the educational and related opportunities available to them.
      School placement decisions for homeless children will be based on the “best interest of the child” and shall consider student-centered factors such as the effect of mobility on student achievement, education, health and safety. Unless doing so is contrary to the wishes of the child’s parent or guardian, to the extent possible, a homeless child will continue to attend the school of origin (the school the child attended when he or she became homeless).
      If the district wishes to send a homeless child to a school other than the school of origin or a school requested by the parent or guardian, the Superintendent or designee shall provide the parent or guardian (or child, if an unaccompanied youth) with a written explanation of its decision, together with a statement regarding the right to appeal the placement, which shall be in a manner and form understandable to them. The Superintendent or designee shall refer any such dispute to the district’s liaison for the homeless for resolution. The homeless child must be enrolled in the school sought by the parent or guardian pending final resolution of the dispute, including all available appeals.

      Admission Procedures

      Upon designation, the Superintendent of Schools or designee shall immediately:

      1. review the designation form to ensure that it is complete;
      2. admit the homeless child even if the child or his/her parent or guardian is unable to produce records normally required for enrollment, or the student has missed application or enrollment deadlines, or there is an unresolved dispute regarding school selection or enrollment;
      3. where applicable, make a written request to the school district where a copy of the child’s records are located for a copy of the homeless child’s school records;
      4. notify the liaison for homeless children of the child’s admission. The liaison shall:

      a. notify the child and/or the parent or guardian of the educational and related opportunities available to homeless children including transportation;
      b. ensure that the child receives the educational services for which they are eligible, including Head Start and Early Head Start and preschool programs administered by the district;
      c. make necessary referrals for the homeless children or their families to health care services, dental services, mental health services, substance abuse services, housing services, and other appropriate services;
      d. ensure that any enrollment disputes are mediated promptly and in accordance with law;
      e. when assisting unaccompanied youth in placement or enrollment decisions, give priority to the views of such youth, and inform them of their status as “independent students” for purposes of applying for federal financial aid for college and assist with that process; and
      f. assist in obtaining required immunizations, health screenings, immunization records or health records.

      The Superintendent or designee shall forward a copy of the designation form to the Commissioner of Education and the school district of origin where applicable.

      Transportation

      Unless the homeless child is entitled to transportation provided by the Department of Social Services or Office of Children and Family Services, the district shall provide transportation services to the child in accordance with applicable law. A designated school district that must provide transportation to a homeless child is not required to provide transportation in excess of 50 miles one way, unless the Commissioner of Education determines that it is in the best interest of the child.
      Transportation must be provided when the district receives notice of a child’s homeless status, as well as during the pendency of disputes. If a child is receiving transportation to his/her school of origin and obtains permanent housing during the school year, the student has the right to continued transportation services to the school of origin until the end of the academic year, as well as if the student completes the final grade level in a building, or attends the designated receiving school at the next level.

      Dispute Resolution Process

      If, after the Superintendent reviews the designation form (STAC-202), he/she finds that the student is either not homeless, not entitled to attend the district’s school, or not entitled to transportation (if requested) the Superintendent or designee will do the following:

      1. Contact the district’s homeless liaison to assist in dispute resolution process.
      2. Contact the student and parent (if available) and inform them of their opportunity to provide more information prior to the district making a final determination.

      If, after consideration of any additional information and input from the homeless liaison, the Superintendent makes a final determination that a student is not homeless, or not entitled to enrollment or transportation, he/she must provide the student’s parent or guardian, or the student, if the student is an unaccompanied youth, with written notice that the student is not entitled to their request. This written notice must also:

      1. state the rationale/basis for the district’s determination;
      2. state the date as of which the student will be excluded from the district’s schools (or transportation);
      3. advise that the district’s final determination may be appealed to the Commissioner of Education (Commissioner);
      4. provide the name and contact information for the district’s homeless liaison;
      5. inform the student’s parent or guardian or the student, if the student is an unaccompanied youth, that the district’s homeless liaison is required to assist him/her in filing such an appeal; and
      6. include, as an attachment, the form needed to file an appeal to the Commissioner.

      The Superintendent must ensure that the district’s final decision is delivered to the parent, guardian, or unaccompanied youth in a timely manner. The student must remain enrolled and provided with transportation (if requested) until the district makes a final determination and for a minimum of 30 days after the determination to give the student’s parent or guardian or unaccompanied youth the opportunity to appeal to the Commissioner.

      If the parent/guardian or student commences an appeal to the Commissioner within 30 days of the final determination, the homeless child or youth will be permitted to continue to attend the school s/he is enrolled in at the time of the appeal and/or receive transportation to that school until the Commissioner renders a decision.

      Reviewed January 31, 2017

      5152 Admission of Non-Resident Students

      The Board of Education affirms that its primary responsibility is to provide the best possible educational opportunities for the children who are legal district residents and who are of legal age to attend school.

      However, a non-resident student may be admitted to district schools upon payment of the Board-adopted tuition charge, if and only if, in the judgment of the Superintendent of Schools, the following conditions are met 

      1. The faculty and space are sufficient to accommodate the non-resident student;
      2. The non-resident student meets the district’s criteria for admission; and
      3. The admission of such non-resident student during the enrollment period is in the best interests of the district.

      Building Principals will recommend non-resident student for approval or denial of admission, in accordance with district guidelines and state law and regulations. Any questions shall be referred to the superintendent for further review. The eligibility for enrollment of each non-resident student will be subject to annual review and reaffirmation. Final approval and placement shall be at the discretion of the Superintendent.

      As with resident students, non-resident students will be expected to maintain a level of effort and achievement in accordance with their ability and to abide by district- and buildinglevel standards of conduct.

      Tuition

      The Board will establish tuition charges for non-resident students annually. Tuition rates shall be determined in accordance with the formula established by the New York State

      Commissioner of Education. Non-resident students must satisfy the district’s tuition payment requirements in order to maintain their registration and attendance in the school district.

      Future Residents

      The children of families who have signed a contract to buy or build a residence in the school district may be enrolled during the semester in which they expect to become residents without payment of tuition. In the event a student has begun a semester, and for whatever reason, the contract is not fulfilled, the student may finish the semester without payment of tuition. In all such future resident cases, the parents must assume full responsibility for the transportation of the student.

      Former Residents

      When the family of a resident student moves outside the school district, the then non-resident student may continue without payment of tuition for the balance of the school year if the parents assume full responsibility for transportation and in the judgment of the Superintendent of Schools, the individual remains a student in good standing for the duration of the school year and if:

      1. The student is a senior as determined by the number of course credits earned; or
      2. The move occurs after April 1st of the school year (applies K- 11).

      Emancipated Minors

      A student who is an “emancipated minor” residing in the district may attend school in the district upon satisfactory proof that he or she is emancipated, i.e., living separate and apart from his or her parent(s) and not financially dependent upon them or in need or receipt of foster care. The district may not require an affidavit from the parent(s) of the student where such would constitute a hardship due to the unwillingness or inability of such parent(s) to provide same.

      Non-residents Owning Real Property in the District

      Non-residents who own real property in the district whose children have been accepted as students in the district schools will have deducted from the tuition amount a sum equal to school taxes paid in accordance with section 3202 of the Education Law.

      Children of Non-resident District Employees

      Tuition charges for children of non-resident district employees will be waived if the staff member is at least a four hour per day employee or a .5 full time equivalent (FTE).

      Enrollment requests must be submitted to the superintendent, in writing, by February 1st for a September admission. Late requests shall be accepted for final approval and placement at the discretion of the Superintendent.

      Review of Residency Decisions

      The Board of Education names the Superintendent of Schools as its designee to determine whether a child is a resident of the district for purposes of attending school in the district. Prior to any residency decision by the Superintendent, the child’s parents or person in parental relation, as applicable, will be given the opportunity to submit information concerning the child’s right to attend school in the district. Where the Superintendent determines that the child is neither a resident nor entitled to attend school in the district, written notice of the determination will be provided including the procedures for the parents to follow in order to appeal the decision to the Board of Education. Prior to the Board’s review of the residencydetermination, the student’s parents may submit additional information concerning the student’s right to attend school in the district.

      If the Board determines that the student is not entitled to attend school in the district, within two (2) business days of rendering such decision, written notice must be provided to the parents and include the basis for the determination, the date of exclusion from the district, and a statement regarding the right to appeal an adverse decision to the Commissioner within thirty (30) days.

      The notice will also indicate that information concerning the appeal may be obtained from the New York State Education Department, Office of Counsel.

      Transportation

      Transportation will be provided for non-resident students if and only if existing bus routing is used, and there is sufficient room on the bus. Such requests for transportation must be made annually by April 1.

      NOTE: This policy is not applicable to homeless students entitled to attend district schools under federal and state law and regulations, who may not be currently residing in the district (see policy 5151, Homeless Children). Homeless students who are not entitled to attend district schools under federal and state laws may be considered for non-resident enrollment under this policy.

      This policy is also not intended to cover students who are placed in district programs by another school district.

      Ref: Education Law §3202
      8 NYCRR, Section 100.2(x)

      Note: Prior policy, Policy Manual, 403, revised
      Homeless Children- see policy #5151 Homeless Children & regulation

      Adopted February 10, 2004
      Adopted December 7, 2010
      Revised, Adopted June 17, 2014
      Revised, Adopted November 4, 2015
      Revised, Adopted November 1, 2016
      Revised, Adopted July 2, 2019

      5152-R Admission of Non-Resident Students Regulation

      Pupil Addresses: Verification and Investigation

      1. The address of the parents must be the address of residence for each student. If a student claims residence with a person other than his/her parent(s), evidence of legal guardianship in the form of a verifiable document acceptable to the Superintendent must be presented. Special circumstances may be appealed directly to the Superintendent of Schools.
      2. Should a student’s address change at any time during his/her enrollment, residency must be confirmed by acceptable documents, i.e., lease agreement, utility bill, voter registration card.
      3. If a student’s address is not the address of his/her parent(s) or legal guardian(s), the Building Principal shall consult with the Superintendent of Schools to confirm the procedures used in determining the student’s current address. The matter shall then be investigated for the purpose of providing evidence of the child’s false claim to residency.
      4. A student shall be immediately transferred to the appropriate school district, if the evidence indicates that a student’s address has been purposefully changed in order to attend a school in the Guilderland Central School District.
      5. In general, student admission should not be delayed pending verification of the address. A verification and/or investigation can take place after student admission has been effected.

      Reviewed January 20, 2004
      Reviewed November 16, 2010
      Reviewed June 17, 2014

      5152.1 Admission of Foreign Students

      The Board of Education recognizes the cultural enrichment derived from welcoming non-immigrant foreign students into the educational program. Thus, the Board encourages the attendance of non-immigrant foreign students in the district’s high school who are part of recognized exchange programs.
      Only non-immigrant foreign students who possess a valid J-1 (Exchange Program Visitors) or F-1 (Academic Student) visa to study in the United States will be admitted to the district’s high school. The Board retains the sole discretion to deny admission to any student not meeting all the requirements set forth in this policy and regulation only.

      Foreign Exchange Students (J-1 Visa)

      The Board encourages district participation in a foreign exchange student program. Foreign exchange students will be admitted to the district high school for a one-year academic program.

      1. The district recognizes only those organizations designated as “Exchange Visitor Programs” by the U.S. Department of State, pursuant to federal regulations, as sponsoring organizations for the exchange of students. Any such organization must supply proof of designation prior to recognition.
      2. No foreign exchange students subject to this policy and regulation shall be brought into the district by a foreign exchange student program unless he or she has been accepted in writing as a student by the high school Principal or a designee.
      3. Foreign exchange students will be allowed to attend school and will be provided bus transportation to and from school without charge. When a foreign exchange student is accepted for admission pursuant to this policy and regulation, the letter of acceptance shall include a statement that tuition shall be waived for the student.
      4. The district will accept no more than five foreign exchange students per school from any single foreign exchange program. In addition, the financial impact resulting from accepting foreign students will largely determine the number of students in any building;
      but in no case will the number exceed 1% of the total number of students in the building.

      In all cases described above and any unusual circumstances not covered above, a written request must be submitted to the Superintendent. The Board may terminate the approval of a foreign student program when it would be in the best interests of the district to do so.

      No F-1 students will be admitted into grades K-8. F-1 students may be admitted to the high school for one academic year upon the payment of tuition. A request in writing must first be submitted to the superintendent who shall determine whether or not the student(s) will be admitted. The amount of tuition charged shall reflect the full, unsubsidized per capita cost of providing educational services to the student.

      Immigrant Students

      All school-aged immigrant children who have abandoned their residence in a foreign country and established residence in the district will be admitted to the district’s schools without payment of tuition. Proof of residency must first be submitted to the superintendent for review.

      F-1 Visa: The “F” visa is for academic studies.

      Changes in U.S. immigration law, effective November 30, 1996, require that no alien may be issued an F-1 visa to attend a U.S. public elementary or middle school (K-8). Any alien who wishes to attend public high school (grades 9-12) in the United States in student visa (F-1) status must submit evidence that the local school district has been reimbursed in advance for the unsubsidized per capita cost of the education. Also, attendance at U.S. public high schools cannot exceed a total of 12 months. Please note that these changes do not affect other visa categories such as the J-1 exchange visitor program or the qualified school-age child of an alien who holds another type of nonimmigrant visa (i.e., A, E, H, I, L, etc.). No alien may be issued an F-1 visa in order to attend a publicly-funded adult education program.
      J-1 Visa: The “J” visa is for educational and cultural exchange programs designated by the U.S. Department of State, Exchange Visitor Program and Designation Staff.
      Scholastic Preparation: “J” exchange visitors must have sufficient scholastic preparation to participate in the designated program, including knowledge of the English language, or the exchange program must be designed to accommodate non-English speaking participants.

      Adopted October 10, 2006
      Adopted December 7, 2010
      Reviewed, Adopted June 17, 2014

      5152.1-R Admission of Foreign Students Regulations

      The High School Building Principal shall review applications for the admission of foreign students according to the guidelines established below.

      1. Students must be between the ages of 15 and 18 years and six months.
      2. The student must have demonstrated in his/her home school a level of scholastic achievement to indicate the possibility of success in the high school.
      3. The student must be proficient in the English language.
      4. The student’s records and credentials, including English translation, indicating all academic institutions attended, courses studied, and grades received in secondary school must be available to school officials no less than three weeks prior to the departure from the student’s home or by June 15 for admission the following September.
      5. The student must be in good health and an immunization record must be provided.
      6. The student or the sponsoring organization must provide verification of health and accident insurance with a minimum limit of $50,000.
      7. The student must enroll for a full course of study on a full-time basis.
      8. The student must agree to conform to established standards of acceptable behavior and conform to the rules and regulations of the high school as defined in the Code of Conduct.

      All applications will be reviewed by the appropriate counselor and the high school principal. After the review, a recommendation for the approval or rejection of the application will be submitted to the Superintendent.

      The district reserves the right to deny admission to any student not meeting all the requirements set forth in this policy and regulation.

      Payment of Tuition

      Any letter of acceptance furnished to a foreign exchange program on behalf of a foreign student with a J-1 visa will state that tuition will be waived, unless the Board determines otherwise. If the Board opts to charge tuition, the letter of acceptance will state the cost of tuition and the terms of payment.
      Upon approval of the superintendent, F-1 students will pay tuition for the amount of the full, unsubsidized per capita cost to the district of providing education services to the student. Any letter of acceptance furnished to a foreign student with an F-1 visa must state the cost of tuition and the terms of payment.

      Extracurricular Activities

      The Board permits foreign students to participate in all district extracurricular activities, provided they meet the district’s eligibility requirements and follow the district’s behavioral and academic rules. Foreign students wishing to participate in interscholastic athletics must also comply with all State Education Department and New York State Public High School Athletic Association (NYSPHSAA) rules and standards.

      Registration; Graduation

      1. The non-immigrant student must present himself/herself for registration prior to the first day of classes for the current semester.
      2. At the time of registration the non-immigrant student will be provided a form, to be signed by him/her, the host family, and, in the case of a foreign exchange student, a representative of the sponsoring organization, indicating compliance with the conditions as stated in this policy.
      3. The non-immigrant student will be granted a certificate upon completion of an approved course of study and will be allowed to participate in commencement exercises, as appropriate.

      Termination of Progress

      A student’s participation may be terminated at any time by school officials for failure to abide by established guidelines, including:

      1. failure of two or more courses of study without sufficient effort;
      2. failure to conform to established rules and regulations;
      3. failure to conform to the regulations established by the sponsoring organization; and/or
      4. excessive absences.

      Note: Regulation added
      Reviewed September 19, 2006
      Reviewed November 16, 2010
      Revised, Reviewed December 11, 2012
      Reviewed June 17, 2014

      5210 Student Organizations

      The Board of Education recognizes the educational values inherent in student participation in the extracurricular life of the school both in curriculum and noncurriculum-related activities, and supports the concept of the formation of student groups for such purposes as building sound social relationships, developing interests in an academic area, and gaining an understanding of the elements and responsibilities of good citizenship.
      The Board encourages secondary level students to pursue clubs and interests which may not be related directly to any of the curriculum programs offered in the district. In pursuit of such a goal and in compliance with the federal Equal Access Act, the Board maintains a limited open forum* by which secondary students may meet for voluntary student-initiated activities unrelated directly to the curriculum, regardless of the religious, political, philosophical or other content of the speech of such activities.
      In an effort to provide a fair opportunity to students who desire to conduct a noncurriculum-related meeting, the Board shall ensure that:

      • The meeting is voluntary and student-initiated
      • There is no sponsorship/endorsement, including no promotion or direction in a meeting by the school, Board, or its agents or employees. Assignment of a school employee to a meeting for supervisory purposes is not sponsorship;
      • Employees or agents of the district and/or Board are present primarily for supervisory purposes and in neither situation will an advisor promote a message which is contrary to the District’s Priorities, or Board of Education policy;
      • The meeting does not materially and substantially interfere with the orderly conduct of educational activities within the school; and
      • Non-school persons may not direct, conduct, control or regularly attend activities of the student group.

      *Under the Equal Access Act, 20 U.S.C. Section 4071, limited open forum is defined whenever a secondary school grants an offering to or an opportunity for one or more noncurriculum-related student groups to meet on school premises during non-instructional time.

      The Superintendent of Schools is charged with developing procedures for registering and regulating student groups or clubs. Such procedures shall ensure that the district will register any group organized for a purpose not prohibited by Board policy or by law. Groups with an off-campus organization should submit a copy of that organization=s constitution or by-laws.
      The district reserves its right to invite those student groups whose messages are consistent with the District Priorities, and Board of Education policies as determined by the building administration to assist in the dissemination of information. Examples may include having students aid the district in dispensing anti-drug or anti-drinking messages as well as anti-discrimination and bullying prevention themes.
      All student groups must abide by administrative regulations established pursuant to this policy. Failure to do so can result in the revocation of privileges to operate.

      Adopted: September 14, 2004
      Revised and Adopted April 8, 2014

      5210-R Student Organizations-Regulations

      The following regulations govern the registration and management of student groups at the secondary level. Additional procedures and advisory materials for co-curricular clubs to operate by are found in the co-curricular advisory materials manual adopted by the Guilderland Central School District in March of 2011.
      The district will register and officially recognize any group organized for a purpose not prohibited by Board of Education policy or by law, if such group complies with all provisions of this regulation. Any group that has been found to violate this policy and regulation may be subjected to losing its rights to meet on school premises as otherwise guaranteed under the Equal Access Act.

      I. Initial Classification

      The Building Principal shall determine whether a given group is curriculum-related or not. In order to qualify as “curriculum-related,” the relationship between the student group and the curriculum must meet one of the following criteria:
      A. The subject matter of the group must directly and consistently relate to a specific course or subject, including a balanced representation where applicable.
      B. Participation in the group is a course requirement; or
      C. Academic credit is earned for participation in the group.

      Any student group that does not meet at least one of the above criteria shall be classified as “noncurriculum-related.”

      II. Curriculum-related Student Groups

      Because curriculum-related student groups have a direct relationship to the school program, such groups are subject to greater control by the district and may receive financial support from the district.

      Role of Faculty Advisors. For curriculum-related groups, faculty advisors will have the authority to provide in-depth guidance and teaching to students, and shall act on behalf of the district to ensure that the group’s activities are aligned with the district’s objectives. All such faculty advisors must teach a subject in the district whose content is directly related to the group’s activities, or have sufficient experience or expertise related to that subject, as determined by the administration.

      III. Noncurriculum-related Student Groups

      A noncurriculum-related student group has a purpose and concerns a subject matter not directly related to the body of courses offered by the school. Pursuant to the federal Equal Access Act, all meetings and activities of noncurriculum-related student groups must be initiated, directed and controlled by students of the district and not by other individuals, including school personnel, parents, and all other non-school persons
      (persons with no official affiliation or relationship to the school).

      Non-school persons may not regularly attend meetings or activities of noncurriculum-related student groups. Notification of the attendance of a non-school person at a meeting must be submitted to the advisor and Principal in writing, usually no less than seven school days prior to the meeting. The district reserves the right to deny access to non-school persons when such attendance is determined to be materially and substantially disruptive to the educational process or intrude on the rights of others.

      No district funding shall be supplied to noncurricular student groups other than the incidental costs of providing a meeting place and adult supervision.

      Faculty Advisors. For noncurriculum-related student groups, the faculty advisor shall act as a monitor for the students, and may provide assistance in facilitating logistics when requested. However, the students must retain control of such meetings and activities. Faculty advisors for noncurriculum related groups may not assume leadership, direction or control of student groups, and may not speak on behalf of student groups. At times, it is permissible and in fact, helpful for a faculty advisor to facilitate group discussion or share expertise without violating the guidelines in this section. In such instances, the objective is for the students to ultimately be self-governing and to serve as their own facilitators.

      Unless specifically stated otherwise, sections IV through XIII below apply to all student groups.

      IV. Student Group Registration

      Students wishing to form a group must register with the Building Principal on forms provided for this purpose. At that time and each year thereafter, student groups will be required to:
      A. Submit a list of its members and officers by the end of the first marking period;
      B. Submit a copy of its proposed constitution and/or bylaws; and
      C. Submit a copy of the constitution and bylaws of any off-campus organization with which it may be affiliated

      V. Parental Notification

      A list of current student organizations will be included in the GHS Student Handbook along with directions for parents to address any concerns which they may have regarding their child’s participation in a student organization. If parents notify the principal that they do not want their child to be a part of one or more student organizations, school officials will honor such requests. However, parents will not be required to give their consent for their child to participate in a specific student organization.

      VI. District Authority

      The Superintendent of Schools, the Building Principal and/or designee has full authority to prohibit otherwise unlawful meetings; maintain discipline and order on school premises; prevent the material and substantial interference with the orderly conduct of the educational activities; and/or protect the well-being of students and other members of the school community.

      VII. Scheduling Meetings

      Based upon availability and advance request, properly registered student groups may conduct meetings on school premises before and after school.

      Student groups may meet and schedule meeting based on the school day and school calendar with permission from the Building Principal or designee. Meeting dates and times must be presented by the end of the first marking period. Additional activities that require dates and times beyond the school day, or would use a space necessary during the school day require a building use form for prior approval.

      VIII. Presence of Faculty Advisors

      To ensure appropriate levels of safety, the district requires the presence of a faculty advisor for all meetings and activities of student groups, whether curriculum-related or not. No school employee shall be expected to attend or monitor a meeting if the content of the speech at the meeting is contrary to the employee’s beliefs.

      For responsibilities of faculty advisors, see the appropriate section under curriculum-related or noncurriculum-related student groups listed previously and in the Guilderland Central School District Co-Curricular Advisory Materials.

      IX. Meeting/Activity Announcements

      The Board allows all student groups, whether curriculum-related or not, to have their meetings and activities announced through district-owned media channels. The Board shall allow the use of media channels such as bulletin boards, morning announcements on the P.A. system, school television program, school calendar, school newspaper, and the use of school hallways for announcement posters, subject to the following requirements:

      A. Announcements for student group meetings and activities, whether curriculum-related or not, may only include the name of the group, the date, time, and place of the meeting or activity, and the general subject of the meeting or activity. Announcements shall not advocate a particular position or promote a specific viewpoint.

      B. All announcements must be submitted to the Principal or faculty member in charge of the media channel at least one (1) school day in advance of such meeting or activity. The Principal or his/her designee will ensure that all announcements adhere to these provisions, and shall decide how such announcements shall be displayed and/or conveyed.

      X. Distribution of Information

      In keeping with the Board’s policy on ensuring student free expression within the context of the Equal Access Act, student communication for noncurriculum-related student groups within meetings and activities will be undisturbed except when such meetings and activities are determined to be materially and substantially disruptive to the educational process or intrude on the rights of others. However, the district maintains its right to limit student groups’ access to school facilities and/or the student body when it comes to the distribution or broadcasting of student group viewpoints outside of their meeting room since the Equal Access Act itself provides no such rights.

      XI. Display Cases

      Display cases are maintained by the district for the dissemination of information consistent with the goals and objectives of the district. The district reserves its right to invite those student groups whose messages are consistent with District Priorities, Core Values and Board of Education policies to assist in the dissemination of the district’s messages, as determined by the building administration. Examples may include having students aid the district in dispensing anti-drug or anti-drinking messages as well as anti-discrimination and bullying prevention themes.

      XII. Dissemination of Regulation

      Copies of this regulation will be made available to students, parents, teachers and administrators during regular business hours at the Principal’s office. A summary of these regulations will be annually provided to parents and students in a manner consistent with district practices regarding the dissemination of other general information.
      Additionally, a copy of this regulation will be provided to the student members and faculty advisors of all student groups upon initial registration and annually thereafter. Each member of a student group will be asked to sign a statement indicating that he/she has read, understands, and agrees to abide by this regulation. Failure to abide by the administrative regulations can result in the revocation of privileges to operate.

      Reviewed September 14, 2004
      Revised and Reviewed April 8, 2014
      Revised, Reviewed June 16, 2015

      5225 Student Personal Expression

      The Board of Education recognizes the importance and value of student personal expression and recognizes that students do not shed their first amendment right of free expression at the schoolhouse gate. As in broader American society, the Board also understands that there is a balancing of an individual’s rights under the First Amendment with the rights of the community. Student personal expression in this context refers to student verbal and written communication using any medium (paper, e-mail; website postings, etc.) including, but not limited to, poetry, prose, art, video and music composition that is intended to be shared with the broader school community, or other actions taken to express viewpoints such as demonstrating or protesting.

      Although students retain their right to free expression in school, that right is not unfettered. School officials may regulate expression as to time, place and manner. Students’ expression which causes a substantial disruption or which materially interferes with school activities or rights of others, or might reasonably lead the school administration to forecast substantial disruption of or material interference with school activities, is not constitutionally protected speech.

      The Board of Education wishes to encourage student personal expression. To the extent possible, Administrators will recognize the existence of multiple points of view and differences of opinion on controversial issues.

      Distribution of Materials

      When students wish to personally express themselves in the broader school community by distributing materials, they must seek prior approval from the building principal or his/her designee. The building principal or his/her designee will render his/her decision within two school days of receiving the request. The building principal shall give due consideration to the protected right of freedom of expression, the maintenance of the normal operation of school and its activities, the protection of persons and property and the need to assist students in learning appropriate ways to exercise their rights. Unless such student expression takes place within the confines of a school-sponsored event/activity authorization will be granted if:

      • The material is distributed as directed by the Principal or designee in such a manner as to not materially or substantially interfere with the rights of others or substantially disrupt the normal operation of the school;
      • The material is not considered to be obscene, lewd, indecent, libelous, an invasion of the privacy of other individuals, or an expression that attacks a person’s character, family, or actual or perceived race, color, religion, religious practice, age, weight, sex, ethnic group, national origin, physical appearance, sexual orientation, gender (including gender identity or gender expression) or disabling condition.
      •  The material is free from advertisements or promotion of cigarettes, e-cigarettes, liquor, illegal or illicit drugs, or drug paraphernalia or other products or services harmful to minors and/or not permitted to minors by law, or advocating breaking laws and school policies and/or regulations.

      Procedural Due Process

      If a student(s) seeks to distribute material within school buildings or at school events, he/she must present such material for prior review by the Building Principal who must make a decision regarding distribution within two (2) school days of receipt of the request and the provide the reason for the denial in writing. The aggrieved student(s) may within two (2) school days, appeal in writing to the Superintendent of Schools. The Superintendent of Schools must issue a written decision within two (2) school days after receiving the appeal.

      Off-Campus Student Expression

      Generally, school administrative authority regarding student expression does not extend beyond school grounds or school-sponsored functions. However, with today’s technologies, the line between off and on campus expression can be blurred. Students are advised that if off campus personal expression substantially disrupts or materially interferes with school activities or might reasonably lead the school administration to forecast substantial disruption of or material interference with school activities or interrupts another individual’s access to school, such as when the speech is threatening in nature, they may be subject to discipline under the Code of Conduct.

      Student Demonstrations and Protests

      Students maintain their constitutional right while they are in school, or at school sponsored events, to peacefully assemble. However, the district may take reasonable actions to maintain a safe and functioning learning environment, to ensure that the school environment is not materially disrupted. Accordingly, school officials maintain the authority to limit student demonstrations which result in materially disrupting the operation of the schools’ educational process. In addition, the school may deem student absences from school or class to demonstrate or protest to be unexcused under the district’s Attendance policy (#5100), and those absences may result in consequences under that policy.

      The district may also plan and host its own events to address issues of student and school concern.

      Violation of Policy

      Students who violate this policy will be subject to the appropriate disciplinary action, which may include short or long-term suspension, in accordance with the Code of Conduct.

      Cross-ref: 0115, Harassment, Hazing and Bullying
      0110, Sexual Harassment
      4526, Computer Use in Instruction
      5100, Student Attendance
      5220, School-Sponsored Student Expression
      5300, Code of Conduct

      Ref: Morse v. Frederick, 551 U.S. 393 (2007)
      Bethel School District v. Fraser, 478 U.S. 675 (1986)
      Tinker v. Des Moines Independent Community School Dist., 393 U.S. 503, (1969) (limits on student free speech rights in school setting)
      Eisner v. Stamford Board of Educ., 314 F Supp 832, modf’d 440 F2nd 803 (1971)|
      New York State’s Dignity for All Students Act (The Dignity Act), Chapter 482 (2010),
      Chapter 102 (2012)

      Adopted: October 23, 2018

      5252 Student Activities Funds Management

      Extraclassroom activity funds are moneys raised other than by taxation or through charges of the Board.
      The Board of Education shall have the responsibility for the protection and supervision of the financial affairs of student clubs and extracurricular activities. The Board directs the Superintendent of Schools, the School Business Administrator, and Building Principals to take all such steps as may be required by applicable state law and regulations, as well as district policy and regulations, to account for and safeguard these funds, to assure that they will be used for student-determined purposes, and to allow students to have a major voice, as appropriate, in decisions regarding the expenditure of such funds.
      The Principal of each school concerned will appoint a competent or qualified faculty advisor for each club or organization. An audit of all accounts will be made annually by the school auditor.

      Adopted May 12, 1998
      Revised and Adopted September 10. 2013
      Adopted June 17, 2014

      5280 Interscholastic Athletics

      Interscholastic athletics for boys and girls is an integral and desirable part of the district’s secondary school educational program. Individual and team sports shall be based upon comprehensive physical education instruction and intramural activities, seeking broad participation from all eligible secondary students. Lifetime or carry-over sports are to be particularly encouraged and supported. Parity in the number and kind of sports activities for girls and boys is a clear objective of the district.

      Student eligibility for participation on interscholastic teams shall include:

      1. authorization by the school physician;
      2. written parent or guardian consent (the written consent will contain information for parents on mild traumatic brain injury (TBI) and will provide a link to the State Education Department’s web page on TBI); and
      3. endorsement by the Building Principal based on established rules and various league and State Education Department regulations.

      Although the district will take reasonable care to protect student athletes, students may still sustain injuries. In order to most effectively ensure student safety, open communication between students, parents and coaches about the child’s medical condition is critical. Coaches, and other appropriate staff, will receive guidance and training regarding recognition of injury and removal of the student athlete from play in the event of injury. Parents and/or students are expected to report injuries so that student health can be protected.
      In the case of a suspected or actual head injury, a student must be removed from play immediately. In order to resume participation following injury, including head injury, the student needs to receive medical clearance. The Superintendent, in consultation with appropriate district staff, including the school physician, will develop regulations and procedures to guide the process of return to play.
      In recognition of the importance of appropriately managing head injuries, the Board authorizes the creation of a Concussion Management Team (CMT). The CMT will be comprised of the athletic director, a school nurse, the school physician, a coach of an interscholastic team, an athletic trainer and other appropriate personnel designated by the Superintendent. The CMT is charged with overseeing compliance with state training requirements, developing guidelines for use by coaches and physical education teachers and developing information for distribution to parents and students.

      Adopted February 2, 2016

      5280.1 Interscholastic Athletics-Athletic Placement Process

      The Guilderland Central School District shall permit 7th and 8th grade students to compete under the Athletic Placement Process, as articulated by the State Education Department. These students are to be placed at levels of competition appropriate to their physiological maturity, physical fitness and skills in relationship to other students in accordance with the standards established by the Commissioner.

      Adopted December 16, 1997
      Reviewed and Adopted May 22, 2007
      Reviewed June 17, 2014
      Revised, Adopted December 8, 2015
      Revised, Adopted January 23, 2018

      5280.1-R Interscholastic Athletics-Athletic Placement Process Regulation

      The Guilderland Central School District does allow students, in some circumstances, to compete under the Athletic Placement Process. Physical education teachers, coaches, students, or parents/guardians may ask the Director of Health, Physical Education & Athletics to evaluate a student, using the APP. Students will not be processed through the evaluation procedures without a request from the Director of Health, Physical Education & Athletics and parent/guardian written permission. It is not the intent to evaluate all modified students, and evaluation should be considered only for those students with the appropriate physical and emotional readiness, and whose athletic abilities are outside of those of their age-related peers.
      Working in this capacity, the Director of Health, Physical Education & Athletics is required to implement the following procedural steps:
      Step 1 District Policy: Confirm that the school district has approved a resolution to allow students to participate in the APP (and/or revise the language in existing “Selection/ Classification” policies to include the new process). If no such resolution exists, proper steps should be taken to ensure that this first requirement is met.
      Step 2 Parent/Guardian Permission: All students who are to be evaluated must first obtain written parent/guardian permission before any evaluation may begin.
      Step 3 Administrative Approval: The athletic administrator should confirm that the student is suitable for consideration, which includes the likelihood that the student would play in at least 50% of the games. Additionally, because of the increased time demands of participation at the high school level, the student’s academic performance (as determined at the local level) should be at or above grade level. Furthermore, administration should assess the student’s emotional readiness to socialize with high school-aged students. If the student is not academically or socially ready, the student should not proceed through the APP.
      Step 4 Medical Clearance: (Must be completed BEFORE the physical fitness portion of the process) The district medical director will determine a student’s physical maturity level, and compare the physical size of the student in relation to that of the students against whom the student wishes to compete. If the student is determined to have attained the appropriate physical maturity level and comparable physical size for the desired sport and level the student may proceed with step 5. If the medical director determines that the student has not attained an appropriate physical maturity level for the desired sport and level, the process stops.
      Step 5 Sport Skill Evaluation: The sport coach will rely on past personal observations and may consider input from the student’s former coaches to complete the evaluation. If the coach is unfamiliar with the student, the sport coach may wish to observe the student in a physical education class.

      Step 6 Physical Fitness Testing: This must be done by a certified physical education teacher who is not a coach of the sport for which the student will be trying out. The President’s Physical Fitness Test has been selected as the test for this process, and the student must meet the 85th percentile level for their age in 4 out of 5 test components (see Appendix E, I, and J). For students trying out for swimming, see Appendix J for an alternate fitness test to the 1 mile walk/run- students trying out for swimming may choose to either do the 1 mile walk/ run or the 500 yard swim. (Exception to the physical fitness test requirement: Students who desire to try out for bowling or golf teams are not required to complete the physical fitness testing).
      Step 7 Qualification Determination: The results of the three evaluations will be sent to the Director of Health, Physical Education & Athletics. Only students who pass all parts of the APP are permitted to try out.
      Step 8 Try Outs: The student is allowed to try out for the sport and level requested or the student must return to the modified level of competition. For students trying out for bowling or golf, there is a separate set of instructions.
      Step 9 Records: The Director of Health, Physical Education & Athletics must maintain all records of students who have successfully completed the APP. Items to be kept in the student’s file are: Parent/Guardian Permission and Result letters; Maturity Evaluation and Medical Director Form; Physical Fitness results; Coach’s Sport Skill Evaluation.
      Step 10 Notifications: A Notification List of the scores of all athletes who have successfully completed the process and have been approved through the APP after the try-out period has been completed must be sent to:

      • The physical education director and/or athletic director of competitor schools
      • Athletic governing board or section office

      Exceptions

      If a student in grade 7 or 8 has reached the chronological age of 15 years old prior to July 1, he or she is eligible to participate on high school athletics without undergoing the APP; only medical approval by the district medical director is required, as these students are already at an advanced age and would otherwise lose eligibility due to aging out.

      Reviewed December 8, 2015
      Reviewed January 23, 2018

      5300.10 Code of Conduct – Definitions

      For purposes of this code, the following definitions apply.
      “Disruptive student” means an elementary or secondary student under the age of 21 who is substantially disruptive of the educational process or substantially interferes with the teacher’s authority over the classroom.
      “Gender” means actual or perceived sex and shall include a person’s gender identity or expression.
      “Gender expression” is the manner in which a person represents or expresses gender to others, often through behavior, clothing, hairstyle, activities, voice or mannerisms.
      “Gender identity” is one’s self-conception as being male or female, as distinguished from actual biological sex or sex assigned at birth.
      “Parent” means parent, guardian or person in parental relation to a student.
      “School property” means in or within any building, structure, athletic playing field, playground, parking lot or land contained within the real property boundary line of a public elementary or secondary school, or in or on a school bus, as defined in Vehicle and Traffic Law §142.
      “School function” means any school-sponsored extra-curricular event or activity.
      “Sexual orientation” means actual or perceived heterosexuality, homosexuality or bisexuality.
      “Violent student” means a student under the age of 21 who:

      1. Commits an act of violence upon a school employee, or attempts to do so.
      2. Commits, while on school property or at a school function, an act of violence upon another student or any other person lawfully on school property or at the school function, or attempts to do so.
      3. Possess, while on school property or at a school function, a weapon.
      4. Displays, while on school property or at a school function, what appears to be a weapon.
      5. Threatens, while on school property or at a school function, to use a weapon.
      6. Knowingly and intentionally damages or destroys the personal property of any school employee or any person lawfully on school property or at a school function.
      7. Knowingly and intentionally damages or destroys school district property.

      “Weapon” means a firearm as defined in 18 USC §921 for purposes of the Gun-Free Schools Act. It also means any other gun, BB gun, pistol, revolver, shotgun, rifle, machine gun, disguised gun, dagger, dirk, razor, stiletto, switchblade knife, gravity knife, brass knuckles, sling shot, metal knuckle knife, box cutters, cane sword, electronic dart gun, Kung Fu star, electronic
      stun gun, pepper spray or other noxious spray, explosive or incendiary bomb, or other device, instrument, material or substance that can cause physical injury or death when used to cause physical injury or death.
      Adopted: June 5, 2012

      5300.15 Code of Conduct – Student Rights and Responsibilities

      A. Student Rights

      The district is committed to safeguarding the rights given to all students under federal and state law and district policy. In addition, to promote a safe, healthy, orderly and civil supportive school environment, all district students have the right to:

      1. Take part in all district activities on an equal basis regardless of race, weight, color, creed, national origin, ethnic group, religion, religious practice, gender or sexual orientation or disability.
      2. Present their version of the relevant events to school personnel authorized to impose a disciplinary penalty in connection with the imposition of the penalty.
      3. Access school policies, regulations and rules and, when necessary, receive an explanation of those rules from school personnel.

      B. Student Responsibilities

      All district students have the responsibility to:
      1. Contribute to maintaining a safe, supportive and orderly school environment that is conducive to learning and to show respect to other persons and to property.
      2. Be familiar with and abide by all district policies, rules and regulations dealing with student conduct.
      3. Attend school every day unless they are legally excused and be in class, on time, and prepared to learn.
      4. Work to the best of their ability in all academic and extracurricular pursuits and strive toward their highest level of achievement possible.
      5. React to direction given by teachers, administrators and other school personnel in a respectful, positive manner.
      6. Work to develop strategies to resolve problems, conflicts and manage anger.
      7. Ask questions when they do not understand.
      8. Seek help in solving problems.
      9. Dress appropriately for school and school functions.
      10. Accept responsibility for their actions.
      11. Conduct themselves as representatives of the district when participating in or attending school-sponsored extracurricular events and to hold themselves to the highest standards of conduct, demeanor, and sportsmanship.

      Adopted: June 5, 2012

      5300.20 Code of Conduct – Essential Partners

      The Guilderland Central School District believes that appropriate student behavior is a result of cooperative efforts among students, parents, staff, administration and the Board of Education. The district therefore recognizes the following essential partners as being critical to the safety and success of students in our schools.

      A. Parents are expected to:
      1. Recognize that the education of their child(ren) is a joint responsibility of the parents and the school community and collaborate with the district to optimize their child’s educational opportunities.
      2. Send their children to school ready to participate and learn.
      3. Ensure their children attend school regularly and on time.
      4. Ensure authorized absences are excused.
      5. Insist their children be dressed and groomed in a manner consistent with the student dress code.
      6. Help their children understand that in a democratic society appropriate rules are required to maintain a safe, orderly environment.
      7. Know school rules and help their children understand them so that their children can help create a safe and supportive school environment.
      8. Convey to their children a supportive attitude toward education and the District.
      9. Build positive, constructive relationships with teachers, other parents and their children’s friends.
      10. Help their children deal effectively with peer pressure.
      11. Inform school officials of changes in the home situation that may affect student conduct or performance.
      12. Provide a place for study and ensure homework assignments are completed.
      B. Teachers are expected to:
      1. Maintain a climate of mutual respect and dignity for all students regardless of actual or perceived race, color, weight, national origin, ethnic group, religion, religious practice, disability, sexual orientation, gender (identity or expression), or sex, which will strengthen students’ self-concept and promote confidence to learn.
      2. Confront issues of discrimination and harassment or any situation that threatens the emotional or physical health or safety of any student, school employee or any person who is lawfully on school property or at a school function.
      3. Be sensitive to, and address as needed, personal biases that may prevent equal treatment of all students in the school or classroom setting.
      4. Report as soon as possible, incidents of harassment and discrimination that are witnessed or otherwise brought to a teacher’s attention.
      5. Be prepared to teach.
      6. Demonstrate interest in teaching and concern for student achievement and social-emotional growth and well being.
      7. Know school policies and rules, and enforce them in a fair and consistent manner.
      8. Communicate to students and parents:
      a. Course objectives and requirements
      b. Marking/grading procedures
      c. Assignment deadlines
      d. Expectations for students
      e. Classroom discipline plan and/or behavior expectations
      9. Communicate regularly with students, parents and other teachers concerning growth and achievement.
      10. Participate in school-wide efforts to provide adequate supervision in all school spaces in conformity with the Taylor Law.

      C. Coaches are expected to:
      1. Maintain a climate of mutual respect and dignity for all students regardless of actual or perceived race, color, weight, national origin, ethnic group, religion, religious practice, disability, sexual orientation, gender (identity or expression), or sex, which will strengthen students’ self-concept and promote confidence to learn.
      2. Confront issues of discrimination and harassment or any situation that threatens the emotional or physical health or safety of any student, school employee or any person who is lawfully on school property or at a school function.
      3. Be sensitive to, and address as needed, personal biases that may prevent equal treatment of all students in the school, classroom or athletic setting.
      4. Report as soon as possible, incidents of harassment and discrimination that are witnessed or otherwise brought to a Coach’s attention.
      5. Plan, coordinate and supervise all activities in their respective sport.
      6. Support the Director of Athletics in conducting all activities related in that particular sport and team.
      7. Establish training rules and procedures beyond the administrative regulations of the school district and to enforce them in a fair, consistent manner.
      8. Review and discuss with team members, parents, and assistant coaches prior to the first practice:
      a. Hazing Policy
      b. Bullying Prevention Policy
      c. Harassment Policy
      d. Administrative eligibility rules
      e. Training rules, attendance (school, team, coaches) policies
      f. Criteria for earning awards
      g. Expectations for student-athletes
      h. Transportation policies
      i. All-state and section policies (i.e., NYSPHSAA)
      9. Establish good public relations and good working relations with parents, district administrators, faculty and staff, community members and the media.
      11. Abide by the guidelines in the Coach’s Commitment.

      D. School Counselors are expected to:
      1. Maintain a climate of mutual respect and dignity for all students regardless of actual or perceived race, color, weight, national origin, ethnic group, religion, religious practice, disability, sexual orientation, gender (identity or expression), or sex, which will strengthen students’ self-concept and promote confidence to learn.
      2. Confront issues of discrimination and harassment or any situation that threatens the emotional or physical health or safety of any student, school employee or any person who is lawfully on school property or at a school function.
      3. Be sensitive to, and address as needed, personal biases that may prevent equal treatment of all students in the school, classroom or other setting.
      4. Report as soon as possible, incidents of harassment and discrimination that are witnessed or otherwise brought to a Counselor’s attention.
      5. Assist students in coping with peer pressure and emerging personal, social and emotional problems.
      6. Participate in teacher/student/counselor conferences and parent/teacher/student/counselor conferences, as necessary, as a way to resolve problems.
      7. Regularly review with students their educational progress and career plans. Meet in grade 8 with parents.
      8. Provide information to assist students with career planning.
      9. Encourage students to benefit from the curriculum and extra-curricular programs.
      10. Assist in students’ or building crisis.
      11. Act as a liaison between school, home and outside agencies.
      12. Participate in school-wide efforts to provide adequate supervision in all school spaces in conformity with the Taylor Law.
      13. Maintain confidentiality in accordance with federal and state law.
      E. Social Workers are expected to:
      1. Maintain a climate of mutual respect and dignity for all students regardless of actual or perceived race, color, weight, national origin, ethnic group, religion, religious practice, disability, sexual orientation, gender (identity or expression), or sex, which will strengthen students’ self-concept and promote confidence to learn.
      2. Confront issues of discrimination and harassment or any situation that threatens the emotional or physical health or safety of any student, school employee or any person who is lawfully on school property or at a school function.
      3. Be sensitive to, and address as needed, personal biases that may prevent equal treatment of all students in the school, classroom or other setting.
      4. Report as soon as possible, incidents of harassment and discrimination that are witnessed or otherwise brought to a Social Worker’s attention.
      5. Act as a liaison between school, home and outside agencies.
      6. Meet with students individually and in groups helping to develop social and coping skills.
      7. Provide information on a student’s emotional development to staff and families and assist in the assessment of a student’s emotional well being.
      8. Assist in a student or building crisis. Do risk assessments for suicide and violence potential.

      F. Nurses are expected to:
      1. Overview issues of school health such as immunizations and public health issues.
      2. Communicate with students and parents regarding absences due to illness.
      3. Help educate students understand health issues.
      4. Maintain health records for students.
      5. Assist in a student or building crisis.
      G. Director of Athletics is expected to:
      1. Plan, schedule, and coordinate supervision of interscholastic, extramural, and intramural day, evening and weekend events.
      2. Administer and direct coaches to ensure that they follow administrative procedures and enforce eligibility and training rules. Oversee regulations in the Coach’s Commitment.
      3. Administer and participate in the preparations of athletic events.
      4. Represent the school district at athletic meetings at the league and section level.
      5. Interpret and recommend the enforcement of all athletic regulations as specified by the state, section, and league associations, as well as school district policies.
      6. Communicate regularly with student-athletes, fellow administrators, faculty and staff, community members and the media to create good public and working relations.
      7. Supervise and direct coaches to ensure that they communicate and enforce the district’s bullying and hazing policies.
      H. Principals/Building Administrators/Instructional Administrators are expected to:
      1. Promote a safe, caring, orderly and stimulating school environment that supports active teaching and learning. Support programs preventing bullying and harassment.
      2. Ensure that students and staff have the opportunity to communicate regularly with the principal/administrators and approach the principal/administrators for redress of grievances.
      3. Evaluate on a regular basis all instructional programs to ensure infusion of civility education in the curriculum.
      4. Support the development of and student participation in appropriate extra-curricular activities.
      5. Be responsible for enforcing the Code of Conduct and ensuring that all cases are resolved promptly and fairly.
      6. Maintain a climate of mutual respect and dignity for all students regardless of actual or perceived race, color, weight, national origin, ethnic group, religion, religious practice, disability, sexual orientation, gender (identity or expression), or sex, which will strengthen students’ self-concept and promote confidence to learn.
      7. Confront issues of discrimination and harassment or any situation that threatens the emotional or physical health or safety of any student, school employee or any person who is lawfully on school property or at a school function.
      8. Be sensitive to, and address as needed, personal biases that may prevent equal treatment of all students in the school, classroom or office setting.
      9. Report as soon as possible, incidents of harassment and discrimination that are witnessed or otherwise brought to an instructional Administrator’s attention.
      10. Maintain confidentiality in accordance with federal and state laws.
      11. Provide support in the development of the Code of Conduct when called upon. Disseminate the Code of Conduct and anti-harassment policies.

      I. Transportation Supervisor/Assistant Supervisor is expected to:
      1. Oversee all aspects of the Transportation Department including drivers, bus aides, mechanics, 19-A personnel, office staff, fleet supervisor and secretaries.
      2. Evaluate all staff members and offer training to drivers.
      3. Develop transportation routes for all district schools as well as private/parochial and special needs students.
      4. Process student discipline forms.
      5. Monitor road conditions during winter and make recommendations to the superintendent regarding school delay or closing.
      6. Respond to concerns and complaints from the public.

      J. Bus Drivers are expected to:
      1. Maintain a climate of mutual respect and dignity for all students regardless of actual or perceived race, color, weight, national origin, ethnic group, religion, religious practice, disability, sexual orientation, gender (identity or expression), or sex, which will strengthen students’ self-concept and promote confidence to learn.
      2. Maintain a safe, orderly environment on school buses to help to prevent bullying and harassment.
      3. Oversee practice drills for bus safety.
      4. Use student discipline forms when necessary.
      5. Maintain positive communication with students and parents.
      6. Confront issues of discrimination and harassment or any situation that threatens the emotional or physical health or safety of any student, school employee or any person who is lawfully on school property or at a school function.
      7. Be sensitive to, and address as needed, personal biases that may prevent equal treatment of all students in the school or on the school bus.
      8. Report as soon as possible, incidents of harassment and discrimination that are witnessed or otherwise brought to a Driver’s attention.

      K. Support Staff are expected to:
      1. Promote a safe, caring, orderly school environment.
      2. Notify administration promptly of any concerns for student behavior or building safety.
      3. Participate in school safety training. Maintain positive relationships with students.
      4. Maintain a climate of mutual respect and dignity for all students regardless of actual or perceived race, color, weight, national origin, ethnic group, religion, religious practice, disability, sexual orientation, gender (identity or expression), or sex, which will strengthen students’ self-concept and promote confidence to learn.
      5. Confront issues of discrimination and harassment or any situation that threatens the emotional or physical health or safety of any student, school employee or any person who is lawfully on school property or at a school function.
      6. Be sensitive to, and address as needed, personal biases that may prevent equal treatment of all students in the school, classroom or any other setting.
      7. Report as soon as possible, incidents of harassment and discrimination that are witnessed or otherwise brought to an employee’s attention.

      L. Superintendent is expected to:
      1. Promote a safe, orderly and stimulating school environment that supports active teaching and learning for all students regardless of actual or perceived race or color, weight, national origin, ethnic group, religion, religious practices, disability, sexual orientation, gender or sex.
      2. Review with District administrators the policies of the Board of Education and state and federal laws relating to school operations and management.
      3. Inform the Board about educational trends relating to student discipline.
      4. Work to create instructional programs that minimize problems of misconduct and are sensitive to student and teacher needs.
      5. Work with District administrators in enforcing the Code of Conduct and ensuring that all cases are resolved promptly and fairly.
      6. Maintain confidentiality in accordance of federal and state law.
      7. Participate in school-wide efforts to provide adequate supervision in all school spaces.
      8. Address issues of harassment or any situation that threatens the emotional or physical health or safety of any student, school employee, or any person who is lawfully on school property or at a school function.
      9. Address personal biases that may prevent equal treatment of all students and staff.

      M. Board of Education is expected to:
      1. Promote a safe, orderly and stimulating school environment, supporting active teaching and learning for all students regardless of actual or perceived race, color, weight, national origin, ethnic group, religion, religious practice, disability, sexual orientation, gender or sex.
      2. Maintain confidentiality in accordance with federal and state law.
      3. Develop and recommend a budget that provides programs and activities that support achievement of the goals of the code of conduct.
      3. Collaborate with student, teacher, administrator, and parent organizations, school safety personnel and other school personnel to develop a code of conduct that clearly defines expectations for the conduct of students, district personnel and visitors on school property and at school functions.
      4. Adopt and review at least annually the district’s code of conduct to evaluate the code’s effectiveness and the fairness and consistency of its implementation.
      5. Lead by example by conducting Board meetings in a professional, respectful, courteous manner.
      6. Address issues of harassment or any situation that threatens the emotional or physical health or safety of any student, school employee, or any person who is lawfully on school property or at a school function.
      Address personal biases that may prevent equal treatment of all students and staff.

      N. Dignity Act Coordination
      1. Promote a safe, orderly and stimulating school environment, supporting active teaching and learning for all students regardless of actual or perceived race, color, weight, national origin, ethnic group, religion, religious practice, disability, sexual orientation, gender or sex.
      2. Oversee and coordinate the work of the district-wide and building-level bullying prevention committees.
      3. Identify curricular resources that support infusing civility in classroom instruction and classroom management; and provide guidance to staff as to how to access and implement those resources.
      4. Coordinate, with the Professional Development Committee, training in support of the bullying prevention committee.
      5. Be responsible for monitoring and reporting on the effectiveness of the district’s bullying prevention policy.
      6. Address issues of harassment or any situation that threatens the emotional or physical health or safety of any student, school employee, or any person who is lawfully on school property or at a school function.
      7. Address personal biases that may prevent equal treatment of all students and staff.

      Adopted: June 5, 2012

      5300.30 Code of Conduct – Prohibited Student Conduct

      The Board of Education expects all students to conduct themselves in an appropriate and civil manner, with proper regard for the rights and welfare of other students, district personnel and other members of the school community, and for the care of school facilities and equipment.
      The best discipline is self-imposed, and students must learn to assume and accept responsibility for their own behavior, as well as the consequences of their misbehavior. District personnel who interact with students are expected to use disciplinary action only when necessary and to place emphasis on educating students so that they may grow in self-discipline.
      The Board recognizes the need to make its expectations for student conduct while on school property or engaged in a school function specific and clear. The rules of conduct listed below are intended to do that and focus on safety and respect for the rights and property of others. Students who will not accept responsibility for their own behavior and who violate these school rules will be required to accept the consequences for their conduct.
      Students may be subject to disciplinary action, up to and including suspension from school, when they:

      A. Engage in conduct that is disorderly. Examples of disorderly conduct include, but are not limited to:
      1. Running in hallways.
      2. Making unreasonable noise.
      3. Using language or gestures that are profane, lewd, vulgar or abusive.
      4. Obstructing vehicular or pedestrian traffic.
      5. Engaging in any willful act which disrupts the normal operation of the school community.
      6. Trespassing. Students are not permitted in any school building, other than the one they regularly attend, without permission from the administrator, teacher, coach or advisor in charge of the building.
      7. Computer/electronic communications misuse, including any unauthorized use of computers, software, or internet/intranet account; accessing inappropriate websites; or any other violation of the district’s acceptable use policy. (See policy 4510.2)
      B. Engage in conduct that is insubordinate. Examples of insubordinate conduct include, but are not limited to:
      1. Failing to comply with the reasonable directions of teachers, school administrators or other school employees in charge of students or otherwise demonstrating disrespect.
      2. Lateness for, missing or leaving school without permission.
      3. Skipping detention.

      C. Engage in conduct that is disruptive. Examples of disruptive conduct include, but are not limited to:
      1. Failing to comply with the reasonable directions of teachers, school administrators or other school personnel in charge of students.
      2. Being frequently late for school or class.
      3. Being frequently unprepared for class.
      4. Inappropriate public sexual contact.
      5. Display or use of personal electronic devices, such as, but not limited to, cell phones, I-pods, digital cameras, in a manner that is in violation of district policy.
      D. Engage in conduct that is violent. Examples of violent conduct include, but are not limited to:
      1. Committing an act of violence (such as hitting, kicking, punching, and scratching) upon a teacher, administrator or other school employee or attempting to do so.
      2. Committing an act of violence (such as hitting, kicking, punching, and scratching) upon another student or any other person lawfully on school property or attempting to do so.
      3. Possessing a weapon. Authorized law enforcement officials are the only persons permitted to have a weapon in their possession while on school property or at a school function.
      4. Displaying what appears to be a weapon.
      5. Threatening to use any weapon or do bodily harm.
      6. Intentionally damaging or destroying the personal property of a student, teacher, administrator, other district employee or any person lawfully on school property, including graffiti or arson.
      7. Intentionally damaging or destroying school district property.
      E. Engage in any conduct that endangers the safety, physical or mental health or welfare of others. Examples of such conduct include, but are not limited to:
      1. Subjecting other students, school personnel or any other person lawfully on school property or attending a school function to danger by recklessly engaging in conduct which creates a substantial risk of physical injury.
      2. Stealing or attempting to steal the property of other students, school personnel or any other person lawfully on school property or attending a school function.

      3. Defamation, which includes making false or unprivileged statements or representations about an individual or identifiable group of individuals that harm the reputation of the person or the identifiable group by demeaning them.
      4. Discrimination, which may be based on a student’s actual or perceived race, color, creed, national origin, ethnic group, religion, religious practice, sex, gender (identity and expression), sexual orientation, weight or disability as a basis for treating another in a negative manner.
      5. Harassment, which includes a sufficiently severe action or persistent pervasive pattern of actions or statements directed at an identifiable individual or group which are intended to be, or which a reasonable person would perceive as ridiculous or demeaning. Harassment is also the creation of a hostile environment. (See policy 0115, Student Harassment and Bullying Prevention and Intervention for a more complete definition.)
      6. Intimidation, which includes engaging in actions or statements that put an individual in fear of bodily harm.
      7. Bullying, which may be a hostile activity which harms or induces fear through the threat of further aggression and/or creates terror.(See policy 0115 for a more complete definition.)
      8. Hazing, which includes an induction, initiation or membership process involving harassment (see policy 0115 for a more complete definition).
      9. Selling, using, distributing or possessing obscene material.
      10. Using vulgar or abusive language, cursing or swearing.
      11. Smoking a cigarette, cigar, pipe or using chewing or smokeless tobacco.
      12. Possessing, consuming, selling, offering, manufacturing, distributing or exchanging alcoholic beverages or illegal substances, or being under the influence of either. “Illegal substances” include, but are not limited to, inhalants, marijuana,
      13. Cocaine, LSD, PCP, amphetamines, heroin, steroids, look-alike drugs, and any synthetic version thereof, whether specifically illegal or not, commonly referred to as “designer drugs” which are substances designed and synthesized to mimic the intended effects and usages of, which are chemically substantially similar to, illegal drugs, which may or may not be labeled for human consumption.
      14. Inappropriately using or sharing prescription and over-the-counter drugs.
      15. Gambling in all forms.
      16. Indecent exposure, that is, exposure to sight of the private parts of the body in a lewd or indecent manner.
      17. Initiating a report warning of fire or other catastrophe without valid cause, misuse of 911, or discharging a fire extinguisher.
      18. Lying to school personnel which puts others at risk.

      F. Engage in misconduct while on a school bus. Students should behave appropriately while riding on district buses, to ensure their safety and that of other passengers and to avoid distracting the bus driver. Students are required to conduct themselves on the bus in a manner consistent with established standards for classroom behavior. Excessive noise, pushing, shoving and fighting will not be tolerated.
      G. Engage in any form of academic misconduct. Examples of academic misconduct include, but are not limited to:
      1. Plagiarism.
      2. Cheating.
      3. Copying.
      4. Altering records.
      5. Assisting another student in any of the above actions.
      H. Engage in off-campus misconduct that interferes with, or can reasonably be expected to substantially disrupt the educational process in the school or a school function. Such misconduct includes, but isn’t limited to, threatening or harassing students or school personnel through any means off-campus, including cyberbullying (for a complete definition of harassment, bullying and cyberbullying refer to policy 0115, Student Harassment and Bullying Prevention and Intervention).

      Adopted June 5, 2012
      Revised, Adopted November 20, 2012

      5300.45 Alternative Education

      When a student of any age is removed from class by a teacher or a student of compulsory attendance age is suspended from school pursuant to Education Law §3214, the district will take immediate steps to provide alternative means of instruction for the student. The Board of Education expects students, administrators, teachers and parents to make every effort to maintain student academic progress in the event of removal or suspension, and support student re-entry to the classroom at the conclusion of the disciplinary action.
      Cross-ref: 5313.3 Student Suspension

      Adopted November 5, 2014

      5300.55 Corporal Punishment

      Corporal punishment is any act of physical force upon a student for the purpose of punishing that student. Corporal punishment of any student by any district employee is strictly forbidden.
      However, in situations where alternative procedures and methods that do not involve the
      use of physical force cannot reasonably be used, reasonable physical force may be used to:

      1. Protect oneself, another student, teacher or any person from physical injury.
      2. Protect the property of the school or others.
      3. Restrain or remove a student whose behavior interferes with the orderly exercise and performance of school district functions, powers and duties, if that student has refused to refrain from further disruptive acts.

      The district will file all complaints about the use of corporal punishment with the Commissioner of Education in accordance with Commissioner’s regulations.

      Adoption date: January 9, 2018

      5300.60 Searches and Interrogations

      The Board of Education is committed to ensuring an atmosphere on school property and at school functions that is safe and orderly. To achieve this kind of environment, any school official authorized to impose a disciplinary penalty on a student may question a student about an alleged violation of law or the district code of conduct. Students are not entitled to any sort of “Miranda”-type warning before being questioned by school officials, nor are school officials required to contact a student’s parent before questioning the student. However, school officials will tell all students why they are being questioned.
      The Board authorizes the Superintendent of Schools, Building Principals, the school nurse and district security officials to conduct searches of students and their belongings, in most instances, with exceptions set forth below in A. and B., if the authorized school official has reasonable suspicion to believe that the search will result in evidence that the student violated the law or the district code of conduct.
      An authorized school official may conduct a search of a student’s belongings that is minimally intrusive, such as touching the outside of a book bag, without reasonable suspicion, so long as the school official has a legitimate reason for the very limited search.
      An authorized school official may search a student or the student’s belongings based upon information received from a reliable informant. Individuals, other than the district employees, will be considered reliable informants if they have previously supplied information that was accurate and verified, or they make an admission against their own interest, or they provide the same information that is received independently from other sources, or they appear to be credible and the information they are communicating relates to an immediate threat to safety. District employees will be considered reliable informants unless they are known to have previously supplied information that they knew was not accurate.
      Before searching a student or the student’s belongings, the authorized school official should attempt to get the student to admit that he or she possesses physical evidence that they violated the law or the district code, or get the student to voluntarily consent to the search. Searches will be limited to the extent necessary to locate the evidence sought.
      Whenever practicable, searches will be conducted in the privacy of administrative offices and students will be present when their possessions are being searched.

      A. Student Lockers, Desks and other School Storage Places

      The rules in this code of conduct regarding searches of students and their belongings do
      not apply to student lockers, desks and other school storage places. Students have no reasonable expectation of privacy with respect to these places and school officials retain complete control over them. This means that student lockers, desks and other school storage places may be subject to search at any time by school officials, without prior notice to students and without their consent.

      B. Strip searches

      A strip search is a search that requires a student to remove any or all of his or her clothing, other than an outer coat or jacket. Strip searches by school officials are prohibited, unless the school official believes there is an emergency situation that poses an immediate threat to the safety of the student or others.
      Strip searches may only be conducted by an authorized school official of the same sex as the student being searched and in the presence of another district professional employee who is also of the same sex as the student.
      School officials will attempt to notify the student’s parent by telephone before conducting a strip search, or in writing after the fact if the parent could not be reached by telephone.

      C. Treatment of Cell Phones

      Teachers and administrators are authorized to confiscate student cell phones that are being used in violation of the code of conduct and/or policy 5695, Student Use of Electronic Devices. Teachers and administrators are permitted to look at the screen of the cell phone and can request the student’s cooperation to search the cell phone further. Without a student’s permission, teachers and administrators should not undertake a more extensive search until conferring with the Superintendent or school attorney for guidance.

      D. Documentation of Searches

      The authorized school official conducting the search shall be responsible for promptly recording the following information about each search:

      1. Name, age and grade of student searched.
      2. Reasons for the search.
      3. Name of any informant(s).
      4. Purpose of search (that is, what item(s) were being sought).
      5. Type and scope of search.
      6. Person conducting search and his or her title and position.
      7. Witnesses, if any, to the search.
      8. Time and location of search.
      9. Results of search (that is, what items(s) were found).
      10. Disposition of items found.
      11. Time, manner and results of parental notification.

      The Principal or the Principal’s designee shall be responsible for the custody, control and disposition of any illegal or dangerous item taken from a student. The Principal or his or her designee shall clearly label each item taken from the student and retain control of the item(s), until the item is turned over to the police. The Principal or his or her designee shall be responsible for personally delivering dangerous or illegal items to police authorities.

      E. Police Involvement in Searches and Interrogations of Students

      District officials are committed to cooperating with police officials and other law enforcement authorities to maintain a safe school environment. Police officials, however, have limited authority to interview or search students in schools or at school functions, or to use school facilities in connection with police work. Police officials may enter school property or a school function to question or search a student or to conduct a formal investigation involving students only if they have:

      1. A search or an arrest warrant; or
      2. Probable cause to believe a crime has been committed on school property or at a school function.

      Before police officials are permitted to question or search any student, the Principal or his or her designee shall first try to notify the student’s parent to give the parent the opportunity to be present during the police questioning or search. If the student’s parent cannot be contacted prior to the police questioning or search, the questioning or search shall not be conducted, unless the student is 16 years of age or older. The Principal or designee will also be present during any police questioning or search of a student on school property or at a school function.
      Students who are questioned by police officials on school property or at a school function will be afforded the same rights they have outside the school. This means:

      1. They must be informed of their legal rights.
      2. They may remain silent if they so desire.
      3. They may request the presence of an attorney.

      F. Child Protective Services Investigations

      Consistent with the district’s commitment to keep students safe from harm and the obligation of school officials to report to child protective services when they have reasonable cause to suspect that a student has been abused or maltreated, the district will cooperate with local child protective services workers who wish to conduct interviews of students on school property relating to allegations of suspected child abuse, and/or neglect, or custody investigations.
      All requests by child protective services to interview a student on school property shall be made directly to Principal or his or her designee. The Principal or designee shall set the time and place of the interview. The Principal or designee shall decide if it is necessary and appropriate for a school official to be present during the interview, depending on the age of the student being interviewed and the nature of the allegations. If the nature of the allegations is such that it may be necessary for the student to remove any of his or her clothing in order for the child protective services worker to verify the allegations, the school nurse or other district medical personnel must be present during that portion of the interview. No student may be required to remove his or her clothing in front of a child protective services worker or school district official of the opposite sex.

      A child protective services worker may not remove a student from school property without a court order, unless the worker reasonably believes that the student would be subject to danger of abuse if not he or she were not removed from school before a court order can reasonably be obtained. If the worker believes the student would be subject to danger of abuse, the worker may remove the student without a court order and without the parent’s consent.

      Adopted January 19, 2016

      5300.60-R Searches and Interrogations Regulation (was 5330-R)

      1. Pursuant to Board policy, students may be subject to searches of their possessions where reasonable individualized suspicion exists to conduct such search.
      2. Searches may be conducted by the Superintendent of Schools, a Building Principal, Assistant or House Principals and always in the presence of another staff member.
      3. A search based upon the reasonable belief that the health or safety of those in our schools is seriously and immediately threatened may be conducted with as much speed as is required to protect persons and property.
      4. The request for a search of a student=s possessions shall be directed to the Building Principal or Assistant or House Principal, who shall attempt to obtain an admission from the student of possession of the illegal matter or matter which otherwise constitutes a threat.
      5. In the event that a voluntary admission is not forthcoming, and the administrator still believes there is reasonable cause, he/she shall attempt to obtain voluntary consent to the search.
      6. Whenever practical, the student should be present when his/her possessions are being searched.
      7. School officials are not authorized to conduct intrusive searches (i.e., a search which requires a staff member to touch a student=s person, or a search which requires a student to remove any or all clothing, with the exception of a search of outer coats and jackets).
      8. School officials will attempt to notify parents by telephone and follow up in writing in the event that a search has been initiated.
      9. When in the judgment of the authorized administrator, there is probable cause to believe that students and/or staff are threatened, and the suspected student(s) will not cooperate, the authorized administrator shall notify public safety officials to conduct an investigation within the limits of the law.
      10. The authorized administrator shall be responsible for the custody, control and disposition of any illegal or dangerous matter taken from a student. He or she will remain in control of such substance or objects unless the same are delivered to police authorities whereupon it shall be the responsibility of said authorized administrator to personally deliver such matter to police authorities.
      11. Students have no reasonable expectation of privacy rights in school lockers, desks or other school storage places, and the school exercises overriding control over such school property. In addition, personal vehicles on school property may be searched upon reasonable suspicion of a violation of the code of conduct. Through the student handbook, the Building Principal shall give notice to all students that lockers, desks and other school storage places may be subject to inspection at any time by school officials.
      12. No police officer may enter the schools of the district for the purposes of interrogating, searching or conducting formal investigations of students unless he/she has a warrant for arrest or search, or unless a crime has been committed on school property.
      13. No police officer shall be allowed to perform a student search unless authorized by a search warrant or upon demonstrating probable cause to establish that the commission of an illegal act is occurring on school premises. In the case of a police officer presenting a search warrant, the authorized administrator shall first attempt to inform the parent or guardian of the police demand to search in order to afford the parent or guardian an opportunity to be present at the search. In the event that the parent or guardian cannot be contacted prior to a police search, the parent or guardian shall be informed of the search in writing by the authorized administrator as soon thereafter as is practical.
      14. When police have properly entered the school and desire to interrogate a student, the authorized administrator shall first attempt to notify the parent or guardian of the student involved by telephone prior to any such interrogation or by telephone or in writing after the fact if the parent or guardian could not be reached beforehand. If possible, the student=s parent or guardian should be present. An appropriate staff member as designated by the authorized administrator, shall also be present during any interrogation of a student by police on school property.
      15. An involved student and/or his/her parent/guardian who feels that the above regulations have been abridged or that the application was overly zealous may submit a written complaint which states the particulars to the Office of the Superintendent of Schools. The Superintendent or his/her designee shall conduct an investigation and render a statement of findings. He/she shall take appropriate action if warranted.

      Documentation of Searches
      The following factors should be considered in order to determine whether reasonable individualized suspicion exists with regard to a search of a student=s possessions:

      1. Eyewitness accounts

      Note: by whom

      date/time
      place
      detailed description of events/items witnessed

      2. Information from a “reliable source”

      Note: from whom

      time received
      how information was received who received information complete summary of information

      3. Suspicious behavior: describe behavior and explain suspicions
      If a search is conducted, the following information should be documented:

      1. Time and location of search
      2. Age of student
      3. Circumstances contributing to exigency of search
      4. Purpose of search: what item(s) were being searched for?
      5. Type of search and scope thereof
      6. Person conducting search and his/her title/position
      7. Witnesses of search
      8. Results of search: material(s) found, disposition of such material/s
      9. Results of parental notification

      Regulations Pertaining to Child Protective Services= Investigations
      From time to time, Child Protective Services may desire to conduct interviews of students on school property. Such interviews generally pertain to allegations of suspected child abuse and/or neglect. The following guidelines apply to all such interviews:

      1. This regulation shall apply to all interviews requested by the Department of Social Services, Child Protective Services, as it pertains to that agency=s investigations involving a student. Such investigation shall include, but shall not be limited to, suspected child abuse, suspected child neglect and custody investigations.
      2. All requests by Child Protective Services to interview a student of the district on school property shall be made directly to the building principal who shall be responsible for notifying the Office of the Superintendent.
      3. The time and place of such interview shall be designated by the building principal in his/her absolute discretion.
      4. The principal or designee shall decide if it is necessary and appropriate for a school official to be present during the interview.
      5. If the nature of the allegations is such that it may be necessary for the student to remove any of his or her clothing in order for the child protective services worker to verify the allegations, the school nurse or other district medical personnel must be present during that portion of the interview. No student may be required to remove his or her clothing in front of a child protective services worker or school district official of the opposite sex.
      6. This regulation is for the protection and benefit of the students of the district and every reasonable effort shall be made to accommodate the request of the Department of Social Services, Child Protective Services, as it relates to the aforementioned investigations.

      Note: Regulation added
      Reviewed October 5, 1999
      Reviewed December 13, 2011
      (Policy # changed 2015-16 Year from 5330-R)

      5300.65 Visitors to the Schools

      The Board recognizes that the success of the school program depends, in part, on support by the larger community. The Board wishes to foster a positive climate where members of the community have the opportunity to observe the hard work and accomplishments of the student, teachers and other staff. Since schools are a place of work and learning, however, certain limits must be set for such visits. The Principal or his or her designee is responsible for all persons in the building and on the grounds. For these reasons, the following rules apply to visitors to the schools:

      1. Anyone who is not a regular staff member or student of the school will be considered a visitor.
      2. All visitors to the school must enter through the designated single point of entry, present government issued photo identification, sign the visitor’s register and will be issued a visitor’s identification badge, which must be worn at all times while in the school or on school grounds. The visitor must return the identification badge to the Principal’s office before leaving the building.
      3. Visitors attending school functions that are open to the public after regular school hours, such as parent-teacher organization meetings or public gatherings, are not required to register.
      4. Parents or citizens who wish to observe a classroom or school activity while school is in session are required to arrange such visits in advance with the classroom teacher(s) and Building Principal, so that class disruption is kept to a minimum.
      5. Teachers should not take class time to discuss individual matters with visitors.
      6. Any unauthorized person on school property will be reported to the Principal or his or her designee. Unauthorized persons will be asked to leave. The police may be called if the situation warrants.
      7. Student visitors from other schools or past students, unless they have a specific reason and prior approval of the building principal or an appropriate administrator, shall not be admitted to the building.
      8. New students accompanied by their parents are always welcome to visit the main office (K-5) or guidance office (6-12) for information, once the central registration process has been completed.
      9. All visitors are expected to abide by the rules for public conduct on school property contained in this code of conduct.

      Revised and Adopted May 7, 2013
      Revised November 4, 2015

      5300.65-R Visitors Policy Regulation

      In an effort to promote effective communication between the citizens of the community and the school system, the Board of Education encourages parents and other citizens to visit their schools periodically during the course of the school year when school is in session. At all times, the principal or his/her designee is authorized to take any action necessary to secure the safety of students, school personnel and visitors. Unauthorized visitors or individuals who interfere with the learning environment and are disruptive shall be requested to leave school premises immediately, and will be subject to arrest and prosecution pursuant to the New York State Penal Law, if they refuse.
      Visitors to the schools of the district shall be governed by the following rules at the time when students are in attendance:

      1. For security purposes, the district maintains a single point of entry for each school building and as such, visitors to our schools must use the designated front entrance. All other building entrance doors shall be locked. At Guilderland High School, a second monitored point of entry is available in the rear of the facility leading to the gymnasium area and is maintained for students and staff only.
      2. Upon entering any school building, all visitors shall report to the designated reception area for the purpose of completing the necessary sign-in procedures. The primary function of the receptionist is to greet visitors, maintain school sign-in and sign-out procedures, and check identification. If any visitor does not follow established procedures as outlined in this regulation, the main office shall be alerted immediately.
      3. Upon completion of the sign-in procedures, each visitor will be issued a Visitor’s Badge.
      4. Once issued, the Visitor’s Badge must be displayed at all times.
      5. For special events during the school day, alternative procedures may be enacted for issuing visitor badges. Registration shall not be required for school functions open to the public beyond the regular school day, whether or not school-related.
      6. Parents or guardians wishing to speak with a specific teacher concerning the progress of a child must first make an appointment with the teacher. In addition, parents are encouraged to visit counselors, school nurses, school psychologists and other support personnel, by appointment, in order to discuss any problems or concerns the parent may have regarding their child, whether or not school-related.
      7. All Guilderland Central School District employees are required to display conspicuously their identification badges during work hours while in any school building.
      8. In order to protect students, staff, and facilities, no unauthorized persons shall be permitted to enter school premises unless they first report to the the designated reception area and have a legitimate reason for being there. Any parents, visitors, or members of the public noticed at any time during school hours without a Visitor’s Badge or District ID should be reported immediately to the principal or Main Office.
      9. The principal or his/her designee is authorized to take any action necessary to secure the safety of students and school personnel. Unauthorized visitors shall be requested to leave school premises immediately, and will be subject to arrest and prosecution for trespassing, pursuant to the New York State Penal Law, if they refuse.
      10. For those potential visitors other than parents or guardians, the principal of the school or his/her designee must be contacted by the person or group wishing to visit, and prior approval must be obtained for the visit.
      11. Any visitor wishing to inspect school records or interview students on school premises must comply with all applicable Board policies and administrative regulations.
      12. A copy of the Board of Education policy and regulations on Visitors to Schools will be available at the the designated reception area and on the district’s website.

      Reviewed May 11, 1999
      Revised February 28, 2006
      Revised and Reviewed April 23, 2013
      Revised and Reviewed November 4, 2015

      5300.70 Code of Conduct – Public Conduct on School Property

      The district is committed to providing an orderly, respectful environment that is conducive to learning. To create and maintain this kind of an environment, it is necessary to regulate public conduct on school property and at school functions. For purposes of this section of the code, “public” shall mean all persons when on school property or attending a school function including students, teachers and district personnel.
      The restrictions on public conduct on school property and at school functions contained in this code are not intended to limit freedom of speech or peaceful assembly. The district recognizes that free inquiry and free expression are indispensable to the objectives of the district. The purpose of this code is to maintain public order and prevent abuse of the rights of others.
      All persons on school property or attending a school function shall conduct themselves in a respectful and orderly manner. In addition, all persons on school property or attending a school function are expected to be properly attired for the purpose they are on school property.

      A. Prohibited Conduct
      No person, either alone or with others, shall:
      1. Intentionally injure any person or threaten to do so.
      2. Intentionally damage or destroy school district property or the personal property of a teacher, administrator, other district employee or any person lawfully on school property, including graffiti or arson.
      3. Disrupt the orderly conduct of classes, school programs or other school activities.
      4. Distribute or wear materials on school grounds or at school functions that are obscene, advocate illegal action, appear libelous, obstruct the rights of others, or are disruptive to the school program.
      5. Intimidate, harass or discriminate against any person on the basis of actual or perceived race, creed, color, weight, national origin, ethnic group, religion, religious practice, disability, sex, sexual orientation, or gender (including gender identity and expression).
      6. Enter any portion of the school premises without authorization or remain in any building or facility after it is normally closed.
      7. Obstruct the free movement of any person in any place to which this code applies.
      8. Violate the traffic laws, parking regulations or other restrictions on vehicles.
      9. Possess, consume, sell, offer, manufacture, distribute or exchange alcoholic beverages, controlled or illegal substances or any synthetic versions (whether or not specifically illegal or labeled for human consumption), or be under the influence of either on school property or at a school function
      10. Possess or use weapons in or on school property or at a school function, except in the case of law enforcement officers or except as specifically authorized by the school district.
      11. Loiter on or about school property.
      12. Gamble on school property or at school functions.
      13. Refuse to comply with any reasonable order of identifiable school district officials performing their duties.
      14. Willfully incite others to commit any of the acts prohibited by this code.
      15. Violate any federal or state statute, local ordinance or Board policy while on school property or while at a school function.

      B. Penalties
      Persons who violate this code shall be subject to the following penalties:
      1. Visitors. Their authorization, if any, to remain on school grounds or at the school function shall be withdrawn and they shall be directed to leave the premises. If they refuse to leave, they shall be subject to ejection.
      2. Students. They shall be subject to disciplinary action as the facts may warrant, in accordance with the due process requirements.
      3. Tenured faculty members. They shall be subject to disciplinary action as the facts may warrant in accordance with Education Law
      § 3020-a or any other legal rights that they may have.
      4. Staff members in the classified service of the civil service entitled to the protection of Civil Service Law § 75. They shall be subject to immediate ejection and to disciplinary action as the facts may warrant in accordance with Civil Service Law § 75 or any other legal rights that they may have.
      5. Staff members other than those described in subdivisions 3 and 4. They shall be subject to warning, reprimand, suspension or dismissal as the facts may warrant in accordance with any legal rights they may have.

      Enforcement
      The Principal or his/her designee shall be responsible for enforcing the conduct required by this code.

      When the Principal or his or her designee sees an individual engaged in prohibited conduct, which in his or her judgment does not pose any immediate threat of injury to persons or property, the Principal or designee shall tell the individual that the conduct is prohibited and attempt to persuade the individual to stop. The Principal or designee shall also warn the individual of the consequences for failing to stop. If the person refuses to stop engaging in the prohibited conduct, or if the person’s conduct poses an immediate threat of injury to persons or property, the Principal or designee shall have the individual removed immediately from school property or the school function. If necessary, local law enforcement authorities will be contacted to assist in removing the person.
      The district shall initiate disciplinary action against any student or staff member, as appropriate, with the “Penalties” section above. In addition, the district reserves its right to pursue a civil or criminal legal action against any person violating the code.
      Note: Replace Policy #1520
      Adopted June 5, 2012
      Revised, Adopted November 20, 2012

      5300.75 Code of Conduct – Dissemination and Review

      A. Dissemination of Code of Conduct

      The Board will work to ensure that the community is aware of this code of conduct by:

      1. Providing copies of an age-appropriate, written in plain language, summary of the code to all students at an general assembly to be held at the beginning of each school year.
      2. Providing a plain language summary to all parents at the beginning of the school year, and thereafter on request.
      3. Posting the complete code of conduct on the district’s website.
      4. Providing all current teachers and other staff members with a copy of the code and a copy of any amendments to the code as soon as practicable after adoption.
      5. Providing all new employees with a copy of the current code of conduct when they are first hired.
      6. Making copies of the complete code available for review by students, parents and other community members.

      The Board will sponsor a professional development program for all district staff members to ensure the effective implementation of the code of conduct. The Superintendent may solicit the recommendations of the district staff, particularly teachers and administrators, regarding professional development programs pertaining to the management and discipline of students. On-going professional development will be included in the district’s professional development plan, as needed.

      B. Review of Code of Conduct

      The Board will review this code of conduct every year and update it as necessary. In conducting the review, the Board will consider how effective the code’s provisions have been and whether the code has been applied fairly and consistently.
      The Board may appoint an advisory committee to assist in reviewing the code and the district’s response to code of conduct violations. The committee will be made up of representatives of student, teacher, administrator, and parent organizations, school safety personnel and other school personnel.
      Before adopting any revisions to the code, the Board will hold at least one public hearing at which school personnel, parents, students and any other interested party may participate.

      The code of conduct and any amendments to it will be filed with the Commissioner of Education, in a manner prescribed by the Commissioner, no later than 30 days after adoption.

      Adopted: June 5, 2012

      5310 Student Discipline

      No social interaction, whether at home, at school, or in the community, can be trulybeneficial or productive without established norms of personal behavior and consideration. These norms, or rules, are best learned and observed in an atmosphere which promotes understanding and social responsibility even in the context of an authoritative structure. This requires that discipline be consciously taught as a social and personal responsibility rather than merely external control from authority figures.
      The Board of Education believes that each student can reasonably be expected to be responsible for his/her own behavior. The school administration shall develop and disseminate rules of conduct, focusing on personal safety and respect for the rights and property of others, to be consistently applied in the classrooms and throughout the school. Students who fail to meet this expected degree of responsibility and violate school rules may be subject to appropriate disciplinary action, counseling, and more regulated supervision.
      Discipline is most effective when it deals directly with the problem at the time and place it occurs, and in a way that is viewed as fair and impartial by the student. Therefore, before seeking outside assistance, the staff member will first attempt to create a change of behavior. When the staff member has made every reasonable effort to bring about positive behavioral change, and has been unsuccessful, the staff member will bring the matter to the attention of the administration. The staff member and an administrator will develop a strategy for dealing with the problem.
      Disciplinary action, when necessary, will be firm and fair in order to be most effective in changing behavior. Pursuant to section 100.2 of the Commissioner’s Regulations, such action will be appropriate to the seriousness of the offense. Extreme penalties (See Policy #5313, extreme penalties are defined as those numbered 7-14), will not be assigned without first reviewing the student’s disciplinary records and considering the circumstances which led to the improper behavior.

      Early Identification and Resolution of Student Discipline Problems

      Teacher, pupil service personnel, administrators and other staff will report students to the building administrator or his/her designee when they believe such students present a discipline problem. The building administrator or his/her designee will conduct an investigation of the reports, which may include conferences with the complainant, student, parents, teachers, other pupil service personnel or others, as he/she deems appropriate for the early identification and resolution of the suspected problem. If he/she suspects that the problem may be a manifestation of a disability, he/she will refer the matter to the Instructional Study Team. Should the determination of the Instructional Study Team be that the behavior is a manifestation of a disability, the matter will be referred to the Committee on Special Education (CSE) in the manner prescribed by §200.4 of the Commissioner’s Regulations and by district policy.

      The Superintendent will develop forms necessary for the implementation of this policy.

      Discipline Policy for Students with Disabilities

      The Board recognizes that it may be necessary to suspend, remove or otherwise discipline students with disabilities to address disruptive or problem behavior. The Board also recognizes that students with disabilities are afforded certain procedural protections whenever school authorities intend to impose discipline upon them. The Board is committed to ensuring that the procedures followed for suspending, removing or otherwise disciplining students with disabilities are consistent with the procedural safeguards required by applicable laws and regulations.

      Inservice Programs for Staff

      The Superintendent of Schools shall solicit the recommendations of the teaching staff and administrators regarding inservice programs pertaining to the management and discipline of students. Within budget constraints and needs, the Board will sponsor such programs.
      The district will provide the following types of materials and activities to assist staff with their concerns for disciplinary problems:

      1. related literature;
      2. workshops on conference days;
      3. inservice classes to train staff in present trends and research; and
      4. consultants to those members of the staff needing specific techniques in maintaining control in the learning environment.

      Adopted February 8, 2000
      Revised, Adopted June 17, 2014

      5312.2 Dangerous Weapons in School

      With the sole exception of authorized law enforcement, no student or adult shall have in his or her possession upon school premises any rifle, shotgun, pistol, revolver, other firearm, knives, dangerous chemicals, explosives, or any object which is a firearm as defined in 18 USC§921 for purposes of the Gun-Free Schools Act. It also means any other gun, BB gun, pistol, revolver, shotgun, rifle, machine gun, disguised gun, dagger, dirk, razor, stiletto, switchblade knife, gravity knife, brass knuckles, sling shot, metal knuckle knife, box cutters, cane sword, electronic dart gun, Kung Fu star, electronic
      stun gun, pepper spray or other noxious spray, explosive or incendiary bomb, or other device, instrument, material or substance that can cause physical injury or death when used to cause physical injury or death and not necessary for school activities and which could be used as a weapon.
      School premises shall be defined as property held in the name of the school district and/or areas inhabited by staff and students while engaged in activities associated with school district activities such as, but not limited to, field trips, excursions, and athletic contests
      Any student found guilty of bringing a firearm, as defined in section 921 of Title 18 of the United States Code* onto school property after a hearing has been provided pursuant to section 3214 of the Education Law will be subject to at least a one-year suspension from school. However, after this penalty has been determined, the Superintendent of Schools will review the penalty and may modify such suspension on a case-by-case basis. If the Superintendent believes a one-year suspension penalty to be excessive, he/she may modify the penalty based on criteria including but not limited to:

      1. the age of the student;
      2. the student’s grade in school;
      3. the student’s prior disciplinary record;
      4. the Superintendent’s belief that other forms of discipline may be more effective;
      5. input from parents, teachers and/or others; and
      6. other extenuating circumstances.

      The Superintendent shall refer any student, under the age of 16, who has been determined to have brought a firearm to school to Family Court; students over the age of 16 will be referred to the appropriate law enforcement authorities.
      Students with disabilities can only be suspended consistent with the provisions of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act and Article 89 of the Education Law.
      Authorized law enforcement officers are the only people permitted on school property to have a weapon in their possession. Persons other than students found to be in possession of a weapon, as defined above, shall be subject to appropriate disciplinary procedures, including but not limited to the criminal justice system, and/or when applicable, laws and regulations governing employee discipline.

      Adopted September 14, 1999
      Reviewed, Adopted November 17, 2009
      Revised, Adopted June 17, 2014

      5313 Penalties

      Depending upon the nature of the violation, the Board of Education stipulates that student discipline be progressive, i.e., a student’s first violation should merit a lighter penalty than subsequent violations. Staff members imposing such penalty take into account all other relevant factors in determining the appropriate penalty. The above penalties may be imposed either alone or in combination. In the event that penalties are imposed, staff members will make reasonable efforts to notify parents or guardians.
      The range of penalties which may be imposed for violations of the student disciplinary code includes the following:

      1. verbal warning
      2. written warning
      3. written notification to parent(s) or guardian(s)
      4. probation
      5. reprimand
      6. detention
      7. suspension from transportation
      8. suspension from athletic participation
      9. suspension from social or extracurricular activities
      10. suspension of other privileges
      11. exclusion from a particular class
      12. in-school suspension
      13. involuntary transfer
      14. suspension

      Initiation of a Student Disciplinary Proceeding

      As a general rule, there shall be an expectation that staff members will inform and solicit the support of a child’s parent(s) or guardian(s) when attempting to bring about positive behavioral change in a student’s conduct. Any staff member, administrator, board member, parent(s) or guardian(s) or other person may report a violation of the student disciplinary code to the Building Principal or his/her designee. He/She may then make an investigation of the charges as deemed appropriate and institute an informal or disciplinary proceeding, and/or make a referral to the Committee on Special Education, as deemed necessary.
      When discipline administered by a staff member does not result in acceptable student behavior, the staff member must inform the Building Principal, who will then take the following action:

      1. Initial Referral – conference with Building Principal and staff member(s) concerned
      2. Repeated Referral to Principal – conference with Building Principal, staff member, student and student’s parent/guardian.
      3. Suspension – If the severity of the situation warrants, or the student is a habitual offender, the school authorities may suspend the student or students involved, as outlined in policy 5313.3, Student Suspension.

      This policy and the Board’s rules and regulations for the maintenance of public order on school property will be publicized and explained by the teaching staff to all students on an annual basis. With the expectation that parents will have an opportunity to review student handbooks which will be available to students annually, the Board requests the continued assistance of parents or guardians in supporting the code. The school district reserves the right to impose penalties for inappropriate student conduct where there is a reasonable belief that the student or parent should have known the contents of this policy and regulations. [Parent(s) or guardian(s) who disagree with the penalty imposed or the process followed by the staff member are accorded redress as outlined in Policy 1400, Public Complaints.]
      The Board recognizes a student’s right to a Superintendent’s hearing before a suspension from attendance in excess of five days and the right to an appeal of such a suspension to the Board pursuant to Education Law §3214 and Policy 5313.3, Student Suspension.
      If a criminal offense such as, but not limited to false fire alarms, vandalism, use and possession of weapons has been committed, the police will be notified.

      Alternatives to Penalties

      The following are suggested possibilities for alternative courses of action to take when a student’s behavior is in violation of the discipline code:

      1. student-teacher “good faith” agreements regarding disciplinary or remedial measures;
      2. teams of students, staff members, and parents working with disruptive students and frustrated teachers;
      3. outside professional help for both students and teachers;
      4. alternative educational experiences, programs, and environments for students;
      5. class meetings or advisor group discussions on school standards and procedures or on troublesome incidents or particular problems;
      6. case conferences involving a student, parent, and all involved or concerned staff members; prescription for future supportive-corrective measures;
      7. program and system of rewards for good citizenship;
      8. advance planning by staff for containment and handling of potentially difficult situations;
      9. group guidance sessions for students with common concerns or problems; and
      10. law-related instructional units and elective courses.

      Adopted February 29, 2000
      Reviewed, Adopted November 17, 2009
      Revised, Adopted June 17, 2014

      5313.1 Detention

      The Guilderland Central School District Board of Education uses detention of students as one method of discipline. A student who violates the student disciplinary code may be kept after school by the school building administrator or any member of the faculty. The Board of Education strongly encourages building administrators and faculty members to work with the student in an attempt to address the root cause of the misbehavior/incident and, when appropriate, work with the student to design remedial and constructive opportunities.
      A record of detentions will be kept at the appropriate house principal’s office at Farnsworth Middle School, assistant principal’s office at Guilderland High School, and at the principal’s office in the elementary buildings. Once a student is assigned detention, the parent or guardian will be notified the day of the incident. Access to transportation will be provided.

      Adopted October 19, 1999
      Revised and Adopted May 11, 2010
      Revised and Adopted June 17, 2014

      5313.2 In-school Detention

      The Board of Education recognizes the importance of school attendance. Therefore, suspension from school must be viewed as a last resort in dealing with student disciplinary infractions. The Board also recognizes the need to remove unruly or disruptive students from the regular class so that learning can take place in the classrooms.
      The Board directs the Superintendent to maintain an in-school detention program
      including assurance of appropriate supervision and guidelines associated with its imposition.

      Adopted November 16, 1999
      Revised and Adopted January 10, 2012

      5313.2-R In-school Detention Regulation

      Students may be assigned to in-school detention for a specified period of time. Students may not attend classes during this time unless a special request is made by a teacher and that request is approved by an administrator.

      1. At the discretion of the Superintendent of Schools or the building administrator, a student who would otherwise be subject to a detention from attendance as the result of a disciplinary infraction may be placed on in-school detention for a period not to exceed five (5) school days.
      2. Prior to the imposition of an in-school detention, the Superintendent or the building administrator shall provide the student with an opportunity to explain the facts and circumstances surrounding the alleged infraction leading to the imposition of an in-school detention.
      3. Upon imposition of an in-school detention, the student’s parent(s) or guardian shall be notified of the dates of the in-school detention and a description of the incident(s) which resulted in the in-school detention.
      4. The student’s teachers will be notified in writing that alternative instruction assignments for the period of in-school detention should be provided to the student and or sent to the in-school detention room.
      5. The suspended student shall report at the beginning of the next school day to the in-school detention room. He/She must come prepared with books and materials necessary to complete alternative instructional assignments.
      6. The student will remain in the in-school detention room during the full school day with appropriate breaks at mid-morning and mid-afternoon. He/She is expected to work the entire day.
      7. The in-school detention room will retain an atmosphere of quiet, be conducive to study and have strict rules of behavior.
      8. The person responsible for the supervision of students in the in-school detention room will enforce the rules of behavior in the in-school detention room and will render tutorial assistance where and when appropriate. If necessary, the subject teacher will be contacted for assistance. The in-school detention room staff member will also be alert to student behaviors or problems which may require referral to the Committee on Special Education, school psychologist, guidance counselor, or other professional.
      9. Completed assignments will be turned in to the in-school detention room staff member. Students will be encouraged to attend extra help after school where needed.
      10. No more than 15 students will be assigned to one in-school detention room staff member.
      11. A student’s failure to conform to these regulations will result in mandated detention, extended in-school detention or out-of-school .
      12. Parents will be notified by telephone of the child’s assignment to the in-school detention room as quickly as possible and generally before the student begins his/her assignment.

      Reviewed November 16, 1999
      Reviewed December 13, 2011

      5313.3 Student Suspension

      The Superintendent of Schools will prepare and issue such regulations (consistent with the laws, statutes and regulations of the State of New York) as necessary to establish procedures for the suspension of students.
      The Board of Education, the Superintendent and Building Principals will have the power to suspend a student who, in their judgment, is insubordinate or disorderly, or whose conduct endangers the safety, health or welfare of others, or whose physical or mental condition endangers the health, safety or welfare of himself/herself or of others for periods not to exceed five school days. When the building principal contemplates a suspension in excess of five days, an authority which is accorded to the Superintendent/Board of Education, the Superintendent will provide written notification of the suspension to the student’s parent(s) or guardian(s) and will afford the opportunity for a hearing with respect to the basis of such suspension. The notice and hearing will comply with the Education Law and Commissioner’s Regulations as outlined in the related regulation, 5313.3-R.
      An out-of-school suspension may not be imposed without notification of a parent or guardian of the student.
      A student of compulsory attendance age will be offered alternative instruction in the event that he/she is suspended from regular instruction.

      Adopted March 28, 2000
      Adopted January 10, 2012

      5313.3-R Student Suspension Regulation

      The following procedural elements are applicable to the initiation and processing of student suspensions. A student who is insubordinate or disorderly, or whose conduct endangers the safety, health or welfare of others, or whose physical or mental condition endangers the health, safety or welfare of himself/herself or of others, may be suspended.
      The Board of Education retains its authority for the suspension of students. The Board places the prime responsibility for such suspension(s) with the Superintendent of Schools, and to the Building Principals in cases of suspension for up to five (5) days.
      The Building Principal, in processing a case for suspension, shall gather the facts relevant to the matter and shall record them for subsequent presentation, if necessary.
      If a suspension of five (5) days or less is determined to be the appropriate form of disciplinary action, the Superintendent/Building Principal shall immediately notify the student, the student’s parent(s) or guardian(s) orally that the student has been suspended from school. If possible, such notice will also be provided by telephone.
      Every reasonable effort will be made to provide written notice by personal delivery, express mail delivery, or equivalent means reasonably calculated to assure receipt of the notice within twenty-four (24) hours of the suspension at the last known address(es) of the parent(s) or guardian(s).
      Both the oral and the written notice shall provide a description of the charges against the student, and the incident(s) which resulted in the suspension and shall inform the parent(s) or guardian(s) of their right to request an immediate informal conference with the Building Principal.
      Both the notice and informal conference shall be in the dominant language or mode of communication used by the parent(s) or guardian(s).
      At this conference, the parent(s) or guardian(s) shall be permitted to ask questions of complaining witnesses under such procedures as may be established by the Superintendent. After the conference, the Building Principal shall promptly advise the parent(s) or guardian(s) of his/her decision and that they may appeal the decision to the Superintendent.

      When in consultation with the Building Principal, the Superintendent agrees that a suspension of at least five (5) days is warranted, he/she shall give reasonable notice to such pupil and the parent(s) or guardian(s) of their right to a fair hearing. At this time the pupil shall have the right of representation by counsel, with the right to question witnesses against him/her and present witnesses and other evidence on his/her behalf. The Superintendent shall personally hear and determine the proceeding or may, in his/her discretion, designate a hearing officer to conduct the hearing. The Superintendent/Hearing Officer shall be authorized to administer oaths and to issue subpoenas in conjunction with the proceeding before him/her. A record of the hearing shall be maintained, but no stenographic transcript shall be required. A tape recording shall be deemed a satisfactory record. The hearing officer shall make findings of fact and recommendations as to the appropriate measure of discipline to the Superintendent. The report of the hearing officer shall be advisory only, and the Superintendent may accept all or any part thereof. An appeal of the decision of the Superintendent may be made to the Board of Education which will make its decision solely upon the record before it. The Board may adopt in whole or in part the decision of the Superintendent.
      For a student who is suspended who is not of compulsory attendance age or otherwise legally entitled to alternative instruction, the Superintendent will consider on a case by case basis, in its complete discretion, whether to offer alternative instruction to that student. Factors such as the student’s academic record, behavior record, and the seriousness of the offense(s) leading to suspension, along with other relevant factors, may be considered by the Superintendent. If alternative instruction is offered, it is incumbent on the student to attend and positively engage in such alternative instruction. Any actions by the student which are a violation of the Student Code of Conduct or otherwise inconsistent with positive participation in alternative instruction may result in the alternative instruction being withdrawn.

      Suspension Procedures for Students with Disabilities

      With the exception of the five (5) day or less suspension, this regulation does not apply to a student who has been identified as having one or more disabilities. All matters of discipline for students who are known to have or who are suspected of having a disability shall immediately be referred to the Manifestation Team. The Manifestation Team shall determine whether the action causing the suspension is related to the disability(ies). If the determination is that the cause of the suspension is related to the disability(ies), the case will be immediately referred to the CSE for review and modification of such student’s Individualized Education Program (IEP) if appropriate.
      The requirement to conduct a manifestation determination occurs only when school officials seek to impose a suspension or removal that constitutes a disciplinary change of placement. A change in placement is a suspension or removal of a student with a disability from his or her educational placement for more than ten consecutive days; or a suspension or removal for a period of ten consecutive days or less if the student is subjected to a series of suspensions or removals that constitute a pattern because they add up to more than ten school days in the school year. Conversely, the CSE is not required to conduct a manifestation determination for suspensions or removals of ten days or less in the school year, or for subsequent short-term suspensions or removals (less than ten cumulative days), that do not constitute a pattern of removal.

      The CSE must convene a meeting to make a manifestation determination whenever:

      • school officials impose a suspension or removal that constitutes a disciplinary change of placement;
      • the Superintendent of Schools decides to place a student in an interim alternative educational setting (IAES) for behavior involving weapons, illegal drugs or controlled substances; or
      • an impartial hearing officer decides to place a student in an IAES when it has been determined that continuing the student’s placement is substantially likely to result in injury to the student or to others.

      If the behavior of a student endangers the health and safety of himself/herself or others, the Superintendent will seek parental consent or, if appropriate, a court order for immediate alternative placement of the student.

      Publication

      A synopsis of the process and procedures associated with student suspensions will be included in student handbooks which are distributed annually.

      Reviewed March 28, 2000
      Reviewed December 13, 2011
      Revised and Reviewed March 6, 2018

      5314 Corporal Punishment Complaints

      The Board of Education asserts that corporal punishment is not a desirable method of enforcing decorum, order or discipline. The Board expressly prohibits the use of corporal punishment by district employees.

      1. No teacher, administrator, officer, employee or agent in the district shall use corporal punishment against a student.
      2. As used in this section, corporal punishment is defined as the use of physical force for the purpose of punishing a student, except as otherwise provided in subdivision 3.
      3. Nothing contained in this section shall be construed to prohibit the use of reasonable physical force for the following purposes:
      a. to protect oneself from physical injury;
      b. to protect another student or teacher or any other person from physical injury;
      c. to protect district property or the property of others;
      d. to restrain or remove a student whose behavior is interfering with the orderly exercise and performance of district functions, powers or duties, if that student has refused to comply with a request to refrain from further disruptive acts.

      The above exceptions are permissible, provided that alternative procedures and methods not involving the use of physical force cannot reasonably be employed to achieve the same purposes.

      Investigation of Complaints

      Any complaint about the use of corporal punishment shall be submitted in writing to the Superintendent of Schools. This written complaint will be forwarded to the School Attorney within seven days. The Superintendent shall investigate the complaint to determine whether an incident actually took place, and if so, to determine the identity of the person or persons who administered the punishment, the identity of the student or students punished, reasons for the action and any other relevant facts or circumstances. Results of this investigation will be forwarded to the School Attorney upon completion of the investigation.

      Reports to Commissioner of Education

      Reports shall be submitted to the Commissioner of Education on or before January 15th and July 15th of each year concerning complaints about the use of corporal punishment during the six-month reporting period. Such reports shall set forth the substance of each complaint, the results of the investigation and the action, if any, by the district.

      Adopted December 21, 1999
      Reviewed June 22, 2010
      Revised, Adopted June 17, 2014

      5320 Student Conduct on District Provided Transportation

      In order to ensure the safety of our students and provide the fewest distractions to drivers, the Board of Education believes it is crucial for students to behave appropriately while participating in transportation for school sponsored activities.
      Some students are eligible for district transportation. While the law requires the district to furnish transportation for such students, it does not relieve parent(s) or guardian(s) of the responsibility for supervision until such time as the child boards the bus in the morning and after the child leaves the bus at the end of the school day. Only after a child boards the bus does
      he/she become the responsibility of the district. Such responsibility shall end when the child is delivered to the regular bus stop at the close of the school day.
      Since the school bus may be regarded as an extension of the classroom, children are required to conduct themselves on the bus in a manner consistent with established standards for classroom behavior. Prohibited conduct is defined in Policy 5312-Prohibited Conduct. Students waiting for buses shall conduct themselves properly with respect to the rights and property of others.
      If a child does not conduct himself/herself properly on a bus, there is the expectation that such instances will be brought to the attention of the building principal by any member of the school community.
      Children who become a serious disciplinary problem may have their riding privileges suspended by the building principal for up to five (5) days. For periods in excess of five (5) days, students may be suspended by the Superintendent following a Superintendent’s hearing. In such cases, the parent(s) or guardian(s) of the children involved become responsible for seeing that their children get to and from school safely. Should the suspension from transportation amount to a suspension from attendance, the school district will make appropriate arrangements to provide for the student’s education. Any such suspension shall be in accordance with the provisions of the Education Law.

      Adopted April 11, 2000
      Revised June 22, 2010
      Reviewed, Adopted June 17, 2014

      5405 Wellness Policy

      Given the documented connection between proper nutrition, adequate physical activity and educational success, the Board of Education adopts the following goals and authorizes the following actions to provide district students with a school environment that promotes student health and wellness and reduces childhood obesity.
      For purposes of this policy, “school campus” means all areas of district property accessible to students during the school day; “school day” means the period from the midnight before to 30 minutes after the end of the official school day; and “competitive food” means all food and beverages other than meals reimbursed under federal food programs available for sale to students on the school campus during the school day.

      I. Foods and Beverages Available to Students on School Campus During the School Day

      The Board recognizes that a nutritious, well-balanced, reasonably-portioned diet is essential for student wellness. To help students possess the knowledge and skills necessary to make nutritious food choices for a lifetime, the district shall ensure that all foods and beverages available in school promote good nutrition, balance, and reasonable portion sizes. The district shall ensure that all foods and beverages available for sale to students on the school campus during the school day meet or exceed the program requirements and nutrition standards found in federal regulations.
      To accomplish this, the Board directs that the district serve healthy and appealing foods and beverages at district schools, following state and federal nutrition guidelines, as well as safe food preparation methods.

      A. School Meals – the district shall:

      1. Include fruits, vegetables, salads, whole grains, and low fat items at least to the extent required by federal regulations.
      2. Encourage students to try new or unfamiliar items.
      3. Make efforts to ensure that families are aware of need-based programs for free or reduced-price meals and encourage eligible families to apply.
      4. Consider serving produce and food from local farms and suppliers.
      5. Make free drinking water available at locations where meals are served.

      B. Meal Scheduling – the district shall:

      1. Provide adequate time to eat.
      2. Schedule lunchtime between normal lunch hours (10:40 a.m. – 1 p.m.)
      3. No clubs, tutoring, or organizational meetings will be scheduled at lunchtime, unless students may eat during such activities.
      4. Provide access to hand washing before students eat meals or snacks will be provided.
      5. Provide access to drinking water will be available.

      C. Foods and Beverages Sold Individually (e.g., a la carte, vending machines, school stores) – the district shall:

      1. Ensure that all such items meet the nutrition standards set in federal regulations for competitive foods regarding whole grains, fruits, vegetables, calories, fat, saturated fats, trans fats, sugar, sodium, and caffeine.
      2. Permit the sale of fresh, frozen or canned fruits and vegetables, if processed pursuant to federal regulations, as exempt from the nutrition standards.
      3. Work with existing vendors or locate new vendors that will comply with nutrition standards.

      D. Fund-Raising Activities – the district shall:

      1. Ensure that all fundraisers selling food or beverages to students on school campus during the school day meet the competitive foods nutrition standards set in federal regulations for whole grains, fruits, vegetables, calories, fat, saturated fats, trans fats, sugar, sodium, and caffeine.
      2. Promote non-food items to sell, or activities (physical or otherwise) in which to participate.
      3. Student groups conducting fundraisers which take place off the school campus or outside the school day must obey this policy.
      4. Outside organizations (e.g., Parent groups, booster clubs) conducting fundraisers which take place off the school campus or outside the school day are encouraged to follow this policy.

      E. School and Class Parties, Celebrations, and Events where food and beverages are provided, but not sold – the district shall:

      1. This section applies to all school and classroom parties, snacks which have been brought in for the class or school, celebrations, food provided to learn about cultures or countries, and other events where food is provided but not sold.
      2. Schools shall set guidelines for the frequency and content of classroom and school-wide celebrations where food and beverages are provided .
      3. The district shall promote the use of food and beverage items which meet the standards for competitive foods and beverages, promote non-food activities, and discourage foods and beverages which do not meet those standards, at celebrations.
      4. Model the healthy use of food as a natural part of celebrations.

      F. Marketing of Foods and Beverages

      1. Any food or beverage that is marketed on school grounds during the school day must meet at least the federal nutrition standards for competitive items.
      2. This restriction applies to all school buildings (interior and exterior), school grounds, school buses and other vehicles used to transport students, athletic fields, structures, parking lots, school publications, and items such as vending machines, equipment, posters, garbage cans, or cups.
      3. Marketing includes all advertising and promotions: verbal, written, or graphic, or promotional items.
      4. This restriction does not apply to personal opinions or expression, or items used for educational purposes.
      5. This restriction applies to all purchases and contracts made after the effective date of this provision.

      II. Physical Activity

      Physical activity is an important factor in staying healthy and being ready to learn. The Board encourages every student to develop the knowledge and skills necessary to perform a variety of physical activities, to regularly participate in physical activity, and to appreciate and enjoy physical activity as an ongoing part of a healthy lifestyle. In addition, staff, families, and community are encouraged to participate in and model physical activity as a valuable part of daily life. The district’s Physical Education program shall adhere to the curricular requirements of the Commissioner of Education and the New York State Learning Standards.

      A. Physical Education

      1. Students shall engage in physical education for at least the minimum number of hours or days per week under State requirements.
      2. Physical Education classes shall incorporate the appropriate NYS Learning Standards.
      3. Promote, teach and provide opportunities to practice activities that students enjoy and can pursue throughout their lives (e.g., yoga, fitness walking, step aerobics).
      4. The performance or withholding of physical activity shall not be used as a form of discipline or punishment.

      B. Recess

      1. Maintain daily allotment of recess time for elementary school.
      2. Recess shall not used for punishment or reward.
      3. Permit scheduling recess before lunch.
      4. Recess will be held outdoors whenever possible, and indoors during the most inclement weather, at the discretion of the Building Principal.

      C. Physical Activity in the Classroom

      1. Promote the integration of physical activity in the classroom, both as activity breaks and as part of the educational process (e.g., kinesthetic learning).
      2. If the district is under severe time or space constraints, consider meeting the state requirements for Physical Education through collaborative and integrative in-classroom activity, under the supervision of a Physical Education teacher.

      D. Extracurricular Opportunities for Physical Activity

      1. Promote clubs and activities that meet the various physical activity needs, interests, and abilities of all students (e.g., walking, hiking and climbing, snowshoeing), including before and after school activities.
      2. Promote students walking/biking to school (with proper storage of bicycles), safe routes to school, and “walking” school buses.
      3. The setting of extracurricular activity eligibility participation requirements does not constitute withholding opportunities.

      III. Nutrition Promotion and Education

      The Board believes that nutrition promotion and education is a key component in Introducing and reinforcing healthy behaviors in students. Nutrition promotion and education that teaches the knowledge, skills, and values needed to adopt healthy eating behaviors shall be integrated into the curriculum. Nutrition promotion and education information shall be offered throughout the school campus including, but not limited to, school dining areas and classrooms. Staff members who provide nutrition promotion and education shall be appropriately certified and trained. The district’s broader Health Education program shall incorporate the appropriate New York State Learning Standards.

      The Board’s goals for nutrition promotion and education include that the district will:

      1. Include nutrition education as part of not only health education classes, but also classroom instruction in subjects such as math, science, language arts, social sciences and elective subjects.
      2. Include enjoyable, developmentally appropriate, culturally relevant, participatory activities, such as contests, promotions, taste testing, farm visits, and school gardens.
      3. Promote fruits, vegetables, whole grain products, low fat dairy products, safe and healthy food preparation methods, and health enhancing nutrition practices.
      4. Emphasize caloric balance between food intake and energy expenditure.
      5. Teach media literacy with an emphasis on food marketing.

      IV. Other School-Based Activities

      The district may implement other appropriate programs that help create a school environment that conveys consistent wellness messages and is conducive to healthy eating and physical activity. Such activities may include, but are not limited to, health forums or fairs, health newsletters, parent outreach, employee health and wellness activities, limiting the use of food as a reward, reviewing food marketing and advertising in school, hosting or promoting community-wide events, and offering wellness-related courses in the district’s adult education program.

      V. Implementation

      The Board shall designate the principal a District Wellness Coordinator to be responsible for ensuring that the provisions of this policy are carried out throughout the district. The Board may also designate one person in each building as School Wellness Coordinator to ensure that the wellness activities and actions are being implemented at the building level.

      VI. Monitoring and Review

      The principal, District Wellness Coordinator, shall report every three years to the Board and the public on the implementation and effectiveness of this policy. Every three years, the District Wellness Coordinator, in consultation with appropriate personnel and advisory committees, shall monitor and review the district’s wellness activities to determine the extent that district schools are complying with this policy, how this policy compares to model wellness policies, and the progress made toward attaining the goals of this policy and whether this policy is having a positive effect on increasing student wellness and decreasing childhood obesity in the district. Based on those results, this policy, and the specific objectives set to meet its goals, may be revised as needed.
      Parents, students, food service professionals, physical education teachers, school health professionals, school administrators, the general public, and the school board shall be provided with the opportunity to participate in the development, implementation and periodic review and update of this wellness policy. To do this, the district establish an advisory committee, and invite participation via notices in school publications; staff and student announcements, handbooks and memos; the district website; and outreach to school-associated organizations interested persons and those with valuable expertise].
      The district shall inform and update the public (including parents, students and others in the community) about the content and implementation of this wellness policy by posting this policy (and any updates) on the district website and in each school lunch area, referencing the policy and its availability on school publications and notices, and providing information about new and ongoing wellness policy activities to parents, staff and students via established communication channels].
      The district shall monitor and review the implementation and effectiveness of this policy by conducting:

      1. Periodic informal surveys of Building Principals, classroom staff, and school health personnel to assess the progress of wellness activities and their effects.
      2. Periodic checks of the nutritional content of food offered in the cafeterias for meals and a la carte items, and sales or consumption figures for such foods.
      3. Periodic checks of the nutritional content of food available in vending machines, and sales or consumption figures for such foods.
      4. Periodic checks of the amount of time students spend in Physical Education classes, and the nature of those activities.
      5. Periodic checks of extracurricular activities of a physical nature, in the number of offerings and rates of participation by students.
      6. Periodic checks of student mastery of the nutrition education curriculum.
      7. Periodic completion of relevant portions of the CDC School Health Index.
      8. Periodic review of data currently collected by the district, including:
      a. attendance data, particularly absences due to illness;
      b. test scores;
      c. rates of suspension, discipline, and violent incidents;
      c. physical education scores on flexibility, endurance, and strength (i.e., fitness test results);
      d. student BMI (Body Mass Index) statistics, as collected in accordance with the State Department of Health efforts; and
      e. revenues generated from vending machines and a la carte food items.
      9. Periodic surveys of student/parent opinions of cafeteria offerings and wellness efforts.
      10. Periodic review of professional staff development offered which focuses on student wellness.
      11. NYSSBA’s Student Wellness Assessment Checklist [every three years] to review the effectiveness of this policy.

      VII. Recordkeeping

      The district shall keep records as required by federal regulations, including documentation of the following: this policy; the district’s community involvement activities described above; that the policy is made available to the public; the assessments done every three years; how the public is informed of the assessment results; and when and how the policy is reviewed and updated.

      Replaced, Adopted December 5, 2017

      5420 Student Health Services

      The Board of Education recognizes that good student health is vital to successful learning and acknowledges its responsibility, along with that of parent(s) or guardian(s), to protect and foster a safe and healthful environment for the students.
      The school shall work closely with students’ families to provide detection and preventive health services. The school will provide vision, hearing, and scoliosis screening. Results shall be referred to the parent(s) or guardian(s) who shall be encouraged to have their family physician provide appropriate care.
      In order to enroll in school a student must have a health exam and submit a health certificate within 30 calendar days after entering school, and upon entering prekindergarten or kindergarten, and first, third, fifth, seventh, ninth and eleventh grades. The examination, which must conform to state requirements, must have been conducted no more than 12 months before the first day of the school year in question. If a student is unable to furnish the health certificate, the school will provide a physical examination by a licensed provider. A request for exemption from the physical examination, or the requirement to provide a health certificate, must be made in writing to the school principal or designee, who may require documents supporting the request. The only basis for exemption is a claim that the physical examination is in conflict with the parent or guardian’s genuine and sincere religious belief.
      In order to enroll in school, students must also furnish documentation of required immunizations against certain communicable diseases, as set forth in state law and regulations, unless exempted from immunizations for medical or religious reasons as permitted by state law and regulation.
      Homeless students shall be admitted to school even if they do not have the required health or immunization records, but may be temporarily excluded if they show actual symptoms of a communicable disease that poses a significant risk of transmission to others (see “Communicable Diseases” below).
      The McKinney-Vento liaison shall assist homeless students covered by that law in accessing health services described in this policy and accompanying regulation.
      The Board recognizes that the State of New York may authorize and require the collection of data from health certificates in furtherance of tracking and understanding health care issues that affect children. The Board supports these efforts and expects administrators to cooperate and to observe the appropriate laws and regulations in carrying out those responsibilities, including those that relate to student privacy.
      In addition, students will be asked to provide a dental health certificate when they enroll in school and in accordance with the same schedule as the health certificate.

      A permanent student health record shall be part of a student’s cumulative school record and should follow the student from grade to grade and school to school along with his/her academic record. This record folder shall be maintained by the school nurse.

      Emergency Care

      Each school in the district will include in its emergency plan a protocol for responding to health care emergencies, including anaphylaxis, and head injury. Parents/guardians will be notified of any emergency medical situation as soon as is practicable. Parents/guardians will receive notification of non-emergent medical situations that have been reported to the nurse in a timely manner.
      Schools shall also provide emergency care for students in accidental or unexpected medical situations. The district will stock epinephrine auto-injectors for non-patient specific use. The district shall ensure that designated staff are properly trained.
      The district permits emergency administration of opioid antagonists, such as naloxone, by trained volunteer responders and/or the school nurse to prevent opioid overdose.

      Communicable Diseases

      It is the responsibility of the Board to provide all students with a safe and healthy school environment. To meet this responsibility, it is sometimes necessary to exclude students with contagious and infectious diseases, as defined in the Public Health Law, from attendance in school. Students will be excluded during periods of contagion for time periods indicated on a chart developed by the school nurse.
      During an outbreak of these communicable diseases, if the Commissioner of Health or his/her designee so orders, the district will exclude students from school who have an exemption from immunization or who are in the process of obtaining immunization.
      The Superintendent of Schools is responsible for working through district health personnel, for enforcing this policy and to contact the county or local health department when a reportable case of a communicable disease is identified in the student or staff population.

      Administering Medication to Students

      Neither the Board nor district staff members shall be responsible for the diagnosis or treatment of student illness. The administration of prescribed medication to a student during school hours shall be permitted only when failure to take such medicine would jeopardize the health of the student, or the student would not be able to attend school if the medicine were not made available to him/her during school hours, or where it is done pursuant to law requiring accommodation to a student’s special medical needs (e.g., Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973). “Medication” will include all medicines prescribed by an authorized medical provider.
      Before any medication may be administered to or by any student during school hours, the Board requires:

      1. the written request of the parent(s) or guardian(s), which shall give permission for such administration and relieve the Board and its employees of liability for administration of medication;
      2. the written order of the prescribing authorized medical provider, which will include the purpose of the medication, the dosage, the time at which or the special circumstances under which medication shall be administered, the period for which medication is prescribed, and the possible side effects of the medication; and
      3. that in order for a student to carry and use a rescue inhaler, an epinephrine auto-injector, insulin, or glucagon and associated testing supplies, written permission must be provided both by the parent and the prescribing authorized medical provider in accordance with state law and regulation.

      Students are allowed to carry and apply parentally provided sunscreen without a prescription from a medical provider, assuming that the sunscreen is FDA approved and that the sunscreen is not treating a medical condition. Parents need to provide the district with written permission for students to use sunscreen.

      Permission slips and medical orders shall be kept on file in the office of the school nurse.

      Life-Threatening Allergies and Anaphylaxis Management

      The Board recognizes its role and responsibility in supporting a healthy learning environment for all students, including those who have, or develop, life-threatening allergies. The district will work cooperatively with the student, their parent/guardian and healthcare provider to allow the child to participate as fully and as safely as possible in school activities. When a student has a known life-threatening allergy reported on their health form or if the district has been informed by the parent of the presence of a life-threatening allergy, the district will assemble a team, which may include the parent, the school nurse, the child’s teacher, the building principal and other appropriate personnel, which will be charged with developing an individual health care plan and/or an emergency action plan. The plan(s) will be maintained by the school nurse. The plan(s) will guide prevention and response. If the student is eligible for accommodations based upon the IDEA, Section 504 or the Americans with Disabilities Act, the appropriate procedures will be followed regarding identification, evaluation and implementation of accommodations.

      Training

      Training to support the fulfillment of staff responsibilities in regard to student health services will be provided as part of the district’s ongoing professional development plan and in conformity with Commissioner’s regulations.

      Regulations

      The Superintendent shall develop comprehensive regulations governing student health services. Those regulations shall include the provision of all health services required by law, procedures for the maintenance of health records, and procedures for the administering of medication to students. The Superintendent shall also develop protocols, in consultation with the district medical director and other appropriate district staff, for the management of injury, with particular attention to concussion.

      Replaced, Adopted: July 5, 2018

      5420-R Student Health Services Regulations

      This regulation provides specific details about major areas of the district’s student health services, such as immunization, medications, medical exams, medical care, emergency records, and return to school after injury/illness. For purposes of this regulation, the McKinney-Vento liaison shall assist homeless students covered by that law in accessing school health services.

      A. Immunization Against Communicable Diseases

      Under state Public Health Law 2164, in order to be enrolled in or attend district schools, children must be fully immunized against certain communicable diseases. Those diseases are: poliomyelitis, mumps, measles, diphtheria, rubella, varicella (chicken pox), hepatitis B, pertussis, tetanus, and, where applicable, Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib), and meningococcal disease.
      “Fully immunized” means that the child has either (1) received the required vaccinations for these diseases as set forth in state regulations; (2) for measles, mumps, rubella, hepatitis B, poliomyelitis, or varicella only, shown immunity with a positive blood test for those disease antibodies; or (3) for varicella only, has had the disease, verified by a physician, nurse practitioner, or physician’s assistant.
      Children who are not fully immunized may only be admitted to school if they (1) are in the process of receiving immunization or obtaining blood tests; or (2) have been granted a medical or religious exemption.
      Medical exemptions may be issued if immunization is detrimental to a child’s health. Medical exemptions must either be (1) the medical exemption form issued by the New York State Department of Health or the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, or (2) a statement signed by a physician licensed to practice medicine in New York State indicating the specific immunization, the medical contraindication, and the length of time the exemption is for. Medical exemptions must be reissued annually to remain valid. The Building Principal may require supporting documents for medical exemptions.
      Religious exemptions may be granted by the district upon either (1) a signed and completed Request for Religious Exemption to Immunization created by the NYSED, or (2) a written and signed statement from a parent/guardian stating an objection to immunization because of genuine and sincere religious beliefs which prohibit immunization. The Building Principal may require supporting documents for religious exemptions.
      All students must present appropriate documentation of their immunization status, as set forth in the Regulations of the Commissioner of Health 10 NYCRR Subpart 66-1. Homeless students shall be admitted to school even if they do not have the required immunization records, but may be temporarily excluded if they show actual symptoms of a communicable disease that poses a significant risk of transmission to others.
      The Building Principal may permit students without adequate documentation to attend school up to 14 calendar days while the parent/guardian furnishes the necessary documents. This time period may be extended to 30 days for students transferring from another state or country, as long as they show a good faith effort to obtain the necessary documentation.
      District schools may access the New York State Immunization Information System (NYSIIS) or the New York City Citywide Immunization Registry (CIR) to verify the immunization history of students entering or registered in that school.
      When a child is excluded from school for immunization reasons, the Building Principal shall notify the parent/guardian of their responsibility to have the child immunized, and the public resources available for doing so. The Principal shall also notify the local health authority of the child’s name and address and the immunization(s) the child lacks, and shall cooperate with that authority to provide a time and place for the required immunization(s) to be administered.
      The district will maintain a list of all students who have been exempted from immunization for medical or religious reasons, or who are in the process of receiving immunization, and shall exclude such students from school when so ordered by the Commissioner of Health, in the event of an outbreak in school of the vaccine-preventable diseases listed in Public Health Law 2164 and the first paragraph of this section.
      When a student transfers out of the district, the parent/guardian will be provided with an immunization transfer record showing the student’s current immunization status which will be signed by the school nursing personnel or the school physician. A transcript or photocopy of the immunization portion of the cumulative health record will be provided to the new educational institution upon request.

      B. Administering Medication to Students in School

      The administration of prescribed medication to a student during school hours is permitted only when the medication is necessary to allow the student to attend school or failure to administer the medication would seriously affect the student’s health.

      Parent(s) or guardian(s) must present the following information:

      1. a written order from a NYS licensed health care provider (e.g. physician, nurse practitioner or physician assistant) containing the following: student’s name, the date and name of the medicine, dosage and time to be administered, and list of possible side effects; and

      2. A written note from the parent/guardian giving appropriate licensed school personnel permission to administer the medication to their child during school or for trained unlicensed personnel to assist their child in taking their own medication.

      Students who may carry and use certain medications

      Students are permitted to self-administer medication under certain circumstances, in accordance with state law and regulation. A student is authorized to carry and use the following medications: rescue inhaler, epinephrine auto-injector, insulin, glucagon (and associated diabetes testing supplies), if the following conditions are met:

      1. An authorized medical provider must provide written permission that includes an attestation that the student’s diagnosis requires the medication; the student has demonstrated that he/she can self-administer the prescribed medication effectively; the name of the medication, the dose, the times when it is to be taken, the circumstances which may warrant use and the length of time during which the student may use it.

      2. Written parental permission.

      If a student is authorized to carry and use medication as described above, the parent/guardian is permitted to give extra medication and supplies that the district will maintain in accordance with the written directions submitted by the authorized medical provider. Such extra medication and supplies shall be readily accessible to the student.

      All documents pertaining to student medication will be kept on file in the nurse’s office.

      The school nurse shall develop procedures for the administration of medication, which require that:

      1. all medications will be administered by a licensed person unless the child is a “supervised student” (able to self-administer with assistance and supervision) or an “independent student” (able to self-administer and self-carry);
      2. medications, other than as noted above, shall be securely stored in the office and kept in their original labeled container, which specifies the type of medication, the amount to be given and the times of administration;
      3. the school nurse shall maintain a record of the name of the student to whom medication may be administered, the prescribing physician, the dosage and timing of medication, and a notation of each instance of administration; and
      4. all medications shall be brought to school by the parent(s) or guardian(s) and shall be picked up by the parent(s) or guardian(s) at the end of the school year or the end of the period of medication, whichever is earlier. If not picked up within five days of the period of medication, the medication shall be discarded.

      An adult must bring the medication to school in the original container. The administering staff member should clearly label the medication with the time to be given and dosage.

      Sunscreen

      Students are permitted to carry and apply sunscreen without a medical provider’s order under the following conditions:

      1. the sunscreen is used to avoid overexposure to the sun and not for medical treatment of an injury or illness, if sunscreen is required to treat a medical condition, the procedures for administering medication (above) apply;
      2. the sunscreen is FDA approved for over the counter use;
      3. the student’s parents or guardians provide written permission annually for the student to carry and use the sunscreen.

      The school nurse will keep written permission for students on file and develop procedures pertaining to this policy.

      Administering medication on field trips and at after-school activities

      Taking medication on field trips and at after-school activities is permitted if a student is an “independent student” described above in administering their own medication. On field trips or at other after-school activities, teachers or other school staff may carry the medication (if the student does not need it on hand for rapid administration) so that the independent student can take it at the proper time. If a student is a “supervised student” described above, unlicensed school personnel who have been trained by a licensed school health professional may assist the student in taking his/her medication. The student’s parent/guardian, if attending the trip, may also perform these activities, but may not be required to do so.
      If a student is “nurse dependent” (i.e., requires a licensed health professional to administer their medication), then the student must have their medication administered by a licensed health professional, or the district may:

      • permit the parent or guardian to attend the activity and administer the medication.
      • permit the parent to personally request another adult friend or family member to voluntarily administer the medication on the field trip or activity and inform the school district in writing of such request.
      • allow the student’s health care provider to be consulted and, if he/she permits, order the medication time to be adjusted or the dose eliminated.

      If no other alternative can be found, the trip will be canceled or rescheduled.

      Administering epi-pen in emergency situations

      The administration of epinephrine by epi-pen has become an accepted and extremely beneficial practice in protecting individuals subject to serious allergic reactions (e.g., individual has an anaphylactic reaction to a wasp sting or the ingestion of peanut butter).
      Pursuant to Commissioner’s regulations, registered professional nurses may carry and administer agents used in non-patient specific emergency treatment of anaphylaxis.
      Additionally, the district will stock epinephrine auto-injectors to be used on any student or staff member having symptoms of anaphylaxis, whether or not there is a previous history of severe allergic reaction. The medical director shall oversee use of the auto-injectors, ensuring that designated staff are appropriately trained. However, any school personnel may be directed in a specific instance to use an auto-injector by the nurse or medical director.
      In addition, pursuant to SED guidelines, school nurses may provide training to unlicensed school staff in administering epi-pens, epinephrine auto-injectors and glucagon prescribed by a licensed medical provider, to a child who has been diagnosed with the associated disease in accordance with the process described in this policy and regulation.

      C. Student Medical Exams

      In accordance with Sections 903 and 904 of the state Education Law, each student shall have a physical exam given by the school doctor or licensed health provider (including a physician, physician assistant or nurse practitioner) upon entrance to school and upon entering pre-kindergarten or kindergarten, and first, third, fifth, seventh, ninth, and eleventh grades. Findings are to be kept on record at the school on forms that can be obtained from the school nurse. In addition, the school will request a dental health certificate according to the same schedule.
      A student may be excluded from the medical examination requirements because the child’s parent/guardian holds a genuine and sincere religious belief which is contrary to medical examinations. The request for exemption must be in writing to the principal or his/her designee.
      In the event that the student’s medical history reveals that they have a known life-threatening allergy, the school nurse, in conjunction with the family, student, child’s teacher, and other appropriate staff, will develop and implement an individual health care plan which will guide prevention and response.

      The district will work with students in the self-management of their life-threatening allergy, or other chronic health conditions, by:

      1. Adequately training staff involved in the care of the child.
      2. Assuring the availability of the necessary equipment and/or medications.
      3. Providing appropriately licensed and trained persons on school premises, as required by law.
      4. Providing ongoing staff and student education.

      D. Illness or Injury in School

      If a student becomes ill or injured in school:

      1. The nurse will determine if the student should receive further medical attention, remain in the dispensary or return to class.
      2. The nurse will call the parent, guardian or designated emergency contact if he/she feels the student should go home. In general, a parent or guardian will pick up the student from school.
      3. The nurse will contact the Building Principal if he/she feels the child should be transported by bus to the home.
      4. If there is to be a change in bus routing in order to carry the student to his/her home, that decision will be made by the administrator and the transportation supervisor.
      5. If the route is to be changed, the transportation supervisor shall inform the bus driver.
      6. If no parent, guardian or designated emergency contact picks up the student at school, or if no parent/guardian or designated emergency contact will be home, the student will remain in the nurse’s office until such time as a parent, guardian or designated emergency contact becomes available to assume responsibility for the child.
      7. If the nurse determines that the child can return to class, but needed some type of medical attention (i.e., a bandage for a minor scratch, a brief rest, etc.), the nurse will notify the parent using district form 5420-E.1.
      8. The nurse will maintain appropriate records of all student visits.

      The district permits the administration of opioid antagonists, such as naloxone, to prevent opioid overdose, pursuant to policy 8121.1, Opioid Overdose Prevention. District staff shall follow all regulations regarding the storage, accessibility, administration, recordkeeping, and reporting of naloxone use.

      E. Medical Emergency Record

      All students shall have on file a medical emergency record which shall state the name and telephone numbers of the following:

      1. the student’s parent(s) or guardian(s) at home and work;
      2. the student’s next of kin;
      3. the student’s licensed health care provider;
      4. any allergies or serious health conditions.

      Students diagnosed with diabetes shall have a written diabetes management plan maintained as part of the student’s cumulative health record. The management plan shall be developed in accordance with state regulation and district procedures. Students diagnosed with asthma or other respiratory disease requiring a rescue inhaler, students diagnosed with life-threatening allergy or diabetes may have an emergency action plan maintained as part of the student’s cumulative medical record. The emergency action plan will be developed in accordance with state regulation and district procedures.

      F. Student Return to School after Illness/Injury

      In general, students should be symptom-free before returning to school and resuming normal activities. In some instances, students may be asked to provide a note from their licensed health care provider before they return to school or participate in the full range of school activities. The final decision to permit participation rests with the school physician. The Superintendent, in consultation with the school physician, nurse and other appropriate staff, will develop protocols to address a student’s return to activities when there has been a serious illness or injury.

      Replaced, Adopted: July 5, 2018

      5440 Drug and Alcohol Abuse Policy

      The Board of Education is committed to the prevention of alcohol and other substance use/abuse. This policy describes the philosophy of the district and the program elements the district will use to promote healthy life styles for its students and to inhibit the use/abuse of alcohol and other substances.
      No student may use, possess, sell, offer, manufacture, or distribute alcohol or other substances, nor may use or possess drug paraphernalia, on school grounds or at school-sponsored events, except drugs as prescribed by a physician. The term “alcohol and/or other substances” shall be construed throughout this policy to refer to the use of all substances including, but not limited to, alcohol, inhalants, marijuana, cocaine, LSD, PCP, amphetamines, heroin, steroids, look-alike drugs, and any synthetic version thereof (whether or not specifically illegal or labeled for human consumption), commonly referred to as “designer drugs.” Designer drugs are those substances which have been designed and synthesized to mimic the intended effects and usages of, and which are chemically substantially similar to, substances controlled by federal and/or state law as exemplified above. The inappropriate use of prescription and over-the-counter drugs shall also be prohibited.
      Additionally, the following persons shall be prohibited from entering school grounds or school-sponsored events: any person exhibiting behavior, conduct, or personal or physical characteristics indicative of having used or consumed alcohol and/or other substances, or any person who school personnel have reasonable grounds to suspect has used alcohol and/or other substances.
      In order to educate students on the dangers associated with substance abuse, the health education curriculum shall include instruction concerning drug abuse for grades 5-12.
      Any staff member observing narcotics possession or usage by students shall report the incident immediately to the Superintendent of Schools or his/her designee. The Superintendent or his/her designee shall then seek immediate action. Any narcotics found shall be confiscated immediately, followed by notification of the parent(s)/guardian(s) of the student(s) involved and the appropriate disciplinary action taken, up to and including permanent suspension and referral for prosecution. In its effort to maintain a drug-free environment, the district shall cooperate to the fullest extent possible with local, state and/or federal law enforcement agencies.
      The district will use the following principles as guides for the development of its substance use/abuse prevention efforts and for any disciplinary measures related to alcohol and other substances:

      • Alcohol and other substance use/abuse is preventable and treatable.
      • Alcohol and other substance use/abuse inhibits the district from carrying out its central mission of educating students.
      • The behavior of the Board, the administration, and all school staff should model the behavior asked of students.
      • While the district can and must assume a leadership role in alcohol and other substance use/abuse prevention, this goal will be accomplished only through coordinated, collaborative efforts with parents, students, staff, and the community as a whole.

      Adopted November 7, 2012

      5450.1 Notification of Releases of Level Three Sex Offenders

      The Board of Education recognizes its responsibility to ensure the safety and well-being of its students with respect to the notification of parents and staff regarding the release from prison of sex offenders who then choose to reside within school district boundaries. The Board of Education acknowledges the efforts of the New York State Division of Parole, the Division of Criminal Justice Services (DCJS) and local law enforcement agencies to inform the district when persons with a history of sex offenses against children are being paroled into the community. The purpose of such notification is to enlist the assistance of district personnel in identifying such persons so that the Division and local law enforcement personnel may act to prevent any new criminal activity. The district shall cooperate with the police and parole agencies in this endeavor.
      The Board directs the Superintendent of Schools to ensure the dissemination of any identifying information provided by the Division of Parole and local law enforcement agencies regarding level 3 sex offenders only to parents and employees. The list of employees receiving the information will include teachers, administrators, supervisors, bus drivers, monitors, security personnel, teaching assistants, office staff, coaches, etc. Staff members shall notify their supervisor or the principal immediately if they observe any suspicious person(s) in an area where children congregate. In turn, the supervisor or administrator shall be directed to contact law enforcement agencies, if a paroled sex offender is so observed.
      The Superintendent of Schools shall notify parents of students about the release of level 3 sex offender information and remind them of the security measures and personal safety instruction provided at school.
      The Superintendent shall establish any necessary regulations for implementing this policy with the advice of the school attorney.

      Adopted February 7, 2006
      Adopted November 20, 2012

      5450.1-R Notification of Releases of Level Three Sex Offenders Regulation

      The Board of Education recognizes its responsibility to ensure the safety and well-being of its students with respect to the notification of parents and staff regarding the release from prison of sex offenders who then choose to reside within school district boundaries. In conjunction with New York State’s “Megan’s Law” which requires the annual registration of persons convicted of various sexual offenses where the victim is less than 17 years old, the district will assume a proactive role in the notification process. Megan’s Law permits the disclosure of certain information about any Level 3 sexual offender released from prison who resides in the Guilderland Central School District. A Level 3 sex offender is described as an individual where “the potential to re-offend is high.” Although the individual is not wanted by the police, the purpose of the notification is to keep the school personnel who come in contact with children, parents, and neighbors in our community better informed as a precautionary safety measure.
      If a Level 3 sex offender resides in the Guilderland Central School District, the following steps will be taken:

      a) A memorandum will be sent to all employees including a Sex Offender Information Bulletin listing the name, photograph, criminal act committed, type of victim targeted, descriptive details (age, height, weight, hair and eye color, etc.), and other pertinent information about the convicted offender which is provided to the district by the Guilderland Police Department.
      b) The list of employees receiving the information will include teachers, administrators, supervisors, bus drivers, monitors, security personnel, teaching assistants, office staff, coaches, etc. In order to expedite the process, the information will be transmitted via e-mail with paper copies made available for those without e-mail access.
      c) The Sex Offender Information Bulletin will be posted on the district’s website
      (https://www.guilderlandschools.org) as well as listed on cable channel 16.
      d) For elementary school students, K-5, a letter (see 5450.1-E) from the superintendent or his/her designee with page 2 listing the Sex Offender Information Bulletin will be sent home to parents via backpack mail in a sealed envelope.
      e) For secondary students, grades 6-12, a letter to parents from the superintendent along with the Sex Offender Information Bulletin on page 2 will be distributed to students. A sealed envelope will not be utilized.
      f) If school is not in session at the time (i.e., weekend or a vacation period from September through June) when school officials are contacted by law enforcement agencies, the notification letter will be sent home on the next available school day or as soon as possible thereafter.
      g) If school officials are contacted by law enforcement agencies during July or August when programs are not in session, the school district website and cable channel 16 as well as local newspapers will be used to disseminate information. In addition, a mailing to the parents of K-8 students from the Superintendent of Schools will be generated.

      When school officials receive notification about the presence of a Level 3 sex offender residing in the Guilderland Central School District, a concerted effort will be made to disseminate the information to all employees and parents throughout the school community in order to ensure the safety and well being of all students.

      Reviewed January 24, 2006
      Reviewed November 7, 2012

      5450.1-E Notification of Releases of L 3 Sex Offenders Exhibit

      Dear Parents and Guardians,
      The New York State Division of Parole through local law enforcement agencies has instituted a policy whereby school administrators are notified of paroled sex offenders living or working in our school district. Specifically, we were provided the name and photograph of the level 3 sex offender, the crime the offender was convicted of, a description of the offender’s modus operandi, the type of victim previously targeted and the name, address and telephone number of the offender’s Parole Officer. A copy of Sex Offender Information Bulletin is listed on the reverse side of this letter. In addition, access to this information has been provided to all school employees, made available in all school offices throughout the school district, posted on the district’s website and listed on cable channel 16. Please understand that this individual is not wanted by the police. However, as a result of the Sex Offender Registration Act, the police notification of schools and neighbors in our community is intended to keep the public better informed as a precautionary safety measure.
      Any time we receive this information regarding a level 3 sex offender, it will be circulated to all employees including principals, teachers, teaching assistants, monitors who issue visitors’ passes, bus drivers, custodians, playground monitors, and coaches. Our employees have been directed to notify their building principal or supervisor if they observe any suspicious person(s) in an area where children congregate.
      We are dedicated to the safety of our children while they are in school. All of our schools have strict sign-in/sign-out procedures for our students, and all visitors to our buildings are required to sign-in and show a photo ID. In addition, our school curriculum includes teaching personal safety designed to assist students should they be approached by a stranger. We encourage you to talk to your children about personal safety as well. Books and other resources are available from school counselors, if necessary.
      Specific questions about this matter may be directed to the Guilderland Police Department
      (356-1501 or dial 911 in an emergency).
      Please be assured that the school district will continue to take responsible and appropriate measures to protect our students.
      Sincerely,
      Name of Superintendent of Schools

      Reviewed January 24, 2006
      Reviewed November 7, 2012

      5460 Suspected Child Abuse and Maltreatment

      The Board of Education recognizes that because of their sustained contact with school-aged children, employees are in an excellent position to identify abused, maltreated or neglected children and refer them for treatment and protection. The Board further recognizes the specific dictates of law which require school officials to report suspected instances of child abuse, maltreatment (which includes neglect) in a domestic setting.
      The purpose of mandatory reporting is to identify suspected abused and maltreated children as soon as possible, so that such children determined to be abused or maltreated can be protected from further harm and, where appropriate, can be offered services to assist him or her and his or her family.
      School officials, who have reasonable cause to know or suspect that a child has been subjected to abuse or maltreatment, must immediately report this to the New York State Central Register for Child Abuse and Maltreatment (Central Register), as required by law. No conditions may be imposed which limit their responsibility to report. A school official is defined as:

      • Teacher
      • Guidance counselor
      • Psychologist
      • Nurse
      • Social Worker
      • Full or part-time paid athletic coach
      • Administrator
      • Any school personnel required to hold a teaching or administrative license or certificate.
      • The school official will also report the matter to the Building Principal.

      The report shall be made by telephone or by telephone facsimile machine on a form supplied by the Commissioner of Social Services. A written report shall be made within forty-eight hours to the appropriate local child protective service, and to the statewide Central Register.
      School employees who are not school officials, as defined above, but who have reasonable cause to know or suspect that a child has been subjected to abuse or maltreatment are encouraged to report to the Central Register. However, the school employee must report the matter to the Building Principal. If the matter has not yet been reported to the Central Register, the Building Principal shall make the report, in accordance with state law. In being required to file such report, the Building Principal does not have discretion.

      School employees or officials may not contact the child’s family or any other person to determine the cause of the suspected abuse or maltreatment. It is not the responsibility of the school official or employee to prove that the child has been abused or maltreated.
      Any school official or employee who has cause to suspect that the death of any child is a result of child abuse or maltreatment must report that fact to the appropriate medical examiner or coroner.
      In accordance with the law, any school official who fails to report an instance of suspected child abuse or maltreatment may be guilty of a Class A misdemeanor and may be held liable for the damages caused by the failure to report. The law grants immunity to persons who, in good faith, report instances of child abuse from any liability.
      School employees will not be subject to retaliatory action, as defined in state law, as a result of making a report when they reasonably suspect that a child has been abused or maltreated.
      The Board recognizes that knowingly reporting a false claim of child abuse is a violation of state law and this policy acknowledges that it is a crime to do so. The district will make every reasonable effort to ensure the integrity of the district’s child abuse reporting process and procedure.

      School District Relationship with Local Social Service District

      The school district will cooperate to the extent possible with authorized child protective services workers in investigations of alleged child abuse. The Superintendent, or his or her designee, will represent the district when collaborating with local social service agencies to address instances of abuse or maltreatment, and in the development of policy and procedures regarding abuse or maltreatment (including educational neglect). In addition, the Superintendent will share a copy of the district’s attendance policy, 5100, with the local social service district.
      The school district shall maintain an ongoing training program which will address the identification and reporting of child abuse and maltreatment, including the legal implications of reporting and not reporting. Attendance at sessions of this training program shall be required of all school officials. Attendance records shall be kept, and notations will be made in personnel files as to the dates of attendance.
      The Superintendent shall develop, with input from appropriate personnel, a plan for implementation of such a training program, to be approved by the Board. In addition, the policy and regulations will be included in all employee handbooks and distributed annually to all school officials who are not covered under existing handbooks. The Superintendent will prepare and implement all regulations as are necessary to accomplish the intent of this policy

      Replaced June 19, 2012
      Adopted February 3, 2015

      5460-R Suspected Child Abuse and Maltreatment Regulation

      New York State Law (Child Protective Service Act of 1973, as amended) provides for reporting of suspected cases of child abuse by school officials. These regulations are designed to implement this law within the district and to help protect students from the harmful effects of child abuse.

      Definitions

      The definition of child abuse and maltreatment is established by law.

      Abused Child, according to Social Services Law and the Family Court Act, is a child less than 18 years of age whose parent or other person legally responsible for his or her care:

      a. inflicts or allows to be inflicted upon such child physical injury by other than accidental means which causes or creates a substantial risk of death, or serious or protracted disfigurement, or protracted impairment of physical or emotional health or protracted loss or impairment of the function of any bodily organ; or
      b. creates or allows to be created a substantial risk of physical injury to such a child by other than accidental means which would be likely to cause death or serious or protracted disfigurement, or protracted impairment of physical or emotional health, or protracted loss or impairment of the function of any bodily organ; or
      c. commits, or allows to be committed, a sex offense against such child, as defined in the penal law, provided, however, that the corroboration requirements contained therein shall not apply to proceedings under this article.

      Neglected or maltreated child, according to the Family Court Act, is a child less than 18 years of age:

      a. whose physical, mental, or emotional condition has been impaired or is in danger of becoming impaired as a result of the failure of his or her parents or other person legally responsible for his care to exercise a minimum degree of care:
      (1) in supplying the child with adequate food, clothing, shelter, or education in accordance with provisions of Part One, Article 65 of the Education Law, or medical, dental, optometrical or surgical care though financially able to do so or offered financial or other reasonable means to do so; or

      In order for a report of educational neglect to be accepted, three elements need to be established:

      a. Excessive absence from school by the child
      b. Reasonable cause to suspect that the parent is aware or should have been aware of the excessive absenteeism and the parent has contributed to the problem or is failing to take steps to effectively address the problem, and;
      c. Reasonable cause to suspect educational impairment or harm to the child or imminent danger of such impairment or harm.

      (2) in providing the child with proper supervision or guardianship, by unreasonably inflicting or allowing to be inflicted harm, or a substantial risk thereof, including the infliction of excessive corporal punishment; or by using a drug or drugs; or by using alcoholic beverages to the extent that he/she loses self-control of his/her actions; or by any other acts of a similarly serious nature requiring the aid of the court; or

      b. who has been abandoned by his/her parent(s) or other person legally responsible for his/her care.

      Person legally responsible includes the child’s custodian, guardian, or any other person responsible for the child’s care at the relevant time. Custodian may include any person continually or at regular intervals found in the same household as the child when the conduct of such person causes or contributes to the abuse or neglect of the child.

      Impairment of emotional health and impairment of mental or emotional condition includes a state of substantially diminished psychological or intellectual functioning in relation to, but not limited to, such factors as failure to thrive, control of aggressive or self-destructive impulses, ability to think and reason, or acting out of misbehavior, including incorrigibility, ungovernability, or habitual truancy; provided, however, that such impairment must be clearly attributable to the unwillingness or inability of the parent, guardian, or custodian to exercise a minimum degree of care toward the child.

      Reporting procedures and related information:

      1. All school officials must, when they have reasonable cause to suspect that a child is abused or maltreated, report it to the New York State Central Register for Child Abuse and Maltreatment (800-342 3720). A school official, under state law, is defined as:
      • Teacher
      • Guidance counselor
      • Psychologist
      • Nurse
      • Social Worker
      • Full or Part-time athletic coach
      • Administrator
      • Any school personnel required to hold a teaching or administrative license or certificate.

      Personnel have the right to request that information which would identify the individual making the report be withheld if furnishing such data might prove detrimental to the safety or interest of that individual.

      2. The school official must also report the matter to the Building Principal who will determine if any additional steps need to be taken by the school district (for instance, contacting the school physician, social worker or other support services).
      3. In the event that a school employee, who is not required to report under the law (such as a bus driver, custodian, cafeteria monitor, etc.), has reasonable cause to suspect that a child is abused or neglected, he/she is encouraged to make a report to the Central Register. The employee must, by district policy, report the matter to the Building Principal.
      4. If the Building Principal is informed of a case of suspected child abuse or maltreatment that has not yet been reported to the Central Register, the Building Principal is required to:
      (a) phone the New York State Central Register for Child Abuse and Maltreatment (800-342 3720) and inform them verbally of the problem; or
      (b) contact the above agency by telephone facsimile machine on a form supplied by the Commissioner of Social Services; and
      (c) file a written report with the local child protective services agency and the Central Register within forty-eight hours after the above report; and,
      (d) determine if additional steps need to be taken by the school district, as outlined in step 2 above.
      5. The Building Principal may take color photographs or cause photographs to be taken of the areas of visible trauma on the child, and/or, if medically indicated, cause an examination to be performed. Such actions may be performed at public expense if they will provide appropriate documentation when filing the report. Photographic equipment shall be kept at the school and be available for this purpose.
      6. The written report that must be filed shall include all information which the Commissioner of Social Services may require.
      7. If it should be necessary for Child Protective Services to interview a child at school to ascertain whether he/she has been abused or maltreated, or to obtain documentation of such acts, the interview should be conducted in the presence of a school official, unless circumstances require otherwise. The school official shall examine and verify the credentials of Child Protective Services worker(s) before allowing such worker(s) to either interview the child or to examine the child’s records.
      If sexual abuse is indicated, the presence of a same-sex staff member during the interview is appropriate.
      8. The Building Principal shall request a summary report of the investigation of a case referred to Child Protective Services so the district can take appropriate next steps.
      9. The district shall maintain an ongoing training program which will address identification and reporting of child abuse and maltreatment. Attendance at sessions of this training program shall be required of all school officials.
      10. Employee handbooks shall include a copy of these regulations and the related Board policy concerning child abuse and reporting requirements.
      11. Only one report of any suspected abuse is required.

      12. School personnel who, in good faith, make a report or take photographs of injuries and bruises have immunity from any liability, civil or criminal. The good faith of any person required to report cases of child abuse or maltreatment is presumed.

      13. School personnel who have reasonable cause to suspect that a child has died as a result of child abuse or maltreatment shall report that fact to the appropriate medical examiner or coroner.

      14. Any person required to report suspected cases of child abuse or maltreatment and who fails to do so may be found guilty of a class A misdemeanor and may be held civilly liable for the damages caused by this failure.

      15. Any school employee who fails to comply with this policy is subject to discipline in accordance with collective bargaining agreements and/or policy.

      Replaced June 19, 2012
      Reviewed February 3, 2015

      5500 Student Records

      The Board of Education recognizes its legal responsibility to maintain the confidentiality of student records. As part of this responsibility, the Board will ensure that eligible students and parents/guardians have the right to inspect and review education records, the right to seek to amend education records and the right to have some control over the disclosure of information from the education record. The procedures for ensuring these rights shall be consistent with state and federal law, including the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (FERPA) and its implementing regulations.
      The Board also recognizes its responsibility to ensure the orderly retention and disposition of the district’s student records in accordance with Schedule ED-1 as adopted by the Board in policy 1120.
      The District will use reasonable methods to provide access to student educational records only to those authorized under the law and to authenticate the identity of the requestor. The district will document requests for and release of records, and retain the documentation in accordance with law. Furthermore, pursuant to Chapter 56 of the Laws of 2014, the district will execute agreements with third-party contractors who collect, process, store, organize, manage or analyze student personally identifiable information (PII) to ensure that the contractors comply with the law in using appropriate means to safeguard the data.
      The Superintendent of Schools shall be responsible for ensuring that all requirements under law and the Commissioner’s regulations are carried out by the district.

      Definitions

      Authorized Representative: an authorized representative is any individual or entity designated by a State or local educational authority or a Federal agency headed by the Secretary, the Comptroller General or the Attorney General to carry out audits, evaluations, or enforcement or compliance activities relating to educational programs.
      Education Record: means those records, in any format, directly related to the student and maintained by the district or by a party acting on behalf of the district, except:

      (a) records in the sole possession of the individual who made it and not accessible or revealed to any other person except a substitute (e.g. memory joggers);
      (b) records of the district’s law enforcement unit;
      (c) grades on peer-graded papers before they are collected and recorded by a teacher.

      Eligible student: a student who has reached the age of 18 or is attending postsecondary school.
      Legitimate educational interest: a school official has a legitimate educational interest if they need to review a student’s record in order to fulfill his or her professional responsibilities.
      Personally identifiable information: is information that would allow a reasonable person in the school or its community, who does not have personal knowledge of the relevant circumstances, to identify the student with reasonable certainty. Such data might include social security number, student identification number, parents’ name and/or address, a biometric record, etc.
      School official: a person who has a legitimate education interest in a student record who is employed by the district as an administrator, supervisor, instructor or support staff member (including health or medical staff and law enforcement unit personnel); a member of the Board of Education; a person or company with whom the district has contracted to perform a special task (such as attorney, auditor, medical consultant or therapist); or a parent or student serving on an official committee, such as disciplinary or grievance committee, or assisting another school official performing his or her tasks.
      Third party contractor: is any person or entity, other than an educational agency, that receives student data or teacher or principal data from an educational agency pursuant to a contract or other written agreement for purposes of providing services to such educational agency, including but not limited to data management or storage services, conducting studies or audit or evaluation of publicly funded programs.

      Annual Notification

      At the beginning of each school year, the district will publish a notification that informs parents, guardians and students currently in attendance of their rights under FERPA and New York State Law and the procedures for exercising those rights. A ‘Parents’ Bill of Rights for Data Privacy and Security’ will be posted on the district website and included in any agreements with third-party contractors.(see 5500-E.4) The notice and ‘Bill of Rights’ may be published in a newspaper, handbook or other school bulletin or publication. The notice and ‘Bill of Rights’ will also be provided to parents, guardians, and students who enroll during the school year.
      The notice and Parents’ Bill of Rights will include a statement that the parent/guardian or eligible student has a right to:
      1. inspect and review the student’s education records;

      2. request that records be amended to ensure that they are not inaccurate, misleading, or otherwise in violation of the student’s privacy rights;
      3. consent to disclosure of personally identifiable information contained in the student’s education records, except to the extent that FERPA authorizes disclosure without consent; and
      4. file a complaint with the United States Department of Education alleging failure of the district to comply with FERPA and its regulations; and/or file a complaint regarding a possible data breach by a third party contractor with the district and/or the New York State Education Department’s Chief Privacy Officer for failure to comply with state law.

      The annual notice and Parents’ Bill of Rights will inform parents/guardians and students:

      1. that it is the district’s policy to disclose personally identifiable information from student records, without consent, to other school officials within the district whom the district has determined to have legitimate educational interests. The notice will define ‘school official’ and ‘legitimate educational interest.’
      2. that, upon request, the district will disclose education records without consent to officials of another school district in which a student seeks to or intends to enroll or is actually enrolled.
      3. that personally identifiable information will be released to third party authorized representatives for the purposes of educational program audit, evaluation, enforcement or compliance purposes.
      4. that the district, at its discretion, releases directory information (see definition below) without prior consent, unless the parent/guardian or eligible student has exercised their right to prohibit release of the information without prior written consent. The district will not sell directory information.
      5. that, upon request, the district will disclose a high school student’s name, address and telephone number to military recruiters and institutions of higher learning unless the parent or secondary school student exercises their right to prohibit release of the information without prior written consent.
      6. of the procedure for exercising the right to inspect, review and request amendment of student records.
      7. that the district will provide information as a supplement to the ‘Parents’ Bill of Rights’ about third parties with which the district contracts that use or have access to personally identifiable student data.

      The district may also release student education records, or the personally identifiable information contained within, without consent, where permitted under federal law and regulation. For a complete list of exceptions to FERPA’s prior consent requirements see accompanying regulation 5500-R, Section 5.

      The district shall effectively notify parents, guardians and students who have a primary or home language other than English.
      In the absence of the parent or secondary school student exercising their right to opt out of the release of information to the military, the district is required to, under federal law, release the information indicated in number five (5) above.

      Directory Information

      The district has the option under FERPA of designating certain categories of student information as “directory information.” The Board directs that “directory information” be defined as including the following information:

      • student’s name,
      • parent’s name(s),
      • address,
      • academic interests,
      • participation in officially recognized school activities and sports,
      • periods of school attendance,
      • graduation,
      • awards received, photograph, art work, and
      • future educational plans.

      Social security numbers or other personally identifiable information will not be considered directory information.
      Students who opt out of having directory information shared are still required to disclose their student ID cards.
      Once the proper FERPA notification is given by the district, a parent/guardian or student will have 14 days to notify the district of any objections they have to any of the “directory information” designations. If no objection is received, the district may release this information without prior approval of the parent/guardian or student for the release. Once the student or parent/guardian provides the “opt-out,” it will remain in effect after the student is no longer enrolled in the school district.
      The district may elect to provide a single notice regarding both directory information and information disclosed to military recruiters and institutions of higher education.

      Adopted February 3, 2015

      5500-R Student Records – Regulation

      It is recognized that the confidentiality of student records must be maintained. The terms used in this regulation are defined in the accompanying policy. The following necessary procedures have been adopted to protect the confidentiality of student records.
      Section 1. Pursuant to the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) and state law it shall be the policy of this school district to permit parents/guardians and eligible students to inspect and review any and all official records, files and data directly related to that student, including all materials that are incorporated into each student’s cumulative record folder.
      The rights created by FERPA and state law transfer from the parents/guardians to the student once the student attains eligible student status. However, districts can disclose information to parents of eligible students under certain circumstances, including when the student is a dependent under the IRS tax code, when the student has violated a law or the school’s rules regarding alcohol or substance abuse (and the student is under 21); when the information is needed to protect the health or safety of the student or other individuals.
      Section 2. Parents/guardians or the eligible student will have an opportunity for a hearing to challenge the content of the student’s school records, to insure that the records are not inaccurate, misleading, or otherwise in violation of the privacy or other rights of the student, and to provide an opportunity for the correction or deletion of any such inaccurate, misleading, or otherwise inappropriate data contained therein.
      Section 3. A letter shall be sent annually to parents/guardians of students currently in attendance and eligible students currently in attendance informing them of their rights pursuant to FERPA and state law, and will include a Parents’ Bill of Rights. See Exhibits 5500-E.1 and 5500-E.4. The district shall effectively notify parents, guardians and students who have a primary or home language other than English.
      Section 4. To implement the rights provided for in sections 1 and 2, the following procedures are adopted:

      1. A parent/guardian or an eligible student who wishes to inspect and review student records shall make a request for access to the student’s school records, in writing, to the Building Principal. Upon receipt of such request, arrangements shall be made to provide access to such records within 30 business days after the request has been received. If the record to which access is sought contains information on more than one student, the parent/guardian or eligible student will be allowed to inspect and review only the
      2. specific information about the student on whose behalf access is sought.
      3. A parent/guardian or an eligible student who wishes to challenge the contents of the student’s school records shall submit a request, in writing, to the Building Principal identifying the record or records which they believe to be inaccurate, misleading or otherwise in violation of the privacy or other rights of the student together with a statement of the reasons for their challenge to the record.
      4. Upon receipt of a written challenge, the Building Principal shall provide a written response indicating either that he/she:
      a. finds the challenged record inaccurate, misleading or otherwise in violation of the student’s rights and that the record will be corrected or deleted; or
      b. finds no basis for correcting or deleting the record in question, but that the parent/guardian or eligible student will be given an opportunity for a hearing. The written response by the Building Principal shall be provided to the parent/guardian or eligible student within 14 days after receipt of the written challenge. The response shall also outline the procedures to be followed with respect to a hearing regarding the request for amendment.
      4. Within 14 days of receipt of the response from the Building Principal, a parent/guardian or eligible student may request, in writing, that a hearing be held to review the determination of the Building Principal.
      5. The hearing shall be held within 10 days after the request for the hearing has been received. The hearing will be held by the Superintendent of Schools, unless the Superintendent has a direct interest in the outcome of the hearing, in which case the Superintendent will designate another individual who does not have a direct interest in the outcome of the hearing to hold the hearing.
      6. The parent/guardian or eligible student shall be given a full and fair opportunity to present evidence at the hearing. The parent/guardian or eligible student may, at their own expense, be assisted or represented by one or more individuals of his or her own choice, including an attorney.
      7. The Superintendent or other individual designated by the Superintendent will make a decision in writing within 14 days after the hearing.
      8. After the hearing, if the Superintendent or the individual designated by the Superintendent decides not to amend the record, the district will inform the parent/guardian or eligible student that they have the right to place a statement in the record commenting on the contested information or stating why he/she disagrees with the decision of the district. Any statement placed in the record will be maintained with the contested part of the student record for as long as the record is maintained. Further, the statement will be disclosed by the district whenever it discloses the portion of the record to which the statement relates.

      Section 5. Except to the extent that FERPA authorizes disclosure of student records without consent, student records, and any material contained therein which is personally identifiable, are confidential and will not be released or made available to persons other than parents/guardians or eligible students without the prior written consent of the parents/guardians or eligible student.
      Exceptions to FERPA’s prior consent requirement include, but are not limited to disclosure:

      1. To other school officials within the district who have been determined to have legitimate educational interests.
      2. To officials of another school, school system or post secondary institution where the student seeks or intends to enroll.
      3. To authorized representatives of the Comptroller General of the United States, the U.S. Secretary of Education, the U.S. Attorney General, or state and local education authorities in connection with an audit or evaluation of a federal- or state-supported education program or in compliance with legal requirements related to those programs.
      4. In connection with the student’s application for or receipt of financial aid.
      5. To state and local officials or authorities in compliance with state law that concerns the juvenile justice system and the system’s ability to effectively serve, prior to adjudication, the student whose records are being released.
      6. To organizations conducting studies for, or on behalf of, education agencies or institutions, in order to develop tests, administer student aid, or improve instruction.
      7. To accrediting organizations to carry out their accrediting functions.
      8. To parents of a dependent student, as defined by the Internal Revenue Code.
      9. To comply with a judicial order or lawfully issued subpoena, including ex parte court orders under the USA Patriot Act. Prior to complying with a judicial order or subpoena, the district will make a reasonable effort to notify the parent/guardian or eligible student, unless the district has been ordered not to disclose the existence or content of the order or subpoena, or unless the parent is the subject of a court proceeding involving child dependency or child abuse and neglect matters, and the order is issued in context of that proceeding.

      10. In connection with a health or safety emergency, the district will disclose information when, taking into account the totality of circumstances, a determination is made that there is an articulable and significant threat to the health or safety of the student or other individuals.
      11. To teachers and school officials in other schools who have legitimate educational interests in the behavior or the student when the information concerns disciplinary action taken against the student for conduct that posed a significant risk to the safety or well-being of that student, other students, or other members of the school community.
      12. To provide information that the district has designated as “directory information.”
      13. To provide information from the school’s law enforcement unit records.
      14. To a court, when the district is involved in legal action against a parent or student, those records necessary to proceed with the legal action.
      15. To the U.S. Secretary of Agriculture, its authorized representatives from the Food and Nutrition Service, or contractors acting on its behalf, to monitor, evaluate and measure performance of federally-subsidized school food programs, subject to certain privacy protections.
      16. To any caseworker or representative of a state or local child welfare agency or tribal organization who has the right to access a student’s case plan, where the agency or organization is legally responsible for the care and protection of that student, not to be redisclosed except as permitted by law.

      The district will use reasonable methods to provide access to student educational records to only those authorized under the law and to authenticate the identity of the requestor. The district will use an array of methods to protect records, including physical controls (such as locked cabinets), technological controls (such as role-based access controls for electronic records, password protection, firewalls, encryption), and administrative procedures. The district will document requests for and release of records, and retain the documentation in accordance with law.
      If the district enters into a contract with a third party that calls for receipt of student personally identifiable information (PII) by the contractor, the agreement shall include a data security and privacy plan that includes a signed copy of the Parents’ Bill of Rights and addresses the following, among other contractual elements:

      1. training of vendor employees regarding confidentiality requirements;
      2. limiting access to education records to those individuals who have a legitimate educational interest;
      3. prohibiting the use education records for any other purpose than those authorized under the contract;
      4. maintaining reasonable administrative, technical and physical safeguards to protect student personally identifiable information (PII);
      5. using encryption technology to protect data while in motion or in its custody to prevent unauthorized disclosure;
      6. breach and notification procedures.

      The district will, via written agreements, designate authorized representatives who have access to educational records. The written agreement will specify how the work falls within the exception, what personally identifiable information is to be disclosed, how the educational record will be used, and that the records will be destroyed by the authorized representative once they are no longer needed for that purpose or the agreement expires.
      Section 6. Whenever a student record or any material contained therein is to be made available to third persons, other than those covered by the exceptions authorized by FERPA, the parent/guardian or eligible student must file a written consent to such action. The written consent must specify the records to be released, the reasons for such release, and to whom. If the parent or eligible student so requests, the district will provide him or her with a copy of the records disclosed. In addition, if the parent of a student who is not an eligible student so requests, the district will provide the student with a copy of the records disclosed.
      Section 7. Unless specifically exempted by FERPA, all persons requesting access to such records will be required to sign a written form which indicates the legitimate educational interest that such person has in inspecting the records. Such form will be kept with the student’s file and will be maintained with the student’s file as long as the file is maintained.

      Additional Rights Under New York State Law Related to the Protection of Student Data and Third Party Contractors

      New York State Law offers parents additional rights beyond FERPA in regard to third party contractors and student student personally identifiable information (PII). The district shall post on its website and distribute a ‘Parents’ Bill of Rights for Data Privacy and Security.’ The ‘Parents’ Bill of Rights’ shall establish the following:

      • Educational purpose: The use of student personally identifiable information (PII) is for educational or related purposes only.
      • Transparency: Disclosure of third party contracts and their privacy provisions.
      • Authorization: Assurance that proper authorization will be secured prior to the release of PII.
      • Security: A description of the measures in place to protect PII, without compromising the security plan.
      • Data Breach Notification: An explanation of the procedures in the event of a data breach.
      • Complaint Procedure: The district offers a complaint procedure in the event that a parent suspects a breach of student data by a third party contractor and provides information about lodging a complaint with the New York State Education Department’s Chief Privacy Officer.

      Retention and Disposition of Student Records

      The Board has adopted the Records Retention and Disposition Schedule ED-1 issued pursuant to Article 57-A of the Arts and Cultural Affairs Law, which contains the legal minimum retention periods for district records. The Board directs all district officials to adhere to the schedule and all other relevant laws in retaining and disposing of student records. In accordance with Article 57-A, the district will dispose of only those records described in the schedule after they have met the minimum retention periods set forth in the schedule. The district will dispose of only those records that do not have sufficient administrative, fiscal, legal or historical value to merit retention beyond the established legal minimum periods.

      Reviewed February 3, 2015

      5500-E.1 Student Records – Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) Notice Regarding Access to Student Records and Student Information

      Dear Parent or Eligible Student:
      This is to advise you of your rights with respect to student records pursuant to the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA). FERPA is a federal law designed to protect the privacy of student records. The law gives parents and students over 18 years of age (referred to in the law as “eligible students”) the following rights:

      1. The right to inspect and review the student’s education records within 30 business days of the day the district receives a request for access. Parents or eligible students should submit to the Building Principal a written request that identifies the records they wish to inspect. The Principal will make arrangements for access and notify the parent or eligible student of the time and place where the records may be inspected.
      2. The right to request the amendment of the student’s education records that the parent or eligible student believes is inaccurate or misleading or otherwise in violation of the student’s privacy under FERPA. Parents or eligible students may ask the district to amend a record that they believe is inaccurate or misleading by writing the Principal, clearly identifying the part of the record they want changed, and specifying why it is inaccurate or misleading.

      If the district decides not to amend the record as requested by the parent or eligible student, the district will notify the parent or eligible student of the decision and advise them of their right to a hearing regarding the request for amendment. Additional information regarding the hearing procedures will be provided to the parent or eligible student when notified of the right to a hearing.
      3. The right to provide written consent before the district discloses personally identifiable information contained in the student’s education records, except to the extent that FERPA authorizes disclosure without consent. The exceptions, which permit disclosure without consent, include disclosure to school officials with legitimate educational interests or an authorized representative. A school official is a person employed by the district as an administrator, supervisor, instructor, or support staff member (including health or medical staff and law enforcement unit personnel); a person serving on the school board; a person or company with whom the district has contracted to perform a special task(such as an attorney, auditor, medical consultant, or therapist); or a parent or student serving on an official committee, such as a disciplinary or grievance committee, or assisting another school official in performing his or her tasks. A school official has a legitimate educational interest if the official needs to review an education record in order to fulfill his or her professional responsibility.
      An authorized representative is any individual or entity designated by a State or local educational authority or a Federal agency headed by the Secretary, the Comptroller General or the Attorney General to carry out audits, evaluations, or enforcement or compliance activities relating to educational programs.
      Upon request, the district discloses education records without consent to officials of another school district in which a student seeks or intends to enroll.
      For a complete list of exceptions to FERPA’s prior consent requirements see regulation 5500-R, Section 5.

      4. 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. The Office that administers FERPA is:

      Family Policy Compliance Office
      U.S. Department of Education
      400 Maryland Avenue, SW
      Washington, DC 20202-4605
      Attached to this notice are other important documents related to student data privacy: 5500-E.2, Notification of Directory Information Designations; 5500-E.3, Opt Out of Release of Directory Information Form; 5500-E.3.1 Sample Notification Opt Out of Release of Disclosure to the Military, 5500-E.4, Parents’ Bill of Rights for Data Privacy and Security; 5500-E.4.1 Parents’ Bill of Rights for Data Privacy and Security- Third Party Contractor Supplement; and 5500-E.5 Guilderland High School Transcript Request Form, . If you have questions about these notices, please contact me at (insert contact information)
      Sincerely,
      {Insert Building Principal’s Name Here}
      Reviewed February 3, 2015

      5500-E.2 Student Records – Notification of Directory Information Designations Exhibit

      In addition to the rights outlined in the accompanying letter (5500-E.1), FERPA also gives the school district the option of designating certain categories of student information as “directory information.” Directory information includes student:

      • student’s name,
      • parent’s name(s),
      • address,
      • academic interests,
      • participation in officially recognized school activities and sports,
      • periods of school attendance,
      • graduation,
      • awards received, photograph, art work, and
      • future educational plans.

      You may object to the release of any or all of this “directory information.” However, you must do so in writing within 10 business days of receiving this notice. If we do not receive a written objection, we will be authorized to release this information without your consent. For your convenience, you may note your objections to the release of directory information on the enclosed form (5500-E.3) and return it to the Building Principal.

      Reviewed February 3, 2015

      5500-E.4 Student Records – Parents’ Bill of Rights-Student Data Exhibit

      The Guilderland School District, in recognition of the risk of identity theft and unwarranted invasion of privacy, affirms its commitment to safeguarding student personally identifiable information (PII) in educational records from unauthorized access or disclosure in accordance with State and Federal law. The Guilderland School District establishes the following parental bill of rights:

      • Student personally identifiable information (PII) will be collected and disclosed only as necessary to achieve educational purposes in accordance with State and Federal Law.
      • A student’s personally identifiable information cannot be sold or released for any commercial purposes by a third party contractor. The district will not sell student personally identifiable information and will not release it for commercial purposes, other than directory information released by the district in accordance with district policy;
      • Parents have the right to inspect and review the complete contents of their child’s education record (for more information about how to exercise this right, see 5500-R);
      • State and federal laws protect the confidentiality of personally identifiable information. Safeguards associated with industry standards and best practices, including but not limited to, encryption, firewalls, and password protection, must be in place when data is stored or transferred;
      • A complete list of all student data elements collected by the State Education Department is available for public review at http://www.p12.nysed.gov/irs/sirs/.
      • Parents have the right to have complaints about possible breaches of student data addressed. Complaints should be directed to (Dr. Lin Severance, Records Access Officer, GSCD, PO Box 18, 8 School Road, Guilderland Center, NY 12085, (518) 456-6200-x3117; records.accessofficer@guilderlandschools.net). Complaints can also be directed to the New York State Education Department by writing to the Chief Privacy Officer, New York State Education Department, 89 Washington Avenue, Albany, NY 12234 or by email to CPO@mail.nysed.gov.
      • In the event that the District engages a third party provider to deliver student educational services, the contractor or subcontractors will be obligated to adhere to State and Federal Laws to safeguard student personally identifiable information (PII). Parents can request information about third party contractors by contacting (Dr. Lin Severance, Records Access Officer, GSCD, PO Box 18, 8 School Road, Guilderland Center, NY 12085,
      (518) 456-6200-x3117; records.accessofficer@guilderlandschools.net) or can access the information on the district’s website (www.guilderlandschools.org).

      Reviewed February 3, 2015

      5500-E.4.1 Student Records – Third Party Contractors Exhibit

      The district engages several third party contractors to provide services. In this capacity, the company may collect, process, manage, store or analyze student personally identifiable information (PII).
      The district will require that each third party contractor use the education records only for the purposes explicitly authorized by the district and no other.
      The third party contractor will ensure that subcontractors or others that the company shares PII will abide by data protection and security requirements by use of password protections, administrative procedures, encryption and firewalls.
      The third party contractor will take reasonable measures to ensure the confidentiality of student PII by maintaining reasonable administrative, technical and physical safeguards to protect the security, confidentiality and integrity of personally identifiable student information in its custody; and use encryption technology to protect data from unauthorized disclosure using technology or methodology specified by the secretary of the United States Department of Health and Human Services.
      Parents may challenge the accuracy of PII held by a third party contractor by contacting Dr. Lin Severance, Records Access Officer, G.C.S.D., PO Box 18, 8 School Road, Guilderland Center, NY12085, (518)456-6200-x3117;
      records.accessofficer@guilderlandschools.net). .
      Once the contractor has completed its service to the district, records containing student PII will be destroyed.
      Reviewed February 3, 2015

      5550 Student Privacy

      The Board recognizes its responsibility to enact policies that protect student privacy, in accordance with law. This is particularly relevant in the context of the administration of surveys that collect personal information, the disclosure of personal information for marketing purposes and in conducting physical exams.

      Surveys

      The Board of Education recognizes that student surveys are a valuable tool in determining student needs for educational services. Parents have the right to review all instructional material that will be used for a survey, analysis, or evaluation as part of a U.S. Department of Education (DOE)Bfunded program. In addition, no minor students under 18 years of age may without parental consent, take part in a survey, analysis or evaluation funded in whole or in part by the U.S. Department of Education that reveals information concerning:

      1. political affiliations or beliefs of the student or the student’s parent;
      2. mental or psychological problems of the student or the student’s family;
      3. sex behavior or attitudes;
      4. illegal, anti-social, self-incriminating or demeaning behavior;
      5. critical appraisals of other individuals with whom respondents have close family relationships;
      6. legally recognized privileged or analogous relationships, such as those of lawyers, physicians and ministers;
      7. religious practices, affiliations or beliefs of the student or the student’s parent; or
      8. income (other than that required by law to determine eligibility for participation in a program or for receiving financial assistance under such program).

      Parent/guardians have the right to submit a written statement to opt their child out of participation in any surveys dealing with subject matter referenced above.

      Marketing

      The school district shall not collect, disclose, or use personal information gathered from students for the purpose of marketing or selling that information, or providing it to others for that purpose. This does not apply to the collection, disclosure, or use of personal information collected from students for the exclusive purpose of developing, evaluating or providing educational products or services for, or to students or educational institutions, such as:

      a. College or other postsecondary education recruitment, or military recruitment;
      b. Book clubs, magazines and programs providing access to low-cost literary products;
      c. Curriculum and instructional materials used in schools;
      d. Tests and assessments used to provide cognitive, evaluative, diagnostic, clinical, aptitude, or achievement information for students or to generate other statistically useful data for the purpose of securing such tests and assessments, and the subsequent analysis and public release of the aggregate data from such tests and assessments;
      e. Student recognition programs; and
      f. The sale by students of products or services to raise funds for school-related activities.

      In the event of such collection, disclosure or use of personal information gathered from students, student privacy shall be protected by the school district pursuant to the requirements of FERPA.

      Parents/guardians and eligible students, shall also have the right to inspect, upon their request, a survey created by a party other than the U.S. DOE before the survey is administered or distributed by a school to a student. Such requests must be submitted, in writing, to the Building Principal with a response to be at least two weeks in advance of any survey to be given.

      Inspection of Instructional Material

      Parents/guardians shall have the right to review [inspect], upon request, any instructional materials, used as part of the educational curriculum for students. AInstructional materials@ are defined as: Ainstructional content that is provided to a student, regardless of format including printed or representational materials, audio-visual materials, and materials in electronic or digital formats (such as materials accessible through the Internet). It does not include tests or academic assessments.@
      A parent/guardian who wishes to [inspect and] review such instructional material shall submit a request in writing to the Building Principal. Upon receipt of such request, arrangements shall be made to provide access to such material within ten (10) school days after the request has been received.

      Physical Examination

      Parents shall be notified of their right for students to opt out of participation in the administration of “invasive physical examinations” which mean any medical examination that involves the exposure of private body parts, or any act during such examination that includes incision, insertion, or injecting into the body, but does not include a hearing, vision or scoliosis screening. It does not apply to any physical examination or screening required or permitted under State law, including those permitted without parental notification. State law ‘903 requires each student in grades 1, 3, 7 and 10 will have a physical examination by family or school doctor. Hearing, vision, scoliosis and BMI screenings will be performed by the school district.

      Notification

      Parents/guardians and eligible students shall be notified at least annually, at the beginning of the school year as part of the district calendar as well as posting this policy on the district website and when enrolling students for the first time in district schools of this policy. The school district shall also notify parents/guardians within a reasonable period of time after any substantive change to this policy.

      Adopted February 1, 2011
      Adopted April 12, 2016

      5550-E Student Privacy Exhibit – Notification to Parents

      Dear Parent/Guardian:
      The Board of Education recognizes that student privacy is an important concern of parents and the Board wishes to ensure that student privacy is protected pursuant to the Protection of Pupil Rights Amendment, as revised by the No Child Left Behind Act. To that end, the board has
      [adopted/revised] a policy on student privacy.
      Pursuant to the Protection of Pupil Rights Amendment, as revised by the No Child Left Behind Act, and the [name of school district] policy on student privacy, you have the right to opt your child out of the following activities:

      A. The collection, disclosure and use of personal information gathered from students for the purpose of marketing or selling that information. This does not apply to the collection, disclosure, or use of personal information collected from students for the exclusive purpose of developing, evaluating or providing educational products or services for, or to students, such as:
      1. College or other postsecondary education recruitment, or military recruitment;
      2. Book clubs, magazines and programs providing access to low-cost literary products
      3. Curriculum and instructional materials used in schools;
      4. Tests and assessments used to provide cognitive, evaluative, diagnostic, clinical, aptitude, or achievement information for students or to generate other statistically useful data for the purpose of securing such tests and assessments, and the subsequent analysis and public release of the aggregate data from such tests and assessments;
      5. Student recognition programs; and
      6. The sale by students of products or services to raise funds for school-related activities.
      B. The administration of any survey revealing information concerning one or more of the following:
      1. political affiliations or beliefs of the student or the student’s parent;
      2. mental or psychological problems of the student or the student’s family;
      3. sex behavior or attitudes;
      4. illegal, anti-social, self-incriminating or demeaning behavior;
      5. critical appraisals of other individuals with whom respondents have close family relationships;
      6. legally recognized privileged or analogous relationships, such as those of lawyers, physicians and ministers;
      7. religious practices, affiliations or beliefs of the student or the student’s parent; or
      8. income (other than that required by law to determine eligibility for participation in a program or for receiving financial assistance under such program).

      C. The administration of any non-emergency, invasive physical examination or screening that is required as a condition of attendance, administered by the school not necessary to protect the immediate health or safety of the student or other students and not otherwise permitted or required by state law. The term “invasive physical examination” means any medical examination that involves the exposure of private body parts, or any act during such examination that includes incision, insertion, or injecting into the body, but does not include a hearing, vision or scoliosis screening. It does not apply to any physical examination or screening required or permitted under State law, including those permitted without parental notification.
      At this time, we expect that activities related to the above-mentioned items will take place on or close to the following dates:

      [Insert list of marketing, survey and physical examination activities for which notice must be given.]

      Please review this list. If there are any activities you wish to “opt out” of on behalf of your child, please sign and return this form to the school within 10 days.
      If you have any questions about the district’s student privacy policy and your right to opt your child out of certain activities, please contact [insert name and telephone number of Building Principal].
      Sincerely,
      Building Principal
      Reviewed February 1, 2011

      5605 Voter Registration for Students

      The Board of Education believes that getting young people involved in the election process helps to secure the future of democracy by preparing young people to be educated, engaged voters who have formed that habit of voting and contributing to civic life early.

      In an effort to promote student voter registration, the Board directs the high school principal to  offer all students who are at least 16 years old (but will not be 18 years old by the next election)the opportunity to pre-register. These students must be otherwise qualified to register to vote.

       These pre-registrations will be automatically registered upon reaching the age of eligibilityfollowing verification of the person’s qualifications and address.

      The district will do so by offering registration materials through homeroom by January 31 to the Junior class. The district will continue to encourage activities to register students to vote.

      Students who do not wish to pre-register to vote do not have to do so. There will be no penalty (including participation grades or credits) for choosing not to do so.

      Ref: Election Law § 5-507

      Adopted July 2, 2019

      5620 Pregnant Students

      The Board of Education recognizes the opportunity to receive an education as a prerequisite to leading a full and productive life. Therefore, pregnant students will be encouraged to continue participation in the public school program.
      As soon as pregnancy is medically confirmed, the Board recommends that the student and her parent(s) or guardian(s) consult with the Building Principal and other appropriate staff to plan an appropriate education program.
      A minor under 16 must continue her education. During pregnancy and the period of pregnancy-related disability which follows childbirth, a student shall be entitled to home instruction, upon the request and submission of a physician’s note recommending homebound instruction. Every effort will be made to see that the educational program of the student is disrupted as little as possible; that available student health and counseling services, as well as instruction, are provided; that the student is encouraged to return to high school after delivery; and that every opportunity is given to complete high school. A pregnant student who desires to attend regularly scheduled classes prior to the time of childbirth may do so to the extent that her physician approves of such attendance. A minor under 16 must return to school after the period of disability that follows childbirth.

      Adopted November 20, 2012

      5660 Student Gifts and Solicitations

      Only those organizations granted approval by the Board of Education shall have permission to solicit donations and contributions from students. All fund-raising activities must be voluntary and in accord with the Rules of the Regents and the State Education Department’s “Guidelines Relating to Solicitation of Charitable Donations from Children”. No direct solicitation of students is permitted during school hours.
      The following constitute permissible indirect forms of solicitation, and the Board has the authority to determine which, if any, forms it will allow:

      1. the sale of tickets to a social, musical, or athletic event where a portion of the funds go to a charitable purpose;
      2. the recruitment of students during school hours to participate in fund-raising activities to be conducted off school premises and/or when school is not in session. School personnel are permitted to hang posters or distribute flyers notifying students of these activities. However, school personnel may not act as a conduit and collect funds from students on behalf of a charity for which they recruited; and
      3. the placement of a bin or collection box in a hallway or other common area for the voluntary donation of food, clothing or money.

      Gifts

      Students are discouraged from presenting the school staff with elaborate gifts. Inexpensive gifts will be allowed when reasonable to express gratitude. Letters of appreciation are always welcome.

      Adopted July 5, 2011
      Adopted April 12, 2016

      5695 Students and Personal Electronic Devices

      The Board of Education recognizes that there are personal electronic devices that have educational applications. These devices shall be allowed to be used in classrooms when they are included as part of a lesson under the direction of a teacher.
      The Board acknowledges that personal electronic devices can be a positive means to facilitate communication; however, the display and/or use of such devices can cause disruption to the educational process.
      Therefore, to prevent such disruption of the educational process, the display and/or use by students of personal electronic devices shall be administered in accordance with age-appropriate procedures.
      In emergency situations, exceptions to the prohibition of the use of personal electronic devices may be granted by teachers or administrators.
      Misuse of any of these electronic devices will result in its confiscation as outlined in the code of conduct. Some uses of personal electronic devices constitute violation of the school district code of conduct and in some instances, the law. The school district will cooperate with law enforcement officials as appropriate.

      Adopted: June 9, 2009
      Revised and Adopted February 9, 2010
      Revised, Adopted March 7, 2017

      5695-E Students and Personal Electronic Devices – Exhibit

      Secondary Level

      Guilderland High School

      Below is the wording of our Electronic Device policy as it appears in the Student Agenda Handbook. The policy was just recently developed by Cabinet and implemented in Sept of 2007. The primary intent of the policy as adopted is two-fold:

      #1. To change the perspective of the students from one of cell phones and I-pods being something to which they are entitled; to something that they may be allowed to use at appropriate times and in appropriate situations.

      #2. Reassure teachers that they do indeed have the right to confiscate anything that they deem as being disruptive or distracting to the education process, while at the same time affording teachers the autonomy to allow occasional or situational use of such devices.(i.e., an advanced art teacher allowing students to listen to their I-pods while working on their drawings.)

      Walkmans, Cell Phones and I-Pods

      Electronic, communication and entertainment devices are not to be used during class, assemblies or in any other instructional setting. They may, however, be used before and after school, during passing time, during your assigned lunch period and when specifically deemed appropriate for an instructional purpose or authorized by a staff member during Advisory. These electronic devices include, but are not limited to cell phones, I-pods, MP3 players, CD players and DVD players.
      Also, students may not use motion video or still photographic devices in the building unless given specific authorization by a staff member. The use of these devices in classrooms, or in other parts of the building is disruptive to the educational environment and is a risk to academic integrity and personal privacy.
      If an electronic device is seen during instructional time or photographic or video equipment is used without authorization, it may be confiscated by any staff person and will be returned to the student by an administrator at the conclusion of the school day. Any subsequent offenses may result in further disciplinary action and/or the device only being returned to a parent or guardian.

      Farnsworth Middle School Personal Electronic Devices

      (Source: 2008-09 Farnsworth Middle School Student/Parent Handbook)

      Use of Radios, Beepers, Cellular Phones, Personal Digital Assistants and Digital Cameras

      Radios, headsets, beepers, CD players, MP3 players, personal digital assistants, digital cameras, etc., are disruptions to the learning process. The use of these items during the school day is prohibited. All such equipment should be turned off and put in the student=s book bag before entering school. Book bags must be locked in lockers during the school day. Any of these devices that are found outside a student=s book bag will be confiscated. Students should see their House Principal to make arrangement for its return.

      Cellular Phone Use

      The display and/or use of a cellular phone is prohibited by FMS students during the instructional day. Students= cellular phones must be turned off and secured at all times while at FMS. An exception to use a cellular phone may be granted by the supervising adult in an emergency situation. Misuse of a cellular phone or its features will result in its confiscation and a parent may be required to pick it up.

      ELEMENTARY LEVEL: Building specific – practices may be obtained from each elementary principal.

      Reviewed: May 12, 2009
      Reviewed January 5, 2010

      The district is not responsible for facts or opinions contained on any linked site. Some links and features on this site require the Adobe Acrobat Reader to view. Visit the Adobe website to download the free Acrobat Reader. This website was produced by the Capital Region BOCES Communications Service, Albany, NY. Copyright © 2019. All rights reserved.