Conduct and Discipline
Discipline at RMS is used as an opportunity to foster student growth toward responsible decision making and positive choices. Consequences are listed as levels and are reviewed on a case by case basis based on relevant facts and careful consideration. The school should be safe and secure places to acquire an education and students have the responsibility to assist and cooperate with the school faculty, staff and administrators. The following school policies and procedures apply during the school day; all school related events (whether during the school day, before or after regular school hours, and inside or outside of the building), and on school transportation (BOE Policy 7:220). If it is a school-related event, regular school rules apply. (BOE Policy 7:130)
Infractions that occur off school grounds and outside of school hours may be given school consequences if it is determined by school staff that the infraction would disrupt the educational environment of the school.
The Board of Education establishes the rules regarding student conduct. Disciplinary action will be applied within the following guidelines in a firm, fair, and consistent manner. A discipline referral will be completed. Discipline procedures may include, but are not limited to, the following disciplinary measures: teacher and after school detentions, denial of privileges, restitution, In-School Suspension (ISS), removal from class, Out-of-School Suspension (OSS) (BOE Policy 7:200), or expulsion (BOE Policy 7:210).
Student Discipline Reform–Senate Bill 100 information regarding the disciplinary exclusion (suspension and expulsion) of students from school (Public Act 99-0456).
Rotolo Middle School is a PBIS (Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports) school. PBIS believes in ensuring all students are provided the most effective instructional and behavioral practices and interventions. RMS has adopted B.A.R.K. as the acronym that identifies the expectations for our students: Bulldogs Are responsible, Respect others, and Keep the environment safe. Students are reminded of these expectations and may be rewarded with “BARK tags” when they are found to be following the BARK principles. Currently, behavior expectations have been taught and modeled for the following: After School, Arrival and Dismissal, Assemblies, Bathroom, Bus, Cafeteria, Classroom, Field Trips, Hallway, LMC, and Technology.
In order that Rotolo Middle School relationships remain at the highest level, we have a “Hands-Off Policy.” This is strictly adhered to in the building and on the campus. Any public displays of affection will be strongly discouraged by the building staff and may result in disciplinary consequences.
Teen Dating Violence
Engaging in teen dating violence that takes place at school, on school property, at school-sponsored activities, or in vehicles used for school-provided transportation is prohibited. For purposes of this policy, the term teen dating violence occurs whenever a student who is 13 to 19 years of age uses or threatens to use physical, mental, or emotional abuse to control an individual in the dating relationship; or uses or threatens to use sexual violence in the dating relationship.
A volatile situation means any situation in which a physical altercation takes place, is threatened, postured, or is imminent between two or more students. Parents will be immediately contacted, the students may be removed from school, and there will be a discussion of appropriate consequences. Length of the suspension or nature of other appropriate discipline will be based on the severity of the situation, if the student had been involved in previous volatile situations, and any other information concerning the student’s past behavior acts which are unacceptable on an individual basis and become an even greater offense when a group engages in them (mob action). When appropriate or necessary, students may be placed in a supervised alternative study for a period of time that would allow administration to investigate the situation.
Classroom Behavior and Possible Classroom Disciplinary Consequences
Misbehavior is a matter of choice. Choosing to disrupt class infringes upon the right of the teacher to teach and the rights of the other students in class to learn. Even those disruptions that appear minor in nature seriously interfere with the educational process. Students are expected to use courteous behavior toward other students and teachers. Each time a student neglects this courtesy, he/she is subject to disciplinary actions.
Students should be in the classroom and ready to begin at the time class is scheduled to begin. Each time a student arrives after this time, without a pass, he/she is subject to disciplinary action.
As a general rule, consequences will follow the steps below. However, teachers have the authority to respond at any step based on the circumstances and the actions of the student. Student infractions are reviewed on a case by case basis based on relevant facts and careful consideration. Consequences and interventions may include:
- Teacher communication to the student that the behavior is inappropriate. (Warning)
- Parent contact
- Teacher detention, parent contact, and/or other teacher intervention
- Parent contact and Office Discipline Referral
- If the student does not respond to these interventions, the following interventions may be implemented.
- Parent Conference: The teacher or team of teachers will share their concerns with the student’s parents in order to gain insight, receive suggestions, and confront the problem in a cooperative, supportive effort.
- Building Intervention: The teacher(s) will bring the issue to the Building Level Intervention Team (BLIT) consisting of teachers, social workers, counselors, psychologist, speech pathologist and building administrators. Further discussion will take place and result in intervention strategies and a timeline to gather data, monitor progress, and update strategies.
- Building Administrator: The student will be held responsible for his/her actions that may include consequences at the discretion of a building administrator, up to and including recommendation to the Board of Education for expulsion.
- Recommendation for Case Study Evaluation: If the issue persists, despite exhaustive building intervention, which may include referral, discussion, and planning with BLIT and/or development of a Tier III Intervention plan, administration may recommend a case study evaluation to be completed in order to gather more information as to the specific nature of the problem.
Special note of disruptive behavior(s) toward the end of the school year: Generally, several “special” events occur toward the end of the school year. Examples include field trips, team luncheons, 8th Grade Dinner/Dance, activity periods, etc. These are privileges and may be taken away from those individuals whose prior behavior has deemed this consequence to occur. Students may, with parent contact, also be kept after school on the last day as a legitimate consequence for behavior.
Teachers may detain students in their own classrooms as a consequence for tardiness or rule infractions.
- Students should note that detentions take precedence over any non-academic activity.
- For formal disciplinary detentions, students and parents will be notified about the detention and reason for the detention and will arrange for a date to be served with parents. Detentions may only be assigned for the same day if a parent contact is made.
- Teachers will double the time for any detention not served on the assigned day. If there is a problem with the student serving on the assigned date, the student’s parent must contact the teacher and arrange a different time.
- If a student does not serve a detention that a teacher has doubled, an office discipline referral will be written and result in alternative discipline. If a student is absent from school on the assigned detention day, the detention is to be served on the first day upon returning to school.
Building administrators reserve the right to discipline for any disruption or action they deem inappropriate or unacceptable, even if the action is not specifically identified in this handbook. The following should not be interpreted as being the only offenses for which disciplinary actions may be taken. Any behavior not conducive to a healthy school environment will be dealt with at the administrator’s discretion. Student sent to the office for these types of offenses may receive immediate consequences. Some specific offenses are listed below.
These offenses are categorized by levels. The higher the level of the offense, the more severe the consequence for the behavior. Assigning behavioral levels and appropriate consequences is up to the discretion of the RMS administration. Student infractions are reviewed on a case by case basis based on relevant facts and careful consideration.
Minor Violations include but are not limited to:
- Running in the school building
- Eating, drinking, or leaving garbage in the building, other than in designated areas
- Dress and grooming violations (BOE Policy 7:160)
- Inappropriate use of electronic devices (BOE Policy 7:190)
- Inappropriate displays of affection
- Being in unauthorized parts of the building
- Failure to report to assigned schedule
- Failure to serve teacher assigned detention
Serious Violations or Misconduct include, but are not limited to:
- Disrespect/Defiance/Noncompliance/Insubordination of a staff member
- Failure to serve assigned office assigned discipline
- Pushing, shoving, or horseplay that could harm, or is harmful to another
- Lying/Cheating (including plagiarism)
- Inappropriate language
- Classroom disruption
Major Disturbances, Misconduct, and Safety Violations include, but are not limited to:
- Harassment/Bullying of other students or school personnel (including electronic and/or cyber bullying)
- Bullying is an act of contempt intended to cause harm.
- Sexual harassment includes unwelcome sexual advance, requests for sexual favors, or any conduct of a sexual nature.
- Harassment occurs when such conduct unreasonably interferes with an individual’s performance or creates an intimidating, hostile, or offensive academic environment.
- Threats or intimidation (written, verbal, including cyber-bullying)
- Assault, including hitting, slapping, kicking, punching, or fighting
- Over the counter medications and prescription medications
- Sale of smoking materials (e.g. tobacco products, e-cigarettes)
- Tobacco or matches/lighter possession. The Board of Education has reaffirmed the policies of maintaining Batavia Schools as a smoke-free environment. Infractions include smoking, using smokeless tobacco and the use or possession of smoking materials including cigarettes, chewing tobacco, pipe tobacco, matches, e-cigarettes, e-cigarette liquid, and/or a lighter.
The District may take other disciplinary action as necessary, including expulsion.
Gross Misconduct and Acts Which Endanger Others include, but are not limited to:
- Gang activity
- Assault, battery or hazing of school personnel
- Theft, extortion or vandalism
- Weapons violation
- Illegal substances violation
- Bomb threat or endangering act
Police authorities will be contacted.
Due Process Procedure
In disciplinary cases where a student is removed from school for a day or longer (out-of-school suspension), the district affords a due process appeal procedure. The student shall be informed of the charges and have the right to respond. Upon request of the parents or guardian, an appeal of the suspension may be made to the principal of the school. If the parents or guardian do not feel that a satisfactory resolution has occurred at the school building level, the parents or guardian may request a hearing at the district level. Upon receipt of this request, the School Board shall conduct a hearing or a hearing officer appointed by it to review the suspension. At the hearing, the parents or guardian of the student may appear and discuss the suspension with the Board or its hearing officer. If a hearing officer is appointed by the Board, he shall report to the Board a written summary of the evidence heard at the meeting. After its hearing or upon receipt of the report of the hearing officer, the Board may take such action as it finds appropriate.
A student whose presence poses a continuing danger to persons or property, or poses an ongoing threat or disruption to the academic process, may be immediately removed from school. In such cases, the requirements of due process proceeding will follow as soon as possible.
NOTE: The above procedures do not guarantee protection of privileges such as participating in extra-curricular activities, including athletics.