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Alameda City USD  |  BP  5144.1  Students

Suspension And Expulsion/Due Process   

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The Governing Board desires to provide district students access to educational opportunities in a positive school environment that protects their safety and well-being and promotes their learning and development.

The Board does not support a zero tolerance approach to discipline. The Board recognizes the importance of providing school-wide positive supports, using discipline strategies and practices that keep students in school and in the classroom, and supporting students in learning to behave appropriately and solve conflicts in a peaceful way.

In response to serious or repeated violations of established policies and standards, it may be necessary to suspend or expel a student from regular classroom instruction.

(cf. 5131 - Conduct)

(cf. 5131.1 - Bus Conduct)

(cf. 5131.2 - Bullying)

Before subjecting a student to disciplinary sanctions that result in a loss of instructional time, the Superintendent or designee shall, to the extent allowed by law, first use alternative strategies as described in AR 5144 - Discipline. Except where suspension for a first offense is permitted by 48900.5, as further described in AR 5144.1, in-school and out-of-school suspension shall be imposed only when other means of correction fail to bring about proper conduct or the student's presence causes a danger to persons. (Education Code 48900.5) Expulsion is an action taken by the Board only for severe breaches of discipline by a student.

The grounds for suspension and expulsion and the procedures for considering, recommending, and/or implementing suspension and expulsion shall be only those specified in law, in this policy, and in the accompanying administrative regulation.

Except when otherwise permitted by law, a student may be suspended or expelled only when his/her behavior is related to a school activity or school attendance occurring within any district school or another school district, regardless of when it occurs, including, but not limited to, the following: (Education Code 48900(s))

1. While on school grounds

2. While going to or coming from school

3. During the lunch period, whether on or off the school campus

(cf. 5112.5 - Open/Closed Campus)

4. During, going to, or coming from a school-sponsored activity

District staff shall enforce the rules concerning suspension and expulsion of students fairly, consistently, equally, and in accordance with the district's nondiscrimination policies.

(cf. 0410 - Nondiscrimination in District Programs and Activities)

Appropriate Use of Suspension Authority

Except when a student's act violates Education Code 48900(a)-(e), as listed in items #1-5 under "Grounds for Suspension and Expulsion: Grades K-12" of the accompanying administrative regulation, or when his/her presence causes a danger to others, suspension shall be used only when other means of correction have failed to bring about proper conduct. (Education Code 48900.5, 48900.6)

(cf. 5138 - Conflict Resolution/Peer Mediation)

(cf. 5144 - Discipline)

(cf. 6142.4 - Service Learning/Community Service Classes)

(cf. 6164.2 - Guidance/Counseling Services)

(cf. 6164.5 - Student Success Teams)

A student's parents/guardians shall be notified as soon as possible when there is an escalating pattern of misbehavior that could lead to on-campus or off-campus suspension.

Effective July 1, 2019, no student enrolled in grades T-Kindergarten through twelve (TK-12) grades may be suspended or expelled for disrupting school activities or willfully defying the authority of school personnel. The Board will review data regarding suspensions for defiance in Grades 4 through 12 in August and January. If based on review of the data it appears further steps should be undertaken to meet the goal of eliminating suspensions for disruption and willful defiance by July 1, 2019, the Board will direct the Superintendent to implement such additional measures to achieve the goal of no suspensions for disruption and willful defiance by July 1, 2020.

The grounds for suspension and expulsion and the procedures for considering, recommending, and/or implementing suspension and expulsion shall be specified by administrative regulation and must be consistent with the requirements set forth here.

Students shall not be suspended or expelled for truancy, tardiness, or absenteeism from assigned school activities. Student may lose privileges or be placed on exclusion lists for extracurricular activities for poor attendance.

(cf. 5113 - Absences and Excuses)

(cf. 5113.1 - Chronic Absence and Truancy)

A teacher may suspend any pupil from class, for any of the acts enumerated in Section 48900, for the day of the suspension and the day following.

(cf. 48910 - Suspension by teacher; reports; conferences; referrals)

Authority to Expel

A student may be expelled only by the Board. (Education Code 48918(j))

As required by law, the Superintendent or principal shall recommend expulsion and the Board shall expel any student found to have committed any of the following "mandatory recommendation and mandatory expulsion" acts at school or at a school activity off school grounds: (Education Code 48915)

1. Possessing, as verified by a district employee, selling, or otherwise furnishing a firearm, unless the student had obtained prior written permission to possess the firearm from a certificated school employee, with the principal or designee's concurrence

Possession of an imitation firearm, as defined in Education Code 48900(m), shall not be regarded as an offense requiring a mandatory recommendation for expulsion and mandatory expulsion. However, an administrator shall have discretion on a case-by-case basis to recommend expulsion for the possession of an imitation firearm.

(cf. 5131.7 - Weapons and Dangerous Instruments)

2. Selling or otherwise furnishing a firearm

3. Brandishing a knife at another person

4. Unlawfully selling a controlled substance listed in Health and Safety Code 11053-11058

5. Committing or attempting to commit a sexual assault as defined in Penal Code 261, 266c, 286, 288, 288a, or 289, or committing a sexual battery as defined in Penal Code 243.4

6. Possessing an explosive as defined in 18 USC 921

For all other violations listed in the accompanying administrative regulation under "Grounds for Suspension and Expulsion: Grades K-12" and "Additional Grounds for Suspension and Expulsion: Grades 4-12," the Superintendent or principal shall have the discretion to recommend expulsion of a student. If expulsion is recommended, the Board shall order the student expelled only if it makes a finding of either or both of the following: (Education Code 48915(b) and (e))

1. That other means of correction are not feasible or have repeatedly failed to bring about proper conduct

2. That due to the nature of the violation the presence of the student causes a continuing danger to the physical safety of the student or others

A vote to expel a student (final action) shall be taken in an open session of a Board meeting. (Education Code 35146.) However, any consideration by the Board of disciplinary action against a student shall be conducted in closed session unless otherwise requested by the pupil and/or the pupil's guardian as specified in Education Code 35146 and 48912.

The Board may vote to suspend the enforcement of the expulsion order pursuant to the requirements of law and the accompanying administrative regulation. (Education Code 48917)

No student shall be expelled for disruption or willful defiance. (Education Code 48900)

No child enrolled in a preschool program shall be expelled except under limited circumstances as specified in AR 5148.3 - Preschool/Early Childhood Education.

(cf. 5148.3 - Preschool/Early Childhood Education)

Due Process

The Board shall provide for the fair and equitable treatment of students facing suspension and/or expulsion by affording them their due process rights under the law. The

Superintendent or designee shall comply with procedures for notices, hearings, and appeals as specified in law and administrative regulation. (Education Code 48911, 48915, 48915.5, 48918)

(cf. 5119 - Students Expelled from Other Districts)

(cf. 5144.2 - Suspension and Expulsion/Due Process (Students with Disabilities))

Expansion of Restorative Practices, Positive Behavior Intervention Supports, and other restorative and youth development approaches

The Board recognizes that the District has made progress toward creating a positive school culture through various means, including through the use of Restorative Practices and Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports. The Board believes that the continued expansion of such programs is central to the creation of safe, healthy, and supportive school environments for all students in the District. The Board supports and will prioritize funding for Restorative Practices and PBIS programs to successfully implement these practices at all school sites across the district.

On-Campus Suspension

On-campus suspension shall be imposed only when other means of correction have failed to bring about proper conduct. (Education Code 48900.5)

The Board recognizes that students who are suspended from school often have no supervision or guidance during the school hours when they are off campus and may fall behind in the coursework. The Board believes that, in many cases, it would be better to manage the student's behavior by keeping the student at school and providing him/her with supervision that is separated from the regular classroom.

To ensure the proper supervision and ongoing learning of students who are suspended for any of the reasons enumerated in Education Code 48900 and 48900.2, but who pose no imminent danger or threat to anyone at school and for whom expulsion proceedings have not been initiated, the Superintendent or designee shall establish a supervised suspension classroom program which meets the requirements of law.

Decision Not to Enforce Expulsion Order

On a case-by-case basis, the enforcement of an expulsion order may be suspended by the Board pursuant to the requirements of law and administrative regulation. (Education Code 48917)

Expungement of Student Disciplinary Records

As provided in Board Policy 5144.3, a student, parent, guardian, appointed advocate on behalf of the student, or Superintendent on behalf of a student may apply for expungement of student disciplines record which meet the criteria set forth in BP 5144.3.

Maintenance and Monitoring of Outcome Data

The Superintendent or designee shall maintain outcome data related to student suspensions and expulsions in accordance with Education Code 48900.8 and 48916.1, including, but not limited to, the number of students recommended for expulsion, the grounds for each recommended expulsion, the actions taken by the Board, the types of referral made after each expulsion, and the disposition of the students after the expulsion period. For any expulsion that involves the possession of a firearm, such data shall include the name of the school and the type of firearm involved, as required pursuant to 20 USC 7961. Suspension and expulsion data shall be reported to the Board annually and to the California Department of Education when so required.

In presenting the report to the Board, the Superintendent or designee shall disaggregate data on suspensions and expulsions by school and by numerically significant student subgroups, including, but not limited to, ethnic subgroups, socioeconomically disadvantaged students, English learners, students with disabilities, foster youth, and homeless students. Based on the data, the Board shall address any identified disparities in the imposition of student discipline and shall determine whether and how the district is meeting its goals for improving school climate as specified in its local control and accountability plan.

(cf. 0460 - Local Control and Accountability Plan)

Legal Reference:

EDUCATION CODE

212.5 Sexual harassment

233 Hate violence

1981-1981.5 Enrollment of students in community school

8239.1 Prohibition against expulsion of preschool student

17292.5 Program for expelled students

32261 Interagency School Safety Demonstration Act of 1985

35145 Open board meetings

35146 Closed sessions (regarding suspensions)

35291 Rules (for government and discipline of schools)

35291.5 Rules and procedures on school discipline

48645.5 Readmission; contact with juvenile justice system

48660-48666 Community day schools

48853.5 Foster youth

48900-48927 Suspension and expulsion

48950 Speech and other communication

48980 Parental notifications

49073-49079 Privacy of student records

52052 Numerically significant student subgroups

52060-52077 Local control and accountability plan

64000-64001 Consolidated application

CIVIL CODE

47 Privileged communication

48.8 Defamation liability

CODE OF CIVIL PROCEDURE

1985-1997 Subpoenas; means of production

GOVERNMENT CODE

11455.20 Contempt

54950-54963 Ralph M. Brown Act

HEALTH AND SAFETY CODE

11014.5 Drug paraphernalia

11053-11058 Standards and schedules

LABOR CODE

230.7 Employee time off to appear in school on behalf of a child

PENAL CODE

31 Principal of a crime, defined

240 Assault defined

241.2 Assault fines

242 Battery defined

243.2 Battery on school property

243.4 Sexual battery

245 Assault with deadly weapon

245.6 Hazing

261 Rape defined

266c Unlawful sexual intercourse

286 Sodomy defined

288 Lewd or lascivious acts with child under age 14

288a Oral copulation

289 Penetration of genital or anal openings

417.27 Laser pointers

422.55 Hate crime defined

422.6 Interference with exercise of civil rights

422.7 Aggravating factors for punishment

422.75 Enhanced penalties for hate crimes

626.2 Entry upon campus after written notice of suspension or dismissal without permission

626.9 Gun-Free School Zone Act of 1995

626.10 Dirks, daggers, knives, razors, or stun guns

868.5 Supporting person; attendance during testimony of witness

WELFARE AND INSTITUTIONS CODE

729.6 Counseling

UNITED STATES CODE, TITLE 18

921 Definitions, firearm

UNITED STATES CODE, TITLE 20

1415(K) Placement in alternative educational setting

7961 Gun-free schools

UNITED STATES CODE, TITLE 42

11432-11435 Education of homeless children and youths

COURT DECISIONS

T.H. v. San Diego Unified School District (2004) 122 Cal. App. 4th 1267

Woodbury v. Dempsey (2003) 108 Cal. App. 4th 421

Board of Education of Sacramento City Unified School District v. Sacramento County Board of Education and Kenneth H. (2001) 85 Cal.App.4th 1321

Fremont Union High School District v. Santa Clara County Board (1991) 235 Cal. App. 3d 118

Garcia v. Los Angeles Board of Education (1991) 123 Cal. App. 3d 807

John A. v. San Bernardino School District (1982) 33 Cal. 3d 301

ATTORNEY GENERAL OPINIONS

84 Ops.Cal.Atty.Gen. 146 (2001)

80 Ops.Cal.Atty.Gen. 348 (1997)

80 Ops.Cal.Atty.Gen. 91 (1997)

80 Ops.Cal.Atty.Gen. 85 (1997)

Management Resources:

U.S. DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION, OFFICE FOR CIVIL RIGHTS PUBLICATIONS

Dear Colleague Letter on the Nondiscriminatory Administration of School Discipline, January 2014

WEB SITES

CSBA: http://www.csba.org

California Attorney General's Office: http://www.oag.ca.gov

California Department of Education: http://www.cde.ca.gov

U.S. Department of Education, Office for Civil Rights: http://www.ed.gov/about/offices/list/ocr/docs/crdc-2012-data-summary.pdf

U.S. Department of Education, Office of Safe and Healthy Students: http://www2.ed.gov/about/offices/list/oese/oshs

Policy ALAMEDA UNIFIED SCHOOL DISTRICT

adopted: August 25, 2009 Alameda, California

revised: April 23, 2019