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Atascadero USD |  AR  5142  Students


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The principal of each school shall ensure that certificated employees, teacher aides or yard aides supervise the conduct and safety, and direct the play, of students of the school who are on school grounds before and after school, during recess, and during other intermissions.

Teachers shall be present at their respective rooms and open them to admit students not less than 30 minutes before the time when school starts, or as specified in the collective bargaining agreement.

Safety rules for the use of facilities and equipment shall include as appropriate:

1. Rules on acceptable playground behavior and on the proper use of play apparatus in elementary schools.

2. Rules relating to gymnasium and field areas in high schools.

3. Safety rules clearly posted in chemistry classes.

4. Shop class rules, including the requirement that power equipment never be used without the teacher's presence in the shop. Students must pass safety tests at mastery level before using such equipment, and test results must be kept on record.

School staff shall train students on the above rules and include safety instruction in their lesson plans when appropriate. Copies of the rules shall be sent to parents/guardians and be readily available at the school at all times.

The principal or designee shall:

1. Clearly identify supervision zones on the playground and require that supervisors remain outside at a location from which they can observe their entire zone of supervision.

2. Require that all individuals supervising students remain alert in spotting dangerous conditions and report any such conditions to the principal or designee promptly and in writing.

3. Establish emergency procedures that ensure swift response to accidents, fighting, and situations that could become dangerous, such as overcrowding or unusual gatherings of students.

The Superintendent or designee shall ensure that teachers, teacher aides, yard aides and volunteers who supervise students receive training in the above safety practices and in supervisory techniques which will help them to forestall problems and resolve conflicts.

When determining the ratio of playground supervisors to students, the Superintendent or designee shall consider the size of the playground area, the number of blind spots that are not immediately visible, the age and gender of the students, and the general nature of their behavior.

Release of Student to Adult

Students shall be released during the school day in the custody of an adult only if:

1. The adult is the student's parent/legal guardian.

(cf. 5021 - Noncustodial Parents)

2. The adult has appropriate identification and the verified authorization of the student's parent/legal guardian.

3. The adult is a properly authorized law officer acting in accordance with law.

(cf. 5145.11 - Questioning and Apprehension)

4. The adult is taking the student to emergency medical care, at the request of the principal or designee.

(cf. 5141.4 - Child Abuse Reporting Procedures)

Eye Protection Devices

The District shall provide eye protection devices in accordance with law.

Staff shall ensure that all students, teachers and visitors wear eye protective devices when they are engaged in or observing an activity or using hazardous substances likely to cause injury to the eyes. (Education Code 32030, 32031)

The Board shall provide a first pair of the eye safety devices required by law at District expense. If these devices are lost or damaged, students and teachers may obtain replacements for an amount not exceeding their actual cost to the District.

Missing Children

In order to enable District staff to assist in locating missing children, the Superintendent or designee shall ensure that Department of Justice information on missing children is posted at every school. In schools maintaining elementary grades, this information shall be posted in areas restricted to adult use. (Education Code 38139)

Elementary school principals are urged to review missing children's pictures whenever a new student enrolls or transfers into the school. (Education Code 49068.5)

Laboratory Safety

The principal of each school offering laboratory work to students shall designate a trained certificated employee as "building laboratory consultant" responsible for reviewing, updating and carrying out the school's procedures for laboratory safety.

Playground Design, Equipment and Maintenance

Teachers, teacher aides, maintenance staff, parents/guardians and students are encouraged to contribute their ideas for making the playground as safe as possible.

Playgrounds should be designed for ease of supervision and should have:

1. Clearly defined entry and exit routes that lead to and from play areas without crossing other major activities

2. Fences or other barriers limiting vehicle access to play areas

3. Proper water drainage

4. Bicycle racks that are fenced and located where easily visible

5. Safety rules posted at the entrance and near play equipment

Playgrounds shall provide access for the handicapped in accordance with law.

The age, size and ability of the students who will use playground equipment shall determine the choice of equipment, the height of platforms and slides, and the diameter of climbing bars. Par courses and other adult equipment that is inappropriate for student use shall not be placed at elementary schools.

Playground equipment shall be installed by the manufacturer, by the manufacturer's representative, or by District maintenance staff under the direct supervision of the manufacturer's representative. A signed statement shall be secured from the manufacturer's representative stating that the equipment has been properly installed in accordance with the manufacturer's specifications.

The following guidelines shall be observed when playground equipment is installed:

1. Concrete footings shall be kept from six to 12 inches below finished grade.

2. Appropriate cushioning material shall be installed under the equipment before it is used.

a. Except for tetherball poles and basketball standards, playground equipment shall not be installed over blacktop.

b. Cushioning material shall be placed in all areas where a student might fall when using the equipment.

c. Cushioning material shall be maintained at the depth recommended by the manufacturer, always at least eight inches.

d. Cushioning material shall be resupplied on a regular basis to ensure adequate depth at all times, including vacation breaks.

3. The equipment and its cushioning border shall be set back at least eight feet from other equipment. Swings shall be set back at least two times the crossbar height, both front and back.

4. Ball boards over six feet high shall be approved by the Office of the State Architect. (24 CCR 4-314)

Maintenance staff shall:

1. Rake cushioning material daily and remove foreign objects.

2. Regularly clean cushioning material from areas surrounding the cushioned area so as to minimize slipping.

3. Regularly inspect playground equipment and fences to ensure that all parts are in good condition.

a. Check wooden structures for holes, cracks, splinters, and possible rot at ground level.

b. Look for protruding nails or sharp edges and repair as needed.


approved: October 5, 1999 Atascadero, California