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Sweetwater Un HSD |  BP  5144.1  Students

Suspension And Expulsion/Due Process   

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The Board of Trustees has established policies and standards of behavior in order to promote learning and protect the safety and well-being of all students. When these policies and standards are violated, it may be necessary to suspend or expel a student from regular classroom instruction.

(cf. 5144 - Discipline)

Suspended or expelled students shall be denied the privilege of participation in all extracurricular activities during the period of suspension or expulsion.

(cf. 6145 - Extracurricular and Cocurricular Activities)

Except where suspension for a first offense is warranted in accordance with law, suspension shall be imposed only when other means of correction fail to bring about proper conduct. (Education Code 48900.5)

Expulsion is an action taken by the Board for severe or prolonged breaches of discipline by a student. Except for single acts of a grave nature, expulsion shall be used only when there is a history of misconduct, when other forms of discipline, including suspension, have failed to bring about proper conduct, or when the student's presence causes a continuing danger to self or others.

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

Zero Tolerance

The Board supports a zero tolerance approach to serious offenses in accordance with state and federal law. This approach makes the removal of potentially dangerous students from the classroom a top priority and ensures the standardized treatment of all students. Staff shall immediately report to the Superintendent or designee any incidence of offenses specified in law, Board policy, and administrative regulation as cause for suspension or expulsion.

Student Due Process

The Board shall provide for the fair and equitable treatment of students facing suspension and expulsion by affording them their due process rights under the law. The Superintendent or designee shall comply with procedures for notices and appeals as specified in administrative regulation and/or law. (Education Code 48911, 48915, 48915.5)

(cf. 5119 - Students Expelled from Other Districts)

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

Supervised Suspension Classroom

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.

The Superintendent or designee shall establish a supervised classroom suspension program which meets the requirements of law for students suspended for any of the reasons enumerated in Education Code 48900 and 48900.2, who pose no imminent danger or threat at school, and for whom an expulsion action has not been initiated.

The Superintendent or designee shall examine alternatives to off-campus suspension and may establish a suspension program which involves progressive discipline during the school day on campus; use of conferences between staff, parents/guardians and students; detention; student study teams or other assessment-related teams; and/or referral to school support services staff. The use of such alternatives does not preclude off-campus suspensions.

Required Parental Attendance

The Board believes that parental involvement plays an important role in the resolution of classroom behavior problems. The Board expects that teachers will communicate with parents/guardians when behavior problems arise.

Whenever a student is suspended from class by a teacher because he/she committed an obscene act, engaged in habitual profanity or vulgarity, disrupted school activities, or otherwise willfully defied valid staff authority, the teacher of the class from which the student was removed may provide that the student's parent/guardian attend a portion of a school day in the class from which the student was suspended. (Education Code 48900.1)

Before requiring parental attendance, the teacher shall make reasonable efforts to have the parent/guardian visit the class voluntarily. The teacher also may inform the parent/guardian about available resources and parent education opportunities. Teachers should reserve the option of required parental attendance for cases in which they have determined that it is the best strategy to promote positive interaction between the student and the parent/guardian and to improve classroom behavior.

The teacher shall apply this policy uniformly to all students within the classroom. This policy shall apply only to a parent/guardian who lives with the student. (Education Code 48900.1)

When a teacher requires parental attendance, the principal shall send a written notice to the parent/guardian stating that his/her attendance is pursuant to law. (Education Code 48900.1)

The notice shall specify that the attendance may be on either the date the student is scheduled to return to class or within one week thereafter.

A parent/guardian who has received a written notice shall attend class as specified in the notice. After completing the classroom visit and before leaving school premises, the parent/guardian also shall meet with the principal or designee. (Education Code 48900.1)

The principal or designee shall contact a parent/guardian who does not respond to the request to attend school. The Board recognizes that parent/guardian compliance with this policy may be delayed, modified, or prevented for reasons such as serious illness/injury/disability, absence from town, or inability to get release time from work.

District regulations and school-site rules for student discipline shall include procedures for implementing parental attendance requirements. Parents/guardians shall be notified of this policy prior to its implementation. (Education Code 48900.1)

Decision Not to Enforce Expulsion Order

In cases where expulsion is mandatory pursuant to Education Code 48915(c), the enforcement of an expulsion order shall not be suspended by the Board. In all other cases of expulsion, the order for expulsion may be suspended by the Board, on case-by-case basis, pursuant to the requirements of law.

Readmission Date and Procedures

1. An expulsion order shall remain in effect until the Board orders the readmission of the student.

2. For an act other than those described in Education Code 48915(c), the Board shall set a date no later than the last day of the semester following the semester in which the expulsion occurred, when the student shall be reviewed for readmission to a school maintained by the district or to the school the student last attended.

3. For an act pursuant to Education Code 48915(c), a date of one year from the date the expulsion occurred shall be set for review for readmission to a school maintained by the district. An earlier date for readmission may be set on a case by case basis.

4. Procedures for filing, processing and reviewing requests for readmission of an expelled student, will be contained in the package of materials sent to the parent/guardian at the time the decision to expel has been rendered.

5. Placement of the student, following approval by the Board, shall be made in keeping with the original expulsion order, rehabilitation plan and conditions for readmission as determined by the office of Student Support Services.

Rehabilitation Plan

1. The Board, as recommended by the administrative hearing panel, shall recommend a plan of rehabilitation for the student at the time of the expulsion order, which may include, but not be limited to, periodic review as well as assessment at the time of review for readmission.

2. The rehabilitation plan may also include recommendations for improved or maintenance, of academic, citizenship and behavioral performance, tutoring, special education assessments, job training, counseling, employment, community service, or other rehabilitative programs.

Request for Readmission

Requests for readmission shall be submitted to the office of Student Support Services who shall review the file to determine whether the expelled student has met all the conditions required for readmission. The area Superintendent in charge of the office of Student Support Services shall make a recommendation to the governing board of the district on whether or not to readmit the expelled student based upon this review.

Denial of Readmission (Education Code 48916(d))

1. Upon finding that a student has not met the conditions of the rehabilitation plan or continues to pose a danger to campus safety or to other students or employees the board of trustees may deny the readmission of the student. This information will be provided to the parent/guardian and student at the time the expulsion order is entered.

2. If readmission of an expelled student is denied, the Board shall make a determination either to continue the placement of the student in the alternative program initially selected or to place the student in another program that is designed to accommodate students who exhibit discipline problems.

3. The Board, through the office of Student Support Services, shall provide written notice to the expelled student and his/her parent/guardian the reason(s) for denying readmission and which educational program the student is to attend.

4. The expelled student shall enroll in those educational programs unless the parent/guardian of the student elects to enroll the student in another school district or private school program.

Suspension of Expulsion Order

1. The Board, upon voting to expel a student, may suspend the enforcement of the expulsion order for a period of no more than one calendar year and may, as a condition of the suspension of enforcement, assign the student to a school or program that is deemed appropriate for the rehabilitation of the student.

2. The Board shall apply the criteria for suspending the enforcement of the expulsion order equally to all students, including individuals with exceptional needs as defined in Education Code 56026.

3. During the period of the suspension of the expulsion order, the student is deemed to be on probationary status. The Board may revoke the suspension of the expulsion order if the student commits any suspendable act or violates any of the district's rules and regulations governing student conduct. If this should occur, the student may be expelled under the terms of the original expulsion order.

4. Upon satisfactory completion of the rehabilitation plan and procedures for filing, processing and reviewing requests for reinstatement the board of trustees shall reinstate the student with placement to be determined by the office of Student Support Services. If the student has not met the conditions of the rehabilitation plan, readmission may be denied. The Board may also order the expungement of any or all records of the expulsion proceedings in cases of suspended expulsions.

5. A decision by the Board to suspend an expulsion order does not affect the time period and requirements for the filing of an appeal of the expulsion order with the county board of education pursuant to Education Code 48919. An appeal shall be filed within 30 days of the original vote of the Board.

Legal Reference:


212.5 Sexual harassment

1981 Enrollment of students in community school

17292.5 Program for expelled students

32261 Interagency School Safety Demonstration Act of 1985

35146 Closed sessions (re suspensions)

35291 Rules (for government and discipline of schools)

35291.5 Rules and procedures on school discipline

48660-48667 Community day schools

48900-48927 Suspension and expulsion

48950 Speech and other communication

49073-49079 Privacy of student records


47 Privileged communication

48.8 Defamation liability


1985-1997 Subpoenas; means of production


11455.20 Contempt

54950-54963 Ralph M. Brown Act


11014.5 Drug paraphernalia

11053-11058 Standards and schedules


230.7 Discharge or discrimination against employee for taking time off to appear in school on behalf of a child


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

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


729.6 Counseling


921 Definitions, firearm


7151 Gun free schools


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

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

Fremont Union High School District v. Santa Clara County Board (1991) 235 Cal. App. 3d 1182

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


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

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

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

Management Resources:



California Attorney General's Office:

California Department of Education:

U.S. Department of Education, Office of Safe and Drug-Free Schools:


adopted: November 17, 2008 Chula Vista, California

revised: February 23, 2009