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3300 - Student Discipline Policy

Policy 3300


Student Discipline“Discipline” means any action taken by the school district in response to student behavioral violations. Discipline is not necessarily punitive, but can take positive and supportive forms. State public policy recognizes that a supportive response to behavioral violation is more effective and increases equitable educational opportunities for students. This policy and accompanying procedure are intended to address the following goals and objectives:

· Engage with families and the community and strive to understand and be responsive to cultural context;

· Support students in meeting behavioral expectations, including providing for early involvement of parents/guardians;

· Administer student discipline in ways that respond to the needs and strengths of students and that keep students in the classroom to the maximum extent possible;

· Provide educational services to students during suspension and expulsion;

· Facilitate collaboration between school personnel, students, and parents, and thereby supporting successful reentry into the classroom following a suspension or expulsion;

· Ensure fairness, equity, and due process in the administration of discipline;

· Provide every student with the opportunity to achieve personal and academic success;

· Provide a safe educational environment for all students and for district employees.

The Superintendent, or designee, shall establish and make available rules of student conduct, designed to provide students with a safe, healthy, and educationally sound environment. Students are expected to be aware of the district’s rules of student conduct, including behavior standards that respect the rights, person, and property of others. Students and staff are expected to work together to develop a positive climate for learning.

Minimizing Exclusion, Engaging with Families, and Supporting Students 

Unless a student’s presence poses an immediate and continuing danger to others or an immediate and continuing threat to the educational process, staff members must first attempt one or more forms of other forms of discipline to support students in meeting behavioral expectations before imposing classroom exclusion, short-term suspension, or in-school suspension. Before imposing a long-term suspension or expulsion, the district must first consider other forms of discipline.

These other forms of discipline may involve the use of best practices and strategies included in the state menu for behavior developed under RCW 28A.165.035. The accompanying procedure will identify a list of other forms of discipline for staff use. However, staff members are not restricted to that list and may use any other form of discipline compliant with WAC 392-400-025(9).

School personnel must make every reasonable attempt to involve parents and students to resolve behavioral violations. The district must ensure that associated notices, hearings, conferences, meetings, plans, proceedings, agreements, petitions, and decisions are in a language the student and parents understand; this may require language assistance. Language assistance includes oral and written communication and further includes assistance to understand written communication, even if parents cannot read any language.

The district’s use of suspension and expulsion will have a real and substantial relationship to the lawful maintenance and operation of the school district, including but not limited to, the preservation of the health and safety of students and employees and the preservation of an educational process that is conducive to learning.

As described in the procedures, the district will offer educational services to students during suspension or expulsion. When the district administers a long-term suspension or expulsion, the district will timely hold a reengagement meeting and collaborate with parents and students to develop a reengagement plan that is tailored to the student’s individual circumstances, in order to return the student to school successfully. Additionally, any student who has been suspended or expelled may apply for readmission at any time.

Staff Authority

District staff members are responsible for supervising students during the school day, during school activities, whether on or off campus, and on the school bus. Staff members will seek early involvement of parents/guardians in efforts to support students in meeting behavioral expectations. The Superintendent has general authority to administer discipline, including all exclusionary discipline. The Superintendent will identify other staff members to whom the Superintendent has designated disciplinary authority. After attempting at least one other form of discipline, teachers have statutory authority to impose classroom exclusion for behaviors that disrupt the educational process. Because perceptions of subjective behaviors vary and include implicit or unconscious bias, the accompanying procedures will seek to identify the types of behaviors for which the identified district staff may administer discipline.

Ensuring Fairness, Providing Notice, and an Opportunity for a Hearing

When administering discipline, the district will observe all of the student’s constitutional rights. The district will notify parents as soon as reasonably possible about classroom exclusion and before administering any suspension or expulsion. The district will provide opportunities for parent participation during an initial hearing with the student. The district will provide parents with written notice, consistent with WAC 392-400-455, of a suspension or expulsion no later than one school business day following the initial hearing. As stated above, language assistance includes oral and written communication and further includes assistance to understand written communication, even if parents cannot read any language. The district has established procedures for review and appeal of suspensions, expulsions, and emergency expulsions, consistent with WAC 392-400-430 through 392-400-530.

The district has also established procedures to address grievances of parents or students related to other forms of discipline, classroom exclusion, and exclusion from transportation or extra-curricular activity. The grievance procedures include an opportunity for the student to share his or her perspective and explanation regarding the behavioral violation.

Development and Review

Accurate and complete reporting of all disciplinary actions, including the behavioral violations that led to them, is essential for effective review of this policy; therefore, the district will ensure such reporting.

The district will periodically collect and review data on disciplinary actions taken against students in each school. The data will be disaggregated into subgroups as required by RCW 28A.300.042, including students who qualify for special education or Section 504. The data review will include classroom exclusion, in-school and short-term suspensions, and long-term suspensions and expulsions. The district will invite school personnel, students, parents, families, and the community to participate in the data review. The purpose of the data review is to determine if disproportionality exists; if disproportionality is found the district will take action to ensure that it is not the result of discrimination and may update this policy and procedure to improve fairness and equity regarding discipline.

Distribution of Policies and Procedures

The school district will make its discipline policies and procedures available to families and the community. The district will annually provide its discipline policies and procedures to all district personnel, students, and parents, which may require language assistance for students and parents with limited-English proficiency under Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. The school district will ensure district employees and contractors are knowledgeable of the discipline policies and procedures.


Cross References:      Policy  2161                Special Education and Related Services for Eligible Students
                                       Policy 2162                Education of Students with Disabilities under
                                                                            Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973
                                      Policy 3200                 Student Rights and Responsibilities
                                      Policy 3210                 Nondiscrimination

                                      Policy 3311                 Prohibition of Corporal Punishment
                                      Policy 4210                 Regulation of Dangerous Weapons on School Premises


Legal References:      RCW   9A.16.100       Use of force on children—Policy—Actions presumed unreasonable
                                      RCW   9.41.280          Possessing dangerous weapons on school facilities—Penalty—Exceptions
                                      RCW   28A.150.240   Certificated teaching and administrative staff as
                                                                            accountable for classroom teaching—Scope—Responsibilities—Penalty
                                     RCW   Ch. 28A.225     Compulsory school attendance and admission
                                     RCW   Ch. 28A.320     Provisions applicable to all districts
                                     RCW   28A.100.400    Principals and vice principals—Employment of—
                                    RCW   28A.400.110    Principal to assure appropriate student discipline-
                                                                           Building discipline standards—Classes to improve classroom management skills
                                    RCW   Ch. 28A.600     Students
                                    WAC   392-190-048    Access to course offerings—Student discipline
                                    WAC   Ch. 392-400     Pupils
                                    42 U.S.C. 2000d          Civil Rights Act of 1964
                                    34 CFR Part 100.3      Regulations implementing Civil Rights Act of 1964


Adoption Date:   August 27, 2019