Suspension Process

Once a decision is made to suspend a student, a parent or guardian is contacted, and a meeting is set up to include the student, parent or guardian, and appropriate staff. The meeting is held at the school site. Parents who are not able to come to school can participate in the meeting over the telephone.

In-class suspension by a teacher

Following an in-class suspension by a teacher, the teacher must immediately report the suspension to the principal or principal's designee, and send the student to him or her for appropriate action. The designee may be a vice-principal, counselor, teacher or other staff member. The teacher must also consult with the principal or principal's designee regarding a "due process" conference. The conference includes several key steps:

  1. As soon as possible, the teacher or principal/principal's designee shall ask the student's parent or guardian to attend a parent-teacher conference about the suspension. A school counselor or school psychologist attends the conference whenever possible. The principal/principal's designee may also attend at the request of the teacher or parent. It is important that up-to-date phone numbers and other information be provided to the school so parents can be quickly contacted.
  2. During the period of suspension, the suspended student will not return to the class without the permission of the teacher and principal/principal's designee, nor will they be placed in another regular class during this time. The principal/principal's designee will plan for the completion and distribution of regular suspension forms as necessary.
  3. A teacher may also refer a student at this time for consideration of suspension from school, or a "formal" suspension.

Suspension by Principal or Designee

A principal or designee may suspend a student from school for a maximum of five school days in a row for any single action considered reasons for suspension. This is known as a "formal" or "out of school suspension." The process includes several key steps:

  1. A suspension occurs after an informal conference, held by the principal/principal's designee between the student and, whenever possible, the school employee who referred the student. At this conference, which may be conducted over the phone or held at the school, the student will be informed of the reason for the disciplinary action and the evidence that lead to the action. The student must be given an opportunity to present his or her own evidence in defense.
  2. A student may be formally suspended without the informal conference only if it is determined that an emergency situation exists. This means a situation determined by the principal/principal's designee to create a clear and present danger to the lives, safety or health of students or staff. If a student is suspended without the informal conference, both the student and the parent or guardian will be notified of the student's right to a conference, and of the student's right to return to school for the purpose of a conference.
  3. The informal conference will be held within two school days, unless the student waives this right, or is physically unable to attend for any reason. The conference will then be held as soon as the student is physically able to return to school for the conference.
  4. When any student is recommended for suspension for any reason requiring police notification, a School Police officer may be brought in to investigate the situation and possibly detain the student.
  5. If, upon hearing the student's version of events and examining any evidence presented, the principal/principal's designee determines a suspension is not required, the student may be returned to his or her regular placement, or be referred to an alternative program.
  6. The teacher of any class from which a student is suspended may require that the student complete assignments and tests during the suspension period.

    Additionally, any parent or guardian may specifically request class assignments and tests during the suspension period.

Within one school day of the beginning of any suspension, suspensions must be entered in student's discipline history. Information about substance abuse intervention contracts is also included, if applicable. A "Report on Suspension" notice is also mailed to the parent or guardian. This includes information such as:

  1. A statement of facts leading to the decision to suspend the student.
  2. The date and time when the student will be allowed to return to school.
  3. Information about the rights of the student or parent to request an appeal of the suspension.
  4. Information about the rights of parents/guardians to have access to the student's records.
  5. A request that parent/guardian meet with school officials on or before the third consecutive day of a suspension at which time all matters related to suspension are discussed.
  6. A notice that state law requires parents/guardians to respond to these requests without delay.