• Student Rights and Responsibilities Handbook


  • Welcome

    Dear Students, Parents and Guardians,

    Prince George’s County Public Schools serves over 124,000 students. The school system offers broad and varied academic programs to ensure every student excels under the guidance of talented, caring and committed staff members. From preschoolers learning the alphabet to high school seniors taking Advanced Placement courses and awaiting college acceptance, and for every grade in between, Prince George’s County Public Schools is committed to serving the academic needs of each and every student. We are equally committed to preparing our students to be college and/or career ready upon graduation.

    Students, make a decision to give 100% in class every day and be guided by respect, responsibility, reliability, honesty and integrity. These principles are the foundation for students’ success in Prince George’s County Public Schools.

    As your child’s first teacher and our partner in education, we encourage parents and guardians to continue an active role in their child’s academics by visiting the school on a regular basis, supporting our teachers’ educational process, participating with the Parent-Teacher Association (PTA) and volunteering in a classroom or within the school. Your consistent support and active involvement increases your child’s academic experience and allows you to celebrate each and every success your child achieves in Prince George’s County Public Schools.

    To ensure students continue to learn in a safe and supportive environment, we have developed the Student Rights and Responsibilities Handbook. This handbook is designed to outline the expectations for students and parents/ guardians, as well as the procedures to teach students decision-making and problem-solving skills, along with consistently applying rules, expectations and discipline in our schools.

    Please review the contents of this handbook with your child and make sure they are aware of the opportunities and their rights and responsibilities as a member of the Prince George’s County Public Schools’ community.

    With the support of students, parents and guardians – along with the continued dedication of teachers and staff – PGCPS will continue to soar and reach great heights for student success.

    Together we will have a great year!

    Kevin M. Maxwell, Ph.D.
    Chief Executive Officer
    Prince George’s County Public Schools

    Back to Top >>



    SECTION 1: Introduction, Goals, College and Career Ready, Resources

    Introduction

    Under the esteemed leadership of the Board of Education, PGCPS is committed to graduating all students to be college and/or career ready. This is achieved through fostering positive, nurturing and engaging learning environments.

    We aim to equip our students with the knowledge, skills and resources to compete on a global level. We are also committed to maintaining a safe school environment for students and teachers.

    Good discipline is essential to academic success; however, good discipline is not something that just happens. Discipline – like mathematics and reading – must be taught. We believe that it is possible to maintain disciplined, productive learning environments without excluding students from school except in the most severe instances. Four words provide the recipe for discipline in PGCPS: Prevention, Intervention and Progressive Discipline. Utilizing a common sense, age-appropriate,
    5-level discipline approach, school environments will thrive. As discipline improves, academic performance improves.

    This handbook provides a framework for academic standards and positive student behavior. The contents promote positive, supportive and inclusive learning environments that maximize students’ academic achievement and minimize students’ behavior issues. It explains the expectations, rights and responsibilities
    of all members of the school community. The handbook creates a structure where students, parents and teachers forge education partnerships and relationships critical to students’ success.

    Application of the Handbook/Code of Student Conduct

    This handbook and its contents are in effect during regularly scheduled school
    hours, as well as at other times and places, including school sponsored events, field trips and athletic functions where school administrators have authority over students or the behavior has a direct effect on the order of the school.

    College and Career Ready

    The College and Career Ready Program oversees all the programs and student opportunities for students that support their readiness for successful entry into a college and/or a career. This web page at www1.pgcps.org/collegecareer is designed to help students and parents (and staff as well) navigate through the wealth of in- formation about getting prepared for college. It includes information on our district programs and opportunities for students as well as the regional and national infor- mation sites that will give all our students what they need to know to be successful!

    Content includes:

    • Graduation Requirements
    • Academic Support
    • Specialty Programs
    • NCAA Academic Eligibility Standards
    • Testing
    • Homework Help Sites
    • Careers 
    • Test Prep – SAT/PSAT/ACT/AP
    • Colleges

    Scholarships Database

    PGCPS is committed to preparing students for college and the world of work. The scholarship link on the student section at pgcps.org provides a database of regional, state and national scholarships from a variety of public and private sources. Dead- lines and application requirements are included for each scholarship. Information regarding internships, career and summer opportunities is also available. 

    Resources for Students and Families

    SchoolMax Family Portal

    PGCPS uses the SchoolMax Student Information System to manage student data.
    The Family Portal allows students and parents/guardians to log in from any com- puter and view information, including attendance records, assignments, grades and discipline records.

    To sign in to SchoolMax:
    Visit www.pgcps.org/parents/ and click on “SchoolMax Family Portal” on the left.

    School Closings Information

    e-Alerts: Sign up for emergency notifications by email or text by visiting the home page and clicking on the “E-ALERTS” button.
    Home page: www.pgcps.org
    PGCPS Twitter: http://twitter.com/pgcps PGCPS Facebook: www.facebook.com/pgcps School Status Line: 301-952-6000, option 1
    PGCTV (96 Comcast and 38 Verizon)

    FREQUENTLY CALLED PGCPS NUMBERS

    Area 1 Office............................. 301-669-6010
    Area 2 Office............................. 301-669-6063
    Area 3 Office............................. 301-669-6000
    Board of Education Office ......... 301-952-6115
    Early Childhood Programs ........ 301-808-2707
    EEO Advisor .............................. 240-573-7049
    ESOL Office ............................... 301-445-8450
    Family & Community Outreach ... 301-618-7356
    Fingerprinting .......................... 301-952-6775
    Food & Nutrition Services ......... 301-952-6580
    GED (Adult Education) .............. 301-322-0891
    Head Start ................................ 301-408-7100
    Health Services ........................ 301-749-4722
    Home & Hospital Teaching ....... 301-567-8642
    Homeless Education ................. 301-925-2482
    International School Counseling .. 301-445-8460
    Neediest Kids Program ............. 301-780-5910
    Pupil Accounting &
    School Boundaries ................... 301-952-6300
    Pupil Personnel Services........... 301-780-5910
    Section 504 .............................. 301-952-6255
    Special Education ..................... 301-618-8300
    Student Appeals....................... 301-952-6195
    Student Records & Transfers....... 301-567-8751
    Student Service-Learning ........ 301-808-5956
    Transportation ......................... 301-952-6570

    COMMUNITY RESOURCES

    Community Crisis Hotline
    1-800-422-0009
    Department of Social Services
    301-909-7000
    Emergency Financial Assistance
    301-909-6000
    Emergency Food Assistance
    301-909-6343
    Gang Reference Card (warning signs)
    & Addressing Gang Crime
    1-800-421-9779
    Health Department
    301-583-5920
    Homeless Hotline
    1-888-731-0999
    Suicide Hotline
    301-864-7130



    Back to Top >>



    SECTION 2: Rights & Responsibilities

    PGCPS respects the rights of all individuals to be treated equally and fairly to ensure that no individual is discriminated against based on race, color, sex, age, national origin, religion, sexual orientation, or disability in the areas of freedom of expression, procedural and due process, personal rights and access to school programs. If you have questions about non-discrimination policies, please use the following contact information:

    Non-discrimination policies for students with disabilities under Section 504:
    Natasha Jones, Section 504 Coordinator
    7711 Livingston Road
    Oxon Hill, MD 20745
    301-952-6255

    For non-discrimination policies based on gender, race, religion, sexual orientation, and disability: Amana Simmons, Esq., EEO Advisor
    14201 School Lane, Room 210
    Upper Marlboro, MD 20772
    240-573-7049

    Student Rights & Responsibilities

    STUDENT RIGHTS

    • A free public education subject to provisions of state law and the bylaws, rules and regulations of the Maryland State Board of Education and the Board of Education of Prince George’s County.
    • An education in a learning environment that is safe, drug-free and conducive to learning where high standards are stressed.
    • Enjoy meaningful freedom of speech, press, assembly and religion.
    • Due process for academic, attendance and disciplinary measures, as well as other issues which could impact the student’s ability to receive a free and appropriate education.
    • Inspect, review and seek to amend educational records.
    • Access to prevention and intervention programs.

    STUDENT RESPONSIBILITIES

    • Maintain a safe and orderly school environment conducive to teaching and learning.
    • Know and obey all county and school rules and regulations relating to student conduct and achievement.
    • Come to school on time and ready to learn each day.
    • Present the school with a parent/ guardian note for absences and tardiness.
    • Work to your fullest potential in all academic and extracurricular activities.
    • Respect school authority, which includes not only obeying school rules and regulations, but also conforming to the laws of the community, state and nation.
    • Obey all instructions from all school employees in a positive and respectful manner.
    • Dress in accordance with the dress code for school and school functions.
    • Utilize school resources to develop appropriate problem solving skills.
    • Ask questions to ensure understanding.
    • Accept responsibility for actions.
    • Maintain and uphold the highest standards of conduct, demeanor and sportsmanship during extracurricular events.
    • Show respect and consideration for the personal and property rights of others and understand the need for cooperation with all members of the school community.
    • Bring to school only those items and materials which are appropriate for the instructional program.

    Parent Rights & Responsibilities

    PARENT RIGHTS

    • Visit schools and classes at times that respect the educational environment.
    • Be treated with courtesy by all members of the school staff.
    • Be informed of all services in special education.
    • Organize and participate in organizations for parents.
    • Be informed of academic requirements of any school program.
    • Request a conference to (1) inspect their child’s cumulative record or (2) make corrections in conformity with Administrative Procedure 5125 and current state and federal government guidelines. Participate in meaningful parent-teacher conferences to discuss their child’s school progress and welfare.
    • Be informed of approved procedures for seeking changes in school policies and for appealing administrative procedures.
    • Expect reasonable protection for their child from physical harm while under school authority.
    • Inspect, review and seek to amend
    • educational and disciplinary records.
    • Be informed of school policies and administrative decisions.

    PARENT RESPONSIBILITIES

    • Provide proof of a bona fide residence in Prince George’s County.
    • Provide required immunizations documents to the school system.
    • During kindergarten or first grade registration, provide the school system with proof of the child’s age.
    • Notify the school whenever child is absent.*
    • Ensure child (5-16 years old) attends school regularly. **
    • Assume primary responsibility for the discipline of the child.
    • Model cooperation with school and transportation personnel.
    • Respond to school personnel requests for information and meetings.

    Teacher/Staff Member Responsibilities

    • Be prepared to teach and provide quality instruction within the current curricular framework.
    • Exhibit an attitude of respect for students that has a positive influence in helping them develop good citizenship traits.
    • Remain knowledgeable about school policies and rules, and enforce them in a fair, impartial and consistent manner for all students.
    • Communicate information regarding student progress and achievement on a regular and timely basis to students, parents and other involved professionals.
    • Maintain an atmosphere that contributes to positive student behavior.
    • Provide daily classwork and assignments for students with lawful absences, including those students on suspension.
    • Develop and maintain a positive working relationship with students and staff.
    • Strive to improve the quality of life throughout the school community.
    • Maintain an environment of mutual respect and dignity.
    • Encourage the use of appropriate counseling services.
    • Report bullying, harassment or intimidation
    • Communicate policies and expectations to students and parents, including: course objectives and requirements, grading procedures, assignment deadlines and classroom discipline plans.
    • Mandated reporter of suspected child abuse and/or neglect to Child Protective Services.
    • Elevate reports of bullying, harassment or intimidation to the school administrator for investigation and resolution.

    School Administrator Responsibilities

    • Support teaching and learning by creating and maintaining a safe and orderly environment.
    • Promote communication with all stakeholders and present opportunities for students, staff and parents to address grievances.
    • Enforce the Student Rights and Responsibilities Handbook and ensure the fair, consistent and prompt resolution of concerns and infractions.
    • Evaluate instructional programs regularly and comprehensively.
    • Support the development of and participation in appropriate extracurricular activities by students.
    • Mandated reporter of suspected child abuse and/or neglect to Child Protective Services.
    • Process reports of bullying, harassment or intimidation.

    *COMAR 13A.08.01, Administrative Procedure 5113: 2015-2018
    **Comply with compulsory attendance law for their child (Annotated Code of Maryland Article, Section 7-301), Administrative Procedure 5113: 2015-2016 – 5-17 years old, 2016-17 – 5-18 years old

    Back to Top >>



    SECTION 3: Annual Notification of Rights Under FERPA

    The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) provides parents and students who are 18 years of age or older (“eligible students”) certain rights with respect tothe student’s education records. These rights are: 

    1. The right to inspect and review the student’s education records within 45 days after the day PGCPS receives a request for access. In accordance with Administrative Procedure 5125 and 5134, parents or eligible students should submit to the school principal a written request that identifies the records they wish to inspect. The school principal will make arrangements for access and notify the parent or eligible student of the time and place where the records may be inspected.
    2. The right to request the amendment of the student’s education records that the parent or eligible student believes are inaccurate, misleading, or otherwise in violation of the student’s privacy rights under FERPA.
      Parents or eligible students who wish to ask a PGCPS school to amend a record should write the school principal, clearly identify the part of the record they want changed, and specify why it should be changed. If the school decides not to amend the record as requested by the parent or eligible student, the school will notify the parent or eligible student of the decision and of their right to a hearing regarding the request for amendment. Additional information regarding the hearing procedures will be provided to the parent or eligible student when notified of the right to a hearing.
    3. The right to provide written consent before the school discloses personally identifiable information (PII) from the student’s education records, except to the extent that FERPA authorizes disclosure without consent. Please see the information under #5 below for exceptions to the prior written con- sent rule.
    4. The right to file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education concerning alleged failures by a PGCPS school to comply with the requirements of FERPA. The name and address of the Office that administers FERPA are:

      Family Policy Compliance Office
      U.S. Department of Education
      400 Maryland Avenue, SW Washington, DC 20202
    5. FERPA permits the disclosure of PII from students’ education records, without consent of the parent or eligible student, if the disclosure meets certain conditions found in §99.31 of the FERPA regula- tions, including disclosures:
      • To other school officials, including teachers, within PGCPS whom the school has determined to have legitimate educational interests. This includes contractors, consultants, volunteers, or other parties to whom the school has outsourced institutional services or functions. A school official has a legitimate educational interest if the official needs to review an education record in order to fulfill his or her professional responsibility.
      • To officials of another school district in which a student seeks or intends to enroll, or is already enrolled if the disclosure is requested for purposes of the student’s enrollment or transfer.
      • To certain authorized representatives of federal or State government.
      • To organizations conducting studies for, or on behalf of, the school, in order to: (a) develop, validate, or administer predictive tests; (b) administer student aid programs; or (c) improve instruction.
      • To parents of an eligible student if the student is a dependent for IRS tax purposes.
      • To comply with a judicial order or lawfully issued subpoena.
      • To appropriate officials in connection with a health or safety emergency.
      • The school has designated as “directory information” and listed under #6 below.
    6. The right to “opt out” of allowing PGCPS to disclose directory information without prior written consent. PGCPS has designated the following information as directory information:
      • Student’s name
      • Address
      • Telephone listing
      • Participation in officially recognized activities and sports
      • The most recent school attended
      • Dates of attendance
      • Grade level
      • Honors and awards received
      • Student ID number, user ID, or other unique personal that cannot be used to access education records without a PIN, password, etc. (Note: A student’s social security number, in whole or in part, cannot be used for this purpose.

        If a parent does not want PGCPS to disclose directory information from a child’s education records without prior written consent, the parent must notify the school principal/designee in writing within five (5) business days of receiving the annual notification.

        The parent’s opt out shall be honored for one school year. The parent must re- submit the opt-out notice upon receipt of the annual notification in subsequent school years.

    Back to Top >>



    SECTION 4: Graduation Requirements

    Graduation Requirements for Class of 2009 through 2017

    Effective with the Graduating Classes of 2009 through 2017 (entering freshman in Fall 2013), the graduation requirements to earn a Maryland High School diploma are: 


    Subject Area

     Specific Credit Requirements

    English

    4 credits

    Mathematics

    3 credits

    √ 1 in Algebra 1 or Algebra 1 Common Core

    √ 1 in Geometry or Geometry Common Core

    √ 1 additional mathematics credit

    Science

    3 credits

    √ 1 in Biology

    √ 2 additional credits that must include laboratory experience in any or all of the following areas: earth science, life science, physical science

    Social Studies

    3 credits

    √ 1 in U.S. History

    √ 1 in Local, State, and National Government

    √ 1 in World History

    High School Assessment (HSA) Requirements
    • Algebra/Data Analysis, English 10, and Biology: Students who entered grade 9 in the fall of 2005 and later (COMAR 13A.03.02.09) must obtain either a passing score on Algebra/Data Analysis, English 10, and Biology or obtain an overall combined score of 1208 or 1602 (see below). Students who meet specific criteria may use the Bridge Plan for Academic Validation to meet the passing requirement. See questions 20 and 21 (pages 10-11) in the High School Graduation Requirements Questions and Answers (http://hsaexam.org/img/HS_ Grad_Q_A.pdf) for information about the Bridge Plan option.
    • Government: Students entering 9th grade in the 2012-13, 2011- 12, 2010-11, or 2009-2010 school years do not need to pass the Government HSA for graduation, but may use it if they pursue a combined score to satisfy this requirement. These students have two options:
      • Students MAY achieve a combined score of 1602 for English, Algebra/Data Analysis, Biology, and Government.OR
      • Students MAY achieve a combined score of 1208 for English, Algebra/Data Analysis, and Biology
      • Students entering 9th grade in school year 2013-14 and beyond MUST either pass the Government HSA or include the Government HSA score to meet a combined score of 1602.
       
     

    Other Requirements

    Fine Arts

    1 credit

    Physical Education

    .50 credit √ Your Personal Fitness

    Health Education

    .50 credit √ Health Issues

    Technology Education

    1 credit  √ Foundations of Technology

    Completer** and Electives

    2 credits of either World Language or American Sign Language (both credits must be in the same language per local requirements) and 3 credits in electives

    OR

    2 credits of Advanced Technology Education and 3 credits in electives

    OR

    Complete (4–9 credits) a Maryland State Department of Education (MSDE)-Approved sequence of courses

    and any remaining credits in electives

    Credits: Twenty-one (21) credits are required. Per COMAR 13A.03.02.01C, PGCPS has notified the Maryland State Department of Education (MSDE) that four (4) credits must be earned after completion of Grade 11.

    Enrollment: The student shall satisfactorily complete four years of approved study beyond the 8th grade unless on an approved option.

    Student Service-Learning: The student shall complete a locally-developed, state-approved program that includes service learning infusion in designated courses, preparation, reflection and a specified number of hours of independent service..

    **Completer refers to a specified sequence of courses required for completing graduation requirements.

    Graduation Requirements for Class of 2018 and beyond 

    Effective with the Graduating Class of 2018 (entering freshman in Fall 2014), graduation requirements to earn a Maryland High School diploma are as follows:

    Credit Requirements 

    Subject AreaCredits Required

    English

    4 credits

    Mathematics

    4 credits

    √ 1 in Algebra 1 Common Core

    √ 1 in Geometry Common Core

    √ 1 in Algebra 2 Common Core

    √ 1 additional mathematics credit

    Science

    3 credits

    √ 1 in Biology

    √ 2 additional credits that must include laboratory experience in any or all of the following areas: earth science, life science, physical science

     Social Studies

    3 credits

    √ 1 in U.S. History

    √ 1 in Local, State, and National Government

    √ 1 in World History

    Asssessment Requirements

    School Year 2014-2015 - Grade 9 

    • PARCC English 9
    • PARCC Algebra 1 HSA Biology
    • HSA Government

    School Year 2015-2016 - Grade 10

    • PARCC Algebra 1 or PARCC Geometry or PARCC Algebra 2 PARCC English 10
    • HSA Biology HSA Government
    • Retake opportunities for HSAs/PARCC

    School Year 2016-2017 - Grade 11

    • PARCC Algebra 1 or PARCC Geometry or PARCC Algebra 2 PARCC English 11*
    • HSA Biology HSA Government
    • Retake opportunities for HSAs/PARCC

    *College and Career Ready Determination

    School Year 2017-2018 - Grade 12

    • PARCC Algebra 1 or PARCC Geometry or PARCC Algebra 2 HSA Biology
    • HSA Government
    • Retake opportunities for HSAs/PARCC
    • Transition courses if a student is not college and career ready
     

     Other Requirements

    Fine Arts

    1 credit

    Physical Education

    .50 credit √ Your Personal Fitness

    Health Education

    .50 credit √ Health Issues

    Technology Education

    1 credit  √ Foundations of Technology

    Completer** and Electives

    2 credits of either World Language or American Sign Language (both credits must be in the same language per local requirements) and 2 credits in electives

    OR

    2 credits of Advanced Technology Education and 2 credits in electives

    OR

    Complete (4–9 credits) a Maryland State Department of Education (MSDE)-Approved sequence of courses

    Credits: Twenty-one (21) credits are required. Per COMAR 13A.03.02.01C, PGCPS has notified the Maryland State Department of Education (MSDE) that four (4) credits must be earned after completion of Grade 11.

    Enrollment: The student shall satisfactorily complete four years of approved study beyond the 8th grade unless on an approved option.

    Student Service-Learning: The student shall complete a locally-developed, state-approved program that includes service learning infusion in designated courses, preparation, reflection and a specified number of hours of independent service.

    **Completer refers to a specified sequence of courses required for completing graduation requirements


    Student Service-Learning  

    Student Service-Learning is a learning experience for students in grades 6 -12 that combines meaningful service to the community with curriculum-based learning.

    Students improve their academic skills by applying what they learn in school to the real world; they then reflect on their experience to reinforce the link between their service and their learning.

    Only approved activities may qualify for service-learning credit. Students must complete the student verification form to receive credit.

    Talk to your child’s Professional School Counselor or the school-based Service-Learning Coordinator assigned to the school.

    Student Service-Learning Hours are a graduation requirement. Students must earn a minimum of 75 service-learning hours. However, 51 of the hours are included in the school’s social studies and science curriculum. Therefore, 24 hours must be earned with an appropriate non- profit organization.

      Assessment Requirements

      2014-2015: Grade 9 - PARCC English 9; PARCC Algebra 1; HSA Biology; HSA Government

      2015-2016: Grade 10 -  PARCC English 10; PARCC Algebra 1, Geometry, or Algebra 2; HSA Biology; HSA Government

      2016-2017: Grade 11 - PARCC English 11*; PARCC Algebra 1, Geometry, or Algebra 2; HSA Biology; HSA Government. *College and Career Ready Determination

      2017-2018: Grade 12 PARCC Algebra 1, Geometry, or Algebra 2, HSA Government, Transition courses if student is not college and career ready

      Back to Top >>



      SECTION 5: Student Attendance

      Student Attendance Policy

      School achievement begins with regular attendance. Parents/guardians must ensure that all school-age children in their care are in school on time daily. Additionally, school personnel must communicate any attendance problems or concerns to parents/guardians in a timely manner. Parents are required to send a signed written note with reason for absence. If the absence is excused, the student will receive missed classwork and assignments. Documentation may be requested for absences of three or more consecutive days.

      Students Reporting Late to School

      It is imperative for students to be on time at the beginning of the school day. The official school attendance documentation is recorded during this time. Schools are required to admit students to school regardless of the time they arrive. (However, students who arrive late to school must report first to the appropriate administrative office to obtain a late pass before being admitted to any classroom or other area of the school). This pass must be shown to all of the student’s teachers as the student reports to each class during the day, as well as to teachers of any missed classes during the next school day. If the student does not obtain and show the pass to all teachers, the tardy will be UNEXCUSED.

      Additionally, for the tardiness to be excused, students are required to bring a note from the parent/guardian explaining the reason for the tardiness.

      Lawful Absence

      Absence from school, including absence for any portion of the day, shall be considered lawful only for the following reasons:

      • Illness of the student. The principal shall require a physician’s certificate from the parent/guardian of a student reported continuously absent for illness.
      • Hazardous weather conditions that would endanger the health or safety of the student.
      • Work approved or sponsored by the school, the local school system, or the State Department of Education, accepted by the Chief Executive Officer or the school principal, or their designees, as reason for excusing the student.
      • Death in the immediate family
      • Observance of a religious holiday
      • Lack of authorized transportation (This shall not include students denied authorized transportation for disciplinary reasons.)
      • Other emergency or set of circumstances approved by the Chief Executive Officer or his designee
      • State of emergency
      • Suspension
      • Court Summons
      • Health Exclusion

      Unlawful Absence/ Truancy

      Unlawful absence is defined as the act of a student being absent from school for a day or any portion of a day from an individual class for any reason other than those defined as lawful. Teachers are not required to provide make-up work for students when absences are unlawful. Truancy is defined as unlawfully absent for 8 days or more in a quarter, 15 days in a semester, or 20 days in a school year.

      POSSIBLE RESPONSES FOR PARENTS/GUARDIANS FOR UNLAWFUL ABSENCES OF STUDENTS

      By law, parents/guardians must ensure regular attendance for their school-aged children who are enrolled in the public schools. If a child has excessive unexcused absences, the parent/ guardian may be convicted of a misdemeanor and imprisoned or fined by the courts. Additionally, any other adult who persuades or attempts to persuade a student to be unlawfully absent, or who harbors a child who is unlawfully absent, may also be convicted of a misdemeanor and imprisoned and/or fined.

      POSSIBLE RESPONSES FOR STUDENTS WHO REGULARLY MISS SCHOOL

      • Denial of opportunity to make-up class/homework assignments, tests and/or quizzes (for unlawful absences).
      • Referral to Pupil Personnel Services for possible referral to court for violation of the compulsory attendance law or to Juvenile Services for intake services.
      • Before and/or after school detention
      • Behavioral probation
      • Written contract
      • In-school suspension
      • Saturday School Program
      • Removal of school privileges
      • Reduction in grades or loss of credit
      • Restriction of extracurricular activities
      • Referral to an alternative educational program
      • Referral to Attendance Committee
      • Referral to Community Program

      Back to Top >>



      SECTION 6: Coping with Problems

      School Problems

      If you have a problem related to discipline, security, personal safety or vandalism, you should talk to:

      • The nearest teacher, security or administrator when there is a discipline or security problem. Explain what happened and seek their guidance.
      • The counselor, psychologist, pupil personnel worker or social worker to learn ways to deal with problems so you will feel safe and gain the skills to deal with similar problems in the future.
      • Always talk to your parent/guardian.

      Personal Problems

      • For assistance with personal problems that may impact your school performance or your personal happiness, please discuss the problem with your parent/guardian.
      • Seek the assistance of the counselor or any adult that you are comfortable with at your school. They may lead you to resources within the school and/or community.
      • Talk to a peer. Many times fellow students are able to help with problems. Talk to the school administrators, or if available, staff in the Student Assistance Program.

      Academic Problems

      For assistance with an academic problem or grade, you should:

      • Talk to your teacher when you are having difficulty with subjects, making poor grades or need extra assistance. The teacher may ask for a conference with you and/or your parent/guardian.
      • Seek assistance from your counselor. They can help with finding a peer that can assist you.
      • Discuss the academic concern with the assistant principal/principal.

      Physical, Sexual, Mental Abuse

      No student should be subjected to physical, sexual, or mental abuse. We do know, though, that abuse can happen to any child regardless of race, socioconomic status, religion, or culture.

      If a student feels he or she is being abused, the student should contact the counselor or the school administrator. If a parent feels his/her child is being abused, the parent should contact the school’s counselor or the school administrator.

      If you have reasonable suspicion of child abuse or neglect, you must contact your lo- cal Department of Social Services or the Police Department. Prince George’s Depart- ment of Social Services may be reached at their Hot Line 301-909-2450 or during the evenings and weekends at 301-699-8605. 

      ALTERNATIVE EDUCATION OPTIONS FOR SCHOOL COMPLETION

      There are a variety of PGCPS programs to assist students who may need an alternative education option to overcome the challenges to learn, achieve at high academic levels and ultimately graduate. There are alternative programs for students in grades 6-12 and alternative schools for recovery credit opportunities in grades 9-12. Programs include:

      Alternative Academy Programs 

      • Edgar Allan Poe Academy 
      • Annapolis Road Academy 
      • Green Valley Academy 
      • Croom High School 
      • Tall Oaks High School 
      • Incarcerated Youth Program

       

      Alternative School Programs 

      • Community-Based Classroom 
      • Crossland Evening High School 
      • Northwestern Evening High School 
      • Summer High School 
      • Adolescent Single Parent Program 

       

      Bullying, Harassment or Intimidation

      What Is Bullying, Harassment or Intimidation?

      Bullying, harassment and intimidation are anti-social behaviors that are characterized by an intent to cause harm and an imbalance of power. Bullying, harassment and intimidation is intentional behavior that includes verbal, physical, written or intentional electronic communication that creates a hostile educational environment by substantially interfering with a student’s educational benefits, opportunities, or performance, or with a student’s physical or psychological well-being. Bullying, harassment or intimidation may be motivated by an actual or a perceived personal characteristic including race, national origin, marital status, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, religion, ancestry, physical attributes, socio-economic status, familial status, or physical or mental ability or disability or is threatening or seriously intimidating; and, occurs on school property, at a school activity or event, or on a school bus; or, substantially disrupts the orderly operation of a school. Bullying, harassment or intimidation may be repeated or have the potential to be repeated. Bullying, harassment or intimidation includes discrimination.

      Who Reports Allegations of Bullying, Harassment or Intimidation?

      Anyone can report allegations of bullying, harassment and intimidation. Students, parents, teachers, school administration, other staff, school volunteers or the community-at-large may report these behaviors.

      How Do I Report Bullying, Harassment or Intimidation?

      Reports of bullying, harassment or intimidation may be made directly to a teacher, counselor or administrator. Reporting is not tattling or snitching. Reporting is providing information to an adult to address behavior that must be stopped. All reports should be documented in writing on the Bullying, Harassment or Intimidation Reporting Form. The form is available in schools, in this handbook and on the PGCPS website. The electronic form allows anyone to report directly to the school administrator or designee in a confidential format.

      What Happens After the Report Is Submitted?

      Once the report is submitted to the school, the administration or the administrative designee will promptly and appropriately conduct an investigation. Findings of the investigation will be documented on the Bullying, Harassments or Intimidation Incident School Investigation Form. The school will notify parents of the victim and the offender of the outcome of the investigation once the investigation has been completed. The notification must respect the confidentiality of the victim and the offender. Therefore, specific information related to disciplinary consequences will not be provided (Administrative Procedure 5143 Bullying, Harassment or Intimidation). If bullying, harassment or intimidation is substantiated, the school team should develop a plan of support.

      Sexual Harassment

      Any conduct that violates the policy on discrimination or harassment committed by any student of either sex against students is inappropriate behavior. Conduct that is of a sexual nature is the most commonly reported form of sexual harassment. This conduct may include overt sexual solicitation, inappropriate touching, sexual jokes and inquiries about a person’s sex life. This includes unwanted sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical contact of a sexual nature. Sexual harassment also includes acts that are not overtly sexual, but rather are directed at individuals based on their gender, such as profanity or rude behavior that is gender-specific.

      These issues must be brought to the attention of school administration. Unresolved concerns may be elevated to the Executive Director of Student Services. Remember, all types of bullying, harassment or intimidation are reported on the reporting form.

       

       

      WHAT TO DO IF YOU ARE BULLIED, HARASSED OR INTIMIDATED

      • Report the behavior to any adult.
      • Tell the bully to stop. Be firm and clear.
      • Complete the Bullying, Harassment, or Intimidation (BHI) reporting form
      • Every complaint must be submitted to the Principal or Assistant Principal and documented on the BHI Reporting Form.
      • Students may seek guidance, support and/or advocacy in addressing matters related to bullying, harassment or intimidation.

       

      Back to Top >>



      SECTION 7: PGCPS Code of Student Conduct

      The Level of Responses and Interventions chart below is used to correct inappropriate behavior and actions of PGCPS students. If interventions are successful, a referral to the school administrator may not be necessary. These interventions aim to teach, correct and replace behaviors so students can learn and demonstrate safe and respectful behaviors. Staff members are encouraged to implement a variety of teaching and classroom management strategies.

      Staff members are encouraged to implement various levels of responses and interventions with students at all times during regularly scheduled schools hours. In addition, this procedure applies while a student is located on or off school property during fields trips, school sponsored events, athletic functions, while being transported on PGCPS vehicles and during any other school related extracurricular activity.

      Administrators are encouraged to use the lowest Level of Response to address inappropriate behavior. Serious behaviors that are deemed harmful to the safe and orderly environment of the school will be addressed at the highest level.

      LEVEL 1

      Response:  

      These responses aim to teach and correct inappropriate behavior so students can learn, act respectfully and contribute to a safe environment. The classroom teacher or counselor will correct the behavior of the student committing a minor offense. Teachers are encouraged to try a variety of teaching and classroom management strategies. This response can be used when the student has no history of prior incidents.

       Interventions:

      • Contact parent via telephone, e-mail or text message
      • Conduct a teacher or student conference
      • Correct and provide verbal redirection in the classroom
      • Establish the buddy teacher system (placing a student in temporary time out in another classroom)
      • Develop a daily behavior progress sheet
      • Take time with a student to reflect on Team (SIT)
      • Referral to community organizations
      • Referral to Student Support Team (SST)
      • Develop/Revise Functional Behavioral Assessment
      • Referral to School Instructional Team (SIT)
      • Referral to IEP/504 
      • Referral to School Instructional Team (SIT)
      • Referral to IEP/504 team (students with disabilities)
      • Functional Behavioral Assessment (FBA)/Behavioral Intervention Plan

      LEVEL 2

      Response:

      The administrator, pupil personnel worker or counselor will work with the student to correct the behavior of the student committing the violation. This level will be appropriate for incidents that are inappropriate and disruptive to the learning environment. These responses address the potential implications for future harm while keeping the student in school.

      Interventions:

      • Change in schedule or class
      • Reprimand by appropriate administrator
      • Parent/guardian notification
      • Mentoring Program
      • Revision to IEP/504plan (for students with disabilities)
      • Loss of privileges
      • In-school suspension
      • Detention
      • Referral to Pupil Personnel Worker
      • Restitution
      • Restorative practice strategies
      • Conflict resolution and community conferencing
      • Assignment of work projects
      • Referral to community organizations
      • Referral to School Psychologist
      • Referral toSchool Instructional Team (SIT)
      • Referral toIEP/504team (students with disabilities)
      • Functional Behavioral Assessment (FBA)/Behavioral Intervention Plan

      LEVEL 3

      Response:

      If a student disrupts the school environment and/or school related activities, a short-term suspension of 1-3 days may be given by the principal to a student committing the
      violation because of the severity of the behavior. The duration of the short-term removal is to be limited as much as practicable while adequately addressing the behavior through the use of interventions and responses. 

      Interventions:

      • Notify parent/guardian
      • Referral to IEP/504 team (students with disabilities)
      • Referral to Professional School Counselor
      • Revision to IEP/504 plan(students with disabilities) asneeded
      • Referral to Safe and Drug-Free Schools
      • Referral to Pupil Personnel Worker
      • Referral to School InstructionalTeam (SIT)
      • Referral to community organizations
      • Referral to Student SupportTeam (SST)
      • Develop/Revise Functional Behavioral Assessment
      • Assessment/BehavioralIntervention Plan
      • Referral to School Psychologist
      • Beautification Project
      • In-school suspension
      • Short-term suspension (1-3 days)

      LEVEL 4

      Response:

      Long-Term Suspension (4-10 days) and Extended Suspension (11-45 days) and/or referral to a
      Disciplinary Alternative Program – Appropriate for behavior that significantly disrupts the educational environment in the school, on the bus or at school activities and affects the safety of others. These responses focus on the safety of the school community and ending self-destructive and serious behaviors. 

      Interventions:

      • Notify parent/guardian
      • Functional Behavioral Assessment
      • Behavioral Intervention Plan
      • Community conferencing or mediation
      • Referral to community organizations
      • Referral to Safe and Drug-Free Schools
      • Referral to IEP/504 team (students with disabilities) for manifestation determination
      • Alternative Programs
      • Suspension Request (long-term 4-10 days)
      • Alternative Administrative Services

      LEVEL 5

      Response:

      These responses involve the removal of a student from the school environment for 45 days
      or longer because of the severity of the behavior. A student may be expelled and/or referred to a Disciplinary Alternative Program for behavior that seriously disrupts the educational environment in the school, on the bus or at a school activity that affects the safety of others. 

      Interventions:

      • Behavioral Intervention Plan
      • Referral to community organizations
      • Referral to Safe and Drug Free Schools
      • Referral to IEP/504 team (students with disabilities)for manifestation determination
      • Alternative educational placement
      • Expulsion (45 days or longer; to be considered in most extreme cases) 

       

      Back to Top >>



      PGCPS Code of Student Conduct: Disciplinary Response Levels

       

       CHART KEY

      The chart will identify common areas of behavior that result in a Level of Response by PGCPS.

      Grade Levels

      AG: All Grades
      PK-5: Prekindergarten - Fifth Grades
      6-12: Sixth through Twelfth Grades

      Response Levels

      1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5

      Points of Contact

      HD: Health Department
      SE: Security
      SA: Safe & Drug-Free Schools
      PG: Police Department
      DSS: Department of Social Services
      DSESS: Department of Student Engagement and School Support

       

       

      VIOLATION

       

      GRADE  LEVEL

      RESPONSE  LEVEL

      POINT  OF  CONTACT

        ACADEMIC DISHONEST Y

        Dishonesty, cheating, plagiarism 

        AG

        1 | 2

       

        ALCOHOL

        Use and possession 

        AG

        2 | 3 | 4 | 5

        SE | SA | HD

       

      Distribution, selling to students

      6-12

      4 | 5

       

      ARSONOR FIRE

       

      PK-5

      2 | 3

      SE

       

       

      6-12

      3 | 4 | 5

       

        ATTACK

        Attack on another student 

       PK-5

        2 | 3

       

      (PHYSICAL)

       

      6-12

      3 | 4

       

       

      Serious bodily injury to another student

      PK-5

      2 | 3

      SE | PG

       

       

      6-12

      4 | 5

       

       

      Attack on an adult, unintentional physical contact with school personnel

      PK-5

      1 | 2

       

       

       

      6-12

      2 | 3

       

       

      Attack on an adult, physically attacking an adult including striking a staff

      PK-5

      2 | 3

       

       

      member who is intervening in a fight or other disruptive activity

      6-12

      4 | 5

       

       

      Attack on an adult causing serious bodily injury

      PK-5

      2 | 3

      SE | PG

       

       

      6-12

      5

       

        BOMB  THREAT

       

        PK-5

        2 | 3

        SECURITY WILL FOLLOW

       

       

      6-12

      3 | 4

      BOMBTHREATPOLICY

        BULLYING/

        Minor harassment (e.g., unwanted conduct that violates a person’s 

        AG

        1 | 2

        DSESS

      HARASSMENT

      dignity or creates an intimidating, hostile, degrading, humiliating or

       

       

       

       

      offensiveenvironment for them)

       

       

       

       

       Cyber bullying – Using information and communication 

        AG

        2 | 3 | 4

       

       

      technologies (e.g., email, mobile devices, text messages, instant

       

       

       

       

      messaging, defamatory personal websites, personal polling sites or

       

       

       

       

      a combination of these) to support deliberate repeated and hostile

       

       

       

       

      behavior by an individual or group with the intention of physically

       

       

       

       

      or psychologically intimidating others

       

       

       

       

      Serious bullying/harassment (e.g., persistent or long-term harassment)

      AG

      3 | 4

       

       

      Hazing – An act that subjects to potential harm and is affiliated

      AG

      3 | 4

      SE

       

      with initiation into a student organization or team. Hazing may involve

       

       

       

       

      an act committed against a student or a situation in which a student

       

       

       

       

      is coerced into committing an act.

       

       

       

        DISRUPTION

        Talking out in class or talking out of turn; throwing objects; 

        AG

        1 | 2 | 3

       

       

      picking on, bothering or teasing other students; inappropriate or

       

      1-3DAYSMAXIMUM

       

       

      unauthorized use of PEDs; and other behavior that distracts from

       

       

       

       

      student learning; directly instigating or prompting others to cause a disruption 

       

       

       

       

       

       

       

       

       

      DESTRUCTION OPROPERTY

      Property valued below $500

      PK-5

      6-12

      1 | 2 | 3

      2 | 3

      SE

       

      Property valued above $500

      PK-5

      6-12

      2 | 3

      3 | 4

      SE

        DISRESPECT TOWARDS

        Making inappropriate gestures, symbols or comments, or using profane or offensive language 

        AG

        1 | 2 | 3

      1-3DAYSMAXIMUM

       

       Using verbal insults or put-downs, or lying to, misleading or giving false information to school staffAG1 | 2 | 3 

      1-3 DAYS MAXIMUM

       
       The refusal or willful failure to respond to or carry out a reasonable request by authorized school personnelAG1 | 2 | 3 

      1-3 DAYS MAXIMUM

       
      DRESS CODE  Failure to comply with dress codeAG 1 | 2  
      DRUGS CONTROLLED SUBSTANCES Unauthorized use/possession of prescription drugs  

      Use/possession of illegal drugs or paraphernalia including imitation or prescription (See page 25)  


      AG
       
      AG
       
      2 | 3 | 4 | 5   
       
      3 | 4 | 5   

      SA
       
      SA
       Unauthorized possession, use or distribution of over-the-counter medication

      AG   3 | 4 SA
       Distribution or selling illegal drugs/prescription drugsPK-5
      6-12
       3 | 4  
      4 | 5 
      SE | PG
      FAILURE  TO COME TO
       
      CLASS PREPARED
       AG 1 
      FAILURE TO WEAR 
      IDENTIFICATION  BADGE
       AG1 
      FALSE ALARM      AG3 | 4   SE

       

       

      FIGHTING   

      Physical aggression with another student (e.g., shoving or pushing)

      AG

      1 | 2

      SE

       

        Physical aggression with another student that results in minor injuries 

        AG

        2 | 3

        SE

       

      Fighting resulting in serious bodily injury

      PK-5

      6-12

      2 | 3

      4 | 5

      SE | PG

        FORGERY

       

        AG

        2

       

        GAMBLING

        Gambling requiring the use of money or exchangeable goods 

        AG

        2 | 3

        SE


        GROUP FIGHT

      Group fight causing material disruption to the school day 

        AG

        3 | 4

       

       

      Group fight resulting in serious bodily injury

      PK-5

      2 | 3

      SE

       

       

      6-12

      4 | 5

       

      INTERNET/ COMPUTER MISUSE

      Any unauthorized or inappropriate use of technology related resources

      PK-5

      1 | 2

       

       

       

      6-12

      2 | 3 | 4

       

        EXPLOSIVES

       Possession, use or distribution of explosives (does not include small fireworks) 

        PK-5

        2 | 3

        SE

       

       

      6-12

      4 | 5

       

        POSSESSION OR USE OF WEAPONS OR INSTRUMENTS USED AS SUCH

      Other weapons: possessing an implement that is likely to cause serious bodily harm, without intent to use. 

        PK-5

        1 | 2

        SE | PG

       

       

      6-12

      2 | 3 | 4 | 5

       

       

      Use or attempt to use weapon

      PK-5

      5

      SE | PG

       

       

      6-12

      5

       

       

      Other guns: possessing a look-alike gun (e.g., water guns, toy guns) 

       PK-5

        1 | 2

        SE | PG

       

       

      6-12

      3 | 4

       

       

       Possessing an unloaded/inoperable non-firearm gun (e.g., pellet guns, BB guns) 

       PK-5

       2 | 3

        SE | PG

       

       

      6-12

      3 | 4

       

       

        Possessing an unloaded/operable non-firearm gun 

        PK-5

        3

        SE | PG

       

       

      6-12

      3 | 4

       

       

       Possessing firearms (e.g., hand guns) 

        PK-5

        5

        SE | PG

       

       

      6-12

      5

       

      SEXUAL MISCONDUCT

      Sexual harassment (e.g., unwelcome sexual advances; request

      PK-5

      1 | 2 | 3

       

       

      for sexual favors; other inappropriate verbal, written or physical conduct of a sexual nature) 

      6-12

      2 | 3 | 4

       

       

      Sexual activity or sexual misconduct (e.g., indecent exposure, engaging in sexual activity, soliciting and sexting)

       PK-5

       2 | 3

        SE

       

       

      6-12

      3 | 4

       

       SEXUAL ATTACK

      Intentionally engaging in a physical sexual attack on another 

       PK-5

       3

       SE | PG | DSS

       

       

      6-12

      4 | 5

      REFERRAL TO COUNSELING 

      SHAKEDOWN/ STRONG ARM/

      Using a threat (without a weapon) to get a person to turn over his property

      PK-5

      6-12

      2 | 3

      2 | 3

      SE

      EXTORTION  

      Using a threat (with a weapon) to get a person to turn over his property

      PK-5

      6-12

      2 | 3 | 4

      4 | 5

      SE

      THEFT

       Theft below $500 

      PK-5

      6-12

        2

      2 | 3

       

       

      Theft $500 or more

      PK-5

      6-12

      2 | 3

      3 | 4

      SE

      THREAT

      Written or verbal threat to a student

      AG

                             1 | 2 | 3 

       

       

       Written or verbal threat to an adult 

      PK-5

      6-12

       2 | 3

      3 | 4

       

      TOBACCO USE

       

       AG

        1 | 2 | 3

      1-3DAYSMAXIMUM

       

      SA

      TRESPASSING

       

      AG

      2 | 3

      SE

      TRUANCY

      Leaving class or area without school permission; unauthorized departure from school

      AG

      1 | 2

      NOTIFY PARENTS AND FOLLOW AP5113

       

      Persistent or excessive tardiness to class or school

      AG

      1 | 2

       

       

      Loitering

      AG

      1 | 2

       

       

      Class cutting

      AG

      1 | 2

       

      UNAUTHORIZED USE OF
       ELECTRONIC AND/OR 
       
      PORTABLE ELECTRONIC 
      DEVICES
        AG  1 | 2 

       

      Special Notes

      Suspensions

      For Students With IEPs/504 Plans

      When the school seeks to suspend students with disabilities for more than ten cumulative or consecutive days, the Individualized Education Program (IEP)/504 team must meet within ten days of the student’s removal from school. The purpose of this meeting is to determine whether or not the student’s behavior was a manifestation of the student’s disability. (Procedural Safeguards/Parental Rights)

      • If the IEP/504 team determines that the student’s conduct is a manifestation of the student’s disability, the student is returned to school immediately.
      • If the IEP/504 team determines that the conduct is not a manifestation of the student’s disability, the student is subject to the regular discipline procedures explained herein.

      Regardless of whether the conduct is a manifestation of the disability, if the incident for which the student with an IEP is being disciplined involves a dangerous weapon, a controlled dangerous substance or serious bodily injury, the school system can unilaterally place a student in an alternative education setting for up to 45 school days.

      Educational Services for Students With IEPs 

      Schools are required to provide students with IEPs a free, appropriate, public education (FAPE). While suspended, students must continue to receive educational services so as to enable them to continue to participate in the general education curriculum and progress toward meeting the goals set out for them in the IEP. The educational services should be documented on the Manifestation Determination Worksheet and explained to the parent/guardian.

      Educational Services for General Education Students and Students With 504 Plans

      For short-term and long-term suspensions, work will be provided. For extended suspensions and expulsions, if the student is not placed in an alternative educational program the School Liaison will ensure on a weekly basis that daily classwork and assignments are provided, graded, recorded and returned to the student. The school liaison will communicate with the student and parent/guardian on a regular basis.

      Tests and Examinations

      Principals may allow a student to take tests and examinations missed while on suspension. A student temporarily returning to school or another location solely to take tests or examinations must be accompanied by his/her parent/guardian.

      Conferences

      Although the conference is held to resolve the status of the suspension of the student, it is not a legal proceeding or hearing. The conference allows an opportunity to exchange views regarding a student’s well being, and at times may include discussion of confidential information pertinent only to the parties immediately affected by the information. While the overall record of a student should be considered, the determination of whether a student has committed the misconduct of which he/she is charged must be based solely on information that relates to the specific incident. At all levels, the student and parent/ guardian have the right to be represented by legal counsel, provided the parent/guardian gives his/her verbal consent for such representation, or if absent, gives written consent for representation. If the
      student and parent/guardian are to be represented by legal counsel, prior notification of this fact shall be given to the Chief Executive Officer or his/her designated representative.

      Participation in School and School-Related Activities

      Suspended students are not eligible to participate in any school functions or be on any Board of Education property for the entire period of their suspensions, except for attendance at previously scheduled appointments, and, if the student is a minor, only with the parent/guardian. This prohibition includes attendance at athletic events and other school-related activities.

      Expulsions

      Participation in School and School-Related Activities

      Students who have been expelled from school are not eligible to participate in any school functions or be on any Board of Education property for the duration of their expulsions, except for attendance at previously scheduled appointments, and, if the student is a minor, only with the parent/guardian. This prohibition includes attendance at athletic events and other school-related activities.

      Students Currently Expelled from Another School System

       A student who enrolls or attempts to enroll in Prince George’s County Public Schools who has been expelled from or placed on an extended suspension from another school system, or has been expelled from an alternative middle or high school, may be denied attendance for a length of time equal to the time the student has been so expelled or on extended suspension.

      Other

      Restitution

      If a student damages, destroys or substantially decreases the value of school property or any personal possessions on school property while committing an offense of this Code or any other law or regulation, the principal may require the student or parent/guardian to make restitution. The following is applicable in all cases except those which have been referred to the Department of Juvenile Services.

      • The principal may require restitution through financial payment, a student work project at the school or an appropriate combination of these.
      • If the principal orders financial restitution, the restitution amount is not to exceed the fair market value of the property.
      • The maximum amount of financial restitution that may be ordered by the principal is $2,500.

      Search of Students

      The principal, assistant principal, or school security staff may search a student. Additionally, a principal may designate, in writing, a teacher who may conduct searches while students are on a school-sponsored trip if he/she has a reasonable belief that a student has possession of an item, the possession of which is a criminal offense or a violation of other state law or PGCPS rules or regulations.

      Authorized personnel conducting a search of the student’s person, possession, locker or assigned personal space will make a reasonable effort to inform the student prior to the search. Illegal items that are seized will be turned over to law enforcement personnel. All other items will be returned to the student or parent/guardian within a reasonable period of time.

      Reportable Offenses(formerly Community Offenses)

      Notice of a reportable offense, as defined in COMAR 13A.08.01.17, may not be the only basis for the suspension, reassignment, or expulsion of a student from school. If needed, the school system will make an appropriate educational program for every student who has been arrested by a law enforcement agency for a reportable offense. School administrators with parent/guardian input will determine whether a student’s presence in the home school creates a safety and/or security risk and develop the appropriate educational program. Appropriate educational programming and related services will be provided to an identified student with disabilities in accordance with the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) and corresponding state law.

       

      Back to Top >>



      SECTION 8: Disciplinary Response Terms

      Discipline should be both corrective and instructive and designed to foster growth and understanding in the student. Appropriate responses to misbehavior are determined by the age and maturity of the student.

      INTERVENTIONS AND STRATEGIES

      While there are instances in which formal disciplinary measures must be used, teachers and administrators are encouraged to develop and utilize a variety of informal disciplinary and guidance strategies to maintain effective learning conditions. These strategies may include but are not limited to:

      After-School/Extracurricular Activities 

      Revoking a student’s right to participate in extracurricular activities, including sports and clubs.

      Behavioral Intervention Plan

      An approach to correcting inappropriate or disruptive student behavior through a plan designed by school staff to offer positive behavioral interventions, strategies and supports. This plan is appropriate for students with and without disabilities.

      Behavioral Probation

      The principal or his/her designee may place any student who has been involved in an act of Level I, II, or III misconduct on behavioral probation in addition to, or instead of, suspension. School personnel must, however, perform an investigation of the situation; provide formal notice to the student and parent/ guardian, and an opportunity for a parent/guardian conference. Behavioral probation should be for a definite period during which critical examination and evaluation of the student’s progress is to take place.

      Cafeteria Duty/In-School Work Detail

      Students participate in a school-based activity that requires the student to spend time on a beautification project in the school or on school grounds.

      Community Conferencing

      Allows students, school staff and others involved in a conflict to discuss the conflict and to propose solutions.

      Community Service

      Allows students to participate in activities to serve and benefit the community. Examples include working at a soup kitchen, cleaning up public spaces, helping at a health facility, etc.

      Conference

      Involves students, parents, guardians, teachers, school staff and principals in discussion about student misbehavior and potential solutions that address social, academic and personal issues related to the behavior.

      Conflict Resolution

      Empowers students to take responsibility for peacefully resolving conflicts.

      Detention Hall

      The principal, or teacher upon approval by the principal, may establish a Detention Hall. The Detention Hall shall meet daily, or as needed, before or after regular school hours, with the time for each session determined by the administrator. The Detention Hall shall serve as an alternative to a suspension for students who have been involved in persistent minor Level I or Level II disciplinary infractions. The Detention Hall may be organized to serve the needs of each individual school.

      Drugs/Controlled Substances 

      Unauthorized use/possession of legal drugs; being under the influence of illegal drugs; using/possessing illegal drugs; distributing/selling legal or illegal drugs.

      Functional Behavior Assessment 

      Involves gathering information about students’ inappropriate or disruptive behavior and determining approaches that school staff should take to correct or manage student behavior. This information is used to develop a Behavioral Intervention Plan for the student.

      Individualized Education Program (IEP) Team

      A group of individuals who are responsible for identifying and evaluating students with disabilities; developing, reviewing and revising IEP’s for students with disabilities, as well as developing, reviewing and revising Functional Behavior Assessments and Behavioral Intervention Plans; and determining the placement of students with disabilities in a least restrictive environment.

      In-School Suspension  

      In-school suspension is when the administrator determines that a student’s conduct warrants removal from class but not the school building. Removing the student within the school building from the student’s educational program for up to but not more than 10 days in a school year for disciplinary reasons by the school principal. The school principal will provide the parent with a written notification of the in-school suspension.

      Parent Outreach

      Requires school staff to inform parents/guardians of their child’s behavior and seek their assistance in correcting inappropriate or disruptive behavior. Outreach made in writing or by telephone is intended to make parents aware of the student’s behavior,task completion and achievement, and can include a request for parents to accompany students to school for a portion of the day or all day. 

      Parent Shadowing

      Involves parent/guardian participating in a shadowing experience by accompanying their child to class(es) for a specified period of time.

      Police Contact or Report to Law Enforcement/Juvenile Justice System

      Reporting a student to law enforcement or to the juvenile justice system. Schools must only refer a student to law enforcement when the immediate safety of the student and/or other school community members is threatened. This generally occurs in only the most serious and extreme acts of criminal activity. Parents/guardians must be immediately contacted. 

      Positive Behavior Intervention and Support Program (PBIS)

      A program that uses data to enhance the capacity of schools to educate all students by developing research-based, school-wide and classroom discipline systems.

      Peer Mediation 

      Conflict resolution techniques in which students help other students deal with and develop solutions to conflicts.

      Referral to the Office of Safe and Drug-Free Schools

      Occurs for behavior related to alcohol, tobacco and/or substance abuse.

      Referral to School-Based Services 

      Referral to counselor, pupil personnel worker, health care provider or social worker. Sessions can be individual, can include family members or can be done in groups.

      Reflective Essay

      Students are assigned a writing activity to reflect on the behavior that disrupted the learning environment.The assignment requires the student to address the incident and identify ways to handle a like situation in the future.

      Response to Intervention (RTI)

      A multi-tier approach to the early identification and support of students with learning and behavior needs

      Restorative Justice Practices

      Interventions and responses designed to identify and address the harm caused by an incident. A plan will be developed to heal and correct the situation with the student who caused the harm. 

      Saturday School 

      Requires students to attend school for a specified period on Saturday to complete academic assignments and/or participate in a school-based beautification project.

      Schedule Adjustments 

      Requires a change in all or part of a student’s schedule. School-based administrators will recommend options to meet the needs of individual students.

      Section 504 Team

      A multidisciplinary team responsible for identifying,evaluating and monitoring the provision of Section 504 accommodations, modifications and services to students with disabilities. This school-based team serves to ensure that students with disabilities are provided the same educational access to school curriculum, activities and programs as their non-disabled peers.

      Student Instructional/Support Team 

      Usually consists of the school principal, nurse, pupil personnel worker, psychologist, teachers, and external agency representatives who help develop prevention and intervention techniques and may recommend classroom instructional strategies or additional instructional supports to assist the child. The team will meet on a regular basis to monitor the child’s progress and make additional recommendations for interventions, if needed.

      Teen Court

      Referring students to a “court” of peer jurors for resolution.

      Temporary Removal from Class

      Removing a student within the school building from his or her regular education program.

      SHORT-TERM SUSPENSION

      A short-term suspension denies a student the right to attend school and to take part in any school function for a period of 1-3 days.

      Review of Short-Term Suspension

      A review of a short-term suspension shall not serve to delay the suspension. A request for a review of a short-term suspension is accepted as evidence that the parent/guardian wishes further consideration of the results of the conference conducted by the principal or his/her designee and/or the circumstances of the student’s conduct and suspension. If a parent wishes a formal review of the suspension, the parent is to contact the Pupil Personnel Worker to request the review. The Pupil Personnel Worker shall meet with the principal to review the circumstances of the suspension and, if appropriate, meet with the principal and parent together to resolve the request for a review. 

      LONG-TERM SUSPENSION

      A long-term suspension denies a student the right to attend school and to take part in any school function for 4-10 days.

      Review of Long-Term Suspension

      A review of a long-term suspension shall not serveto delay the suspension. A request for a review of a long-term suspension is accepted as evidence that the parent/guardian wishes a formal review of the suspension, the parent is to contact the Pupil Personnel Worker to request the review. The Pupil Personnel Worker shall meet with the principal to review the circumstances of the suspension and,if appropriate, meet with the principal and parent together to resolve the request for a review.

      EXTENDED SUSPENSION

      An extended suspension means the removal of a student from a student’s regular program for a time period over 10 days but not longer than 45 days fora violation for which the student has engaged in chronic and extreme disruption of the educational process that has created a substantial barrier to learning for other students across the school day, and other available and appropriate behavioral and disciplinary interventions have been exhausted.The extended suspension can only occur if: a. The Chief Executive Officer or designated representative has determined that the student’s return to school prior to the completion of the suspension period would pose an imminent threat of serious harm to other students and staff. b. The Chief Executive Officer or designated representative limits the duration of the exclusion to the greatest extent practicable. The principal will request the extended suspension from the Chief Executive Officer/designee. A Pupil Personnel Worker (PPW) or CEO designee will meet with the student, parent/guardian, and requesting school within ten days of the student’s removal from school. After the conference, the PPW will report his/her findings. If granted, notice of this decision must be in writing and must inform the parent/guardian of the charges and policy or policies violated. Appropriate and available behavioral support services may be offered. If the principal’s request for extended suspension is not granted, the student will be returned to school and the principal or his/her designee will contact the parent/guardian to schedule and intake conference.

      Appeal of Extended Suspension

      A student who is suspended for more than ten school days may appeal the decision to the Board of Education within ten days after determination. After receipt of the written request for appeal, the Board will conduct a hearing. The parties may bring counsel and witnesses to the hearing. The appeal to the Board does not stay the decision of the Chief Executive Officer or designee. The Board will render its decision in writing within 45 days of the request for appeal. 

      EXPULSION

      An expulsion from school denies students the right to attend their regular school program for 45 days or longer. The exclusion may occur only under the following circumstances:a. The Chief Executive Officer or designated representative has determined that the student’s return to school prior to the completion of the expulsion period would pose an imminent threat of serious harm to other students or staff.b. The Chief Executive Officer or designated representative limits the duration of the exclusion to the greatest period practicable.The principal will request an expulsion from the Chief Executive Officer/designee. Appropriate and available behavioral support services may be offered. A due process hearing will be held within 10 school days. If expelled, the student may be placed in an alternative program. If not placed in an alternative program, missed classwork and assignments will be provided via the School Liaison.

      Appeal of Expulsion

      A student who is expelled may appeal the decision of the Chief Executive Officer or designee in writing to the Board of Education within ten days after the determination.

      Readmission After Expulsion

      To be readmitted to a regular school program after serving an expulsion, the student or the parent/guardian, acting for the student, may apply to the Expulsion Review Board. If the student has not violated any of the criminal laws of the State of Maryland or any other jurisdiction during the period of expulsion, the Chief Executive Officer may readmit the student. 

      Back to Top >>



      SECTION 9: Transportation and Bus Behavior

      Riding the school bus is an integral part of the school day for many students, and directives in this Code apply fully to students when they ride the bus. Riding the bus is a privilege. This privilege may be temporarily denied or permanently revoked if misconduct jeopardizes the safe operation of the school bus or the safety of students riding the bus. School suspension is a possible option. Students are expected to observe the following rules for safety and courtesy on the bus 

      BUS STOP BEHAVIORS

      • Use your assigned bus stop.
      • Wait in a quiet and orderly manner.
      • Be aware, cautious and respectful of traffic.
      • Respect private property.
      • Avoid pushing.

      BOARDING THE BUS

      • Wait until the bus comes to a complete stop.
      • Make sure the bus warning lights are activated before boarding.
      • Board the bus when it is safe to do so.
      • Avoid pushing and crowding.
      • Upon entering the bus, go directly to an available or assigned seat and remain seated until the bus arrives at the school or your stop.
      • Do not use Portable Electronic Devices (PEDs) while boarding the bus.

      BUS BEHAVIORS

      • Follow the instructions or directives of the bus driver.
      • Do not eat or drink on the bus.
      • Stay in your seat; keep aisles and exits clear.
      • Keep your hands, arms, legs, head and other objects out of the bus window.
      • Avoid the use of foul language or profanity.
      • Be respectful of the rights and safety of others.
      • PEDs may be used on the bus if it does not impact the safe operation of the bus. Actions which may impact the safe operation of the bus include, but are not limited to, taking pictures, videos, passing PEDs around, or using PEDs while it is dark outside if the PED light causes distraction to the bus driver.

      EXITING THE BUS

      • Remain in your seat until the bus comes to a complete stop.
      • Do not use PEDs while exiting the bus.
      • Exit the bus in an orderly and prompt manner.
      • Exit at your assigned bus stop.
      • Use care when crossing a street controlled by bus warning lights

       DISCIPLINARY RESPONSES

      Parents are responsible for the supervision and safety of students from home until they board the bus, as well as from the bus stop to home.

      LEVEL 1

      • Corrected by bus driver
      • Seat change
      • Student conference
      • Parent conference
      • Parent contact

       LEVEL 2

      • Administrative Referral
      • Parent contact
      • Parent/student conference
      • Bus Behavior Contract

      LEVEL 3

      • Administrative Referral
      • Possible restriction or suspension of school bus riding privileges
      • Suspension of bus privileges
      • Referral to Professional School Counselor
      • Referral to Pupil Personnel Worker
      • Short-term suspension 

      LEVEL 4

      • Administrative Referral with request for long-term suspension/extended suspension
      • Suspension of bus privileges
      • Referral to Professional School Counselor
      • Referral to Pupil Personnel Worker


       

      Back to Top >>



      SECTION 10: Policies and Procedures

      System-Wide Dress Code
      Students attending Prince George’s County Public Schools should dress appropriately and in a way that is consistent with learning being a priority.

      Head Dress
      Head dress can be worn indoors for religious or health reasons only.

      Shirts and Blouses
      Shirts and blouses should be continuous from neckline to waist. The mid-section should never be visible. Tank tops and muscle shirts are not allowed.

      Clothing with vulgar language, obscene pictures, weapons, drugs/alcohol or drug paraphernalia and tobacco products are not allowed. Identifiable gang/crew clothing or paraphernalia are not allowed. Sheer clothing is not allowed.

      Skirts, Dresses and Shorts Skirts, dresses, and shorts are no shorter than students’ fingertips when arms are hanging straight down at their sides.

      Pants
      Pants should be worn and secured at the waist. Pants should not be worn below the waist exposing undergarments.

      Tights, stretch pants, leggings and spandex body suits must be worn with clothing long enough to cover the buttocks.

      Shoes
      Shoes must be worn.

      Portable Electronic Devices (PEDs) PGCPS values the use of technology as an important tool to enhance the educational environment and encourage student innovation. Students are allowed to possess a portable electronic device (PED) while on school property, school buses, and during field trips and other school sponsored events. However, it is a violation of the PGCPS Code of Student Conduct to use such devices in a manner that will disrupt the school environment or impact the safe operation of the school bus.

      If permitted by school administrators, students may use PEDs during the school day for instructional purposes, and at other times approved by the principal/designee. When students do not have permission to use PEDs, the devices must be turned off and be stored in the student’s pocket, backpack, purse, locker or vehicle. If a student uses the PED without permission, or refuses to comply with a reasonable request by authorized school personnel, including school bus drivers, to turn off or store PEDs, the student will be referred to the school principal for an appropriate response. In limited, emergency circumstances, principals may confiscate PEDs until the student’s parent/guardian comes to the school to retrieve it.

      Guidelines for the acceptable use of PEDs are continued in Administrative Procedure 5132.

      Use of Technology
      The increasing availability of technology creates both opportunities and risks for students. Since the potential for harm from the misuse of technology is significant, PGCPS has established guidelines by which students can use technology in a legal, safe, productive and ethical manner.

      Google Apps for Education is a free service to PGCPS students that includes the use of email, calendars, documents and sites through the convenience of a web browser. Students can communicate with teachers and peers, use easy to manage to-do-lists, access a calendar to keep dates organized, participate in online discussion boards and access online spreadsheets, documents and presentations. For safety and security reasons, students’ communication is limited to other PGCPS students and staff only.

      All use of technology under these guidelines is to be for legitimate educational purposes under the guidance or direction of school system staff. Administrative Procedure 0700, Information Technology Services Acceptable Usage Guidelines, defines technology as including “computers, scanners, digital cameras, video projectors, video cameras, cellphones, Nextel devices, PDA devices, and wireless e-mail devices” and outlines the acceptable use of such technology by students.

      The following conduct is prohibited while using the school system network, accessing the school system network from outside of the firewall, or while involved in situations under which this Code has jurisdiction. Students shall not:

      • Utilize the school system computer network for any illegal activity, including, but not limited to, gaining or attempting to gain unauthorized access to resources, files or devices on the network.
      • Access “chat lines” or enter “chat rooms” that are not part of a class activity under the direct supervision of a teacher.
      • Access or link to websites that contain material deemed vulgar, offensive, or otherwise inappropriate, including, but not limited to, websites promoting hatred, racial/religious/ sexual discrimination, use of illegal drugs/alcohol/tobacco, gaming or gambling, criminal activities or computer/network hacking.
      • Use or display copyrighted or otherwise licensed or contractual material without specific written permission or authorization from the appropriate party.
      • Utilize the network for commercial purposes or display any logo of any commercial entity not directly related to Prince George’s County Public Schools.
      • Post, use or download any files which cause congestion or impede network operations.
      • Trespass in or vandalize another’s files, folders, data or work.
      • Post anonymous messages or in any way misrepresent one’s own identity. 
      • Use an account password of another user.
      • Use abusive or otherwise objectionable language in any message.
      • Use e-mail or any portion of the PGCPS WAN to promote the annoyance, harassment or attack of others.
      • Take or facilitate the theft or damage of data, equipment or intellectual property, including degrading or disrupting equipment of system performance.

      Consequences for misuse may include, but are not limited to, suspension of equipment access, confiscation of the technological device, disciplinary action commensurate with the level of misconduct and/or legal action as appropriate. Complete guidelines for the acceptable use of technology are contained in Administrative Procedure0700.

      Social Media
      The school system does not govern the personal use of technology outside of school. In instances where the use of devices create a threat to students, staff or administration within the school environment and impedes opportunities for learning, or impacts the safe operation of the school bus, the school will apply disciplinary action in accordance with the Student Rights and Responsibilities Handbook.

      Social Media misuse includes internet/ computer and the misuse of other electronic devices that may have the impact of substantially disrupting the educational environment. Social media is inclusive of, but not limited to, web-based and mobile technologies, social networking sites, blogs, instant messaging, twitter, social blogs and video based sites such as YouTube. The most common misuse of social media is harassment via cyber bullying. When cyber bullying takes the form of harassment of protected classes, it may be prosecuted as a violation of a person’s civil rights.

      Tips: Should

      • Maintain privacy by not sharing passwords and/or codes.
      • Use telecommunications in school for educational purposes only under the direction of a teacher.
      • Use telecommunications or PEDs in school at other times, such as during lunch periods and extracurricular activities, if approved by school administrators.
      • Report acts of cyber bullying, harassment or sexual harassment to school staff. Do not respond to the harasser.

      Tips: Should Not

      • Share user names or passwords.
      • Access and/or use social media websites on school equipment.
      • Access social media sites while in school, on school property or while attending school sponsored events.
      • Post photographs, videos and tweeted messages of fights or threats of fights on social media sites.
      • Use electronic devices to distribute/ post abusive, harassing, bullying, libelous, obscene, offensive, profane, threatening, sexually explicit or illegal material including photos and comments.

      Violations in the Student Rights and Responsibilities Handbook, Board Policies, and school rules while using social media websites may result in a disciplinary response. Complete guidelines for the acceptable use of technology are contained in Administrative Procedure 0700.

      Alcohol and Other Drugs Unlawful possession, use and/or distribution of any Alcohol, Marijuana, Prescription Drugs, Controlled Dangerous Substances, Imitation Controlled Substances, Synthetic Intoxicants, Inhalants, Other Intoxicants, Controlled or Drug Paraphernalia on school property, including Board of Education owned vehicles or while in attendance at any Board of Education sponsored and supervised activity, are prohibited under this Code.

      Students who possess, use or distribute substances represented as or intended to be used as alcohol or a controlled dangerous substance will be treated by the rules and regulations of these procedures as if they were possessing, using or distributing alcohol or a controlled dangerous substance even though the substance itself may ultimately be determined not to be alcohol or a controlled dangerous substance.

      • POSSESSION implies that a student has any of the above substances on his/her person or with his/her personal property, or has under his/ her control by placement of and knowledge of the whereabouts of the substance on Board of Education property or other property on which he/she is present, by virtue of being within the jurisdiction of school authorities.
      • USE implies that a student is reasonably known to have ingested any of the above substances (e.g., drinking alcohol, smoking marijuana, taking a pill, etc.) or is reasonably found to be under the influence of a substance while under the jurisdiction of school authorities.
      • DISTRIBUTION implies the transfer of any of the above substances to any other person, with or without the exchange of money or other valuables.


      Student Possessors with Intent to Distribute
      A student in possession of a quantity of alcohol, controlled dangerous substances or other substances listed above in an amount which the principal could reasonably infer was intended to be available for distribution shall be charged with Possession with Intent to Distribute and be subject to the disciplinary guidelines outlined for student distributors.

      Student Distributors
      If the student has been found to have committed a distribution offense under the provisions of this section, the student shall be expelled, not withstanding any mitigating circumstances. The Chief Executive Officer may rescind the expulsion after the period of expulsion if the student provides documentation of satisfactory participation in an appropriate accredited alcohol/drug treatment program.

      Possession or Use of Alcohol or Other Drugs
      First Offense
      Any student that is found to have committed a first offense for use or possession of alcohol, controlled dangerous substance, drug paraphernalia and/or other substance will immediately have a “Notification of Request for Expulsion” filed by their school administrator and receive a short term suspension. That student will also be granted the opportunity to opt for the alternative to expulsion which is mandatory counseling sessions. The principal or his or her designee will provide the student’s parent/guardian with a list of community agencies that can provide the mandatory two counseling sessions. The school must call in the violation to the Safe and Drug-Free Schools Office. The student must provide to their school and the Safe and Drug-Free Schools Office documentation stating the counseling appointment date from the approved agency.

      Second Offense
      If a student is readmitted after an expulsion has been rescinded in accordance with the above condition and there is a further offense under this section, the principal or his/her designee will provide the students parent/guardian with a list of community agencies that can provide four mandatory counseling sessions. The school must call in the violation to the Safe and Drug-Free Schools Office. The student must provide to their school and the Safe and Drug-Free Schools Office documentation stating the counseling appointment date from the approved agency. Non-compliance in the alternative to expulsion will result in the “Notification of Request for Expulsion.”

      Third Offense
      If a student is readmitted after the expulsion has been rescinded in accordance with the above condition and there is a further offense under this section, the Chief Executive Officer may not rescind that expulsion.
      • Any recision for a third or further offense must be ordered by the Board of Education. All students suspended/ expelled for alcohol/controlled dangerous substance offenses are to be requested to reveal their source
      of the alcohol/controlled dangerous substance to the principal.

      Tobacco and Tobacco Products
      It is a violation of the Code of Student Conduct for students to use or possess any tobacco or nicotine products on school property. The following is a summary of the consequences for violating this section of the Code of Student conduct:

      First Offense

      • Parental notification by referring administrator.
      • Administrative referral to Student Affairs/Safe and Drug-Free Schools Office.
      • Student must complete an appropriate tobacco education program no later than four weeks from the date of the Code violation.
      • Student and parent/guardian will sign a contract stating there will be no further violation of the Code. Non- compliance will result in a two-day suspension or in-school suspension.

      Second Offense

      • Parental notification by referring administrator.
      • Administrative referral to Student Affairs/Safe and Drug-Free Schools Office.
      • Student is placed on suspension for one day.
      • Conference with parent/guardian is scheduled.
      • Student and the parent/guardian will complete an appropriate tobacco education program no later than four weeks from the date of the Code violation. Non-compliance will result in an additional two-day suspension or in-school suspension.

      Third Offense

      • Parental notification by referring administrator.
      • Administrative referral to Student Affairs/Safe and Drug-Free Schools Office.
      • Student is placed on suspension for two days.
      • Conference with parent/guardian is scheduled.
      • Student must complete an appropriate tobacco cessation program no later than ten weeks from the date of the student’s readmission to school. Non-compliance will result in an additional three-day suspension or in-school suspension.


      Fourth and Subsequent Offenses Thereafter, for offenses beyond the third infraction of the tobacco policy, the sanctions set forth in the Code of Student Conduct for students who repeatedly violate any provisions of the Code shall apply.

      Possession or Use of Weapons or Instruments Used as Such
      The Board of Education strongly believes that any student found in violation of this section will serve an extended suspension or be expelled by the Chief Executive Officer.

      1. For students enrolled in grades K through 5, the principal may use discretion as to responses for possession or use of a weapon.
      2. For students enrolled in grades 6 through 12, principals may make a request for expulsion to the Chief Executive Officer for the possession or use of a weapon by any student.
      3. In accordance with Maryland Annotated Code, Education Article Sec. 7-305, when a student is expelled for possession or use of a firearm, as defined in the Glossary section of this handbook under Possession or Use of Weapons or Instruments Used as Such, the student shall remain out of school for at least one year. After one year, the student, or the parent/guardian, acting for the student, may apply to the Chief Executive Officer for readmission. As appropriate, the Chief Executive Officer may order a shorter period of expulsion.
      4. The procedure for rescission of expulsion for possession or use of a weapon is the same as for other expulsions. However, if a student has been expelled previously for possession or use of a weapon and then readmitted through the rescission of that expulsion, the student will not be eligible for rescission if he/she is expelled again for possession or use of a weapon.

      Gangs, Gang Activity and Similar Destructive or Illegal Behavior 

       

      Gang, gang activity and similar destructive or illegal behaviors are prohibited under the Code of Student Conduct, in accordance with The Safe Schools Act of 2010.

      A student may not threaten an individual, or a friend or family member of an individual, with use of physical force or violence to coerce, induce or solicit the individual to participate in or prevent the individual from leaving a criminal gang; a) in a school vehicle, or b) in or within 1000 feet of real property owned or leased by the Board of Education. A student criminally charged with participating in a criminal street gang may automatically be remanded to an alternative education program by the court. When said behavior may substantially disrupt the educational environment, the school will provide the family with a list of community resources and proceed with Transfer Requirements.

      Behaviors may include, but are not limited to:

      • Gang recruitment
      • Gang initiation (hazing)
      • Group fighting
      • Bullying
      • Bias harassment
      • Defacing school property with gang graffiti
      • Throwing gang signs
      • Threatening to retaliate against a student or staff for reporting said behaviors

       Board of Education Policies and Administrative Procedures

      Administrative Procedure 0700 Information Technology Services Acceptable Usage Guidelines


      Administrative Procedure 4170 Discrimination and Harassment

      Administrative Procedure 5052 Alternative High School for Expelled Students

      Board of Education Policy 5113 Pupil Attendance and Absence

      Administrative Procedure 5113 Pupil Attendance and Absence

      Administrative Procedure 5115 Student Appeals of Long-Term Suspensions and Expulsions

      Administrative Procedure 5121 Examinations and Grading for Elementary and Secondary Schools

      Board of Education Policy 5122 Interscholastic and Extracurricular Activities: Academic Policy Requirements for Participation

      Administrative Procedure 5122 2.0 GPA Requirements for Participation in Interscholastic Athletics and Extracurricular Activities.

      Administrative Procedure 5123.2 General Procedures Pertaining to Promotion and Retention of Students.

      Administrative Procedure 5125 Student Records

      Administrative Procedure 5131.1 School Bus Conduct

      Administrative Procedure 5132 Portable Electronic Devices

      Administrative Procedure 5142 Gangs, Gang Activity and Similar Destructive or Illegal Behavior

      Board of Education Policy 5143 Bullying, Harassment or Intimidation

      Administrative Procedure 5145 Suspected Child Abuse and Neglect

      Administrative Procedure 5146 Procedural Guidelines for Students Disabled Under Section 504 of Rehabilitation Act of 1973

      Board of Education Policy 5152 Dress Code

      Administrative Procedure 5152 System-Wide Student Dress Code

      Administrative Procedure 5158 Middle School Athletic Association

      Administrative Procedure 10201 Disruptive Acts Requiring Security Measures

      Administrative Procedure 10301 Court Proceedings

      Procedural Safeguards: Parental Rights

      Back to Top >>



      SECTION 11: Glossary

      Academic Dishonesty

      Cheating – Providing, receiving or viewing answers to quiz or test items or independent assignments. Having books, notes/notebook or mobile devices out during test without permission.

      Alcohol

      Any beverages containing, but not limited to, beer, wine, liquor or other intoxicating substances. (See pg. 24)

      Arson/Fire

      Intentionally setting or attempting to set a fire or helping others to set a fire without intent to endanger others.

      Bomb Threat

      The real or intentional false claim that an explosive device is located on school property or at a school function.

      Bullying, Harassment or Intimidation Bullying, harassment, or intimidation

      (BHI) are anti-social behaviors that are characterized by an intent to cause harm and an imbalance of power. Bullying, harassment, or intimidation is intentional behavior that includes verbal, non-verbal, physical, written, or intentional electronic communication that creates a hostile environment by substantially interfering with a student’s educational benefits, opportunities, or performance, or with a student’s physical or psychological well- being. BHI may be motivated by an actual or a perceived personal characteristic including race, national origin, marital status, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, religion, ancestry, physical attributes, socio-economic status, familial status, or physical or mental ability or disability or is threatening or seriously intimidating; and, occurs on school property, at a school activity or event, or on a school bus; or, substantially disrupts the orderly operation of a school. BHI may be repeated or have the potential to be repeated.

      Class Cutting/Truancy

      Absence from school or classes for a school day or a portion of the school day without school authorization or parental consent.

      Conflicts

      Conflicts are not characterized by an imbalance of power. Conflicts are characterized by people having similar interests, but taking different positions.

      Destruction of Property

      The act or attempted act of willful destruction or defacement of school or private property either on or off the school grounds where appropriate public school administrators have jurisdiction over students.

      Disrespect Towards Others/Insubordination

      To willfully intimidate, insult, sexually harass, and/or engage in negative interaction by use of body language, verbally or in writing any member of the school staff, student body and community members. The refusal or willful failure to respond to or carry out a reasonable request by authorized school personnel.

      Disruption

      • Intentionally engaging in minor behavior that distracts from teaching/learning.
      • Intentionally and persistently engaging in minor behavior that distracts from teaching/learning (e.g., talking out of turn, chewing gum, throwing small items, horseplay).
      • Intentionally engaging in moderate to serious behavior that distracts from teaching and learning and directly affects the safety of others. (e.g., throwing harmful items, inciting a fight, disrupting a fire drill).

      Drugs (See pg. 26)


      Failure To Comply With Dress Code

      Failure to adhere to policy governing attire (see Administrative Procedure 5152).

      Expulsion

      The denial of the right of a student to be enrolled in or attend any regular program within the Prince George’s County Public Schools, such denial determined by the Chief Executive Officer or his/her designated representative.

      Explosives

      The possession, use or threatened use of any explosives or other such explosive instrument(s) capable of inflicting substantial bodily injury.

      False Alarms

      The act of initiating a fire alarm or initiating a report warning of a fire or an impending bombing or other catastrophe without cause.

       Fighting

      Physical aggression with another student that is designed to or likely to cause physical harm and/or substantial disruption to the education environment.
      • Intentionally shoving, pushing or otherwise being physically aggressive.
      • Intentionally engaging in a fight which may result in minor cuts, scrapes or bruises.
      • Intentionally engaging in a fight which may result in major injuries.

      Forgery

      The act of falsely signing the name of another person, or falsifying times, dates, grades, addresses or other data on school forms or correspondence directed to or from the school.

      Gambling

      The act of illegal betting for money or valuables.

      Gang or Criminal Gang

      A group or association of three or more persons whose members: (a) individually or collectively engage in a pattern of criminal activity; (b) have as one of their primary objectives or activities the commission of one or more underlying crimes, including acts by juveniles that would be underlying crimes if committed by adults; and (c) have in common an overt or covert organizational or command structure.

      Gang Activity

      The commission of, attempted commission of, conspiracy to commit or solicitation of two or more underlying crimes or acts by a juvenile that would be an underlying crime if committed by an adult.

      Group Fight

      Any physical attack or actual fighting by two or more students against another group of students consisting of two or more students. Students who have been identified as being involved in a group fight that resulted in serious bodily injury, and/or caused serious disruption of the school day or school environment, will be subject to disciplinary action.

      Indecent Exposure

      Deliberate exposure of the private parts of the body in a lewd or indecent manner in a public place on school grounds or at a school-related activity.

      Internet/Computer Misuse

      Use of Internet and/or computer resources for purposes other than legitimate educa- tional activity under the direction of profes- sional staff.

      Loitering

      Willful presence in a school building or restricted area of same at unauthorized times.

      Physical Attack

      Physically pushing, hitting or otherwise attacking another student, staff member or other person lawfully on school property. Any assault that results in serious bodily injury will be considered a Level V offense.

      Physical Attack on Adult

      The act of assaulting, or an attempt to assault, any administrator, teacher or other adult, either on school property or school bus while in attendance at any school spon- sored and supervised activity.

      Plagiarism

      Deliberately presenting the ideas, works or statements of another as one’s own, without acknowledgement of the source.

      Portable Electronic Device (PED)

      An electronic device that emits an audible signal, visual signal, vibration, displays a message, or otherwise summons the pos- sessor. This may include, but is not limited to: cell phones, paging devices, electronic emailing devices, radios, tape players, CD players, DVD players, video cameras, iPods or other MP3 players, portable video game players, laptop computers, personal digital assistants (PDAs), cameras, iPads, e-readers and any device that provides a connection to the Internet.

      Possession of Fireworks

      The possession, use or threatened use of any fireworks items such as lady fingers, sparklers, Roman candles or other similar items.

      Possession or Use of Weapons or Instruments Used As Such

      • Possessing an implement that is likely to cause serious bodily harm, without intent to use.
      • Possessing an implement that is likely to cause serious bodily harm, with intent to use.
      • Using as a weapon an implement that is likely to cause serious bodily harm.

      School Liaison

      The school liaison serves as a contact between teachers and students/parents/ guardians during out-of-school suspensions or expulsions.

      Sexual Activity

      Sexual activity or sexual misconduct (e.g., indecent exposure, engaging in sexual activity, soliciting and sexting.)

      Sexual Attack

      Intentionally engaging in a physical sexual attack on another.

      Sexual Harassment

      Behavior which includes, but is not limited to, verbal or physical sexual advances, pressure for sexual activity and unwelcome sexually motivated touching, pinching, threats or gestures of a sexual nature; obscene or profane language or humor; sexually oriented printed material; or de- manding sexual involvement accompanied by patting or intentional brushing against; repeated sexual verbal harassment.

      Sexual Misconduct

      Sexual harassment (e.g., unwelcome sexual advances; request for sexual favors; and other inappropriate verbal, written or physical conduct of a sexual nature).

      Shakedown/Strong Arm/Extortion

      The act of obtaining under duress or by threat, borrowing, or attempting to borrow, any money or thing of value from a person in the school, or at a school sponsored activity, unless both parties enter into the agreement freely and without the presence of an implied or express threat.

      Serious Bodily Injury

      Severe physical damage or harm caused to the structure or function of the body caused by an outside agent or force requiring extensive medical treatment or hospitaliza- tion. Such injuries would include substantial risk of death; temporary or permanent loss of, or loss of the use of, any body part; unconsciousness; disfigurement; and/or prolonged physical pain.

      Suspension

      The denial of the right of a student to attend school and participate in all school-related activities for a period of time determined by the principal or the Chief Executive Officer or designee. The student remains enrolled in the school system and is eligible to receive and make-up all homework/classwork missed during the period of suspension.

      Theft

      The act of taking or acquiring the property of others without their consent.

      Threat

      Aggressive verbal or written language or gestures directed towards a student, a Prince George’s County employee and/ or any other person lawfully on school property.

      Tobacco Violations

      The act of possessing, using or distributing tobacco or nicotine products (including but not limited to cigarettes, e-cigarettes, cigars, pipe, tobacco, snuff, chewing tobacco or smokeless tobacco) anywhere on school property and/or during school-sponsored events.

      Trespassing

      Unauthorized presence on school property after being warned to leave, or presence on school property after being warned not to come onto school property. This includes while a student is on suspension.

      Truancy

      Being unlawfully absent from school for 8 days or more in a quarter, 15 days in a semester, or 20 days in a school year.

      Unauthorized Departure from School

      Leaving school or a school-related activity without the permission from parent and appropriate school official. (For students who skip classes and leave school grounds, see Administrative Procedure 5113, Pupil Attendance and Absence.)

      Unauthorized Possession, Use or Distribution of Over-the-Counter Medication

      The possession, use or distribution of unregulated medications including, but not limited to, cold medications, cough syrup, pain medications, antihistamines, herbal supplements, vitamins, and other medications for sale without a physician’s prescription.

      Unauthorized Use of Electronic and/or Portable Communication Devices (PEDs)

      (Excluding use of a device in a school emergency or pre-approved situation.) Persistently having out a personal electronic device or using a PED without permission, or inappropriately using a PED after student has been warned. Devices include cell phones, music players, tablets, electronic gaming devices and other portable electronic devices.

      Back to Top >>



      Download PDF of Student Handbook and related forms

      Download PDF booklet and forms

      Back to Top >>