Discipline Policy and Procedure Manual

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Dance Culture Center for Performing Arts seeks to train the minds, develop the character, and enrich the lives of its students through quality artistic programs. Its goal is to help students gain self-awareness and discover their true purpose in a supportive environment.

Purpose

"In a word, grow up... Live out your identity. You're valuable. Live generously and graciously toward others."

Philosophy of Discipline

DCC-PA strives to uphold a community guided by certain prudent rules which we believe are beneficial in establishing an atmosphere conducive to artisctic growth and order. Families of this community are expected to abide by school principles and treat one another with respect. DCC-PA families are asked to accept the responsibilities of admission by respecting and supporting its educational distinctive and its standards of conduct.

A SUMMARY OF GOOD SCHOOL BEHAVIOR – Be at the right place, at the right time, with the right materials, in a quiet manner, with an expectant and respectful attitude.

AN ACCURATE DEFINITION OF RESPECT – “Doing exactly WHAT you’re told to do, WHEN you’re told to do it, with a RIGHT HEART ATTITUDE.”

Discipline Policy Overview

The purpose of discipline in our school is two-fold, to bring the student to maturity, and, second, to develop qualities of good citizenship. To help attain these goals, certain standards of conduct are established. Students are asked to discipline themselves in relation to this code because the best form of discipline is self-discipline. Indeed, the goal of all outward discipline is self-discipline within the framework of positive relationships between them.

Positively, the school seeks to cooperate with the home in forming good habits in the student such as cheerful obedience to authority, courtesy and respect for others, responsibility, cleanliness and orderliness, truthfulness and honesty, morally correct conduct, and wise use of time, talents and material possessions. DCC-PA seeks, in other words, to build positive character traits into the lives of its students and pursues an active program in doing so, both through instruction and example. A rebellious spirit or negative attitude, which is unchanged after much effort by the faculty, can be a poor influence on other students. Continued deliberate disobedience to a teacher or to school rules has an adverse effect upon the school’s reputation.

As an expression of DCC-PA's mission, the school discipline policy is intended to support the maturation process for students, and to serve as an extension of the home. As such, the primary purpose of the discipline process is to produce growth in students while maintaining an environment of learning and order, providing a support to parents, and reflecting principles of conduct and influence. In keeping with this purpose, the principles that provide the foundation for the discipline policy are as follows:

  • The responsibility of parents for the education of their children
  • Respect of authority
  • The principle of behavior and consequences
  • Confrontation, restoration, and separation

Under the guidelines of these principles, the goal of DCC-PA through the disciplinary process is to:

  • Work alongside of parents within the process of discipline
  • Provide an environment of order and respect that promotes an atmosphere conducive to learning
  • Apply necessary and appropriate consequences for choices
  • Guide in the rebuilding of relationships with DCC-PA, its employees and its students
  • Use relational influence to produce growth, correction, and right choices
  • Do so in a context that seeks the best interest of both the involved parties and the student body as a whole

As a general rule, classroom actions which evidence disrespect, lack of courtesy, general disturbance, abuse of permission, lateness and other offenses shall be handled by the teacher. Situations that the teacher evaluates as chronic, flagrant, or otherwise worthy of special handling will be referred to the Administrator. These situations will be dealt with as seems most helpful to the individual and the student body as outlined under the guidelines as outlined within this document.

Code of Conduct

In order to best fulfill the goals of the discipline process, DCC-PA has established a Code of Conduct that defines expected student behavior, and establishes the procedure and process for addressing disciplinary matters. Plese be aware that student conduct and behavior outside of DCC-PA can affect a student’s standing at DCC-PA as well as the reputation of DCC-PA, therefore it is the expectation of the administration that students adhere to the Code of Conduct at all times. It is therefore also understood that violations of the Code of Conduct both inside and outside of school, including breaks from school, may be addressed as a disciplinary concern by the administration. Students are specifically considered to be under school jurisdiction at any time at which they are under the direct supervision of DCC-PA and its employees, including when riding a school bus or attending a school function or activity.

Students are expected to demonstrate the following behaviors and characteristics:

  • Ingegrity in the keeping of one’s word, speaking the truth, carrying out responsibility and respecting authority
  • Respect for self, DCC-PA and its employees and students, and the property of others
  • Courtesy extended in all relationships – student to student or student to teacher/staff
  • Respect of the property, supplies, and equipment of DCC-PA, as well as respect of personal items
  • Preparation for class and readiness to learn

Prohibited Activities

In order to inform our DCC-PA family the following prohibited in-school activities (including time spent on buses or in transport to activities), for which disciplinary penalties will be assessed, are provided. While the actions described below represent a cross section of activities, no compilation can be all inclusive and students are expected to refrain from behavior that would be characteristic of the areas mentioned below.

Attendance Parameters

  • Unexcused tardiness to school or class
  • Leaving school campus without permission
  • Leaving class without permission
  • Being in locations where students are not normally allowed
  • Excessive time out of class
  • Failure to inform administration when leaving early
  • Unexcused absences

Dress Code

  • Failure to conform to the expected dress code
  • Unapproved substitutions of attire

Careless Behavior

  • Running in the halls or in the classroom
  • Horseplay
  • Improper behavior on the bus*
  • Reckless driving on school property or at any school event*

Classroom/School Etiquette

  • Disruptive behavior that impedes the educational process
  • The use of cellular phones and other electronic devices during unapproved times
  • Eating food or candy during class other than when approved by teacher
  • Other items: Any item that disrupts a class (such as a wristwatch alarm or cell phone) will be taken to administration. Usually for the first offense, the student will be allowed to pick up the object from administration at the end of the school day. For subsequent offenses, parents will be required to pick up a confiscated item. They must pick it up within one month or the item will be discarded.
  • Unauthorized possession of electronic equipment
  • Misbehaving in class (including talking out of turn) or disturbing the class

Physical/Inappropriate Behavior

  • Inappropriate public displays of romantic affection (i.e., holding hands, kissing, excessive hugging)
  • The possession and/or distribution of pornographic materials and information, including the distribution of sexually suggestive material via cell phones, computers, or any other electronic devices
  • Possession of impure or suggestive literature, writing, symbols, drawings, or recordings (audio or video). Distribution of such will result in a more severe penalty
  • Sexually harassing another individual (see Antiharassment Policy)

Harassment/Intimidation

  • Sexual harassment including all acts of a sexual nature, whether verbal or physical, which are unsolicited, unwelcome, inappropriate, and/or demeaning, which interfere with an individual’s performance or which create an intimidating, hostile or offensive atmosphere
  • Physical harassment, including threats or intimidation of any nature, or inappropriate verbal or physical conduct which creates a hostile, offensive or fearful environment. Examples of threats or intimidation include, but are not limited to, provoking a fight, fighting, bullying, acts that inflict injury or damage, and/or acts intented to control by fear and/or intimidation.

Verbal Behavior

  • Language and/or gestures that are vulgar, obscene, offensive, derogatory or disrespectful will result in disciplinary action. The student’s talk should build up, not put them down.

Dishonesty

  • Dishonesty in any form, including lying, theft, cheating, and plagiarism (note: indication of copyright infringement will result in an automatic suspension
  • Gambling

Disrespectful Behavior

  • Rebellious or disrespectful attitude
  • Flagrant disrespect and disobedience
  • Littering
  • Disturbance or rude behavior in assemblies
  • Circumventing school procedure, including short-circuiting the school-home communication process
  • Defacing of any kind of school, student, or faculty property
  • Non-compliance with regulations pertaining to transportation procedures
  • Direct disobedience to any teacher or Administrator
  • Deliberate destruction or damage to school, student, and/or faculty property
  • Disrespect by word or action toward any faculty, staff member, or student
  • Display of any advertisements of items in whatever form (e.g., posters/stickers on books, lockers or on any personal possessions brought into the school) that are in conflict with the values of the school as stated in our objectives

Prohibited Items and Activities

  • Use or possession of weapons and/or dangerous items (i.e., guns, knives (including pocket knives), explosive devices, etc.) A zero-tolerance policy is in place on bringing any type of such weapons or explosives to school.
  • The use and/or possession of tobacco, alcoholic beverages, illegal drugs, and the abuse of prescription medication. Violations of this policy may also result in random drug testing, per DCC-PA procedures, at the expense of the student’s family. The possession or use of any illicit drugs, alcoholic beverages, tobacco, etc. at school or any school function will be considered grounds for suspension and possible expulsion. Because of the harmful nature of these activities, the continuance in our school of any student involved in such activities in or out of school is in serious question. Students involved in the use, possession, or selling of drugs, alcohol or tobacco may also be turned over to the proper authorities.

Disciplinary Process

Disciplinary action will be taken for infractions of school policy and rules. These may include detention, probation, suspension, or as a final resort, expulsion. Most disciplinary issues are managed by the teacher in the classroom, and the process can involve any of the following, separately or in combination as appropriate.

  • Personal conference with the teacher
  • Notification of behavior problems to parents
  • Detention- written assignment/orthopedic exercizes during class time
  • Student conference with the Administrator
  • A parent-teacher-administrator conference More extreme or persistent cases of misconduct will be managed by the administration and treated with one or more of the following measures:
  • Detention
  • Conference with the Administrator and/or teacher
  • Probation, combined with appropriate application of consequences relevant to the offense
  • In-school suspension- activities include, but are not limited to being responsible for the organization and cleanliness of school property
  • Out-of-school suspension
  • Withdrawal- temporary removal until a family plan of action is established with administration. Student will return on probationary status
  • Expulsion A formal report to record all infractions will be retained within the student’s school file outlining the nature of the infraction, how the issue was addressed, and the action plan used to achieve resolution. Follow up steps will be amended to the initial report. A detailed grievance procedure for issues which arise pertaining to the implementation of the above process as outlined in the Parent-Student Policy and Procedures Manual.

Disciplinary Probation

Disciplinary probation is designed to alert the student and his or her parents to areas of his or her life that need special attention. Students may be placed on disciplinary probation by the recommendation of the faculty and the approval of the Administrator for a specified period of time for actions which include, but are not limited to, continued deliberate disobedience, continued and persistent rebellious attitude, negative influence on other students, artistic progress that is unacceptable because the student is not working up to his or ability, committing a serious breach of conduct inside or outside the school, failure by students and parents to comply with school policies.

A conference with the student and his or her parents is held at the beginning of the probation to discuss the reasons for the probation. Teachers who wish to participate in the conference may do so or they may be requested by the Administrator to attend. A letter stating the results of the conference and the reasons for the probation will follow this conference. During the probation period the student will be restricted from participating in activities outside the classroom. In cases where the probation follows a serious breach of conduct, a second major incident of misconduct during the disciplinary probation period will result in the suspension or expulsion of the student. If the offense occurs during the second semester, the student may be admitted the following year only under disciplinary probation. During the restriction the teachers will periodically review the progress of the student. The Administrator will then decide whether the student shall be returned to the status of a regular student or will recommend expulsion from the school to the DCC-PA School Board. Disciplinary probation is sincerely intended as an intermediate step for the student to reach his or her potential. If there is no progress in attitude, behavior, or general artisctic achievement, the student will be asked to withdraw from the school or he or she will be expelled by action of the DCC-PA Board.

Suspension and Expulsion

Suspension is the responsibility of the Administrator and may be used for serious volations or repeated violations of school rules. Examples of such conduct include cheating, smoking, drinking, illegal use of drugs or the possession of drugs, etc. Students involved in the use, possession, or selling of drugs or alcohol may be turned over to the proper authorities. A student may be suspended for a period of one to ten days at the discretion of the Administrator. The following violations of the Code of Conduct will result in an immediate suspension fom school, pending a more thorough investigation of the matter, and may result in withdrawal or expulsion:

  • The use and/or possession of tobacco, alcoholic beverages, or illegal drugs, and the abuse of prescription medication
  • Possession of weapons and/or dangerous items
  • Repeated dishonesty
  • Flagrant disrespect and disobedience
  • Leaving campus without permission
  • The possession and/or distribution of pornographic materials and information
  • Harassment in any form, both physical and/or sexual in nature
  • Vandalism
  • Continued willfull disobedience, misconduct, disrespect
  • Any action taken by a student that disturbs the privacy or invades the private property of a teacher or Administrator at his or her home, or that affects his or her private property at school.

During the suspension period the student must keep up with his or her school work. All assignments or tests missed during the period of suspension must be completed. Students may not practice or participate in extracurricular events for the duration of the suspension, nor may they be involved in after school activities during that time. In addition, students may not attend school activities on the day(s) of suspension. A parent-student-administrator conference will be held on the day the student returns to school and the student will be placed on probation for a period of three weeks or more. Expulsion is the responsibility of the DCC-PA Board. Students may be expelled from school when major moral or social offenses have been committed and after other disciplinary procedures have failed. The Administrator will refer students who have been placed on suspension, repeated suspensions or disciplinary probation to the Board. The Board will discuss the continuance in our school of any student recommended for expulsion.