Mike Town, one of Tesla STEM High School’s founding teachers, is a recipient of the Patsy Collins Award for Excellence in Education, Environment, and Community.
Student Discipline and Corrective Action
All students shall submit to the reasonable rules of the school district. Refusal to comply with written rules and regulations established for the governing of the school shall constitute sufficient cause for discipline, suspension, or expulsion. Corrective action and/or punishment for misconduct must reflect good faith effort on the part of the staff. For the purposes of the district's policies relating to corrective action or punishment:
- "Expulsion" is the exclusion from school or individual classes for indefinite period and is limited in duration to one year.
- "Emergency Expulsion" is the immediate exclusion from school or campus when the student's presence imposes an immediate and continuing danger to the student, other students or school personnel, or an immediate and continuing threat of substantial disruption to the educational process.
- "Suspension" is the exclusion from school, or individual classes for a specific period of time, after which the student has a right to return.
- A suspension is "short term" if it is for a period of 10 consecutive school days or less. Separate short-term suspension shall not total more than 10 school days in a semester for any student in grades K-4. Separate short-term suspension shall not total more than 15 days in a semester for a student in any other grade. Students' grades shall not be affected substantially as a result of a short-term suspension.
- Suspensions which exceed 10 consecutive school days are long-term suspensions.
- "Discipline" constitutes all other forms of corrective action or punishment, including brief exclusions from a class for not more than the remainder of the class period, or for up to two days or until a teacher–administrator conference is held, whichever is sooner, and including exclusion from any other type of activity conducted by or for the district. Discipline shall not adversely affect specific academic grade, subject, or graduation requirements, so long as all required work is performed.
As a general rule, no student shall be suspended for a short- or long‑ term unless other forms of corrective action or punishment reasonably calculated to modify his/her conduct have previously been imposed upon the student as a consequence of misconduct of the same nature, except in cases of serious or exceptional misconduct. An exception may be granted by an administrator and/or hearing officer when warranted by extenuating circumstances. Suspensions or expulsions shall be used only for serious instances of student misconduct. The District will make reasonable efforts to assist the student and his or her parents or guardians in returning to an education setting by the end of the long-term suspension or expulsion. Building administrators may petition the superintendent to exceed the one-year limitation for an expulsion when warranted based on public health or safety under rules to be developed by the Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI).
Any emergency expulsion shall be converted into a different form of discipline within ten school days of removal of the student from school, and the District shall provide a separate notice and right to a meeting with the principal, or his or her designee, for the conversion from the emergency expulsion to a different form of discipline.
Any student who has been suspended or expelled may apply for readmission at any time. The application shall be submitted to the principal of the school at which the student is enrolled. The application shall include:
- Reasons the student wants to return and why the request should be considered,
- A supporting statement from the parent or other adults.
- Evidence that supports the request, and
The principal shall consider the application, consult with the superintendent or designee, and advise the parent and student of his or her decision in writing. In cases of expulsion or in cases where a short-term or long-term suspension has been grieved or appealed, the application for readmission shall be submitted to the Director of School Support for consideration. The Director shall consider the application, consult with the principal and superintendent or designee, and advise the parent and student of his or her decision in writing.
A re-entry conference with the student and his or her parent or guardian will be held within twenty days of a long-term suspension or expulsion (and no later than five days before the student re‑enrolls) regardless of whether an appeal or request for early re-entry was made. The purpose of the re-entry conference is to discuss a plan to re-engage the student in a school program. In doing so, administrators shall consider shortening the suspension or expulsion, imposing other forms of corrective action, and using supportive interventions. The district shall also create a re-engagement and/or safety plan tailored to the student’s individual circumstances. The plan must consider the incident that led to the discipline and aid the student in taking the necessary steps to remedy that situation. Re-entry conferences are separate from petitions for re-admission or formal appeals.
Prior to the imposition of a corrective action or punishment upon a student with a disability who is eligible for a 504 and/or special education services, the school principal and special education staff and/or 504 coordinator who have knowledge of the student's handicapping condition shall determine if there is a causal relationship between the handicapping condition and the misconduct giving rise to the corrective action or punishment. When a relationship is found to exist, special education and/or 504 programming procedures shall be employed.
Corporal punishment, consisting of spanking a child, striking a child, or other physical or bodily punishment, whether administered by a teacher or administrator, is not permitted. Corporal punishment does not include the use of reasonable and moderate force to maintain order or to prevent a student from harming himself/herself, other students, school staff, and other persons or property. Corporal punishment does not include physical restraint or the use of aversive therapy as part of a behavior management program in a student’s individual education program which has been signed by the parent and is carried out according to district procedures in compliance with WAC 392‑172A-03120 through 392-172A-03135.
Once a student is expelled in compliance with district policy, the expulsion shall be brought to the attention of appropriate local and state authorities, including, but not limited to, the local juvenile authorities acting pursuant to the statutes dealing with the Basic Juvenile Court Act, in order that such authorities may address the student's educational needs.
No student shall be expelled, suspended, or disciplined in any manner for the performance of or failure to perform any act not related to the orderly operation of the school or school-sponsored activities or any other aspect of the educational process.
The superintendent shall have the authority to discipline, suspend, or expel students. The superintendent shall identify the conditions under which a teacher may exclude a student for all or any portion of a school day and shall also designate which staff have the authority to initiate or to impose discipline, suspensions, or expulsions.
RCW 28A. 600.010 - .022