SUSPENSION AND EXCLUSION PROCEDURE

PR-4-8

PROCEDURAL DOCUMENT

Effective date: 4 September 2012

Rationale

Students need to have an environment which is conducive to learning. When the behaviour of some students is negatively affecting the positive environment, remedial action is necessary.  The ultimate sanction is exclusion. Even when other students are not directly affected there has to be provision for dealing with gross misconduct or continual disobedience of publicised standards of acceptable behaviour.

Purpose

  1. To ensure the school correctly follows the procedure for suspension as set out in Section 13-18 of the Education Act 1989 and Education (Stand-down, Suspension, Exclusion and Expulsion) Rules 1999.
  2. To ensure all students have assistance to remain at school and progress with their learning.
  3. To ensure there is a process for withdrawing from the school, students who present a threat to the safety and/or learning of others.

Guidelines

  1. The school has a clearly defined discipline programme with identified consequences for undesirable behaviour.  This programme is made known to all students and parents/caregivers.
  2. Guidance, counselling and/or referral to Resource Teachers of Learning and Behaviour Service or outside agencies will be given to any student who regularly behaves inappropriately.  The Principal will inform the parents and try to resolve the problem.
  3. If the undesirable behaviour continues, the student and the parents/caregivers will be advised that stand down or suspension may follow.
  4. If a student commits a very serious action, immediate suspension may follow.  This may be for a specified or unspecified period.
  5. Grounds for suspension are:
    -         Gross misconduct or continual disobedience which is harmful and a dangerous example to other students, or
    -         Because of the student’s behaviour it is likely that the student or others will be seriously harmed if the student is not suspended.
  6. If the undesirable behaviour continues, the student and the parents/caregivers will be advised that stand down or suspension may follow.
  7. If the undesirable behaviour continues, the student and the parents/caregivers will be advised that stand down or suspension may follow.
  8. The Principal can stand-down a student for a specified period of up to ten days per year, however only five days during a term.  The parents/caregivers, Board of Trustees and the Ministry of Education must be informed.
  9. The Principal may suspend a student more than once during a term or a year.  The suspension period is governed by the requirement that the Board of Trustees must meet within seven school days of the date of the suspension (or within ten calendar days if the suspension took place within seven school days of the end of term) to consider the suspension and decide the outcomes.
  10. The parents/caregivers of the student, or representatives, will be invited to attend the suspension meeting.  At least 48 hours before the Board meeting the Principal must give the student and parents the Principal’s Report to the Board on the suspension and any other material about the suspension to be presented at the meeting and the options available to the Board and possible outcomes of the suspension.
  11. If the student is under 16, the Board of Trustees may either:
    1. lift the suspension without conditions
    2. extend the suspension with reasonable conditions for a reasonable period
    3. exclude the student.
  12. If the Board of Trustees decides to exclude the student the Principal must try to enrol the student in another school within ten school days and if this is not successful, the Principal must inform the Ministry of Education who will take suitable action to enrol the student at a school.
  13. A student under the age of 16 cannot be expelled.
  14. Plateau School is committed to providing support, behaviour management programmes and advising of counselling agencies that are available to assist parents and caregivers.

Conclusion

These requirements imply that the Board of Trustees and the Principal will take all reasonable steps to ensure students have assistance to remain at school and progress with their learning.

Definitions

Stand-down means the formal removal of a student from school for a specified period.  Stand-downs of a particular student can total no more than five school days in a term or ten school days in a year.

Suspension means the formal removal of a student from school until the Board of Trustees decides the outcome at a suspension meeting.

The Principal is the only person who can make the decision to stand-down or suspend a student from the school. (Section 14(1)).

Exclusion means the formal removal of a student aged under 16 from the school and the requirement that the student enrol elsewhere.