Papillion La Vista Community Schools
Series Name: 5000 - Students
Topic: 5300 - Student Discipline
Policy: 5301 Student Conduct, Vandalism and Disruption
The Board expects both individual students and the entire student body to follow standards of conduct that maintain an optimum educational environment. Students are expected to respect and accept the authority of school personnel during class hours and during school related activities.
Students are expected to comply with established regulations and are subject to discipline, suspensions and expulsions as detailed in administrative procedure and student handbooks.
School district staff
will report student actions which violate this policy to law enforcement if:
1. The violation includes the possession of a firearm.
2. The violation results in child abuse.
3. It is a violation of state law that the administration believes cannot be adequately addressed solely by discipline from
the school district.
4. It is a violation of state law that endangers the health and welfare of staff or students.
5. It is a violation of state law that interferes with school purposes.
6. The report is required or requested by law enforcement or the county attorney.
Any actions taken by law enforcement personnel are outside of the sanctions imposed by school officials under this policy.
The Superintendent shall establish administrative procedures to ensure that the District will offer all expelled students an alternative school, class, or educational program, as is provided for in Nebraska State Law.
Except in cases of unavoidable accident, students will be expected to pay for all damage they cause to school property.
The Superintendent is authorized to initiate civil or criminal prosecution of any individual or group that damages school property or disrupts the orderly process of education.
Code of Conduct for Participants in Co-Curricular Activities
(Activity and Athletic Programs)
Statement of Beliefs:
This Code of Conduct is intended to promote responsible student behavior, which reflects positively upon the students, the school district, and the community. It applies to all students involved in co-curricular activities, which are defined as activity and athletic programs sponsored by and through the school district. It applies to student behavior during an outside activity period and/or athletic season, during the regular school year, and during summer months outside the regular school year.
The school district has established training and behavioral rules for the guidance and development of students who are involved in co-curricular activities. These rules are set out in the Code of Conduct, and any student who violates the provisions of the Code or receives a citation by law enforcement for a criminal offense shall be subject to the consequences set forth herein. Students involved in activities or athletics are expected to cooperate fully with school officials and law enforcement officers conducting an investigation into any possible violation of this Code of Conduct.
Category I involves behaviors during the school year, from the first day of classes in August until the regular school year ends in May. The following are prohibited:
- The use, possession, or being under the influence of any drug, drug paraphernalia, drug look-alike, controlled substance, tobacco, electronic cigarettes/vaporizing devices, or alcohol whether on or off school grounds, including citations for MIP, DUI and DWI.
- The use of anabolic steroids, or other performance enhancing drugs which have not been prescribed by a physician.
- Behavior deemed by school administrators to have discredited the reputation of the school district.
- Any other misconduct punishable under Nebraska law, other than a minor traffic violation.
Category I Consequences:
The first Category I violation will result in suspension from an activity or athletic event for two weeks or two contests, as determined appropriate by the administrator. The student must continue to participate in all practices required by the activity’s sponsor or coach during this suspension period, and the activities director or athletic director may require a conference with the student’s parent(s)/guardian(s) before the student is reinstated to the activity. Consequences for the first Category I violation will be imposed only during the school year in which the violation occurred.
A second Category I violation within the same school year will result in suspension from all activities or athletics for the remainder of the semester or a complete activity or athletic season, whichever is longer. Consequences for a second Category I violation will be imposed only during the school year in which both violations occurred.
A third Category I violation within the same school year will result in suspension from participation in all activities or athletics for one calendar year from the date of the third violation.
Students under out of school suspension cannot practice or participate in activities or athletics until the day after that suspension has been completed.
Category II involves serious criminal behavior for which consequences will be applied if the violation occurs at any time during the calendar year, including out-of-season and summer months. The following behavior is prohibited:
- The possession and transmittal, with the intention to sell it, of any drug, controlled substance, or alcohol.
- Driving under the influence of alcohol (DUI), or driving while intoxicated (DWI), in which serious property damage or bodily injury occurs to others.
- Receiving a second citation for DUI or DWI within a 12 month period.
- Other offenses punishable under Nebraska law, which are not specified in this listing but are deemed by school administrators to be serious criminal offenses.
The first Category II violation will result in suspension from all activities or athletics for the remainder of the semester or the activity or athletic season in which the violation occurs, whichever is longer.
The second Category II violation within a 12 month period will result in suspension from all activities or athletics for one calendar year from the date of the second violation.
(Category I and II):
If the violation occurs when the student is participating in an activity or athletic event, the consequence will begin immediately upon the determination that there is reasonable cause to believe that the student engaged in misconduct that violates this Code.
(Category I and II):
If the violation occurs when the student is not participating in an activity or athletic event, the consequence will begin on the first day of approved practice, competition and/or performance for the next co-curricular activity or athletic event in which the student chooses to participate.
When a District employee has reasonable cause to believe that a student has violated the Code of Conduct, they shall notify the activities director or athletic director. The appropriate director will initiate an investigation. As part of the investigation, the director or a designee will confer with the student. If the director determines that there is reasonable cause to believe that the student violated the Code of Conduct, they will inform the student of the decision. The director will provide a written communication to the parent(s)/guardian(s) that will include notice of the charge; the findings; the decision; the consequences to be imposed; and the appeal process. In cases where the decision involves removing a student from a team or for the remainder of a season, the activities director and/or athletic director will also provide the building principal and the Director of Student Services with a copy of the written notice sent to the parent(s)/guardian(s).
05-25-01)(Revised 03-01-06)(Revised 04-28-14)(Revised 5-23-16)(Revised 06-08-20)
Suspension and Expulsion:
- Any rule, which specifies a
particular action as a sanction for particular conduct, shall be binding
on all students, school officials, Board members, and hearing examiners.
- Expulsion is specified as a
sanction for particular conduct under rules and standards promulgated by
the Board only in cases where the Board has determined that the conduct
has the potential to seriously affect the health, safety, or welfare of
the students engaged in the conduct, other students, staff members, or any
other person, or to otherwise seriously interfere with the educational
- Rules shall be distributed to
students and their parent(s)/guardian(s) at the beginning of the school
year, or at the time of enrollment, if during the school year.
- Rules shall be posted in
conspicuous places in each school during the school year.
- Changes in rules and standards shall not take effect until reasonable effort has been made to distribute such changes to all students and parent(s)/guardian(s).
Types of Exclusion:
A. Short Term Suspension
1. Up to and including 5 school days.
B. Emergency Exclusion
1. Immediate exclusion if the student has a dangerous disease, or the student's conduct presents a threat to the physical
safety of the school community or is so extremely disruptive as to make temporary removal necessary to preserve the rights of other students to pursue an education.
C. Long Term Suspension
1. More than 5 school days but less than 20 school days.
1. Except as set forth below in Sections C-2 and C-3 under Long-Term Suspension, Expulsion and Mandatory
Reassignment, the expulsion of a student shall be for a period not to exceed the remainder of the semester in which
it took effect unless the misconduct occurred (a) within ten school days prior to the end of the first semester, in
which case the expulsion shall remain in effect through the second semester; or (b) within ten school days prior to
the end of the second semester, in which case the expulsion shall remain in effect for summer school and the first
semester of the following school year. Such action may be modified or terminated by the school district at any time
during the expulsion period.
E. Mandatory Reassignment
1. Involuntary transfer to another school within the system in connection with any disciplinary action.
A. Short-Term Suspension
1. The following behavior constitutes grounds for this type of exclusion:
a. Conduct set forth in Section C1, below under Long-Term Suspension, Expulsion and Mandatory Reassignment.
b. Any other violations of rules or standards of behavior adopted pursuant to law.
- The principal must make an investigation.
- The principal may suspend the student after the principal determines that it is necessary to help the student, to prevent interference with school purposes, or to further school purposes.
- Prior to such suspension, the student must be given oral or written notice of the charges, an explanation of the evidence against the student, and an opportunity to present the student's version.
- Within 24 hours of such additional time as is reasonably necessary following suspension, the principal must:
- Send a written statement to the student, the student's parent(s)/guardian(s), describing the student's conduct or rule violations.
- Set forth the reasons for the action taken in the written statement.
- Make a reasonable effort to confer with parent(s)/guardian(s) before or at the time the student returns to school.
- Any student who is suspended may be given an opportunity to complete any class work, including but not limited to, examinations missed during the period of suspension. Each school shall develop and adopt guidelines stating the criteria school officials shall use in determining whether and to what extent such opportunity for completion will be granted to suspended students. The guidelines shall be provided to the student and parent(s)/guardian(s) at the time of suspension.
1. A student may be subject to emergency exclusion for the following reason(s):
a. Dangerous communicable disease.
b. Creating a danger to self or others.
c. Preserving the rights of other students to pursue an education.
- An emergency exclusion shall be
based upon a clear, factual situation and last no longer than is necessary
to avoid the dangers set forth in Section B-1, a-c, above.
emergency exclusion for 5 school days or less shall be subject to the same
procedures set forth for short-term suspension in Section A 1 and 2 above. The
written notice sent within two school days to the student and the student's
parent(s)/guardian(s) shall include a description of the hearing procedures
provided by law and a hearing request form explaining that if the duration of
the emergency exclusion should exceed 5 school days, that the student, or the
student's parent(s)/guardian(s), may use such form to request a hearing. Copies
of the exclusion letter and supporting information will be forwarded to the
Superintendent on the same date.
- Extension of Exclusion: Pursuant to the Student Discipline Act, the principal has the
authority to exclude a student from school for up to five school days on an emergency
basis. If the superintendent or
superintendent’s designee determines that it is appropriate to consider the
extension of an exclusion beyond five days, such consideration shall be made
according to the procedures set forth below.
a. The superintendent or the superintendent’s designee shall notify the student’s parent(s) or guardian(s) that the principal
has proposed the extension of the exclusion. If the initial notice is oral, the superintendent shall confirm it in writing.
b. The student’s parent(s) or guardian(s) may submit an oral request for a hearing on the proposed extension of the
exclusion within two school days of receiving the initial notice. If the initial request for a hearing is oral, they shall
confirm the request in writing.
c. If the parent(s) or guardian(s) do not request a hearing within two school days of receiving oral or written notice, the
proposed extension of the exclusion shall automatically go into effect.
d. If the parent(s) or guardian(s) request a hearing, the superintendent shall appoint a hearing examiner upon receiving a
request for a hearing. The hearing examiner may be any person who did not bring charges against the student, is not to
be a witness at the hearing, and has no involvement in the charge.
e. The hearing examiner shall promptly give written notice of the time, date and place of the hearing. The hearing will be
held within five school days after the school district receives the initial oral or written request; provided, the hearing
may be held more than five school days after receipt of the request upon a showing of good cause. No hearing will be
held on less than two (2) school days’ notice unless otherwise agreed to by the student's parent(s) or guardian(s) and
f. If a hearing is requested, the principal may determine in their sole discretion that the student shall remain excluded
from school until the hearing officer makes a recommendation to the superintendent.
g. Prior to the hearing, the student and their parent(s) or guardian(s) shall have the right to examine and have school
officials explain the student's records and any affidavits that will be used by school officials at the hearing.
h. The hearing may be attended by the hearing examiner, the principal (or designee), the student, and the student's parents
or guardian(s). The student may be represented at this hearing by a representative of the family’s choice.
i. The student and their parent(s) or guardian(s) may ask any person with knowledge of the events leading up to the
sanction or with general knowledge of the student's character to testify on behalf of the student. If school personnel or
other students are requested to testify by the student’s parent(s) or guardian(s), the hearing officer shall endeavor to
help obtain the presence of such witnesses at the hearing.
j. The student and their parent(s) or guardian(s) have the right to request in advance of the hearing the issues which the
administration will propose in support of the extension, and the general nature of the testimony of any administrative or
k. The student and witnesses may be excluded at the discretion of the hearing examiner in accordance with state statutes.
The student may speak in their own defense and may be questioned on such testimony but may choose not to testify.
l. The principal or their designee shall present evidence supporting the recommended extension of the exclusion.
Witnesses will give testimony under oath of affirmation and may be questioned.
m. The hearing examiner shall prepare a report of their findings and recommendations and forward the report to the
n. The superintendent will review the hearing examiner's report and determine whether to extend the exclusion. They
shall have the decision delivered or sent by registered or certified mail to the student, student's parent(s), or
guardian(s). If the superintendent decides to extend the exclusion, the extension will take effect immediately.
Suspension, Expulsion and Mandatory Reassignment
1. The following behavior constitutes grounds for these types of exclusions when it occurs on school grounds, in a vehicle
contracted for school purposes, or at a school event or otherwise as set forth in paragraph, below:
- Use of violence, force, coercion, threat, intimidation or similar conduct in a manner that constitutes a substantial interference with school purposes.
- Willfully causing or attempting to cause substantial damage to private or school property, stealing, or attempting to steal private or school property of substantial value, or repeated damage or theft involving private or school property of small value.
- Causing or attempting to cause physical injury to any person. Personal injury caused by accident, self-defense, or other action undertaken on the reasonable belief that it was necessary to protect some other person, shall not constitute a violation of this subdivision.
- Threatening or intimidating any student for the purpose of, or with the intent of, obtaining money or anything of value from such student.
- Engaging in the unlawful possession, purchase or attempted purchase, selling, dispensing or use of a controlled substance or look-a-like, or alcoholic liquor, or being under the influence of a controlled substance or alcoholic liquor.
- Public indecency, as defined by law, except that this subdivision shall apply only to students at least 12 years of age but less than 19 years of age.
- Sexually assaulting or attempting to sexually assault any person or if a complaint has been filed by a prosecutor in a court of competent jurisdiction alleging that the student has sexually assaulted or attempted to sexually assault of any person, including sexual assaults or attempted sexual assaults which occur off school grounds not at a school function, activity, or event. For purposes of this paragraph, sexual assault shall mean sexual assault in the first degree and sexual assault in the second degree as defined in Nebraska Revised Statutes Sections 28-319 and 28-320 as such statutes now provide or may hereafter from time to time be amended.
- Engaging in any other activity forbidden by the state law which activity constitutes danger to other students or interferes with school purposes.
- A repeated violation of any rules validly established pursuant to law if such violations constitute a substantial interference with school purposes.
- Knowingly possessing, handling, or transmitting any object or material that is ordinarily or generally considered a weapon, including knives, fireworks, throwing stars, brass knuckles, stun guns, B.B. guns and pellet guns.
- Engaging in bullying as defined in state statute.
- Engaging in prohibited use of electronic devices. Students shall not use electronic devices for recording and/or transmitting (video, audio, photos) without direct approval and consent of the person(s) being recorded, other than recordings of persons participating in school activities that are open to the public or unless the recording is a required accommodation in the student’s IEP or 504 plan.
- Possessing, using, selling, or dispensing tobacco, drug paraphernalia, or tobacco imitation substances or packaging, regardless of form, including cigarettes, chewing tobacco, and any other forms of tobacco or imitation, such as electronic cigarettes, vapor pens, etc.
- Mandatory expulsion for firearms, explosives, or weapons and suspension or expulsion for intentionally causing an injury to employee, volunteer, or student.
- The following behavior constitutes grounds for mandatory expulsion:
- Knowingly possessing, handling, transmitting, using, intimidating with, or threatening to use any object or material that is ordinarily or generally considered a firearm or explosive, including guns, firearms and pipe bombs.
- Using or threatening to use knives and/or chemical substances (including but not limited to: mace, pepper guns, and bleach), and any other object that could be used to injure another person.
- The expulsion of a student for the knowing and intentional possession, use or transmission of a firearm as defined in 18 U.S.C. 921, shall be for a period of one year.
- The expulsion of a student for the knowing and intentional use of force in causing or attempting to cause personal injury to a school employee, school volunteer, or student, as outlined in C-1-c above shall be for a period not to exceed the remainder of the school year in which it took effect if the misconduct occurs during the first semester. If the expulsion takes place during the second semester, the expulsion shall remain in effect for summer school and may remain in effect for the first semester of the following year.
- Any expulsion that remains in
effect during the first semester of the following school year shall be
automatically scheduled for review by the hearing examiner before the
beginning of the school year with notice to the student and the student's
- Suspension and mandatory expulsion for knives and chemicals.
- The following behavior may constitute grounds for short-term suspension:
- Knowingly possessing, handling, or transmitting knives and/or chemical substances (including, but not limited to pepper guns and bleach), and any other object or substance that could be used to injure another person.
- The following behavior constitutes grounds for mandatory expulsion:
- A second or subsequent
violation of 3(a) (1) within four school years.
- The following procedure is required for long-term suspension, expulsion, and mandatory reassignment listed in Section C.
- The principal must file a written charge and summary of the evidence supporting the charge with the Superintendent on the date of the decision to exclude.
- Within 2 school days, written notice must be sent by registered or certified mail by the principal to the student and the student's parent(s)/guardian(s) informing them of their rights. A copy will be forwarded to the Superintendent on the same date.
- This notice shall include the following:
- Rule violated and a summary of the evidence.
- Penalty, which the principal has recommended.
- Notice of the student's rights to a hearing upon request.
- The District's hearing and appeal procedures.
- A statement concerning the right to examine the student's academic and disciplinary records and any affidavits to be used at a hearing.
- A statement concerning the right to know the identity of witnesses who will appear at a hearing, and the substance of their testimony.
- A form on which the student
and the student's parent(s)/guardian(s) may request a hearing.
- When a notice of intent to
discipline a student by long-term suspension, expulsion, or mandatory
reassignment is filed with the Superintendent, the student may be
suspended by the principal until the date the long-term suspension,
expulsion, or mandatory reassignment takes effect if no hearing is
requested or, if a hearing is requested, the date the hearing examiner
makes the report of his or her findings and a recommendation of the action
to be taken to the Superintendent, if the principal determines that the
student must be suspended immediately to prevent or substantially reduce
the risk of (a) interference with an educational function or school
purpose or, (b) a personal injury to the student himself or herself, other
students, school employees, or school volunteers.
- The following preliminary procedure must be followed if a hearing is requested within 5 school days of the receipt of notice:
- The Superintendent must appoint a hearing examiner.
- The hearing examiner must give written notice to the principal, the student, and the student's parent(s)/guardian(s) of the time and place for the hearing. No less than 2 days actual notice must be given.
- The hearing examiner must meet the following criteria:
- Must not have brought the charges against the student.
- Shall not be a witness at the hearing.
- Must have no involvement in the charge and must be impartial.
- Must be available to answer any questions relative to the hearing.
- The following rules apply when a hearing is conducted:
- The following shall attend the hearing: the hearing examiner, the student, the student's representative (if any), the student's parent(s)/guardian(s), and, if necessary, the counsel for the school board.
- Witnesses may be present only when giving information at the hearing.
- Anyone may be excluded by the hearing examiner if they disrupt an orderly hearing.
- The student may speak in the student's defense and question witnesses; the student may choose not to testify; the student may be excluded when discussing the student's emotional problems or psychological evaluation.
- The principal shall present statements, in affidavit form, to the hearing examiner of anyone having information about the student's conduct and the student's records, only if these have been made available to the student; the student's parent(s)/guardian(s) or representative prior to the hearing. Upon request, the student's records shall be explained and interpreted to the student, parent(s)/guardian(s) or representative prior to the hearing.
- The hearing examiner is not bound by rules of evidence or other courtroom procedure.
- The following persons may ask persons to testify at the hearing: the student, the student's parent(s)/guardian(s) or representative, the principal and hearing examiner.
- The testimony shall be under oath; the hearing examiner shall administer the oath.
- The persons listed in (g), above, shall have the right to question any witness giving information at the hearing.
- Any person giving testimony is given the same immunity from liability as a person testifying in a court case.
- The proceeding shall be recorded at District expense.
- If more than one student is charged with violation of the same rule and acted in concert, a single hearing may be held unless student interests may be substantially prejudiced as determined by the hearing examiner.
- Report of the Hearing Examiner
- The report shall include the hearing examiner's findings, a recommendation of the action to be taken, and the reasons therefore in terms of the needs of both the student and the school board.
- The report shall be reviewed by the Superintendent who may change, revoke, or impose the sanctions recommended. In no case may the Superintendent impose a sanction more severe than the hearing examiner's recommendations.
- Written notice of the recommendations by the hearing examiner and the Superintendent's determination shall be sent by registered mail or personal delivery to the student and the student's parent(s)/guardian(s).
- Upon receipt of the written notice, the Superintendent's determination shall take effect.
- The Record and the Appeal
- The record shall consist of the charge, the notice, the evidence presented, the hearing examiner's findings and recommendations, and the action of the Superintendent.
- On appeal to a court, the record shall also consist of any additional evidence taken and any additional action taken in the case and shall also include the rules and regulations of the Board relied upon by the District in its determination to suspend, reassign, or expel the student.
- Appeal to the School Board may be made within 7 school days following receipt of written notice of the determination of the Superintendent, by the student, the student's parent(s)/guardian(s), by a written request, filed with the Secretary of the Board or with the Superintendent.
- Hearing of the School Board
- The following rules will apply when there is a hearing in front of the School Board:
- It may be held either before the Board or a committee of the Board consisting of not less than three members.
- It must be held within a period of 10 school days after request; such time for hearing may be changed by mutual agreement of the student and Superintendent.
- The appeal shall be made on the record, but new evidence may be admitted to avoid substantial unfairness. The new evidence shall be made a part of the record.
- After examining the records and taking new evidence, if any, the Board, or the designated committee thereof, may withdraw to deliberate privately upon the record and new evidence.
- When the Board deliberates, it may reopen the hearing to receive additional evidence subject to the right of all parties to be present.
- The Board may alter the Superintendent's recommendations, but may never impose more severe sanctions.
- Final determination of the Board shall be personally delivered or sent by registered mail to the student and the student's parent(s)/guardian(s).
- An appeal of the Board's decision must be taken to the district court of the county where the action is taken. Appeal must be made within 30 days after service of the final decision of the Board.
Nothing in this procedure shall preclude the student, the student's parent(s)/guardian(s), or representative from discussing and settling the matter with appropriate school personnel prior to the hearing stage.
The District shall have alternative education available for expelled and excluded students. The alternative will be developed by the Director of Human Resources and Student Services and it will be shared with parent(s)/guardian(s) and students. The alternative education for expelled students shall enable the student to continue work for credit. If the student fails to meet the conditions of the learning program the District may terminate the program after a due process hearing. Students can earn credit for work completed. Should the parent(s)/guardian(s) refuse to participate in the alternative education, the District has no further obligation.
Procedure Revision History: (Established 05-25-01)(Revised 10-27-08)(Revised 11-12-12)(Revised 5-23-16)(Revised 06-08-20)
Suspension and Expulsion of Students with Disabilities
Suspension and expulsion of verified or eligible disabled students under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act and Title 92, Nebraska Administrative Code, Chapter 51, shall comply with District procedures and state and federal law.
Refer to procedure 6301
Suspension and Expulsion of Students
Under Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973
Suspension and expulsion of eligible disabled students under Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 shall comply with district procedures and state and federal law.
Procedure Revision History: (Established 05-25-01)(Revised 06-28-94)(Revised 08-12-96)(Revised 05-11-98)(Revised 01-27-04)(Revised 5-23-16)(Revised 6-8-20)
Policy Revision History: (Adopted 09-09-91)(Revised 06-13-94)(Revised 08-12-96) (Revised 05-11-98)(Revised 09-22-08)
Revisions History: (Adopted 09-09-91)(Revised 06-13-94)(Revised 08-12-96) (Revised 05-11-98)(Revised 09-22-08)