THOMAS L. KENNEDY SECONDARY SCHOOL
CODE OF CONDUCT: YOUR RIGHTS AND RESPONSIBILITIES
T.L. Kennedy Secondary School recognizes that students achieve their best when they feel safe, nurtured, welcomed, respected and included. We are committed to providing a healthy learning and working environment to support student success by promoting responsibility, respect, civility, academic excellence and good citizenship. For learning to be successful, schools must be free of negative factors such as bullying, discrimination, intimidation, hateful words and actions as well as physical violence in any form.
In the Peel District School Board, we understand that equity and excellence go hand-in-hand. One of the core goals in our strategic plan, the Report Card for Student Success, is the following:
"Achieve equity for students and staff—we provide equity of access and opportunity for students and staff to learn, work and develop in an environment that is nurturing, engaging, respectful and inclusive."
One of the Peel Board's projects is the implementation of six core character attributes. The attributes are taught in school, but they are also the basis of the Board's working relationships – they help to create a positive climate for learning and working.
We want our staff and students to be:
· Caring – showing compassion and kindness towards others
· Cooperative – working collaboratively with others for a common purpose
· Honest – being truthful, trustworthy and sincere in your speech and actions
· Inclusive – treating everyone fairly and equitably
· Respectful – treating others, yourself and the environment with high regard and value
· Responsible – being accountable and reliable in your actions and commitments
We believe that parents, the school and community must all work together to help students learn to become responsible members of society, being sensitive to the diversity, cultural and special needs of individual students. We must clearly demonstrate respect for social justice and human rights, and promote the values needed to develop responsible members of a democratic society.
The Code of Conduct for T.L. Kennedy Secondary School aligns with and supports Ontario's Equity and Inclusive Education Strategy, the Peel Board's Human Rights policy and Antiracism and Ethnocultural Equity policy.
OUR CODE OF CONDUCT
The T.L. Kennedy Secondary School Code of Conduct applies to all members of the school community including students, parents, guardians, volunteers, visitors and school staff, whether they are on school property, on school buses, at school-authorized events or activities, or in any other situation that may impact the school climate.
All members of the school community have a responsibility to respect and honour the school Code of Conduct, to demonstrate age and developmentally appropriate social behaviour and to take responsibility for their own actions.
All members of the school community are expected to:
· demonstrate honesty and integrity
· treat one another with dignity, respect and fairness, regardless of their race, ancestry, place of origin, colour, ethnicity, creed, citizenship, religion, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, age, ability, socioeconomic status, or any other attribute
· take appropriate action to help those in need, seeking assistance to resolve conflict constructively and respectfully
· show proper care and regard for school property and the property of others
Parent and guardian responsibilities include:
· taking an active role in their son/daughter's education by ensuring that he/she is prepared for learning, including punctual and regular attendance, promptly reporting authorized absences and late arrivals, and communicating regularly with the school
· reviewing the school Code of Conduct with their son/daughter and helping him/her follow school rules
· helping their child understand that it is not appropriate to tease or bully others
· monitoring their child’s internet use and taking responsibility for his/her behaviour when accessing electronic resources from home
Student responsibilities include:
· demonstrating a commitment to learning through punctual and regular attendance, being prepared and ready to learn
· practising honesty and integrity including, but not limited to, not participating in or encouraging plagiarism, misrepresentation of original work, use of unauthorized aids, theft of evaluation instruments, or false representation of identity
· following school rules and taking responsibility for his/her own actions
· refraining from bringing anything to school, or using anything inappropriately, that may risk the safety of themselves or others
· showing proper care and regard for school and community property, as well as only visiting other schools for school-related and authorized activities
Staff responsibilities include:
· helping students achieve to the best of their ability, developing self-worth, and being responsible citizens
· maintaining order in the school and holding everyone to the highest standard of respectful and responsible behaviour
· communicating regularly and meaningfully with parents/guardians
· establishing a range of clear, fair and developmentally appropriate interventions, supports, direct skill instruction and consequences for unacceptable behaviour including but not limited to homophobia, gender-based violence, sexual harassment and inappropriate sexual behaviour
· responding to and reporting behaviours which may have a negative impact on school climate
ATTENDANCE AND PUNCTUALITY
It is your right to choose your classes, as part of your high school program. It is your responsibility to attend all classes on time, every day. Absences from school must be authorized by a parent/guardian and confirmed by a note signed by your parent/guardian and/or a phone call to the attendance secretary. Students who arrive late or leave early because of an appointment must sign in/out with a note through the attendance secretary. Frequent absences and/or lates will affect your progress in school and may jeopardize your academic success. Unauthorized lates/absences will result in contact with home, lunch or after-school detentions, referral to the administration, community service, suspension and/or removal from a course or school. It is your responsibility to apply for a leave of absence if you know that you will be away for an extended period of time. The form and instructions are available in the main office. You are responsible for all missed work. It is also mandatory for you to be in school for all in-class summative days and formal examination days.
It is your right to attend a school that is clean and socially responsible with regard to recycling. It is your responsibility to dispose of garbage in the containers provided and recyclable materials in the appropriate containers; to consume all food in the cafetorium; not to deface or damage school property.
COMMUNICATION WITH ADULT STUDENTS (age 18 and older):
Please be advised that Peel District School Board school staff will communicate with the parent(s)/guardian(s) of an adult student (age 18 or older) regarding educational matters unless and until that adult student provides direction in writing that all further communication by school staff regarding education matters must be with that student only. If you have any questions regarding this practice or if you wish to provide written direction to the school, please speak to your Vice-Principal or Principal.
COURSE SELECTION. LOAD and CHANGES
It is your right to choose courses which best meet your abilities, interests and future educational or career goals. It is your right, once you have earned a minimum of 23 credits as a senior student, to be allowed to have a study period. Students on study periods are expected to be either in the library or the cafeteria. It is your responsibility to select courses wisely and once you have committed to them, to follow through with your commitment.
The focus for students at T. L. Kennedy is on academic achievement. In order for you to benefit from a full academic program, you will be required to carry eight courses in your daytime schedule in one calendar year or in two full semesters. Any exceptions to this must be approved by the appropriate administrator. Night School and International Language courses are not considered in the calculation of this course load, as these are optional courses offered outside the regular day school program. You and your parents should consult a guidance counsellor on the advisability of registering in these courses.
COURSE CHANGE PROCEDURES
The school timetable is constructed in the spring preceding each academic year. As a result, staffing requirements, the number of classes per course and class sizes are fixed well in advance of the school year. Opportunity to adjust course selection is available to students between February and June to ensure that students have appropriate programs for the new school year.
Course changes will be made only for the following reasons and if space permits:
1. Lack of pre-requisite course requirements (e.g., due to having failed a course)
2. Credits obtained through Summer or Night School necessitating course selection adjustment
3. The student is in their final year and the course is a required pre-requisite for a post-secondary program or diploma.
It is your right to express your individual taste and style through your clothing.
It is your responsibility to dress in a manner that is appropriate for a student at a high school, and that is not offensive to others. The following are inappropriate for school wear:
· hats, caps, toques, hoods, coats and other outerwear ● bandannas, headbands and other gang insignia
· exposure of visible undergarments (e.g., pants are to be worn on the waist)
· exposure of cleavage, bare back and bare midriff ● short shorts or beach wear
· profanity, racist, sexist and demeaning symbols or slogans including insignia referring to drugs, alcohol or violence
Inappropriate items may be confiscated and/or the student may be required to return home to change. Subsequent offences will result in the escalation of consequences. Remember the three Cs of dress code: Be clean, comfortable and covered.
FIELD TRIPS, EXCURSIONS, ASSEMBLIES, BUS TRAVEL AND EXTRA-CURRICULAR ACTIVITIES
It is your right, as an extension of your learning, to enjoy the opportunity to participate in field trips, excursions, presentations, assemblies and extra curricular activities. It is your responsibility to follow the pattern of respectful, courteous behaviour that is a part of our daily routine and to observe all school rules for the duration of these activities.
For those students who access school bus transportation to arrive at school, and those who use school buses for school field trips, it is your right to safe transportation. It is your responsibility to follow the standards of behaviour outlined in the Code of Conduct, with specific regard to the following:
Students are required to:
· be at their bus stop at least five minutes before their pick-up time
· go directly to their seats and remain seated, follow the bus driver’s instructions, and behave appropriately at all times
Students may not:
· consume food and drinks on the bus
· fight, swear or cause excessive noise on the bus
· engage in activities that may endanger the safety of themselves or others
Extra-curricular involvement (e.g., teams, clubs, events) are a natural extension of the school day and provide you with the opportunity to develop into a well-rounded individual. Remember that extra-curricular participation is a privilege that will only be accessible to you if you fully commit to your academic obligations and abide by the Code of Conduct. Issues of misbehaviour or failure to fulfill academic responsibilities, including regular and punctual attendance, may result in the loss of extra-curricular privileges.
N.B. Be sure to strike a balance between your classes, your family responsibilities, your personal life and your extra-curricular involvement. Do not sign-up for too many activities, making it difficult to fulfill your commitments.
ELECTRONIC DEVICES (to be revised)
It is your right to learn in an atmosphere of quiet, without distraction.
It is your responsibility not to bring electrical or electronic devices to school that disturb the learning of others. Electronic devices must not be worn or played in teaching areas (e.g., classrooms, labs, library, etc.) nor in the hallways. Cell phones, smart phones, portable gaming devices, iPods and other listening devices are not to be used inside the building except in the cafeteria during lunch. You are encouraged to leave any items of value at home. If they are brought to school, they must be kept in backpacks or lockers and should not be visible other than in the cafeteria. Consequences for failure to comply will include a caution, temporary confiscation by the administration of the electronic equipment with a note in the student’s file and on subsequent occasions, the electronic equipment will be returned only to a parent or guardian upon a scheduled meeting between the alpha Vice-Principal, the parent and the student. A student unwilling to comply will ultimately be suspended. (Policy under review at time of printing and is subject to change)
FIRE AND OTHER EMERGENCIES
It is your right to be safe and secure. It is your responsibility to know the fire drill and lock down procedures. When an alarm sounds you must follow the directions given from the office and teachers.
LOCKDOWN, HOLD & SECURE, AND SHELTER IN PLACE
· The term Lockdown should only be used when there is a major incident or threat of school violence within the school or in relation to the school.
· The term Hold & Secure should be used when it is desirable to secure the school due to an ongoing situation outside and not related to the school. In this situation, the school continues to function in a near-normal state, with the exception that all exterior doors and windows are locked and no one enters or exits the building without approval from police or the board.
· The term Shelter in Place should be used for an environmental or weather-related situation where it is necessary to keep everyone within the school to protect them from an external situation.
Students have a responsibility to follow the directions of staff during a Lockdown, Hold & Secure or Shelter in Place drill or incident and to be familiar with the safety guidelines in the absence of a directing staff member. Students possessing cell phones are expected to turn off their phones during an emergency measure. Any student with information or prior knowledge of an individual or a potential situation, which may result in a violent incident, must report that information to a staff member as soon as possible.
If students are inside the school:
Go to the closes room and close the door. If safety permits, lock the door
Turn off the lights
Lie on the floor away from doors and windows.
Remain on the floor, quietly until further directions are given
If students are outside the school
Fire drills are held three times in each semester as per the Ontario Fire Code. Students are to follow the directions of staff and move quickly and in an orderly fashion to the closest exit as indicated in every classroom. Students are to remain with their teacher and far from the building until they hear the bell three (3) times to indicate the end of the drill. Any student who is found to have falsely signalled an alarm will be subject to suspension, police prosecution and/or a fine.
Use of a school locker is a privilege for the student’s convenience during the academic year. The following expectations apply to the use of the school lockers:
· All lockers and locks are property of T. L. Kennedy Secondary School and the Peel District School Board
· Locker information should not be given to others
· Assigned locker may not be changed without the permission of the Vice-Principal
· The Principal or Vice-Principals may reassign a student’s locker and lock if necessary
· The Principal, Vice-Principals or designate may open a student’s locker at any time without notice to the student
· Lockers are to store clothing, gym equipment, books and lunches
· Valuables such as electronic equipment, jewelry, money, expensive clothing or any items of significant value to others should not be brought to school. Students assume full responsibility for items stored in their assigned locker.
· Students will pay a refundable $5 deposit for the Dudley locks that will be provided. All other locks will be cut off without warning. Refunds will be given as per the instructions shared in June.
· Locker problems should be brought to the attention of the Vice-Principals or your counsellor
· The locker and its contents should be kept clean
· Students will be responsible for acts of vandalism/graffiti to the locker, and replacement of a damaged lock
· All lockers are to be emptied by the last day of classes in June. Any items left in the locker will be donated to charity.
It is your right to be assigned a locker. It is your responsibility to keep the locker for the individual to whom it is assigned, keep lock combination private, and not to bring valuables to school. Students who choose to bring valuables of any kind to school assume all responsibility in the event that they are misplaced, stolen or damaged in any way. Never leave your belongings unattended anywhere in the school at any time!
It is your right and the right of all students and staff to be safe and secure in the parking lot. It is your responsibility as a driver to obey the direction signs and to use care and caution when operating a vehicle in the parking lot. In order not to disturb classes or our neighbours, sitting in cars and the playing of radios is not permitted. Failure to comply with these rules may result in the loss of parking privileges.
STUDENT IDENTIFICATION / INFORMATION
It is your right to be recognized as a T.L. Kennedy student and to learn in a safe environment. It is your responsibility to promptly identify yourself with your first and last name to any staff member who asks you for your name. This is an issue of safety and allows the staff to identify intruders in the school. Should you refuse to identify yourself, or if you give a false identification you may be suspended from school. It is also your responsibility to ensure that you have a current student photo I.D. card (a requirement of the Peel District School Board) and carry this card with you at all times. You must show this card to access the computer lab, to sign out library materials and when signing in or out of the office.
It is your responsibility to ensure that all data (address, telephone numbers, emergency phone number) are up to date and accurate. This ensures that a parent / relative / guardian can be contacted, especially in the event of an emergency. Please report all changes to the guidance secretary. Membership in clubs, teams and activities requires that you hold a valid student I.D. card.
TEXTBOOKS / RESOURCES
It is your right to have books and curriculum resources loaned to you to assist you in your learning. It is your responsibility to keep such materials and resources in good order and to pay for any that are lost or damaged.
Texts and library books issued to students are the property of the Peel District School Board. Students are financially responsible for the return of the texts and library books in good condition. Texts are issued by number and the student is responsible for the specific text number assigned to him/her by the teacher. Students still owing materials to the school will be given temporary timetables and will not be given textbooks, library books or other materials until such time as these materials or fees have been paid.
USE OF TECHNOLOGY
It is your right to have access to the most up-to-date computer technology and equipment available to the school. It is your responsibility to use the labs and the equipment in the manner outlined in the Computer Use Form that you must sign at the beginning of the school year and in accordance with guidelines posted in the labs.
Internet use for any purpose which is contrary to the intent of T.L. Kennedy’s code of conduct is strictly prohibited. This includes all forms of violence, pornography, threats, harassment, and cyber-bullying directed at the staff, students or school. This applies to school, work and home internet use. It is your responsibility to adhere to the Board protocol in any e-mail or computer use. It is inappropriate to mention:
· any discussion related to other students
· personal information about other students
· the personal life of the staff member or student (home life, vacations, relationships)
Cell phones may not be used for any communication or for taking photographs unless permission is granted by a school official. Posting photographs or images on the internet (including social network sites) without adult permission violates the T. L. Kennedy Secondary School’s Code of Conduct.
VISITORS / GUESTS
It is your right to have your learning uninterrupted and free from distractions. It is your responsibility to ensure that casual visitors and guests do not drop by the school. It is our shared responsibility to maintain a safe environment at school. Staff and students are to notify the office immediately of intruders in the school. Parents / guardians, visitors and guests who come for an educational purpose should report first to the Main Office to identify themselves and the nature of their visit. All visitors are to follow this Code of Conduct when they are on school property or at school authorized events. This responsibility applies to other Peel schools. T.L. Kennedy students do not have the right to visit other schools unless it is under the supervision of a school representative.
A trespass letter and school consequences including suspension may be issued to any person who is on school property and who interferes with the educational purpose of the school.