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2021-2022CODE OFSTUDENTCONDUCTStudent Rights, Responsibilities andCharacter Development Handbook

Charlotte-Mecklenburg Board of EducationElyse DashewChairperson, At-Large(704) Byers-BaileyDr. Ruby JonesVice-Chairperson, District 2(980) 3(704) De La JaraCarol SawyerAt-Large(980) 4(980) Sanders-ShippMargaret MarshallAt-Large(980) 5(980) CheekSean StrainDistrict 1(704) 6(980) and MISSIONThe vision of Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools is to lead the community in educational excellence,inspiring intellectual curiosity, creativity, and achievement so that all students reach their full potentials.The mission of Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools is to create an innovative, inclusive,student-centered environment that supports the development of independent learners.In compliance with Federal Law, Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools administers all education programs, employment activities and admissions withoutdiscrimination against any person on the basis of gender, race, color, religion, national origin, age, or disability. Inquiries regarding compliance with Title IXof the Education Amendments of 1972, which prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex in education programs or activities, may be referred to theDistrict’s Title IX Coordinator at or to the Office for Civil Rights, United States Department of Education.

Table of ContentsLetter from Earnest Winston, Superintendent.1Student and Parent Acknowledgement and Pledge.3Character Traits.4Section I. Student Rights and Responsibilities. 5Safe and Orderly Educational Environment.5Attendance.5Student Counseling Services.5Free Speech/Expression.5Privacy and Property Rights.5Safe Harbor Provision.6Participation in Extracurricular/Co-curricular Activities.6Student Dress.6Behavior on the School Bus or at the Bus Stop.6Conduct while on School Property.6, 7Transfer when Criminal Charges are Pending.7School Property.7Section II. Disciplinary Response Code Overview. 7Treatment of Administrators, Teachers and Staff.7Participation in a Rule Violation.7Conduct Away from School Property.7Truancy.7Personal Technology Devices.8Possession of Illegal Substances.8Possession of Weapons.8Use of Trained Dogs.8Reports to Law Enforcement Agencies.8Reports to Department of Social Services.8Reports to Department of Motor Vehicles.8Section III. Disciplinary Responses. 9Level I .9Level II.9Level III .10Level IV.10Level V.10Section IV. Code of Conduct. 10Rule 1 - Attendance.10Rule 2 - Food/Beverages.10Rule 3 - Medication.11Rule 4 - Student Dress.11Rule 5 - Personal Property(i.e. cellular telephones and electronics).11Rule 6 - Misrepresentation (i.e. cheating).11, 12Rule 7 - Insubordination.12Rule 8 - Bullying/Profanity/Obscenityand/or Derogatory Language.12Rule 9 - Generally Disruptive Behavior.12, 13Rule 10 - Trespassing.13Rule 11 - Unsafe Action .13Rule 12 - Vehicle Use.13Rule 13 - Gambling.13Rule 14 - Vandalism.14Rule 15 - Use of Fire.14Rule 16 - Theft.14Rule 17 - Breaking and Entering.14Rule 18 - Breaking and Enteringwith Intent to Commit a Felony or Theft.14Rule 19 - Robbery.14Rule 20 - Extortion.15Rule 21 - Unauthorized Use of Technology Devices.15Rule 22 - Pornographic, Profaneand/or Violent Material.15Rule 23 - Counterfeit Currency.15Rule 24 - False Alarm.15Rule 25 - Bomb Threat.15Rule 26 - Aggressive Physical/Verbal Action.16, 17Rule 27 - Sexual Behavior.17Rule 28 - Alcohol, Tobacco and other Drugs.18Rule 29 - Weapons and Dangerous Objects.19Rule 30 - Gang and Gang-Related Activities.19, 20Rule 31 - Firearms.20Rule 32 - Persistently Dangerous Students.20Rule 33 - Refusal to Allow Search.20Rule 34 - Student Health and Safety (Covid 19).21Section V. Procedures Relating toDisciplinary Action or Re-entry. 21Corporal Punishment.21Procedures for Short-term Suspensions (1 - 10 days).21Procedures for Long-term Suspensions (more than10 days) or 365-day Suspensions andDisciplinary Reassignments.22, 23Procedures for Suspension of Students with Disabilities.23Procedures for Expulsion .23Procedures for Re-entry or Enrollment of ExpelledStudents or Students Suspended for 365 Days.23Procedures for Re-entry or Enrollment of Studentsfrom Alternative Settings.23, 24Point of Exit is Point of Entry.24Procedures for Expungement of Records.24Alternative Discipline Programs.24, 25Section VI. Definitions. 25, 26References. 26Section VII. DPI Crime Definitions.27-29Section VIII. Forms. 30Intimidation, Bullying and/or ThreatsAdministrative Report Form.31Title IX Incident Report Form.33Appeal to the Board of Education:Disciplinary Reassignment.35Request for Due Process Hearingfor Suspensions of more than 10 Days.37Appeal to the Board of Education:Long-Term Suspension.39Student Behavior Contract.41Request for Conference and Review of aShort-Term Suspension.43Principal’s Response to the Review of aShort-Term Suspension.45Short-Term Out-of-School Suspension Contacts.47

Student Rights, Responsibilities and Character Development Handbook2021-2022To our CMS students and families,Welcome to the 2021-2022 school year! All of us in CMS put the safety of our students and staff first. We workdiligently to provide a welcoming environment for learning and teaching, and to ensure all of our schools areorderly, healthy and safe.The Code of Student Conduct: Student Rights, Responsibilities and Character Development Handbook describesspecifically what we expect from each student. It helps us create and maintain an environment in which everystudent can learn and be successful.Please review this handbook in depth with your student(s). If there are portions of the handbook that areunclear, or if you have questions or concerns, please contact school personnel for assistance. You may alsocontact the district’s Ombudsman’s Office at 980-343-0055 or After you arecomfortable with the document, the expectations for you and your student(s), and the consequences for notmeeting those expectations, please sign the Student and Parent Acknowledgment and Pledge included in thishandbook. The form states that you are clear with the policies and agree to expectations, responsibilities andconsequences outlined for student conduct. Please return the signed form to your school.Your child’s safety is of the utmost importance. We ask that you help us develop and maintain a schoolenvironment that serves the needs of all families. Please let your student(s) know that you expect them tobe respectful and treat others as they would like to be treated. Encourage them to be responsible and act in amanner that will make us all proud. Each of us in the CMS family has a responsibility to make our schools greatplaces to learn. Together, we can make that happen.Thank you for choosing Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools. I wish you and your family a safe and successfulschool year!Earnest WinstonSuperintendent1

Student Rights, Responsibilities and Character Development Handbook2021-2022Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools2021–2022Student Rights, Responsibilities and Character Development HandbookCODE OF STUDENT CONDUCTStudent and Parent Acknowledgement and PledgeThe Code of Student Conduct has been developed to help your child receive quality instruction in an orderly educational environment.The school needs your cooperation in this effort. Therefore, please (1) review and discuss the Code of Student Conduct with yourchild and (2) sign and return this sheet to your child’s school. Should you have any questions when reviewing the Code of StudentConduct, please contact your child’s school principal. You may access an electronic copy of the handbook on the CMS You may also access a paper copy at your child’s school. Students and parents/guardians must (also) abide bythe District’s internet policies and procedures. You may view at IJNDB NOTE: FAILURE TO RETURN THIS ACKNOWLEDGEMENT AND PLEDGE WILL NOT RELIEVE ASTUDENT OR THE PARENT/GUARDIAN FROM BEING RESPONSIBLE FOR KNOWING ORCOMPLYING WITH THE RULES CONTAINED WITHIN THE CODE OF STUDENT CONDUCT.I have reviewed the Code of Student Conduct, and I understand the rights and responsibilities contained therein.Parent:To help keep my school safe, I pledge to show good character, work to the best of my ability and adhere to theguidelines established within the Code of Student Conduct.Student:Date:3

2021-2022Student Rights, Responsibilities and Character Development HandbookCharacter TraitsCharacter education is the deliberate effort to help people understand, care about and actupon core ethical values. An intentional and comprehensive character education initiativeprovides a lens through which every aspect of school becomes an opportunity for characterdevelopment.Benefits:n It promotes character development through the exploration of ethical issues across thecurriculum.n It develops a positive and moral climate by engaging the participation ofstudents, teachers and staff, parents, and communities.n It teaches students how to solve conflicts fairly, creating safer schools that are freer ofintimidation, fear and violence, and are more conducive to learning.*“Intelligence pluscharacter - that isthe goal of trueeducation.”Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr.The following character traits are essential for students to compete locally, nationally and internationally! These traits should bemodeled and maintained by adults and students.Respect, Responsibility and CaringThese are the cornerstones of good character!RespectShowing high regard for self, others and property.ResponsibilityBeing accountable for individual behavior.HonestyBeing truthful in word and action.CaringShowing concern for the well-being of others.Justice and FairnessDemonstrating impartial, unbiased and equitable treatment for all.CitizenshipBeing an informed, responsible and caring participant in the community.CourageDoing the right thing in the face of difficulty and following the conscience instead of the crowd.PerseveranceStaying the course and not giving up; demonstrating commitment, pride and a positive attitude in completing tasks.HopeBelieving in success.*Character Education Informational Handbook and Guide, DPI4

Student Rights, Responsibilities and Character Development Handbook2021-2022Section I – Student Rights and ResponsibilitiesSafe and Orderly Educational EnvironmentStudent RightsStudent ResponsibilitiesTo attend school in a positive educational environmentTo only engage in behaviors whichsupport a positive educational environmentTo express needs and concerns appropriatelyTo have school staff that is willing to hear theneeds and concerns of studentsTo feel safe from crime, violence, intimidation,bullying, harassment, racism and otherdiscrimination at schoolTo understand and follow school behaviorexpectations and to report instances of bullying anddangerous/unsafe situations to school administratorsAttendanceStudent RightsStudent ResponsibilitiesTo be informed of school board policies and schoolrules about absences, recovery and tardinessTo appeal a decision about recoveryTo attend school and class daily and to be on timeTo arrange to make up classwork/tests for credit withinfive days of returning from an absenceTo provide documentation of the reasonfor an absenceTo request make-up work for an absence andarrange to complete it within five days ofreturning to schoolSchool Counseling ServicesStudent RightsStudent ResponsibilitiesTo be informed about school guidance servicesTo utilize guidance services foreducational improvementTo request counseling or advisement when neededTo work cooperatively with school staffTo have access to school counselorsTo request counseling when neededFree Speech/ExpressionStudent RightsStudent ResponsibilitiesTo express views (in written or verbal form) withoutbeing obscene, disruptive, discriminatory or provocativeTo choose to participate in patriotic observancessuch as the Pledge of AllegianceTo have religious beliefs respectedTo respect the rights of others when they expresstheir viewsTo behave respectfully during patriotic observancesTo help develop and distribute publications as partof the educational processTo be protected from bullying, intimidationand threatsTo respect the religious beliefs of others and to refrainfrom activities that hold religious beliefs up to ridiculeTo follow the rules of responsible journalism underthe guidance of an advisor and administrator,including refraining from publishing material that isinappropriate for the school environmentTo refrain from bullying, intimidatingand threatening conductPrivacy and Property RightsStudent RightsStudent ResponsibilitiesTo have personal possessions remain private unless schoolstaff have reason to believe that a student is in possession ofitems prohibited by the Code of Student Conduct, other schoolpolicy or the law, or as part of a CMS random search process.To have personal property respectedTo keep prohibited items away fromschool and school functionsTo respect the personal property of othersNote: If a student’s rights have been violated, they may report to any school staff, a Learning Community Office, orcontact the Ombudsman’s Office at 980-343-0055.5

Student Rights, Responsibilities and Character Development Handbook2021-2022Safe Harbor ProvisionWhen prohibited items are found or inadvertently possessed on school property or at a school function, students shall immediately notify school staff and surrender the items.When a student inadvertently possesses an object prohibited by the Code of Student Conduct, the student shall approach a schoolstaff member and voluntarily surrender the object. The student may not be subject to discipline so long as the object is one thatthe student could lawfully possess off school grounds.When a student finds or inadvertently possesses an illegal item (e.g., drugs or weapons) or other contraband, the student shallimmediately report the discovery to school staff and surrender the item (if it’s in student’s possession). A student will not be inviolation of the Code of Student Conduct solely for making such a report. After a report is made, school officials shall investigateto determine if a violation of the Code of Student Conduct has occurred. If a student inadvertently possesses or finds a firearm ordestructive device, the student will not be subject to a 365-day suspension if the superintendent finds 1) the student delivered orreported the firearm or other destructive device as soon as practicable to a law enforcement officer or a school employee and 2)the student had no intent to use the firearm or other destructive device in a harmful or threatening way.The Safe Harbor Provision may not apply if a search is ongoing in any location at the school, if the object is surrendered during a search, orif the object is not turned in prior to discovery by school staff. With respect to objects that have been turned over to school staff, the parent/guardian must make arrangements to pick up the object from the school, unless it is an object that must be turned over to law enforcement.Participation in Extracurricular/Co-curricular ActivitiesAny student subject to the North Carolina High School Athletic Association’s eight-semester rule who (1) is convicted of a crimeclassified as a felony under North Carolina or federal law, or (2) is adjudicated delinquent for an offense that would be a felony ifcommitted by an adult, is not eligible to participate in the North Carolina High School Athletic Association’s sports program fromthe date of the conviction or adjudication of delinquency through the end of the student’s high school career. Pending appellate orother post-conviction review of the conviction or adjudication of delinquency does not affect the student’s immediate ineligibility.Student DressThe dress and grooming of students shall contribute to the health and safety of the individual and promote an orderly educationalenvironment. These standards apply to all students, unless a specific exception is made by the school administrator. Please see thedress code at your school.Behavior on the School Bus or at the Bus StopFor the purpose of providing safe transportation for all students, in addition to the other Code of Student Conduct rules,the following guidelines must be observed: Refrain from conduct or behavior that interferes with the orderly, safe and expeditious transportation of bus riders.¡ Obey the bus driver at all times.¡ Act appropriately while waiting for the bus.¡ Give your proper name when requested by the bus driver or monitor. Be at the bus stop at least ten minutes prior to a scheduled stop time. Ride only on assigned bus. Board and depart only at the assigned bus stop. Remain seated at all times when the bus is moving. Refrain from eating or drinking while aboard the bus. Cellular telephones and other electronic devices cannot be a distraction to the bus driver.Video cameras have been installed on some buses. Students may be filmed while on the bus.Violations of these standards, the Code of Student Conduct, or any behavior which substantially distracts the bus driver and causes,or has the potential to cause, a safety hazard on a bus, may be the basis for suspension from the bus and/or school or revocationof bus-riding privileges.Conduct While on School PropertyParents are encouraged to be active participants in their child’s education. A partnership between parents and the school requiresmeaningful and appropriate communication. As such, we must be civil in our discourse. This requires that:1. No one disrupts or attempts to interfere with the operation of a classroom or any other area of a school.2. School rules for access and visitation are strictly obeyed.3. Legitimate obligations and time constraints are respected.6

Student Rights, Responsibilities and Character Development Handbook2021-20224. Information that might help reach our common goal is shared. This includes information about safety issues, academicprogress, changes that might impact a student’s work or events in the community that might impact the school.In the event of a violation of the above guidelines, the following steps are available:1. Students who believe they have been treated in an inappropriate manner should report the behavior to the school administrator.2. Parents/guardians or community members who believe they have been treated in an inappropriate manner should reportthe behavior to the staff member’s immediate supervisor.3. Employees who believe they have been treated in an inappropriate manner by a student or parent shall report the incidentto the school administrator.4. Anyone on school district property may be directed to leave the premises by an administrator or other authorized staff.Anyone who threatens to, attempts to, or actually disrupts school or school district operations may be directed to leave thepremises by an administrator or other authorized staff and may have limitations placed on their campus access. Disruptive behavior is conduct that creates or may reasonably be expected to create a material and substantial disruption to theeducational environment or to the operation of the school, or that poses a threat to the safety of students, staff or visitors.It includes, but is not limited to:¡ Profane, lewd, obscene or abusive language, gestures or other written or electronic communication;¡ Rude or riotous noise;¡ Disorderly or assaultive behavior;¡ Vandalism or the defacement of public property;¡ Threats to the health or safety of others; and¡ Any other conduct that violates any applicable law or policies of the Board.5. More details about the expected conduct of visitors to campus may be found in Board Policy KI, “School Visitors.”Transfer When Criminal Charges are Pending/Triage ProcessThe district will continue the Criminal Watch program to monitor students charged with or convicted of criminal offenses. Inaddition, upon review of the underlying allegations and based upon the preponderance of evidence, the superintendent mayreassign to a different school a student who has been charged with a violent criminal or drug offense (juvenile or adult) that is orwould be considered a felony. There is no right for representative counsel to attend a triage meeting. The parent may request ahearing to contest this reassignment. In appropriate circumstances, as permitted by NC law, the superintendent may recommendexpulsion of the student, even if the incident did not occur on CMS property.School PropertySchool property is defined as the physical premises of all school campuses and properties, bus stops, all vehicles under the controlof the district, and the premises of all school-sponsored curricular or extra-curricular activities, whether occurring on or awayfrom a school campus. (CMS Board of Education Policy JKD)Section II – Disciplinary Response Code OverviewStudent disciplinary infractions and associated responses are divided into five progressively severe Levels. Both infractions andresponses are outlined later in this document.Treatment of Administrators, Teachers and StaffA student who commits an infraction against or involving an administrator, teacher, or other district staff member will be subjectto a heightened response under the five Levels. However, the heightened response will not exceed the maximum penalty for theparticular rule violation.Participation in a Rule ViolationA student who participates or conspires with another to violate a rule may be found in violation of the rule. If so, the student willbe subject to the full disciplinary consequence for the rule violation.Conduct Away from School PropertyStudents may be disciplined for conduct away from CMS property that violates the Code of Student Conduct and that has or may have adirect and immediate impact on the orderly and efficient operation of the schools or the safety of individuals in the school environment.This includes conduct that occurs during the virtual learning environment.TruancyStudents between ages 7 and 16, and students younger than 7 who are enrolled in school, are required by law to attend school. Inaddition to the consequences outlined in Rule 1, the student will be required to make up the work missed and may be subject tothe district’s attendance recovery procedures. Under NC compulsory attendance statutes, students with more than 10 unexcusedabsences and/or their parent/caregiver will be referred to the proper authorities.7

Student Rights, Responsibilities and Character Development Handbook2021-2022Personal Technology DevicesA personal technology device (PTD) is a portable Internet-accessing device that is not the property of the district that can be usedto transmit communications by voice, written characters, words or images, share information, record sounds, process words, and/or capture images, such as a laptop computer, tablet, smartphone, cellphone, personal digital assistant or E-Reader. A studentmay possess and use a PTD on school property, at after-school activities and at school-related functions, provided that duringschool hours and on a school bus, the PTD remains off and put away. With the approval of the superintendent, a principal maypermit students to possess and use PTDs during the school day for educational purposes. “Educational purposes” include studenteducation, research and career development. A principal may put additional rules in place permitting student use of cell phonesduring noninstructional times of the school days. Possession of a PTD by a student is a privilege, which may be revoked forviolations of the Code of Student Conduct. Violations may result in the confiscation of the PTD (to be returned only to a parent)and/or other disciplinary actions. Students permitted to use PTDs during the school day must follow all rules set forth in PolicyIJNDB and Regulation IJNDB-R, and sign the Student Internet Use Agreement. The district is not responsible for theft, loss, ordamage to PTDs or other electronic devices brought onto CMS property.Possession of Illegal SubstancesThe unlawful possession, use or distribution of illicit drugs and/or alcohol by students on school property or at any schoolfunction is prohibited. In addition to school consequences, such actions will be reported to local law enforcement and may berequired to be reported to the Department of Motor Vehicles.Possession of WeaponsThe possession of weapons by students on school property or at any school function is prohibited. In addition to school consequences, such actions will be reported to local law enforcement and may be required to be reported to the Department of Motor Vehicles.Use of Trained Dogs to Inspect for Contraband Substances or ItemsAccording to CMS Board Policy JIHD: “The Charlotte-Mecklenburg Board of Education is committed to the maintenance oforder and discipline in schools, and to the safety and welfare of students. Therefore, school authorities may use specially traineddogs to sniff students’ lockers, desks, book bags, automobiles, and other property at any time in an effort to detect the presenceof prohibited substances and items. Authorities may search personal property in or about which trained dogs have detected prohibited substances or items and may seize such substances or items found as a result of these searches. Students shall be subjectto consequences set forth in the CMS Student Code of Conduct for the possession of any prohibited items seized as a result ofinspections by trained dogs and may also be subject to criminal prosecution.” (The full Board Policy JIHD can be found ?open&id B2LRU36FA140)Reports to Law Enforcement AgenciesAs required by North Carolina law, principals are required to report the following acts to law enforcement when they have personalor actual notice of the incident and the acts occurred on the school property: “assault resulting in serious injury, sexual assault, sexualoffense, rape,

CODE OF STUDENT CONDUCT Student and Parent Acknowledgement and Pledge The Code of Student Conduct has been developed to help your child receive quality instruction in an orderly educational environment. The school needs your cooperation in this effort. Therefore, please (1) review and discuss the Code of Student Conduct with your

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