Statement of Understanding 56 Appendix A: Short Term and/or Long Term Suspension Pursuant to M.G.L. ch. 71, §37H ¾ 57
Please note that this 2015-2016 edition of the Student and Family Handbook supersedes any earlier editions and that additions and changes to school policies in this Handbook may be added during the year through correspondence with students and/or families.THE SCHOOL
Boston Collegiate Charter School (BCCS) received its charter in February 1998 (as South Boston Harbor Academy Charter School) and opened to 120 students in grades 5-7 in September of 1998. Since then, the school has expanded by adding one grade each year. In the 2015-2016 school year, we will enroll over 665 students in grades 5-12. Over the past ten years, 100% of our graduating seniors have been accepted into college. The BCCS team brings a variety of perspectives and skills to our school. As parents, we look to expand the educational opportunities of Boston’s children, hoping to reinvigorate local interest in public schools. As educators, we are interested in providing the optimal education for the City’s students. As residents of Boston, we are familiar with the challenges facing the public school system, and we are vitally concerned with what we can do to improve the City’s schools. As professionals who work and live in Boston, we are interested in creating a generation of well-rounded students, skilled in the core subject areas that will serve as the foundation of future jobs. As academics, we are familiar with the public and educational policy issues facing Boston and Massachusetts, and we are interested in helping charter schools produce replicable reforms. And finally, as lifelong students ourselves, we are interested in instilling in our students a love of learning and a deep understanding of the importance of education.
OUR MISSION AND VISION Our Mission
The mission of BCCS is to prepare each student for college.
We have a clear vision of how BCCS students will conduct themselves, both when they first enter our school and when they graduate. In class, we expect BCCS students to sit up, listen, ask and answer questions, nod for understanding, and track the person speaking to them. In school, we expect BCCS students to be respectful, responsible, and kind, and to understand that through their efforts, they will achieve. And when they graduate, we expect BCCS students to be contributing members of society as dazzling and inspiring readers, writers, mathematicians, scientists, linguists, and historians.
RESPONSIBILITY AND ACCOUNTABILITY PHILOSOPHY
The decision to send your child to BCCS is one that demonstrates your high hopes and expectations for your child, yourselves, and us. We share those dreams with you, and we are committed to making them a reality as we prepare your child for college. But we cannot do it without you.
BCCS is based on shared responsibility and accountability. As students, families, and teachers, we each must fulfill our responsibilities, and we each must be held accountable for doing so. What does this mean?
For students, it means we are going to expect a lot from you. Just like your responsibilities at home—cleaning your room or doing the dishes—and just like the responsibilities you’ll have when you get older—voting in an election or serving on a jury—you’ll be expected to do certain things and behave in certain ways as a BCCS student. You are expected to act respectfully toward all fellow students and all staff. You are expected to attend school daily and punctually, ready to participate actively in all classes. You are expected to complete all homework assignments fully and well, to stay for tutoring when needed, and to work productively in Homework Support when required. Finally, you are expected to accept all consequences of your behavior. In short, we expect you to be mindful, achieving, professional, and persevering.
For families, it means we are going to expect a lot from you as well. Along with those countless and seemingly endless responsibilities you carry as parents, we also expect you to do certain things as a BCCS family. Like your child, you are expected to act respectfully to all members of our school community. You are expected to ensure that your child arrives daily and punctually, ready to participate actively in all classes. You are expected to oversee your child’s completion of all homework assignments, support mandatory afterschool tutoring, and honor the requirement of Homework Support. Finally, you are expected to require your child to accept fully all consequences of his or her behavior.
For teachers, it means we continue to expect a lot from ourselves. Along with the daily responsibilities we carry as educators, we also expect ourselves to do certain things and behave in certain ways as BCCS teachers. We, too, are expected to act respectfully to all members of our school community. We are expected to prepare engaging, demanding lessons in all of our classes every day, to assign and evaluate appropriate homework assignments each night, to provide tutoring regularly after school, and to assign students to Homework Support when needed. Finally, we expect to be held accountable for our behavior as teachers dedicated to the mission of preparing each BCCS student for college.
For all of us, the Family Accountability Contract, reprinted on the next two pages, represents some of the most important responsibilities of being a member of the BCCS community. For students, the Contract makes you aware of what being a BCCS student is all about. For families, the Contract identifies your important role in the life of your child and that of the school. We all have responsibilities to meet. In exchange for what students and families do, we promise to provide students with a safe and orderly environment in which they will enjoy studying and learning, and we promise to prepare each student for college. It is not a complete list of what needs to be done, and we are sure we will all have more to do. But it gives a clear idea of your vital role as families and what it will take to make this year a successful one for your child.
BCCS Family Accountability Contract
In order for students to learn and grow, it is essential that we all do our part. BCCS students, families, teachers, and administrators all have responsibilities to promote student learning and growth. We are all educational partners who must do our part so that students can learn to the best of their ability and be prepared for college success.
BCCS’s Student and Family Handbook outlines what students, teachers, and the Principal must do to ensure student success. This Family Accountability Contract describes important responsibilities and school expectations that families accept once they choose to enroll their child/children at this school. Keep in mind that all the items below are drawn directly from our Handbook. We know that the choice you made in coming here is a precious one and we want to make sure that you have a full and clear understanding of your responsibilities.
I will ensure that my child comes to school every day on time to begin school at 8:00 AM.
I understand that if my child is absent more than 6.5% of his or her school year, he or she may have to repeat his or her current grade. For a typical 185-day school year, this would mean that if a student is absent with or without excuse for more than 12 days of the school year, that student may fail all of his or her classes for the year and may need to repeat his or her current grade.
I will make sure that my child promptly makes up missed work following absences.
I understand that an absence is excused if I have contacted the school and written a detailed note regarding student illness, family emergency, or religious observance. I understand the student is still considered absent for that day, but may make up the work.
I understand that my child will not earn credit for work missed after unexcused absences, including but not limited to , family vacations, participation at sports tournaments, and attendance at entertainment events.
I understand that the school day ends at 5:00 PM, but that my child may be dismissed at 3:00 PM (2:00 PM on Mondays) if all homework is complete and he or she is not required to stay for detention or required extra help.
I agree to make alternative transportation plans if my child is not dismissed until 4:00 PM or 5:00 PM.
I understand that my child may not be permitted to enter the building before the arrival of school buses (grades 5 and 6) or 7:30 AM (grades 7-12) and will report to an assigned “before-school” room if he or she enters before 7:45 AM.
I agree to carefully check my child’s homework daily to ensure that it is complete.
I understand that if my child is in grades 5-11, he or she may be required to stay for at least one hour in Homework Support (grades 5-8) or mandatory tutoring (grade 5-11) if he or she does not complete assigned homework or completes homework that does not meet classroom standards.
I understand that my child cannot be excused from Homework Support or mandatory tutoring unless there is a family emergency or a student illness.
I understand that lack of transportation is not an acceptable reason to remove my child from Homework Support.
I understand that if my child skips Homework Support or mandatory tutoring and does not make it up the next day, he or she may receive detention.
CODE OF CONDUCT
I agree to promote and support the rules of behavior as well as the consequence system as outlined in the BCCS Student Handbook, and to accept responsibility as a partner in my child’s learning.
I understand that my child will be required to stay for at least one hour in detention if he or she commits a detention-level infraction or accumulates three demerits in the course of a week (grades 5-8) or month (grades 9-12).
I understand that it is my child’s responsibility to notify me if he or she earns a detention.
I understand that my child may be suspended if he or she misses detention.
I will come to school for a meeting if my child is suspended.
I understand that my child needs to pass five core academic classes (a core class is any class that meets five times a week) in order to be promoted to the next grade.
I understand that my child will automatically be retained if he or she fails two or more core academic classes.
I understand that if my child fails one class, he or she must fulfill summer remediation requirements.
STUDENT DRESS POLICY
I will ensure that my child comes to school in proper dress, according to the guidelines listed in the Student Handbook.
I understand that if my child comes to school out of uniform, he or she may not be permitted to attend class, may need to wait for the appropriate dress to be brought in from home, and may receive a demerit or an automatic detention to be served that day.
I will ensure that my child comes to school with a nutritious breakfast and lunch every day, or I will make arrangements for him or her to have the school breakfast and/or lunch.
I agree not to send soda to school with my child since students are not allowed to drink soda at school.
I agree not to send nuts or any nut products with my child since our school is nut-free.
I agree to support my child’s academic work by communicating regularly with my child’s teachers and advisor, by scheduling appointments to talk with them as needed, and by attending Family Conferences in November, January, and April.
I understand that if my child is in grade 5, I will need to pick up his or her report card at the first Family Conference.
I understand that if my child is failing at least one class for the quarter or for the year, I will need to pick up his or her report card at the next Family Conference.
I agree to attend family meetings and other school-sponsored events on a regular basis.
I understand the significant commitment necessary for my child to be prepared for college success, and I am committed to supporting my child through all aspects of the college preparatory process.
Parent/Guardian Name Student Name
Parent/Guardian Signature Student Signature
In exchange for what students and families do, we promise to provide students with a safe and orderly environment in which they will enjoy studying and learning, and we promise to prepare each student for college.
Advisor Signature Principal Signature
WHO WE ARE Faculty and Staff
A t BCCS, one of our core beliefs is that “Without great teachers, nothing else matters.” You trust our staff you’re your children and we value that trust immensely. Our website lists our teachers and administrators, along with brief biographies so that you have a sense of who they are. Please visit www.bostoncollegiate.org/aboutUs/faculty.php to learn more about our stellar staff.
Board of Trustees
T he school is governed by a Board of Trustees that brings community, educational, and professional perspectives to maintaining a viable and thriving school. Members of the 2015-16 Board of Trustees are:
Nickie Norris, Chair General Partner, New Heritage Capital
Martha Mueller Cook, Vice Chair Principal, The MMC Group
Craig Hillier, Treasurer Partner, Ernst & Young LLP
Cheryl Lubin, Clerk Business Consultant
Brian Dugdale Associate, Goulston & Storrs
Robert Harris Director of Professional Development, Hinckley, Allen & Snyder LLP
Haven Ladd Partner, The Parthenon Group
Rob Lawrence Senior Vice President of Corporate Strategy, LogMeIn
Caroline Page Investment Professional, High Vista Strategies
Tyrone Porter Assistant Professor, Boston University
Boston Collegiate Charter School is unequivocally committed to providing a safe and orderly environment in which students can improve their academic achievement. Students whose behavior does not meet the school community’s clearly defined standards for reasonable and acceptable behavior will not be permitted to disrupt the education of others.
Without a firm and consistent discipline policy, none of what we envision for the school can happen. Therefore, we cannot overemphasize the importance of providing a firm and consistent discipline policy. Students and families have a right to attend a safe and orderly school. Therefore, for every infraction, there will be a consequence. This is the basis of our student code of conduct.
RESPECTFUL AND COURTEOUS ENVIRONMENT
BCCS is also committed to maintaining a respectful and courteous environment in which students are expected to demonstrate those daily behaviors that are part of any respectful community. Students should politely greet staff each morning, as well as welcome any guests who are visiting the building with a handshake, a pleasant greeting, and an introduction.
Students will practice these skills as part of the Advisory Program and be expected to demonstrate them each day. These social skills are an important factor in creating the type of school environment we desire, and they are an essential part of every student’s growth into young adulthood.
OUR CORE VALUES: MAPP
The core values of BCCS are best captured in the acronym MAPP. BCCS students and staff are consistently Mindful, Achieving, Professional, and Persevering. These four core values convey our daily commitment to building a safe, orderly, respectful, and courteous environment in which teaching and learning can thrive.
As we work to provide a productive learning environment, it is equally important for us to acknowledge and reward desirable behavior in students. We accomplish this primarily through the Lower and Middle School MAPP Merit Systemand Rubric Rewards.
Merits in the Lower and Middle School acknowledge individual acts that promote a positive community or support academic achievement. Students can earn merits from a staff member for a variety of reasons, including but not limited to:
Students accumulate merits over time and are able to spend merits at the Merit Store and in Merit Auctions for school supplies, free lunches, gift certificates, and a variety of other prizes and privileges.
HIGH SCHOOL REWARDS/PERKS
The 9th grade and 10th grade will be issuing student of the month awards. Awards will be based on academics, community involvement and the willingness to go above and beyond.
Students will earn rewards, privileges, and recognition at all-school or grade level assemblies depending on their performance.
Students in grades 11 and 12 can receive GPA or Community Perks. See the description below:
11th and 12th Grade Perks
(list posted in advisories)
Criteria: applicable to all juniors and seniors who have a 3.0 GPA for the current marking period.
Awarded at progress reports/report cards
Ability to leave campus during lunch
Ability to leave campus during study halls
Access to lockers in between classes
School Community Perks
(list posted in advisories)
Criteria: applicable to all juniors and seniors who are involved with at least ONE school activity—including sports, clubs, Big Sibs, yearbook, etc. as indicated by attendance to or responsibility in the activity.
Awarded at progress reports/report cards
Ability to have a beverage other than water all day (coffee, Gatorade, flavored water)
*Egregious behavior that results in suspension may lead to privilege revocation.
During every period of the school day, students in grades 5-8 receive a rubric score from 0 to 4 that assesses their performance as a group and that incorporates the values of MAPP. The rubric encourages students to work together in their efforts to improve academic achievement. The rubric score is based on the following observable criteria:
having necessary materials for class
Do Now completion
work ethic in class
degree of respect and cooperation in class
degree of participation and alertness
quality of questions and comments
Teachers record rubric scores at the end of every class, and advisors tally scores at the end of every week. Classes in grades 5-8 receive rewards for consistently high rubric scores, such as ordering lunch from a restaurant or taking a field trip.
SCHOOL-RELATED DISCIPLINARY OFFENSES
Below is a description of school-related disciplinary offenses for which a student may be subject to detention, in-school suspension, out-of-school suspension, or expulsion. A school-related disciplinary offense refers to the violation of the Code of Conduct occurring:
while the student is on school grounds or school-related transportation
during a school-sponsored activity.
The list of offenses that follows is not meant to be comprehensive; there may be other circumstances that warrant disciplinary measures as well. And along with the list of consequences that result from such offenses, students may also earn a loss of privileges, which include but are not limited to:
eating lunch in the office and/or in lunch detention
being monitored by an adult during hallway transition times
missing school events, trips, or activities (including dances and assemblies)
losing bus privileges
losing afterschool privileges
losing the privilege of socializing with other students
reflecting on their behavior orally and/or in writing
apologizing to their peers in advisory group or at a school assembly
performing extra service for the school.
Earning Demerits and Detentions
If a student commits any of the following infractions, the student may receive a demerit, may receive detention, may lose some or all school privileges including bus privileges, may be sent out of class, and/or may be sent home for the rest of the day.
Infractions that result in an immediate detention* (at minimum) include, but are not limited to:
disrespecting a fellow student
disrespecting faculty, staff, or another member of school community
disrespecting school property
disruptive behavior that affects classroom learning (and may lead to being sent out of class)
improper behavior in class, school, on school-related transportation, or during a school-sponsored activity
arriving to school out of uniform without permission
failing to appear at Homework Support, detention, or mandatory tutoring
failing to produce a signed grade report the day after distribution
other behaviors deemed inappropriate by school staff.
*Students who receive three or more detentions in one week may be required to serve an in-class reflection or suspension.
Infractions that result in a demerit include, but are not limited to:
minor uniform infraction
arriving late to school or class
minor classroom disruption
not following directions
being unprepared for class
no signature on a required document
other infractions as determined by school staff.
In grades 5-8, if a student commits three of the above demerit-infractions in one week, a student will receive an afterschool detention. In grades 9-12, if a student commits three of the above demerit- infractions in one month, a student will receive a morning detention.
Students may be required to serve one or more hours of afterschool or morning detention if they fail to meet school expectations. Depending on the severity of the infraction, either three demerits or one egregious action may lead to detention. Students will be notified of their detention after receiving their third demerit, or after committing a single, detention-worthy offense.
Lower School and Middle School: Students who receive their third demerit in a week or who commit a detention-level infraction will receive a one-hour detention for that afternoon. No exceptions will be made. Students who receive a second detention in a single day will receive a second hour of detention for that afternoon, unless they are also in Homework Support. In this case, they will serve the second hour the next day.
High School: Students who receive their third demerit in a month or who commit a detention-level infraction will receive a one-hour detention. Detentions will be served on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays before the start of school. Students are required to report to the main office to be given their morning detention job on the day assigned by the Dean of Students. Upon completion of the job, students must check out with the Dean of Students. If students complete their detention job early, they must remain in the detention room (Room 180) until 7:50 AM. If a student earns two hours of detention, he or she will serve one hour during morning detention and one hour afterschool. If a student cannot attend morning detention or arrives late, he or she will receive double detention and will stay that day until 5:00 PM. Students who do not stay for double detention may face suspension.
In an effort to maintain the quality and integrity of programs throughout the school year, infractions of school rules which occur after May 1st of any school year may be subject to further penalties in addition to those listed below, which include but are not limited to: removal from school activities, removal from senior class activities, and/or removal from participation in graduation activities or ceremonies.
Students are expected to always respond respectfully to the authority and direction of school staff. Behaviors that are considered disrespectful include but are not limited to: rolling of the eyes, making inappropriate remarks or sounds in response to a request, questioning a staff person’s action or authority, or talking back to a staff member. Such disrespect will not be tolerated, and demerits, detentions, and other consequences will be issued appropriately.
If a student is required to leave a classroom due to his or her behavior, the student must meet with the teacher to resolve the problem prior to the student returning to the classroom. This is in addition to receiving an automatic detention for being sent out of class. A meeting between the student, his or her parent or guardian, and the student’s Advisor, classroom teacher, Dean of Students, or Principal may be required in order to address the student’s behavior and plan for improvement.
Our rules and regulations are based on a system of progressive discipline. This means that an administrator has the discretion to significantly increase penalties in the cases of repeat offenses. In determining the severity of the penalty, the Principal may consider all relevant factors, including but not limited to the following:
The student’s previous disciplinary record
The severity of disruption to the educational process
The degree of danger to self, others, and the school in general
The degree to which the student is willing to change his or her inappropriate behavior.
The Principal or his/her designee may remove a student from privileges, such as extracurricular activities and attendance at school-sponsored events, based on the student's misconduct. A removal from privileges and/or extracurricular activities is not subject to the procedures set forth below.
PROCEDURES FOR DISCIPLINARY ACTION
Pursuant to M.G.L. ch. 71, §37H, §37H¾, and §37H½
Suspension If a student commits one of the infractions listed below, the student may receive a suspension. In every case of student misconduct for which suspension may be imposed, the Principal is required to exercise discretion in deciding the consequence for the offense, consider ways to re-engage the student in learning, and avoid using long-term suspension from school as a consequence until alternatives have been tried. Under the Fourteenth Amendment to the Constitution, students are guaranteed due process and fair treatment at school. Therefore, prior to a school administrator taking disciplinary action against a student, the school administrator shall provide the student with appropriate due process as detailed in Appendix A on page 57.
disrespect of a fellow student
disrespect of faculty, staff, or school transportation provider
disrespect of school property
using or possessing drug paraphernalia including but not limited to: pipes, needles, and cigarette papers
using or possessing over-the-counter medication inappropriately
using or possessing tobacco products
damaging, destroying, or stealing personal or school property or attempting to do so
committing sexual, racial, or any other form of harassment or intimidation
truancy, including intentionally missing Homework Support or detention
using abusive, vulgar, or profane language or treatment
making verbal or physical threats towards students
fighting, pushing, shoving, or unwanted physical contact
setting off false alarms or calling in groundless threats
departing, without permission, from class, floor, building, or school-sponsored activity
use of a cell phone, pager, or other electronic communication device during an assessment
unauthorized use of the building elevator
placing a personal lock on a school-issued locker
replacing a school-issued lock
forgery of any sort, including parental signatures
cheating or plagiarism, or copying of anyone else’s work (including the use of language translation sites and term paper sites on the Internet)
repeated and fundamental disregard of school policies and procedures.
In addition, our rules and regulations are based on a system of escalating consequences. This means that penalties may increase after repeat offenses. These may be enforced in addition to a suspension, whether in or out of school.
Escalating consequences are school-specific and may or may not include:
community service to the school before or after regular school hours
Suspensions may be short term or long term. Short term suspension means the removal of a student from the school premises and regular classroom activities for ten (10) consecutive school days or less. Long term suspension means the removal of a student from the school premises and regular classroom activities for more than ten (10) consecutive school days, or for more than ten (10) school days cumulatively for multiple disciplinary offenses in any school year.
Suspensions may also occur in-school or out-of-school. In-school suspension is the removal of a student from regular classroom activities, but not from the school premises, for no more than ten (10) consecutive school days, or no more than ten (10) school days cumulatively for multiple infractions during the school year. BCCS policy is that after five suspensions, either in or out of school, the student may be out-of-school suspended for each subsequent offense. A Principal may, at his/her discretion, allow a student to serve a long-term suspension in school.
During the course of an out-of-school suspension from school, a student may not be on school premises. During the course of an in-school or out-of-school suspension, a student is ineligible to participate in any school-related activities, including athletic activities. The student and his/her parents are expected to meet with a school administrator prior to the student’s return to class.
For more information on student and parent/guardian rights pertaining to due process, please refer to Appendix A on page 57.
If a student’s continued presence in school poses a danger to persons or property, or materially and substantially disrupts the order of the school, and, in the administrator’s judgment there is no alternative available to alleviate the danger or disruption, a student who is charged with a disciplinary offense may be removed temporarily from school before receiving due process pursuant to an Emergency Removal..
The administrator will immediately notify the Executive Director in writing of the removal and the reason for it, and describe the danger or disruption by the student.
The temporary removal will not exceed two (2) school days following the day of the emergency removal, during which time the administrator will provide the following, as applicable to the length of suspension:
Make immediate and reasonable efforts to orally notify the student and the student’s parent of the emergency removal, the reason for the need for emergency removal, and other applicable matters
Provide written notice to the student and parent as provided in Appendix A (see page 57), as applicable
Provide the student an opportunity for a hearing with the administrator, as applicable, and provide the parent an opportunity to attend the hearing, before the expiration of the two (2) school days, unless an extension of time for hearing is otherwise agreed to by the administrator, student, and parent
Render a decision orally on the same day as the hearing, and in writing no later than the following school day.
An administrator may not remove a student from school on an emergency basis for a disciplinary offense until adequate provisions have been made for the student’s safety and transportation.