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YORK REGION DISTRICT SCHOOL BOARDPolicy and Procedure #668.0, Caring and Safe SchoolsProcedure #668.1, Student SuspensionsProcedure #668.2, Student ExpulsionsProcedure #668.3, Supporting Appropriate Behaviour andBullying Prevention and InterventionProcedure #668.4, Violence Threat Risk AssessmentProcedure #668.5, Student Progressive DisciplineProcedure #668.6, Emergency PreparednessProcedure #668.7, Code of Student ConductProcedure #668.8, Safe Welcome Program: Elementary SchoolsProcedure #668.9, Lockdown, School SitesProcedure #668.10, Hold-and-Secure, School SitesProcedure #668.11, Fire Planning and Drills, School SitesWORKING DOCUMENTExecutive SummaryThe Caring and Safe Schools policy and its related procedures address the Board’scommitment to creating and sustaining caring and safe school climates.What has Changed?Major changes to the document: Reason for review: New Ministry Directives that requirecompliance before the review cycle (Policy/Program Memorandum 144, and 166). The ViolentThreat Risk Assessment Protocol with the co-terminus school boards was revised.Who is affected by these changes and what is the impact on current practice?Implementation timelines: Immediate.Lead Superintendent(s)/Subject Matter Expert(s): Tod Dungey, Associate Director,Leadership and Schools, Clelia Della-Rovere, Superintendent of Caring and Safe Schools andInternational Education.Stakeholder Groups with Responsibilities under this Policy Board of TrusteesDirector of EducationAssociated Directors of EducationSuperintendentsPrincipalsStaff membersStudentsCaring and Safe Schools1

Human Resource ServicesPlant ServicesChild Care and Before and After School ProvidersPermit HoldersParents/GuardiansCommunity partnersRelationship to Board PrioritiesThe Caring and Safe Schools policy and its related procedures support the three areas of theMulti-Year Plan: Student Achievement and Well-Being, Delivery of Effective and SustainableEducational Programs and Stewardship of Board Resources. They reinforce the Board’scommitment to ensuring a caring and safe school environment and demonstratingprofessionalism and accountability for high standards of practice in Board operations.Timelines and Next StepsThis policy was scheduled for first review at the April 5, 2022 Policy and By-Law StandingCommittee meeting.Providing FeedbackQuestions about this policy and/or procedure should be raised with your principal, manager orsupervisor. If additional clarification is required, principals, managers and supervisors maycontact the lead superintendent and/or subject matter expert through Trustee Services.In accordance with Board Policy #285.0, Board Policies, Procedures and SupportingDocuments, the Board welcomes all comments and suggestions on Board policy.Input is an important component of the review process. If you feel a policy and/or procedureneeds to be revised, feedback may be submitted through the school council or by submitting theon-line form. In your response please; outline clearly the specific section(s) of the policy and/or procedure in which you are notcomfortable,suggest specific alternate wording to reflect your position, andidentify the reason(s) for your concern(s).Specific recommendations or questions about the review process should be submitted using theon-line form or sent to the Policy Officer via email at [email protected], or viatelephone at 905-727-0022 extension 2570 or in hard copy at The Education Centre – Aurora.Legislative ContextHuman Rights: Code-Related Harassment and DiscriminationAccessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities ActChild and Family Services ActEducation ActMunicipal Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy ActCaring and Safe Schools2

Occupational Health and Safety ActOntario Human Rights CodeCanada Human Rights ActRelated DocumentsCaring and Safe Schools in Ontario: Supporting Students with Special Education Needs throughProgressive Discipline, Kindergarten to Grade 12.Safe Schools Policy and Practice: An Agenda for ActionIt is the expectation of the York Region District School Board that all employees, students andpersons invited to or visiting Board property, or partaking/volunteering in Board or schoolsponsored events and activities, will respect the policies and procedures of the Board.Caring and Safe Schools3

Board Policy #668.0Caring and Safe SchoolsWORKING DOCUMENT1.Policy StatementThe York Region District School Board is committed to creating and sustaining caring and safeschools which promote student learning, achievement and well-being. Each student has theright to learn in a safe, positive, respectful and inclusive environment free from harassment anddiscrimination and where every effort is made to mitigate risk or the potential for harm.The Board values and respects equity, diversity and inclusivity. To support all students inbecoming global citizens, strengths, needs and barriers to learning are identified and respondedto as part of a whole-school approach.It is essential to promote safety by creating and sustaining a culture of caring thoughmeaningful, culturally responsive and equitable actions to prevent and respond to issues ofsafety and inappropriate behaviours.2.ApplicationInclusive, accepting, respectful and healthy relationships support individuals to reach their fullpotential. Norms, expectations and standards of behaviour reflect a responsible and civil societywhere inclusion, accessibility, acceptance and safety build the foundation of a caring and safeschool climate. This is consistent with Board priorities including but not limited to the Multi-YearPlan, policies and procedures, Ministry strategies and legislation including, but not limited to, theOntario Human Rights Code.Building a caring and safe school climate requires a whole-school approach with;a)b)c)d)supportive leadership,effective teaching practices,healthy relationships,a systematic and responsive approach to addressing behaviour and the potential forharm, ande) engagement of families and the broader community.All students benefit from clear, consistent behavioural expectations with positive modelling. Toenhance caring and safe school climates, positive student behaviour supports are provided.Inappropriate behaviour is addressed, taking into account mitigating and other factors through abias-free progressive discipline model that employs a restorative practice approach. Preexpulsion mediation is key to this process and provides opportunity for student, staff and familyengagement.Caring and Safe Schools4

A clear focus on bullying prevention supports the development of healthy relationships,educates the school community and encourages timely reporting so that appropriate action canbe taken.Families play a critical role in the education of their children and in supporting their mentalhealth and well-being and work collaboratively with the Board and external agencies to accessresources that contribute to positive outcomes for students.2.1Mitigating and Other FactorsIn fostering a bias-free approach to progressive discipline, prevention and early interventionpractices support positive student behaviour among all students. Mitigating and other factors,as outlined in the Ontario Regulation 472/07, Suspension and Expulsion of Pupils, must betaken into account when responding to and addressing inappropriate student behaviour.2.2Specific mitigating factors include:a) the student’s ability to control their behaviour;b) the student’s ability to understand the consequences of their behaviour;c) whether the student’s continuing presence in a school creates an unacceptable risk ofsafety to others; and2.2.1Other factors, including;a) the student’s history,b) whether a progressive discipline approach has been used with the student,c) whether the activity was related to any harassment of the student because of their race,ethnic origin, religion, disability, gender or sexual orientation or to any other harassment,d) how the suspension or expulsion would affect the student’s ongoing education,e) the age of the student, and2.2.2In the case of a student for whom an individual education plan has beendeveloped;a) whether the behaviour was a manifestation of a disability identified in the student’sindividual education plan,b) whether appropriate individualized accommodation has been provided, andc) whether the suspension or expulsion is likely to result in an aggravation or worsening ofthe student’s behaviour or conduct.2.3BullyingAs outlined in the Education Act and Policy Program Memorandum 144, bullying may bephysical, verbal, social and/or electronic. Aggressive and typically repeated behaviour by a pupilwhere,a) the behaviour is intended by the pupil to have the effect of, or the pupil ought to knowthat the behaviour would be likely to have the effect of,Caring and Safe Schools5

causing harm, fear or distress to another individual, including physical, psychological,social or academic harm, harm to the individual’s reputation or harm to the individual’sproperty, orcreating a negative environment at a school for another individual, andb) the behaviour occurs in a context where there is a real or perceived power imbalancebetween the pupil and the individual based on factors such as size, strength, age,intelligence, peer group power, economic status, social status, religion, ethnic origin,sexual orientation, family circumstances, gender, gender identity, gender expression,race, disability or the receipt of special education; (“intimidation”)Bullying may be a symptom of racism, classism, homophobia, sexism, religious discrimination,ethnic discrimination or other forms of bias and discrimination. Perceptions about differencesare often based on stereotypes perpetuated in broader society.Bullying, including cyber-bullying, may be intentional or unintentional, direct or indirect. It cantake many forms including physical (for example, pushing, tripping), verbal (for example, namecalling, insults, threats, sexist/racist/transphobic comments), social, also known as relational (forexample, spreading rumours, intentionally excluding others, humiliating others with publicgestures) and causing harm to one’s property.2.4Student Progressive Discipline“A whole school approach that utilizes a continuum of prevention programs, interventions,supports, and consequences to address inappropriate student behaviour and to build uponstrategies that promote and foster positive behaviours.” This means that “when inappropriatebehaviour occurs, disciplinary measures should be applied within a framework that shifts thefocus from one that is solely punitive to one that is both corrective and supportive. Schoolsshould utilize a range of interventions, supports and consequences that are developmentallyand socio-emotionally appropriate and include learning opportunities for reinforcing positivebehaviour while helping students to make better choices.” (Adapted from Ontario Ministry ofEducation, (Policy/Program Memorandum No. 145, "Progressive Discipline and PromotingPositive Student Behaviour")2.5Sex TraffickingSex trafficking is a form of sexual exploitation and is a crime under the Criminal Code ofCanada. It can include recruiting, harbouring, transporting, obtaining or providing a person forthe purpose of sex. It involves the use of force, physical or psychological coercion or deception.Most individuals who are trafficked for the purpose of sexual exploitation are women and girls,but all people may be targeted.2.6Restorative PracticeA preventative and reactive approach to building caring, safe and inclusive communities byfocusing on strengthening relationships and repairing harm experienced by others. This practiceis also a valued part of the progressive discipline model, helping build, strengthen and restorehealthy relationships following an incident (Adapted from Caring and Safe Schools in Ontario:Caring and Safe Schools6

Supporting Students with Special Education Needs through Progressive Discipline,Kindergarten to Grade 12).3.3.1ResponsibilitiesThe Board of Trustees is responsible for:a) reviewing the Caring and Safe Schools policy in accordance with the priorities in theMulti-Year Plan and the approved policy review cycle;b) understanding and communicating with members of the community about the Caringand Safe Schools policy, as required;c) approving trustee membership on the Student Discipline Committee; andd) endorsing a whole school approach to caring and safe schools, which includesprogressive discipline.3.2The Director of Education is responsible for:a) implementing and operationalizing the Caring and Safe Schools policy;b) allocating staff and resources to support the procedures within the Caring and SafeSchools policy; andc) providing system leadership for creating and maintaining caring and safe schoolclimates.4.Definitions4.1Caring and Safe School ClimateConsists of the learning environment and relationships found within a school and schoolcommunity, where all members of the school community feel positive, included, and accepted,and actively promote positive behaviours and interactions. Principles of equity and inclusiveeducation are embedded in the learning environment to support a positive school climate and aculture of mutual respect. A positive school climate is a crucial component of the prevention ofinappropriate behavior.” (Policy/Program Memorandum No. 145, "Progressive Discipline andPromoting Positive Student Behaviour")4.2Student Discipline Committeea) A committee of the Board of Trustees that is authorized in accordance with theEducation Act to exercise the powers and duties of the Board with regard to studentsuspension appeals and expulsion hearings.5.ContactEducation and Community ServicesCaring and Safe Schools7

6.HistoryApproved: 1998Amended: 1999, 2002, 2009, 2010, February 2014Working Document: April 2012, July 2013, July 2018Revised: June 2019, March 2022Working Document: April 2022Caring and Safe Schools8

Board Procedure #668.1Student Suspensions1.Procedure StatementThis procedure outlines how student discretionary suspensions are administered in the YorkRegion District School Board.2.ApplicationWhere a student has committed one or more of the infractions outlined below where theinfraction has a negative impact on the school climate, whether on or off school property, orduring a school-related activity or event, the principal shall consider suspension as part of aprogressive discipline approach.These infractions, as outlined in the Education Act and Board procedure, include:a)b)c)d)e)f)g)h)i)j)k)l)m)uttering a threat to inflict serious bodily harm on another person;possessing alcohol or illegal drugs other than cannabis;being under the influence of alcohol or illegal drugs other than cannabis;swearing at a teacher or at another person in a position of authority;committing an act of vandalism that causes extensive damage to school or Boardproperty or to property located on school/Board premises;bullying or cyberbullying;possessing cannabis, unless the pupil is a medical cannabis user;being under the influence of cannabis, unless the pupil is a medical cannabis user;habitual neglect of duty (with Superintendent of Education approval only);opposition to authority;any act considered by the principal to be injurious to the moral tone of the school;any act considered by the principal to be injurious to the physical or mental well-being ofmembers of the school community; and/orany act considered by the principal to be contrary to the Board or school code ofconduct.Principals cannot suspend students from junior kindergarten to grade 3 for reasons listed above.The principal must suspend a student and consider expulsion for one or more of the infractionsidentified in Procedure #668.2 Student Expulsions, as outlined in the Education Act.A student may only be suspended once for any single incident. The number of days suspendedmay increase based on additional information; however, only one suspension can be issued perincident.A student who is suspended from a school is not permitted to be on Board property orparticipate in school-related activities or events including, but not limited to, all school buildings,Caring and Safe Schools9

grounds, transportation, field trips, except for the purposes of attending the AlternativeClassroom and Counselling for Expelled and Suspended Students (ACCESS).A suspension shall be for no less than one school day and no more than 20 school days.In exceptional circumstances, a student suspended from day school may be permitted tocontinue attending continuing education classes and/ or non-school related activities on Boardproperty. A student suspended from continuing education classes may continue attending dayschool classes.3.ResponsibilitiesInvestigating and Suspending3.1Superintendents shall:a) advise on the suspension duration, supports for students, and mitigating and otherfactors, as requested by principal.3.2Principals shall:3.2.1upon learning about and/or investigating an incident;a) act in accordance with the Police and School Board Protocol, as required,b) ensuring the parent(s)/guardian(s) or adult student are consulted, as appropriate, andc) engage the support of the superintendent and relevant student services staff, asrequired;d) when addressing a situation related to bullying, adhere to the Supporting AppropriateBehaviour and Bullying Prevention and Intervention procedure, using practices that support positive behaviour and bias-free progressive discipline(taking mitigating and other factors into account not only in response to inappropriatebehaviour but in all interactions with students along the “continuum of progressivediscipline”), determine appropriate action which may include suspension;3.2.2when suspending a student;a) determine the duration,b) make all reasonable efforts to orally inform the adult student, or the student and theirparent(s)/guardian(s) within 24 hours,c) inform all staff who support the student including, but not limited to classroom teachers,special education resource teacher, student success teacher and coach(s),d) coordinate the school work to be completed,e) provide written notice to the superintendent, adult student, or the student and theirparent(s)/guardian(s) that includes; the reason, the duration, whether the suspension is from day school, summer school or continuing educationclasses or both, andCaring and Safe Schools10

information about the ACCESS program if the suspension is for six or more schooldays, as appropriate, and information about the right to appeal including, but not limited to, relevant policies,procedures and guidelines, and contact information for the superintendent,f) file and retain a copy of the suspension letter in the Ontario Student Record; until the end of current school year for non-violent incidents with no furtheroccurrences, at a minimum, for five years for violent incidents with no further occurrences, at a minimum, and asrequired for repeat occurrences,g) understand that if notice is sent by regular mail or courier, it will be deemed to have beenreceived on the fifth school day after it was sent;h) understand that if notice is sent by fax or email, it is deemed to have been received thefirst school day after it was sent; andi) arrange a re-entry meeting with the student, the parent(s)/guardian(s), staff andcommunity partners, following the suspension, as appropriate.3.2.3for students who will be attending the ACCESS program;a) ensure all appropriate information has been forwarded to the principal overseeing theprogram,b) complete the student action plan,c) forward the student’s Individual Education Plan and Safety Plan, where appropriate,d) ensure an intake meeting is arranged with the principal overseeing the program;e) forward school work to be completed, andf) consult with superintendent regarding transportation.3.3Teachers and other staff who support students in a school or classroom shall:a) in cases where a student is suspected of engaging in any activity for which suspensionor expulsion must be considered file a Safe Schools Incident Reporting Form Part Iand/or a report in a timely manner as outlined in the Supporting Appropriate Behaviourand Bullying Prevention and Intervention procedure3.3.1Teachers shall:a) in conjunction with the principal, provide school work for the student to complete duringthe suspension, andb) consider adjusting due dates of assessments based on student needs.3.3.2Student Services shall:a) support superintendents and principals, as required.3.3.3Adult students, or students and students’ parent(s)/guardian(s) shall:a) participate in the principal’s investigation;b) review information provided by the principal about the suspension and appeal process;c) understand that;Caring and Safe Schools11

if notice is sent by mail or courier, it will be deemed to have been received on the fifthschool day after it was sent, if notice is sent by fax or email, it is deemed to have been received the first schoolday after it was sent, the ACCESS program will be offered for students who are suspended for six or moredays, and secondary students are responsible for their own transportation to ACCESS;d) attend a re-entry meeting, as appropriate.3.3.4Students who have been suspended shall:a) comply with the conditions outlined in the suspension letter;b) reflect and engage in supportive or restorative conversations; andc) complete work assigned.Appeal Process3.4Student Discipline Committee shall:a) consider suspension appeals in accordance with the Education Act and Board policy;b) include only the following individuals in an appeal hearing; the superintendent(s) identified to support caring and safe schools, or designate, the superintendent(s) identified to support schools, or designate, the principal, the adult student or student’s parent(s)/guardian(s), the student, where appropriate, interpreter and/or support person, as required, legal counsel;c) proceed with the appeal if any individual who has received proper notice of the location,date and time of the appeal fails to attend or comply with the necessary timelines;d) consider the submissions of both parties and determine whether to; uphold the suspension and its duration, modify the suspension and order an amendment to the student’s record, asnecessary, withdraw the suspension and order the record removed even when the suspensionhas been served, or issue another appropriate order; ande) communicate the final decision in writing to the adult student or student’sparent(s)/guardian(s), superintendent and principal.3.5Superintendent responsible for caring and safe schools shall:a) consult with other superintendents as required,b) if the superintendent of schools recommends the suspension be upheld, and the adultstudent or student’s parent(s)/guardian(s) continue with the appeal;c) when considering an appeal, coordinate the preparation of a report that includes; an overview of the incident and rationale, a copy of the original suspension letter,Caring and Safe Schools12

a copy of the appeal request, anda copy of the Superintendents of Education, Student Achievement and SchoolOperations report,d) provide a copy of the report to the Student Discipline Committee and the principal andensure that the item is placed on the committee’s agenda,e) inform all relevant parties of the appeal date, andf) provide the adult student or the student’s parent(s)/guardian(s) with a guide to theappeal process.3.6Superintendents of Education, Student Achievement and School Operations shall:a) upon receiving written notice of the intention to appeal, promptly advise the principal andthe adult student or the student’s parent(s)/guardian(s) that a suspension review will takeplace;b) in consultation with the principal, review the rationale, duration and mitigating or otherfactors;c) decide to uphold, modify or withdraw the suspension and communicate the decision tothe adult student or parent(s)/guardian(s), and the principal;d) if the suspension is upheld and the adult student or student’s parent(s)/guardian(s) stillwish to appeal; advise them that they must provide written notice to the superintendent of schools, notify the school principal and the Superintendent of Schools, Well-Being andEngagement, and prepare a written report on the incident, in consultation with the principal; ande) attend the appeal hearing, as required.3.7Principal shall:a) review the rationale, duration and mitigating or other factors with the superintendent ofschools and Superintendent of Schools, Well-Being and Engagement, as required; andb) attend the appeal hearing.3.8Adult Students or Parent(s)/Guardian(s) of Students shall;a) understand that they have the right to appeal a suspension;b) understand that a student will continue to serve the suspension during the appealprocess;c) understand that they must provide a written intention to appeal to the superintendent ofschools within 10 school days of the start of the suspension;d) understand that the appeal hearing must take place within 15 school days of receivingthe notice of intention to appeal, unless both parties agree to an extension;e) understand they have the right to attend the appeal hearing; andf) understand that the Student Discipline Committee’s decision is final.Caring and Safe Schools13

4.Definitions4.1Alternative Classroom and Counselling for Expelled and Suspended Students (ACCESS)An academic and counseling program designed to allows secondary students serving a longterm suspension and/or expulsion to continue with their academic program in a structured andsupportive environment.4.2SuspensionTemporary removal of a student from school for a specific period of time.Violent Incident (Adapted from Ministry of Education Policy/Program Memoranda No.120:Reporting Violent Incidents to the Ministry of Education)Any one or combination of the following that occur during school-run programs:a) possessing a weapon, including possessing a firearm;b) physical assault causing bodily harm requiring medical attention;c) sexual assault;d) robbery;e) using a weapon to cause or to threaten bodily harm to another person;f) extortion;g) hate and/or bias-motivated occurrences.5.ContactEducation and Community Services6.HistoryWorking Document: April 2012, July 2018Revised: 2002, 2009, February 2014, March 2015, June 2019, March 2021Caring and Safe Schools14

Board Procedure #668.2Student Expulsions1.Procedure StatementThis procedure outlines how student mandatory suspensions and expulsions are administeredin the York Region District School Board.2.ApplicationWhere a student has committed one or more of the infractions outlined below where theinfraction has a negative impact on the school climate, whether on or off school property, orduring a school-related activity or event, the principal will suspend the student and shallconsider expulsion:These infractions, as outlined in the Education Act, include:a) possessing a weapon or replica weapon, including possessing a firearm;b) using a weapon to cause or to threaten bodily harm to another person;c) committing physical assault on another person that causes bodily harm requiringtreatment by a medical practitioner;d) committing sexual assault;e) trafficking in weapons or illegal drugs;f) committing robbery;g) giving alcohol to a minor;h) giving cannabis to a minor;i) bullying or cyber-bullying, if, the pupil (between grades 4 to 12 only) has previously been suspended for engagingin bullying and/or cyber-bullying, and the pupil’s continuing presence in the school creates an unacceptable risk to thesafety of another person; and/or any infraction outlined in Board Procedure #668.1 Student Suspension that ismotivated by bias, prejudice or hate based on race, national or ethnic origin,language, colour, religion, sex, age, mental or physical disability, sexual orientation,gender identity, gender expression, or any other similar factor;j) the pupil’s pattern of behaviour is so refractory that the pupil’s presence is injurious tothe effective learning and/or working environment of others; and/ork) the pupil has demonstrated through a pattern of behaviour, such as, but not limited toneglect of duty, truancy or opposition to authority that he/she has not prospered by theinstruction available to him/her and that he/she is persistently resistant to making thechanges in behaviour which would enable him/her to prosper; andl) any other activity that, under a policy of a board, is an activity for which a principal mustsuspend a pupil and, therefore in accordance with this Part, conduct an investigation todetermine whether to recommend to the board that the pupil be expelled. 2007, c. 14, s.4; 2012, c. 5, s. 14.Caring and Safe Schools15

If a student in junior kindergarten to Grade 3 engages in any of the activities listed above,the principal will conduct an investigation regarding the allegations and will consult withtheir superintendent to determine if the student should be suspended.3.3.1ResponsibilitiesSuperintendent responsible for caring and safe schools shall:a) provide advice to Superintendents of Schools, as required;b) if a student is recommended for expulsion; facilitate a pre-expulsion mediation, determine if the student will be proceeding to an expulsion hearing review the expulsion report, schedule a hearing with the Student Discipline Committee, and provide written notice to the Student Discipline Committee, superintendent ofschools, the principal, and adult student or the students’ parent(s)/guardian(s) thatincludes, a statement of referral to the Student Discipline Committee, the hearing date, relevant Board policies and procedures, a copy of the suspension letter, a copy of the principal’s report, a statement that the student and parent(s)/guardian(s) have the right to respond inwriting and/or orally at the hearing,

Procedure #668.4, Violence Threat Risk Assessment Procedure #668.5, Student Progressive Discipline Procedure #668.6, Emergency Preparedness Procedure #668.7, Code of Student Conduct Procedure #668.8, Safe Welcome Program: Elementary Schools Procedure #668.9, Lockdown, School Sites Procedure #668.10, Hold-and-Secure, School Sites