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6000 Instruction

6000 Priority of Instructional Program (Policy Revised 5-14-2012)

Instruction

Priority of Instructional Program 6000


The Board of Education believes the instructional program to be its highest priority.

The Board recognizes that the key work of school boards is to establish and promote a clear vision of student achievement as the top priority of the District. The Superintendent will ensure development and implementation of a district-wide program for student achievement improvement that engages District stakeholders in a continuous improvement planning process that provides for annual review, revision as needed and reports to the community. The District’s program will be reflected in school and district improvement plans and will include, but not be limited to, the following:

  • Self-evaluation of current and prior disaggregate student achievement and behavioral data, including student and community demographics, student access to and utilization of educational opportunities to meet standards, district progress toward development and implementation of improvement programs and community satisfaction.
  • Data-driven goal setting utilizing methods recommended by the State Department of Education.
  • Action planning including provisions for accountability, professional staff development, steps to assure a safe educational environment conducive to learning, identification of local efficiencies and resources, steps to assure all students have access to the educational opportunities needed to meet the high standards of the State and District, resource allocation and realignment strategies needed to support improvement efforts.
  • The District’s program will be consistent with the requirements of the Connecticut Department of Education and reflected in school and district improvement plans.

    The Board will, in striving for continuous improvement of student achievement, annually review District and individual school data on student achievement. In addition, the Board will prioritize, allocate and realign resources as necessary.

    The Superintendent of Schools shall present regular evidence of student progress and of program modifications based on evaluations which are consistent with district goals and objectives. Evidence of educational productivity is important in evaluating the educational system, for guiding improvement efforts, and in developing public support for the schools.

    REVISED: May 14, 2012


    6010 Goals and Objectives (Policy Revised 5-14-2012)

    Instruction

    Goals and Objectives 6010


    Repeated as Sections 0200 and 0210

    pg. 1 of 3

    Goals

    The Board is aware of its responsibilities to the community for whose benefit the school district has been established. Further, the Board recognizes that its current decisions will influence the course of education in the district’s schools for years to come. This requires attention to immediate needs as well as a comprehensive perspective and long range planning. The Board is also committed to having each student attain his or her maximum potential by participating in a challenging educational program. To achieve excellence, the Vernon Public School System will promote continuous improvement in all areas of its educational system and will seek the active support of the community.

    This requires that appropriate efforts be made to identify the special needs and abilities of each student so effective means of developing skills and talents can be ascertained and implemented. The focus, though usually in a group setting, will be on the individual student. To achieve these goals, the school system depends primarily on the competence and dedication of the professional staff, but also welcomes community participation.

    Objectives: The Vernon school system shall focus on developing, applying, and reinforcing proficiency in the fundamental tools of learning - the basic skills of communication and computation. In successive levels and years, these basic skills are applied to an ever widening range of academic and practical disciplines, as well as to more complex skills and aesthetic experiences. The curriculum at all levels shall be planned, sequential, challenging and motivational and will encourage creativity and allow flexibility.

    The system’s staff and curriculum shall foster each student’s total development - intellectual, physical, emotional, social, occupational and cultural. Realizing that the interests and abilities of individuals vary, the primary goal of the Vernon educational system is to assist students to move continuously toward the highest level of potential development. Students shall be guided on how to learn effectively so they develop the will and capacity for life-long learning to benefit both themselves and the society in which they live. The overall learning process shall be focused on helping students to value the lessons of the past and welcome the uncertainties and challenges of the future, while coping effectively with the demands of the present.

    Performance Objectives: In achieving its goals, the Board will take the appropriate steps necessary to attract, support and maintain a highly qualified and motivated professional staff and will utilize an effective system of evaluation and accountability to maintain high standards.

    Instruction

    Goals and Objectives - continued 6010

    pg. 2 of 3

    In light of the foregoing, the Board’s educational planning will focus on a dynamic program of planned experiences which shall:

    1. enable students to grow academically, socially, and emotionally by encouraging them to accept responsibility and understand the consequences of their decisions

    2. provide students with opportunities to master basic skills in English, including the ability to read, write, listen, speak proficiently and effectively, to critically evaluate information; to manipulate basic mathematical concepts; to acquire a general knowledge of the sciences; and to become competent members of society

    3. enable students to apply knowledge, problem-solving techniques, creativity, and current technology from the various disciplines to the challenges presented by our changing society and physical environment

    4. enable students to pursue independent thought and research through both assigned and self-initiated projects, as well as to demonstrate decision-making, reasoning and problem-solving skills, alone and in groups

    5. enable students to explore the world’s cultural heritage through experiences which help to broaden social awareness

    6. provide curricular and co-curricular activities which will give students the opportunity to grow aesthetically, emotionally, intellectually, physically, and socially through interaction with others

    7. provide appropriate programs and services for all students with special needs

    8. enable students to develop aesthetic appreciation through integral experiences in art, music, science, literature and languages

    9. enable students to acquire the skills necessary for intellectual growth using a variety of resources for information, including print materials, media, computers and other technology to support their learning

    Instruction

    Goals and Objectives - continued 6010

    pg. 3 of 3

    10. enable students to develop as healthy and self-reliant individuals through health and physical education programs and services

    11. provide opportunities for the development of skills and knowledge which will lead to mature decision making and economic independence, to be good managers of money, property and resources

    12. enable students to develop personal and vocational skills through appropriate grade level experiences in foreign language, as well as the practical and technical arts

    13. enable students to meet their academic, personal, social, emotional, and vocational needs through guidance, counseling, and special services

    14. enable students to learn the responsibilities of citizenship in a democracy, emphasizing participation in global, national, and community affairs through practical curricula and co-curricula activities in the social sciences

    15. enhance the capabilities of the staff by setting expectations and by providing opportunities for growth through professional development and other experiences

    16. foster greater community understanding and support by encouraging citizen involvement in school activities and programs

    17. provide for staff and students a safe and orderly environment which is conducive to the learning process.

    The Board will annually set goals for the district. Each school will set annual goals which have aligned with the district goals. Progress towards meeting the goals will be reported annually.

    Legal Reference:

    Connecticut General Statutes

    10-4a Educational interests of state defined, as amended by PA 97-290 PA 97-290, An Act Enhancing Educational Choices and Opportunities.

    10-220 Duties of Boards of Education.

    REVISED: May 14, 2012

    December 12, 2001

    6111 School Calendar (Policy Revised 2-27-2012)

    Instruction

    School Calendar 6111


    Page 1 of 2

    The Superintendent shall recommend school calendars to the Board of Education. Such calendars must meet all statutory requirements. The Board of Education may modify those calendars within statutory requirements,

    To develop a common calendar for school districts that are part of the Capitol Region Education Council, the following guidelines will be used by the superintendent of schools.

    1. Opening of Schools:

    Schools may open before Labor Day.

    2. Vacation Schedule:

    A vacation schedule shall be determined annually by the board by April 1.

    3. Holidays:

    a. School shall be closed for students on all legal Connecticut holidays in December and January.

    b. School may be closed for students on legal holidays September through November and February through June. Schools shall be closed the day following Thanksgiving.

    4. School Year:

    School will continue to be in session until the requirements of both Connecticut General Statutes and the requirements of the Vernon Board of Education have been met.

    5. Graduation Date:

    The Board, in establishing a graduation date, may establish for any school year a firm date which is no earlier than the one-hundred eighty-fifth day in the adopted school calendar. The graduation date may be modified, if necessary, after April first in any school year by the Board establishing a firm graduation date which, at the time of such establishment, provides for at least 180 days of school.

    Legal Reference:

    Connecticut General Statutes

    I-4 Days designated as legal holidays.

    10-15 Towns maintain schools.

    10-16 Length of school day.

    10-29a Certain days to be proclaimed by governor. Distribution and number of proclamations.

    10-261 Definitions.

    PA 95-182 An Act Concerning Reduction of Education Mandates.

    Instruction

    School Calendar 6111

    Page 2 of 2

    PA 96-108 An Act Concerning Student Use of Telecommunication Devices and the Establishment of

    Graduation Dates.

    Revised: February 27, 2012

    December 10, 2001


    6112 School Day (Policy Revised 2-27-2012)

    Instruction

    School Day 6112


    pg. 1 of 2

    Grades 1 - 12. The Superintendent of Schools shall ensure that:

    1. The school year provides at least the minimum number of days as required by state statutes.

    2. The school year provides a minimum of 900 hours of actual school work. In meeting this requirement, no more than seven (7) hours of actual school work on a given day shall be credited toward meeting the 900 hour minimum.

    3. In the event of early school closings or delayed openings because of weather, the district will still provide a minimum of 900 hours of actual school work by the conclusion of the school year.

    4. Should it be necessary to consider alternative scheduling in any single school year, because of unusual circumstances which could interfere with fulfilling the 180 day school year requirement, the Superintendent shall recommend to the Board a plan for alternative scheduling to be transmitted to the State Board of Education for its consideration and possible approval.

    Kindergarten. The Superintendent of Schools shall insure that:

    1. The school year provides at least 180 days of school.

    2. The school year provides a minimum of 450 hours of actual school work. In meeting this requirement, no more than seven (7) hours of actual school work on a given day shall be credited toward meeting the 450 hour minimum school year.

    3. In the event of an early school closing or delayed opening because of weather, either the morning or afternoon session shall count as a school day.

    4. In the event of an early closing because of weather, the kindergarten session shall count as a school day, regardless of its length.

    Instruction

    School Day - continued 6112

    pg. 2 of 2

    Legal Reference:

    Connecticut General Statutes

    10-15 Towns to maintain schools.

    10-16 Length of school day.

    (As amended by PA 96-161. An Act Concerning Reduction of Education Mandates.)

    10-16b Prescribed courses of study.

    10-220 Duties of boards of education.

    Revised: February 27, 2012

    December 10, 2001

    6112.1 Opening Exercises, Observations, Ceremonies, Programs (Policy Reviewed 12-12-2011)

    Instruction

    Opening Exercises, Observations, Ceremonies, Programs 6112.1


    Silent Meditation

    The Board directs that the administration shall provide for students and teachers the opportunity to observe an appropriate period of time for silent meditation at the beginning of each school day.

    Pledge of Allegiance

    The Board further directs that an opportunity to say the Pledge of Allegiance shall be provided each school day. Participation in the recitation of the Pledge is voluntary. Non-participants are expected to maintain order and decorum appropriate to the school environment.

    In observances of legal, state, and national holidays, recognition may be made as appropriate to the historical and cultural value of such holidays.

    Ceremonial events shall be conducted as appropriate to the occasion, with sensitivity and respect toward pupils whose cultural backgrounds may differ from that of the event being observed.

    Special school programs are valuable components of the total education program, and teachers shall be free to use music, literature, drama, poetry, art and dance, with origins in any faith, based upon the artistic merit and/or performance suitability of the available materials and the interests and capabilities of the teachers and pupils producing the program. Similar academic criteria shall apply to any aspect of the curriculum.

    Students and teachers shall have the right to refuse, for reasons of conscience (religious, political or philosophical) to participate in or attend any of the above mentioned activity or program which they deem contrary to personal beliefs. Such students shall remain quiet and non-disruptive during such exercises.

    Legal Reference:

    Connecticut General Statutes

    10-16a Silent Meditation

    West Virginia State Board of Education vs. Barenette, 319 U.S. 624

    PA 02-119 An Act Concerning Bullying Behavior in Schools and Concerning the Pledge of Allegiance

    Reviewed: December 12, 2011

    Revised: 10/15/02


    6113 Class Size (Policy Revised 12-12-2011)

    Instruction

    Class Size 6113


    pg. 1 of 2

    The Board of Education and the Vernon Education Association recognize that the pupil-teacher ratio is an important aspect of an effective educational program. Therefore, they agree that the present policy of the Board as administered by the Superintendent is to have class sizes which are reasonable and which permit effective instruction of students. In an effort to clarify this position, the following policy guidelines are established:

    Elementary Division:

    1. The recommended pupil-teacher ratio shall be as follows:

    Grades K and 1:18 students per class

    Grades 2 and 3:20 students per class

    Grades 4 and 5:22 students per class

    2. Should class size exceed these ratios by 10%, the Superintendent, in conjunction with the principal and staff of the affected school, will arrange additional support for the affected class.

    3. Should enrollments at any grade level continue to increase, a committee of the principal and staff of the affected school will make recommendations to the Superintendent to bring class sizes within the guidelines set by the Board of Education.

    4. Additional Support which may be considered includes, but are not limited to:

    a. providing additional hours of paraprofessional assistance;

    b. redistribution of students;

    c. transfer of staff;

    d. other alternatives recommended by the Superintendent and approved by the

    Board.

    Instruction

    Class Size 6113

    pg. 2 of 2

    5. Should classes decrease by 25% or more from the minimum levels, attempts will be made to consolidate classes through the transfer of staff and/or students and/or other alternatives as proposed by the Superintendent and approved by the Board of Education.

    6. The above policies do not apply to Student Development Services programs.

    The Secondary Division:

    The overall basic recommendation may be summarized as follows:

    1. Regular ClassesMinimum of 15

    Maximum of 25

    2. CD/General School YearMinimum of 12

    Maximum of 20

    3. Remedial/Practical ClassesMinimum of 10

    Maximum of 15

    4. A 10% flexibility factor should be considered with both the minimum and maximum figures such that any single class may exceed the maximum or be less than the minimum by 10%.

    5. Exceptions to the general sizes may occur due to number of stations in labs or based on safety and space considerations. Some of the areas involved are science, family and consumer science, technology education, art, music, business and vocational agriculture.

    6. Student development services programs are not subject to the above guidelines but will be controlled by PPT results.

    Revised:December 12, 2011

    February 11, 2008

    December 10, 2001

    6114 Emergency and Disaster Preparedness (Policy Revised 6-25-2012)

    Instruction

    Emergency and Disaster Preparedness 6114


    pg. 1 of 2

    General: All employees of the school system are responsible for promoting student and employee safety, including fire prevention measures and development of a sensitivity among students and employees about the importance of effective emergency procedures.

    District staff shall be prepared to respond immediately and responsibly to any combination of events which threaten to result in a disaster as well as to a disaster when it occurs.

    The Superintendent of schools shall develop system wide emergency procedures, and principals shall maintain specific building regulations and procedures for fire, bomb threats, civil defense, and other emergencies.

    Fire alarm systems, and regular and emergency school exits shall be maintained in good working order.

    First Aid: The Superintendent shall ensure that at least one person at each school site holds current first aid and/or CPR certification.

    Fire Emergencies: In such emergencies, the primary concern of the Vernon Board of Education is the safe, orderly evacuation of all individuals and secondarily, the building and contents. If a fire or indications of a fire such as smoke, unusual heat, smoldering wires, etc., are discovered in any school, following the sounding of the alarm signal to evacuate the building, the fire department shall be called immediately. The State of Connecticut requires a minimum of ten (10) regular fire drills per school year - one per month. All students and employees shall be required to leave the building during such drills.

    A crisis response drill shall be substituted for one of the required monthly school fire drills every three months. The format of the crisis response drill shall be developed in consultation with the appropriate local law enforcement agency. Further, a representative of the law enforcement agency may supervise and participate in any of the required crisis response drills.

    The Superintendent shall, in August of each school year, request each principal to review and assess all fire safety procedures with staff. The fire chiefs will be invited to provide additional information if necessary. In addition, the Superintendent shall receive the written plan from each principal for the respective school. These plans will be reviewed and discussed as appropriate.

    Instruction

    Emergency and Disaster Preparedness 6114

    pg. 2 of 2

    THE ESSENTIAL ELEMENT IN ANY EMERGENCY IS PREVENTION OF PANIC. PRINCIPALS AND TEACHERS NEED TO PROVIDE CLEAR DIRECTION AND SUPERVISION TO MAINTAIN APPROPRIATE STAFF AND STUDENT BEHAVIOR IN EMERGENCY CIRCUMSTANCES.

    (cf 5114 Suspension/Expulsion)

    (cf 5141.6 Crisis Response)

    (cf 6114.3 Bomb Threats)

    Legal References:

    Connecticut General Statutes

    10-221 Board of Education to prescribe rules

    10-231 Fire drills (as amended by PA 00-220 and PA 09-131)

    52-557b "Good Samaritan law". Immunity from liability for emergency medication assistance, first aid or medication by injection. School personnel not required to administer or render.

    18 U.S.C. & 921; 8921

    REVISED: June 25, 2012

    6114.3 Bomb and Toxic Substances Threats (Policy Adopted 6-25-2012)

    Instruction

    Bomb and Toxic Substances Threats 6114.3


    Page 1 of 2

    The Board recognizes that bomb threats are a significant concern to the schools. Whether real and carried out or intended as a prank or for some other purpose, a bomb threat represents a potential danger to the safety and welfare of students and staff and to the integrity of school property. Bomb threats disrupt the instructional program and learning environment and also place significant demands on school financial resources and public safety services.

    Any bomb threat will be regarded as an extremely serious matter and treated accordingly. The Board directs the Superintendent to react promptly and appropriately to information concerning bomb threats and to initiate or recommend suitable disciplinary action.

    Definitions

    1) A “bomb” means an explosive, incendiary or poison gas bomb, grenade, rocket, missile, mine, or other destructive device.

    2) A “look-alike bomb” means any apparatus or object that conveys the appearance of a bomb or other destructive device.

    3) A “bomb threat” is the communication, by any means, whether verbal or non-verbal, that a bomb has been, or will be, placed on school premises, including possession of a bomb or look-alike bomb on school premises.

    4) “School premises” means any school property, school buses and any location where any school activities may take place.

    5) “Toxic or hazardous substance or material” means any material or substance, including biomedical materials or organisms, that, when placed as threatened, could be harmful to humans.

    6)

    No person shall make, or communicate by any means, whether verbal or non-verbal, a threat that a bomb has been, or will be placed on school premises. Because of the potential for evacuation of the school and other disruption of school operations, placement of a bomb or of a look-alike bomb on school premises will be considered a threat.

    It is also a violation of Board policy to communicate by any means that any toxic or hazardous substance or material has been placed, or will be placed, on school premises with the intent to endanger the safety and welfare of students and staff and/or to disrupt the operations of the schools.

    Instruction

    Bomb and Toxic Substances Threats 6114.3

    Page 2 of 2

    Bomb Threats

    The Superintendent or his/her designee shall be responsible for developing and implementing procedures specific to bomb threats as part of the District’s Crisis Response Plan. These procedures are intended to inform administrators and staff of appropriate protocols to follow in the event that a bomb threat is received.

    (cf 5114 Suspension/Expulsion/Due Process)

    (cf 5131.7 Weapons and Items used as Weapons)

    (cf 5141.6 Crisis Response)

    (cf 6114 Emergency and Disaster Preparedness)

    Legal Reference:

    18 U.S.C. & 921; 8921

    ADOPTED: June 25, 2012

    6121 Non-discrimination in the Instructional Program (Policy Reviewed 12-12-2011)

    Instruction

    Nondiscrimination in the Instructional Program 6121


    The school system pledges to avoid discriminatory actions and seeks to foster good human and educational relations which will help to attain:

    1. equal rights and opportunities for students and staff members in the school community.

    2. equal opportunity for all students to participate in the total school program of the schools.

    3. continual study and development of curricula toward improving human relations and understanding and appreciating cultural differences.

    4. training opportunities for improving staff ability and responsiveness to educational and social needs.

    5. opportunities in educational programs which are broadly available to all students, an appropriate learning environment for students which includes (1) adequate instructional books, supplies, materials, equipment, staffing, facilities and technology, (2) equitable allocation of resources among district schools, and (3) a safe school setting.

    Each student, at the time s/he becomes eligible for participation, will be advised of his/her right to an equal opportunity to participate in school programs without discrimination of any kind.

    Legal Reference: Connecticut General Statutes

    10-15 Towns to maintain schools.

    10-15c Discrimination in public schools prohibited.

    10-18a Contents of textbooks and other general instructional materials.

    10-226a Pupils of racial minorities.

    10-145a(b) Certificates of qualification for teachers; intergroup relations pingtrans.

    10-220 Duties of boards of education.

    Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, 20 U.S.C.,1681 et seq. Section 504, U.S. Rehabilitation Act, 1973, 29 U.S.C. 791

    Policy Reviewed: December 12, 2011

    Policy Revised: December 10, 2001

    October 25, 2010


    6141 Curriculum Design and Development (Policy Revised 2-13-2012)

    INSTRUCTION

    Curriculum Design and Development 6141


    Curriculum development shall be guided by:

    1. Needs assessments and information concerning the education of district

    Students;

    2. Range of student abilities, aptitudes, and interests;

    3. Aspirations of school district residents for students;

    4. Mobility of district population;

    5. Avoidance of discrimination;

    6. Reduction of duplication of effort and repetitive curricula among various school levels and coordination of courses of study and syllabi;

    7. Provisions of negotiated agreements.

    The curriculum development/revision process will be conducted by a District Curriculum Committee that has the responsibility to recommend, develop, review, and approve all curricula for the District, as outlined in our Curriculum Development Handbook. Said curricula shall be subject to the approval of the Board of Education. Teachers shall teach within the approved curricula.

    Legal Reference: Connecticut General Statutes

    10-16b Prescribed courses of study

    10-16c et seq. re family life education

    10-17 English language to be medium of instruction

    10-17 et seq. re Bilingual instruction

    10-18 Courses in United States history, government and duties and responsibilities of

    Citizenship

    10-18a Contents of textbooks and other general instructional materials

    10-18b et seq. re Firearms safety programs

    10-19 Effect of alcohol, nicotine or tobacco and drugs to be taught. Training of personnel.

    Evaluation of programs by Alcohol and Drug Abuse Commission and Department

    of Education.

    10-19a et seq. re Substance Abuse Prevention Team

    10-24 Course in motor vehicle operation and highway safety

    10-21 et.seq re Vocational education and cooperation with business

    10-220 Duties of Boards of Education as amended by PA 08-153

    10-221a High School Graduation requirements

    cf 6121 Nondiscrimination: Instructional Program

    cf 6140 Curriculum

    Revised: February 13, 2012

    Revised: December 10, 2001


    6141.1 Challenged Instructional Materials (Policy Revised 2-13-2012)

    Instruction

    Challenged Instructional Materials 6141.1


    pg. 1 of 2

    Despite care taken to select materials that are needed and appropriate, objections to a selection may be made by the resident public. The responsibility of the staff must be defended when materials are selected within the guidelines established by this educational materials policy.

    Any resident citizen or parent/guardian of a student may make a complaint regarding materials used in the schools. When a citizen disagrees with the content of a particular media in the schools, the complainant should arrange for a meeting with the librarian and/or principal of the school to seek resolution of the matter in an amicable manner. All objections to materials should be settled informally, if possible. Challenged materials will remain in use throughout the challenge process.

    If at the conclusion of this informal meeting, the complainant is not satisfied, and still believes that a particular work should be removed because of content, and the librarian and principal believe that the material should remain in the school, then the complainant should be given the form obtainable from the Office of the Superintendent and which is drawn from the National Council of the Teachers of English. The form should be completed and returned by the complainant to the principal of the school.

    Initial action at the school level following the submission of the complaint on the form identified, shall be taken no later than fifteen school days after receipt on the form.

    If, upon return of the form the complainant still believes the cited material should be removed from the school, then the Library Director should be notified and a meeting should be arranged with the complainant and the principal of the school. If the matter is still not resolved to the satisfaction of the complainant, then the process outlined below should be followed:

    1. The Superintendent shall establish an ad hoc review committee which may include some of the following:

  • A teacher competent in the area of the content covered by the material
  • Administrators, directors, and supervisors appropriate to the level and/or subject for which the material is used.
  • A media specialist
  • Others who may be asked to serve on this committee include: a member of the Board of Education, a student representative, a member of the community.
  • Instruction

    Challenged Instructional Materials - continued 6141.1

    pg. 2 of 2

    2. A written report from the review committee shall be submitted to the Superintendent. Within 45 calendar days of the meeting of the committee, the decision of the Superintendent shall be provided to the complainant.

    3. Should the decision of the Superintendent not satisfy the person requesting the evaluation, the Board of Education may hold a special hearing to review the Superintendent’s decision.

    4. Once instructional material has been challenged and evaluated, the material cannot be subject to further challenge without special approval by the Board of Education.

    In all cases, the decision to retain or reject any challenged instructional materials shall be made on the basis of whether the material represents life in its true proportions, whether circumstances are realistically dealt with, and whether the material has literary or social value. Factual material shall be included in all instructional material collections.

    Revised: February 13, 2012

    Revised: December 10, 2001

    6141.2 Separation of Church and State (Policy Revised 2-13-2012)

    INSTRUCTION

    Curriculum Design/Development 6141.2

    Separation of Church and State


    Page 1 of 3

    In accordance with the mandate of the Constitution of the United States prohibiting the establishment of religion, it is the policy of this Board that the public schools will, at all times and in all ways, be neutral in matters of religion.

    This requirement of neutrality need not preclude nor hinder the public school in fulfilling its responsibility to educate students to be tolerant and respectful of religious diversity. The district also recognizes that one of its educational responsibilities is to advance the students’ knowledge and appreciation of the role that religion has played in the social, cultural, and historical development of civilization.

    Therefore, the district will approach religion from an objective, curriculum-related perspective, encouraging all students and staff members to be aware of the diversity of beliefs and respectful of each other’s religious and/or non-religious views. In that spirit of respect, students and staff members may be excused from participating in activities that are contrary to their religious beliefs.

    As required by the No Child Left Behind Act, the Superintendent will, by October 1 of each year, certify in writing to the state that students of the District are not prevented by policy or rule from participating in constitutionally protected prayer. The Superintendent will ensure that the staff, parents/guardians and students are made aware of the parameters of acceptable religious speech and actions. The Superintendent will also distribute guidelines to each school concerning religion in the schools, after such guidelines/regulations have been approved by the Board attorney and reviewed by the Board.

    Holiday Celebrations and Observances

    The building Principal is responsible for monitoring compliance with this policy. Pertinent information will be included in the student, parent and staff handbooks.

    Absence for Religious Observations

    INSTRUCTION

    Curriculum Design/Development 6141.2

    Separation of Church and StatePage 2 of 3

    Student absences for religious observances shall be excused. Furthermore, such absences should not prohibit receipt of attendance related awards nor impact student grades or participation in school events.

    Recognition of Religious Holidays

    The objective study of religious holidays provides a natural opportunity to promote an appreciation for and respect of diversity. Learning opportunities should extend beyond Judaeo-Christian beliefs, reflecting the diversity of global cultures.

    1. Recognition of religious holidays will not dominate the educational program and must support curricular objectives.

    2. All religions must be afforded equal dignity, but none advanced nor

    disparaged.

    3. Holiday and seasonal decorations shall not promote any religion and shall not require student participation.

    4. Programs should focus on seasonal rather than religious themes

    inclusive of concerts, enrichment programs and school fundraisers.

    5. Performances which recognize holidays must be of an artistic nature, not religious. Religious music must not dominate any school program. Program selection should not, by their nature, exclude students from participation.

    6. The cafeteria staff will consider religious dietary restrictions when planning menus (non-meat meals, limiting pork to one menu choice).

    7. Parents may exclude their children from programs involving the recognition of religious holidays or if celebration is in conflict with family beliefs. A written request for exclusion should be sent to the Principal.

    Silent Meditation

    The Board directs that the administration shall provide for students and teachers the opportunity to observe an appropriate period of time for silent meditation at the beginning of each school day.

    Pledge of Allegiance

    Students will be offered the opportunity to recite the Pledge of Allegiance

    INSTRUCTION

    Curriculum Design/Development 6141.2

    Separation of Church and StatePage 3 of 3

    to the United States Flag at least once during each school day.

    Participation in reciting the Pledge of Allegiance is voluntary.

    Students may refuse to participate in reciting the Pledge of Allegiance for

    any reason, including religious, political, philosophical or personal

    reasons. Non-participants are expected to maintain order and decorum

    appropriate to the school environment.

    Legal References: First Amendment, the United States Constitution

    No Child Left Behind Act 2001

    Engel v. Vitale, 370 U.S. 421 (1962

    Lenon v. Kurtzman, 403 U.S. 602 (1971)

    Lee v. Weisman, 505 U.S. 577 (1992)

    Lamb’s Chapel v. Center Moriches Union Free School District, 508 U.S.

    384 (1993)

    Connecticut General Statutes

    10-161 Silent Meditation

    10-230 Flags in schoolrooms and schools. Policy on the reciting of the

    “Pledge of Allegiance”

    Policy revised: February 13, 2012

    Policy revised: March 11, 2002


    6141.3 Acceptable Use of Technology (Policy Revised 10-27-2014)

    Instruction

    Acceptable Use of Technology 6141.3


    pg. 1 of 5

    The school district believes in the educational value of communications, the Internet, and electronic information services, and recognizes their potential to support its educational program, the curriculum and student learning. The Vernon School district will make every effort to protect students and teachers from any potential misuses or abuses resulting from experience with an electronic information service. Therefore, it is imperative that members of the school community conduct themselves in a lawful, responsible, decent, ethical, and polite manner while using any network resource.

    Guidelines for General Use

    It is important to recognize that with increased access to computers and to people all over the world also comes the availability of controversial material that may not be of educational value in the context of the school setting. Further, the school district recognizes the importance of each individual's judgment regarding appropriate conduct in maintaining a quality resource system. While this policy does not attempt to articulate all required or proscribed behavior, it does seek to assist in such judgment by providing the following guidelines.

    1. All use of the Internet, electronic services or network resources must be in support of educational objectives or research.

    2. Any electronic mail accounts shall be used only by the authorized owner of the account. Account owners are ultimately responsible for all activity under their account.

    3. All communication and information accessible via a network should be assumed to be private.

    4. Any use of the district’s computing resources or networks for illegal or inappropriate purposes, accessing in appropriate materials in a public school environment, or supporting such activities is prohibited. Inappropriate is defined as materials that are identified as such by the rules and policies of the Vernon Board of Education. Language that is deemed to be vulgar is also prohibited. Illegal activity shall be defined as a violation of the intended use of the service or network.

    5. Any use of network resources for commercial purposes, financial gain, product advertisement, political lobbying, or any attempt to disrupt the use of the services by others, is prohibited.

    Instruction

    Acceptable Use of Technology – continued 6141.3

    pg. 2 of 5

    6. The Board of Education has no control over the information available on the Internet. Sites accessible via the Internet may contain material that is illegal, defamatory, inaccurate, or potentially offensive to some people. The Vernon Public School District follows all Children’s Internet Protection (CIPA) regulations in order to protect its students and staff from inappropriate material.

    7. Violations of the provisions stated in this policy may result in suspension, dismissal, or revocation of access privileges to the Internet, electronic services or district networks.

    The Superintendent shall identify one administrator who will have responsibility for implementing this policy, establishing procedures, and supervising access privileges.

    Guidelines for Student Use

    The use of district network resources is a privilege. Students at the elementary level may use the internet or other network resources only when supervised by a teacher or paraprofessional. Guidelines for the use of these network resources by elementary students will be developed by the person designated by the Superintendent.

    Students in grades 6 - 12 who wish to use district network resources that are available to them may do so provided that they:

    1. Read and agree to the Acceptable Use Policy;

    2. Sign the Acceptable Use of Technology Agreement

    3. Obtain the signature of one parent/guardian (if under the age of 18) on the Acceptable Use of Technology Agreement;

    4. Sign the BYOD User Agreement if the student is using a personally owned device;

    5. Submit the signed agreement(s) to the designated person in each building.

    Instruction

    Acceptable Use of Technology - continued 6141.3

    pg. 3 of 5

    Any parent or student who wishes to appeal any decision relative to Acceptable Use Policy should contact the Superintendent.

    ................................

    Vernon Public Schools, Vernon, Connecticut

    Internet Use Agreement

    The Board of Education is pleased to bring access to the Internet to students in the Vernon School System and believes the Internet offers vast, diverse, and unique resources to both students and teachers. Our goal is to promote educational excellence in schools by facilitating resource sharing, innovation, and communication.

    The District follows all CIPA guidelines in order to restrict access to controversial materials. However, on a global network it is impossible to control all materials and an industrious user may discover controversial information. We firmly believe that the valuable information and interaction available on the internet far outweighs the fact that users may procure material that is not consistent with the educational goals of the district.

    The smooth operation of the network relies upon the proper conduct of the end users, who must adhere to strict guidelines. These guidelines are provided so that you are aware of the responsibilities you are about to assume. In general this requires efficient, ethical and legal utilization of the network resources. If a district user violates any of these provisions, his or her privileges/account may be suspended and future access may be restricted or denied.

    Internet - Terms and Conditions

    1. Acceptable Use of Technology- Use of network resources and the Internet must be in support of education and research constant with education goals. Failure to adhere to the established guidelines may result in the loss of network access, disciplinary action and/or referral to legal authorities. Transmission of any material in violation of any United States or State regulation is prohibited. This includes, but is not limited to, copyrighted material, threatening material, or material protected by trade secret. Use for commercial activities, product advertisement or political lobbying is prohibited.

    2. Privileges - The use of the Internet is a privilege, not a right, and inappropriate use may result in a cancellation of that privilege. Teachers and Administration will deem what is inappropriate use, and the decision is final. Also, the system administrators

    Instruction

    Acceptable Use of Technology - continued 6141.3

    pg. 4 of 5

    may close an account at any time as required. The administration, faculty, and staff may request the District Internet Administrator to deny, revoke, or suspend specific user accounts.

    3. Network Etiquette – Network users are expected to abide by the generally accepted rules of network etiquette. These include, but are not limited to, the following:

    a. Be polite. Use appropriate language. Do not be abusive in your messages to others;

    b. Illegal activities are strictly forbidden;

    c. Do not reveal personal addresses or phone number d. Note that electronic mail (e-mail) is not guaranteed to be private. All email activity at any time may be monitored to ensure proper educational use. Messages relating to or in support of illegal activities may be reported to law enforcement;

    e. Use of the network in such a way that disrupts others is prohibited;

    f. All communications and information accessible via the network should be assumed to be private property.

    g. The playing of local computer or online games without express permission from a classroom teacher or administrator is prohibited.

    h. Use of social media is not allowed unless approved by a classroom teacher or administrator, and then only for educational purposes.

    i. Use of streaming media resources is only permissible for approved educational

    purposes.

    j. Use of network resources for the purposes of cyber bullying is strictly prohibited. Any individual discovered to be using network resources for bullying purposes will have their network account suspended and will be referred to administration and if appropriate, to law enforcement.

    4. The School District makes no warranties of any kind, whether expressed or implied, for the service it is providing. The district will not be liable for any damages such as loss of data resulting from delays, non-delivery, misdeliveries, or service interruptions caused by negligence, errors or omissions. The district specifically denies any responsibility for the accuracy or quality of information obtained from the Internet.

    5. Security - Security on any computer system is a high priority, especially when the system involves many users.

    Instruction

    Acceptable Use of Technology - continued 6141.3

    pg. 5 of 5

    a. Security problems discovered on a device, network or the Internet must be reported to an administrator immediately.

    b. Demonstration of network problems to others is prohibited.

    c. Unauthorized attempts to log on to the Internet as a system administrator will result in cancellation of user privileged. Use of software/hardware for the purposes of circumventing security, accessing restricted information, network monitoring, local network exploration, password discovery, spamming, creation/deployment of viruses or network disruption purposes is strictly forbidden. Anyone found to be using this type of software/hardware will

    d. have their network access revoked and such activity may be referred to law enforcement.

    e. Passwords are not to be shared with others. Sharing or using password from another is prohibited. Users who feel their password may have been discovered or used by another are required to report this immediately to a teacher or administrator.

    6. Vandalism - Vandalism will result in cancellation of privileges. Vandalism is defined as any malicious attempt to harm or destroy data of another user. This includes, but is not limited to, the uploading or creation of computer viruses. If there is any cost involved in repairing such vandalism, the cost will be assumed by the individual, the parent/guardian of a student, or the student if he/she is 18 years or older.

    (c.f.) 6141.328

    Revised: October 27, 2014

    Reviewed: February 13, 2012

    Revised: December 10, 2001

    6141.312 Migrant Students (Policy Reviewed 12-12-2011)

    Instruction

    Migrant Students 6141.312


    Page 1 of 2

    The Superintendent will develop and implement a program to address the needs of migrant children in the District.

    This program will include a means to:

    1. Identify migrant students and assess their educational and related health and social needs.

    2. Provide a full range of services to migrant students.

    3. Provide migrant children with the opportunity to meet the same statewide assessment standards that all children are expected to meet.

    4. Provide advocacy and outreach programs to migrant children and their families and professional development for District Staff as needed.

    5. Provide parents/guardians an opportunity for meaningful participation in the program.

    Migrant Education Program for Parent(s)/Guardian(s) Involvement

    Parent(s)/guardian(s) of migrant students will be involved in and regularly consulted about the development, implementation, operation, and evaluation of the migrant program.

    Parent(s)/guardian(s) of migrant students will receive instruction regarding their role in improving the academic achievement of their children.

    Migrant Child/Student Definition

    A. A “migratory child” means a child who:

    (1) is migratory agricultural worker or a migratory fisher; or

    (2) in the preceding 36 months, in order to accompany a parent, spouse, or guardian who is a migratory agricultural fisher

    (a) Has moved from one school district to another;

    Instruction

    Migrant Students 6141.312

    Page 2 of 2

    (b) As the child of a migratory fisher, resides in a school district of more than 15,000 square miles and migrates a distance of 20 miles or more to a temporary residence.

    B. Move or Moved means a change from one residence to another residence that occurs due to economic necessity.

    C. Migratory Agricultural Worker means a person has moved from one school district to another in order to obtain temporary employment or seasonal employment in agricultural work, including dairy work.

    D. Migratory Fisher means a person who, in the preceding 36 months has moved from one district or another in order to obtain temporary employment or seasonal employment in fishing work.

    Legal Reference:

    No Child Left Behind Act of 2001, §1301 et seq., 20 U.S.C. §6391 et seq., 34 C.F.R. §200.40 – 200.45

    Federal Register – July 29, 2008 – Final Rule

    34 C.F.R. Part 2000

    Policy Reviewed: December 12, 2011

    Policy adopted: October 25, 2010


    6141.326 Internet/Computer Networks Use (Policy Reviewed 12-12-2011)

    Instruction

    Internet/Computer Networks Use 6141.326


    pg. 1 of 3

    Online Social Networking

    The Internet and electronic communications have vast potential to support curriculum and student learning. The Vernon Board of Education (Board) believes internet and electronic communications should be used in school as a learning resource both in developing student literacy and providing on-going professional staff development activities. The Board realizes that existing and emerging smart technologies present new challenges to the educational community.

    The purpose of this policy is to set forth policies and guidelines for access to the District’s computer system and acceptable and safe use of Internet social networking tools/sites.

    Electronic information research skills are fundamental to preparation of citizens and future employees. Access to the District’s computer system and the Internet enables students and staff to explore global resources while exchanging messages with people around the world. The District’s computer system has a limited educational purpose, which includes its use for classroom activities, educational research and professional or career development activities. Users are expected to use Internet access through the District system to further educational and personal goals consistent with the District’s mission and school policies. The District’s computer network is considered a limited forum enabling the restriction of speech for valid educational reasons. For safety purposes, the District employs both Internet filters and firewalls.

    Students may not access social media sites using District equipment while on District property or at District-sponsored activities unless the posting is approved by a District representative/teacher/staff member. Social media websites are websites such as, but not limited to, Facebook, MySpace, You Tube, Flickr and Twitter.

    The District will not be liable for information/comments posted by students on social media websites when the student is not engaged in District activities and not using District equipment.

    The School District reserves the right to monitor, inspect, copy, review and store at any time and without prior notice any and all usage of the computer network and Internet access and any and all information transmitted or received in connection with such usage. All such information files shall be and remain the property of the School District and no user shall have any expectation of privacy regarding such materials.

    Instruction

    Internet/Computer Networks Use 6141.326

    pg. 2 of 3

    Online Social Networking (continued)

    Among the uses that are considered unacceptable and which constitute a violation of this policy are the following:

    1. Uses that violate the law or encourage others to violate the law. This includes the transmittal of offensive or harassing messages; offering for sale or use any substance the possession or use of which is prohibited by District policy; viewing, transmitting or downloading pornographic materials or materials that encourage others to violate the law; intruding into the networks or computers of others; and downloading or transmitting confidential, trade secret information, or copyrighted materials.

    2. Uses that cause harm to others or damage to their property. This includes defamation (harming another’s reputation by lies); employment of another’s password or some other user identifier that misleads message recipients into believing that someone else is communicating or otherwise using his/her access to the network or the Internet; uploading a worm, virus, “trojan horse,” “time bomb” or other harmful form of programming or vandalism; participation in “hacking” activities or any form of unauthorized access to other computers, networks, or information systems.

    3. Uses that jeopardize the security of student access and of the computer network or other networks on the Internet, for example, disclosure or sharing personal passwords with others; impersonation of another user.

    4. Uses that are commercial transactions. Students and other users may not sell or buy anything over the Internet. Private information shall not be shared.

    (cf. 6141.3 – Computer Acceptable Use Policy)

    Legal Reference: Connecticut General Statutes

    1 19(b)(11) Access to public records. Exempt records.

    10 15b Access of parent or guardians to student's records.

    10 209 Records not to be public.

    11-8a Retention, destruction and transfer of documents

    Instruction

    Internet/Computer Networks Use 6141.326

    pg. 3 of 3

    Online Social Networking

    Legal Reference: Connecticut General Statutes (continued)

    11-8b Transfer or disposal of public records. State Library Board to adopt regulations.

    46b 56 (e) Access to Records of Minors.

    Federal Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (section 438 of the General Education Provisions Act, as amended, added by section 513 of PL 93 568, codified at 20 U.S.C. 1232g.).

    Dept. of Education. 34 CFR. Part 99 (May 9, 1980 45 FR 30802) regs. implementing FERPA enacted as part of 438 of General Education Provisions Act (20 U.S.C. 1232g) parent and student privacy and other rights with respect to educational records, as amended 11/21/96.

    Children's Internet Protection Act of 2000 (HR 4577, P.L.106 554)

    Communications Act of 1934, as amended (47 U.S.C. 254[h],[I])

    Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965, as amended (20 U.S.C. 6801 et seq., Part F)

    Public Law 94-553, The Copyright Act of 1976, 17 U.S.C. 101 et. seq.

    Reno v. ACLU, 521 U.S. 844 (1997)

    Ginsberg v. New York, 390 U.S. 629, at 642, n.10 (1968)

    Board of Education v. Pico, 457 U.S. 868 (1988)

    Hazelwood School District v. Kuhlmeier, 484 U.S. 620, 267 (1988)

    Policy reviewed: December 12, 2011

    Policy adopted: October 25, 2010

    6141.328 Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) and Protocol for the Use of Technology in the Schools (Policy Adopted 11-10-2014)

    Instruction

    Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) and

    Protocol for the Use of Technology in the Schools 6141.328


    Page 1 of 3

    The Board of Education is committed to aiding students and staff in creating a 21st century learning environment where they learn to become productive digital citizens. Therefore, students and staff will be permitted to access the District’s wireless network with their personal devices during the school day. With teacher approval, students may use their own devices to access the Internet and collaborate with other students. Access to the District’s wireless network, including the Internet, shall be made available to students for instructional purposes in accordance with school policies.

    Definition of “Device”

    For purposes of BYOD, a “device” means a privately owned wireless and/or portable electronic piece of equipment that includes but is not limited to: laptops, netbooks, tablets/mp3/4 players, e-readers, and smart phones.

    Internet

    The only Internet gateway that may be accessed in the District Public Schools is the one provided by the District. Any device brought to the District will not be permitted to access outside Internet sources.

    Software

    There is no required software necessary to take part in the Bring Your Own Device program. This negates the need to have required programs loaded onto student computers. Students can access what they will need through any web browser.

    Security and Damages

    Responsibility to keep the device secure rests with the individual owner. The Vernon Public School District is not liable for any device stolen or damaged on or off campus. If the device is stolen or damaged, it will be handled through the administrative office, as are other personal items that are stolen or damaged. It is recommended that appropriate skins, decals, and other appropriate customizations be used to identify a student’s device from others. Additionally, protective cases for technology are recommended. Students are encouraged to register their devices with the main office or the building SRO. Registration will include the recording of the make, model, serial number and other identifying information.

    Instruction

    Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) and

    Protocol for the Use of Technology in the Schools 6141.328

    Page 2 of 3

    The use of technology to provide educational material is not a necessity but a privilege. When abused, privileges will be taken away. When respected, they will benefit the learning environment as a whole.

    Students and parents/guardians participating in the Bring Your Own Device/Technology program must adhere to a Student Code of Conduct, as well as all applicable board policies, particularly the Acceptable Use of Technology Policy (6141.3)

    The use of technology devices, as with any personally owned device, is strictly up to the teacher. Students will not be permitted to play games, access social media, shop or conduct any other activity on BYOD devices that is not educationally approved by the classroom teacher.

    Confiscation of Student BYOD Devices

    Teachers/Administration may confiscate student BYOD devices at any time if it is determined a student is not using their device for approved educational purposes.

    Violations of the BYOD policy may result in the student losing his/her BYOD classroom privileges for a duration to be determined by the teacher and/or administration. The classroom teacher, at their discretion, may refer violations to building administrators. Upon review by administrators, students may have their building-wide privilege to participate in the BYOD program suspended or terminated, based on the nature of the violation.

    Use of Video, Photo or Audio Capabilities of Student BYOD Devices

    Students may not film, take a picture or use the audio recording capabilities of their BYOD device without the express permission of the classroom teacher. Students are only permitted to post video, pictures or audio files to online resources when it is part of a classroom educational project and only then with teacher permission. Students who fail to follow this policy may permanently lose their right to participate in the BYOD program.

    (cf. 6141.3 Acceptable Use of Technology)

    (cf. 5114 – Suspension/Expulsion)

    (cf. 5132.81 – Use of Electronic Devices)

    (cf. 5131.911 – Bullying)

    (cf. 5131.913 – Cyberbullying)

    (cf. 5131 – Conduct)

    (cf. 5144 – Discipline)

    (cf. 6141.321 – Acceptable Computer Use Policy)

    (cf. 6141.323 – Internet Acceptable Use: Filtering)

    (cf. 6141.326 – Online Social Networking)

    Instruction

    Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) and

    Protocol for the Use of Technology in the Schools 6141.328

    Page 3 of 3

    Legal Reference: Connecticut General Statutes

    10-221 Boards of education to prescribe rules

    Adopted: November 10, 2014


    6141.8 School Readiness (Policy Revised 2-13-2012)

    Instruction

    School Readiness 6141.8


    The Board of Education recognizes the critical importance of the early years in determining the educational development of children. Insofar as resources permit, programs designed to help meet the physical, emotional, social and intellectual needs of preschool children ages three and four are encouraged. Such programs shall attempt to promote the health and safety of children and prepare them for formal schooling. In the utilization of resources, however, including available space, first priority is assigned to the regular school program for grades K through 12. A cooperative arrangement with another school district may be considered.

    The Board directs the Superintendent, in cooperation with the chief elected official of the Town, to develop and submit a plan to the State Department of Education which fulfills the requirement of C.G.S. 17b-749a and enables the district to seek funding on a competitive grant basis established for this purpose.

    In addition, recognizing the need to fulfill the statutory program requirements for school readiness programs, detailed in C.G.S. 10-16q, the Board directs that an emphasis shall be placed on a plan for the incorporation of appropriate pre-literacy practices and teacher training. In such practices, professional development for staff shall include, but is not limited to; training in pre-literacy skills development and it shall be designed to assure respect for racial and ethnic diversity.

    The Board regards parental involvement and community cooperation as an integral part of this program. A local school readiness council, its composition and duties specified by statute, shall be formed and convened by the Superintendent.

    Legal Reference:

    Connecticut General Statutes

    10-16q School Readiness Program Requirements

    17b-749a Establishment of school readiness program. Council as amended by PA 97-259 An Act Concerning School Readiness and Child Day Care.

    REVISED: February 13, 2012


    6142 Basic Instructional Program (Policy Revised 12-12-2011)

    Instruction

    Basic Instructional Program 6142


    Page 1 of 2

    The basic instructional program shall be prescribed by the Board and be in accordance with the law.

    Although learning experiences offered to students vary according to their individual needs and abilities, the program will be designed to give all students a common body of skills, understandings, attitudes, and knowledge needed for living in a democratic society.

    An atmosphere fostering healthy growth shall prevail, encouraging excellence and providing a model of productive life.

    As required by law the Board shall provide a program of instruction which shall include at least the following subject matters taught by legally qualified teachers:

    1) The Arts, meaning any form of visual and performing arts, including but not limited to: dance, music, art and theater

    2) Career Education

    3) Consumer Education

    4) Health Education, including but not limited to:

    a) human growth and development

    b) nutrition

    c) first aid

    d) disease prevention

    e) physical, mental, and emotional health including youth suicide prevention, substance abuse prevention

    f) safety, which may include, dangers of gang membership, accident prevention and instruction on AIDS (Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome)

    5) Language Arts, including

    a) reading

    b) writing

    c) grammar

    d) speaking

    e) spelling

    6) Mathematics

    7) Physical Education

    8) Science

    9) Social Studies, including but not limited to,

    a) citizenship

    b) economics

    c) geography

    d) government

    e) history

    Instruction

    Basic Instructional Program 6142

    Page 2 of 2

    10) World Languages, at least at the secondary level

    11) Vocational Education, at least at the secondary level

    World Languages may include American Sign Language provided it is taught by a qualified instructor under the supervision of a certified teacher.

    The implementation of these programs shall be the responsibility of the building principals.

    The Board may offer courses in addition to those required.

    Legal reference:

    Connecticut General Statutes

    10-16b Prescribed courses of study. (as modified by PA 97-45 and PA 97-61, PA 08-103 and PA 11-136)

    10-18 Courses in United States history, government and duties and responsibilities of citizenship.

    10-19 Teaching about alcohol, nicotine or tobacco, drugs, and acquired immune deficiency syndrome.

    REVISED: December 12, 2011


    6142.1 Family Life Education (Policy Revised 12-12-2011)

    Instruction

    Family Life Education 6142.1


    Page 1 of 2

    Family Life Education is intended to help students acquire factual knowledge, attitudes and values which will contribute to the well-being of individuals, families and society. Family life education shall include, but not be limited to:

    1. instruction in family planning, human sexuality, parenting, and nutrition;

    2. instruction to include the emotional, physical, psychological, hygienic, economic, and social aspects of family life;

    3. instruction directed toward enable students to discuss family issues effectively, including willingness and ability to listen, accepting criticism and responding with openness, frankness

    4. instruction discussing the need for students to develop and demonstrate mutual respect and love for family members.

    Helping students attain a mature and responsible attitude toward human sexuality is a continuous task of every generation. Parents have the primary responsibility to assist their children in developing moral values. Schools will attempt to support and supplement parental efforts through offering factual information and student opportunities for discussion of concerns, issues, and attitudes in sexual behavior, including traditional values.

    To comply with the provisions of the No Child Left Behind Act, the Superintendent will, in writing, notify the professional staff of the federal requirements concerning sex education and the prohibitions and restriction concerning distribution of contraceptives or materials that encourage sexual activities. The District will comply with federal guidelines concerning age appropriate sex education.

    Students, parents or guardians shall be informed of their right to exempt the student from the Family Life program.

    Legal Reference: Connecticut General Statutes

    10-16c State Board to develop family life education curriculum guides

    10-16d Family Life Education programs not mandatory

    10-16e Students not required to participate in family life programs

    Instruction

    Family Life Education 6142.1

    Page 2 of 2

    10-16f Family Life programs to supplement required curriculum

    20 U.S.C. 7906 No Child Left Behind Act of 2001

    Revised: December 12, 2011

    6142.101 Student Wellness Policy (Policy Revised 6-22-2015)

    Instruction

    Student Wellness Policy 6142.101


    pg. 1 of 11

    The Vernon Board of Education recognizes that student’ health and success in school

    are interrelated. Schools cannot achieve their primary mission of education if students

    are not healthy and fit, physically, mentally and socially. Therefore, the Board promotes

    healthy schools, by supporting wellness, good nutrition, and regular physical activity as

    part of the total learning environment. The District supports a healthy environment

    where children learn and participate in positive dietary and lifestyle practices. Schools

    contribute to the basic health status of children by facilitating learning through the

    support and promotion of good nutrition and physical activity. Improved health

    optimizes student performance potential and ensures that no child is left behind. It is

    the Board's policy to:

    A. Provide a comprehensive learning environment for developing and practicing

    lifelong wellness behaviors.

    B. Support and promote proper dietary habits contributing to students' health status

    and academic performance.

    C. Provide opportunities for students to engage in physical activity.

    D. Establish and maintain a district-wide School Wellness Council with the purpose

    of promoting and advancing the implementation of this policy and evaluating its

    effectiveness.

    Nutrition Standards

    The Board believes that every student should develop the knowledge that will promote

    lifelong habits for good health and the skills needed for healthy eating behaviors.

    Effective nutrition education and the types of food available to students greatly influence

    eating behaviors.

    A. Education

    The Vernon School District has a comprehensive curriculum approach to nutrition in

    Pre-Kindergarten through 12th grade. All Pre-K-12 instructional staff will be

    encouraged to integrate nutritional themes from the Connecticut Department of

    Education’s Healthy and Balanced Living Curriculum Framework into daily lessons

    when appropriate.

    Instruction

    School Wellness Policy 6142.101

    pg. 2 of 11

    1. At the elementary level, nutrition topics are integrated into the curriculum.

    2. At the middle school level, nutrition education is part of the required 6th grade

    curriculum and a component of the Unified Arts curriculum in 7th and 8th grades.

    3. At the high school level, nutrition education is part of the freshmen and

    sophomore health program.

    B. Food Services

    1. Guidelines for Food Served/Sold to Students during School Hours

    a. School Hours are defined as the period from midnight before the beginning of the

    school day to 30 minutes after the end of the official school day.

    b. The District shall provide school meals which meet the nutritional standards

    required by state and federal school breakfast and lunch programs. All

    meals served in school before the end of the last lunch period shall conform

    to the U.S. Dietary Guidelines for Americans.

    c. Food of minimal nutritional value, as defined by the U.S. Department of

    Agriculture, shall not be sold or served on school premises during school

    hours. All competitive foods and beverages for sale to students during the school

    day (outside of the reimbursable school meals programs), including a la carte,

    vending, school stores, snack carts and fundraising must meet the Smart Snacks

    in School Nutrition Standards as set forth by the USDA and the Connecticut Nutrition Standards. Foods meeting these requirements will be listed on the State Department of Education’s List of Acceptable Foods and Beverages. The District will promote the sale of naturally nutrient-rich foods, such as fresh fruit, vegetables, whole grains, low-fat dairy, lean meats, legumes and seeds.

    d. Beverages of minimal nutritional value, as defined by the U.S. Department of

    Agriculture, shall not be sold or served on school premises during school

    hours. All competitive foods and beverages for sale to students during the school day (outside of the reimbursable school meals programs), including a la carte, vending, school stores, snack carts and fundraising must meet the Smart Snacks in School Nutrition Standards as set forth by the USDA and the Connecticut Nutrition Standards

    Instruction

    School Wellness Policy 6142.101

    pg. 3 of 11

    Beverages meeting these requirements will be listed on the State Department

    of Education’s List of Acceptable Foods and Beverages.

    e. During the period of thirty (30) minutes before any meal program up until thirty

    (30) minutes after the end of the program, no competitive foods or beverages

    may be sold or served. Outside of this timeframe, competitive foods may only

    be sold on school premises during school hours if they meet the Connecticut

    Nutrition Standards. All beverages sold to students on school premises during

    school hours must meet the requirements of state statute at all times.

    f. Food that is sold must meet the Health Department’s standards in regard to

    storage, preparation, and serving.

    g. Students and staff will have access to safe, fresh drinking water throughout

    the school day. Fluoridated or bottled water should be made available for

    purchase by staff and students. Any bottled water sold to students during

    school hours must meet the beverage requirements of state statute.

    h. Foods and beverages served at school celebrations during school hours or as

    classroom snacks must meet the Smart Snacks in School Nutrition

    Standards as set forth by the USDA and the Connecticut Nutrition Standards.

    i. The District will provide nutrition information for school meals via the District website.

    j. During the summer months Vernon Youth Services coordinates access to the

    Summer Food Service Program.

    2. Cafeteria Environment

    a. The District will ensure that the Food Service Director has the appropriate

    degree and certification as well as ensure training and professional

    development for the food service staff annually.

    b. The administration will work to optimize the scheduling of meals to allow

    adequate time, including travel time, for students to participate in the District’s

    nutrition programs.

    Instruction

    School Wellness Policy 6142.101

    pg. 4 of 11

    c. Any student may eat in the school cafeteria or other designated place and

    shall be provided a pleasant environment in which to eat.

    d. Access to hand washing before meals will be provided.

    e. Meal prices will be reviewed at least every two years and established by the

    Superintendent and the Food Service Supervisor, with the approval of the

    Board.

    f. Healthy option food should be competitively priced.

    g. Meal prices and menus will be conspicuously posted in each cafeteria or

    designated meal area.

    3. Guidelines for Food Served/Sold to Students After School Hours on School

    Premises

    a. School Hours are defined as the period from midnight before the beginning of the

    school day to 30 minutes after the end of the official school day.

    b. Food items that do not meet the Connecticut Nutrition Standards and

    beverages that do not meet the requirements of state statute can only be sold

    or served at the location of an event that occurs after the school day or on the

    weekend, provided the sale is not from a vending machine or the school

    store.

    c. In an effort to promote healthy nutrition for our students and their families, all

    school organizations (PTOs, Booster Clubs, etc.) sponsoring food-based

    fundraisers must offer healthy food options that meet Smart Snacks

    in School Nutrition Standards as set forth by the USDA and the Connecticut

    Nutrition Standards. All fundraisers, including Booster Club fundraisers, require administrative approval (school principal or his/her designee).

    Instruction

    School Wellness Policy 6142.101

    pg. 5 of 11

    C. Staff Development

    1. Workshops

    Ongoing in-service and professional development training opportunities for staff

    in the area of food and nutrition will be encouraged and provided as necessary

    and appropriate. These educational opportunities may include, but not be limited

    to, the distribution of educational and informational materials and the

    arrangement of presentations and workshops that focus on nutritional value and

    healthy lifestyles, health assessments, and other appropriate nutrition-related

    topics.

    2. Incentives

    School staff shall encourage non-food alternatives, such as additional physical

    activity, as student rewards, including fundraising incentives. Alternative rewards

    should be developed and promoted. However, should the staff feel compelled to

    use food items as an incentive, they are required to adhere to the Smart Snacks in

    School Nutrition Standards as set forth by the USDA and the Connecticut Nutrition

    Standards.

    D. Family and Community Involvement

    In order to promote family and community involvement in supporting and reinforcing

    nutrition education in the schools, the school administration is responsible for

    ensuring that:

    1. Nutrition education and meal menus are made available to the parents.

    2. Parents are encouraged to promote their child's participation in the school meal

    program. If their children do not participate in the school meal program, parents

    should provide their children with healthy snacks/meals.

    3. School staff is encouraged to cooperate with other agencies and community

    groups to provide opportunities for student projects related to nutrition, as

    appropriate.

    4. School staff considers the various cultural preferences in development of

    nutrition education programs and food options.

    Instruction

    School Wellness Policy 6142.101

    pg. 6 of 11

    Physical Activity Standards

    The Board believes every student should develop the knowledge and skills necessary to

    perform a variety of physical activities, maintain physical fitness, understand the short

    and long term benefits of physical activity, and value physical activity as an ongoing part

    of a healthy lifestyle. In addition, the staff is encouraged to participate in and model

    physical activity as a valuable part of daily life.

    A. Education

    The Vernon School System shall provide physical activity and physical education

    opportunities aligned with the Connecticut Healthy and Balanced Living Curriculum

    Framework that provides students with the knowledge and skills to lead a physically

    active lifestyle. The physical education program shall provide adequate space and

    equipment as well as conform to all applicable safety standards.

    1. Physical education classes and physical activity opportunities will be available for

    all students. All physical education classes include at least 70% of moderate to

    vigorous activity.

    a. At the elementary level, physical education classes will meet for a minimum of forty

    minutes per class period.

    b. At the middle school level, physical education classes will meet two times per

    week for a minimum of 100 minutes per week.

    c. At the high school level, physical education classes will meet a minimum of two

    times per week per semester for a minimum of 160 minutes per week.

    Instruction

    School Wellness Policy 6142.101

    pg. 7 of 11

    2. As recommended by the Society of Health and Physical Educators (SHAPE)

    school leaders of physical activity and physical education shall guide students through a process that will enable them to achieve and maintain a high level of personal fitness through the following:

    a. Expose students to a wide variety of physical activities

    b. Teach physical skills to help maintain a lifetime of health and fitness

    c. Encourage self-monitoring so students can see how active they are and set

    their own goals

    d. Individualize the intensity of activities

    e. Focus feedback on development of fitness and athletic skills.

    f. Be active role models

    3. Physical Education classes shall be based on a curriculum aligned to state

    physical education standards.

    a. The student-teacher ratio for physical education classes will comply with

    the Vernon Board of Education Class Size Policy.

    b. Physical Education teachers will prepare confidential individual fitness

    assessments for students based on Connecticut’s Fitness Standards.

    These assessments will be made available to parents upon request.

    c. There will be no substitution of Physical Education classes for other

    physical activities.

    4. Intramural activities may be offered at the elementary schools. Intramural and

    Interscholastic activities will be offered at the Middle School and High School. All

    activities are contingent on staff/student interest and budget constraints.

    Instruction

    Student Wellness Policy 6142.101

    pg. 8 of 11

    5. Recess provides opportunities for physical activity, which helps students,

    stay alert and attentive in class and provides other educational and social

    benefits. School authorities shall develop schedules that provide

    time for supervised recess in every elementary school. Daily recess shall

    provide opportunities for physical activity.

    6. Classrooms shall may incorporate, short breaks that include physical movement.

    7. The school district promotes programs such as walking and biking to school.

    B. Staff Development

    1. Workshops

    The Physical Education staff will receive professional development on a yearly

    basis. These educational opportunities will include, but not be limited to, the

    distribution of educational and informational materials and the arrangement of

    presentations, and workshops that focus on healthy lifestyles, fitness activities,

    and other appropriate physical activity related topics.

    The school district will promote periodic and ongoing programs to increase

    nutritional knowledge and physical activity for all faculty and staff.

    2. Discipline

    a. Staff members shall not deny a student's participation in recess or other

    physical activity as a form of discipline, unless the safety of students is in

    question. Each student is entitled to some portion of recess.

    b. The teaching and physical education staff members shall not order

    performance of physical activity as a form of discipline.

    Instruction

    Student Wellness Policy 6142.101

    pg. 9 of 11

    C. Family and Community Involvement

    In order to promote family and community involvement in supporting and reinforcing

    physical education and activities in the schools, the school administration is

    responsible for ensuring:

    1. Physical education curriculums are available online.

    2. Parents are encouraged to promote their child's participation in the school's

    physical education programs and after school activities.

    3. School staff considers the various cultural preferences in development of

    physical education programs.

    4. School staff is encouraged to cooperate with community groups to provide

    opportunities for students to participate in physical activity programs.

    5. Access to school sites will be provided through permitting use of facilities to

    community youth sports groups consistent with the District's facilities use policy

    so additional opportunities are available for youth to participate in quality physical

    activity, fitness, sports and recreation programs.

    Evaluation

    At the District level, the Board designates the School Wellness Council with the

    responsibility of ensuring that each school meets the requirements of the District

    Wellness Policy. At the School level, the principal of each school shall be responsible

    for the implementation and evaluation of the effectiveness of this wellness policy.

    A. School Wellness Council Responsibilities

    The District’s School Wellness Council will meet monthly during the school year to

    assist in the ongoing development, evaluation, and implementation of the District-

    wide Student Wellness Policy. The council membership includes, but is not limited

    to, the District Food Service Manager, the Physical Education and Health Program

    administrator, a district administrative representative, a school board member, a

    building level administrator, a school nurse, a teacher, a staff representative from each school building, a local community partner preferably a representative from the town’s

    Parks and Recreation Department, a parent, a student, and a health care professional. The members of this council serve at the discretion of the Board of Education.

    Instruction

    School Wellness Policy 6142.101

    pg. 10 of 11

    It is the responsibility of this School Wellness Council to:

    1. Monitor the implementation of the District's Student Wellness Policy and its

    nutrition and physical activity components.

    2. Work toward the development and implementation of a Coordinated School

    Health Model.

    3. Evaluate policy progress, serving as a resource to school sites.

    4. Recommend revisions of the policy through the Superintendent or designee, as

    needed.

    5. Promote programs on physical activity, nutrition, and wellness-related topics.

    6. Explore potential funding opportunities at the federal, state and local level to

    support program initiatives.

    7. Prepare an annual report for the Board of Education.

    B. School Level/Principal Responsibilities

    In order to evaluate the effectiveness of the school wellness program in promoting

    healthy eating and physical activity and implement program changes as necessary

    to increase the program's effectiveness, each school principal with the support of

    the Food Service Director, is responsible for ensuring that this Board policy and the

    administrative regulations are implemented as written. Further responsibilities shall

    include:

    1. Nutrition Evaluation

    a. Assessing all building, grade-level Health Education curricula and materials

    for accuracy, completeness, balance and consistency with state and local

    district educational goals and standards.

    b. Providing Health Education throughout the student's school years as part of

    the District's age-appropriate health program.

    c. Assessing periodically the school meal program with input from students,

    parents, and staff.

    Instruction

    Student Wellness Policy 6142.101

    pg. 11 of 11

    2. Physical Activity Evaluation

    a. Assessing all building, grade-level Physical Education curricula and materials

    for accuracy, completeness, balance and consistency with state and local

    district educational goals and standards.

    b. Providing Physical Education throughout the student's school years as part of

    the District’s age-appropriate physical education program.

    c. Monitoring and assessing regularly the district's physical activity and fitness

    programs in conjunction with other district academic and health related

    programs using the Connecticut Physical Fitness Assessment Test. Results

    of this test will be reported to the Board, school sites, and made available to

    parents and the community on an annual basis.

    (cf. 3542 — Food Service)

    Legal References:

    Connecticut General Statutes

    10-16b Prescribed courses of study.

    10-215 Lunches, breakfasts and the feeding programs for public school children and employees.

    10-221 Boards of education to prescribe rules, policies and procedures.

    10-215a Non-public school participation in feeding program.

    10-215b Duties of state board of education re feeding programs.

    10-216 Payment of expenses.

    10-221o Lunch Periods. Recess.

    Public Law 108-265, The Child Nutrition and WIC Reauthorization Act of 2004

    Policy Revised: June 22, 2015

    Policy Reviewed: December 12, 2011

    Policy adopted: May 22, 2006

    Policy Revised: May 24, 2010


    6144.1 Exemption From Instruction (Policy Revised 2-13-2012)

    Instruction

    Exemption From Instruction 6144.1

    Substance abuse education is required annually by state statutes for all students, and students are not exempt.

    Religious

    If religious belief and/or teachings of a student or his/her parents or guardian are contrary to the content of a school subject or any part of a school activity, the student may be exempt from participation. For an exemption, the parent or guardian must present to the principal a written request for exemption stating the conflict involved.

    Medical

    If a student is unable to participate in a physical education class, he/she must present to the principal or designee a statement from a physician stating the reason for his/her inability to participate.

    AIDS Instruction

    Currently there is no cure for those infected with Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS), but the Board of Education believes that education is the best way to prevent the spread of AIDS. By learning the facts about AIDS, students will be able to make decisions that will keep them healthy and perhaps save their lives.

    A student will be exempted from instruction on AIDS upon receipt of a written request for exemption from his/her parent or guardian.

    Dissection of Animals

    A student will be exempted from dissection of animals upon receipt of a written request for exemption from his/her parent or guardian.

    Exemptions from required instruction do not excuse a student from the total semester hours required for graduation.

    Legal Reference:

    Connecticut General Statutes

    10-16b Prescribed courses of study

    10-19b AIDS Education

    10-19 Effect of Alcohol, Nicotine or Tobacco and Drugs to be taught

    10-16e Students are not required to participate in the Family Life Education Program

    Revised: February 13, 2012

    Revised: December 10, 2001


    6145 Student Organizations/Council and Equal Access (Policy Revised 2-27-2012)

    Instruction

    Student Organizations/Council and Equal Access 6145


    Pg. 1 of 3

    The Board of Education believes that student organizations reinforce the instructional program, give students practice in democratic self-government and provide social and recreational activities. Student organizations also enhance school spirit and student’s sense of belonging.

    The Superintendent or his/her designee shall establish criteria and a process for school sponsorship of student clubs.

    The Equal Access Act requires that public secondary schools grant access to student groups who wish to meet for religious, political, or philosophical purposes, if the school allows other types of non-curriculum related groups to meet.

    Closed Forum Organizations:

    The Board of Education recognizes “closed forum” organizations for the district’s high school and defines them as student initiated groups that directly relate to the curriculum and are sponsored by the school district. Membership in all student organizations is open to all students of the school, unless the organization is Student Council where its members are democratically elected. Such organizations will operate within the framework of state and federal law, statutes, Board policy, administrative rules, and the parameters of the learning program.

    1) Each principal will develop general guidelines for the establishment and operation of student organizations within the school.

    2) The formation of any student organization that may engage in activities of an apparently controversial nature that may, in the opinion of the principal, interfere with the legitimate educational concerns of the school will require approval by the Board.

    3) Fraternities, sororities and/or secret societies will not receive recognition in any manner.

    4) The principal is authorized to deny all requests for forming an organization where the requirements of Board policy are not met. When the principal denies the request the students will be informed of the reasons for denial. The students may submit a written request to the Superintendent or designee within ten (10) days of the denial for a review of the principal’s decision. The decision of the Superintendent or designee after review of the denial will be final.

    5) The general guidelines for the establishment and operation of student organizations will include the approval of the principal prior to the formation of any club or organization, the assignment of at least one faculty advisor to each student organization, and compliance with the provisions of the Board.

    Instruction

    Student Organizations/Council and Equal Access 6145

    Pg. 2 of 3

    6) A Faculty advisor must attend every meeting of the student organization, whether conducted on school premises or at another location.

    Student Council

    Student Council is a closed forum organization designed to provide the opportunity for experiences in the democratic process. Student Council shall be of the students, by the students, in communication with the administration. The student council shall assist in improving the general welfare of all students and shall offer students opportunities to participate in the democratic process. Student Council members shall be elected democratically and their rights and responsibilities clearly set forth. Principals will appoint faculty advisors. Student councils shall not have authority to make policies for the district or regulations for the school, nor shall they have any disciplinary authority, except for recommending removal from the council of one of their members. However, a council may make recommendations to the administration on any topic of student concern. The administration and Student Council shall keep channels of communication open, not only between themselves, but between all students, the council, and the Board of Education.

    Open Forum Organizations:

    The Board of Education recognizes “Open Forum” organizations for the district’s high school and defines them as student initiated groups that do not relate directly to the curriculum and are not sponsored by the school district. Membership in these organizations is open to all students in the school.

    1) Open Forum meetings will take place during a lunch hour or during non-

    instructional time.

    2) The meetings must be student initiated, voluntary, and only for students enrolled in the school. The principal must be assured that students are promoting such activities and that they are participating of their own volition.

    3) Principals may assign personnel to supervise these meetings to ensure order and discipline. This action does not constitute sponsorship by the district.

    4) The presence of school authorities or district employees or personnel at any

    religious meeting is non-participatory in nature. The presence of school authorities

    is for the purpose of observation only.

    5) The meetings must not in any way interfere with the conduct of regular instructional

    activities of the schools. Since education of the students is the prime responsibility

    of the school, any other activities are secondary. The school may deny facilities to

    students on the basis that such activities or meetings interfere with the instructional

    program.

    Instruction

    Student Organizations/Council and Equal Access 6145

    Pg. 3 of 3

    6) Student meetings are not controlled, conducted or directed by persons or groups

    not affiliated with the schools. Such persons may attend student meetings but not

    on a regular basis. Visitors to the school must be approved by the principal, and

    clearance must be obtained prior to the meeting.

    All student groups shall have equal access to the school media, including the public address system, the school newspaper, the school bulletin board and the school website to announce meetings.

    No school shall discriminate against, deny equal access or deny a fair opportunity to meet to any group officially affiliated with the Boy Scouts of America, or any other youth group listed as a patriotic society in Title 36 of the United States Code, for reasons based on the membership criteria or oath of allegiance to God and country.

    Legal References:

    Equal Access Act, 20 U.S.C. 4071 et.seq.

    No Child Left Behind Act, 20 U.S.C. 7905

    Westside Community Board of Education v. Mergens

    Revised: February 27, 2012


    6145.1 Extracurricular Activities Supported by School System (Policy Reviewed 12-12-2011)

    Instruction

    Extracurricular Activities Supported by School System 6145.1


    The school district shall provide, within budgetary limitations, opportunities for student participation in extra class activities, including interscholastic and intramural athletics, clubs, music and drama organizations, and other student programs.

    Participation in such programs and activities is a privilege and not a right. Any student whose behavior during these programs and/or activities is unacceptable may be restricted by school district administrators from participation for up to a maximum of one school year. Depending upon the particular circumstances in each instance, restriction may involve student exclusion only from a certain activity or activities for a specified period of time; or exclusion from school-sponsored social functions, sports activities, dramatic or music programs, or other activities, in the evenings or on weekends; or some other degree of appropriate restriction.

    To ensure student constitutional rights and due process protections, a designated school administrator shall conduct a hearing to allow students to contest charges which can lead to suspension of student activity privileges. These hearings shall be in addition to the informal administrative hearings required prior to a possible earlier suspension from school for the same behavior or actions, and shall follow procedural guidelines set forth in 1-5 below:

    1. Written notice of charges shall be supplied to the student and his/her parents/guardians.

    2. The hearing officer shall ascertain the facts, and if the facts indicate the student=s guilt, shall further determine the designated punishment, if any, including suspension from interscholastic, extra-curricular and/or co-curricular activities.

    3. Parents/guardians shall be requested to be present at the hearing.

    4. A record shall be kept of the hearing.

    5. Administrative decisions from the hearing on student suspension from school activities, including the duration of the imposed suspension if awarded, shall be reduced to writing and reviewed with the Superintendent of Schools. Following such review, written decisions reflecting any changes from such review with the Superintendent, shall be sent to the student and his/her parents/guardians.

    Legal Reference:

    Connecticut General Statutes

    10-220 Duties of boards of education.

    10-221 Boards of education to prescribe rules.

    10-233e Notice as to disciplinary policies and action.

    Revised: 12/10/01

    Reviewed: 12/12/11


    6145.2 Interscholastic/Intramural Athletics (Policy Revised 2-13-2012)

    Instruction

    Interscholastic/Intramural Athletics 6145.2


    Page 1 of 2

    The purpose of school athletics is both educational and recreational. The athletic program should encourage participation by as many students as possible and should be carried on with the best interests of the participants as the primary consideration. Participation should be without unreasonable interference with other obligations in the school, community, and home.

    It is recognized that a well organized and well conducted athletic program is a potent factor in the morale of a student body and an important phase of good community-school relations.

    Every possible effort shall be made to offer equal opportunity for both sexes in sports and activities which shall include life sports that a student can carry through adulthood.

    District participation in interscholastic athletics will be subject to approval by the Board. This shall include approval of membership in any leagues, associations, or conferences, and of rules for student participation.

    Within budgetary limitations, there shall be interscholastic athletic programs at the high and middle school levels which shall be conducted in accordance with Connecticut Interscholastic Athletic Conference (CIAC) rules and regulations.

    Appropriately certified and qualified personnel shall be selected for coaching and supervisory positions. Voluntary student participation requires:

    1. parent permission;

    2. medical clearance to participate;

    3. appropriate student behavior and conduct;

    4. student eligibility under CIAC regulations;

    Good sportsmanship and good mental and physical health shall be the primary aims of extra-curricular athletic programs.

    Interscholastic athletic activities shall not be scheduled on Sunday unless necessary to comply with CIAC scheduling exigencies.

    Instruction

    Interscholastic/Intramural Athletics 6145.2

    Page 2 of 2

    The Board of Education supports an active intramural athletic program at the elementary, middle, and high school levels.

    Legal Reference:

    Connecticut General Statutes

    10-149 Qualifications for coaches of intramural and interscholastic athletics

    Stratton, P.P.A., v. St. Joseph’s High School, Bridgeport, Superior Court, June 4, 1986 (12 CTL 26) 9/87

    Revised: February 13, 2012

    Revised: December 10, 2001

    6145.3 Student Publications (Policy Revised 2-27-2012)

    Instruction

    Student Publications 6145.3


    Pg. 1 of 3

    Student Publications

    Student publications are important elements of the instructional program and contribute directly to the accomplishment of the school’s goals. The Board of Education encourages the development of school student publications such as newspapers, annuals, and magazines because they offer an educational activity through which students gain experience in reporting, writing, editing, and understanding responsible journalism. Such publications also provide an opportunity for students to express their views and a means of communicating both within and beyond the school community.

    All student publications will comply with the rules of responsible journalism. Libelous statements, unfounded charges and accusations, obscenity, false statements, materials advocating racial and religious prejudice, hatred, violence, the breaking of laws and school policies and/or regulations, or materials designed to disrupt the educational process will not be permitted. Expressions of personal opinion must be clearly identified as such, and bear the name of the author. Opportunity for the expression of opinions differing from those of the student publishers must be provided.

    In addition, student newspapers and/or publications which are paid for by the District and/or produced under the direction of a teacher as part of the school curriculum are not considered a public forum. In such cases, the Board reserves the right to edit or delete such student speech which is determined to be inconsistent with the District’s basic educational mission.

    Student Newspapers

    Student newspapers in whole or in part are produced through the authorized use of Board of Education resources and are recognized as official school newspapers. Such school newspapers are an extension of the curriculum and are intended to promote student writing and journalism; provide a forum for information generated by, and opinions of, students; and serve as a medium to report school activities. Every school wishing to publish a school newspaper must identify a faculty member from that school who would be willing to act as an advisor.

    Instruction

    Student Publications 6145.3

    Pg. 2 of 3

    Rights of Student Journalists

    1) To print factual articles dealing with topics of interest to the student writers;

    2) To print on the editorial page, with the exception of materials not permitted in official school publications, opinions on any topic, whether school related or not, which students feel is of interest to themselves or to their readers.

    Responsibilities of Student Journalists

    1) To submit copy that conforms to good journalistic writing style;

    2) To rewrite stories, as required by the school newspaper advisor, to improve journalistic structure, sentence structure, grammar, spelling and punctuation;

    3) To check facts and verify quotes;

    4) To provide space for rebuttals to editorials on controversial issues, in the same issue if possible, but otherwise no later than the following issue;

    5) To determine the contents of official school newspapers, subject to the specific limitations of this policy.

    Materials Not Permitted in School Newspapers

    1) Material which is libelous or which violates the rights of privacy;

    2) Profanity, hereby defined as language which would not be used in The Hartford Courant or The New York Times;

    3) Material which demeans or discriminates against an individual or group of individuals based upon, but not limited to, race, religion, gender, gender identity or expression, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, age, physical or learning disability, veteran status, genetic information, marital status, ancestry, pregnancy;

    4) Ads for cigarettes, liquor or any other product not conducive to good health;

    5) Any material which would cause substantial disruption to the school. Substantial disruption is hereby defined as the threat of physical violence in the school or nearby community and/or the disruption of the school’s educational program;

    Instruction

    Student Publications 6145.3

    Pg. 3 of 3

    6) Endorsements of political candidates or ballot measures, whether such endorsements are made via editorials, articles, letters, photographs, or

    graphics. The newspaper may, however, publish “fact sheet” types of

    articles on candidates and ballot measures, provided such articles do no

    endorse any person or position, and provided equal space is provided for

    all candidates for a particular office or to both sides of the ballot measure.

    Determination of Appropriateness

    The newspaper advisor shall review each article prior to publication to determine if it satisfies conditions of this policy. The school principal or designee may also review copy prior to publication. Such copy, however, must be returned to the student editors within 72 hours after it is submitted for review. No copy may be censored except for reasons specifically listed herein. Nothing in this policy is intended to allow censoring of any article merely because it is controversial or because it criticizes a particular school, a school procedure, or the school system itself.

    Resolution of Differences for Printed/Published Materials

    In the event of disagreement as to whether an article should be printed, each school shall have a publications board which shall meet within forty-eight (48) hours to submit its opinion. The publications board shall board consist of: the principal or designee; the journalism advisor; the editor-in-chief; representatives from student council; the PTO or Parent Advisory Council; and other members as mutually agreed upon.

    If the publications board cannot solve the dispute, then an appeal shall be made to the Superintendent who shall seek advice from the board’s legal counsel in making a decision. The Superintendent shall act on the appeal within forty-eight (48) hours. There will be no appeal from the Superintendent’s decision.

    Legal References:

    Eisner v Stamford Board of Education, 440 F.2d 803 (2nd Cir.1971)

    Trachtman v Anker, 563 F. 2d 512 (2nd Cir. 1977) cert. denied, 435 U.S. 925 (1978)

    Hazelwood School District v Ruhlmeir, 484 U.S. 260, 108 S Ct 562 (1988)

    Bethel School District v Fraser, 478 U.S. 675 (1986)

    Tinker v Des Moines Independent Community District, 393 U.S. 503 (1969)

    Revised: February 27, 2012

    6145.8 School Activity Funds (Policy Revised 2-13-2012)

    Instruction

    School Activity Funds 6145.8


    School Activity Funds may be expended only for purposes which may benefit the student body of the school. All rules, regulations, and procedures for the conduct, operation and maintenance of extra-curricular accounts, and for the safeguarding, accounting and auditing of all monies received and derived from those accounts are to contribute to that objective.

    The accounting system for managing Student Activity Funds shall be designed to encourage the largest possible return to students without sacrificing the safety of funds or exposing students to undue responsibility or unnecessary routine.

    See Policy 3453 in section 3000 (Business and Non-Instructional Operations).

    Legal References:

    10-222a Boards to have use of Funds from repayment and insurance proceeds for school

    materials

    10-237 School Activity Funds

    Revised: February 13, 2012

    6146 Graduation Requirements (Policy Revised 4-17-2017)

    Instruction

    Graduation Requirements 6146


    Page 1 of 2

    Graduation from Rockville High School implies that students have satisfactorily completed the prescribed courses of study and have satisfactorily demonstrated the district’s performance standards established by the faculty and approved by the Board of Education.

    Students are required to complete and pass, at a minimum, the following courses to be eligible for graduation from Rockville High School:

    SubjectCredits

    English4.0

    Mathematics4.0

    Social Studies

    Civics0.5

    United States History1.0

    Elective1.5

    Science

    Biological Science1.0

    Physical Science1.0

    Elective1.0

    World Language2.0

    Vocational Education1.0

    Fine Arts1.0

    Microsoft Applications1.0

    Physical Education1.5

    Health0.75

    Junior Seminar(P/F)

    Senior Seminar(P/F)

    Community Service40 Hours

    Electives3.75

    TOTAL25.0 credits

    Instruction

    Graduation Requirements6146

    Page 2 of 2

    Community Service Graduation Requirement

    Community service is a way for our student body to give back to their community. As part of their civic expectation at Rockville High School, students will be required to donate their time to the service of others. This service must not be financially compensated in any way. Students may work with a specific non-profit organization or they may volunteer individually. Students may complete community service hours through any school organization, (i.e. service club) if the appropriate club advisor verifies and documents the hours of service. Students already involved with community service for another requirement such as religious confirmation may count those hours as part of his/her graduation requirement.

    The graduating classes of 2018, 2019, and 2020 must complete forty (40) hours of Community Service. Beginning with the class of 2021, students must complete fifty (50) hours of Community Service. Community Service hours for students who transfer to Rockville High School after their ninth grade year will be prorated.

    No Student will graduate without satisfactory completion of this requirement.

    (cf. 5121 – Examination/Grading/Rating)

    (cf. 6111 – School Calendar)

    (cf. 6146.2 – Statewide Proficiency/Mastery Examinations)

    (cf. 6172.6 – Virtual/On-line Courses)

    Legal Reference: Connecticut General Statutes

    Policy Revised: April 17, 2017

    June 9, 2014

    April 8, 2013

    6146.1 Grading System (Policy Revised 5-14-2012)

    Instruction

    Grading System 6146.1


    The primary purpose of grading shall be to keep parents and students fully informed of student progress and to provide continuous and accurate records of each student’s achievement for use in instruction.

    It is the philosophy of this district that students respond more positively to the opportunity for success than to the threat of failure. The district seeks, therefore, through learner objectives and its instructional program, to make achievement both recognizable and possible for students. Achievement will be emphasized in the process of evaluating student performance.

    Evaluation of student progress is a primary responsibility of the teacher. The highest possible level of student achievement is a common goal of both school and home. A close working relationship between home and school is essential to the accomplishment of this goal. Regular communication with parents or guardians, utilizing a variety of means, about the scholastic progress of their student is a basic component of this working relationship. It is the responsibility of the school and individual staff members to keep parents or guardians well informed.

    Report cards, combined with scheduled parent-teacher conferences, and other communication vehicles helps promote a process of continuous evaluation of student performance.

    The Board of Education shall approve the grading and reporting systems as developed by the administration and faculty and upon the recommendation of the Superintendent of Schools.

    Weighted Grades

    A grade weighting/class ranking system shall be implemented for the high school in accordance with the guidelines set forth and published annually in the high school parent/student handbook.

    (cf. 5124 - Reporting to Parents)

    Legal Reference: Connecticut General Statutes

    10-220g Policy on weighted grading for honors and advanced placement class

    REVISED: May 14, 2012


    6146.2 Statewide Proficiency/Mastery Examinations (Policy Revised 2-27-2012)

    Instruction

    Statewide Proficiency/Mastery Examinations 6146.2


    pg. 1 of 2

    Each student enrolled in grades three through eight inclusive and grade ten shall take a statewide mastery examination (measuring whether or not a student has mastered essential grade level skills in reading, language arts, mathematics, and science in grades five, eight and ten). The mastery examination shall be provided by and administered under the supervision of the State Board of Education.

    Student scores on each component of the statewide tenth grade mastery test (CAPT)

    shall be included on the permanent record and transcripts of students. Students who meet or exceed the statewide mastery goal on any component of the statewide tenth grade mastery examination, shall have a certification of such mastery made on the permanent record and transcript and be provided a certificate of mastery for each such component. A student who has not met the mastery goal level on each component of the mastery examination may annually take or retake each such component at its regular administration until the student scores at or above each goal level or until the student graduates or turns twenty-one (21).

    The school district may not require achievement of a satisfactory score on the statewide proficiency examination or statewide mastery examination, or any subsequent re-test on a component of such examinations as the sole criterion of promotion or graduation.

    Special education students shall participate in mastery testing except in the rare case when their Planning and Placement Team determines that participation would be inappropriate and recommends the use of an alternative assessment as specified by the State Board of Education.

    Limited English Proficient (LEP) students, including those also identified as requiring special education, who are in their first year of enrollment in a U.S. school and have been in attendance for one school year or less may be permitted to be exempt from one administration of the reading/language arts portion of the Connecticut Mastery Test (CMT) and the Connecticut Academic Progress Test (CAPT). These students must take the Language Assessment Scales (LAS-Links). No such exemption is permitted, based on federal guidelines, from the mathematics and science assessments of the CMT and CAPT. Accommodations, as provided in classroom instruction, may be used.

    Limited English Proficient students eligible for special education due to significant cognitive impairment must be tested on the CMT/CAPT Skills Checklist, regardless of the one school year exemption option.

    Any alternate assessment, including CMT/CAPT Skills Checklist, of students enrolled in

    Instruction

    Statewide Proficiency/Mastery Examinations (continued) 6146.2

    Pg. 2 of 2

    special education, shall be available only to those students with significant cognitive disabilities. In compliance with federal law, out-of-level testing is not an option for students enrolled in special education.

    In compliance with federal legislation, a participation standard of 95 percent of the total school population, as well as for each subgroup (e.g, race/ethnicity, gender, special education. bilingual/ESL, eligibility for free and reduced lunch), will be the participation goal.

    (cf. 5125 - Student Records; Confidentiality)

    (cf. 5121 - Examination/Grading/Rating)

    (cf. 6146 - Graduation Requirements)

    (cf. 6162.31 - Test Exclusion)

    Legal Reference:

    Connecticut General Statutes

    10-14n Statewide mastery examination. Conditions for reexamination. Limitation on use of test results. (as amended by PA 03-174 and PA 03-168)

    10-14o Compensatory education grant. Financial statement of expenditures.

    10-14p Reports by local and regional boards re instructional improvement and student progress.

    10-14q Exceptions (as amended by PA 01-205)

    PL 107-110 – Title I, 34 CFR Part 2000

    34 CFR Part 200 Regulations appearing in Federal Register, 9/13/06

    Revised: February 27, 2012

    September 22, 2003

    6152 Grouping (Policy Revised 6-24-2019)

    Instruction

    Grouping 6152


    The placement of students in instructional groups, classrooms, and programs of study, has a significant impact on their educational and social development. No one grouping or placement practice is best for all students under all circumstances, but some general principles are common to all proper grouping and placement decisions. It is the policy of the Board that grouping and placement decisions be based on educational considerations and that their primary goal is to promote the best educational interests of the students.

    The Board does not endorse any particular method of grouping students. However, in making grouping and placement decisions within individual schools, staff members must give due regard to the following general principles:

    • Students can learn much from students whose skills and interests are

    different from their own in heterogeneous groups;

    • Different students have different skills and interests;

    • Students develop at different rates in different areas of learning; and

    • Students learn from other students as well as from adults.

    Grouping and placement decisions should also reflect the fact that changes in a student’s educational development may require changes in his or her placement. Consequently, grouping and placement decisions should be flexible, and they should be reviewed regularly to assess their appropriateness.

    Students may select their courses of study and classes when they are available. However, students shall be advised of courses 1) required for graduation, 2) necessary to earn credit at the college level and 3) recommended to meet their career choices.

    Secondary students may be grouped to meet individual needs in certain subjects, such as English or mathematics. Principals shall avoid scheduling or grouping arrangements that “lock” a student into a particular grouping or track for the entire school day.

    The placement of a student in an instructional grouping or level or a subject shall be discussed with the parent and be cooperatively decided by the student, parent/guardian, guidance counselor and administrator. A student’s assignment to a group or level shall not be considered permanent.

    Revised: June 24, 2019

    Revised: February 27, 2012

    December 10, 2001


    6153 Field Trips (Policy Revised 6-24-2019)

    Instruction

    Field Trips 6153


    Field trips are valuable educational activities which enhance classroom learning.

    To the extent the budgetary resources permit, the Board encourages and promotes student trips or other out-of-district activities, including participation in interscholastic events, community civic projects and international travel which are of value in helping achieve each participating student’s educational objectives.

    Guidelines for planning of field trips which are part of and directly related to classroom learning activities shall be:

    1. Field trips during the day must be approved by the building principal.

    2. Field trips which involve overnight accommodations for students must

    be approved by the Superintendent of schools. Any such approval shall

    be reported to the Board in advance of such trips.

    3. All trips should be within budgetary allotments for such purpose. Any

    trips for which there is no budgetary appropriation must have advance

    approval of the Board.

    4. All students must have parental/guardian permission for all field trips.

    5. Students may be asked to pay all or part of the expenses of field trips.

    6. Bus transportation shall be used when practicable, but private vehicles

    may be used when appropriate within guidelines developed by the

    Superintendent or designee.

    7. Parents or other adults may serve as chaperones.

    8. Each trip should be evaluated after completed by students, teachers,

    and the administration.

    9. No student shall be excluded from a field trip because of inability to

    pay.

    10. Superintendent and Principal approval of all field trips shall be conditional. Approval for any field trip may be revoked at any time by the Superintendent or Principal if a change in circumstances, whether man-made or natural, would warrant cancellation in the interest of the safety of students and staff.

    (cf 5141.21 Administration of Medications)

    Revised: June 24, 2019

    Revised: February 13, 2012

    6154 Homework (Policy Revised 4-8-2013)

    Instruction

    Homework 6154


    pg. 1 of 4

    The responsibility of the school district to educate the student is carried out by the teachers through effective classroom instruction and the careful delegation of independent study. It is important for the student to be taught the concepts related to the subject area and how to study in school before he/she is given work to do at home. There is, therefore, a steady increase in the amount of homework expected of students from the elementary grades through the senior high school.

    Worthwhile homework benefits students. Homework should be an extension of the class lesson, be clearly understood by students, be well planned and meaningful, and be evaluated, corrected, and count for class credit.

    All homework should have a sound educational purpose to:

    1. Strengthen basic skills

    2. Extend classroom learning

    3. Stimulate and further interests

    4. Reinforce independent study skills

    5. Develop initiative, responsibility, and self-direction

    6. Stimulate worthwhile use of leisure time

    7. Acquaint parents/guardians with the work.

    Guidelines for teachers:

    Teachers will:

    1. Explain the purpose of any given assignment

    2. Give clear directions on the method and means of accomplishing the assignment

    3. Ensure the availability of all necessary resources to carry out the assignment

    4. Post assignments in the classroom and on the student database in a timely manner, for grade 3 and beyond

    Instruction

    Homework 6154

    pg. 2 of 4

    5. Acknowledge receipt of homework and provide students with specific and timely feedback.

    6. Explain the method of evaluation of homework and its potential impact on the student’s grade

    7. Suggest a reasonable time allotment on a daily assignment.

    8. Give assignments as far in advance as is practical.

    9. Provide students with opportunities for choice in extended learning projects.

    10. Differentiate homework as needed.

    11. Communicate with parents/guardians.

    Guidelines for students:

    Students will:

    1. Understand the purpose and means of evaluation of an assignment, and ask for clarification when needed.

    2. Record directions, time allotment, and requirements of assignments, beginning in grade 3.

    3. Assume responsibility for completion of assignments.

    4. Self-monitor grades and progress on the student database beginning in grade 6.

    5. Consult with the teacher about work to be completed after an absence.

    6. Assume responsibility for completing make up work.

    Guidelines for Parents/Guardians:

    Parents/Guardians will:

    1. Reinforce the importance of homework in the learning process.

    2. Provide a time, place, and atmosphere conducive to the completion of homework.

    3. Monitor the student’s performance.

    4. Discuss specific problems with their student’s teacher and/or school counselor.

    5. Respond to teacher concerns regarding homework.

    Instruction

    Homework 6154

    pg. 3 of 4

    Guidelines for Administrators:

    Administrators will:

    1. Provide for homework consistency within grades, between teams, and among staff.

    2. Communicate the Homework Policy to teachers, students, and parents/guardians.

    Approximate times per night for homework completion are as follows:

    Kindergarten: up to 15 minutes per night plus - 20 minutes of family literacy experiences for grades K-5

    Grade 1: up to 15 minutes per night plus- 20 minutes of family literacy experiences for grades K-5

    Grade 2: 15 - 20 minutes per –night plus 20 minutes of family literacy experiences for grades K-5

    Grade 3: 30 minutes per night plus 20 minutes of family literacy experiences for grades K-5

    Grades 4: 40 minutes per night plus 20 minutes of family literacy experiences for grades K-5

    Grade 5: 50 Minutes of homework per night plus 20 minutes of family literacy experiences for grades K-5

    Grades 6 through 8: Up to 20 minutes of homework per night per class

    Grades 9 through 12: 30 minutes per night per class

    45 minutes per honors class

    1 hour per Advanced Placement/ECE class

    Instruction

    Homework 6154

    pg. 4 of 4

    Weighting Grades:

    Departments at the middle school and the high school will clearly define the homework expectations/practice for each course and assign a consistent percentage of weight, not to exceed 20% of the quarter grade.

    Make Up Work:

    Assignments missed during an absence shall be completed in accordance with the Attendance/Excuses dismissal Policy #5113

    Revised: April 8, 2013

    6159 Individualized Education Program/Special Education Program (Policy Revised 6-24-2019)

    Instruction

    Individualized Education Program/Special Education Program 6159


    Any child, whether a student of the school district, of preschool age, or between the ages of three and 21 years of age, inclusive, but not attending district schools, who is identified as being in need of a special program shall be referred to a "special education planning and placement team" (PPT) which shall make an evaluative study to determine whether the child is a child with a disability as defined in state and federal statutes and if special education is required and to establish the scope of the special education program.

    A parent of a child, the State Department of Education, or other state agencies available to the District may initiate a request for an initial evaluation to determine if the child has a disability. Initial evaluations using a variety of assessment tools and measures to gather relevant functional, developmental, and academic information, must be completed within 60 calendar days or 45 school days of the receipt of parental consent, or per a timeline determined by the State. Exceptions to this timeframe include children moving between school districts and parental refusal to make a child available for evaluation, as provided by law. Assessments for disabled children who are transfer students shall be coordinated between the sending or receiving district in an expeditious manner.

    Planning and Placement Team (PPT)

    The PPT shall be comprised of:

    (A) the parents of a child with a disability;

    (B) not less than one regular education teacher of such child (if the child is, or may be, participating in the regular education environment);

    (C) not less than one special education teacher, or where appropriate, not less than one special education provider of such child;

    (D) a representative of the local educational agency who

    (1) is qualified to provide, or supervise the provision of, specially designed instruction to meet the unique needs of children with disabilities;

    (2) is knowledgeable about the general education curriculum;

    (3) is knowledgeable about the availability of resources of the local educational agency;

    (4) is an individual who can interpret the instructional implications of evaluation results and may be a member of the team described in clauses (B) through (D);

    (5) is, at the discretion of the parent, another individual who has knowledge or special expertise regarding the child, including related services personnel as appropriate; and

    (6) is, whenever appropriate, the child with the disability.

    A PPT member is not required to attend all or part of a PPT meeting if the parents and District agree that the team member’s participation is not necessary because the member’s area of the curriculum or related services is not being modified or discussed at the meeting. If the meeting does involve a modification or discussion of the member’s area of the curriculum or related services, parents and the District can agree to excuse the member from attending all or part of the meeting if the member submits written input to the parent and the Team prior to the meeting. Parental consent in writing is required in either case.

    In addition to the above, the special education specialist, school psychologist, school nurse, school social worker, counselor, or other student service worker who has conducted an assessment of the student shall participate whenever the results or recommendations based on such assessment are significant to the development of the student's individualized education program and placement. When the parent/guardian and/or student have limited English language abilities or are non-English speaking, a district representative who is fluent in the student's primary language, and who is knowledgeable about the process of second-language acquisition, and competent in the assessment of limited English and non-English speaking individuals should be included.

    Parents/Guardians and the District may agree to conduct PPT meetings, and other meetings, through alternative means, such as including but not limited to, videoconferences or conference calls.

    Individualized Educational Plan (IEP)

    The IEP for each child must include:

    (A) A statement of the child’s present levels of educational performance based upon parental provider information, current classroom-based, local, state assessments and classroom-based observations, including:

    (1) the effect of the child’s disability on their involvement and progress in the general education curriculum; or

    (2) For preschool children, the effects of the child’s disability on participation in appropriate activities.

    (B) A statement of measurable annual academic and functional goals, related to

    (1) Meeting the child’s needs that result from the child’s disability to enable the child to be involved in and progress in the general education curriculum; and

    (2) Meeting each of the child’s other educational needs that result from the child’s disability.

    (3) Providing, if required, benchmarks or short-term objectives is required only with respect to students with disabilities who take alternate assessments aligned with alternate achievement standards.

    If a child will participate in alternate assessments based on either general or alternate achievement standards, the IEP must explain why the child cannot participate in the regular assessment and why the alternate assessment selected is appropriate for the child.

    The PPT may only recommend appropriate accommodation or use of alternate assessment, but may not exempt students with disabilities from the state assessment.

    (C) A statement of the special education/related services, and supplementary aids/services to be provided to the child, or on behalf of the child and a statement of the program modifications or supports for school personnel that will be provided for the child:

    (1) To advance appropriately toward attaining the annual goals;

    (2) To be involved and progress in the general curriculum and to participate in extracurricular and other nonacademic activities; and

    (3) To be educated and participate with other children with disabilities and non- disabled children in the activities described in this paragraph;

    (D) An explanation of the extent, if any, to which the child will not participate with non-disabled children in the regular class and in the activities;

    (E) A statement of any individual modifications in the administration of State or district-wide assessments of student achievement that are needed in order for the child to participate in the assessment; and

    (F) The projected date for the beginning of the services and modifications and the anticipated frequency, location, and duration of those services and modifications; and

    (G) A statement of:

    (1) How the child’s progress toward the annual goals will be measured; and

    (2) How the child’s parents will be regularly informed (through such means as periodic report cards), at least as often as parents are informed of their non- disabled children’s progress, of

    (a) Their child’s progress toward the annual goals; and

    (b) The extent to which that progress is sufficient to enable the child to achieve the goals by the end of the year

    (H) Reevaluation of a student’s progress may not occur more than once a year unless agreed to by the parents and the District. Reevaluation must occur at least once every three years unless the parent and District agree that it is unnecessary.

    Transition Services

    (A) The IEP must include:

    (1) appropriate measurable postsecondary goals based upon age appropriate transition assessments related to training, education, employment, and, where appropriate, independent living skills. This must begin not later than the first IEP to be in effect when the child is sixteen, (or younger if appropriate), and updated annually, thereafter; and

    (2) a statement of needed transition services for the student, including courses of study needed to assist the child in reaching these goals. This must begin for each student beginning not later than the first IEP to be in effect when the child is sixteen, (or younger, if determined appropriate by the IEP Team);

    (3) a summary of the student’s academic achievement and functional performance including recommendations on how to assist the student in meeting his/her postsecondary goals. This summary is for a student no longer eligible for services due to graduation from high school with a regular diploma or for a student who exceeds the age of eligibility under State law,

    (B) If the IEP team determines that services are not needed in one or more of the areas specified in §300.27(c) (1) through (c) (4), the IEP must include a statement to that effect and the basis upon which the determination was made.

    Transfer of Rights

    Beginning not later than one year before a student reaches the age of majority under State law, the student’s IEP must include a statement that the student has been informed of his or her rights under this title if any, that will transfer to the student on reaching the age of majority, consistent with §615(m)

    Special rules concerning the content of IEP’s for students with disabilities convicted as adults and incarcerated in adult prisons are contained §612(a)(5)A.

    When an individual has been on an IEP in another school district, the PPT shall make an evaluative study of the student and develop an IEP for the student as though the student were newly referred, but the PPT may use the previous IEP (if available) in developing the new one. If the transfer involves districts within Connecticut, the District will provide services “comparable to those described in the previously held IEP,” until the District adopts the previously held IEP or develops, adopts, and implements a new IEP. If the student has transferred from another state, the District will provide services “comparable to those described in the previously held IEP,” until the District conducts an evaluation, if deemed necessary, and if appropriate, develops a new IEP. If a student who is on an IEP transfers from this district to another, or to a private school, the written IEP and any additional records relating to the student's program and achievement shall be forwarded to the receiving school on the request of the receiving school and the individual's parent or guardian.

    Independent Educational Assessment

    If an independent educational assessment is necessary, it shall be conducted by a Connecticut credentialed or licensed professional examiner who is not employed by and does not routinely provide assessment for the State Department of Education or this District.

    Legal Reference: Connecticut General Statutes

    10-76a Definitions

    10-76b State supervision of special education programs and services. Regulations.

    10-76d Duties and powers of Boards of Education to provide special education programs and services.

    10-76ff Procedures for determining if a child requires special education

    10-76g State aid for special education.

    10-76h Special education hearing and review procedure.

    State Board of Education Regulations

    34 C.F.R. 300 et seq. Assistance to States for Education of Handicapped Children.

    300.14 Special education definitions.

    300.340-349 Individualized education programs.

    300.503 Independent educational assessment.

    300.533 Placement procedures.

    300.550-556 Least restrictive environment.

    P.L. 108-446 The Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act of 2004

    REVISED: June 24, 2019

    REVISED: June 25, 2012


    6161 Equipment, Books and Materials (Policy Revised 6-24-2019)

    Instruction

    Equipment, Books and Materials 6161


    The Board shall provide educational materials and equipment that support and enrich the curriculum and further the achievement of the school system’s instructional goals.

    Basic textbooks and instructional materials and equipment shall be furnished by the Board for all district schools with the following exceptions:

    individual project materials to be used in the Technology Education, Family and Consumer Sciences, and art courses;

    materials to be used for special projects not required for credit in a course;

    personal clothing items worn for physical education and other in-school athletic activities.

    Adoption on new textbooks shall require a two-thirds vote of all members of the Board with notice of the new adoption being previously given at a meeting at least one week prior to the vote. Textbooks shall be defined as the primary or basic reading for all students in a particular subject to be used during a semester or an entire school year; supplemental and reference books shall not be considered textbooks.

    Selection of Textbooks

    Textbooks will be continuously reviewed to keep up with the expansion of knowledge and rapid changes in the world and to present balanced views on international, national, and local issues and problems of the past, the present, and the future. Textbooks should:

    Stimulate growth in factual knowledge, literary appreciation, aesthetic and ethical value;

    Help students develop abilities in critical reading and thinking;

    Help develop and foster an appreciation of cultural diversity and development in the United States and throughout the world;

    Provide all students an effective basic education that does not discriminate on the basis of race, age, color, religion, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, or disabilities;

    Allow sufficient flexibility for meeting the special needs of individual students and groups of students.

    The Administration will develop and maintain a procedure for selecting materials which meet the above criteria. Such procedures shall include the opportunity for professional staff to analyze, evaluate, and recommend primary learning materials for adoption.

    According to state law, the Board will make final textbook selections.

    (cf 1220 Citizens’ Ad Hoc Advisory Committees)

    (cf 1312 Public Complaints)

    (cf 4118.21 Academic Freedom)

    (cf 5145.2 Freedom of Speech/Expression)

    Legal References: Connecticut General Statutes

    10-221 Boards of Education to prescribe rules, policies and procedures

    10-222a Boards to have use of funds derived from repayment for school materials

    10-228 Free textbooks, supplies, material and equipment

    10-229 Change of textbooks

    President's Council, District 25 v Community School Board no. 25,457

    F.2d 289 (1972), cert. denied 409 U.S.C. 998 (Nov 1972)

    Minarcini v. Strongsville City School District, 541 F.2d 577 (6th Cir. 1976)

    Island Trees Union Free School District Board of Education v. Pico, 457 US 853 (1982)

    Academic Freedom Policy (adopted by the Connecticut State Board of

    Education, 9/9/81)

    REVISED: June 24, 2019

    REVISED: May 14, 2012


    6161.1 Evaluation of Instructional Materials (Policy Revised 6-24-2019)

    Instruction

    Evaluation of Instructional Materials 6161.1


    General

    Instructional materials shall be evaluated consistently and systematically to ensure high instructional standards in compliance with Connecticut General Statutes, regulations of the State Board of Education, and Board of Education policy and regulations.

    These guidelines are not intended to supplant the professional judgement of staff who evaluate instructional materials - both student and teacher materials. Instead, they establish minimum standards for acceptability and provide criteria on which to judge instructional quality.

    To accurately portray American cultural and racial diversity as well and the gender roles in our society, instructional materials should encourage students to understand the historical roles and contributions of all genders and minorities, the forces which shaped those roles and contributions, and how and why the contemporary roles and contributions of all genders and minorities are different.

    Limitations

    It may be inappropriate to require a pictorial or textual item to conform to these guidelines; for example, in reprinting a story by a well-known author or in a painting by an artist which make an important contribution to a particular instructional material. In such situations, discussion material should have been included which explains why a particular attitude was prevalent during a certain period in history, and how and why that attitude has changed.

    When examining instructional materials for adverse reflection on race, creed, sex, etc., the evaluator should make a qualitative judgement with respect to stories or articles having historical perspective. Any description, depiction, inference, label, or retort found to be, by itself, an adverse reflection should not be judged out of context. Rather, the story or article should be examined for appropriate explanations, discussions, or other comments included or immediately attached which may overcome the impact of such offending words or pictures. The instructional material should be rejected only if, on a total basis, the story or article would, in the mind of an average student for whom the material is intended, reflect adversely upon a person because of his/her race, color, creed, national origin, ancestry, sex, or occupation.

    Legal Reference: Connecticut General Statutes

    10-18a Contents of textbooks and other general instructional materials

    Policy Revised: June 24, 2019

    Policy Revised: June 25, 2012


    6161.2 Care of Instructional Materials (Policy Revised 6-24-2019)

    Instruction

    Care of Instructional Materials 6161.2


    The Board has the responsibility to provide its students with textbooks, library books, and other educational materials at no cost. The student and/or parents or guardians have an equal responsibility to care for these textbooks, library books, and other educational materials. Library books, textbooks, and other educational materials shall be returned when requested by school authorities.

    Overdue, Damaged or Lost Instructional Materials

    In the event these materials are damaged or lost, regardless of the reason, the student and/or parents or guardians must pay for the materials at their replacement cost. Failure to do so may result in the withholding of grades, report cards, and transcripts; and/or non-participation in promotion or graduation exercises, extra-curricular activities, and interscholastic athletics.

    The Superintendent is authorized by the Board to set regulations and adopt any guidelines necessary to minimize such losses.

    Legal Reference: Connecticut General Statutes

    10-221 © Board of Education to prescribe rules

    10-228 Free textbooks, supplies, materials and equipment.

    Revised: June 24, 2019

    REVIEWED: May 14, 2012


    6161.3 Comparability of Services (Policy Revised 6-24-2019)

    Instruction

    Comparability of Services 6161.3


    The Superintendent or his/her designee shall pursue funding under Title I of the Federal Strengthening and Improving of Elementary and Secondary Schools Act to supplement instructional services and activities in order to improve the educational opportunities of educationally disadvantaged or deprived children.

    All District schools, regardless of whether they receive Title I funds, shall provide services that, taken as a whole, are substantially comparable. Teachers, administrators and other staff shall be assigned to schools in a manner that ensures equity among the District’s schools. Curriculum materials and instructional supplies shall be provided in a manner that ensures equity among the District’s schools.

    The Board believes that at all times its schools should be comparably equipped and maintained as may be possible within existing financial limitations.

    It shall be the policy of the Board to insure comparability of services funded by state and local sources in both Title I project schools and non-project schools. The Board of Education will therefore:

    Maintain a district-wide salary schedule.

    Provide services with federal, state and local funds in schools serving Title I project areas that are at least comparable to services in non-project areas.

    Use federal, state and local funds to provide comparability of services among all schools in all schools with the same grade levels in teachers, administrators, auxiliary personnel.

    Use federal, state and local funds to provide comparability of services among all schools with the same grade levels in the provision of curriculum and instructional materials, books and supplies.

    Nothing in this policy will prohibit the administration from addressing identified problems at individual schools.

    Legal Reference:

    Title I Improving Basic Programs Operated by State and Local Educational Agencies, Improving Every Student Succeeds Act, P.L. 114-95

    Agostini v. Felton 521 U.S. 103 (1997)

    20 U.S.C. Section 6321 ©

    REVISED: June 24, 2019

    REVIEWED:May 14, 2012

    ADOPTED:October 25, 2010


    6161.7 Use of Proprietary Software Products (Policy Revised 6-24-2019)

    Instruction

    Use of Proprietary Software Products 6161.7


    It is the intent of the Board of Education to adhere to the provisions of copyright law (Title 17, U. S. Code) and publishers’ license agreements, including trade secret provisions, in the area of proprietary software products. Therefore, persons may use or cause to be used on school system computing equipment ONLY software that is included in one of the following categories:

    1. public domain (i.e., uncopyrighted) software;

    2. software covered by a licensing agreement with the software author(s), vendor or developer, whichever is applicable (a licensing agreement is a legal contract authorizing use of the software);

    3. software purchased by a school or school system with a record of the purchase on file;

    4. software evaluated by the IT (Information Technology) Department regarding capacity to install;

    5. software donated and officially accepted by the Board;

    6. software being reviewed or demonstrated by the users in order to reach a decision about possible future purchase, license, or acceptance of a donation;

    7. software written or developed by an employee for use by the schools or to assist in training school district personnel

    8. software developed by a non-employee under contract to the school system for use by the school system, or to assist in training school district personnel.

    In addition, none of the software in the categories listed above may be used or obtained in violation of copyright law or licensing agreements.

    Licensing agreements or other forms of documentation covering software shall be kept on file at the location where the computer program is used, with an additional copy of the agreement on file with the office of the Director of Business and Finance.

    The Information Technology Department is responsible for all software installation.

    Policy Revised: June 24, 2019

    Policy Revised: January 27, 2014

    May 14, 2012


    6162.6 Copyrights: Limits on Printing and Duplication (Policy Revised 6-24-2019)

    Instruction

    Copyright Law Compliance 6162.6


    Duplication of copyrighted materials without permission is illegal. Duplication of copyrighted materials by employees shall be done with the permission of the copyright holder or within the bounds of “fair use”.

    The fair use of a copyrighted work for purposes of teaching, scholarship, or research is not an infringement of copyright. The following factors shall be considered in determining fair use:

    The purpose and character of the use, including whether the use is of a commercial nature or for nonprofit educational purposes.

    The nature of the copyrighted work.

    The amount and importance of the portion used in relation to the copyrighted work as a whole.

    The effect of the use upon the potential market for or value of the copyrighted work.

    The Board, therefore, requires that all reproductions of copyrighted material be conducted in accordance with applicable provisions of law. Unless otherwise allowed as “fair use”under federal law, permission must be acquired from the copyright owner prior to reproduction of material in any form. Prior written permission must be obtained whenever copyrighted plays and musical numbers are performed in public.

    The Board directs that unlawful copies of copyrighted material may not be produced or used with District owned equipment or other equipment on District property.

    Any District employee who willingly and knowingly violates the copyright policy shall be held personally liable for infringement and may be subject to disciplinary action.In no circumstances shall it be necessary for District staff to violate copyright requirements in order to perform their duties properly. Copyrighted materials shall be treated as the property of the copyright holder, with all rights and limitations specified by law.

    Legal Reference:

    Public Law 94-553, The Copyright Act of 1976, 17 U. S. C 101 et seq.

    REVISED: June 24, 2019

    REVIEWED:May 14, 2012

    6162.7 Backup Copies of Copyrighted Software (Policy Reviewed 5-14-2012)

    Instruction

    Backup Copies of Copyrighted Software 6162.7


    Schools may lawfully make one copy of a copyrighted program. The following conditions must be met:

    1. One and only one copy is made.

    2. One copy should be labeled with the name of the program, name of the publisher, copyright holder, and computer compatibility.

    3. Either the original or the copy is stored and referred to as the archival copy. The copy used is referred to as the ‘circulating’ copy.

    4. The archival copy should be stored in a limited access area with appropriate temperature and humidity controls.

    5. Only the circulating copy may be used.

    6. If the circulating copy is no longer usable, another copy may be made from the archival copy.

    REVIEWED: May 14, 2012


    6163.3 Instructional Materials for Students - Live Animals in the Classroom (Policy Revised 6-25-2012)

    Instruction

    Instructional Materials for Students – 6163.3

    Live Animals in the Classroom


    The Board of Education will adhere to the National Science Teachers Association (NSTA) position statement with regard to the use of live animals and dissection in the science classrooms.

    REVISED: June 25, 2012

    6163.32 Live Animals in the Classroom (Policy Adopted 4-27-2015)

    Instruction

    Live Animals in the Classroom6163.32


    Pg. 1 of 2

    The Board of Education recognizes that there are medical and physical risks associated with animals, both wild and domesticated, in the classroom and/or on school property. The Board acknowledges that under proper conditions, animals can be an effective teaching aid. The following guidelines are adopted regarding all animals (service animals, mammals, birds, reptiles/amphibians, fish, insects), in the classroom or on school property.

    Educational Program

    Use of animals to achieve specific curriculum objectives may be allowed by the Principal in consultation with the school nurse provided student health and safety is not jeopardized, the Department of Public Health publication “Guidelines for Animals in Schools or on School Grounds” are followed, as well as any other conditions established by the Principal to protect the health and well-being of students.

    Service Animals (including Guide or Assistance Dogs)

    The Board does not discriminate against individuals with disabilities, including those who require the assistance of a service animal. The District will comply with Connecticut and federal law concerning the rights of persons with guide or assistance animals. The Board shall permit individuals with disabilities to use service animals in District buildings, on District property, and in vehicles that are owned, leased or controlled by the School District upon request and submission of required documentation.

    Student Health

    The health and well-being of students is the District's highest priority. If any student assigned to the classroom in which an animal is permitted suffers an allergic reaction to the animal, the person having custody and control of the animal will be required to remove the animal to a different location designated by the Principal or designee and an alternative plan will be developed. If a service animal, such plan may include the reassignment of the person having custody and control of the service animal to a different classroom. This will also apply if an individual on school transportation suffers an allergic reaction. In this case, an alternate plan will be developed in coordination with appropriate District and transportation staff including the involvement of the parent/guardian of the student.

    When a student will be accompanied by a service animal at school or in other District facilities on a regular basis, the student’s parent/guardian will be required to sign a document stating that they have read and understood the foregoing.

    Instruction

    Live Animals in the Classroom6163.32

    Pg. 2 of 2

    Reference:

    Connecticut General Statutes

    10-221 Boards of education to prescribe rule, policies and procedures.

    46a-44 through 46a-64 Public accommodations and transportation, admittance to. (Access of guide and assistance dogs to modes of public transportation and in places of public accommodation)

    Section 504 and the Federal Vocational Rehabilitation Act of 1973, 20 U.S.C. 706(7)(b)

    American Disability Act of 1989, 1990

    46a-42 Mobility impaired person

    28 C.F.R. Parts 35 &36 “Nondiscrimination on the Basis of Disabilities in State and local Governments Services; Final Rules

    Adopted: April 27, 2015


    6164.11 Alcohol, Drugs, and Tobacco (Policy Revised 6-25-2012)

    Instruction

    Alcohol, Drugs, and Tobacco 6164.11

    See also: Pages 4118.231 and 5131.6


    Because use of these agents has a deleterious effect on the health and welfare of the users and far-reaching detrimental consequences to users, families, and society, efforts shall be made by staff to prevent student use of harmful drugs, tobacco and alcohol.

    The professional staff shall be provided with information and skills to acquaint them with problems of drug, tobacco, and alcohol use and in the recognition of the symptoms of such use. At least annually, and as other appropriate opportunities arise, teachers in each grade shall emphasize the effect of alcohol, nicotine, tobacco, and drugs on health, character, citizenship and personality development - in both health education programs and in other contexts.

    The Superintendent shall make use of in-service training sessions for both certified and non-certified staff to achieve the goals of this policy. Full cooperation with community agencies shall be given wherever such cooperation is advantageous to students.

    Legal Reference:

    Connecticut General Statutes

    10-19 Effect of alcohol, nicotine or tobacco and drugs to be taught.

    10-16b Prescribed courses of study.

    10-19 Effect of alcohol, nicotine or tobacco and drugs to be taught.

    10-19a Superintendent to designate substance abuse prevention team.

    10-19b Advisory councils on drug abuse prevention.

    10-220 Duties of boards of education.

    10-221(d) Boards of education to prescribe rules.

    REVISED: June 25, 2012

    6164.12 Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) (Policy Revised 6-25-2012)

    Instruction

    Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) 6164.12


    Education is the best way to prevent the spread of AIDS, and through learning the facts about AIDS, students are better able to make decisions which will keep them healthy and even save their lives. Various school district curricula, including health curricula, science curricula, and social studies curricula among others shall include information on AIDS - both its cause and prevention.

    Students will be exempt from instruction on AIDS upon written request of the parent or guardian in accordance with state statutes.

    Legal Reference:

    Connecticut General Statutes

    10-19(b) AIDS Education.

    REVISED: June 25, 2012

    6171 Special Education (Policy Revised 6-25-2012)

    Instruction

    Special Education 6171


    Page 1 of 2

    The district shall provide a free appropriate public education and necessary related services to all children with disabilities residing within the district, required under the Individuals With Disabilities Education Act (“IDEA”), Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, and the Americans With Disabilities Act.

    It is the intent of the District to ensure that students who are disabled within the definition of Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 are identified, evaluated and provided with appropriate educational services. Students may be disabled within the meaning of Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act even though they do not require services pursuant to the IDEA.

    For students eligible for services under IDEA, the District shall follow procedures for identification, evaluation, placement, and delivery of services to children with disabilities provided in state and federal statutes which govern special education. For those students who are not eligible for services under IDEA, but, because of disability as defined by Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, need or are believed to need special accommodations or related services, the District shall establish and implement a system of procedural safeguards. The safeguards shall cover students’ identification, evaluation, and educational placement. This system shall include notice, an opportunity for the student’s parent(s)/guardian(s)/surrogate parent to examine relevant records, an impartial hearing with opportunity for participation by the student’s parent(s)/guardians(s), and representation by counsel, and a review procedure.

    The Board of Education in fulfilling its legal duties and responsibilities for providing special education programs for the students of the school district, shall be assisted through membership in the Regional Service Center and through cooperative associations with other school districts.

    If necessary, students may also be placed in private school education facilities.

    (cf. 3231 - Medicaid Reimbursement for Special Education Students)

    (cf. 5145.71 - Surrogate Parent Program)

    Legal Reference: Connecticut General Statutes

    10-76a Definitions.

    10-76b State supervision of special education programs and services.

    10-76c Receipt and use of money and personal property.

    10-76d Duties and powers of boards of education to provide special education programs and services.

    10-76e School construction grant for cooperative regional special education facilities.

    10-76f Definition of terms used in formula for state aid for special Education.

    10-76g State aid for special education.

    10-76h Special education hearing and review procedure. Mediation of disputes.

    INSTRUCTION

    Special Education 6171

    Page 2 of 2 6171

    10-76i Advisory council for special education.

    10-76j Five-year plan for special education.

    10-76k Development of experimental educational programs.

    10-76m Auditing claims for special education assistance.

    10-76a-1 et seq. Definitions

    10-76d-1 through 10-76d-19 Conditions of instruction

    10-76h-1 through 10-76h-2 Due process

    10-76l-1 Program Evaluation

    10-145a-24 through 10-145a-31 Special Education (re teacher certification)

    10-2641 Grants for the operation of interdistrict magnet school programs

    34 C.F.R. 3000 Assistance to States for Education for Handicapped Children.

    American with Disabilities Education Act, 20 U.S.C. §12101 et seq.

    Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, 20 U.S.C. §1400 et seq.

    Rehabilitation Act of 1973, Section 504, 29 U.S.C. §794

    P.L. 108-446 The 2004 Reauthorization of the Individuals with Disabilities Act

    20 U.S.C. §6368 (3) The No Child Left Behind Act

    REVISED: June 25, 2012

    6172 Alternative Education Program (Policy Adopted 8-28-2017)

    Instruction

    Alternative Education Program 6172


    The Board of Education recognizes the importance of alternative program options for some district students. Recognizing that some students may become successful if given the opportunity to learn in a different environment and/or through a different learning style, it is the policy of the Board that options shall be made available for students at risk of being unable to continue or complete their education. These students may select educational alternatives that will enable them to complete their education.

    It shall be the responsibility of the Superintendent to identify alternative program opportunities to be made available to students at risk, to recommend such alternative programs to the Board for approval, and to familiarize students and parents/guardians with the availability of such alternative programs. The Superintendent shall, through cooperative efforts with other districts, schools, agencies, and organizations, periodically recommend additional or modified alternative educational programs to the Board.

    (cf 6172.6 – Virtual/Online Courses)

    Legal References: Connecticut General Statutes

    10-4p(b) Implemention plan to achieve resource equity and equality of opportunity. Assessment. Reports. (as

    amended by PA 15-133)

    10-15 Towns to maintain schools.

    10-16 Length of school year.

    10-158a Cooperative arrangements among towns. School building projects. Student transportation.

    10-220 Duties of Boards of Education (as amended by PA 15-133)

    10-223h(c) Commissioner's Network of Schools. Turnaround committees. Operations and instructional audit. Report

    (as amended by PA-15-133)

    PA 15-133 An Act Concerning Alternative Education

    Adopted: August 28, 2017


    6172.1 Gifted and Talented Students (Policy Revised 6-25-2012)

    Instruction

    Gifted and Talented Students 6172.1


    Gifted and talented students have extraordinary learning ability in academics or outstanding talent in the creative arts. Connecticut General Statute Section 10-76a(5) requires that all such students be identified.

    Identification of gifted and talented students will be based upon relevant standardized measurements and student performance.

    The school district shall provide educational opportunities for the gifted and talented including a broad spectrum of learning experiences.

    Legal reference: Connecticut General Statutes

    10-76a-(e) Definitions.

    10-76d(e) Duties and powers of Boards of Education to provide special education programs and services.

    REVISED: June 25, 2012

    6172.3 Parent Instruction of Children at Home (Policy Revised 6-25-2012)

    Instruction

    Parent Instruction of Children at Home 6172.3


    Parents wishing to educate children in the home may do so in compliance with Connecticut General Statutes and regulations of the Connecticut Board of Education. When parents or guardians are willing to discuss their decision for equivalent education at home with school personnel, school district staff shall explain the advantages of a public school education to such parents or guardians without any criticism of parental choices.

    When parents/guardians choose to educate their children at home, the school district shall provide whatever reasonable assistance it can to ensure such children benefit appropriately from home instruction.

    If parents or guardians decide to return to local schools those children who for a time have been educated at home, school staff shall facilitate an appropriate return to the public schools.

    Children educated at home are considered to be non-public school students and are not part of the system’s educational responsibility and are not part of the school system.

    Legal Reference:

    Connecticut General Statutes

    10-184 Duties of Parents.

    10-222 Duties of Boards of Education

    REVISED: June 25, 2012

    6172.4 Parent Involvement (Policy Revised 7-16-2012)

    Instruction

    Parent Involvement 6172.4


    pg. 1 of 3

    The goal of the Vernon Board of Education is to provide high quality academic programming and instructional opportunities to maximize the achievement of all students and to minimize the achievement disparities that exist among groups of students. Vernon’s Title I Program is one means by which the Vernon Board of Education ensures that all children have a fair, equal, and significant opportunity to obtain a high-quality education and reach, at a minimum, proficiency in meeting the State’s challenging academic achievement standards and state academic assessment goals. Because research overwhelmingly demonstrates the positive effect that parent involvement has on a child’s academic achievement, the Vernon Board of Education expects the participation of parents/guardians in regular, two-way, and meaningful communication regarding student academic learning and other school activities.

    To facilitate active and effective district parent involvement, the Vernon Public Schools will:

    A. Involve parents in the joint development/revision of each individual school’s School Family Compact by convening an annual meeting at a convenient time, to which all parents shall be invited and encouraged to attend

    B. Provide coordination, technical assistance and other support necessary to assist all schools in planning and implementing effective parent involvement activities to improve student academic achievement and school performance by

  • convening monthly meetings of the district’s administrative team, the district’s instructional council, and the school’s PTO presidents to strategize renewed efforts to expand parent participation and to create links between and among the parents, the schools, and the district office.
  • accessing the expertise and resources offered by the state department of education to assist the district’s schools in developing the school-level parental involvement compacts
  • supporting school level participation (parents, teachers, and administrators) in professional workshops and conferences aimed at enhancing the school-family-community partnership
  • Instruction

    Parent Involvement 6172.4

    pg. 2 of 3

    C. Build the schools’ and parents’ capacity for strong parental involvement by

  • providing materials and training to help parents understand what they can do to support their child’s motivation and readiness to learn
  • informing parents and parent organizations of the existence and purpose of the state’s Parent Information and Resource Center
  • educating teachers in how to reach out, communicate with, and work with parents as equal partners
  • ensuring, to the extent possible, that information related to school and parent programs, meetings, and other activities is sent to the parents/guardians of children in a format and in a language that parents can understand
  • coordinating with the schools to provide parents timely information about programs (i.e. Elementary Handbook); a description and explanation of the curriculum in use (i.e. Curriculum on the Wall); the academic assessment used to measure student progress; the proficient levels students are expected to meet
  • engaging the buildings’ PTOs to actively seek out and invite parents/guardians through regular communication updates and information sessions
  • publishing a master calendar of district meetings
  • D. Coordinate and integrate parental involvement strategies with other programs and initiatives, such as:

  • active participation in the monthly School Readiness Council meetings, which includes stakeholders from the Hockanum Valley Day Care Council, Head Start, the Rockville Public Library, Maple Street’s Family Resource Center, the Vernon Regional Adult Basic Education Program, Vernon Youth Services, and Vernon Town Council
  • collaboration with other organizations and agencies that serve the interests and needs of students and their families
  • E. Conduct, with the involvement of parents, an annual evaluation (survey) of the effectiveness of the School Family Compact in improving the academic quality of the schools, which includes identifying barriers to greater participation, and using the findings to design strategies for more effective involvement

    Instruction

    Parent Involvement 6172.4

    pg. 3 of 3

    F. Involve parents in the activities of the schools

  • by communicating opportunities for parental involvement (which include volunteering, sharing expertise, leadership, home support, school decision-making, parent education, professional development, etc.) and by making personal connections to recruit them
  • by providing calendar information to parents/guardians of upcoming meetings, discussions, and events and encouraging their participation
  • Legal Reference: Improving America's Schools Act, P.L. No. 103-382, Sec. 1112 Local Educational Agency Plans.

    Improving America's School Act (IASA), P.L. 103-82.

    PL 107-110, "No Child Left Behind Act of 2001," Title I - Improving the Academic Achievement of the Disadvantaged, Sec. 1118

    REVISED: July 16, 2012

    ADOPTED: January 12, 2004

    6172.6 Distance Education Virtual/Online Courses (Policy Adopted 7-16-2012)

    Instruction

    Distance Education Virtual/Online Courses 6172.6


    Page 1 of 4

    The Board of Education believes that education through virtual/online courses or through university or college courses is an effective means of instruction for students. Online courses enhance, supplement or enrich the existing curriculum and can also provide an alternative means of instruction. Interactive distance learning does not require the student to be physically present in the same location as the instructor or other students.

    Virtual/on-line courses will be part of this District’s educational program to increase accessibility and flexibility in the delivery of instruction. In addition to regular classroom-based instruction, students in the District may earn credit through distance education provided by virtual/on-line courses.

    In order to earn credits in meeting the requirements for high school graduation through the successful completion of on-line coursework, the Board, in compliance with C.G.S. 10-221a (17) shall ensure, at a minimum, that (a) the workload required by the on-line course is equivalent to that of a similar course taught in a traditional District classroom setting, (b) the content is rigorous and aligned with curriculum guidelines approved by the State Board of Education, (c) the course engages students and has interactive components, which may include, but are not limited to, required interactions between students and their teachers, participation in on-line demonstrations, discussion boards or virtual labs, (d) the program of instruction for such on-line coursework is planned, ongoing and systematic, and (e) the courses are (1) taught by teachers who are certified in the state or another state and have received training on teaching in an on-line environment, or (2) offered by institutions of higher education that are accredited by the Department of Higher Education or regionally accredited; or (3) meet the high school graduation requirement upon the successful completion of the board examination series which permits students in grades 9 through 12 to substitute achievement of a passing score on a series of examinations approved by the State of Connecticut.

    If the drop-out rate of the District is determined to be 8% or higher in the previous school year, the Board of Education shall establish an on-line credit recovery program for those students who are identified as being in danger of failing to graduate. These students, once identified by certified personnel, must be allowed to complete on-line District-approved coursework toward meeting high school graduation requirements. The District shall designate, from among existing staff, an online learning coordinator to administer and coordinate the online credit recovery program.

    Instruction

    Distance Education

    Virtual/Online Courses 6172.6

    Page 2 of 4

    The Board of Education recognizes students may benefit from on-line courses or post-secondary courses to assist students in obtaining credits necessary to earn a diploma, to maintain academic standings or to provide enrichment for those who might require special courses. Students taking such courses must be enrolled in the District.

    Credit from an online or virtual course or a university/college course may be earned in the following circumstances:

    1. A student has failed a course and wishes to recover credits in that course area.

    2. The student’s PPT or Section 504 Team has determined it to be an appropriate means of instruction.

    3. The administration, with agreement from the student’s teachers and parents/guardians, determines the student requires a differentiated or accelerated learning environment.

    4. The district has expelled the student from the regular school setting, and the student has been offered an alternative educational opportunity.

    5. The high school offers the course, but the student is unable to take it due to an unavoidable scheduling conflict.

    As determined by Board policy, students applying for permission to take a virtual/on-line course will do the following:

    1. Complete prerequisites and provide teacher/counselor recommendations to confirm the student possesses the maturity level needed to function effectively in an online/college learning environment.

    2. Obtain the written approval of the Principal or his/her designee before a student enrolls in a virtual course or a university/college course.

    3. Adhere to the District code of conduct to include rules of behavior and consequences for violations.

    Instruction

    Distance Education

    Virtual/Online Courses 6172.6

    Page 3 of 4

    4. Adhere to attendance requirements of the District.

    The school must receive an official record of the final grade before awarding credit toward graduation. Only courses approved by the Vernon Public Schools shall be posted on student transcripts.

    Any and all fees imposed on the learner are the sole responsibility of the learner and not the Board of Education or its designee. However, the Board of Education will cover the fees for virtual or online courses in these instances:

    1. The student’s PPT or Section 504 Team has determined it to be an appropriate means of instruction.

    2. The administration, with agreement from the student’s teachers and parents/guardians, determines the student requires a differentiated or accelerated learning environment.

    3. The student has failed a course and wishes to recover credits in that course area through NovaNet during the school year.

    4. The district has expelled the student from the regular school setting, and the student has been offered an alternative educational opportunity.

    Vernon Public Schools shall be responsible for providing appropriate supervision and monitoring of students taking virtual courses.

    Students will have access to sufficient library media resources such as a “virtual library” available through the World Wide Web, laboratory facilities, technical assistance, and hands-on training and information.

    The District will evaluate the educational effectiveness of the distance education courses and the teaching/learning process to include assessments based on state curriculum standards as well as student satisfaction.

    (cf. 61411.321 – Computers: Acceptable Use of the Internet)

    (cf. 6141.1 – Independent Study)

    (cf. 6146 Graduation Requirements)

    Instruction

    Distance Education

    Virtual/Online Courses 6172.6

    Page 4 of 4

    Legal Reference: Connecticut General Statutes

    10-221 Boards of education to prescribe rules, policies and procedures

    10-221a High school graduation requirements. (as amended by P.A. 00-124, An Act Concerning High School Diplomas and Veterans of World War II, P.A. 00-156, An Act Requiring a Civics Course for High School Graduation and P.A. 08-138, An Act Concerning High School Credit for private World Language Courses, Other Subject Areas) and P.A.

    10-111, An Act Concerning Education Reform in Connecticut.

    ADOPTED: July 16, 2012


    6173 Homebound Instruction (Policy Revised 6-24-2019)

    Instruction

    Homebound/Hospital Instruction 6173


    Home and hospital instruction shall be a teaching service available, as mandated by Section 10-76d-15 of the Connecticut State Board of Education Regulations. Students diagnosed by a physician with a medical or mental health condition and are unable to attend school for a period of two weeks or longer are eligible for homebound instruction. A student's condition that requires absence from school for short, repeated periods of time may also be eligible for homebound instruction. The purpose of home or hospital instruction shall be to help students to keep up with their work even though unable to attend school because of their condition. Instruction provided pursuant to this policy shall maintain the continuity of the student’s general education program and, in the case of a student with a disability, shall be provided so as to enable the student to continue to participate in the general education curriculum and to progress towards meeting the goals and objectives in the student’s IEP.

    The PPT shall consider the educational needs of a student with a disability who is medically complex and the need for instruction is to be provided in accordance with an IEP when said student is not able to attend school. A student with a "medically complex" disability is one who has a serious, ongoing illness or chronic condition for at least a year which requires prolonged or intermittent hospitalization and ongoing medical treatments.

    Homebound instruction may also be provided for those students who have been excluded from regular school attendance for disciplinary reasons if determined by the Board and Superintendent.

    The Board directs the Superintendent to develop administrative regulations to guide the implementation of this policy.

    Legal Reference: Connecticut General Statutes

    Section 10-76d-15 of the Regulations of Connecticut State Agencies as amended.

    10-76d Duties and powers of Boards of Education to provide special education programs and services.

    10-233a et sec. Exclusion.

    Policy revised: June 24, 2019

    June 23, 2012


    6174 Summer School (Policy Reviewed 6-25-2012)

    Instruction

    Summer School 6174


    General

    The Board of Education shall offer summer school programs on a self-sustaining basis.

    Admission: Student attendance at summer school shall be voluntary, and transportation is the responsibility of parents/guardians, except for students enrolled in Special Education programs.

    1. Elementary: Admission to elementary summer school classes will be limited to students who will be enrolled in grades K-6 in September following the summer school session and who are current district residents.

    2. Secondary: Admission to secondary summer school classes for enrichment or non-credit courses must be approved by the school principal following review with the Superintendent of schools or designee. Admission to a make-up course for credit will be permitted for students previously enrolled in the course who have not previously received credit for that course. Credit for courses not normally offered by the school district may be granted with prior approval from the high school principal.

    3. Tuition: Non-residents will be required to pay fees as established by the Board of Education.

    REVIEWED: June 25, 2012

    6200 Adult/Continuing Education (Policy Revised 2-9-2015)

    Instruction

    Adult/Continuing Education 6200


    The district shall establish and maintain a program of adult education classes open to all residents of the district and region who are 17 years of age and older and, who are not otherwise attending a public day school program (10-69). The program shall offer a variety of subjects to serve the community’s civic, cultural, vocational and educational need. Course needs and interests shall determine offerings at the various locations. Provisions for students under the age 17 (10-233d, expulsion and 10-73d, teen mothers) can be made with administrative approval.

    Tuition shall not be charged to adult residents for high school completion, Americanization, and for English language learning.

    Students in Day Secondary School Programs within the school district or region may enroll in adult education classes for one unit of study, provided that it results in the student’s ability to graduate on time, and provided that school administrators approve of this course of study.

    Adults Wishing to Enroll in Day Secondary School Programs: Adults who are residents of the school district may enroll free of charge in day classes at the high school level as space is available. Selection of classes available to adults will be determined by the high school principal in consultation with the Superintendent. Applications will be processed through the principal or designee and by high school guidance counselors. Adults enrolled in day secondary classes will abide by student rules and regulations of the high school.

    The enrichment (Continuing Education) offerings shall be open to residents and non-residents who are 18 years of age or older. Course offerings shall be determined by response to courses previously given and by newly arising needs and interests, subject to limitations of the locations, teaching personnel, and equipment. Fees are determined yearly and based on the specific course.

    Legal Reference:

    Connecticut General Statutes

    10-67 Adult education-definitions

    10-69 Adult education (as amended by PA 03-100 and PA 11-126)

    10-71 State grants for adult education programs.

    10-73a Adult education

    10-73b Grants for adult education services of programs conforming to state plan.

    10-73c Basic adult education programs.

    REVISED: February 9, 2015

    June 25, 2012