Ipswich Middle School
Home of the Tigers
IPSWICH MIDDLE SCHOOL
130 High Street
Ipswich, MA 01938
Our mission at the Ipswich Middle School is to create a nurturing community where students are encouraged to develop confidence as lifelong learners with the awareness and flexibility necessary to adapt to a changing world.
We strive to bring out the best in every student and adult in our learning community.
Ipswich Middle School Students are…
Truthful. We are true to ourselves and to others.
Inclusive. We are inclusive of all. We do not judge others. We accept everyone for who he or she is.
Gracious. We are proud of our accomplishments, but we are also humble.
Enthusiastic. We are persistent and show 100% effort in everything we do.
Respectful. We treat others with care.
Be a TIGER!
Ipswich Middle School Main Numbers:
Principal Assistant Principal
David Fabrizio Kathy McMahon
Administrative Assistant School Secretary
Eileen Young Katie Henderson
Program Manager – Special Education Guidance Counselor (A-M)
Jackie Potter Laura Ananian
Adjustment Counselor Guidance Counselor (L-Z)
Gena Bevilacqua Allison Tivnan
School Nurse School Resource Officer
Jennifer Reed, R.N Joe Perna
This Book Belongs to:
Grade: Homeroom #: Teacher:
Code of Conduct
The Ipswich Public Schools expect students to treat others with respect and courtesy and to conduct themselves in a manner worthy of respect of others in order to promote a safe and positive school climate. This begins and ends with self-discipline. Our code of conduct includes respecting people, property and, most importantly, you. All students will respect the property of others, have no involvement with illegal substances or articles, and resolve conflict in a non-violent and responsible manner. Bullying, harassment and hazing will not be tolerated.
Every student deserves a safe learning environment. Any member of the school community whose conduct adversely affects the school will be in serious breach of the Ipswich Middle School Code of Conduct. This warrants appropriate forms of intervention.
The Ipswich Middle School Code of Conduct applies to all members of the school who are in attendance, on the way to or from school, and at any school-sponsored activity on the property or elsewhere.
Procedures and Protocol
School starts at 7:45 a.m., students should not be on school grounds before 7:00 a.m. Students may eat breakfast in the cafeteria beginning at 7:00 a.m. School is dismissed at 2:21 p.m., except on Thursdays when dismissal is 1:17 p.m. Please see the calendar for the few exceptions.
All school doors will be locked at 8:00 AM and remain locked throughout the school day. Visitors must ring the security doorbell and identify themselves and the reason for their visit before being admitted to sign in at the front office.
Parents are asked to call the Main Office in the evening, prior to an absence, or by 8:00 on the morning of an absence to notify us. If we do not receive notification of an absence, we will make an attempt to contact a parent by phone.
When the student returns from an extended absence, a note explaining the absence is always necessary. Excused absences are for illness, court appearances, family emergencies, medical and dental appointments, religious holidays or other emergencies approved by the administration. It is recommended that medical and dental appointments be made outside of school hours. Students may not attend or take part in student activities on the day of an absence – this includes dances and after school sports. Students must be in school by 9:00 a.m. in order to participate in after school activities or functions on that day. For one day absences, students should try to use a classmate as a “homework buddy” or check the voicemail or website of the teacher.
Every effort should be made to make travel arrangements for family vacations during vacation periods and not during school instructional time. If this is unavoidable, prior permission may be granted by the principal with advance notice of at least two weeks. A form may be obtained in the main office for this purpose.
Dismissals: Students must present a dismissal note to the Main Office on the morning of dismissal. Students must be signed out before leaving the building.
Tardiness: School begins at 7:45 a.m. Any student arriving after that time will be considered tardy. Students who are late must have a note explaining good cause for tardiness and will be assigned an office detention after 3 unexcused tardy arrivals per trimester.
The table below outlines the absence and tardy procedures and consequences.
Student absent without phone call
School nurse calls home
Absent two consecutive days without parent contact by phone or note
Follow-up call from Guidance or Asst. Principal to parent
Fifth absence without medical documentation
Telephone call from Principal or Asst. Principal; Meeting with Guidance and/or Asst. Principal
Letter sent home; Letter placed in student cumulative folder; Parents are invited to meet with the Attendance Remediation team. Possible loss of activity privileges.
Each absence beyond seven without medical documentation
School obligated to file charges in court
Tardy three times in one trimester
One detention per each day tardy past two; Phone call home by Guidance or Asst. Principal
Tardy seven or more days
Detention for each day tardy; Parent conference with Guidance and Asst. Principal; Letter sent home and placed in student cumulative folder
Tardy ten or more days
Parent conference with Principal, Asst. Principal, School Resource Officer; Possible loss of lunch in cafeteria or activity privileges
All school transportation should be a safe, orderly and efficient activity. The Ipswich School Committee provides transportation in accordance with the law. Students and parents, however, should be aware that transportation of students is a conditional privilege and not an absolute right. The school committee has delegated the responsibility for dealing with discipline issues to the principal. For those buses operated by School Department employees, the discipline will be handled by the principal and the driver. The parents must be notified of all bus suspensions by the principal within twenty-four hours of the infraction.
Failure to abide by bus rules or follow directions will lead to the following progressive disciplinary steps:
- Warning (depending on the severity of the offense)
- Consequences (depending upon the severity of the offense)
- Removal from bus, both short term and long term.
The Code of Conduct is enforced during lunch. Students may lose the privilege of eating in the cafeteria. All food and drink is to be consumed in the cafeteria and not taken outdoors, into the halls or into the classrooms. Students are responsible for cleaning their area after they have finished eating.
The responsibility for dress and appearance begins with students and parents. Students are expected to come to school dressed in clothes that are appropriate for learning. Students should take pride in their appearance and dress appropriately for school. Their manner of dress should reflect the seriousness and purpose of school. Students who are found in violation of the dress code will be asked to change and parents may be called to provide suitable clothing. The following items will be considered a violation of dress code:
- Tops that show visible midriff or cleavage
- Badly ripped pants and shirts
- Clothing which displays profanity, nudity, explicit or otherwise illegal or questionable substances or activities
- Leggings worn as pants
- See-through clothing
- Heavy coats/jackets worn inside during the school day
- Chains, safety pins, studs, spikes on clothing
- Hats, with the exception of head coverings worn for religious, cultural or medical reasons.
- Skirts, dresses, shorts or tank tops that reveal undergarments or restrict movement. No undergarments shall be visibly displayed, nor shall underwear be visible through clothing material.
- In accordance with state law, shoes or sneakers shall be worn at all times.
Faculty or parent groups may recommend appropriate dress for school or special occasions. These events must meet the requirements set forth above and requirements will be conveyed in writing to both students and parents via email and paper handouts, to be sent home with students.
The principal and assistant principal have final discretion over dress code violations. Due to changing styles, this list is subject to change throughout the school year at the discretion of the principal and assistant principal.
Students’ participation in any extra-curricular activities will be determined by their behavior in all aspects of school. In order to attend dances, play on a sports team, participate in drama activities, or play intramural sports, students must be in good academic and disciplinary standing. A student may not participate in an activity if he or she received an “F” on the most recent progress report or report card. The criteria for good standing are determined by the principal and assistant principal.
While participating on field trips, students are expected to obey the instructions of chaperones, guides and any applicable rules of the field trip site. Violations of the Code of Conduct will result in disciplinary action. All students must present a signed “Parental Consent Release from Liability and Indemnity Agreement” form to the teacher in order to participate in the field trip. If a student does not return the indemnity form to the teacher, no written or phone authorization for that student to participate on the field trip can be accepted.
Lockers are school property and the school reserves the right to periodically inspect lockers to ensure compliance with school rules. Stickers and graffiti are not allowed. Locker contents are to be considered private property. All book bags will remain in lockers during class time. No student is allowed to open another student’s locker without permission. The principal or assistant principal has the authority to inspect a locker at any time.
School officials may search a student’s person, locker and/or desk, book bag and any luggage taken on athletic, band or other school trips if there is a reason to believe that drugs, alcohol, weapons or contraband are being held or transported. A search may also be warranted if school rules are being violated and/or a student’s actions jeopardize their individual safety or that of the school.
All visitors must report to the main office when entering the building. Student visitors are not allowed. Parents of prospective middle school students may contact the main office to arrange a school visit.
Principal’s Discretionary Statement
The Ipswich Middle School Principal reserves the right to use professional discretion to waive or adjust any of the above rules and regulations for students with extraordinary circumstances. Any such waiver and adjustment will be submitted in writing to the Superintendent.
Students are expected to work to the best of their ability in every aspect of their academic life. A major component of this expectation is academic integrity. Cheating and plagiarism will not be tolerated. Cheating refers to the giving or receiving of information in anything evaluated as the student’s own work. Plagiarism refers to stealing or passing off another’s work as one’s own.
- First offense: parent notified; student will be expected to redo assignment.
- Second offense: parent notified; student receives a grade of zero for the assignment; student will be expected to redo the assignment.
Cell Phones and Electronic Devices
Unless approved and supervised by a staff member the use of cell phones and electronic devices is prohibited during the school day. All devices should be shut off and placed in lockers. Failure to do so will lead to disciplinary action. This also includes cameras, iPads and any other device that can be used to communicate or post pictures or messages. This policy is in effect on all school sponsored trips, field trips and learning experiences.
Students should be prepared for class every day. This includes having the proper materials for class. Respectful behavior towards staff and fellow students must always be maintained. Failure to be respectful and follow school rules will lead to progressive disciplinary measures.
Drugs and Alcohol
Any student involved in the possession, use, distribution, or sale of drugs, e-cigarettes, drug paraphernalia (including vaping paraphernalia), synthetic drugs or alcohol in school or during a school function will be suspended for a minimum of five days. Additional penalties may be imposed depending on the severity and nature of the specific incident, up to and including expulsion from school for the remainder of the school year. The police may be notified of illegal actions involving drugs and alcohol.
Electronic Devices in the Classroom
As technology continues to evolve, more devices become available to students in their personal lives as well as in the classroom. Devices such as iPads, Kindles, iPods, Nooks, etc., are just a few examples of the emerging technology available to students. For these devices to be used in school, we require that students and parents both have an understanding of their proper use within the school environment and comply with the outlined policy. Students who use their devices, with teacher permission, must strictly adhere to this policy. Failure to comply will result in the student losing permission to use the device for the year. Any additional consequences will depend on the seriousness/inappropriateness of the offense.
Bomb threats, false alarms, and the inappropriate use of 911 calls jeopardize the safety and security of the entire school building. These offenses will result in suspension or expulsion, referral to the Superintendent of Schools for further action, and police notification.
Fighting during school or school-related activities for any reason will not be tolerated and is considered a very serious offense. Students guilty of instigating or participating in a fight will face suspension. All fighting incidents will be thoroughly investigated and parents will be notified.
Students are expected to treat each other with respect at all times. Intimidation, including written threats, online threats, physical gestures or inappropriate/obscene language, will not be tolerated. These offenses may result in suspension and may include police notification.
Any student found smoking in the building or on school property will face disciplinary action. Possession of tobacco products or lighting devices is similarly prohibited.
The posting of pictures from school or any school related activity is prohibited. Students are not allowed to take or post pictures of school personnel or classmates without explicit permission from the administration.
Social media is a public forum. Messages posted with the intent of ridiculing, harassing or threatening a student or staff member will be considered a violation of the Code of Conduct.
Students have a right to a safe, secure and peaceful school. Verbal and/or physical assaults are unacceptable. Students who are verbally abusive to other students will be subject to detention or suspension depending on the severity of the offense.
Willful defacing or destroying of school property may result in up to a 5 day suspension and restitution in the form of payment and/or community service may be required. Police will be notified.
Swearing, vulgar or obscene language will not be allowed at school or during school-related activities. Using such language will result in disciplinary action. Obscenities, vulgar language or gestures directed at staff or in the presence of staff will result in suspension.
A weapon is defined as any instrument designed or used to injure or intimidate another person. Students found in possession of a weapon will be subject to expulsion.
Detention and Suspension Procedures
Discipline is the responsibility of all parties involved in a student’s life: teachers, students, administrators and parents. We recognize that middle school students make mistakes. It is our job to help the students take responsibility for their actions, alter their undesirable behavior and learn from their mistakes. In many cases the learning process comes with a consequence. Our discipline consequences are teacher detention, office detention and out-of-school suspension. It is important to remember that discipline and responsibility are a vital part of the learning process. Middle school mistakes are not permanent; the lessons learned from them can last a lifetime.
Students will be assigned to detention as a consequence of certain unacceptable behaviors. Students will be asked to phone home to advise parents that they will be detained. Detention is for one half hour from 2:25 – 2:55 p.m. Students are expected to stay on the day of the assigned detention unless other arrangements have been made with administration.
Suspension from school is considered a “last resort” in developing good behavior. The student is responsible for teacher-provided homework and tests during the suspension period. Teachers will not be expected to tutor. Work missed by unexcused absence and suspension may be made up with credit. Suspension alternatives may also be arranged including parents accompanying their child to classes and lunch for the day or supervising the student in suspension at school.
Suspension will be preceded by a due process hearing involving the completion of a suspension form on which the student may make a statement. The parents will be
notified of the suspension by either a confirming telephone call or a letter informing them of: 1. the suspension; 2. the reason for the suspension; 3. the length of the suspension; and 4. the date the student may return to school. A copy of the form will be sent to the Superintendent of Schools and placed in the student’s file. Parents will be notified if an extended suspension or expulsion is being requested by the principal. If a student poses an immediate threat to the academic process, to him/her, or to the school, he/she will be sent home immediately and a hearing will follow. If the situation warrants, the principal may request the Superintendent’s approval to extend a suspension to more than ten consecutive days, necessitating a hearing before the school committee.
Suspension may be in school or out of school and will be determined by the principal or assistant principal. During suspension, students lose their right to be on school property and may not attend any school related events and activities.
Refer to the Student Handbook on our school website for a description of the expulsion policy.
Bullying of any type has no place in a school setting. The Ipswich Public Schools will endeavor to maintain a learning and working environment free of bullying. Bullying is considered to be any unwelcome written or verbal expressions, physical acts or gestures directed at a student or another member of the school community with the purpose (intended or not) to intimidate, frighten, ridicule, humiliate, or cause physical or emotional harm to that person including, without limitation, repeated taunting, threats of harm, verbal or physical intimidation, cyber-bullying (bullying through, without limitation, electronic emails, cellular phones, instant messages, text messages or websites), pushing, kicking, hitting, spitting, or taking or damaging another person’s personal property while on school grounds or engaged in any school activity, on or off campus.
If a student believes that they have been bullied by another student, they should report this to a trusted teacher, guidance counselor, parent/guardian, Assistant Principal, or Principal. Any accusation of bullying/cyber-bullying will be investigated by the Assistant Principal or Principal. A written report of the investigation may be filed with the Principal and Superintendent of Schools.
If it is determined that a student has bullied another student the consequences will be:
- A parent-student conference will be held with the Assistant Principal and/or Principal.
- The student may be asked to apologize to the victim.
- Depending on the severity of the incident, a student may be assigned up to 5 days of office detention and/or suspension from school.
- In cases of repeated bullying by a student, a recommendation will be made to the Superintendent and/or School Committee for further disciplinary action and/or possible expulsion from school.
- Depending on the severity of the incident, a referral will be made to the local police.
Reprisals, threats or intimidation of a student following bullying incidents will be treated as a serious offense and may result in a 5 day suspension. A referral may be made to the Superintendent for disciplinary action including referral to the School Committee for further action up to and including permanent expulsion from school. All reports of bullying will be treated as confidential and will be maintained in such a way as to protect both the student and the assumed.
The use of the internet and other computer software is a privilege. This privilege may be revoked at any time for abusive conduct. Examples of behavior which may result in the loss of computer privileges:
- Sending hate mail, making discriminatory remarks and any other anti-social behavior
- Accessing or processing pornographic material, inappropriate text files, or any files dangerous to the integrity of the local network
- Using the Internet to harm other people
- Interfering with other people’s computer work
- Trespassing in other people’s files
- Using someone’s name without their permission
- Using other people’s computer resources without authorization
- Using the Internet for illegal activities
Student computer files are considered to be school property and are subject to search. Consequences include loss of access to the computer for the remainder of the school year, as well as disciplinary action up to and including suspension.
The following grading system will be used by all teachers in all classes:
97 – 100= A+ 87 – 89 = B+ 77 – 79 = C+ 67 – 69 = D+
93 – 96 = A 83 – 86 = B 73 – 76 = C 65 – 66 = D
90 – 92 = A- 80 – 82 = B- 70 – 72 = C- 0 – 64 = F
- High Honors: Students must have earned 90-100% in all graded classes, including the related arts.
- Honors: Students must have earned 80-100% in all graded classes, including the related arts.
Students in grades 7 and 8 are invited to dances sponsored by the Student Senate.
- Dance hours are 7:00 – 9:00 p.m.
- Doors open at 7:00 PM.
- Dance ends at 9:00. Students cannot leave prior to the end of the dance unless a parent personally signs out the student.
- School Dress Code is followed at the dance.
- Students must be in good academic and disciplinary standing to attend the dance.
- Students must be present in school the day of the dance.
- Students with an “F” in any class on the day of the dance will not be allowed to attend.
- No outside guests are allowed.
- No high school students are permitted at middle school dances.
The Ipswich Middle School provides interscholastic programs in cross-country, soccer, basketball, track, and field hockey. Students must pay user fees, as determined by the Ipswich School Committee, and must have had a physical exam within the past 12 months. Intramural sports, math league and drama are also subject to activity fees, as determined by the Ipswich School Committee.
Where to Go/What to Do
are late Report to the Main Office.
have an accident Tell any teacher, the nurse, or the Main Office.
will be absent Parent calls the Main Office by 8:00 a.m.
need to be dismissed Bring dismissal note to Main Office before school.
Sign out in Main Office before you leave.
lose something Check around yourself, then notify the Main Office.
need to see a counselor Make an appointment or ask a teacher.
need academic help Make an appointment with your teacher.
need to report a concern See any teacher, your counselor, the nurse, or the principal.
Do it right away!
want to join a team Listen to announcements in the morning; ask your teachers
need to call home Ask your teacher to use the phone or use the phone in the Main Office.
need to talk to the nurse Go the nurse’s office before school, in between classes, or get a note from your teacher.
are worried about a friend Speak to your counselor, the nurse, your teachers or the principal. We are here to help!
have locker problems See your teacher or come to the Main Office.
forgot your lunch money Charge a lunch in the cafeteria.
have a great idea Bring it to the Student Leadership Senate, tell your teachers or tell Mr. Fabrizio.
IPSWICH PUBLIC SCHOOLS
MEAL CHARGING POLICY
The purpose of this policy is to provide guidance on charging procedures for meals served at the Ipswich Public Schools. Through the National School Lunch Program (NSLP) and School Breakfast Program (SBP) the Ipswich Public School District is able to provide nourishing meals to students. However, unpaid account balances impose financial burden on the food services department and in return on the school district. The Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) regulations places this liability on the district at the end of each fiscal year and requires that School Food Service Authorities (SFA’s) be made whole for any outstanding debt remaining at the end of each school year. To minimize the impact that outstanding debt due to meal charges may have on the district, the following procedures will be implemented. The goals of this policy are to maintain the financial stability of the program, continuing to provide nutritious meals to students, encourage parents to take responsibility for all outstanding balances, and to treat all students in a consistent and respectful manner.
Payment Options – All students are expected to pay for their meals at the time of service or to pre-pay by either sending in cash or check to the department or by paying through the town and school’s online payment system. School meals may be pre-paid on a daily, weekly, or monthly basis.
Low-Balance Reminders – Students will be reminded of low-balances at the point of sale. All parents may inquire about student account balances by contacting their student’s school cafeteria manager at any time.
Notice of Negative Balances – At the elementary school level, students are sent home with negative balance letters at the end of each week. At the middle and high school levels, students are reminded of negative balances at the point of service. In addition, parents will be contacted periodically to notify them of negative balances.
Setting Account Limits – Students will not be denied a first meal at either breakfast or lunch however, parents may contact their student’s cafeteria manager to place account limits on additional student purchases. No more than two lunches will be served to any one student. If you do not wish for your student to purchase any meals or a la carte items from the Food Services Department, please contact your student’s cafeteria manager to discuss accommodations.
Procedures on Charging Meals –
- Students Receiving Free/Reduced Price Meal Benefits
- a) Students who are eligible to receive free meals may receive one complete breakfast and one complete lunch per day. In order to receive the free meal, students must take all required meal components. Extra meals or a la carte items can only be purchased if the student has funds on his or her account or presents payment at the point of sale.
- b) Reduced price breakfast and lunch prices will be based upon the Federal Reimbursement Rate. In order to receive the reduced price meal, students must take all required meal components. Extra meals or a la carte items can only be purchased if the student has funds on his or her account or presents payment at the point of sale. If the student does not have adequate funds to purchase their meal at the point of purchase, their account will be charged for the full cost of that meal. They will be notified at the point of purchase that their account requires additional funds. Families will also be notified that their student’s balance is in the negative. Families with students who are eligible for reduced price meals that are still struggling to make payments are encouraged to contact their child’s cafeteria manager.
- All Other Students
- a) At the elementary level, al meal components are included at the point of service. At the middle and high school level, students may opt to decline some of the food offered. However, all student meals must contain the required meal components. The meal components include: milk, meat/meat-alternate, fruit, vegetable and grains. Students must select three (3) of the aforementioned meal components (one of which must be a serving of fruit or a vegetable for the meal) to be considered complete at the point of purchase. If a student reaches the point of sale without all required components, they will be prompted to return to the service line to take the necessary meal component. If a student comes back to the point of purchase with an extra meal, a la carte item and/or snack item and has a negative balance, they will be informed of the situation and will not be allowed to make the purchase.
- b) Elementary students will be allowed to charge up to a maximum dollar equivalent of (5) meals which will be known as the “account cap.” When the student reaches the “account cap” they will only be offered a designated menu alternate. Sample: Cheese sandwich with veggie sticks, fruit and milk. The designated menu alternate will be charged to the student’s lunch account at the standard lunch rate. It will be reported as a meal to the state and federal school lunch authorities and thus will be eligible for reimbursement. Parents/Guardians are responsible for payment of these meals to the food service program.
- c) Middle/High school students will be allowed to charge up to a maximum dollar equivalent of three (3) meals which will be known as the “account cap.” When the student reaches the “account cap” they will only be offered a designated menu alternate. Sample: Cheese sandwich with veggie sticks, fruit and milk. The designated menu alternate will be charged to the student’s lunch account at the standard lunch rate. It will be reported as a meal to the state and federal school lunch authorities and thus will be eligible for reimbursement. Once the student reaches the maximum meal charge, no a la carte items will be sold to the students. Parent/Guardians are responsible for payment of these meals to the food service program.
Notices by letter, email or phone call of low or deficit balances will be sent to parents/guardians when a student’s account balance reaches the account cap. After it is judged that the usual methods to collect the money owed the food services department have failed, then the Superintendent will intervene.
Any payments made by check that are returned to the district by the bank with notice of “insufficient funds” will require a penalty fee of $25.00 by the party writing the check (M.G.L. Chapter 60, Section 57A). The penalty fee will be made payable to the Town of Ipswich and sent to the Ipswich Public Schools Business Office.
All school cafeterias possess computerized point of sale/cash register systems that maintain a record of all monies deposited and spent for each student and said record will be made available to the parent/guardian upon request. The Food Service Program shall inform parents that meals can be paid for in advance and the balances maintained in their child’s account to minimize the possibility that the child may be without meal money on any given day.
If a student is without meal money on a consistent basis, the Principal and the Director of Finance will work with school staff to investigate the situation more closely, including contacting the parent/guardian about continued difficulties in payment. The district will work with families to ensure that every student has access to daily meals at school. We encourage families in need to apply for the Federal Free and Reduced Meal Program. Families that have continued difficulty paying their account balances should feel free to contact their student’s principal for assistance.
Adults are expected to pay for all meals received from the school food service department. Staff and faculty may also purchase any of the individually priced items using funds on their accounts or cash at the point of sale. Staff will not be allowed to charge any food items that will cause their account to go into deficit balance.
Withdrawn Students: For any student who is withdrawn, a written request for a refund of any money remaining in their account must be submitted. An email request is also acceptable. Requests should be sent to the cafeteria manager of their student’s school.
Graduating Students: For any student who is graduating with a remaining account balance, a written request for a refund of any money remaining in their account must be submitted. An email request is also acceptable. Requests should be sent to the cafeteria manager of their student’s school.
Funds remaining on graduating student’s accounts can also be transferred to a younger sibling’s account with a written request to the cafeteria manager.
Unclaimed Funds: All refunds must be requested within one year. Unclaimed funds will then become the property of the Ipswich Public Schools Food Service Program.
Discipline for Students with Disabilities
Students identified as receiving Special Education or 504 Plan services are expected to meet the school requirements for acceptable behavior, unless otherwise determined by the IEP Team, or 504 Team. Additional provisions that can be made for students with disabilities include the following:
- The IEP or 504 Plan for each student will indicate if the student’s disability requires a modification of the discipline code.
- The building principal will notify respectively the building Program Manager (for special education students) or counselor (504 Plan students) regarding the suspension offense for a student with disabilities within one school working day. The Program Manager will immediately notify the Director of Pupil Services.
The provisions also apply to students in the process of being evaluated for services, including:
- Students who have had concern expressed in writing by parents.
- Students for whom staff have expressed concerns regarding a pattern of concerning behavior. This concern can have been expressed to the principal, Program Manager, or the PPS Director.
- Students who are formally in the process of having been referred for an evaluation or are suspected as having a disability.
These provisions do not apply to students whose parents have refused an evaluation or special education services. They also do not apply to students who have been evaluated and have been found ineligible.
The principal, special education staff, counselors and other related service providers have all been trained in understanding the regulations regarding the following:
- Free and Appropriate Public Education (FAPE): The Ipswich Public School is responsible for providing FAPE to all students. A special education student may not be suspended for more than 10 days without the provision of FAPE. Schools are responsible for ensuring that students receive educational services that allow access to the general curriculum and can make progress toward IEP goals.
- Manifestation Determination: For suspensions that will extend beyond 10 school days, the special education Team must determine if the behavior that warranted the disciplinary act was caused by or had a direct relationship to the disability, or was a direct result of the school district’s failure to implement the IEP.
- Functional Behavioral Assessment (FBA) : An FBA must be completed within 10 school days after the 11th day of suspension. In the Ipswich Public Schools, the stand practice is to closely monitor student suspensions and patterns and proactively begin an FBA at or around the 7th day of suspension. The goal of the FBA is to determine the function or reason for the problematic behavior(s) and to proactively develop a positive Behavior Intervention Plan (BIP).
- Interim Alternative Educational Setting (IAES): An IAES is a change in placement that allows the student to receive educational services. Teams must decide, based on a student’s unique circumstances, when an IAES is appropriate for suspensions that extend beyond 10 days. Teams must work with the PPS Director to discuss IAES options that are appropriate and available.
Special circumstances exist when a student engages in behavior that includes the following:
- Possession of a weapon
- Possession of drugs
- Potential to cause serious bodily harm.
If the behavior includes one or more of the above, the principal of the school may order the student to an IAES for up to 45 school days or beyond, if deemed appropriate. Parents will have been informed of this process through provision of both oral and written notice regarding the opportunity for a hearing. In the case of the special education student, the Manifestation Determination Meeting will be held to examine the potential nexus of the offense to the disability. Early scheduling of this meeting allows the team to examine the patterns of behavior, and to discuss appropriate responses to support the student, including assessments and or changes to the IEP or 504 Plan.
For further information:
At the time of printing, the Ipswich Public Schools’ policies were in the process of being reviewed and updated. Please refer to the district website (www.ipsk12.net ) for all of the district policies, as well as other information that may be useful to students and parents.