COMMONWEALTH OF VIRGINIA

DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION

P.O. BOX 2120

RICHMOND, VIRGINIA 23218-2120

SUPTS. MEMO NO. 201

October 7, 2005

INFORMATIONAL

TO:

Division Superintendents

 

FROM:

 

Jo Lynne DeMary

Superintendent of Public Instruction

SUBJECT:

Revision -- Student Conduct Policy Guidelines

 

The Board of Educations Student Conduct Policy Guidelines were first developed in 1994 in response to action by the 1993 General Assembly that required the board to establish such guidelines, as reflected in the Code of Virginia Section 22.1-279.6 of the Code. The guidelines were revised in 2001 and again in 2004 to reflect numerous changes in federal and state laws, regulations, and relevant case law. The guidelines are intended to aid school boards in developing and implementing student conduct standards and policies. Local school boards are required (Sections 22.1-253.13:7(3) and 22.1-279.4(B)), to adopt and revise regulations for codes of student conduct that are consistent with, but may be more stringent than, these guidelines.

 

The 2005 General Assembly adopted HB 1573 (Albo), HB 2266 (Marshall), HB 2879 (Marshall), and HB 1716 (Fralin)) that amended Sections 22.1-279.6, 22.21-208.01, and 22.1-279.3:1 of the Code of Virginia to add requirements that gang-related activity and bullying be added to the topics addressed by the guidelines; the requirement that school division character education programs include the inappropriateness of bullying; and the addition of stalking to the list of offenses required to be reported to division superintendents and the principals to law enforcement officers and subsequently reported in the annual reports made to the Department of Education. Additionally there are requirements concerning accuracy in reporting of incidents by school personnel, and requirements that school division personnel report certain incidents to parents and notify them when they occur.

 

In response to the legislation, The Virginia Student Conduct Policy Guidelines have been revised and were adopted by the Board of Education on September 21, 2005. The guidelines may be downloaded from the Department of Education's website: www.pen.k12.va.us/VDOE/Instruction/Sped/stu_conduct.pdf.

 

Questions may be directed to Arlene Cundiff, coordinator of the safe and drug-free schools program at 804-225-2871, Arlene.Cundiff@doe.Virginia.gov or to Cynthia Cave, director of the office of student services at 804-225-2818, Cynthia.Cave@doe.Virginia.gov.

 

JLD/ADC/erc