Student Education Rights Overview

Report
J ES SICA S C HNEIDER, STA FF AT TOR NEY
C A NDACE M OORE, STA FF AT TOR NEY
E D U C AT IO N A L E Q U IT Y P RO J E C T
NATIONAL IMPACT
NATIONAL IMPACT
LOCAL IMPACT
SOURCE:
Eric Fischer (2010) at
https://www.flickr.com/photos/walkingsf/sets/72157624812674967/map/ .
License: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/legalcode
LOCAL IMPACT
DISCIPLINE BY RACE (‘12-’13)
DISCIPLINE FOR STUDENTS W/ DISABILITIES
(81%)
WHAT DOES THE CHICAGO
LAWYERS’ COMMITTEE DO TO
COMBAT STPP?
E D U C AT I O N A L E Q U I T Y P R O J E C T
MISSION:
P ROT E C T A N D P RO M OT E AC C E S S TO E D U C ATI O N BY
ADDRESSING INDIVIDUAL AND SYSTEMIC BARRIERS
T H AT D I S P RO P O RT IO N AT ELY I M PAC T D I S A DVA N TAG E D
C O M M U N I T I E S ( E . G . R AC E , P O V E R T Y, LG B T Q ,
DISABILITIES, ETC)
PROTECTING INDIVIDUAL STUDENTS’ RIGHTS
Pro bono cases
 Expulsion representation
 Re-enrollment advocacy
 Anti-bullying advocacy
Affirmative litigation
 DOE and DOJ complaints based on discrimination
 Litigation based on discrimination
PROMOTING SYSTEMIC REFORM
School policy reform efforts
 Changes to student codes of conduct
 Addressing systemic discrimination and unfair disproportionality
Stakeholder development
 Trainings for teachers, administration, parents, and students
Reports/briefs/ articles
Racial justice work
EMPOWERING COMMUNITIES &
BUILDING PARTNERSHIPS
Advisor to community groups
 Standing Up For Each Other (SUFEO)
 Restorative Justice Initiative
Advocate Partnerships
 School Discipline Working Group
 School Closings Working Group
Outreach
 Know your rights trainings for parents and students
Community Lawyering
 Voices of Youth in Chicago Education (VOYCE)
13
ATTORNEY PRO BONO TRAINING
Overview of School
Discipline Law and CPS
Updates
School-Based Arrests, Suspension, & Expulsion Under
IL law and the Code of Conduct
14
CPS
 The
Chicago Public Schools is the third
largest school district in the United States
with more than 600 schools providing
education to approximately 400,000
children. Our vision is that every student in
every neighborhood will be engaged in a
rigorous, well-rounded instructional
program and will graduate prepared for
success in college, career and life.
(cps.edu)
15
What do we need to cover?
 IL
School Code (105 ILCS 5/10-22.6, 5/20.12,
5/13A-1)
 CPS Code of Conduct
 The CPS Discipline system
 Suspensions
 Expulsions
 Other
Interventions
 Hearings
NOTE: A separate presentation will cover law
for students with disabilities
16
Beyond CPS
 Other
Codes of Conduct or Student
Handbooks
 Suburban
school districts
 Charter schools
 Board Policies and Procedures
17
Police Involvement in CPS
Discipline
 School
administrators contact the Chicago
Police Department (CPD) in two situations:
 To
seek assistance with an emergency situation or
 To notify law enforcement of a criminal act
 There
are no more situations of mandatory
police notification for non-emergency situations
(except for drugs and firearms) and there are
new guidelines this year of what factors to
consider:
18
Factors school officials
should consider:
 Whether
student possessed or was in
possession of illegal drugs, narcotics,
controlled substances, or “look-alikes.”
 Whether student was in possession of a
firearm (defined in the reference guide)
(CPD must be notified in that situation)
 The severity of the criminal violation and
the degree of harm to the school
community
19
Factors, continued
 Whether
a person was physically inured as
a result of the student’s conduct
 Whether the student presents an
imminent danger to the health, safety,
welfare of others, and
 The student’s age (for 5th grade or below,
school staff must consult with the Law
Department PRIOR to reporting to CPD)
20
The CPS Student Code of
Conduct

The CPS Student Code of Conduct governs what
types of punishment are acceptable for which
offenses.

Parents and students are both required to sign an
“Acknowledgement of Receipt of the Student Code
of Conduct.” This will be introduced at a hearing.

The 2014-15 Student Code of Conduct is available
online on CPS’ website. Please read the Code of
Conduct!
NOTE: While some charter schools use the CPS SCC,
most do not. Charters also are exempt from most of IL
School Code

21
General Requirements Under
the SCC
 SCC
Applies to students at all times during
the school day, including





While on school property
While traveling to and from school
At any school-related event
On any vehicle funded by CPS (like a school
bus)
While using the CPS network
22
New: Guidelines for Effective
Discipline (CPS)


Starting this year, school administrators must
comply with the Guidelines for Effective Discipline,
which shall be issued by the office of Social and
Emotional learning
At minimum, a principal or his/her designee has to:






Redirect to correct behavior
Intervene
Gather information
Analyze whether the behavior falls within the SCC
Discuss with the student and provide him/her an
opportunity to explain
Make a determination and assign interventions or
consequences
23
New Guidelines (continued)
 The
principal/designee also must:
o
o
o
Complete a report in IMPACT for all inappropriate
behaviors under the SCC
Inform parents/guardians of their right to appeal if
they believe that the consequence is unwarranted
tor excessive
Restore the student’s participation in the school
community (re-entry meetings)
**The Code dictates that administrators use
out of school suspensions as a last resort
and only when in-school interventions and
consequences are insufficient**
24
Offenses in the Student Code
of Conduct
The SCC divides offenses into six groups:
• Group 1-Innappropriate Behavior
• Group 2-Disruptive Behavior
• Group 3-Seriously Disruptive Behavior
• Group 4-Very Seriously Disruptive Behavior


For each group, there are available interventions
and consequences.
Out of school suspension now becomes available
starting with Group 4
25
Group 5 and 6 Offenses
 These
are described as “Most Seriously
Disruptive Behaviors” and “Illegal and
Most Seriously Disruptive Behaviors”
 A student may be suspended up to 10
days, but a plan must be created and
written justification submitted to IMPACT
(Specifically, 5-10 days for Group 6, 3-5
days for Group 5)
26
What is a CPS Suspension?




In-School Skill Building
Suspension
Removal of a student
from his/her regular
schedule for more than
60 mins. of the school day
Should engage in
structured activities
An in-school suspension
shall not exceed 5 days.
Reasonable efforts must
be made to contact the
parent/guardian
Out-of-School Suspension
 The student is removed
from class or school
attendance.
 An out-of-school
suspension shall not
exceed 10 days.
 Reasonable attempts
must be made to contact
parent/guardian
 They are excused
absences
 Principal must ensure
student is able to obtain
homework
27
Suspensions (10 Days or less): Illinois
State Law

Ill. Rev. Stat. ch. 122, § 10-22.6
Suspension must be reported immediately to
student’s parents, with a full statement of reasons for
the suspension and notice of right to a review

School board must be given summary of the notice,
including reasons for the suspension and the
suspension length

If requested by the parents, school board must
review the action of local school officials

At school board review, parents may appear and
discuss the suspension with the board or its hearing
officer
Remember..
28
 Now
students in pre-K through second grade
may NOT be assigned in-school or out-of school
suspensions.
 There
is a small exception for an emergency
one- day suspension if granted by the Network
Chief or Designee and after parent/guardian has
been notified.
29
How Does the School Notify the
Parent of a Suspension?
 Schools
are required to provide a parent with
written notification if they decide to suspend a
student.
 The notice must include three things:




The reason that the child is being suspended
The number of days for which the child is being
suspended
Notice of the parent’s right to appeal the school’s
decision.
Parent/guardian should be provided a copy of the
misconduct report
30
Misconduct Report
31
Due Process-Goss v. Lopez

The government cannot take away a property
interest—like education—without adequate notice and
an opportunity to be heard
The Supreme Court created the bright
line rule between short-term suspensions
(10 days or less, with less procedural
Requirements and long-term suspensions or expulsions
(more than 10 days, with more procedural protections)

32
How Does a Parent Appeal a
Suspension?
 Once
a student makes a decision about a
suspension or makes a referral for
expulsion, a parent has the right to appeal.
 The parent/guardian has the right to ask
the principal to review the consequence
and reconsider the decision
 If suspended, can contact the FACE office
(by phone) or the Network Chief and
request an appeal
33
What is a School Expulsion?



Expulsion is the removal of a student from
school for 11 or more consecutive days, up to
a maximum of two calendar years.
For Group 5-an expulsion hearing may be
requested
For Group 6-An expulsion hearing must be
requested for a student in 6th-12th grade or for
a 6-1 violation, and may be requested for 5th
grade and below

Students who commit extremely serious Group 5
or 6 misconducts can be assigned to an interim
alternative education setting
34
Expulsion Process-CPS
.
• Notice in writing
• Expulsion hearing takes place in central office
.
).
• Hearings are provided over by neutral hearing officer
• Representation
• Evidence, present witnesses
• Law Department represented by CPS Prosecutor
35
Expulsion-CPS and IL Law
 Expulsions
are governed by 105 ILCS
5/10/22.6
 Student may be expelled for “gross
disobedience or misconduct” Student and
parent must receive notice from the board


The notice must state the time, place and
purpose of the meeting/hearing and most
districts will also advise student can bring
representation
Hearing may be at the school, can be two
step process (hearing + board meeting)
36
Expulsion Hearings-CPS And
Others
 The
rules of evidence apply partially but
not fully. Expansive use of hearsay has
been found to violate due process, but
limited use is viewed as inevitable.
Colquitt v. Rich Township, 298 Ill.App.3d
856 (1st Dist. 1998).
 Hearsay often takes the form of
statements from other students
37
At the hearing: It’s not just about
whether someone “did it.”
Egregiousness
of conduct
History of past
conduct
Likelihood of
affecting other
children
Severity of the
punishment
Interests of the
Child
Robinson v. OPRF 213 Ill. App.3d 77 (1st Dist. 1991)
38
SMART Program and Other
Interventions-Advocacy




Students in CPS and now charter schools are also
entitled to request placement in the SMART
program in lieu of expulsion
The SMART program (Saturday Morning Alternative
Reach-out and Teach) requires that students
attend eight consecutive Saturday sessions. For
two of those sessions the student must be
accompanied by a parent. The program also
includes a 20 hour community service requirement.
Other intervention programs may be assigned and
other restorative justice practices may be used.
Administrators now have Effective Discipline
Guidelines suggesting restorative practices
39
How Does a Parent Appeal an
Expulsion?
 CPS
expulsion decisions may be appealed by
filing for certiorari in the chancery division of the
circuit court of cook county.
 First, parents can appeal the final determination
in writing to the Chief Executive Officer’s
designee, the Department of Student
Adjudication or another identified person in the
school district
 Courts tend to give a lot of deference to school
districts to determine discipline
40
How does this work in
practice?
 CLC
receives intake, screens
 Figures out CPS or not, where the student
is in the process
 Depending on timing might get release
from the parent right away and contact
the school
 Need to get release to get information
and student records
41
Then…
 Send
out information to list of pro bono
volunteers
 Get interested volunteer
 Volunteer runs conflicts check
 Attorney meets with parent and student
 CLC staff available for consulting,
questions, strategy discussions
 Timeline can be quick
42
After an expulsion….
 What
 Do
happens to the student?
they go to school? Where?
 Does
that happen automatically?
Alternative Schools
“An expelled pupil may be
immediately transferred
to an alternative program
in the manner provided in
Article 13A or 13B of
this Code. A pupil must
not be denied transfer
because of the expulsion,
except in cases in which
such transfer is deemed
to cause a threat to the
safety of students or
staff in the alternative
program.”
(105 ILCS 5/10-22.6)




Allows but does not require a
district to immediately transfer a
student who has been suspended
or expelled
Students cannot directly enroll on
their own in a program if the
district has chosen not to transfer
them
Alternative programs can only
refuse to accept students if they
are “deemed to cause a threat
to the safety of students or staff in
the alternative program”
The “threat to safety” extends to
overcrowding – if the alternative
program believes that adding a
new student would overcrowd
the school and endanger the
safety of other students, it may
deny the transfer
44
Free Legal Assistance is
Available

Several civil rights nonprofits provide free legal assistance to students
facing suspension or expulsion from public school.

Chicago Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law


Legal Assistance Foundation




Provides assistance exclusively to students with disabilities
800.537.2632
Chicago Coalition for the Homeless



Provides assistance primarily to students with disabilities
312.341.1070
Equip for Equality


312.630.9744
Provides assistance to students who are homeless, in shelters, not in
permanent housing, or otherwise at risk.
312.850.4783
Cabrini Green Legal Aid


Provide assistance to Chicago residents meeting income requirements
312.850.4783
45
Scenario

Student X is caught at school with marijuana.
Administrators talk to a friend of the student who
says X has sold to him before. Administrators find
text messages supposedly related to the sales
on the friend’s phone. They also find a
Facebook picture of X smoking marijuana on
the friend’s wall. Police are called and student is
arrested. Student is charged with school
violation of possessing drugs and intent to sell.
Student is suspended and referred for expulsion,
school administrators have told the parents it
would be easier to just withdraw X instead of
going through with the hearing.
46
Thank You!
Jessica Schneider and Candace Moore
Educational Equity Project

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