DisciplinePowerpoint Q & A 2.13.14x

Report
Applicability of
Chapter 222
With Emphasis on MGL c.71, 37H, MGL c.71, 37H1/2, and
MGL c.71, 37H3/4
PowerPoint Created By: Elizabeth Tashash, Education
Advocacy Clinic Student, Suffolk University Law School
Presenter: Isabel Raskin
Chapter 222’s Applicability
 Chapter 222 applies in the following ways to the
following Massachusetts statutes:
 Amended MASS. GEN. LAWS ch. 71, § 37H (2012)
 Amended MASS. GEN. LAWS ch. 71, § 37H1/2 (2012)
 Created MASS. GEN. LAWS ch. 71, § 37H3/4 (2012)
 Amended MASS. GEN. LAWS ch. 76, § 1 (2012)
 Created MASS. GEN. LAWS ch. 76, § 1B (2012)
 Amended MASS. GEN. LAWS ch. 76, § 18 (2012)
 Created MASS. GEN. LAWS ch. 76, § 21 (2012)
 Referenced MASS. GEN. LAWS ch. 71B, § 5A (2012)
Question 1: Yes or No?
 Jen, a general education sophomore at Acme High
School, is caught with marijuana in her purse at Acme’s
homecoming dance.
 At the suspension hearing (and assuming all due
process rights are provided), Acme High School’s
principal decides to expel Jen.
 Can the principal do this under Chapter 222?
Answer 1: Yes
 Under MASS. GEN. LAWS ch. 71, § 37H(a), any student
found in possession of a controlled substance, such as
marijuana, may be subject to expulsion from the school
or school district by the principal.
 However, MASS. GEN. LAWS ch.71, § 37H3/4(a) states
that MASS. GEN. LAWS ch.71, § 373/4 does not govern
violations of MASS. GEN. LAWS ch.71, § 37H(a).
 MASS. GEN. LAWS ch.71, § 37H3/4 was created by Chapter
222.
Question 2: Yes or No?
 Using the fact pattern from Question 1, what if Jen’s
out-of-school expulsion results in her exclusion from
Acme High School from January through June?
 Can the principal do this under Chapter 222?
Answer 2: Yes
 Under MASS. GEN. LAWS ch.71, § 37H3/4(f), no student
shall be expelled from a school or school district for a
time period that exceeds 90 school days, beginning the
first day the student is removed from an assigned
school building.
 However, MASS. GEN. LAWS ch.71, § 37H3/4(a) states
that MASS. GEN. LAWS ch.71, § 373/4 does not govern
violations of MASS. GEN. LAWS ch.71, § 37H(a).
Question 3: Yes or No?
 Using the fact pattern from Question 1, during Jen’s
exclusion from Acme High School, she does not
receive any educational services from Blackacre
School District, the school district of which Acme High
School is a part.
 As a result, she misses all of her final exams.
 Can Blackacre School District do this under Chapter
222?
Answer 3: No
 Under MASS. GEN. LAWS ch. 71, § 37H(e), any school
district that suspends or expels a student under MGL
c.71, 37H shall continue to provide educational
services to the student during the period of suspension
or expulsion, pursuant to MASS. GEN. LAWS ch. 76, § 21.
 Under MASS. GEN. LAWS ch. 76, § 21—created by
Chapter 222—principals shall develop a school-wide
education service plan for all students who are expelled
or suspended from school for more than 10
consecutive school days, whether in or out of school.
Question 4: Yes or No?
 Using the fact pattern from Question 1, what if two
months after Jen’s expulsion, she and her family move
to a house located in the Whiteacre School District.
 Does Whiteacre School District have to perform any
action with regard to Jen?
Answer 4: Yes
 Under MASS. GEN. LAWS ch. 71, § 37H(e), if a student
moves during the period of suspension or expulsion,
the new district of residence shall either admit the
student to its schools or provide educational services to
the student in an education service plan, pursuant to
MASS. GEN. LAWS ch. 76, § 21.
Question 5: Yes or No?
 What if Jen was not a sophomore in high school, but a
12-year-old, general education seventh grader at Acme
Middle School, and she was found with the drug “Molly”
at the middle school’s annual Walk-A-Thon fundraiser
and the principal expels her?
 Okay to do under MASS. GEN. LAWS ch. 71, §37H3/4?
Answer 5: Yes
 12-year-old Jen can be indefinitely expelled, just as
sophomore Jen could.
 However, 12-year-old Jen would likewise benefit from
MASS. GEN. LAWS ch. 71, § 37H(e).
 Under MASS. GEN. LAWS ch. 71, § 37H(e), any school
district that suspends or expels a student under MGL
c.71, 37H shall continue to provide educational services
to the student during the period of suspension or
expulsion, pursuant to MASS. GEN. LAWS ch. 76, § 21.
Question 6: Yes or No?
 Alex is a 15-year-old freshman at Acme High School. Recently,
the Blackacre District Attorney’s office issued a felony delinquency
complaint against Alex for an alleged assault with a dangerous
weapon charge.
 Upon learning of the complaint, Acme High School’s principal
decided to suspend Alex until the delinquency proceeding is
complete which can take as long as 4-6 months.
 Alex receives written notice of the charges, reasons for the
suspension, and notice of appeal; however he does not have an
opportunity to meet with the principal to discuss the charges and
reasons for suspension prior to the suspension taking effect.
 Can the principal do this?
Answer 6: Yes
 While a student covered under MASS. GEN. LAWS ch. 71,
§ 37H3/4(c) would have the opportunity to meet with
the principal to discuss the charges and reasons for the
suspension prior to it taking effect, MASS. GEN. LAWS ch.
71, § 37H3/4 does not apply to students charged with a
felony under MASS. GEN. LAWS ch. 71, § 37H1/2(1).
Question 7: Yes or No?
 Using the same fact pattern as in Question 6, Alex does
not receive any educational services while he is
suspended.
 Can Acme High School’s principal do this?
Answer 7: No
 Under MASS. GEN. LAWS ch. 71, § 37H1/2, any school
district that suspends or expels a student under MASS.
GEN. LAWS ch. 71, § 37H1/2(1) or (2), respectively, shall
continue to provide educational services to the student
during the period of suspension or expulsion, pursuant
to MASS. GEN. LAWS ch. 76, § 21.
Question 8: Yes or No
 Two children get into a fist fight in school. The principal
suspends both students for 100 days each, saying the
school has a zero tolerance policy for fighting.
 Okay to do under Chapter 222 (MASS. GEN. LAWS ch.
71, § 37H3/4)?
Answer 8: No
 MASS. GEN. LAWS ch. 71, § 37H3/4 governs the suspension
and expulsion of students in public schools who are not
charged with MASS. GEN. LAWS ch. 71, § 37H and MASS. GEN.
LAWS ch. 71, § 37H1/2 offenses.
 MASS. GEN. LAWS ch. 71, § 37H3/4(b) states that any person
acting as the decision-maker deciding the consequences for the
student shall exercise discretion and avoid expulsion until other
remedies are employed.
 MASS. GEN. LAWS ch. 71, § 37H3/4(f) states that no student shall
be suspended from a school district for a time period that
exceeds 90 school days, beginning on the first day that a
student is removed from the school building.
Question 9: Yes or No?
 Michael, a 13-year-old seventh grader at Acme Middle
School, has already been absent 6 times this school
year. These absences have not been excused.
 Does the principal of Acme Middle School have to
notify Michael’s parent regarding the absences?
Answer 9: Yes
 Pursuant to MASS. GEN. LAWS ch. 76, § 1B, a new
section created by Chapter 222, Acme Middle School’s
principal must make a reasonable effort to meet with
the parent or guardian of a student who has 5 or more
unexcused absences to develop action steps for
student attendance.
 MASS. GEN. LAWS ch. 76, § 1B establishes a pupil
absence notification program
Question 10: Yes or No?
 A 9th grade freshman in high school has been suspended
three times this year already, the first time for three (3) days,
the second time for five (5) days, the third time for one (1)
day. After a hearing, he was just suspended for the fourth
time this year for five (5) more days. His parents have
requested an appeal of this suspension to the
Superintendent or her designee and the school district has
refused, saying they don’t grant Superintendent Appeal
hearings for suspensions of fewer than ten days.
 Okay to do under MASS. GEN. LAWS ch. 71, § 37H3/4?
Answer 10: No
 MASS. GEN. LAWS ch. 71, § 37H3/4(d) states that a student who is
suspended for more than 10 days cumulatively for multiple infractions in a
school year shall receive written notification of the right to appeal.
 The student’s parent/guardian shall receive written notification as well.
 A student suspended for more than 10 school days shall have the right to
appeal to the superintendent.
 A student or his parent or guardian shall notify the superintendent in writing of
a request for an appeal not later than 5 calendar days following the effective
date of the suspension or expulsion.
 Extension of up to 7 calendar days
 The superintendent or a designee shall hold a hearing with the student and
the parent/guardian of the student within 3 school days of the student’s
request for an appeal.
Question 11: Yes or No?
 Charles, a tenth grader, gets into an argument with his
English teacher during his first period class and begins
to get more and more angry. He knocks everything off
the teachers desk and storms out of the room. The
principal finds Charles in the hall and tells him to go
home, he is being suspended for the day and not to
come back to school without his parent.
 Okay to do under MASS. GEN. LAWS ch. 71, § 37H3/4?
Answer 11: No
 This is not a MASS. GEN. LAWS ch. 71, § 37H or MASS. GEN.
LAWS ch. 71, § 37H1/2 offense, so MASS. GEN. LAWS ch. 71, §
37H3/4 applies.
 MASS. GEN. LAWS ch. 71, § 37H3/4(b) states, “[a]ny principal,
headmaster, superintendent or other person action as a
decision-maker at a student meeting or hearing, when deciding
the consequences for the student, shall exercise discretion;
consider ways to re-engage the student in the learning process;
and avoid using expulsion as a consequence until other
remedies and consequences have been employed.”
 There is nothing in MASS. GEN. LAWS ch. 71, § 37H3/4 that allows
for an “emergency” suspension.
 This is one place where the Chapter 222 regulations matter!
Question 12: Yes or No?
 Joshua is facing a suspension for over ten days for being
seriously disruptive in a repeated manner, making excessive
noise, failing to listen to teachers, and interfering with the
learning of others.
 The school has sent home a written notice in English and
Spanish to the address on file. The notice lists the charges,
explains the basis for the charges and the date of the
hearing and the parents’ rights.
 On the date of the hearing, the parent does not show up.
The principal holds the hearing anyway and suspends the
student for 30 days.
 Okay to do under MASS. GEN. LAWS ch. 71, § 37H3/4?
Answer 12: Yes and No
 This is a MASS. GEN. LAWS ch. 71, § 37H3/4 offense, so
MASS. GEN. LAWS ch. 71, § 37H3/4 applies.
 MASS. GEN. LAWS ch. 71, § 37H3/4(a) provides that a
principal shall ensure that parents/guardians are
included in the exclusion meeting, but the meeting can
take place without the parent/guardian only if the
principal can document reasonable efforts to include
the parent in the meeting.
 DESE will promulgate regulations for including parents
in student exclusion meetings, pursuant to this
subsection.
Thank You!
 Questions?

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