Code of Conduct
VICTORIA CROSS PUBLIC SCHOOL
Updated: September, 2023
CODE OF CONDUCT
(Template revised Sept. 2019)
It is the policy of the Upper Grand District School Board to maintain a safe and inclusive learning and teaching environment through the adoption of a Code of Conduct which promotes responsibility, respect, civility and academic excellence, and sets clear standards of behaviour for all members of the school community. The goal is to create a positive school climate where all members of the school community feel safe, included and accepted.
Our school Code of Conduct is based upon the provincial Code of Conduct and the Upper Grand District School Board Code of Conduct (Policy 213), which apply to all members of the school community; students, administrators, staff, parents and guardians, community users, visitors, volunteers, etc. while on all school and board property, school buses, at school-authorized events, and off site at school-sponsored activities.
Student rights include:
- to be treated with dignity and respect
- to be provided with activities that are success oriented and build on individual strengths
- to receive a quality education
Parent rights include:
- to be treated with dignity and respect
- to be heard and to have concerns addressed
- to communicate with the school
Staff rights include:
- to be treated with dignity and respect
- to have a safe working environment
- to expect parents and students to be involved in creating a positive school environment
A) Respect, Civility and Responsible Citizenship
All members of the school community will:
- respect and comply with all applicable federal, provincial and municipal laws
- demonstrate honesty and integrity
- respect differences in people, their ideas and their opinions
- treat one another with dignity and respect at all times, and especially where there is disagreement
- respect and treat others fairly, regardless of age, sex, gender identity, gender expression, sexual orientation, race, colour, place of origin, culture, citizenship, ancestry, origin, religion, creed, family status, marital status, socio-economic status, employment, housing, disability
- respect the rights of others
- show proper care and regard for school property and the property of others
- take appropriate measures to help those in need
- seek school staff assistance, if necessary, to resolve conflict peacefully
- respect all members of the school community, especially persons who are in a position of authority
- respect the needs of others to work in an environment that is conducive to learning and teaching
- not swear at a teacher or at another person in a position of authority
All members of the school community will not:
- engage in bullying behaviours, including cyber bullying
Definition of bullying:
As defined in section 1 of the Education Act, bullying means aggressive and typically repeated behaviour by a pupil where,
- the behaviour is intended by the pupil to have the effect of, or the pupil ought to know that the behaviour would be likely to have the effect of,
- causing harm, fear or distress to another individual, including physical, psychological, social or academic harm, harm to the individual’s reputation or harm to the individual’s property, or
- creating a negative environment at a school for another individual, and
- The behaviour occurs in a context where there is a real or perceived power imbalance between pupil and the individual based on factors such as size, strength, age, intelligence, peer group power, economic status, social status, religion, ethnic origin, sexual orientation, family circumstances, gender, gender identity, gender expression, race, disability or the receipt of special education
- c) Cyber-bullying as defined in section 1 of the Education Act, is bullying by electronic means including,
- a) creating a webpage or a blog in which the creator assumes the identity of another person
- b) impersonating another person as the author of content or messages posted on the internet; and
- c) communicating material electronically to more than one individual or posting material on a website that may be accessed by one or more individuals
- commit sexual assault
- traffic in weapons or illegal drugs
- give alcohol or cannabis to a minor
- commit robbery
- be in possession of any weapon, including firearms
- use any object to threaten or intimidate another person
- cause injury to any person with an object
- be in possession of, or be under the influence of, alcohol, illegal drugs, or cannabis (unless the individual has been authorized to use cannabis for medical purposes)
- provide others with alcohol, illegal drugs, or cannabis (unless the recipient is an individual who has been authorized to use cannabis for medical purposes)
- inflict, or encourage others to inflict, bodily harm on another person
- engage in hate propaganda and other forms of behaviour motivated by bias, prejudice or hate
- commit an act of vandalism that causes extensive damage to school property or to property located on the premises of a school
Students are to be treated with respect and dignity. In return, they must demonstrate respect for themselves, for others, and for the responsibilities of citizenship through acceptable behaviour and adherence to the board and school codes of conduct.
All students will:
- come to school prepared, on time and ready to learn
- show respect for themselves, and for others, and for those in positions of authority
- refrain from bringing anything to school that may compromise the safety of others
- follow the established rules and accept responsibility for their own actions
Under the direction the school board, principals take a leadership role in the daily operation of a school. They provide this leadership by:
- demonstrating care for the school community and a commitment to student achievement and well-being in a safe, inclusive, and accepting learning environment
- holding everyone under their authority accountable for their own behaviour and actions
- empowering students to be positive leaders in their school and community
- communicating regularly and meaningfully with all members of the school’s community
- ensure that a school Code of Conduct, based on the provincial Code of Conduct and board’s Code of Conduct, is developed and communicated annually to the school community
- review the school Code of Conduct at least once every three years, and seek input from school councils, staff, students, parents and guardians, and the school community on the review
Teachers and School Staff
Under the leadership of their principals, teachers and other school staff maintain a positive learning environment and are expected to hold everyone to the highest standard of respectful and responsible behaviour. As role models, teachers and other school staff uphold these high standards when they:
- help students work to fulfill their potential, and develop their sense of self-worth
- empower students to be positive leaders in their classroom, school and community
- communicate regularly and meaningfully with parents and guardians
- maintain consistent and fair standards of behaviour for all students
- demonstrate respect for one another, all students, parents, volunteers, and other members of the school community
- prepare students for the full responsibilities of citizenship
Parents/Caregivers play an important role in the education of their children and can support the efforts of school staff in maintaining a safe, inclusive, accepting, and respectful learning environment for all students. Parents/Caregivers fulfill their role when they:
- demonstrate respect for all members of the school community
- support the efforts of school staff in maintaining a safe and respectful learning environment
- are engaged in their child’s schoolwork and progress
- communicate regularly with their child’s school
- help their child be appropriately dressed and prepared for school
- ensure that their child attends school regularly and on time
- promptly report to the school their child’s absence or late arrival
- become familiar with the provincial Code of Conduct, the board’s Code of Conduct, and the school’s Code of Conduct
- encourage and assist their child in following the board and school codes of conduct
- assist school staff in dealing with disciplinary issues involving their child
Victoria Cross Public School students and staff are expected to be positive, kind, caring role models and leaders. They will show respect, engage collaboratively and take responsibility for their actions.
Overall, Victoria Cross students and staff are expected to use their words and actions to “make this place a better place” each day.
- Students are expected to be ready for learning as they enter the building, including having the needed materials and a positive mindset to do their best each day.
- Students are expected to be in class so that they can participate in learning activities with their peers.
- While in the halls, students will travel to the expected areas (washroom, fountains, office) and return to class as quickly as possible.
- Hallways are not for socializing during learning periods.
- Students should not be touching artwork on walls, bulletin boards or going into other student’s backpacks while in the hall.
Class Time / Assemblies
- Students are expected to be on time.
- Co-operate, participate and collaborate with their peers during class activities.
- Stay in the classroom, unless permission is given to leave, throughout the day
- Ask questions, clarify instructions, complete work and share information with educators that will have a positive impact on learning Complete work to the best of your ability.
- Let the adults know when you need something or if something is preventing you from doing your best.
- Comply with classroom and school routines and expectations.
- Listen to and follow teacher instruction/direction during group activities.
Nutrition Breaks- Eating Portion
- Students are expected to stay in their seats while eating, quietly chatting to their peers near them.
- If students need to leave the room, they are to let the supervisor know PRIOR to leaving the room.
- Snacks are not to be shared – we have life threatening allergies throughout our school.
- Classroom teachers will have shared allergies in their class.
- Technology is not permitted.
- If there is an indoor recess, students are to remain in their rooms and use teacher approved activities.
Nutrition Breaks – Yard Portion
- Play fair and cooperatively.
- Keep food and drinks in the school – not on the yard.
- Stay within the boundaries of our yard.
- When conflicts arise, use positive problem solving techniques and get an adult if you need help.
- Be honest – tell your part and take responsibility for your actions.
- Report any injuries to an adult on duty or to your classroom teacher.
- Use equipment in designated areas (i.e., soccer balls & footballs on the field, basketball on the court, etc.).
- Be inclusive – this is a shared, public space – share and be kind. If you’re not having fun, find something else to do.
- Be aware of the Acceptable Use Policy
- The school has enough devices for all of our students to use in class.
- Technology is used for educational purposes & with teacher direction.
- Students who choose to bring a laptop /chromebook to school may use it in the class for educational purposes & with teacher direction.
- Are not needed at school.
- Students who bring phones to school need to know:
- They are not allowed to be used in hallways, washrooms, on the yard (before school, during indoor or outdoor nutrition breaks).
- Phones can be used in the classroom for educational purposes & with teacher direction & ONLY when school devices are unavailable.
- Teachers will communicate phone expectations for their classes (intermediate and junior teachers have specific expectations for their grade).
- Misuse of phone will result in:
- warnings to child, parent contact by teacher to identify the problem to create a plan and if misuse continues
- parents may have to pick up their child’s phone at the office
- Overall, Victoria Cross students and staff are expected to use their words and actions to “make this place a better place”.
Appropriate dress shall be free of images, logos or language that portray ethnic prejudice, racism, sexism, vulgarity, gang-related markings, obscenities, profanity, hate speech or pornography, or reference alcohol, drugs or related paraphernalia, or other illegal conduct or activities.
Dress code implies a range of approved apparel and/or general dress protocols that are deemed appropriate for students regardless of their race, age, ability, sex, gender identity, gender expression, sexual orientation, ethnicity, religion, cultural observance, socio-economic circumstances, or body type/size.
Please refer to the UGDSB Student Dress Code guidelines.
The police play an essential role in making our schools and communities safer. The police investigate incidents in accordance with the guidelines established in the Police/School Board Protocol.
Community-based service providers are resources that boards can use to deliver prevention or intervention programs. Protocols and collaborative agreements are effective ways of establishing linkages between boards and community-based service providers and of formalizing the relationship between them. These partnerships must respect all applicable collective agreements.
Safe Schools Policy 503 (Student Discipline, Bullying Prevention and Intervention, Suspension and Expulsion) provides direction to the school Code of Conduct in order to support and maintain a positive school climate for all students, staff, and community. The school Code of Conduct supports the use of positive practices, including prevention and early intervention, as well as consequences for inappropriate behaviour. This includes Progressive Discipline, and suspension and expulsion where necessary. Before applying disciplinary measures, the discriminatory and disproportionate impacts of disciplinary decisions on students protected by the Human Rights Code shall be considered.
Progressive Discipline is a whole school approach that makes use of a continuum of prevention programs, interventions, supports, and consequences to promote positive behaviours. In developing a Progressive Discipline approach, preventative practices, corrective and supportive strategies are used to reinforce positive behaviours. These approaches build skills for healthy relationships and promote positive behaviours.
At Victoria Cross PS, we expect that our students will do their best to create an atmosphere that includes respect for others, fair play, demonstrating kindness and care towards others. This includes, but is not limited to: treating other with respect (in the classrooms, on the yard, while using technology, on the bus and when walking home), including “hands off” and not engaging in Harmful Language that is inappropriate and or put downs based on race, sexual orientation, gender, socio-economic background, body type, etc. Using words instead of physical aggression to solve conflicts.
The school will use a range of interventions, supports and consequences that include learning opportunities for reinforcing positive behaviour while helping students to make good choices.
In addressing inappropriate behaviour by students, schools will:
- utilize appropriate and consistent action to address inappropriate behaviours within the practice of Progressive Discipline
- ensure the degree of disciplinary action is in proportion to the severity of the behaviour exhibited, and that a student’s previous history and other relevant factors are taken into account
- provide students with experience using conflict resolution, anger management and communication skills
- document incidents requiring disciplinary measures
- consider mitigating factors
- make contact with parents and guardians of students under the age of eighteen, or students over the age of 18 or those 16 or 17 years old who have withdrawn from parental control (adult students), early in the disciplinary process and involve them in a plan to improve the student’s behaviour until the behaviour is acceptable; and/or
- utilize consequences such as short-term suspension, and respond as required with long-term suspension or expulsion
The application of consequences, supports and interventions are determined by the incident and the individual students involved. Consequences, supports and interventions used include and are not limited to:
Problem-solving discussions, conflict mediation, specific modeling of behaviours, participating in emotional regulation training (i.e., Zones of Regulation), conversations (with in-school staff, parents, or Board staff), positive reinforcement (i.e., verbal praise, sticker charts), recess plans, staff /student check-ins (before or after recess), use of safe spots or safe people or referral to outside organizations.
Consequences: At Victoria Cross Public School could include: :
|Examples of Consequences:
||Examples of Supports/Interventions:
To maintain a safe and effective learning environment, suspensions and expulsions may be imposed not only to deter inappropriate behaviour, but also to remove individuals who pose a threat to the safety and well-being of others. The provincial Code of Conduct specifies that for student actions that do not comply with the provincial Standards of Behaviour, suspension and expulsion may be considered. The board’s Safe Schools Policy (Policy 503) sets out the process for suspension and expulsion. This policy specifies the student actions that may result in the principal imposing a suspension, as well as the student actions that will result in the principal imposing a suspension and considering an expulsion pending an investigation of the incident.
The principal will consider the following mitigating factors when considering the length of a suspension:
- whether the student has the ability to control their behaviour
- whether the student has the ability to understand the foreseeable consequences of their behaviour
- whether the student’s continuing presence in the school does or does not create an unacceptable risk to the safety of any other individual at the school
The principal will also consider the following factors:
- the student’s academic, discipline and personal history
- whether other Progressive Discipline has been attempted with the student, and if so, the Progressive Discipline approach(es) that has/have been attempted and any success or failure
- whether the infraction for which the student might be disciplined was related to any harassment of the student because of race, colour, ethnic origin, place of origin, religion, creed, disability, gender or gender identity, sexual orientation, socio-economic status, citizenship, marital status, age, culture or harassment for any other reason
- the impact of the discipline on the student’s prospects for further education
- the student’s age
Police may be involved, and a suspension may be imposed for one of the following infractions which has occurred on school property, during a school related activity or event, and/or in circumstances where the infraction has an impact on the school climate:
- uttering a threat, either verbal or written, to inflict serious bodily harm on another person
- possessing alcohol or illegal drugs or, unless the student is a medical cannabis user, cannabis
- being under the influence of alcohol or, unless the student is a medical cannabis user, cannabis
- swearing at a teacher or at another person in a position of authority
- committing an act of vandalism that causes extensive damage to school property at the pupil’s school or to property located on the premises of the pupil’s school
- bullying, including cyber bullying
- any activity that contravenes the board’s or school’s Code of Conduct
- committing physical assault on another person that does not require treatment by a medical practitioner
- habitual neglect of duty
- not having an up-to-date medical/immunization record
Police may be involved, and a student will be immediately suspended, an investigation will occur and may lead to a recommendation of expulsion to the board’s Student Discipline Committee for one of the following infractions which has occurred on school property, during a school related activity or event, and/or in circumstances where the infraction has an impact on the school climate:
- possessing a weapon, including a firearm
- using a weapon to cause or to threaten bodily harm to another person
- committing physical assault on another person that causes bodily harm requiring treatment by a medical practitioner
- committing sexual assault
- trafficking in weapons or illegal drugs
- committing robbery
- giving alcohol or cannabis to a minor
- persistent bullying, if the pupil has previously been suspended for bullying, and the pupil’s continuing presence in the school creates an unacceptable risk to the safety of another person
- an activity that is motivated by bias, prejudice or hate based on race, colour, national or ethnic origin, language, religion, sex, age, mental or physical disability, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, or another similar factor
Please review Policy 503 for additional information.