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Los Angeles COE |  BP  5144.1  Students

Suspension And Expulsion/Due Process   

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The County Board desires to provide students access to educational opportunities in an orderly school environment that protects their safety and security, ensures their welfare and well-being, and promotes their learning and development. The County Board shall adopt rules and regulations setting the standards of behavior expected of LACOE students and the disciplinary processes and procedures for addressing violations of those standards, including suspension and/or expulsion.

(cf. 5131 - Conduct)

(cf. 5131.1 - Bus Conduct)

(cf. 5131.2 - Bullying)

The grounds for suspension and expulsion and the procedures for considering, recommending, and/or implementing suspension and expulsion shall be only those specified in law, in this policy, and in the accompanying administrative regulation.

Except when otherwise permitted by law, a student may be suspended or expelled only when the student's behavior is related to a school activity or school attendance occurring within any LACOE school or another school district, regardless of when it occurs, including, but not limited to, the following: (Education Code 48900(s))

1. While on school grounds

2. While going to or coming from school

3. During the lunch period, whether on or off the school campus

(cf. 5112.5 - Open/Closed Campus)

4. During, while going to, or coming from a school-sponsored activity

LACOE staff shall enforce the rules concerning suspension and expulsion of students fairly, consistently, equally, and in accordance with the LACOE nondiscrimination policies.

(cf. 0410 - Nondiscrimination in LACOE Programs and Activities)

Appropriate Use of Suspension Authority

Except when a student's act violates Education Code 48900(a)-(e), as listed in items #1-5 under "Grounds for Suspension and Expulsion: Grades K-12" of the accompanying administrative regulation, or when the student's presence causes a danger to others, suspension shall be used only when other means of correction have failed to bring about proper conduct. (Education Code 48900.5, 48900.6)

(cf. 1020 - Youth Services)

(cf. 5138 - Conflict Resolution/Peer Mediation)

(cf. 5144 - Discipline)

(cf. 6142.4 - Service Learning/Community Service Classes)

(cf. 6164.2 - Guidance/Counseling Services)

(cf. 6164.5 - Student Success Teams)

A student's parents/guardians shall be notified as soon as possible when there is an escalating pattern of misbehavior that could lead to on-campus or off-campus suspension.

No student may be suspended for disruption or willful defiance, except by a teacher from the student's class for a period suspension pursuant to Education Code 48910. (Education Code 48900)

Students shall not be suspended or expelled for truancy, tardiness, or absenteeism from assigned school activities.

(cf. 5113 - Absences and Excuses)

(cf. 5113.1 - Chronic Absence and Truancy)

On-Campus Suspension

To ensure the proper supervision and ongoing learning of students who are suspended for any of the reasons enumerated in Education Code 48900 and 48900.2, but who pose no imminent danger or threat to anyone at school and for whom expulsion proceedings have not been initiated, the County Superintendent or designee shall establish a supervised suspension classroom program which meets the requirements of law.

Except where a supervised suspension is permitted by law for a student's first offense, supervised suspension shall be imposed only when other means of correction have failed to bring about proper conduct. (Education Code 48900.5)

Authority to Expel

A student may be expelled by an administrative panel.

The County Superintendent, principal, or designee shall recommend expulsion and convene an administrative panel. This panel will act impartially on behalf of the County Superintendent and be comprised of three certificated members who are not directly connected to the incident in question nor assigned to the recommending school.

The administrative panel shall expel any student found to have committed any of the following "mandatory recommendation and mandatory expulsion" acts at school or at a school activity off school grounds: (Education Code 48915)

1. Possessing a firearm which is not an imitation firearm, as verified by a certificated employee, unless the student had obtained prior written permission to possess the item from a certificated school employee, with the principal or designee's concurrence

(cf. 5131.7 - Weapons and Dangerous Instruments)

2. Selling or otherwise furnishing a firearm

3. Brandishing a knife at another person

4. Unlawfully selling a controlled substance listed in Health and Safety Code 11053-11058

5. Committing or attempting to commit a sexual assault as defined in Penal Code 261, 266c, 286, 288, 288a, or 289, or committing a sexual battery as defined in Penal Code 243.4

6. Possessing an explosive as defined in 18 USC 921

For all other violations listed in the accompanying administrative regulation, the County Superintendent, designee, or principal shall have the discretion to recommend expulsion of a student. If expulsion is recommended, an administrative panel shall order the student expelled only if it makes a finding of either or both of the following: (Education Code 48915(b) and (e))

1. That other means of correction are not feasible or have repeatedly failed to bring about proper conduct

2. That due to the nature of the violation, the presence of the student causes a continuing danger to the physical safety of the student or others

A vote to expel a student shall be taken in a public session.

The administrative panel may vote to suspend the enforcement of the expulsion order pursuant to the requirements of law and the accompanying administrative regulation. (Education Code 48917)

No student shall be expelled for disruption or willful defiance. (Education Code 48900)

Due Process

LACOE shall ensure the fair and equitable treatment of students facing suspension and/or expulsion by affording them due process rights under the law. LACOE shall comply with procedures for notices, hearings, and appeals as specified in law and administrative regulation. The student shall be given a notice of the student's right to appeal to the County Board. (Education Code 48911, 48915, 48915.5, 48918)

(cf. 5119 - Students Expelled from Other Districts)

(cf. 5144.2 - Suspension and Expulsion/Due Process (Students with Disabilities))

Appeal

The student or parent/guardian is entitled to file an appeal of the administrative panel decision with the County Board. The appeal must be filed within 30 days of the administrative panel's decision to expel, even if the expulsion order is suspended and the student is placed on probation. (Education Code 48919)

If the student submits a written request for a copy of the written transcripts and supporting documents from LACOE simultaneously with the filing of the notice of appeal with the County Board, LACOE shall provide the student with these documents within 10 school days following the student's written request. (Education Code 48919)

The County Board will hear the appeal of the administrative panel directly, and no additional administrative hearing panel will be used.

The County Board shall utilize the standard of review set forth in Education Code 48922 and BP 5144.3 (Scope of Review).

The decision of the County Board shall be final and binding, as set forth in Education Code 48924 and BP 5144.3 (Final Order of the County Board).

Maintenance and Monitoring of Outcome Data

The County Superintendent or designee shall annually present to the County Board a report of the outcome data which LACOE is required to collect pursuant to Education Code 48900.8 and 48916.1, including the number of students recommended for expulsion, the grounds for each recommended expulsion, the actions taken by the administrative panel, the types of referral made after each expulsion, and the disposition of the students after the expulsion period.

The report shall be disaggregated by school and by numerically significant student subgroups, including, but not limited to, ethnic subgroups, socioeconomically disadvantaged students, English learners, foster youth, and students with disabilities. The report also shall include information about whether and how LACOE is meeting its goals for improving school climate as specified in its local control and accountability plan.

(cf. 0460 - Local Control and Accountability Plan)

Legal Reference:

EDUCATION CODE

212.5 Sexual harassment

233 Hate violence

1981-1981.5 Enrollment of students in community school

17292.5 Program for expelled students

32261 Interagency School Safety Demonstration Act of 1985

35145 Open board meetings

35146 Closed sessions (regarding suspensions)

35291 Rules (for government and discipline of schools)

35291.5 Rules and procedures on school discipline

48645.5 Readmission; contact with juvenile justice system

48660-48666 Community day schools

48853.5 Foster youth

48900-48927 Suspension and expulsion

48950 Speech and other communication

48980 Parental notifications

49073-49079 Privacy of student records

CIVIL CODE

47 Privileged communication

48.8 Defamation liability

CODE OF CIVIL PROCEDURE

1985-1997 Subpoenas; means of production

GOVERNMENT CODE

11455.20 Contempt

54950-54963 Ralph M. Brown Act

HEALTH AND SAFETY CODE

11014.5 Drug paraphernalia

11053-11058 Standards and schedules

LABOR CODE

230.7 Discharge or discrimination against employee for taking time off to appear in school on behalf of a child

PENAL CODE

31 Principal of a crime, defined

240 Assault defined

241.2 Assault fines

242 Battery defined

243.2 Battery on school property

243.4 Sexual battery

245 Assault with deadly weapon

245.6 Hazing

261 Rape defined

266c Unlawful sexual intercourse

286 Sodomy defined

288 Lewd or lascivious acts with child under age 14

288a Oral copulation

289 Penetration of genital or anal openings

417.27 Laser pointers

422.55 Hate crime defined

422.6 Interference with exercise of civil rights

422.7 Aggravating factors for punishment

422.75 Enhanced penalties for hate crimes

626.2 Entry upon campus after written notice of suspension or dismissal without permission

626.9 Gun-Free School Zone Act of 1995

626.10 Dirks, daggers, knives, razors or stun guns

868.5 Supporting person; attendance during testimony of witness

WELFARE AND INSTITUTIONS CODE

729.6 Counseling

UNITED STATES CODE, TITLE 18

921 Definitions, firearm

UNITED STATES CODE, TITLE 20

11432-11435 Education of homeless children and youths

7151 Gun free schools

UNITED STATES CODE, TITLE 42

11432-11435 Education of homeless children and youths

COURT DECISIONS

T.H. v. San Diego Unified School District (2004) 122 Cal. App. 4th 1267

Woodbury v. Dempsey (2003) 108 Cal. App. 4th 421

Board of Education of Sacramento City Unified School District v. Sacramento County Board of Education and Kenneth H., (2001) 85 Cal.App.4th 1321

Garcia v. Los Angeles Board of Education (1991) 123 Cal.App.3d 807

Fremont Union High School District v. Santa Clara County Board (1991) 235 Cal. App. 3d 1182

John A. v. San Bernardino School District (1982) 33 Cal. 3d 301

ATTORNEY GENERAL OPINIONS

84 Ops.Cal.Atty.Gen. 146 (2001)

80 Ops.Cal.Atty.Gen. 348 (1997)

80 Ops.Cal.Atty.Gen. 91 (1997)

80 Ops.Cal.Atty.Gen. 85 (1997)

CSBA PUBLICATIONS

Safe Schools: Strategies for Governing Boards to Ensure Student Success, 2011

U.S. DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION, OFFICE FOR CIVIL RIGHTS PUBLICATIONS

Dear Colleague Letter on the Nondiscriminatory Administration of School Discipline, January 2014

WEB SITES

CSBA: http://www.csba.org

California Attorney General's Office: http://www.caag.state.ca.us

California Department of Education: http://www.cde.ca.gov

U.S. Department of Education, Office for Civil Rights:

http://www.ed.gov/about/offices/list/ocr/docs/crdc-2012-data-summary.pdf

U.S. Department of Education, Office of Safe and Drug-Free Schools: http://www.ed.gov/about/offices/list/osdfs/index.html

Policy LOS ANGELES COUNTY OFFICE OF EDUCATION

adopted: June 16, 2020 Downey, California