Memphis Street Academy Charter School at

J.P. Jones Middle School

An American Paradigm School

2016-2017 Family Guidebook


2950 Memphis Street

Philadelphia, PA 19134

215.291.4709

Greetings Scholars, Parents and Caretakers of Memphis Street Academy,

It is with great enthusiasm that I welcome you to the 2016-2017 school year. I wanted to express how exciting it is to be the new principal of Memphis Street Academy. We hope that this guidebook will be a valuable resource to help guide your pursuit of school excellence. It is our goal to provide a safe, nurturing, and academically challenging program for all children. We aim to foster a school environment where every student can develop to his/her maximum potential, learn the importance of responsibility and cooperation, develop self-esteem and treat everyone with respect and dignity.

Our staff is truly excited about the transformation happening at Memphis Street Academy and as we begin a new school year please be reminded of our most important work: (1) Reading daily and participation in the 800 Steps Challenge (2) being on time and in school every day, and (3) being prepared, ready to work and taking responsibility for our academic and behavioral growth.

Last year, we experienced many successes, and we are looking forward to a very productive school year. As a staff, we are excited about the progress we have made, and we are committed to continued growth. This year, we will continue to support our scholars through an instructional program that is aligned to the Common Core State Standards and provide interventions for students to assist them in meeting and exceeding proficiency.

Our greatest initiative will be to continue to work together to provide differentiated learning opportunities for each student and inspire and challenge our students with engaging experiences. I am confident, that together, we can make Memphis Street Academy an even better place for our students to learn and grow. In addition to the enhancements to the instructional program, our school culture has been enhanced with school-wide norms along with morning assemblies that promote positive student leadership.

I am committed to working in collaboration with you to continue to develop and grow our scholars. We have so much to be proud of as a staff, family and community.

Sincerely,

Antoinette Powell

Chief Executive Officer

Principal

Table of Contents

MEMPHIS STREET ACADEMY CHARTER SCHOOL6

Inception and Philosophy. 6

The American Paradigm Schools7

MEMPHIS STREET ACADEMY CHARTER SCHOOL PARENT AND SCHOLAR PLEDGE8

Parent pledge.. 8

Memphis Street Academy Scholar’s pledge.. 8

Enrollment. 9

CONTACT INFORMATION9

Parent-Teacher Communication Guidelines9

Formal Versus Informal Communication10

Staff Directory.. 10

Board of Trustees. 10

GENERAL INFORMATION11

Calendar11

Arrival and Dismissal. 12

Dress Code.. 13

CODE OF CONDUCT.. 16

School Disciplinary Approach16

We Pledge To: 16

MEMPHIS STREET ACADEMY CHARTER SCHOOL-WIDE NORMS17

Parent Involvement. 18

Positive Recognition, Redirection, and Reinforcement. 18

Personal Electronic Devices18

Disciplinary accountability19

Lateness Guidelines. 20

Consequences for unexcused lateness20

Attendance Guidelines. 22

Excused or Legal Absences. 22

consequences for illegal or excessive unexcused absences23

GUIDELINES FOR TIER 1 INCIDENTS AND ACCOUNTABILITY– (Teacher Level Intervention). 25

Hierarchy of Accountability: 25

GUIDELINES FOR TIER 2 INCIDENTS AND ACCOUNTABILITY26

Hierarchy of Accountability: 27

GUIDELINES FOR INCIDENTS QUALIFYING FOR EXPULSION28

Terroristic Threats. 28

Tobacco Use.. 29

Drug and Alcohol Policy.. 29

Weapons. 30

Required Expulsion for Weapons Possession Under Act 2630

SUSPENSION HEARINGS AND EXPULSIONS31

Suspensions. 31

Statement of Purpose of Suspensions32

Hearings. 32

Searches and Seizures. 33

Scholars and the Police.. 34

Sportsmanship.. 35

Disruptive Personal Appearance36

Application of Code of Conduct to Off-Campus Activities36

Act 26 (Pennsylvania Law). 37

DEFINITIONS FOR TERMS FOUND WITHIN THE CODE OF CONDUCT38

Recording and Reporting of Behaviors42

Bullying and cyberbullying42

SPECIAL EDUCATION AND RELATED SERVICES. 44

Prior Notice to Parents. 44

Parent Consent. 45

Independent Educational Evaluation45

Surrogate Parents. 46

Annual Notification of Rights Under FERPA46

Child Find Notice to Parents46

BUILDING AND SCHOOL PROCEDURES AND PRACTICES47

Entitlement to a Free and Public Education.. 47

Equal Opportunity and Non-Discrimination47

Expectations for Parent/Guardian/Parenting Adult Conduct as a Partner in Responsibility.. 47

Food Service/Meal Policy.. 48

Closed Campus. 48

Confidentiality48

Inclement Weather and Emergency Closings49

Emergency Drills. 49

Field Trips. 49

Flag Salute and the Pledge of Allegience50

Grievances. 50

Homebound Instruction.. 50

Locks/LOCKERS.. 51

Lost and Found.. 51

Personal Property.. 51

School Nurse.. 52

Return to School After Accident53

Sick Scholar Policy.. 54

Instructional Materials. 54

Transportation.. 54

Visitors. 55

Withdrawals. 55

Memphis Street Academy School Program55

Homework Assignments. 55

Independent Reading.. 56

Fees for Searching, Retrieving, and Copying Records56

Record of Access. 56

Amendment of Records at Parent’s Request. 56

Definitions. 57

Applicable Laws and Regulations57

TITLE I REQUIREMENTS. 58

School-Parent Compact. 58

Parent Involvement Opportunities60

Memphis Street Academy Charter School Highly Qualified Teachers Policy62

Social Networking and Social Media Policy65

MEMPHIS STREET ACADEMY INTERNET ACCEPTABLE USE AGREEMENT 2016-201768

Memphis Street Academy Internet Use Agreement Page 2016-201770

Memphis Street Academy Charter School Textbook Use Agreement 2016-201771

FAMILY GUIDEBOOK COMPACT SIGNATURE PAGE 2016-201772

Memphis Street Academy Charter School (“MSA”) is proud to be a Renaissance School. A Renaissance School is a School District of Philadelphia public school that serves the scholars in the surrounding neighborhood or catchment area. There are three forms of Renaissance Schools: Innovation, Contract, and Charter. Each of these models has unique features, but all forms of Renaissance Schools have been granted greater autonomy in exchange for increased accountability for scholar academic achievement.

In the late spring of 2012, American Paradigm Schools was matched by the District with John Paul Jones Middle School for the School District of Philadelphia’s Renaissance Initiative. This meant that the school’s community voted for American Paradigm Schools to be the nonprofit Educational Management Organization to transform the learning environment into one producing measurable outcomes for scholar success. In July, 2012, John Paul Jones Middle School became the Memphis Street Academy Charter School at J.P. Jones Middle School.

A charter school is an independent Local Education Agency with a charter school Board of Trustees to oversee all elements of school curriculum and operations. The relationship between charter schools and the School District shall be in accordance with the Pennsylvania Charter School Law and with the charter agreement between the School District and the charter school’s Board of Directors. In order to adhere to the mission of the Renaissance Schools Initiative and to maintain high levels of accountability, Renaissance charters have requirements for scholar enrollment, scholar achievement, data reporting, grade configuration, facilities, and inclusion of the Renaissance Schools charter school in the School Annual Report and other School District accountability systems.

The mission of MSA is to enhance, support and promote the critical thinking and the problem solving skills of its school-age learners as they master and exceed Pennsylvania and national education standards.

MSA’s Board of Trustees believes that all scholars are capable of learning, given the right tools, environment, family and community support, and motivation. As a result, MSA’s scholars will be successful learners. Also through innovation, MSA will transform the learning environment for its scholars grades 5 through 8 -- who not only reside in the catchment area of the school, but who also comprise a diverse scholar body from all over the City of Philadelphia, and from all ethnic, religious, and cultural backgrounds. MSA additionally will transform the property at 2950 Memphis Street into a community hub which serves as a gathering place for all in the community. Besides offering an outstanding education to its middle school scholars, MSA will offer adult opportunities in literacy, GED, and job-readiness skills training.

MSA has instituted Developmental Studies Center’s (DSC) Caring School Community model, which is a well-researched program designed to promote fairness, personal responsibility, kindness, and helpfulness throughout the school community. Teachers use several means to deepen scholars' thinking and build community. Class meetings are a time to team-build, collectively make decisions, and check in with scholars about how they are feeling and how the class is doing in creating a caring community. These meetings are an excellent way to involve scholars in the thought process of how they wish to be treated and how they want to treat others. Some activities are also designed to let scholars get to know each other better, thereby teaching an appreciation for differences and an awareness of the ways in which they are similar. Teachers use cooperative structures to encourage partner and group work and discussion amongst scholars. At MSA, we value the knowledge and experience that scholars bring with them to school. Therefore, we provide opportunities for scholars to learn from each other in the classroom.

According to DSC research, the program has several benefits. In a caring and safe environment, scholars are more likely to enjoy school and learning activities, have trusting relationships with teachers, and make better decisions regarding issues such as drugs or tobacco use in the middle school years. These benefits show why we have chosen to implement the Caring School Community model at our school. Scholars who have participated in the program have improved their abilities to listen to each other, agree or disagree respectfully, and discuss issues and feelings. These scholars have taken ownership for the type of atmosphere that was created in their schools.

Memphis Street Academy Charter School takes pride in being a member of the No Excuses University Network, which promotes college readiness to all scholars. This means that every scholar deserves the opportunity to be educated in a way that prepares them for college if they choose to attend. We ask that a commitment be made by all parents, staff members, and scholars to do whatever it takes to be successful in school. We know that our scholars are capable of being great learners and we want them to have all of the opportunities that a college education will afford. Educators at No Excuses Universities believe they have the power to influence every scholar to be academically successful, even those who are considered to be at risk. We ask parents and parenting adults to make a pledge to help us help our children succeed.

Memphis Street Academy Charter School Is…

· A caring school community where children experience a “democratic-values” approach to learning. This means being inclusive, respecting differences, caring about fellow scholars, and being intrinsically motivated to do the right thing.

· A place to experience diversity in neighborhood, as well as music, art, and a variety of physical and social activities every day.

· A place where children can develop their ability to problem solve and collaborate.

· A place where children can become confident learners.

The mission of American Paradigm Schools (APS) is to establish educational excellence by founding and managing collaborative school communities that eliminate the achievement gap for America’s children. Founded on July 1, 2011 in Philadelphia, APS has grown to include four “sister” schools: First Philadelphia Preparatory Charter School, Tacony Academy Charter School, General David B. Birney Charter School and Memphis Street Academy Charter School.

APS staff members are a collection of experienced educators who are dedicated to facilitating excellence for member schools by providing services in professional development, networking, budgeting, grant-writing, curriculum supports, research and data systems, family and community involvement, and leadership training and mentorship.

Parent pledge

I understand that my scholar’s education today is essential for their success in life. This experience will support them to become successful and productive individuals. It will also prepare them for college and a vocation. Because of this I am committed to the following requirements:

Ensuring my scholar attends school every day and on time unless they are ill.

Ensuring my scholar has all of the resources and materials necessary to be successful.

Communicating with my scholar’s teachers on a regular basis.

Encouraging my scholar in all of their academic interests and ventures both in and outside of school.

Taking thirty minutes each day to ensure my scholar is reading.

Setting academic and parenting goals for myself to help my scholar achieve their own goals.

Supporting the Memphis Street Academy Charter School Norms.

Ensuring that my scholar is in uniform.

Abiding by the Parent Codes of Conduct, contained in this Guidebook.

Memphis Street Academy Scholar’s pledge

I am a Memphis Street Academy Scholar.

The great things I do today will shape tomorrow.

I will aim high, dream big, and live well.

I will care for my schoolmates and teachers.

I will learn, grow, and academically excel.

I am a Memphis Street Academy Scholar!

Unless an eligible scholar is a resident in the school’s catchment area who is entitled to enroll at MSA for grades 5-8, enrollment for other scholars residing in the Commonwealth is handled according to a wait list system. Scholars will be admitted without regard for sex, race, ethnicity, religion, income, or disability. Any scholar meeting the admission criteria as listed below will be considered without prejudice. Preference will be given to in-coming 5th grade siblings of currently-enrolled scholars.

The following criteria must be met for scholar admission:

· The family must provide proof of birth, immunizations and proof of residency in the City of Philadelphia.

· Additional paperwork that will be helpful to determine programming for your child many be requested other paperwork deemed necessary may be asked for at the time of admission.

Parent-Teacher Communication Guidelines

At Memphis Street Academy Charter School, we work to maintain open lines of communication with families. Due to our intense focus on instruction our instructional staff members are not always able to answer phone calls and emails during the school day. Teachers and staff will make every effort to respond to your communications within two business days via phone call or school issued email accounts only. We will respond to your communication within two school days. Sometimes, depending on the nature of your communication, our response will be a receipt statement letting you know we received your communication and are working to get a complete answer to your request. If you do not receive a response within this timeframe, please contact your scholar’s Team Leader.

In the case of an EMERGENCY call (215) 291-4709 (extension 0) and ask for immediate help!

Informal Communication

Formal Communication

When you need to communicate everyday concerns such as:

· A field trip question

· A lost uniform item

· A homework question

For informal communication it is appropriate to send an email, write a note, leave a phone message at the front desk. Email communication is preferred and should only be through the staff member’s school issued email account.

When you need to communicate a more serious ongoing concern such as:

· Academic concern

· Attendance concern

· Behavioral concern (including bullying)

· Health issues and concerns

· Safety Concern

For formal communication it is best to schedule a formal meeting. It is appropriate to do this by sending an email, writing a note, or calling and leaving a message at the front desk for the teacher. If a teacher does not respond, please contact your scholar’s Team Leader.

Staff Directory

Please see the school webpage for a full directory of Memphis Street Academy Staff Members. The school website address is

http://www.ap-schools.org/memphisstreetacademy/

The Memphis Street Academy community is invited to attend meetings of the Board of Trustees. These meetings will take place at the locations and times listed below. Each meeting will include time for comments and questions from the community.

Times quoted below are subject to special agendas which may take longer than noted. The public is urged to arrive for the time posted however, may need to wait. Please check the website for up to date meeting information.

Date

Time

Location

September 14

6:00PM

Memphis Street Academy Charter School (2950 Memphis Street)

November 9

6:00PM

Memphis Street Academy Charter School (2950 Memphis Street)

January 11

6:00PM

Memphis Street Academy Charter School (2950 Memphis Street)

March 8

6:00PM

Memphis Street Academy Charter School (2950 Memphis Street)

April 11

6:00PM

Memphis Street Academy Charter School (2950 Memphis Street)

May 10

6:00PM

Memphis Street Academy Charter School (2950 Memphis Street)

June 14

6:00PM

Memphis Street Academy Charter School (2950 Memphis Street)

  • Every Friday is a 1:00 p.m. dismissal for staff professional development.
  • This school calendar may change at any given time due to snow days or any emergencies that may not be foreseen. You will be notified of any school changes that occur.
  • The school closing number is: 1383
  • PSSA test dates are scheduled from April 3-7 and April 24-28. Please make every effort to have your scholar present on these dates.

August 29, 2016

First Day of School!

January 3, 2017

School Closed – Professional Development

September 2, 2016

1:00 dismissal for scholars

January 16, 2017

School Closed-Dr. Martin Luther King Day

September 5, 2016

School Closed-Labor Day

February 17, 2017

School Closed –Professional Development

October 10, 2016

School Closed- Columbus Day

February 20, 2017

School Closed-President’s Day

October 11, 2016

School Closed- Professional Development

April 3-7, 2017

PSSA Testing ELA

October 12, 2016

School Closed- Yom Kippur

April 12-17, 2017

School Closed-Spring Break

November 8, 2016

School Closed- Election Day

April 24-28, 2017

PSSA Testing Mathematics

November 11, 2016

School Closed- Veteran’s Day

May 1-5, 2017

PSSA Testing Science

November 23-25, 2016

School Closed- Thanksgiving Holiday

May 16, 2017

School Closed-Memorial Day

December 2, 2016

School Closed- Professional Development

June 14, 2017

Last Day for Scholars

December 23-30

School Closed- Winter Recess

June 16, 2017

Last Day for Staff

January 2, 2017

School Closed- New Year’s Day Observed

 

Arrival and Dismissal

Arrival:

Scholars should not report to school prior to 7:45 am. Staff members are not on site until this time.

Scholars are invited to attend our free breakfast program at 7:45 am in Cafeteria “A”. Scholars will enter into Cafeteria “A” from the schoolyard.

All scholars should be in the school yard by 8:00 am and ready to enter the building to meet Team Leaders for grade level morning assemblies. Scholars may not bring gum, snacks, beverages, or any other food items into the school yard or into the school building. Scholars who do not adhere to this policy will be held accountable by the grade level Team Leader. Memphis Street Academy provides a free breakfast and lunch program that meets nutritional guidelines. In the event that your scholar has a medical condition that requires dietary accommodations please see the school nurse to make these arrangements. (Additional information regarding our food policy is provided in the Breakfast/Lunch section)

At 7:45 scholars will be permitted to enter the building and required to report to their grade level assembly sites.

Assembly sites:

5th grade – Gym A

6th grade – Gym B

7th and 8th grade Auditorium

Grade level assemblies begin promptly at 8:00 am. Any scholar who does not report to their grade level assembly on time will be marked late for the day and will be held accountable by the grade level Team Leader.

Dismissal:

Scholars will be dismissed into the school yard on a staggered dismissal schedule. The dismissal time frame ranges from 3:00-3:15 with younger grades being dismissed first. All scholars who are attending after school clubs should report to Cafeteria “B” at 3:15 pm to meet their club teachers. Scholars who are attending clubs may not leave the schoolyard at dismissal time.

The dismissal time for scholars who attend after school clubs is at 4:30pm. All club scholars will be dismissed through the school yard.

Dress Code

A neat, clean and professional image reduces distractions, promotes learning and creates a sense of comradery between all Memphis Street Academy Charter School scholars. We ask all families to adhere to the following guidelines:

A scholar will always be neat, clean, and well groomed. All parts of the uniform must be clean, pressed, and in good repair.

Ties, gym uniforms, plaid skirts, and blazers must be purchased from Cramer’s. Blazers will be mandatory beginning on November 1, 2016. Last day for blazers will be May 8, 2017

White button down dress shirts, belts, and shoes (black shoes are preferred) may be purchased from other retailers.

No shirts may be visible under the school shirts. This includes the neckline and arms.

No shorts, leggings, or pants may be visible under the skirt.

All shirts and blouses are to be tucked in the pants or skirts.

Pants are to be secured at the waist with a belt.

Clothing should fit the scholar and may not be oversized.

The school patch must be affixed to the left breast of the blazer.

Scholars who do not wear the proper gym uniform will not participate in gym and will receive a failing grade for the day.

Scholars may not wear any visible jewelry other than stud earrings or small hoops (more than 2 inches in diameter).

Girls’ skirts must come to no less than two inches from the knee, and must not be so tight so as to be deemed inappropriate by school administration.

Shoes with inappropriate heels, any type of boots, or sandals are prohibited.

BOYS * = must be purchased from Cramers

GIRLS * = must be purchased from Cramers

*School plaid tie (5th and 6th grade boys); blue/orange striped tie (7th and 8th grade boys). All school ties must be purchased at Cramers)

Navy blue blazer with school patch (mandatory beginning November 1, 2016).

Tan khaki pants (no cargo or work pants)

Black shoes are preferred. Boots and sandals are not permitted

Belt

Socks must be worn

*Solid orange tie (5th and 6th grade girls); solid navy blue tie (7th and 8th grade girls) (all school ties must be purchased at Cramers)

*Navy blue blazer with school patch;school plaid skirt (must be purchased at Cramers)

Shoes must be closed toe; boots and sandals are not permitted. (black shoes are preferred)

Socks, stockings, or tights must be worn

GYM UNIFORM (BOYS & GIRLS) (Entire gym uniforms must be purchased at Cramers)

*Navy blue school sweatpants (school name required) *Gray school gym t-shirt (school name required)

*Navy blue school sweatshirt (school name required)

*Gym Shorts (during warm-weather months only scholars may substitute shorts for sweatpants; school name required)

Location:

CRAMERS UNIFORMS
4533 Frankford Avenue

Philadelphia, PA 19124

(215)-743-0750

Directions: From Route 95 (exit 27, Bridge St./Harbison Ave.) Drive North on Bridge St. toward James St. Turn left onto Torresdale Ave. Turn right onto Kinsey St. Turn right onto Frankford Ave.

From Route 1: Turn Southeast onto Pratt St. toward Castor Ave. Make slight right onto Oxford Ave. Turn right onto Frankford Ave.

All scholars should come to school with neatly groomed uniforms and hair styles. No oversized jewelry is permitted. No hats or head coverings are permitted to be worn in school except for religious reasons.

Uniform Violations

Any time a scholar is not in compliance with All aspects of the school uniform, he or she will be in violation of our policy. It is our policy that all scholars will wear the full school uniform so that we may maintain order and discipline. Scholars who disregard this policy will be held accountable. Please note: We will work with families to ensure all scholars have the proper uniform; however, it is the responsibility of the family to ensure uniform compliance.

Tattoos, slogans or advertising on clothing, jewelry, buttons, and/or accessories which, in the determination of School Administration, are lewd, vulgar, profane or plainly offensive, and which by their controversial, discriminatory, profane, and/or obscene nature disrupt the educational setting, are prohibited as violating our Uniform Policy. See also DISRUPTIVE PERSONAL APPEARANCE.

Please be mindful of our uniform policy, as an infraction will lead to disciplinary action as a violation of the school’s dress code.

Dress Down

The opportunity to dress down is a privilege at Memphis Street Academy. A scholar will always be neat, clean, and well-groomed on dress down days. Appropriate attire for scholars is the expectation.

· Ripped jeans, tank-tops, belly shirts, high heels, yoga pants, gang related colors, tattoos, slogans or advertising on clothing, jewelry, buttons, and/or accessories which, in the determination of School Administration, are lewd, vulgar, profane or plainly offensive, and which by their controversial, discriminatory, profane, and/or obscene nature disrupt the educational setting, are prohibited.

· Shorts and Skirts must be knee length, and Shirts must fall below the waist line.

· Scholars who disregard this policy will be held accountable.

We believe that all children are capable of achieving high levels of success. A scholar is most successful when cooperative strategies are implemented between school and home. Parents and families are an integral part of the learning process and a scholar’s success.

We believe that a safe and nurturing environment is essential to scholar learning. All members of the school community deserve to be treated with dignity and respect. We support all scholars regardless of race, ethnicity, gender, class, sexual orientation or religious beliefs. We believe that all scholars have unique qualities that contribute to a positive learning environment.

WE BELIEVE IN YOUR SUCCESS!

We promise to respect and trust you.

We vow to prepare you for college, career and beyond.

We care about your future.

You are important to our Caring School Community.

support scholars by giving them proper tools to ensure academic, social and emotional development

prepare scholars for high school, college and career readiness

work cooperatively with scholars and families to ensure an optimal learning environment for all scholars

build relationships through a variety of activities that encourage trust and a focus on community

uphold the school wide norms that support academic achievement and positive social conduct

As scholars of a Renaissance School, all scholars of MSA are expected to abide by both the MSA’s Expectations for Student Behavior and the School District of Philadelphia’s Code of Student Conduct. The School District of Philadelphia’s Code of Conduct can be located at http://www.phila.k12.pa.us/offices/administration/policies/CodeofConduct.pdf.

Any failure to adhere to any particular code of conduct or disciplinary policy or procedure of the District in this Family Guidebook shall not excuse the behavior in question, or absolve the scholar from appropriate consequences in accordance with District policy. In the event that culpability is established after an investigation and hearing before the Disciplinary Committee of the Board of Trustees a long-term suspension or expulsion may be warranted.

All scholars are responsible for upholding our school-wide norms. If a scholar does not comply with the Norms he/she will be expected to discuss and solve the situation with the help of a supervising adult. Depending on the severity of the infraction, the scholar may also serve a logical consequence. (Please see Tier 1 & Tier 2 Infractions Section of Code of Conduct).

Campus Norms

1. At Memphis Street Academy Charter School, we wear our proper uniform.

2. At Memphis Street Academy Charter School, we show respect to people and property.

3. At Memphis Street Academy Charter School, we arrive prepared and on time every day.

4. At Memphis Street Academy Charter School, we use scholarly language.

5. At Memphis Street Academy Charter School, we obey the quiet signal.

6. At Memphis Street Academy Charter School, we resolve conflict peacefully.

7. At Memphis Street Academy Charter School, we use technology only when permitted.

8. At Memphis Street Academy Charter School, we accept redirection.

9. At Memphis Street Academy Charter School, we help one another.

10. At Memphis Street Academy Charter School education is a core value.

11. At Memphis Street Academy Charter School outside food remains outside.

Hallway and Transition

1. In the hallway and during transition we walk in a single file line on the right side of the hallway.

2. In the hallway and during transition we keep our hats and hoods off our heads.

3. In the hallway and during transition we keep our hands to ourselves.

4. In the hallway we carry a visible hall pass when without a staff member.

5. In the hallway and during transition we only use our own lockers and only at appropriate times.

6. In the hallway and during transition we go directly to our destination.

7. In the hallway and during transition we respect the instruction going on around us.

Classroom Norms

1. In the classroom we quietly raise our hand and wait to be called on before we speak.

2. In the classroom we give our best effort.

3. In the classroom we are prepared and ready to learn.

4. In the classroom we track the speaker.

5. In the classroom we are committed to continuous academic and social growth.

6. In the classroom we remain in assigned areas and on task.

7. In the classroom we follow the directions of the teacher.

Cafeteria Norms

1. In the cafeteria we use inside voices and talk amongst ourselves.

2. In the cafeteria we follow directions.

3. In the cafeteria we clean up after ourselves.

4. In the cafeteria we use good manners.

5. In the cafeteria we practice safety.

6. In the cafeteria we remain seated in our designated area unless otherwise instructed.

7. All food and drink remain in the cafeteria.

Assembly

1. In Assembly we track the speaker.

2. In Assembly we keep our hands and our feet to ourselves.

3. In Assembly we sit where directed.

4. In Assembly we arrive and dismiss in an orderly fashion.

5. In Assembly we talk only when directed.

6. In Assembly we sit up straight with our feet on the floor.

7. In Assembly we acknowledge the speaker/performer appropriately.

8. In Assembly we are engaged.

*This is a list of shared school-wide norms and is not all encompassing of our high expectations for behavior.

The Memphis Street Academy Charter School community consists of teachers, non-teaching staff, administrators, scholars and parents/guardians. Parents and families are an integral part of a scholar’s education. We welcome your participation in the school community. Scholars take pride in a school when they see parents, guardians and teachers working side by side to create an optimal learning environment. We look forward to working with you!!

For a full parent involvement policy, please reference the Title I section of this handbook.

Memphis Street Academy Charter School believes that scholars learn best in a positive and supportive environment. Memphis Street staff will use language that is clear, simple and direct in recognition, redirection and reinforcement; language that is genuine and respectful to all members of the Memphis community, showing faith in an individual’s abilities and potential. At Memphis, scholars celebrate their academic and social achievements throughout the year. Celebrations occur frequently and in various settings. These celebrations may be as a school, a grade, and as a class or as individuals. All scholars will have the privilege of participating in these celebrations by upholding the Memphis Street Academy Charter School Scholar Norms.

Personal electronic devices, including, but not limited to, iPods, iPads, MP3 players, recorders, cameras and electronic games may not be used while on school grounds. Scholars maintain the responsibility for properly securing their property. Personal electronic devices, including earbuds/earphones, which are used on school property will be confiscated and may be retrieved from the Team Leader by a parent or guardian only. If this is a repeated offense, these items will be held by the Team Leader until the end of the school year. Memphis Street Academy Charter School will not assume responsibility for any lost, stolen, or damaged personal electronic devices.

Scholar cell phones may not be seen or heard in the building at any time. This includes texting in any form, at any time. This also includes using the clock, camera, or calculator feature on a cell phone. Cell phones which are seen or heard will be confiscated and may be retrieved from the Team Leader by a parent or guardian only. If this is a repeated offense, the cell phone will be held by the team leader until the end of the school year. Memphis Street Academy Charter School will not assume responsibility for any lost, stolen, or damaged cell phones or any other electronic devices.

No scholar may reveal over the Internet, in any form, the personal information, picture/image of a current or former scholar, administrator, staff member, or parent. In addition, the guidelines extend to any time away from school where social media and the internet is concerned.

Sometimes, personal social media used by scholars, including off-hours use, may result in disruption at school and Memphis Street Academy Charter School may need to get involved. All infractions outlined in the Discipline Code prohibiting negative and bullying communication apply to electronic communication as well.

It is understood that scholars attending school events such as sporting events and other activities may take photos or generate social media regarding the event. Unless prohibited, this use of social media is acceptable. It is important to note, however, that if such social media is used to bully, harass, intimidate or otherwise defame scholars, staff, or the school, MSACS may decide to take action regarding misuse of social media. Please note that scholar use of social media, including but not limited to email, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc., including use of social media while away from school (at home, etc.), is subject to all rules regarding bullying, harassment, etc. See Tier II incidents.

While the following procedures outline Memphis Street Academy Charter School’s process of progressive discipline, Memphis Street Academy Charter School considers the facts of each incident in determining whether suspension, referral to the COSMIC Academy, or expulsion may be an option. Therefore, while Memphis Street Academy Charter School is committed to progressive discipline, the severity of a given action by a scholar may warrant direct consideration of suspension and/or expulsion.

Memphis Street Academy Charter School practices progressive discipline. This is defined as a system of discipline where the consequences may increase upon repeat occurrences. We consider previous behaviors, and when those behaviors are repeated, consequences may build from minor to moderate to severe. The Student Intervention Program (SIP) is utilized to identify supports for scholars as we provide interventions to ensure scholar success.

Memphis Street Academy Charter School has developed the following guidelines to guide the conduct of scholars, school employees/volunteers, and parents/guardians. These guidelines expand upon the Memphis Community Guidelines and will apply at all times that school is in session, during any school program or function, either in the building or at any other location, as well as during arrival and dismissal, and traveling to and from school. This includes travel on school district vehicles, private and public transportation.

The guidelines are informed by the understanding that all individuals in the Memphis Street community will treat others with dignity, respect, kindness, and understanding. This is consistent with Memphis’s mission to enhance, support and promote the critical thinking and the problem solving skills of its school-age learners as they master and exceed Pennsylvania and national education standards.

Lateness Guidelines

Parents are asked to make punctuality a priority. Punctuality is directly linked to a scholar’s success in school. Please remember that Pennsylvania law states that it is the parent’s/guardian’s responsibility to ensure their scholars arrive at school on time.

Lateness will be defined as arriving to school after 8:00am. Please take this into consideration when bringing your scholar to school.

Parents must write a note and/or sign their scholar in at the receptionist desk or main office. Please note that this written explanation does not automatically cause lateness to be recorded as “excused”. Scholars who arrive to school on time, but are late to class, may be given disciplinary consequences.

Attendance records can easily become subject to discrepancies and errors when scholars lateness must be reentered or corrected. Please help us ensure every child maintains an excellent attendance record by making every effort to have your scholar arrive on time each day.

Consequences for unexcused lateness

Scholar is late three (3) times

The Parenting Adult will receive a phone call from the Team Leader.

Scholar is late five (5) times

The Parenting Adult will receive a phone call from the Team Leader.

The Team Leader will send a letter to the Parenting Adult.

The Parenting Adult will be given the opportunity to request a meeting to discuss concerns and possible interventions that may be necessary to ensure the scholar’s punctual arrival.

Scholar is late ten (10) times

The Parenting Adult will receive a phone call from the Team Leader.

The Team Leader will send a letter to the Parenting Adult.

The Parenting Adult will be asked to participate in a meeting with the school administration. During this meeting, a plan will be created to support the scholar in getting to school on time.

After this meeting the scholar may,

· Have weekly check-in’s with the Counselor or Social Worker regarding lateness and attendance.

· Receive disciplinary consequences for lateness, if the scholar is the cause of the late arrival to school.

Scholar is late 15 times

The Parenting Adult will receive a phone call from the Team Leader.

The Team Leader will send a letter to the Parenting Adult.

An administrative review will take place. This may include any or all of the following steps:

The school administration will review all communication between school and home.

The Team Leader will send a letter requesting a meeting with the Parenting Adult.

The Parenting Adult must attend a meeting with the Head of School and Team Leader to discuss the concern.

The disciplinary committee of the Board of Trustees will be notified. This committee may choose from, but is not limited to taking one of the following actions:

Place scholar on probation

Suspend the scholar from extra-curricular school activities

Retain the scholar

Mandate attendance at an inter-session

Refer the scholar to the BRIDGE committee

Refer the case to:

GRADES K-3: Department of Human Services (DHS)

GRADES 4-12: Truancy Court

At the end of the administrative review ,the original plan will be revised to include any further actions taken by the Administration and Board of Trustees.

Scholar is late eighteen (18) times

The Parenting Adult will receive a phone call from the Team Leader.

The Team Leader will send a letter to the Parenting Adult.

The Parenting Adult will be asked to participate in a meeting with the school administration. During this meeting, the plan will be reviewed and revised until a working plan is created.

If the issue persists, school may refer the case to:

GRADES K-3: Department of Human Services (DHS)

GRADES 4-12: Truancy Court

Attendance Guidelines

One element of scholar success is time-on-task. In order to accomplish this, scholars first and foremost must be present and on time each school day. To ensure that scholars receive the most effective education entitled to them, the following attendance policy is in place.

  • If a scholar will be absent, his/her Parenting Adult is to call the school (215-291-4709) before 8:00 am. The parent is to give the scholar’s name, grade and reason for absence. This information may be left on the answering machine.
  • The parent/guardian will discuss any work missed during this absence with the teacher. The scholar will be expected to make up this work according to the teacher’s make-up work policy.
  • The scholar is required to present a valid note from his/her parenting adult upon his/her return to school, though in no event later than three (3) days after returning to school. Failure to do so will result in an unexcused absence.
  • Acceptable excuse notes must include the scholar’s name, grade, dates of absence, reason for absence, and the signature of the scholar’s Parenting Adult. Failure to submit an excuse note will result in an unexcused absence.
  • If a scholar is absent for more than three (3) days, he/she must return to school with a note from a doctor, as well as a note from his/her Parenting Adult.

Memphis Street Academy reserves the right to code an absence as unexcused if the absence is not due to illness, death in the family, required court attendance, quarantine, religious holidays, or authorized school activities. Official documentation should be submitted with the excuse note.

Excused or Legal Absences

The following are state-approved “excused absences” and, therefore, are the only conditions that Lindley Academy recognizes as reasonable causes for absence from school:

· ILLNESS -- Upon written parental request, a scholar may be excused during school hours for the purpose of obtaining professional health care or therapy service only if the following requirements are met:

1. The health or therapeutic services are to be rendered by Commonwealth licensed practitioners;

2. It is not practical or possible for the scholar to receive the services outside of school hours; and

3. The time of necessary absence from school involves a minimum of interference with the scholar’s regular program of studies.

· QUARANTINE

· RECOVERY FROM AN ACCIDENT

· DEATH OF A FAMILY MEMBER -- In the event that a scholar experiences a death in the family, the scholar’s Parenting Adult should be asked to contact the school to verify the reason for the scholar’s absence. School Administration will work with the family to ensure a reasonable return to school and assist the family, if necessary, in finding support for the scholar in dealing with the death.

· COURT APPEARANCE

· EDUCATIONAL TOURS/TRIPS with prior approval from school administration.

· OBSERVANCE OF BOARD OF TRUSTEES-APPROVED RELIGIOUS HOLIDAYS AND ACTIVITIES -- Upon written request by Parenting Adult, scholars may be excused from school for religious holidays observed by bona fide religious groups and to attend classes for religious instruction pursuant to Section 1546 of the Public School Code of 1949 (24 P. S. § 15-1546). Excusal for religious instruction shall be limited to a total of not more than 36 hours per school year.

· OUT-OF-SCHOOL SUSPENSIONS -- A scholar who is suspended is absent but counted as an excused absence for
reporting purposes.

All other absences are classified as unexcused. Long-term absences for legitimate reasons will be handled on a case-by-case basis.
 The School Administration reserves the right to determine the validity of all excuse notes.

Unexcused or Illegal Absences

The following conditions will be considered by Lindley Academy to be illegal, in which case the absence will be permanently recorded as unexcused:

· No note from a Parenting Adult is received by Lindley Academy explaining the absence within three (3) days of returning to school.

· Absence due to loss of bus privilege.

· Lack of proper immunizations or waiver after the first day of school.

· Other reasons not listed as "Excused."

Three (3) or more Consecutive Absences

Scholar will not be admitted into class without a legal notice of unexcused absence such as a medical doctor’s note or a note indicating serious incident such as a funeral or accident.

Three (3) Unexcused Absences

The Parenting Adult will receive a phone call from the Team Leader.

A documented file will be kept in the Team Leader’s office to ensure the scholar is in compliance with Pennsylvania’s compulsory education laws.

Five (5) Unexcused Absences

(approximately 35 hours of instruction)

Parenting Adult will receive a phone call from the Team Leader.

The Team Leader will send written notification of the unexcused absences and coordinate a meeting with the Parenting Adult. The purpose of the meeting will be to address the truancy and develop a Truancy Elimination Plan.

A documented file will be kept in the Team Leader’s office to ensure the scholar is in compliance with Pennsylvania’s compulsory education laws.

Ten (10) Unexcused Absences

(approximately 70 hours of instruction)

An administrative review will take place. This may include any or all of the following steps:

The school administration will review all communication between school and home

The Parenting Adult will receive a phone call and letter from the Team Leader.

The Parenting Adult must attend a meeting with the CEO/Principal and Team Leader to investigate the reasons for the excessive absences and to review and revise the Truancy Elimination Plan.

The disciplinary committee of the Board of Trustees will be notified. This committee may decide to:

· Place the scholar on probation

· Suspend the scholar from extra-curricular school activities

· Retain the scholar

· Refer the scholar to the BRIDGE committee

· Refer the case to:

GRADES K-3: Department of Human Services (DHS)

GRADES 4-12: Truancy Court

At the end of the administrative review, the original plan will be revised to include any further actions taken by the Administration and Board of Trustees.

The Parenting Adult will receive oral and written notification and will be required to appear before the Board of Trustees.

10 Unexcused, consecutive days

Any scholar who has, at any time in the school term, been absent from school for ten (10) consecutive days, may thereafter be removed from the active roll and must return to his/her neighborhood school unless one of the following incidents occurs:

· The school has been provided with evidence that the absence may be legally excused; or

· Compulsory attendance prosecution has been or is being pursued.

Eighteen (18) Unexcused Absences

(approximately 10% of the school year)

The school will issue to the scholar's Parenting Adult a notice of "chronic truancy" for eighteen (18) unexcused absences from compulsory school attendance, with additional report to the School District of Philadelphia for possible prosecution of "chronic truancy" in Truancy Court (4-12) or referral to the Department of Human Services for prevention services (K-3).

The scholar and his/her Parenting Adult will be required to meet with the School Administration to review and/or revise the Truancy Elimination Plan.

Consistent with the attendance policy governing school attendance in the School District of Philadelphia, excessive infractions of the policy requiring the attendance of enrolled scholars may constitute misconduct and may result in progressive disciplinary action. This may include any or all of the following:

· Placing the scholar on probation,

· Suspending the scholar from extra-curricular school activities,

· Mandating attendance at an inter-session, Saturday school, detention or other additional session(s),

· Possible Tier 2 consequences except those causing more missed days such as out-of-school suspension or expulsion), or

Retaining the scholar.

GUIDELINES FOR TIER 1 INCIDENTS AND ACCOUNTABILITY– (Teacher Level Intervention)

The table below outlines the possible consequences for various scholar behaviors. Examples of inappropriate behavior include, but are not limited to, those listed in the left-hand column. The right hand column lists the possible consequences, all of which may apply to any of the listed behaviors.

Behavior

Possible Accountability

(More than one consequence may be assigned)

Damage of Property

Disrespectful tone and/or body language toward school employee

Dress Code violation

Eating gum, candy, seeds

Hurtful word/action

Inappropriate displays of affection

Misuse of technology

Not following directions

Play fighting

Scholar arguments

Unexcused lateness to class

Insubordination

Off-task behaviors

Non-compliance with homework

The following may apply to ALL behaviors listed in the column to the left:

  • Scholar may be assigned a reflective activity.
  • Scholar status review may occur.
  • Scholar may discuss and practice expected behavior with teacher and/or peers.
  • Mediation may occur between all participants. This will include a chance to “fix” relationships or objects.
  • Teacher may contact parent by phone, note, or by e-mail.
  • Scholar may lose a privilege (field trip, class activity, etc.).
  • Scholar may be given an assignment to be done in school or at home.
  • Parent meeting may be requested.
  • Scholar may be assigned a daily behavior log.
  • Scholar may be given in-school community service to “fix” relationships or objects.
  • Scholar may be assigned lunch or after school detention.
  • Scholar may be expected to discuss the redirection and norms violation during assembly.

Hierarchy of Accountability:

  • If the scholar displays the same behavior for the third time, the scholar consequence will likely move to the next level of severity and a parent meeting will be required.
    • For example:
      • If a scholar has been assigned two after school detentions, a Saturday Detention may be assigned.
  • If a scholar has repeat Tier I infractions, a Behavior Success Plan may be implemented

The table below outlines the possible consequences for various scholar behaviors. Examples of inappropriate behavior include, but are not limited to, those listed in the left-hand column. The right hand column lists the possible consequences, all of which may apply to any of the listed behaviors.

Behavior

Possible Accountability

(More than one consequence may be assigned)

Inappropriate Language / Profanity

Use of Racial / Gender Slurs / Possession of Signs of Hate Groups

Destruction of School Property

Jeopardizing the Safety of Others

Bullying, Harassing, Cyber Bullying

Inappropriate use of Technology / Cell Phone

Inappropriate Touching

Inappropriate Act or Gesture

Starting or Spreading Rumors

Disrespect or Defiance of Authority

Refusal to Comply with Directions

Out of Assigned Area / Out of Bounds

Plagiarism / Cheating / Forgery

Physical Assault on Staff or Scholar / Fighting

Disturbing Class / School Procedures

Theft / Possession of Stolen Property

Imitating or Pretending Drug Possession

Verbal Assault / Threats

Extortion

· The scholar may be referred to the Team Leader’s office.

· Scholar may receive a behavior concern packet

· Scholar status review may occur.

· Scholar may be expected to discuss the redirection and norms violation during assembly.

· Scholar may discuss and practice expected behavior with Team Leader and/or teacher.

· Mediation may be held for all participants. This will include a chance to “fix” relationships or objects.

· Parent may be called by the Team Leader.

· Parent may be asked to speak with the scholar at the time of the call to discuss the behavior and expectations.

· A letter, documenting the incident, may be given to the parent. Parent is expected to sign and return the letter on the next school day.

· Scholar may lose a privilege.

· Scholar may be given an assignment to be completed at home.

· Scholar may be given after-school community service.

· Scholar may be assigned after-school detention.

· Scholar may be assigned a lunch detention.

· Scholar may be assigned Saturday detention.

· Scholar may be suspended out of school between 1 and 3 days, not including the day of the incident.

· In the event that a scholar has multiple suspensions from school, upon reinstatement the scholar may be recommended for assignment into COSMIC Academy as a Tier 3 intervention.

Tier 2 Behaviors may also result in additional in-school consequences. These consequences will be unique to each situation and will focus on safety and rebuilding school community. The parent/guardian may be involved in creating meaningful consequences and reparative exercises.

Hierarchy of Accountability:

  • Scholars who have been suspended from school may be entered into Tier 2 of the Student Intervention Program (SIP).
  • Scholars who have had multiple behavioral interventions may be recommended for Tier 3 (Cosmic Academy) of the Student Intervention Program (SIP).
  • Upon being reinstated after a suspension, a scholar may be recommended for admission into the COSMIC Academy.
  • Scholars who struggle to follow school norms after being transitioned into COSMIC Academy may be suspended from school.
  • Scholars who are suspended from the COSMIC Academy may be required to participate in additional Tier 3 interventions such as a referral to an outside agency for behavioral support and/or an educational evaluation by the school psychologist.
  • Scholars who continue to display behavioral concerns after all interventions have been attempted may be scheduled for a hearing in front of the disciplinary committee.
  • Pending the outcome of the disciplinary hearing, a recommendation for expulsion from Memphis Street Academy Charter School may be made to the Board of Trustees.
  • Memphis Street Academy Charter School will consider the facts of each case in determining whether expulsion of a scholar should be an option.

GUIDELINES FOR INCIDENTS QUALIFYING FOR EXPULSION

When a scholar displays an egregious behavior, including, but not limited to:

Behavior

Accountability

Any criminal conduct as defined by Pennsylvania Law.

Attempting to engage or engaging in any conduct that threatens the health, welfare, or safety of any member of the school community.

Scholar shows signs of impairment.

Scholar is under the influence of drugs or in possession of tobacco or related paraphernalia, e-cigarette or alcohol product.

Possession of over the counter medication, look alike drugs and/or drug paraphernalia

Possession of any weapon, but not limited to, any knife, pocket knife, Swiss army knife, cutting instrument, cutting tool, nunchaku, firearm, bb gun, shotgun, rifle and any other tool, instrument or implement capable of inflicting serious bodily injury (as specified by Act 26 on following pages)

Repeated behaviors as defined under Tier 2 Incidents.

Any item brought or used with the intent to cause harm (as specified by Act 26 on following pages).

Scholar makes terroristic threats that disrupt the daily operation of the school and impose a safety threat.

The following may apply to ALL behaviors listed in the column to the left:

  • Scholar will be escorted to the Team Leader’s office.
  • Scholar and all belongings may be searched in the event of probable cause.
  • Parent/Guardian will be notified immediately.
  • Scholar will be escorted to the nurse’s office for an immediate nursing assessment.

· A letter, documenting the incident, may be given to the parent. Parent is expected to sign and return the letter within five (5) days.

  • Parent/Guardian will be asked to pick their scholar up immediately.
  • Scholar will be suspended from Memphis Street Academy Charter School while a full evidentiary hearing on the expulsion of the scholar can be held before the Board of Trustees.
  • Memphis Street Academy Charter School may call the Department of Human Services (DHS) and/or The Philadelphia Police Department.
  • Only staff members trained in Handle With Care can provide restrictive intervention support to any scholar exhibiting behaviors that threaten the safety of others.

Terroristic Threats

Memphis Street Academy Charter School recognizes the danger that terroristic threats by scholars present to the safety and welfare of scholars, staff and community, even if the result is fear or disruption without physical injury. Therefore, MSA will not tolerate any such conduct by any scholar, which is prohibited. “Terroristic threat” is defined as a threat communicated either directly or indirectly to commit any crime of violence with the intent to terrorize another; to cause evacuation of a building, place of assembly or facility of public transportation; or to otherwise cause serious public inconvenience, or cause terror or serious public inconvenience with reckless disregard of the risk of causing such terror or inconvenience. Any scholar whom MSA determines, after investigation, to have engaged in such conduct, alone or having any part thereof, shall have committed the egregious offense of “terroristic threat.” Such scholar may be recommended for expulsion.

Tobacco Use

MSA recognizes that tobacco use by scholars poses a health and safety hazard which can have serious consequences for both users and nonusers, and the safety and environment of the school. “Tobacco use” includes the use and/or possession of a lighted or unlighted cigarette, cigar, and pipe; other lighted smoking product; smokeless tobacco in any form; and paraphernalia associated with tobacco use such as rolling papers, matches, and lighters. “Tobacco use” by scholars is prohibited at any time in a school building or any property, facility, bus or other vehicle owned, leased or controlled by MSA or by a third-party on behalf of MSA and its scholars. Any scholar whom MSA determines, after investigation, to have committed the serious offense of “tobacco use” will face appropriate disciplinary consequence.

CONTROLLED SUBSTANCES: DRUG AND ALCOHOL ABUSE POLICY

MSA recognizes that the abuse of controlled substances is a serious problem with legal, physical, and social implications for the entire school community. As an educational institution, MSA will strive to eliminate this insidious problem from its Caring School Community, for the safety, health and well-being of all members in general.

For the purposes of this policy, the term, “controlled substance” includes all of the following:

1. Any controlled substance prohibited by federal and state law

2. Any item or substance that is designed or intended to resemble a controlled substance prohibited by this policy, or that is used in a manner likely to induce others to believe the material is a controlled substance

3. Alcoholic beverages

4. Anabolic steroids

5. Drug paraphernalia

6. Any volatile solvents or inhalants, such as but not limited to glue and aerosol products

7. Any substance that when ingested causes a physiological effect that is similar to the effect of a controlled substance as defined by state or federal law, such as but not limited to products containing synthetic cannabinoids

8. Prescription or nonprescription (over-the-counter) medications, except those for which permission for use in school has been granted.

Scholars are prohibited from using, possessing, distributing, selling or being under the influence of any “controlled substance” during school hours, upon school grounds, at a school program or activity, or traveling to/from school. The Police will be notified promptly if a scholar is suspected of unlawfully possessing any “controlled substance” that is prohibited by federal or state law. If any such substance is seized, the suspected contraband will be turned over to the Police for analysis. If MSA determines, after investigation, that a scholar is in possession of a “controlled substance,” is under the influence of a “controlled substance,” did or attempted to use, distribute or sell any “controlled substance” during school hours, upon school grounds, at a school program or activity, or traveling to/from school, then MSA will take corrective disciplinary action for this egregious violation, up to referral for expulsion from MSA.

Weapons

Possession of weapons in the school setting is a threat to the safety of scholars and staff, and is prohibited not only by law.

The term “weapon” shall mean any object, device, or instrument designed as a weapon or capable of threatening or inflicting serious bodily harm or which may be used to inflict self-injury. This definition includes, but is not limited to: any firearm, bb gun, shotgun, or rifle, whether loaded or unloaded; any knife, cutting instrument, or cutting tool; any nunchaku; any chemical agent such as pepper spray or mace; laser pointer; stun gun; incendiary device; any other tool, instrument or object used or intended to be used to inflict serious bodily harm to another. The term “weapon” shall also include any simulated, replica, toy, or look-alike weapon.

Scholars are prohibited from possessing any weapon on the way to or from Memphis Street Academy Charter School, while on school property, while attending any school-sponsored activity, and/or while on any public vehicle providing transportation to school or to a school-sponsored activity, including SEPTA.

A scholar is regarded as in possession of a weapon when the weapon is found on the person of the scholar; in a scholar's designated storage space; or under the scholar's control while on school property, on property being used by the school, at any school function or activity, at any school event held away from the school, or while the scholar is coming to or from school or a school-sponsored activity.

Being in possession of a weapon is not limited to using it or intending to use it. Merely carrying the weapon, keeping it in one's designated storage space, locker, backpack or purse, or even holding it for a friend, is sufficient to be charged with this offense.

Act 26 (24 P.S. Section 13-1317.2) is a Pennsylvania law which requires the expulsion of any scholar who possesses a weapon on school property, at a school function, or going to or from school. The definition of weapon under Act 26 is “any knife, cutting instrument, cutting tool, nunchaku, firearm, shotgun, rifle, and [anything else] capable of inflicting serious bodily injury,” and therefore may include box cutters, pen knives on key chains or other common household items.

Act 26 additionally requires the school to notify the Police upon discovery of any weapon covered by the Act.

Any scholar who violates this weapons policy, which is an egregious offense, will be subject to a referral for expulsion, which constitutes the appropriate disciplinary consequence.

Suspensions

· No scholar may receive a suspension unless the scholar has been informed of the reasons for the suspension and has been given an opportunity to respond before the suspension becomes effective.

· Communication to the parents or guardians shall follow the suspension action taken by the school.

· When the suspension exceeds 3 consecutive school days, an informal hearing with the principal shall be offered to the scholar and the scholar’s parent or guardian within the first 5 school days in accordance with the procedures relating to hearings.

Conditions for Suspension

1. The CEO, Program Director, or Team Leader will meet with the scholar prior to the suspension and discuss the reasons for the suspension. The scholar is to be offered an opportunity to explain the circumstances surrounding the event for which he/she is being suspended.

2. A suspended scholar is to be retained in the school building under supervision until the end of the school day, unless released to parents, guardian, or other responsible adult. Every effort should be made to establish immediate contact with the responsible adult.

3. Scholars are permitted to make up examinations and work missed while under suspension.

Procedure for Suspensions

1. Written notification that the pupil has been suspended is to be forwarded to the parent on the day that suspension is initiated. The notice must contain the following information.

· The reasons for suspension as provided in the Code of Scholar Conduct

· The number of days of suspension

· The reinstatement date of scholar

· The date, time, and place for the parental conference.

2. Parents are to be requested to come to school for a reinstatement conference as a result of a suspension. The purpose of this conference is to discuss ways by which future offenses can be avoided, as well as to discuss behavioral interventions that are available to support scholars. Parents are expected to attend the conference during the scheduled reinstatement date and time. In the event that a parent is unable to keep the appointment, the parents should call the Team Leader to reschedule the reinstatement meeting.

3. Parents are requested to come to the main office to pick up missed schoolwork and assignments. Parents are encouraged to call the main office to coordinate the exchange of schoolwork and assignments.

4. A pupil who fails to return to school on the reinstatement date is to be taken off the suspension list and handled as an absentee. The usual procedures are to be followed to encourage the pupil's return to school.

1. The use of suspension is for the involvement of parents in the remediation of a problem.

2. It offers an opportunity for scholars to reflect on choices and align future behaviors with Memphis Street Academy Charter School norms.

3. It immediately diffuses a situation when the final resolution is not yet assured.

4. It is a forthright display of the dissatisfaction of the school with the behavior of the scholar.

Hearings

Education is a statutory right, and scholars must be afforded all appropriate elements of due process if they are to be excluded from school, whether by suspension or expulsion. In a case involving a possible expulsion, the scholar is entitled to a formal hearing, which is a fundamental element of due process.

Informal Hearings: The purpose of the informal hearing is to enable the scholar to meet with the appropriate school official to explain the circumstances surrounding the event for which the scholar is being suspended or to show why the scholar should not be suspended.

· The informal hearing is held to bring forth all relevant information regarding the event for which the scholar may be suspended and for scholars, their parents or parenting adults, and school officials to discuss ways by which future offenses might be avoided.

· The following due process requirements shall be observed in regard to the informal hearing:

1. Notification of the reasons for the suspension shall be given in writing to the parenting adults and to the scholar.

2. Sufficient notice of the time and place of the informal hearing shall be given.

3. A scholar has the right to speak and produce witnesses on his own behalf.

4. MSA shall offer to hold the informal hearing within the first 5 days of the suspension.

Formal Hearings for Expulsions A formal hearing is required in all expulsion actions. This hearing may be held before the Board of Trustees, a Disciplinary Sub-Committee of the Board, or a qualified hearing examiner appointed by the Board. A majority vote of the entire school Board is required to expel a scholar. The following due process requirements are to be observed with regard to the formal hearing:

1. Notification of the charges shall be sent to the scholar’s parents or parenting adult by certified mail.

2. Sufficient notice of the time and place of the hearing must be given.

3. The hearing shall be held in private unless the scholar or parent requests a public hearing.

4. The scholar has the right to be represented by counsel.

5. The scholar has the right to be presented with the names of witnesses against the scholar, and copies of the statements and affidavits of those witnesses. *

6. The scholar has the right to request that any such witnesses appear in person and answer questions or be cross-examined. *

7. The scholar has the right to testify and present witnesses on his own behalf.

8. A record must be kept of the hearing, either by a stenographer or by tape recorder. The scholar is entitled, at the scholar’s expense, to a copy of the transcript.

9. The proceeding must be held with all reasonable speed.

*If the Administration feels that this would be harmful to the scholars involved, we will require written statements in lieu of appearance.

In the interest of maintaining a safe and orderly learning environment that facilitates scholarship and provides for the health and safety of our scholars, Memphis Street Academy Charter School reserves the right, when necessary, for the CEO, Principal, or his/her designee to conduct a search without a warrant if reasonable grounds exist for suspicion that a scholar has violated or is violating state or federal laws, city codes, or school policies. Such searches shall be made in the presence of the scholar if he/she is available.

Various types of school property including, but not limited to, hall lockers, gymnasium lockers, storage bins, musical instrument lockers and computer terminals (herein referred to collectively as "scholar storage space") are assigned to scholars for their convenience of storage or educational usage. School property remains the property of MSA. School property is not to be construed as belonging to, or for the sole use of the scholar, even though the scholar assumes full responsibility for the security of such property. The school maintains a master passkey, which opens storage facilities as well as combination locks.

To maintain order and discipline at MSA, and to protect the safety and welfare of scholars and staff members, school authorities may conduct a search and may seize any illegal, unauthorized or contraband materials discovered. Therefore, scholars should not expect privacy regarding school property items used or items placed on school property, because school property is subject to search at any time by school officials. School officials may conduct inspections or searches of scholar storage spaces at any time without notice, without consent and without a search warrant.

Law enforcement officers may assist MSA during school-initiated searches. Searches may include the use of dogs or mechanical devices for the discovery of contraband.

A scholar’s person and/or personal effects (i.e., purse, book bag, backpack or athletic bag, computers and other electronic devices) may be searched whenever a school official has reasonable suspicion to believe that the scholar is in possession of illegal or unauthorized material, contraband, or evidence of a crime or evidence of a violation of this Code. The scope of such a search shall be limited to the least intrusive means available. Escalation of the scope or intensity of a search may occur when the seriousness of the infraction or violation and the information supporting the investigation warrant.

When school authorities have exhausted all reasonable alternatives and still have reason to believe that contraband or proceeds of a crime are upon the scholar’s person, police may be called and presented with the facts.

The following is meant as a helpful guide to our Search and Seizure Policy. This is not a conclusive list and should not be regarded as such:

1. Scholar storage spaces, including lockers, desks, and other storage areas, remain in the possession and control of Memphis Street Academy School when they are made available (assigned) for scholar use. Scholars may use storage for the limited purpose of temporarily keeping items needed by the scholar to participate in school instruction and activities only. No other purpose is permitted. Scholars shall expect that storage will be checked by the school from time to time without prior notice to assure that such areas are not being used for any unauthorized purpose. Prohibited items may be removed and held by the school. Searches of school property assigned to a scholar may occur at any time without the scholar’s presence; however, the search should be limited to the scope which is reasonable under the circumstances.

2. Also, with respect to searches of scholar storage spaces, prior to a search, the scholar shall be notified and given an opportunity to be present. However, where school authorities have a reasonable suspicion that the scholar storage space contains materials which pose a threat to the health, welfare and safety of scholars in the school, scholar storage spaces may be searched without prior warning.

3. From time to time, the Principal may set aside a time period during which all scholars shall clean their assigned scholar storage.

4. Searches should be done by the CEO, Principal or his/her designated representative and be witnessed by at least one other staff member.

5. Illegal items (drugs, weapons, etc.) or items prohibited by MSA regulations or reasonably determined to be a threat to the safety of the possessor or others shall be seized.

6. Items used to disrupt or interfere with the educational process shall be removed from the scholar’s possession.

7. Items seized may be returned to the rightful owner or the proper authorities at the discretion of the CEO and/or Principal.

8. A search of the scholar’s person or assigned storage may be conducted by law enforcement officials in accordance with law.

9. Any materials seized in accordance with the search policies as described above may be used as evidence against a scholar in disciplinary proceedings.

Memphis Street Academy Charter School recognizes its responsibility both for the protection of the legal rights of its scholars and for notification to parents and/or parenting adults of matters affecting those rights. Whenever the school has reasonable suspicion that a scholar has committed a criminal act, the Administration will promptly notify the Police.

The CEO and/or Principal shall permit properly identified Police, Court, or law enforcement officers to interview scholars on school premises. When Police request permission to interrogate a scholar at school, the CEO and/or Principal shall make a record of the name(s) of the scholar(s); the name and badge number of the officer; the purpose of the interview; and, the date and time of the interview and so inform parents and/or parenting adults.

Unless instructed otherwise by the Police, whenever a scholar is interrogated within the confines of a school building, the CEO, Principal or his/her representative shall be present throughout the proceedings. A female member of the staff shall be present when female scholars are interviewed.

When the Police request permission to arrest a scholar at school, the CEO and/or Principal shall attempt to inform the scholar's parents. The CEO and/or Principal must also request the arrest warrant and inspect it.

No scholar shall be released to Police authorities without proper warrant, appropriate evidence or written parental permission, except in the event of emergency or for the protection of life or property as determined by the CEO and/or Principal.

Sportsmanship

Memphis Street Academy Charter School believes that athletic competition should be a positive and safe experience for everyone involved, conducted in an environment that cultivates values and ethics, strengthens the community, promotes competition without conflict and enriches the lives of scholar-athletes and all individuals involved. In order to promote core values such as discipline, fairness, responsibility, trustworthiness and citizenship, all participants, including players and spectators, are expected to exhibit good sportsmanship during athletic events and all activities relating to athletic events.

Scholar-Athletes in exhibiting sportsmanship, scholar-athletes shall:

· Understand and follow the rules of the sport;

· Recognize skilled performance of others, regardless of team affiliation;

· Demonstrate respect for teammates, opponents, coaches and officials;

· Respect the judgment of officials and accept their decisions;

· Refrain from antics, taunting opponents, using insulting language or any other negative behavior;

· Be modest when successful and gracious in defeat;

· Recognize that their conduct reflects strongly on their schools; and

· Follow all school Discipline Policy rules pertaining to conduct on school property or during activities that are related to school events.

Spectators attending athletic events shall:

· Realize that the main purpose of the competition is the play of the game and that the role of the spectator is one of support;

· Show positive support to the teams and players;

· Show compassion for injured players, regardless of which team they are on;

· Refrain from angry or abusive language, including heckling, taunting or insulting players, officials, coaches or other spectators;

· Refrain from negative or harmful actions;

· Follow all school Discipline Policy rules pertaining to conduct on school property or during activities that are related to school events.

Disciplinary Accountability

School athletic events are school activities that are part of the educational program. Appropriate behavior by spectators provides a positive model for scholars and contributes to the value and educational purposes of athletic activities. Conversely, negative comments and unsportsmanlike behaviors are damaging to the purposes of athletic activities. School Administration, officials, and coaches have the authority and discretion to remove any scholar-athletes or spectators who do not comply with these rules of sportsmanship. At the discretion of School Administration, any violation of this Policy by any scholar may result in disciplinary consequences consistent with the Discipline Code of Conduct.

Tattoos, slogans or advertising on clothing, jewelry, buttons, and/or accessories which, by their controversial, discriminatory, profane, and/or obscene nature, disrupt the educational setting are prohibited as violating our Uniform Policy.

All displays of lewd, vulgar, profane or plainly offensive messages are banned in school for the purposes of:

1. Promoting safety by reducing potential conflict among scholars;

2. Avoiding disruption, thereby allowing scholars and staff instead to focus on learning and achievement; and

3. Fostering our Caring School Community.

Any tattoo which, in the determination of School Administration, is lewd, vulgar, profane, offensive or otherwise diametric to our Caring School Community culture, must be covered at all times.

A scholar may be subject to discipline for violation(s) of the Code of Scholar Conduct which occur even off school property, or in transit to/from school on the bus or other vehicle, if any of the following circumstances exist:

· The conduct occurs during the time the scholar is traveling to and from school or traveling to and from school-sponsored activities, whether or not via school-furnished transportation.

· The scholar is a member of an extracurricular activity and has been notified that particular off-campus conduct could result in exclusion from such activities.

· Scholar expression, language, or conduct materially and substantially disrupts the operations of the school, or the administration reasonably anticipates that the expression or conduct is likely to materially and substantially disrupt the operations of the school.

· The conduct has a direct nexus to attendance at school or a school-sponsored activity, for example, a transaction conducted outside of school pursuant to an agreement made in school that would violate the Code of Scholar Conduct if conducted in school.

· The conduct involves the theft or vandalism of school property.

· There is otherwise a nexus between the proximity or timing of the conduct in relation to the scholar's attendance at school or school-sponsored activities.

24 P.S. § 13-1317.2. Possession of weapons prohibited (a.k.a. “Act 26”)

(a) Except as otherwise provided in this section, a school district or area vocational-technical school shall expel, for a period of not less than one year, any student who is determined to have brought onto or is in possession of a weapon on any school property, any school-sponsored activity or any public conveyance providing transportation to a school or school-sponsored

(b) Every school district and area vocational-technical school shall develop a written policy regarding expulsions for possession of a weapon as required under this section. Expulsions shall be conducted pursuant to all applicable regulations.

(c) The superintendent of a school district or an administrative director of an area vocational-technical school may recommend modifications of such expulsion requirements for a student on a case-by-case basis. The superintendent or other chief administrative officer of a school entity shall, in the case of an exceptional student, take all steps necessary to comply with the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (Public Law 91-230, 20 U.S.C. § 1400 et seq.).

(d) The provisions of this section shall not apply to the following:

(1) a weapon being used as part of a program approved by a school by an individual who is participating in the program; or

(2) a weapon that is unloaded and is possessed by an individual while traversing school property for the purpose of obtaining access to public or private lands used for lawful hunting, if the entry on school premises is authorized by school authorities.

(e) Nothing in this section shall be construed as limiting the authority or duty of a school or area vocational-technical school to make an alternative assignment or provide alternative educational services during the period of expulsion.

(e.1) A school district receiving a student who transfers from a public or private school during a period of expulsion for an act or offense involving a weapon may assign that student to an alternative assignment or provide alternative education services, provided that the assignment may not exceed the period of expulsion.

(f) All school districts and area vocational-technical schools shall report all incidents involving possession of a weapon prohibited by this section as follows:

(1) The school superintendent or chief administrator shall report the discovery of any weapon prohibited by this section to local law enforcement officials.

(2) The school superintendent or chief administrator shall report to the Department of Education all incidents relating to expulsions for possession of a weapon on school grounds, school-sponsored activities or public conveyances providing transportation to a school or school-sponsored activity. Reports shall include all information as required under section 1303

(g) As used in this section, the term “weapon” shall include, but not be limited to, any knife, cutting instrument, cutting tool, nunchaku, firearm, shotgun, rifle and any other tool, instrument or implement capable of inflicting serious bodily injury.

CREDIT(S) 1949, March 10, P.L. 30, No. 14, art. XIII, § 1317.2, added 1995, June 30, P.L. 220, No. 26, § 4, effective in 90 days. Amended 1997, June 25, P.L. 297, No. 30, § 6, effective July 1, 1997.

[FN1] 24 P.S. § 13-1303-A.

Term

Definition

Act 26

Pennsylvania State Code referring to a weapons violation. Please see a copy of Act 26 (found on the previous page).

Assault

An unlawful attack by one person upon another. The victim does not or is not able to defend themselves with enough force to prevent harm. The act should be intentionally, knowingly or recklessly causing bodily injury or serious bodily injury.

(simple) unlawful physical attack by on person upon another where neither the offender displays a weapon, nor the victim suffers obvious severe or aggravated bodily injury.

(aggravated) Assault with a weapon, where the attacker either uses a weapon or displays a weapon in a threatening manner.

Student Intervention Program

The Student Intervention Program (SIP) is designed to assist teachers with identifying behavioral, academic, or attendance concerns that pose a barrier to a scholar’s success. This process is designed to provide Tier 1. Tier 2, and Tier 3 interventions to provide academic and socio-emotional support for scholars.

Bullying

By law, “bullying” shall mean an intentional electronic, written, verbal or physical act, or a series of acts:

1. directed at another scholar or scholars;

2. which occurs in a school setting;

3. that is severe, persistent or pervasive; and

4. that has the effect of doing any of the following:

a. substantially interfering with a scholar’s education;

b. creating a threatening environment; or

c. substantially disrupting the orderly operation of the school; and “school setting” shall mean in the school, on school grounds, in school vehicles, at a designated bus stop or at any activity sponsored, supervised or sanctioned by the school.

However, it should be noted that both genders can engage in direct or indirect bullying, and it can be either physical and/or psychological in nature. Bullying can be carried out by a single individual or by a group. The target/victim or bullying can be a single individual or a group of scholars.

The behavior can be either overt or covert in nature utilizing various methods of communication. For example, the term cyber bullying is being used to describe bullying behavior which occurs on the internet.

Behavior is clearly bullying when: (1) there is an intent to harm – the perpetrator appears to find pleasure in taunting and continues even when the target’s distress is obvious. Mutual “teasing” should not be confused with bullying behavior and (2) there is intensity and duration – the taunting continues over a period of time, and is not welcomed by the target.

Cheating

To violate rules dishonestly. The consequence may include one or more of the following: loss of grade for the academic activity, loss of grade for the semester, mandatory summer school, or suspension.

Detention

Consequence that may be assigned by a Team Leader or a teacher for repeated minor incidents and/or a major incident. The Team Leader will contact parents 24 hours in advance to inform them about the detention. Parents must arrange transportation for the scholar. Scholars who do not attend detention will be subjected to disciplinary action.

Incident Report

Form used by staff to record major or repeated minor behavioral incidents (see Tier 2 incidents table). When a scholar is referred to the Team Leader’s office, the teacher will be required to document the behavior on an incident report.

Dress Code Violation

Any scholar who does not ARRIVE to school in the approved MSA Dress Code, and/or does not comply with the MSA dress code throughout the length of the school day will receive a logical consequence. The parent may be contacted to bring appropriate Dress Code attire or the scholar may be loaned appropriate dress code attire (if possible). If the scholar continues to dress out of code, a parent meeting will be required. Please note that this consequence will NOT apply to scholars whose parents/guardians contact the school about special circumstances regarding the reason for the dress code violation.

Certain clothing items worn in school in violation of the dress code will be confiscated. These items will be returned to a parent by a Team Leader at a later time. Memphis Street Academy does not assume responsibility for any lost, stolen, or damaged personal items that violate our dress code policy.

Expulsion

Scholar is dismissed from the school permanently, unless otherwise stated, due to severe or repeated behaviors. The scholarand parent have the right to be informed of the reasons for the movement toward expulsion and to respond to these reasons prior to the expulsion taking effect.

Parents and guardians of children who have been recommended for expulsion will have the right to a full evidentiary hearing before the Disciplinary Committee of the Board of Trustees of Memphis Street Academy, at which time they may present their argument and evidence for not expelling the scholar. The Parenting Adult will be notified of the hearing date in writing no less than three (3) days before the date of the hearing. If the Disciplinary Committee recommends expulsion of the scholar, the recommendation will be made at the next regularly scheduled meeting of the Board of Trustees (BOT). If the next meeting of the BOT is more than three (3) weeks from the date of the incident, the CEO or Principal will call a special meeting of the BOT. Parents and guardians may address the BOT if they wish, as specified by the BOT. The BOT will take a roll call vote, and the decision of the BOT will be final.

Please Note: The LEA* shall decide expulsion for special education scholars as stated in IDEA laws and regulations, on a case by case basis.

*LEA=Local Education Agency. In Pennsylvania, charter schools are their own LEA.

Extortion

To obtain something by using threat or intimidation.

Fight

Taking part in a physical struggle. Both parties involved will receive consequences.

“Hitting Back” will be considered fighting. Scholars are expected to walk away from physical altercations and get help from the nearest staff member.

Harassment

A person commits the crime of harassment when, with the intent to harass, annoy or alarm another, the person:

1. Strikes, shoves, kicks or otherwise subjects the other person to physical contact, or attempts or threatens to do the same;

2. Follows the other person in or about a public place or places; or

3. Engages in a course of conduct or repeatedly commits acts that serve no legitimate purpose.

In-School Suspension

Scholar will remain in the Team Leader’s office for the duration of their suspension. During this time the scholar will complete all classroom work, work on additional behavioral assignments given by the Team Leader and receive all homework.

In-School Suspensions are not a typical consequence. They will only be assigned in special circumstances, to be determined by the Team Leader.

Please Note: The LEA shall decide suspension for Special Education scholars as stated in IDEA laws and regulations, on a case by case basis.

Logical Consequence

Defined (by Ruth Charney, Teaching Children to Care) as: reasonable and respectful, neither punishment nor permission. The consequence will help scholars assume responsibility through structured learning opportunities and the opportunity to try again.

Manifestation Determination

A Manifestation Determination is a process, required by the Individuals With Disabilities Education Act (IDEA 2004), which is conducted when considering the exclusion of a scholar with a disability that constitutes a change of placement.

Out of Bounds

To be away from the school, teacher, or classroom without direct permission. All scholars must have a pass at all times to travel through the hallways during non-transitional periods. Consequences will be assigned on an individual basis and will depend on the reason for a scholar being Out of Bounds.

Out of School Suspension

No scholar may receive a suspension unless the scholar has been informed of the reason(s) for the suspension and has been given opportunity to respond before the suspension takes effect. Communication to the parent or guardian will follow the suspension imposed by the school.

Scholar will remain in the Team Leader’s office on the day of the incident until the parent or guardian is able to pick them up. The School expects that the parent or guardian will arrive to the school within one and a half hours of the original phone call. The day of pick up does NOT count as a day of suspension. The scholar is responsible for completing all in class and all homework for the day(s) missed due to suspension. The scholar may also be responsible for completing any assignments given by the Team Leader.

The scholar and parent have the right to be informed of the reasons for the suspension and to respond to them prior to the suspension taking effect. The parent has the right to immediate written notice of the suspension and when it exceeds three (3) school days, the school must offer to hold an informal hearing within the first five (5) school days.

ALL PARENTS OR GUARDIANS ARE REQUIRED TO ATTEND A REINSTATEMENT MEETING following the suspension. The scholar will arrive to school with the parent or guardian and will re-enter the classroom when the reinstatement meeting is finished.

Please note: The LEA shall decide suspension for Special Education scholars as stated in IDEA laws and regulations, on a case by case basis.

COSMIC Academy

(Caring Opportunities that Support Motivation, Integrity, and Community)

The COSMIC Academy is a Tier 3 intervention to support the behavioral needs of scholars who have a history of repeated norms violations, multiple out of school suspensions, and/or committing egregious offenses that disrupt the learning environment.

Play Fighting / Rough Housing

Taking part in aggressive physical play that simulates a fight. Play fighting is considered to be dangerous as scholars often become injured or the play fighting escalates into a real fight. It is important to understand that for the safety of all scholars play fighting is not allowed under any circumstances.

Reinstatement

A meeting held to restore the scholar to active standing.

Saturday Detention

Saturday Detention is held occasionally on assigned Saturdays from 9:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. Scholars must be on time and dressed in full uniform for Saturday School. This time will be used to complete a learning activity related to the scholar’s behavior or to make up instructional time that was lost because of absenteeism.

Failure to report to an assigned Saturday Detention may result in suspension. Should a scholar be unable to attend a Saturday Detention, the Team Leader must be notified to make alternate arrangements prior to the Saturday Detention assignment. It is up to the Team Leader’s discretion to determine whether or not a scholar will be rescheduled for a Saturday detention.

Self Defense

Self Defense applies only to those situations where a scholar could not walk away. Self Defense is NOT reacting to being hit or kicked. “Hitting Back” is not considered self-defense. Scholars are expected to walk away and get help from the nearest staff member.

Teasing

To upset or annoy by taunting or making fun of another scholar. Teasing is a “one time” occurrence. Teasing that occurs on more than one occasion and/or becomes a patterned behavior is considered bullying.

Under the influence

Having any detectible amount of alcohol or a controlled substance in your system and/or showing physical manifestations of being under the influence.

Impairment

Demonstrating physical signs of concerning behavior including but not limited to slurred speech, loss of balance, irritated eyes, a suspicious odor, or lethargy.

Recording and Reporting of Behaviors

Memphis Street Academy Charter School records behavioral incidents and the resulting outcomes. These records are then kept in a locked filing cabinet. At any time, a parent or guardian may request their scholar’s behavioral record. The request must be written and may be addressed to the Team Leader. The request will take between 24 and 48 hours to process. The parent or guardian must then come to the school to pick-up the records, as records will not be mailed or delivered via scholar backpacks. The Parenting Adult does have the right to appeal any information in the scholars behavioral record. To appeal the factual information (this is different from “not agreeing” with the decision), please write a letter addressed to: The Disciplinary Committee of the Board of Trustees. Mail or deliver the letter to your Team Leader. This letter will then be forwarded to the MSA Board of Trustees. Parents will be contacted by the committee within 48 hours regarding their appeal. All records will be redacted to protect the privacy of other scholars involved.

Bullying and cyberbullying

At Memphis Street Academy Charter School, bullying in any form will not be tolerated. It disrupts the learning environment and adversely affects the quality of a scholar’s educations. The Board of Trustees of Memphis Street Academy Charter School has adopted a school policy, which protects victims of both bullying and cyber bullying. Cyber bullying is defined as the use of information and communication technologies such as email, cell phone, text messages, instant messages, all Social Web sites that support the deliberate, hostile behavior intended to frighten or harm others.

The Board believes that all scholars are capable of achieving high levels of success if provided with a safe and nurturing environment that is conducive to learning and personal growth.

Bullying

§ Bullying means an intentional electronic, written, verbal or physical act, or a series of acts:

o Directed at another student or group of students;

o Which occurs in a “school setting” or outside of school and materially and substantially interferes with the educational process or program at the school such as to create a sufficient nexus with the school, as allowed by law;

o That is sever, persistent, or pervasive;

o That has the effect of doing the following:

§ Substantially interfering with a student’s education;

§ Creating a threatening environment; or

§ Substantially disrupting orderly operation of the school.

Cyber Bullying

§ Any student who uses a school-provided communication device (including a computer) or computer network (a) with the intent to intimidate, harass, or coerce another person, or (b) to use vulgar, obscene, profane, or lewd language to communicate such harassment, or (c) to threaten an illegal or immoral act shall be subjected to school disciplinary procedures.

§ Any student who uses a personal communication device on school grounds or at a school-related function (a) with the intent to intimidate, harass, or coerce another person, or (b) to use vulgar, obscene, profane, or lewd language to communicate such harassment, or (c) to threaten an illegal or immoral act shall be subjected to school disciplinary procedures.

A scholar or the Parenting Adult who believes their scholar has been a victim of bullying/cyber bullying is encouraged to report the incident to the Chief Executive Officer or designee or to any member of the school community including: Social Worker, Counselor, and Team Leader. The following actions will occur once the incident has been reported:

§ Initial Investigation-the school administrator shall conduct an investigation of the reported incident within 5 days of the initial report.

§ Follow-up/Report-a written report will be completed and a copy will be provided to the victim’s family. The report shall include all findings, and a summary of the investigation.

§ Action Steps (per School District of Philadelphia Policy)- confirmed allegations will involve the following consequences:

o Inform the student(s) found to have violated this policy and his/her parents/guardians the results of the investigation, including the actions of the student and the consequences for his/her actions.

o Review the definition of bullying and the district’s policy on bullying with the student(s) and his/her parents/guardians.

o Administer the consequences for the behavior relative to the number of offenses and the severity of the behavior.

Memphis Street Academy Charter School provides a full continuum of services to scholars with disabilities who qualify for Special Education or related services. These services include but are not limited to counseling, occupational therapy, physical therapy, speech therapy, learning support, and remedial reading instruction with a reading specialist.

If you are concerned about your scholar’s academic, social or behavioral performance or their progress in school, please speak to your scholar’s homeroom teacher about your concerns. As a school, we monitor our scholars’ academic, social and behavioral progress closely through the Student Intervention Program (SIP). When you are working on your scholar’s academics at home it is important to note that there may be a problem if your scholar’s reading level is significantly below grade level, if your scholar has memory retention issues, or an inability to remain on task and complete assignments. If you believe that your scholar may have special needs, please contact your Special Education Coordinator to discuss the options that Memphis Street Academy Charter School can offer.

At any time that you feel that your scholar may qualify for special education you may initiate testing procedures by forwarding a written statement to the Special Education Liaison stating your concerns about your scholar and that you wish your scholar to be tested. Your request to initiate testing means that your scholar will remain in his/her present educational placement. The school has 60 school days to complete the testing process.

After the testing is completed and a report prepared there will be a meeting to discuss the results. You have the right to attend this meeting and offer input into the goals and supports that will be put in place for your scholar. When this discussion results in differences that cannot be resolved you have the right to request a pre-hearing conference, mediation, or an impartial due-process hearing. You may also request a combination of these alternatives.

For further information on the evaluation procedures and provisions of services to protected handicapped scholars or scholars with disabilities, contact:

Special Education Liaison

Phone: (215) 291-4709 ext. 5120

Memphis Street Academy Charter School must provide you with prior written notice each time it proposes, refuses to initiate, or changes the identification, evaluation, or educational placement of your scholar or the provision of a free appropriate public education to your scholar.

The prior written notice will include the following:

1. description of the action proposed or refused by Memphis Street Academy Charter School, an explanation of why the agency proposes or refuses to take the action, and a description of any options the school considered and the reasons why those options were rejected;

2. description of each evaluation procedure, test, record, or report the school uses as a basis for the proposal or refusal; and

3. description of any other factors which are relevant to the school’s proposal or refusal

The notice must be written in language understandable to the general public, and provided in your native language or other mode of communication. If your native language or other mode of communication is not a written language, the special education teacher of Memphis Street Academy Charter School will take steps to ensure that the notice is translated orally or by other means to you in your native language or other mode of communication; that you understand the content of the notice.

Parent Consent

The administration of Memphis Street Academy Charter School must obtain your consent before conducting an initial evaluation and before the placement of your scholar in a program providing special education and related services. (Except for pre-placement evaluation and initial placement, consent may not be required as a condition of any benefit to you or your scholar.) The school may require parental consent for other services and activities if it establishes and implements effective procedures to ensure that a parent's refusal to consent does not result in a failure to provide the scholar with a free appropriate public education.

This means that no part of a free appropriate public education or other benefit for your scholar can be denied because of your electing to not consent to a school district proposal. For example, the school cannot refuse to provide one service because of your unwillingness to consent to another service. Similarly, the school cannot cease providing special education (or any other particular benefit) because of your unwillingness to consent to a change in the array of services or benefits provided to your scholar.

Whereas state law requires parental consent before a scholar with disabilities is evaluated or initially provided special education and related services, state procedures govern the school in overriding your refusal to consent. Where there is no state law requiring consent before a scholar is evaluated or initially provided special education and related services then the school may use the federal procedures for due process hearings to determine whether your scholar may be evaluated or initially provided special education and related services without your consent. If the hearing officer upholds the school, it may evaluate or initially provide special education and related services to your scholar without your consent, subject to your rights to appeal the decision and to have your scholar remain in his or her present educational placement during the pending of any administrative or judicial proceeding.

You have the right to obtain an independent educational evaluation of your scholar.

You have the right to an independent educational evaluation at public expense if you disagree with the evaluation obtained by Memphis Street Academy Charter School. However, the school may initiate a due process hearing to show that its evaluation is appropriate. If the final decision is that the evaluation is appropriate you still have the right to an independent educational evaluation, but not at public expense. This provision for independent evaluation at public expense excludes scholars who are solely gifted or thought-to-be gifted.

If you obtain an independent educational evaluation at private expense, the results of the evaluation must be considered by the school in any decision made with respect to the provision of a free appropriate public education to your scholar, and may be presented as evidence at a due-process hearing regarding your scholar.

If a hearing officer requests an independent educational evaluation as part of a hearing, the cost of the evaluation must be at public expense.

The administration or special education coordinator of Memphis Street Academy Charter School will provide to you, on request, information about where an independent educational evaluation may be obtained.

Whenever an independent evaluation is conducted at public expense, the criteria under which the evaluation is obtained, including the location of the evaluation and the qualifications of the examiner, must be the same as the criteria which the public agency uses when it initiates an evaluation.

The provisions for surrogate parents do not apply to scholars who are solely gifted or thought-to-be gifted.

Memphis Street Academy Charter School shall ensure that an individual is assigned to act as a surrogate for the parents of a scholar when no parent can be identified; the school, after reasonable efforts, cannot discover the whereabouts of a parent; or the scholar is a ward of the State under the laws of the State. The school must have a method for determining whether a scholar needs a surrogate parent, and for assigning a surrogate parent to the scholar.

The school may select a surrogate parent in any way permitted under State law, but must ensure that a person selected as a surrogate is not an employee of a public agency which is involved in the education or care of the scholar, has no interest that conflicts with the interest of the scholar he or she represents, and has knowledge and skills that ensure adequate representation of the scholar. (An individual is not disqualified as a Memphis Street Academy Charter employee from appointment as a surrogate solely because he or she is paid by the school to serve as a surrogate parent.)

The surrogate parent may represent the scholar in all matters relating to the identification, evaluation, and educational placement of the scholar, and the provision of a free appropriate public education to the scholar.

Annual Notification of Rights Under FERPA

Memphis Street Academy Charter School must permit you to inspect and review any education records relating to your scholar with respect to the identification, evaluation, and educational placement of your scholar, and the provision of a free appropriate public education to your scholar, which are collected, maintained, or used by the school. The school must comply with a request without unnecessary delay and before any meeting regarding an individualized education program or hearing relating to the identification, evaluation, or placement of your scholar, and in no case more than 45 days after the request has been made. Please note that “unnecessary delay” does not mean “immediate.” The staff of Memphis Street Academy Charter needs at least 2 days to honor your request but will never take more than the 45 days allotted to us.

Your right to inspect and review education records under this section includes the following provisions.

1. the right to a response from the participating agency to reasonable request for explanations and interpretations of the records;

2. your right to have your representative inspect and review the records; and

3. your right to request that the school provide copies of the records containing the information if failure to provide those copies would effectively prevent you from exercising your right to inspect and review the records

The school may presume that you have authority to inspect and review records relating to your scholar unless the school has been advised that you do not have the authority under applicable State law governing such matters as guardianship, separation, and divorce.

If any education record includes information on more than one scholar, you have the right to inspect and review only the information relating to your scholar or to be informed of that specific information. The school must provide you, on request, a list of the types and locations of education records collected, maintained, or used by the school.

In compliance with state and federal law, Memphis Street Academy Charter School will provide to each protected handicapped scholar and scholar with disabilities (without discrimination or cost to the scholar or family) those related aids, services or accommodations which are needed to provide equal opportunity to participate in and obtain the benefits of the school program (and extracurricular activities) to the maximum extent appropriate to the scholar’s abilities. In order to qualify as a protected handicapped scholar, the scholar must be of school age with a physical or mental disability which substantially limits or prohibits participation in or access to an aspect of the school program.

These services and protections for “protected handicapped scholars” are distinct from those applicable to all eligible or exceptional scholars enrolled (or seeking enrollment) in special education programs.

BUILDING AND SCHOOL PROCEDURES AND PRACTICES

Entitlement to a Free and Public Education

(a) All persons residing in this Commonwealth between the ages of 6 and 21 years are entitled to a free and full education in the Commonwealth’s public schools.

(b) Parents or parenting adults of all children between the ages of 8 and 17 are required by the compulsory attendance law to ensure that their children attend an approved educational institution, unless legally excused. Scholars who have not graduated may not be asked to leave school merely because they have reached 17 years of age -- if they are fulfilling their responsibilities as scholars.

Equal Opportunity and Non-Discrimination

The Board of Trustees requires equal educational opportunity for all scholars enrolled in the educational programs and activities of the school including, but not limited to, course offerings, athletic programs, guidance and counseling, and tests and procedures regardless of gender, sexual orientation, race, color, creed, religion, national origin, social or economic status, parenthood, marital status, or disability.

Parents and guardians are expected to act appropriately on the school premises at all times. Please remember that:

  • Smoking is not permitted on the campus.
  • Traffic and parking regulations of the city of Philadelphia must be followed. Police may give tickets for illegal parking and blocking traffic.
  • Parents/guardians bringing scholars to school or picking them up are required to follow the driving pattern indicated by the security or school staff.
  • We recognize that there are times when parents/guardians may be frustrated or angry about a situation at the school. The best way to resolve conflicts is calmly. All staff members are expected to act professionally at all times. We ask that parents/guardians, also, remain that way. Screaming and threatening may lead to defensive behavior and then nothing is accomplished. In addition, we may have to ask security to escort a disruptive adult from the building, call the police, and/or ban someone from the school premises.
  • Verbal harassment such as cursing, derogatory comments, jokes, slurs or threats is prohibited and a cause for a parents/guardians to be barred from campus.
  • Physical harassment such as unnecessary or offense touching, impeding or blocking movement, or touching a staff member or scholar in anger is prohibited and a cause for a parents/guardians to be barred from campus. Police will be notified.
  • Visual harassment such as derogatory gestures or symbols is prohibited and a cause for a parents/guardians to be banned from campus.
  • Teachers cannot stop teaching to take phone calls or meet with you. Please follow the procedure laid out in the Teacher Contact Tree to set up a meeting with a teacher.
  • Please remember that school is a professional workplace for our staff and an academic workplace for our scholars. Please treat this environment as you would any other professional workplace.

Memphis Street Academy has been approved by the Department of Education as a Community Eligibility Provision (CEP) site. This means that all Memphis Street Academy scholars are entitled to a free breakfast and lunch program without the requirement of completing lunch applications.

Scholars will be given this snack during their 30-minute independent reading period on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays each week. In an effort to promote healthy eating and lifestyle choices for our scholars, Memphis Street Academy is committed to adhering to the Pennsylvania Department of Education’s Nutritional Guidelines for food and beverages on our school campus.

Therefore, effective September 8, 2015 scholars may not bring outside food or drinks onto the campus except in instances of medical need where the school nurse has met with the family. In the event that a scholar wishes to pack a lunch, healthy packed lunches are permitted in the school building. These lunches will be under the supervision of the cafeteria staff and must qualify as nutritious according to the Pennsylvania Department of Education’s Division of Food and Nutrition Program.

For more information regarding the Department of Education’s nutritional guidelines please visit http://www.portal.state.pa.us/portal/server.pt/community/food___nutrition_services/7483/school_day_just_got_healthier/1220549 or feel free to meet with the school nurse to discuss requirements for packing a school lunch that meets the Pennsylvania Department of Education’s Nutritional Guidelines.

Closed Campus

Memphis Street Academy operates on a "closed campus" plan. The school officials have supervisory responsibility for all scholars while they are on school property during school time. Because of this responsibility, whether the scholar has walked, been delivered by personally-owned vehicle, or ridden a school bus, he/she is not permitted to leave the premises until the end of the regular school day or after being signed out by a parent/parenting adult/designee at the office. Any scholar who violates this policy shall be subject to disciplinary action.

Memphis Street Academy Charter School maintains education records for every scholar. These records may contain confidential and/or personal information that includes, but is not limited to: scholar’s name, name of parents and other family members, the address of the scholar or scholar’s family, and personal information or personal characteristics which would make the scholar’s identity easily traceable.

MSA must obtain parent consent before disclosing personally identifiable information to anyone not entitled to see it under law. “Consent” means that parents have been fully informed regarding the activity requiring consent in their native language or other mode of communication, they understand and agree in writing to the activity, and they understand that consent is voluntary and may be revoked at any time.

Memphis Street Academy will be closed when the Philadelphia public schools are closed. In the event that the school is closed because of hazardous weather conditions or for any other emergency, announcements will be made on KYW (1060 a.m.).

Memphis Street Academy Charter School’s broadcast # is 1383

During inclement weather it may become necessary to close school earlier than the usual dismissal time. Although this early closing is announced on the radio, many parents are unaware of the closing and there may be no one home for your scholar. We are concerned with the health and safety of each scholar, particularly in the event of an early dismissal. Keep our emergency closing number at work, home, and with any emergency contacts. Work out an emergency plan with your scholar. Any early dismissals will be announced on the radio. Please do not call the school. We also find out on the radio at the same time the announcement is made. We will not be able to contact every family so on inclement weather days, please listen to the radio.

In the event that Memphis Street Academy must close separate from the school district, our number (# 1383) will be announced. We will also update our school website as soon as a decision has been made to close school or to dismiss early.

Scholars will participate in fire/emergency/safety drills throughout the school year. These drills prepare scholars and staff for any emergencies that may arise and require the building to be evacuated. Scholars are expected to remain quiet and attentive during drills as important information may be disseminated that will assist staff members to ensure the safety of all scholars, staff, and visitors in case of emergency.

In case of a school evacuation scholars will be evacuated to the following site:

Cohocksink Playground (Cohox)

2829 Cedar Street

Philadelphia, PA 19134

Field Trips

All classes may participate in field trips throughout the school year. Field trips provide valuable and worthwhile learning experiences for scholars and are related to the curriculum. Parental permission slips are required for each scholar participating in these activities. The CEO and/or Principal will determine the dress code for all trips. In most cases, scholars will be expected to be dressed in full uniform when attending a school trip. In the event that a family is unable to afford a trip, please contact the scholar’s teacher for payment arrangements.

Each day Memphis Street Academy Charter School begins with a grade level team assembly and recital of the Pledge of Allegiance and a flag salute, as well as the Memphis Street Academy Scholar Pledge.

· Scholars may decline to recite the Pledge of Allegiance and may refrain from saluting the Flag on the basis of personal belief or religious convictions.

· Scholars who choose to refrain from such participation shall respect the rights and interests of classmates who do wish to participate.

Parents and parenting adults have the right to file a grievance for any actions/decisions made by the Board of Trustees that impact their scholar or family. The following steps must be done in order to file a grievance:

  1. Write a letter to the Board President outlining or detailing your concerns.
  2. In that letter, you may request a date for a hearing. The Board of Trustees will respond to the request within 30 days of receipt of this letter.
  3. A sub-committee/mediator will be assigned to hear the grievance.
  4. A decision completed in wring will follow within seven (7) days.

In the case that the school is unable to provide satisfactory resolution to a grievance or concern families may submit their complaints in writing to the Pennsylvania Department of Education at the following address:

Pennsylvania Department of Education

Division of Federal Programs

333 Market Street, 7th Floor

Harrisburg, PA 17126

In the case that the Pennsylvania Department of Education is unable to provide a satisfactory resolution to a grievance or concern families may submit their complaints in writing to the United States Department of Education.

The purpose of homebound instruction is to provide scholars with some level of instructional services during a temporary period of absence so that, on return to school, they can re-engage successfully with their instructional programs. A scholar may be eligible for homebound instruction if he or she is confined to home or hospital for physical disability, illness, injury, urgent reasons, or when such confinement is recommended for psychological or psychiatric reasons. The term urgent reasons shall be strictly construed and does not permit irregular attendance. The scholar’s condition must be temporary in nature, and the temporary condition must be anticipated to last more than four (4) weeks. Additionally, the scholar’s need for homebound instruction must be formally documented by a physician or psychiatrist. Any parenting adult who wishes to enroll his or her scholar in homebound instruction should contact the school social worker.

All Memphis Street Academy scholars will be assigned a locker to store book bags and other outerwear items. Scholars are NOT permitted to utilize any locks on lockers. Scholars will not be permitted to utilize lockers during the instructional day. Scholars will store outdoor wear and book bags in lockers prior to homeroom period and will return to lockers prior to the team assembly at the end of the day to obtain items needed for dismissal. In the event that a scholar places a lock on a locker, the lock will be immediately removed from the locker and confiscated by the Team Leader.

Lost and Found

All lost articles, including textbooks, are placed in the designated lost and found area. A scholar who finds an article can help in returning it to the team leader’s office. A scholar who loses an article should go to the Team Coach for assistance.

Scholars are required to clearly mark his or her name on all school related items such as lunchboxes, book bags, coats, blazers, etc. For scholar safety, his or her name should be marked on the inside of all personal and school-related items. Memphis Street Academy Charter School will not assume responsibility for any personal items that were brought to school by scholars.

The following items are not permitted in school:

Items NOT Permitted in School

Outside food and beverage items, electronic games, jewelry, make up, fashion accessories, radios, personal laptops, iPads, skateboards, bicycles, headphones/earbuds, money (unless needed for trip or school related project; this money should be in an envelope), Cell phones (must be turned off before entering the building. They may not be used under any circumstances in the school building including as a camera or a calculator), CD players, video games, iPods or MP3 Players, toys, trading cards, pets, or any other item that School Administration deems as a disruption to the learning environment.

Possession of any of these items during school may subject the scholar to disciplinary action, as well as confiscation of the items.

School Nurse

We have a full-time, registered professional nurse who is responsible for protecting and promoting the physical health of scholars. The nurse coordinates and conducts all the screening and health programs and works directly with scholars to provide daily health care and to give guidance and educational support to scholars in health-related matters. She is available to scholars and parenting adults during the hours of 8:45 am and 3:30 pm. Parenting adults and scholars are asked to contact the school nurse regarding any special health problems.

If your child becomes ill during the school day, he/she should ask the teacher for a pass to go to the nurse’s office. The nurse will determine what care procedure will be followed.

The school nurse will:

1. provide first aid in emergencies. The nurse will notify parents/ guardians when a child has been hurt or suddenly becomes seriously ill and needs immediate care from a doctor and/or hospital.

2. notify parents/guardians when a child can no longer remain in class and needs to be taken home because of injury, illness or a communicable condition, such as the following: fever of 100.4 or more, suspected contagious disease, vomiting, diarrhea, head lice, cannot remain comfortably in class, and undetermined rash.

The nurse will also maintain all scholar medications and assure that all medications are administered in accordance with parental approval and as prescribed, all medications should, if possible, be given by the parent/ guardian at home. In the event medication must be administered at school, the medication must be furnished by the parent and turned in to the nurse’s office in the original container and be properly labeled. Scholars may not bring controlled substances to school. A parenting adult must bring a controlled substance to the school and meet with the nurse. The parenting adult and the nurse will verify the medication and the written order. The medication will be counted and documented. The parent or guardian must have the form for medication administration completed by the scholar’s healthcare provider. Scholars may not carry prescription or non-prescription medications, including inhalers, with them to any class. An exception for a scholar carrying an inhaler may be made by the school nurse if the scholar has a current written order on file for a multi-dose inhaler and the school nurse has conducted a verification assessment to determine that the scholar understands the correct times/situations when the inhaler should be used. In this situation, the school nurse will communicate the exception in writing to the Team Leader and team teachers so they are aware that a particular scholar is permitted to carry his/her inhaler. Any exceptions must be approved by the CEO and/or Principal with written notes from the parent/guardian and the scholar’s doctor, or the school nurse may make an exception on a temporary basis when unusual circumstances exist.

A doctor’s authorization is required for any of the following:

Any medication given

Any controlled drug

Emergency medication kept in hand; i.e., inhalers, epi-pens (physician instructions required)

Annual update of doctor’s authorization for long-term care.

Upon return to school after major surgery or hospitalization a physician’s release must be presented to the school nurse, specifying any necessary restrictions or concerns.

Scholars with lice or ringworm will be excluded from school until the condition is treated. Scholars with lice should be treated with a lice shampoo, and the school nurse must be notified of treatment. Ringworm of the body must be treated with an anti-fungal ointment, and covered. Ringworm of the scalp requires treatment prescribed by a physician, and must be covered while at school.

When a scholar is excused from participation in physical education for medical reasons, he/she must provide the school nurse with a written excuse from a doctor or the parent/guardian.

There may be instances at which time it would be essential that the nurse would be able to contact the parent/guardian. It is very important that the nurse have current telephone numbers in order to contact a parent, guardian, or designated person in case of an emergency.

It is the responsibility of the parent/guardian to provide transportation home, to a doctor, or by ambulance if such a need arises. It is their responsibility to obtain medical attention unless an emergency is so serious that the scholar must be taken immediately from school to a doctor. In case of such an emergency, the parent/guardian will be notified as soon as possible and a school employee will remain with the child until the parent/guardian arrives at the school or treatment site. Memphis Street Academy Charter School is not responsible for any costs of emergency care or transportation.

It is the school nurse’s responsibility to ensure that all scholars have been properly immunized in accordance with the Pennsylvania Department of Health regulations. In the event that a scholar is missing immunization records or does not have up to date immunizations, the school nurse will send a letter home to notify a parenting adult. If the up to date immunization records are not brought to the school in a timely fashion and/or there is no documentation to support that a scholar received the out of date immunizations, a scholar may be excluded from school. (Source: Pennsylvania Department of Health School Immunization Regulations, Title 28, chapter 23, and the Philadelphia Health Code, Title 6, Section 6-210).

Return to School After Accident

Scholars who return to school with casts, crutches, wheelchairs, walkers, canes and/or immobilizers require a written physician’s note that indicates:

1. Scholar may return to/attend school;

2. Any restrictions from physical education and lunch/class recess; and

3. Confirmation from the physician that the scholar has been properly instructed in the use of crutches, walker, cane, or wheelchair, if applicable.

STITCHES/STAPLES: Any scholar who returns to school with stitches should provide a written note from his or her physician that indicates:

1. Scholar may return to/attend school; and

2. Any restrictions for physical education and lunch/classroom recess.

SURGICAL PROCEDURES: Any scholar who returns to school post-surgical procedure requires a written physician's note that indicates:

1. Scholar may return to/attend school; and

2. Any restrictions for physical education and lunch/class recess.

Sick Scholar Policy

A scholar may not attend school if any of the following symptoms are present or suspected by a physician or school nurse:

· Lice: Immediately contact the parenting adult of any scholar who has an active case of head lice so that appropriate treatment can be provided at home. Evidence of appropriate treatment should be submitted to the school nurse.

· Fever: Children should remain home or be sent home if they have above-normal temperature.

· Conjunctivitis (“pink eye”): A scholar may return only after discharge discontinues and 24 hours of treatment is completed.

· Rashes: Unidentified rashes must be diagnosed by a health care provider.

· Impetigo: Your scholar must be seen by a health care provider.

· Diarrhea: The scholar experiences diarrhea two days in a row or three times in one day.

· Vomiting: The child experiences repeated forceful evacuation with other symptoms or the child’s inability to eat.

· Any other contagious condition: measles, chickenpox, mumps, whooping cough, or streptococcal infections that are still contagious

In addition, a scholar shall not attend school if he or she is experiencing any unusual discomfort such as an earache or other pain that causes the child to cry or experience significant pain.

Parent's cooperation with our policy, which is state law, will minimize the number of days that scholars and staff are sick, thus helping to maintain a healthy learning environment.

Source: 28 Pa Code §§ 27.71 - 27.73

All scholars will be issued the necessary books for the subjects they are taking. The care of these textbooks is the scholar's responsibility and any damage to a book beyond normal wear will result in a fine.

All textbooks must be covered. Parents are financially responsible for damaged or lost textbooks. In an effort to decrease damage to books we strongly recommend the following precautions:

  • HARDBACK textbooks are expected to be covered with commercial book covers or brown paper bag covers. PLEASE, no clear contact paper on hardcover books.
  • SOFTBACK textbooks (workbooks) should be covered with clear contact.

Transportation

Scholars who ride buses should remember that they are under the jurisdiction of the school, from the time they enter the bus in the morning until they leave it in the evening. Scholars will be held accountable for their behavior on the bus. This includes yellow bus transportation for specialized programs and SEPTA buses. Misconduct and inappropriate language or tone will not be tolerated on the buses at any time. The bus driver has jurisdiction over each scholar while the scholar occupies the bus. This being the case, scholars are expected to cooperate with the driver by respecting and obeying his/her requests immediately. School rules and regulations apply on the bus. Those scholars who do not abide by the regulations will be subject to disciplinary action, which may result in the loss of bus-riding privileges. In the event that a scholar is eligible for yellow bus transportation, the school district provides bus transportation to and from the scholar’s residence of record only. No visitors are allowed to ride buses. Riding a bus is a privilege; it is not considered a right. Scholars are not to carry prohibited or illegal items (radios, tape players, toys, weapons, etc.) onto the bus. Parents are not per permitted to enter the school bus for any reason and are subject to a $300.00 fine if they do so. Parents are expected to contact the bus companies directly with questions and concerns. Please be ready to give your scholar’s bus route number.

Visitors

We welcome school visitors and hope you will come see us over the course of the year. For our scholars’ safety and for the benefit of their learning all visitors are required to first report to the main office. Visits during instructional time shall be permitted only with the CEO and/or Principal's approval and with a 24-hour notice. Such visits shall not be permitted if their duration or frequency interferes with the delivery of instruction or disrupts the normal school environment. The Administration has the right to refuse entry or to request unauthorized persons to leave the school.

Withdrawals

In order for a scholar to withdraw from school, it is necessary that the parenting adult makes a written request to the administrative staff in the main office that the scholar be withdrawn. This request must include the date of withdrawal and the name and address of that school. Records will be mailed to the new school after a release is signed.

Memphis Street Academy School Program

All scholars will receive instruction in the following areas:

  • Reading
  • Mathematics
  • Social studies
  • Science
  • Expressive Arts determined by grade level
    • Technology
    • Art/Music
    • Writing
    • Physical Education and Health
    • STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Math)

Homework assignments are essential for the full academic growth of the scholar. This includes both study homework and written homework. Home assignments strengthen and extend the learning experience of the classroom. Parents are expected to monitor homework compliance according to teachers’ standards and ensure that their scholar is engaging in at least 30 minutes of nightly reading. Parents must sign a reading log to document that 30 minutes of independent reading has occurred each night.

Scholars in all grades are assigned a minimum of 90-120 minutes of homework weekly. Scholars failing to complete homework assignments will be subject to the consequences set forth by their teachers.

Scholars borrow books from leveled baskets in their advisory teacher’s classroom. A book contract will come home with your scholar for use of these books. Please review the contract with your scholar, sign the contract, and return the contract to your scholar’s advisory teacher. Ensure that your scholar reads at least 30 minutes each night and sign the reading log to document that you have observed your scholar reading.

Fees for Searching, Retrieving, and Copying Records

Memphis Street Academy may not charge a fee to search for or to retrieve information under this part, but may charge a fee for copies of records which are made for the parents under this part if such fee does not effectively prevent the parents from exercising their right to inspect and review those records. The fee for copies is $.10 per page.

Record of Access

The school must keep a record of parties obtaining access to education records collected, maintained, or used under this part (except access by parents and authorized employees of the participating agency), including the name of the party, the date access was given, and the purpose for which the party was authorized to use the records.

Amendment of Records at Parent’s Request

If you believe that information in education records collected, maintained, or used under this part is inaccurate or misleading or violates the privacy or other rights of your scholar, you may request, in writing, that the school amend the information. The school must decide whether to amend the information in accordance with your request within a reasonable period of time of receipt of the request. If the school decides to refuse to amend the information, it must inform you of its refusal and of your right to a hearing as set forth below.

The school shall, upon request, provide an opportunity for a hearing to challenge information in education records to ensure that such results are not inaccurate, misleading, or otherwise in violation of the privacy or other rights of the scholar.

If, as a result of a hearing, the school determines that any information is inaccurate, misleading, or otherwise in violation of the privacy or other rights of the scholar, it must amend such information accordingly and so inform you in writing. If, as a result of a hearing, the school determines that the information in question is not inaccurate, misleading, or otherwise in violation of the privacy or other rights of the scholar, it must inform you of your right to place in your scholar’s records a statement commenting on the information or setting forth any reasons for disagreement with the school’s decision. Any explanation placed in your scholar's records under this section must be maintained by the agency as part of the records of the scholar for as long as the record or contested portion is maintained by the agency; if the records of the scholar or the contested portion is disclosed by the agency to any party, the explanation must also be disclosed to the party.

Definitions

Consent means that: (a) you have been fully informed of all information relevant to the activity for which consent is sought, in your native language or other mode of communication; (b) you understand and agree in writing to the carrying out of the activity for which your consent is sought, and the consent describes that activity and lists the records (if any) that will be released and to whom; and (c) you understand that the granting of consent is voluntary on your part and may be revoked at any time.

Evaluation means procedures used in accordance with state special education rules found at 22 Pa. Code 14.25 and 342.25 to determine whether a scholar has a disability and the nature and extent of the special education and related services that the scholar needs. The term refers to procedures used selectively with an individual scholar and does not include basic tests administered to or procedures used with all scholars in a school, grade, or class.

Independent educational evaluation means an evaluation conducted by a qualified examiner who is not employed by Memphis Street Academy.

Independent educational evaluation at public expense means that the school either pays for the full cost of the evaluation or ensures that the evaluation is otherwise provided at no cost to you.

Personally identifiable means data or information including the following characteristics:

  1. The name of a scholar or the name of any scholar's family members;
  2. The address of the scholar;
  3. Any personally identifying piece of information such as the scholar's telephone number or social security number; and
  4. Any list of personal characteristics or other information which would make the scholar's identity easily traceable.

Applicable Laws and Regulations

22 Purdon's Statutes §5-501, 13-1371, 13-1372, 13-1373.1, 13-1374, 13-1376, and 13-1377, Pennsylvania School Code.

22 Pa. Code, Chapter 14, Regulations of the State Board of Education.

22 Pa. Code, Chapter 342, Standards for Special Education.

20 USC 1401 et seq., The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (1990), formerly known as Public Law 94-142, The Education of All Handicapped Children Act. This includes the Handicapped Children's Protection Act of 1986, P.L. 99-372, August 5, 1986.

34 CFR, Parts 300-303, Rules and Regulations for Individuals with Disabilities Education Act.

Public Law 101-392, The Carl D. Perkins Vocational and Applied Technology Education Act Amendments of 1990.

TITLE I REQUIREMENTS

Title I is a federally funded program intended to improve scholars’ academic achievements by expanding learning opportunities and supplementing basic skills instruction in reading and math for scholars who have need for improving such skills.

School-Parent Compact

The staff of Memphis Street Academy, scholars, and parents of our school community agree that this Compact outlines how they will all share the responsibility for improved academic achievement and the means by which Memphis Street Academy and parents will build and maintain a partnership to help academic achievement.

School Responsibilities

MSA will:

· Provide high-quality curriculum and instruction in an effective learning environment that supports scholars in meeting the Commonwealth’s high academic achievement standards.

· Establish high expectations for staff, scholars, and parenting adults by ensuring a rigorous and challenging curriculum, implementing programs targeted at increasing academic achievement, and committing to recruit, retain, and train qualified staff.

· Highlight ways that parents can extend and advance the learning environment at home. Also, implement programs, activities, and procedures that will be planned and operated at various times throughout the school year to engage parents as active participants in increasing scholar achievement, such as literacy activities with parents/parenting adults, Family Learning Nights, the No Excuses University Initiative, seminars with school support staff, and other activities and workshops.

· Ensure regular progress updates to parents/parenting adults by holding regular Report Card Conferences, which serve as opportunities for families to participate in discussions relating to the education of their scholar.

· Offer flexible scheduling times for meetings with parents/parenting adults, and parent/parenting adult workshops.

· Use, when appropriate and necessary, MSA’s Title I funds to pay reasonable fees for childcare to enable parents/parenting adults to participate in school related Title I meetings and training sessions.

· Offer flexible tutoring and intervention programs.

· Administer family satisfaction questionnaires every Spring.

· Administer family needs/interests surveys every Fall.

· Otherwise support a partnership between the school, parents, and the community to improve academic achievement; including helping parents/parenting adults understand the following topics: Pennsylvania’s academic content standards, State academic assessments, the Student Intervention Program, the School Report Card, and how to monitor their scholar's progress.

· Provide materials and training to help parents/parenting adults improve their children's academic achievement including extended learning opportunities through parent/parenting adult involvement take-home activities and books, reading skill cards, and articles in a monthly newsletter.

· Ensure that information related to all school and family programs, meetings, and other activities will be sent home in a format and language that parents/parenting adults can understand, and honor requests for alternate formats, to the extent appropriate, in a language that parents/parenting adults can understand.

· Maximize parent/parenting adult involvement and participation in their scholar's education by offering Title I meetings at different times, distributing surveys and questionnaires asking parents/parenting adults for suggestions and recommendations for continued school program effectiveness and/or improvement, and responding to all suggestions and recommendations as soon as practicably possible.

· Provide parents with regular reports on their children’s academic and behavioral progress through progress reporting during Parent/Teacher conferences, samples of scholar work, and updates on reading, writing and math assessments. MSA will initiate parent contact whenever a pattern of behavior emerges that interferes with scholar learning.

· Provide parents with opportunities to become engaged with their scholar’s educational program and progress, through volunteering and participating in their scholar’s class and observing classroom activities.

· Provide parents reasonable access to staff.

Parent Responsibilities

Parental involvement means the participation of parents/parenting adults in regular, two-way, and meaningful communication about scholar academic learning and other school activities. This is to ensure that:

  • Parents/parenting adults play an integral role in assisting in their scholar's learning;
  • Parents/parenting adults are encouraged to be actively involved in their scholar's education at school.

Also, parents/parenting adults agree to support their scholar’s learning in the following ways:

a. Establish routines to support my scholar’s success in school:

· appropriate bed time

· monitor attendance

· homework & reading

· nutrition

· grooming and hygiene

1. Communicate the significance of success in school and its relationship with success in life.

2. Volunteer time to the school during the school year.

3. Ensure that their scholar attends school on a regular basis and arrives at school on time.

4. Make sure that their scholar completes and returns homework on time.

5. Remain informed about their scholar’s education and communicate with the school by promptly reading all notices from the school and responding as appropriate.

Scholar Responsibilities

Scholars of MSA will share the responsibility to improve their academic achievement and achieve the State’s high standards. Specifically, scholars agree that they will:

1. Attend school regularly and arrive at school on time.

2. Complete all daily homework and return it to school on time.

3. Support the mission of MSA as a Caring School Community.

4. Follow the Code of Scholar Conduct and adhere to school-wide norms.

5. Be responsible for giving family members all information sent home from school.

6. Plan a portion of each day for a period of uninterrupted reading time.

Parent Involvement Opportunities

Parental involvement means the participation of parents/guardians in regular, two-way and meaningful communication about academic learning and other school activities. This is to ensure:

A. That all parenting adults play an integral role in assisting in their child’s learning.

B. That all parenting adults are encouraged to be actively involved in their child’s education at school.

Part 1: School Expectation Requirements

The staff of Memphis Street Academy Charter School agrees to implement the following legal requirements: literacy activities; informational workshops; family involvement events; for the involvement of parenting adults. These programs will be planned and operated at various times throughout the school year.

The staff will create a school/family compact. We believe the school staff and scholars share in the responsibilities for improved scholar achievement.

Annually, parenting adults will attend Back to School Night for information on Memphis Street Academy Charter School’s participation in Title 1.

Part 2: Description of How Memphis Street Academy Charter School will Implement Required Parent Involvement Components.

Memphis Street Academy Charter will take the following actions to involve parenting adults in the process by:

a. Administering family satisfaction questionnaires every Spring;

b. Administering a family needs/interest survey during the school year

c. Offering a variety of parenting adult meetings and workshops;

d. When appropriate and necessary, Title 1 funds may be used to pay staff for childcare services to enable parenting adults to attend workshops and meetings;

Memphis Street Academy Charter School will assist parenting adults in understanding:

a. The report card

c. State academic assessments

d. Common Core Standards

e. How to monitor scholar progress

f. Strategies for helping scholars learn to read

g. Trips and activities

Parenting adults will be invited to attend:

a. Back to School Night

b. Report Card Conferences at least three times a year

c. Workshops geared to specific grades

Memphis Street Academy Charter School will provide materials and training to help parenting adults improve their children’s academic achievement through the use of parent involvement take home activities and books.

It is Memphis Street Academy Charter School’s policy that information related to all school and family programs, meetings and other activities will be sent home in a format and language the parenting adults can understand. We will also honor requests for alternate formats to the extent appropriate, in a language the parenting adults can understand.

Part 3: Additional School Responsibilities Policy Components

In order to maximize parenting adult involvement and participation in their child’s education, Title 1 meetings will be offered at different times.

Surveys and questionnaires will ask parenting adults for suggestions and recommendations for continued school program effectiveness and or improvement. Also, report card conferences are opportunities for families to participate in discussions relating to the education of their child. Memphis Street Academy Charter School will respond to all suggestions and recommendations as soon as practically possible.

Part 4: Agreement

This Title 1 Parent Involvement Policy is approved and adopted for the school year 2016-2017

I. Memphis Street Academy Charter School follows state and federal mandates to ensure the staff members are certified and/or highly qualified.

NCLB’s Highly Qualified Teacher Requirements:

All public school teachers with primary responsibility for direct instruction in one or more of NCLB’s core content areas are required to demonstrate that they satisfy the definition of a “Highly Qualified Teacher.” This requirement includes:

Pre-K to 4th grade unless grandfathered in.

Elementary level (grades K-6) teachers who teach all subjects to a particular grade;

4 -8 and secondary-level (grades 7-12) core content area instructors;

Special education teachers who provide direct instruction in one or more core content areas;

English as a second language (ESL) teachers who provide direct instruction in one or more core content areas; and

Alternative education teachers who provide direct instruction in one or more core content areas.

In Pennsylvania, the NCLB core content areas include English, Reading/Language Arts, Mathematics, Sciences, Foreign Languages, Music and Art, and Social Studies (history, economics, geography, and civics and government).

Pennsylvania’s Definition of Highly Qualified Teacher

To satisfy the definition of a Highly Qualified Teacher, teachers must:

1) Hold at least a bachelor’s degree;

2) Hold a valid Pennsylvania teaching certificate (i.e., Instructional I, Instructional II or Intern certificate but not an emergency permit); and

3) Demonstrate subject matter competency for the core content area they teach.

Generally, all Pennsylvania certified teachers may demonstrate subject matter competency through having passed a content area test in the subject area of their teaching assignment. Middle and Secondary level teachers may also demonstrate competency by having completed a content area major or a graduate degree in the subject area of assignment.

Additionally, experienced teachers (i.e., one or more years of teaching experience) may demonstrate subject matter competency through having attained National Board for Professional Teaching Standards (NBPTS) Certification in the subject area of their teaching assignment.

For Charter School Teachers

All Pennsylvania charter schools must meet the requirements of Pennsylvania’s charter school law, including the requirement that 75% of the charter school’s professional staff hold appropriate state certification. Additionally, Pennsylvania charter schools must meet the federal law’s Highly Qualified Teacher requirements. Under NCLB, Charter school teachers must hold at least a bachelor’s degree and must demonstrate competence in the core content areas in which they teach. NCLB further provides that charter school teachers must meet the certification requirements established in the State’s public charter school law, which may differ from the requirements for full State certification.

In Pennsylvania, 75% of professional staff in a charter school must be certified and 25% can be non-certified. In order to be highly qualified, all charter school teachers of core content subjects at all grade levels, whether or not they hold state certification, must:

1) hold at least a bachelor’s degree and

2) demonstrate subject matter competence in each core content area and grade level at which they teach.

Methods to Demonstrate Subject Matter Competency:

1. PRAXIS -- All Pennsylvania teachers may demonstrate subject matter competency through having passed the appropriate PRAXIS content area test in the subject area of their teaching assignment.

2. Academic Major/ Graduate Degree -- Middle and Secondary level teachers may also demonstrate competency by having completed a content area major or a graduate degree in the subject area of their teaching assignment.

3. National Board for Professional Teaching Standards --Teachers with 3 or more years teaching experience may demonstrate subject matter competency through having attained National Board for Professional Teaching Standards (NBPTS) Certification in the core content area of their teaching assignment.

4. HOUSSE -- Experienced teachers (i.e., one or more years of teaching experience) may demonstrate subject matter competency through completing Pennsylvania’s HOUSSE programs. These programs are Pennsylvania’s High Objective Uniform State Standard of Evaluation (HOUSSE) pursuant to NCLB (Section 9101(23)(C)). The following Pennsylvania HOUSSE programs permit certain experienced teachers of core content areas to demonstrate competency and obtain Highly Qualified status:

Bridge Certification Program (NOW CLOSED FOR NEW PARTICIPANTS);

State-level HOUSSE (ONLY applicable to PA Elementary Education certified teachers who received their certification before 1988 when PA implemented teacher testing requirements)

HOUSSE HQT Designation (100-point matrix)

HQT Documentation Required from Charter Schools and Charter School Teachers

1. Documentation of Bachelor’s Degree

• Official transcript from accredited college/university

2. Documentation Options for Demonstrating Subject Matter Competency

PRAXIS – Official Test Results from ETS – 2 options:

• Electronic Report direct from ETS

• Official paper copy presented by educator in sealed ETS envelope

Academic Major/ Graduate Degree -- Official transcript from accredited college/university

National Board for Professional Teaching Standards – Copy of valid NBPTS certificate.

Bridge Certification Program (Verification on PDE TCS system)

HOUSSE HQT Designation (100-point matrix)

Completed matrix signed by charter school teacher and verified by charter school CEO.

State-level HOUSSE (ONLY applicable to PA Elementary Education certified teachers who received their certification before 1988 when PA implemented teacher testing requirements – verification on PDE TCS system)

II. Memphis Street Academy Charter School requires:

  1. All content area teachers employed by the LEA are highly qualified.
  2. All instructional paraprofessionals supported by Title 1 are highly qualified.
  3. Parents are notified annually that they may request information regarding the professional qualifications of their child’s teacher(s) and of paraprofessionals who provide instructional services to their children.
  4. Parents are notified if their child is assigned to or being taught for four or more consecutive weeks by a teacher who is not highly qualified in a core academic area.

Social Networking and Social Media Policy

Purpose: Memphis Street Academy Charter School recognizes that many individuals, including scholars, have embraced social networking and social media as a fun and rewarding way to share one’s life and opinions with family, friends and fellow scholars. “Social media” means any form of online posting, publication or presence that allows end users to engage in multi-directional conversations. Social media includes, but is not limited to, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, blogs, wikis, MySpace, Second Life, social bookmarking, document sharing and E-mail.

Engaging in such activity, however, carries with it certain risks and/or responsibilities – even though performed away from school or using a computer or other device that was neither supplied by MSA nor connected to the school network.

Although MSA's regulation of scholar activities is generally confined to the boundaries of the school, while school is in session or during a school-based or school-sponsored activity, scholars and their parents must nevertheless be aware that inappropriate behavior at scholar activities can and will be given consequences by MSA staff if warranted even though the conduct occurred off school premises, not on school-time, through the use of a personally-owned computer or other device, and/or on a non-school-owned or operated Internet or social networking site.

The purposes of this policy is to provide clarity regarding prohibited use of social networking and social media which may be subject to punishment up to, and including expulsion, and to provide scholars and their parents with general guidelines for using social media.

Prohibited Use of Social Networking and Social Media

  1. At no time during school or upon school premises, whether using school computer equipment or a personal computing device brought to school, may scholars access any social networking site unless specifically authorized to do so by the scholar’s teacher for a legitimate educational purpose.
  2. Unless specifically authorized by the administration, no scholar may represent himself or herself as a spokesperson for or on behalf of MSA.
  3. No electronic communication between any scholar and teacher is allowed through any social networking site. Allowable electronic contact between students and teachers shall be confined to E-mail on the school’s network, and only for a legitimate educational or school-business purpose.
  4. Just as MSA does not tolerate bullying, cyber-bullying, intimidation, harassment, obscene or derogatory language, etc., MSA also will not tolerate any scholar’s misuse of social media -- regardless of the location of the conduct, or occurrence after school hours -- if the conduct threatens another school community member, amounts to bullying and/or harassment, or otherwise substantially disrupts the school or adversely affects another member of our Caring School Community. MSA thus prohibits and may legitimately regulate and punish off-campus behavior (including misuse of social networking or social media) that creates a foreseeable risk of reaching school property or impacting the school environment and which causes a material and substantial disruption or interference with the school’s work, operation or discipline, or substantially collides with or invades the rights of others to be secure and to be let alone.

Accountability

The potential sanction for a violation of MSA’s Social Networking and Social Media Policy is dependent upon the nature of the posting and the severity of the offense. If the posting constitutes a serious offense such as, but not limited to, bullying or cyber-bullying, harassing or intimidating any member of the school community, or threatening scholars or school personnel with assault then the appropriate consequence may be imposed, including long-term out-of-school suspension, expulsion and/or referral to law enforcement officials.

General Guidelines for Scholars Using Social Media and Social Networking

  • Consult the Family Guidebook. Be aware that all existing policies and behavior guidelines extend to school-related activities in the online environment as well as on school premises.
  • Be respectful. Remember that you are a member of a “Caring School Community” with responsibility for behaving in a manner that helps promote a school environment that is caring, nurturing, safe, orderly, and conducive to learning and personal and social development. Scholars are a diverse group of people with many different backgrounds, customs, viewpoints and beliefs. Communications which are pornographic, racist, threatening or bullying are never appropriate. Broad generalizations (“all teachers ...”; “all scholars ...”) are almost never accurate.
  • Be reflective. Think before you post online. If you are upset or angry, take time to cool down. Read, then Reply. Do not skim statements and respond. Try to understand the thoughts of another before you comment on them.

Exercise good judgment. Think about the type of image that you want to convey when posting to social networks and social media sites. How you represent yourself online should be comparable to how you wish to present yourself to others, consistent with the purpose and mission of MSA.

Be transparent. Do not misrepresent who you are. Never assume another’s identity.

Be cautious how you setup your profile, bio, avatar, etc. The same guidelines apply to this information as well as the substantive content you post. Do not post on blogs, wikis or other social media any identifying personal information such as full names, addresses or phone numbers.

Keep confidences. Respect the power of public media, and do not violate the privacy of others. Social media may seem private, but it is highly public and durable. What you post will be viewed and archived permanently online once you hit the “publish” button.

Do not threaten, harass or bully others using social media. You are responsible for your statements and can be held personally accountable by the school and subjected to discipline under its Code of Conduct, as well as criminally or civilly liable for your statements.

Use appropriate language. Threatening, derogatory, obscene, insulting, inflammatory or bullying language is never appropriate.

Be factual. Add to the information available to others, and provide value. Think about what you have to offer, whether it is thoughtful, relevant and based in fact. Do not Spam. Meaningless messages, mass messages or repetitive messages are not appropriate.

Do not plagiarize. Do not copy the work of others. Follow copyright law. Whenever quoting or relying on another’s work, give proper citation to your source. Develop and write your own thoughts.

Be aware that photographs taken by professional photographers cannot be scanned and used on the Internet without the photographer’s permission -- even if they are photos of you and for which you paid. It is not uncommon for photographers to seek compensation for “digital rights” to photos. When uploading digital pictures or avatars that represent yourself, be sure you select a school- appropriate image. Do not utilize protected images.

Accept responsibility. If you make a mistake, correct it quickly. If someone correctly points out that you made a mistake, own up to it. Apologize, if an apology is owed.

Write well. When posting to social networking or other social media sites, your comments convey a public image of you. Therefore, express yourself effectively. Use proper grammar, capitalization and punctuation. Check spelling, avoid slang and excessive abbreviations.

Be wise. People often share too much information electronically. Those who reveal the names of their pets, parents, or other details may give hackers the clues to passwords. Information about planned vacations can be used by burglars. Think about how information can be used and misused.

Do not hack. Never access someone else’s identity or account, or restricted sources of information.

Contact someone immediately, such as your parents, School Administration or the police, if you are threatened, harassed or bullied.

General Guidelines for PARENTS

· Discourage rumors. Do not rely upon or pass on unsubstantiated information or gossip. If information seems unlikely or inflammatory, when in doubt, go directly to the source.

· Respect confidentiality. Many issues involving other families and scholars, or personnel issues, are legitimately confidential.

· Raise and debate issues constructively. Schools often face legitimate controversies. MSA respects and solicits parent voices in addressing such issues. You are invited and encouraged to raise your concerns with the school’s Administration and/or through attending an open meeting of the Board of Trustees and participating in the “public comment” session of the meeting.

The CEO retains the right to amend this guidebook for just cause. Parents will be given prompt notification if changes are made.


Please read this document carefully. Your signature and the signature of your scholar is required identifying that you have read and discussed the Internet Acceptable Use Agreement with your scholar.

Internet access is available to scholars and teachers at Memphis Street Academy Charter School.

We are very pleased to bring this access to Memphis Street Academy Charter and believe the Internet offers vast, diverse, and unique resources to both scholars and teachers. Our goal in providing this service to teachers and scholars is to promote educational excellence in schools by facilitating resource sharing, innovation, and communication.

The signature(s) at the end of this book is (are) legally binding and indicates the party (parties) who signed has (have) read the terms and conditions carefully and understand(s) their significance.

Technology is a valuable and real world educational tool. The policy outlined below applies to all technology use including but not limited to Internet use. The Acceptable Use Policy for Technology applies to all students, staff, and volunteers allowed access to school technology resources.

We recognize that the digital world allows anytime, anywhere access. Uses mentioned in this policy apply to inside the school use and may in certain instances apply to personal use of technology outside of the school. Where personal outside use of technology threatens a likelihood of substantial disruption in school, including harming or interfering with the rights of other scholars or staff to participate in school, these activities may be viewed as a violation of the Acceptable Use Policy and may be subject to disciplinary measures. The types of electronic and digital communication references in this Acceptable Use Policy include, but are not limited to, social networking sites, cell phones, digital cameras, text messages, email, voice messages, chat rooms and instant messaging.

Memphis Street Academy Charter School’s goal is to prepare its members for life in a digital global community. To this end, the school will:

1. Integrate technology with project-based learning to enhance learning

2. Encourage critical thinking, communication and problem solving skills

3. Provide a variety of technology tools and related technology skills

Our school will make every effort to provide a safe environment for learning. School technology is to be used to enhance student learning.

Copyright/Intellectual Property Identity: All sources obtained for scholar work must be properly cited. Users are to respect the rights of and the intellectual property of others in accordance with Federal Copyright Law. Transferring copyrighted material to and from a school without expressed permission from the owner is a violation of the Federal Law.

Users must adhere to the school policy that may further define uses of mobile devices. If a particular mobile device is to be used for educational purposes, the school and/or administration will provide the parameters for use.

Examples of Unacceptable Uses-users are NOT to:

· Use technology to harass, threaten, deceive, intimidate, offend, embarrass, or annoy an individual.

· Post, publish, or display any defamatory, inaccurate, violent, abusive, profane, sexually oriented material. Users must not use obscene, profane, lewd, vulgar, rude or threatening language.

· Use a photograph, image, video of any scholar or employee without express permission of that individual and the principal.

· Create any site, post any photo, image or video of another person without express permission of that individual and the principal.

· Attempt to circumvent the system security.

· Visit a site know for unacceptable material or any material that is not in support of our educational goals.

· Visit social networking sites, gaming sites, except for educational purposes under teacher supervision.

· Transmit any material that violation of any local, federal, and state laws. This includes copyrighted material, licensed material and obscene material.

Reporting: Users must report immediately any damaged, or change to the school’s hardware that is noticed by the user.

Administrative Rights: The administration has the right to monitor scholar use of computers, and computer accessed content. The administration reserves the right to amend, or add to this policy at any time without notice.

Policy Violations: Violation of the above school rules will be dealt with by the administration of the school. Violation of these rules may result in any or all of the following:

1. Loss of school network, computer and Internet access.

2. Issuance of detentions.

3. Disciplinary action including, but not limited to, a hearing before the Board of Trustees and/or legal action by the school, including out-of-school suspension and expulsion.

4. Staff/parent contact for student misuse.

5. Confiscation of inappropriate item(s).

6. Restitution/restoration.

7. The CEO reserves the right to establish additional rules and take appropriate actions to implement this policy.

I understand and will abide by the above Internet Use Agreement. I further understand that any violation of the regulations above is unethical and may constitute a criminal offense. Should I commit any violation, my access privileges may be revoked, school disciplinary action may be taken, and/or appropriate legal action may be sought.

User's Full Name: __________________________________

User Signature: ___________________________________

Date: _______________

PARENT OR PARENTING ADULT

As the parent or parenting adult of this scholar, I have read the Internet Use Agreement. I understand that this access is designed for educational purposes. Memphis Street Academy has taken precautions to eliminate controversial material. However, I also recognize it is impossible for Memphis Street Academy to restrict access to all controversial materials and I will not hold them responsible for materials acquired on the network. Further, I accept full responsibility for supervision if and when my scholar's use is not in a school setting. I hereby give permission to issue an account for my scholar and certify that the information contained on this form is correct.

Parent or Parenting Adult's Name (please print): _________________________

Parent or Parenting Adult's Signature: _________________________________

SPONSORING TEACHER

(Must be signed if the applicant is a scholar)

I have read the Internet Use Agreement and agree to promote this agreement with the scholar. Because the scholar may use the network for individual work or in the context of another class, I cannot be held responsible for the scholar use of the network. As the sponsoring teacher I do agree to instruct the scholar on acceptable use of the network and proper network etiquette.

Teacher's Name (please print): _________________________________

Teacher's Signature: _________________________________________



Please read this agreement carefully before signing.

We have read MSA’s policy regarding care of school property, and acknowledge that textbooks lent to our family are, and remain, school property.

We understand that in order to serve their educational purpose, textbooks must be maintained in good condition. Therefore, we agree to be responsible for the care and prompt return of all textbooks lent to our family by MSA, including keeping the textbooks covered at all times.

We understand, and agree to be responsible for, any assessed penalties for lost or damaged textbooks beyond ordinary wear and tear, which may be the imposition of one or more of the following: a charge for replacement of the textbook; a requirement that the scholar perform a prescribed number of hours of school service; delayed receipt of a report card; and/or loss of privileges such as participation in sports or other extracurricular activities and other special events.

Furthermore, we understand that any such penalty/penalties must be satisfied before a replacement textbook will be issued.

SCHOLAR

I understand and will abide by the above Textbook Use Agreement. I promise to take good care of any textbook lent to me, and to return it in a timely manner and in good condition.

Scholar's Full Name: __________________________________

Scholar’s Signature: ___________________________________

Date: _______________

PARENT OR PARENTING ADULT

As the parent or parenting adult of this scholar, I have read the Textbook Use Agreement. I understand that textbooks are the property of Memphis Street Academy, and that I am responsible for any loss or damage to textbooks lent to this scholar. Further, I understand and acknowledge the penalties that may be assessed for lost or damaged textbooks, and agree to be responsible for payment of any such penalties.

Parent or Parenting Adult's Name (please print): _________________________

Parent or Parenting Adult's Signature: _________________________________

FAMILY GUIDEBOOK COMPACT SIGNATURE PAGE 2016-2017

PLEASE SIGN THIS PAGE AND RETURN TO SCHOOL WITHIN 5 DAYS OF RECEIVING THIS FAMILY GUIDEBOOK

We have read this 2016-2017 Family Guidebook and have reviewed it as a family. We understand the written policies and procedures of Memphis Street Academy Charter School. We will work to support them as well as the mission of Memphis Street Academy Charter School.

We understand that all scholars will be held accountable for their behavior, and that failure to abide by the school’s policies and the Code of Scholar Conduct can result in disciplinary action.

The family of ____________________________________________

Signature of Parent/Parenting Adult

__________________________________________

__________________________________________

Signature of Scholar(s)

__________________________________________

__________________________________________

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