Saint Francis Catholic Secondary School

Ontario Code Of Conduct

A school should be a place that promotes responsibility, respect, civility, and academic excellence in a safe learning and teaching environment. A positive school climate exists when all members of the school community feel safe, comfortable, and accepted. All students, parents, teachers, and staff members have the right to be safe, and to feel safe, in their school community. With this right comes the responsibility to contribute to a positive school climate.

The promotion of strategies and initiatives such as Student Success and character development, along with the employment of prevention and intervention strategies to address inappropriate behaviour, fosters a positive school climate that supports academic achievement for all students.

The provincial Code of Conduct sets clear provincial standards of behaviour. These standards of behaviour apply not only to students, but also to all individuals involved in the publicly funded school system – parents, volunteers, teachers, and other staff members – whether they are on school property, on school buses, at school-related events or activities, or in other circumstances that could have an impact on the school climate. Responsible citizenship involves appropriate participation in the civic life of the school community. Active and engaged citizens are aware of their rights, but more importantly, they accept responsibility for protecting their rights and the rights of others.

GUIDING PRINCIPLES & PURPOSES OF THE CODE

All members of the school community are:

  • to be treated with respect and dignity, especially persons in
    positions of authority
  • to promote responsible citizenship by encouraging appropriate
    participation in the civic life of the school community
  • to maintain an environment where conflict and difference can be
    addressed in a manner characterized by respect and civility
  • to encourage the use of non-violent means to resolve conflict
  • to promote the safety of people in the schools
  • to discourage the use of alcohol and illegal drugs

STUDENTS

Students are to be treated with respect and dignity. In return, they
must demonstrate respect for themselves, for others and for the
responsibilities of citizenship through acceptable behaviour. Respect and
responsibility are demonstrated when a student:

  • comes to school prepared, on time and ready to learn
  • shows respect for themselves, for others and for those in authority
  • refrains from bringing anything to school that may compromise the
    safety of others
  • follows the established rules and takes responsibility for his or her
    own action

PARENTS

Parents play an important role in the education of their children, and
can support the efforts of school staff in maintaining a safe and
respectful learning environment for all students. Parents fulfill their role
when they:

  • show an active interest in their child’s school work and progress
  • communicate regularly with the school
  • help their child be neat, appropriately dressed and prepared for
    school
  • ensure that their child attends school regularly and on time
  • promptly report to the school their child’s absence or late arrival
  • show that they are familiar with the provincial Code of Conduct, the
    Board’s code of conduct, and school rules
  • encourage and assist their child in following the rules of behaviour
  • assist school staff in dealing with disciplinary issues involving their
    child

COMMUNITY PARTNERS AND THE POLICY

The police play an essential role in making our schools and communities
safer.

Police investigate incidents in accordance with the protocol developed
with the local school board. These protocols are based on a provincial
model developed by the Ministry of the Solicitor General and the
Ministry of Education.

STANDARDS OF BEHAVIOUR

EXPULSION INFRACTIONS

Expulsion is the removal of a student by the Board from the regular
services of the Board for reasons as set out in the Education Act and by
the Expulsion Policy of the Niagara Catholic District School Board.
Principals may recommend to the Committee of the Board expulsions of
students from their schools.

When a principal has reasonable grounds to believe that a student has
committed one or more infractions outlined below on school property,
during a school-related activity or event, and/or in circumstances where
the infraction has an impact on the school climate, the principal will
suspend the student. The principal will also contact the police consistent
with the Police and School Response Protocol if the infraction the
student is suspected of committing requires such contact. When in
doubt, the principal will consult with his or her Superintendent.

The enumerated activities are:

  • possessing a weapon, including possessing a firearm
  • using a weapon to cause or to threaten bodily harm to another
    person
  • committing physical assault on another person that causes bodily
    harm requiring treatment by a medical practitioner
  • committing sexual assault
  • trafficking in weapons, illegal and/or controlled substances
  • committing robbery
  • giving alcohol to a minor
  • a pattern of behaviour that is so inappropriate that the student’s
    continued presence is injurious to the effective learning and/or
    working environment of others
  • activities engaged in by the student on or off school property that
    cause the student’s continuing presence in the school to create an
    unacceptable risk to the physical or mental well-being of other
    person(s) in the school or Board
  • activities engaged in by the student on or off school property that
    have caused extensive damage to the property of the Board or to
    goods that are/were on Board property
  • the student has demonstrated through a pattern of behaviour that
    s/he has not prospered by the instruction available to him or her
    and that s/he is persistently resistant to making changes in
    behaviour which would enable him or her to prosper
  • any act considered by the principal to be a serious violation of the
    Board or school Code of Conduct. This includes a single act, incident
    or infraction considered by the principal to be a serious breach of
    the expectations of student behaviour even thought the student has
    no history of discipline or behaviour intervention, or no relevant
    history

RESPECT, CIVILITY & RESPONSIBLE CITIZENSHIP

All members of the school community must:

  • respect and comply with all applicable federal, provincial and
    municipal laws
  • demonstrate honesty and integrity
  • respect differences in people, their ideas and opinions
  • treat one another with dignity and respect at all times, and
    especially when there is disagreement
  • respect and treat others fairly, regardless of, for example, race,
    ancestry, place of origin, colour, ethnic origin, citizenship, religion,
    gender, sexual orientation, age, or disability
  • respect the rights of others
  • show proper care and regard for school property and the property of
    others
  • take appropriate measures to help those in need
  • respect all members of the school community, especially persons in
    positions of authority
  • respect the need of others to work in an environment that is
    conducive to learning and teaching
  • seek assistance from a member of the school staff, if necessary, to
    resolve conflict peacefully
  • not swear at a teacher or at another person in a position of
    authority

SAFETY

All members of the school community must not:

  • be in possession of any weapon, including firearms
  • cause injury to any person with an object
  • use any object to threaten or intimidate another person; not be in
    possession of, or under the influence of, or provide others with,
    alcohol or illegal drugs
  • inflict or encourage others to inflict bodily harm on another person
  • engage in bullying behaviours
  • commit sexual assault
  • traffic weapons or illegal drugs
  • give alcohol to a minor
  • commit robbery
  • engage in hate propaganda and other forms of behaviour motivated
    by hate or bias
  • commit an act of vandalism that causes extensive damage to school
    property or to property located on the premises of the school

SUSPENSION INFRACTIONS

When a principal’s investigation of an incident, which should include
consultation with the adult student or the student’s parent/guardian and
student, determines that a student has committed one or more
infractions outlined below on school property, during a school-related
activity or event, and/or in circumstances where the infraction has an
impact on the school climate, a principal will consider whether that
student should be suspended, taking into account any mitigating and
other factors that might be applicable in the circumstances.

(As per NCDSB STUDENT SUSPENSION POLICY, a progressive discipline
approach will be followed.)

The principal will also contact the police consistent with the Police and
School Response Protocol if the infraction the student is suspected of
committing requires such contact. When in doubt, the principal will
consult with his or her Superintendent.

The infractions for which a suspension may be imposed by the principal
include:

    • uttering a threat to inflict serious bodily harm on another person
    • possessing alcohol, illegal and/or restricted drugs
    • being under the influence of alcohol, illegal and/or controlled

substances without a valid prescription

  • swearing at a teacher or at another person in a position of authority
  • committing an act of vandalism that causes extensive damage to
    school property at the student’s school or to property located on the
    premises of the student’s school
  • persistent truancy
  • habitual neglect of duty
  • use of profane, vulgar, or improper language
  • bullying
  • conduct injurious to the moral tone of the school
  • persistent opposition to authority
  • conduct injurious to the physical or mental well-being of any
    member of the school community
  • any act considered by the principal to be contrary to the Board or
    school Code of Conduct

A student may be suspended only once for any one instance of an
infraction and may be suspended for a minimum of one (1) school day
and a maximum of twenty (20) school days.

BULLYING PREVENTION AND INTERVENTION

Bullying is typically a form of repeated, persistent, aggressive behaviour
that is directed at an individual and is intended to cause (or should be
known to cause) fear, distress and /or harm to another person’s body,
feelings, self-esteem, or reputation. Bullying occurs in a context where
there is real or perceived power imbalance.

Bullying has been identified as a widespread problem with serious
implications for students, schools, and the entire community.

Bullying is predominantly a learned behaviour, which must be addressed
by teaching students to build positive relationships, and develop
effective communication strategies. Educators will endeavour to create
opportunities to model and encourage behaviours and interactions that
help create a classroom and positive school climate.

Bullying will not be accepted on school property, at school-related
activities, on school buses, or in any other circumstances where
engaging in bullying will have a negative impact on the school climate.

POSITIVE SCHOOL CLIMATE

A positive school climate exists when all members of the school
community feel safe, comfortable, and accepted. To help achieve a
positive school environment in their schools, the Niagara Catholic
District School Board and its schools will actively promote and support
positive behaviours that reflect their catholic gospel values. They should
also endeavour to ensure that parents and members of the broader
community are involved in the school community.

The Niagara Catholic District School Board and its schools will actively
promote a positive school climate in their Schools. The following are
some characteristics of a positive school climate:

Students and staff feel safe and are safe.

Healthy and inclusionary relationships are promoted.

Students are encouraged to be positive leaders in their school
community.

All partners are actively engaged.

Bully prevention messages are reinforced through programs addressing
discrimination based on such factors as age, race, sexual orientation,
gender, faith, disability, ethnicity, and socio-economic disadvantage.

Improvement of learning outcomes for all students is emphasized.

Bullying may include but is not limited to:

Verbal Physical
Name-Calling Hitting
Insults Kicking
Racist Comments Spitting
Harassment Pushing
Sexist Comments Inappropiate Gestures
Teasing/Taunting Tripping
Threating/Extortion Stealing
Social/Emotional Technology
Relational Bullying Cyber Bullying
Manipulating Friendships Internet Misuse
Gossip Text Messages
Exclusion Digital Photos
Intimidation Chat Lines
Written Notes Websites
Making False Statements Telephone (3 Way Calling)

In recognition of the importance of addressing bullying, which can have
a significant impact on student safety, learning, and the school climate,
bullying has been added to the list of infractions for which suspension
must be considered.

PREVENTION AND INTERVENTION STRATEGIES

STUDENTS ARE EXPECTED TO:

  • promote a safe, caring and positive environment for all by
    developing an awareness of bullying issues
  • refuse to bully others or to be a bystander to acts of bullying
  • report all acts of bullying that they may experience or observe to
    appropriate school personnel for assistance
  • assist and co-operate in the implementation of school-wide bully
    prevention initiatives

PARENTS/VISITORS/COMMUNITY MEMBERS ARE EXPECTED TO:

  • promote a safe, caring and positive environment for all by
    developing an awareness of bullying issues
  • inform the school if bullying is suspected
  • encourage their children to discuss any incidents of bullying and
    reinforce the need to speak out
  • support the school when resolving identified incidents of bullying
  • support the school through Catholic School Councils, in promoting
    local school bully prevention initiatives
  • support the school in training and communication strategies for
    members of the school community

Current Legislation and the Provincial Code of Conduct require all
schools in consultation with their Catholic School Councils, staff,
students and parents to develop local Codes of Conduct. These locally
developed Codes of Conduct shall be in compliance with the Ministry’s
and the Board’s Code of Conduct.

The Niagara Catholic District School Board requires that each school
include and address the following bullying prevention statement in their
local school Code of Conduct.

In keeping with the teachings of Christ, St. Francis
Catholic Secondary School will strive to create a safe,
caring and supportive school environment, free of
bullying, for all members of the school community.

SAFE SCHOOL TEAM

Each school has in place a safe school team responsible for school
safety that is composed of at least one student (where appropriate),
parent, teacher, support staff member, a community partner, and the
principal. The team must have a staff chair.

Through the development of school level plans, which address
prevention and intervention strategies, schools will implement a bullying
prevention and intervention plan.

Schools must also establish a monitoring and review process to
determine the effectiveness of their ullying prevention and intervention
plans (i.e. school improvement plans).

ACCESS TO SCHOOL PREMISES

The following persons are permitted access:

  • pupil enrolled in the school
  • parent/guardian of such pupil
  • person employed or retained by Board
  • person on premises for lawful purpose

These rights to access do not entitle the person to have access to all
areas of the school.

Conditional Access

  • person invited to attend event, class or meeting
  • person invited by the principal, vice-principal or someone else
    authorized by Board policy to be in the school for specific purpose
    Prohibition from Access
  • anyone whose presence, in the principal’s judgment, is detrimental
    to the safety or well-being of a person on the premises
  • person who fails to report his/her presence in a specified manner

The principal of a school may direct a person to leave the school
premises if the principal believes that the person is prohibited by
regulation or under a Board policy from being there.

FAIR NOTICE

Threat and Risk Assessment

The general purpose of a student threat assessment team in school
jurisdictions is to assist in creating and maintaining an environment
where students, staff, parents and others feel safe. The primary
purpose of a multidisciplinary threat assessment team is to identify
indicators that suggest a student may be moving on a pathway of
justification to use violence and to intervene in such a way to decrease
the risk, prevent injury to self or others, and assist the student in
receiving the help he or she needs to address the issues contributing to
the high-risk student behaviour.

All threatening and high-risk behaviours must be taken seriously and
students engaging in the behaviours must be assessed accordingly. Any
student engaging in threatening and/or high-risk behaviours must be
brought to the attention of the Principal/Vice Principal of the school. In
the majority of the cases, the threat maker needs to be protected from
the target; this is due to the prior victimization that the threat maker
has previously experienced.

For more detailed information on Threat and Risk Assessment, please
refer to the Board website at www.niagaracatholic.ca and proceed to
the Procedures and Protocols, Police and School Board Protocol section
under the Board tab.

For a complete reference to all policies and protocols, please
access the Board website www.niagararacatholic.ca

Family of Schools


Diocese of St. Catharines