Annual Notice of Non-Discrimination
The District offers career and technical programs in the following areas of study:
Agricultural, Food, and Natural Resources
√ Arts, Communications, and Information Systems
√ Applied sciences, technology, engineering, and manufacturing, including transportation, distribution, logistics, architecture, and construction.
√ Health Sciences
√ Human Services, including law, public safety, corrections, security,
government, public administration, and education and training.
√ Business, Finance, Marketing and Management.
NOTICE OF NONDISCRIMINATION
Pursuant to Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 and other applicable state and federal laws, the Cedar Rapids Community School District does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, disability, religion, creed, age (for employment), marital status (for programs), sexual orientation, gender identity, or socioeconomic status (for programs) in any of its education programs, activities, or employment opportunities. This prohibition on discrimination applies to admission and employment.
The District has adopted a grievance procedure for resolving formal and informal Title IX sex discrimination complaints and other discrimination complaints. Inquiries regarding Title IX or the District’s nondiscrimination policy may be referred to the U.S. Department of Education (attn. Assistant Secretary, Office for Civil Rights; 400 Maryland Avenue Southwest, Washington, DC 20202; 800-421-3481; OCR@ed.gov) or the District’s Title IX Coordinator:
Secondary Director of Culture and Climate Transformation/Title IX Coordinator
Educational Leadership & Support Center
2500 Edgewood Rd NW, Cedar Rapids, IA
Objectives For Equal Educational Opportunities For Students
It is the goal of the Board of Education to enhance social, emotional, behavioral, intellectual, and physical well-being of the students enrolled in the District. Students will have the opportunity to use the school and the school’s educational program and services as a means for self-improvement and individual growth. In so doing, the students are expected to conduct themselves in a manner that assures each student the same opportunity.
The Board supports the delivery of the education program and services to students free of discrimination on the basis of race, creed, color, religion, national origin, marital status, socio-economic status, sex, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, genetic information, or disability. This concept of equal educational opportunity serves as a guide for the board and employees in making decisions relating to District facilities, employment, selection of educational materials, equipment, curriculum, and regulations affecting students.
Employees, students and parents will be reminded annually of the District’s written statement in appropriate publications such as calendars, handbooks, newsletters, newspapers or educational brochures.
There is a grievance procedure for processing complaints of discrimination. Inquiries by students regarding compliance with equal educational opportunity and affirmative action laws and policies, including but not limited to complaints of discrimination, shall be directed to the student’s principal or to the Affirmative Action Coordinator for Students/Director of Student Equity by writing to the Affirmative Action Coordinator for Students/Director of Student Equity, Cedar Rapids Community School District, 2500 Edgewood Rd N.W., Cedar Rapids, Iowa, 52405, or by telephoning 319-558-2000.
Inquiries by students regarding compliance with equal educational opportunity and affirmative action laws and policies, including but not limited to complaints of discrimination, may also be directed in writing to the address below or Iowa Dept. of Education, Grimes State Office Bldg., Des Moines, IA. (515) 281-5294. This inquiry or complaint to the federal or state office may be done instead of, or in addition to, an inquiry or complaint at the local level.
Further information and copies of the procedures for filing a complaint are available in the District’s central administrative office and the administrative office in each attendance center and on the District website
CHAPTER 102 – REPORTING CHILD ABUSE
Chapter 102 of the Iowa Administrative Code establishes procedures for investigating incidents of abuse of students by school employees. The procedures include the designation of investigators for the 2021-2022 School Year. The following are the designated Level I investigators for the CRCSD. Any of the following persons may serve as an investigator.
Any person may file a Level I complaint against a Cedar Rapids Community School District employee by completing a Level I complaint form and turning it into his/her building principal. The complaint may be turned in to any of the individuals on the list below. These forms may be obtained in any school’s main office or at the Educational Leadership and Support Center, 2500 Edgewood Road NW, Cedar Rapids, Iowa, in the Human Resources Office.
LEVEL I INVESTIGATORS
Wendy Parker, Executive Director, Student Services – 319/558-2575
Daniel DeVore, Principal, Metro High School – 319/558-2193
Gary Hatfield, Principal, Taft Middle School – 319/558-2243
Greg O’Connell, Principal, West Willow Elementary School – 319/558-2167
Trista Manternach, Principal, Harrison Elementary School – 319/558-2269
Linda Reysack, Principal, Harding Middle School – 319/558-2254
LEVEL II INVESTIGATORS
Cedar Rapids Police Department
Distributed by: Human Resources: 6/2021
Revised: Board Secretary: 6/15/2021
Approved by Board of Education: 6/14/2021
Public Notice: Section 504 Of The Rehabilitation Act
Of 1973/Americans With Disabilities Act
Section 504 and ADA is an Act which prohibits discrimination against persons with a disability by any institution receiving federal financial assistance. These Acts define a person with a disability as anyone whom: has a mental or physical impairment which substantially limits one or more major life activities (major life activities include activities such as caring for one’s self, performing manual tasks, walking, seeing, hearing, speaking, breathing, learning, and working, etc.); has a record of such impairment; or is regarded as having such an impairment.
In order to fulfill obligations under Section 504, the Cedar Rapids Community School District has the responsibility to avoid discrimination in policies and practices regarding its personnel and students. No discrimination against any person with a disability should knowingly be permitted in any of the programs and/or practices of the school system.
The school district has responsibilities under Section 504, which include the obligation to identify, evaluate, and if the student is determined to be eligible under Section 504, to afford access to appropriate educational services.
A parent may request a form to initiate a referral for any student by contacting the principal or Section 504 Coordinator (typically the school counselor) of any school.
If the parent or guardian disagrees with the determination made by the professional staff of the school district, he/she has a right to a hearing with an impartial hearing officer.
If there are any questions, please feel free to contact the Cedar Rapids Community School District Section 504 Compliance Officer (319-558-2000).
In this handbook, the word “parent” also means “guardian” unless otherwise stated. An administrator’s title, such as superintendent or principal, also means that individual’s designee unless otherwise stated. The term “school grounds” includes the school district facilities, school district property, property within the jurisdiction of the school district or school district premises, school-owned or school-operated buses or vehicles and chartered buses. The term “school facilities” includes school district buildings and vehicles. The term “school activities” means all school activities students are involved in whether they are school-sponsored or school-approved, whether they are an event or an activity, or whether they are held on or off school grounds.
Jurisdictional and Behavioral Expectations Statement
The Board, administration and employees expect students to conduct themselves in a manner fitting to their age level and maturity and with respect and consideration for the rights of others. Students, teachers, employees, and visitors are expected to treat each other with respect and courtesy so that all may be safe within the school environment. Inappropriate student conduct may cause material and substantial disruption to the school environment, interfere with the rights of others, or present a threat to the health and safety of students, employees, and visitors on school premises.
The school handbook is an extension of Board policy and is a reflection of the goals and objectives of the Board. The student handbook and District policies, rules and regulations are in effect while students are on school grounds, District property or on property within the jurisdiction of the District; while on school-owned and/or school-operated buses or vehicles or chartered buses; while attending or engaged in school activities; and while away from school grounds if the misconduct directly affects the good order, efficient management and welfare of the District or involves students or staff. District policies, rules and regulations are in effect 12 months a year.
Students shall comply with and abide by the District’s policies, regulations, procedures and student handbook. Students who fail to abide by the District’s policies, regulations, procedures and student handbook will be disciplined for conduct which disrupts or interferes with the education program; conduct which disrupts the orderly and efficient operation of the District or school activity; conduct which disrupts the rights of other students to obtain their education or to participate in school activities; or conduct which interrupts the maintenance of a disciplined atmosphere. Disciplinary measures include, but are not limited to: removal from the classroom, detention, suspension, and expulsion. Discipline can also include prohibition from participating in extracurricular activities, including athletics. The discipline imposed is based upon the facts and circumstances surrounding the incident and the student’s record. A violation of a District policy, regulation, procedure or student handbook may result in disciplinary action and may affect a student’s eligibility to participate in extracurricular activities whether the violation occurred while school was in session or while school was not in session.
The District reserves and retains the right to modify, eliminate or establish District policies, regulations, procedures and student handbook provisions as circumstances warrant, including those contained in the handbook. Students are expected to know and comply with the contents of the handbook. Students or parents with questions or concerns may contact the school’s main office for information about the enforcement of the policies, regulations, procedures or student handbook of the school.
(Code of Iowa Chapter 299A, 299.2, 299.1 and 299.1A)
All children who have reached the age of six and are under sixteen years of age by September 15 are of compulsory attendance age. A child who is age five by September 15 and is enrolled in a school district is also of compulsory age. The only exception to this is if the parent notifies the district, in writing, of their intent to withdraw the child from the school district. A child enrolled in the District who reaches the age of 16 on or after September 15 remains of compulsory age until the end of the regular school calendar. The parent, guardian, or legal/actual custodian of a child who is of compulsory attendance age shall cause the child to attend the public school, an accredited nonpublic school, or receive competent private instruction in accordance with provisions of Iowa Code Chapter 299A during the school year. Exceptions to this regulation must meet the requirements set forth in the current Code of Iowa Chapter 299.2.
Since punctuality and regular attendance are necessary for students to derive optimum benefit from school, students should be required to conform to District and school rules and procedures regarding attendance. These rules and procedures should be as consistent as practicable among and within grade levels throughout the District, and should be administered in such a manner as to serve the best interests of children and to comply with the Code of Iowa.
(Code of Iowa: 279.11)
It is the responsibility of the parent to notify the student’s attendance center as soon as the parent knows the student will not be attending school on that day. The administrator may request evidence or written verification of the student’s reason for absence. Student absences approved by the administrator are excused absences. Excused absences will count as days in attendance for purposes of the truancy law. Excused absences include, but are not limited to, illness, family emergencies, recognized religious observances, appointments that cannot be scheduled outside the school day, and school-sponsored or approved activities.
It is the responsibility of the student to initiate a procedure with the student’s teacher to complete the work missed. Students whose absences are approved will make up the work missed and receive full credit for the missed school work. Students, whose absences are not approved, will make up the work at the discretion of the administrator.
Students who wish to participate in school-sponsored activities must attend school at least one-half day on the day of the activity unless permission has been given by the administrator for the student to be absent.
Responding to Excessive Absenteeism
The appropriate school staff should make an effort to resolve attendance problems through the following procedures:
- Establish contact with parents or guardians;
- Utilize available support staff for the initial investigation;
- Maintain written documentation of absences;
- Involve the school nurse when illness is used as a reason for excessive absenteeism; and Consult with other agencies that may be involved with the family.
After a student has accrued (11) eleven days of absences, for reasons other than a health condition verified by a school nurse and the building level administration has exhausted every means available (phone calls, letters, home visits, etc.) to the school to assure that the student is in regular attendance, the following should occur:
The school administrator will inform the parent/guardian in writing that due to the lack of improvement in the attendance of their child, the school will be referring the student and the parent/guardian to the District truant officer for further action.
A copy of the letter sent to the parent/guardian will then be forwarded to the appropriate District truant officer.
The District truant officer will request a hearing with the parent to mediate a plan of action to correct the attendance problem. The written communication will specify a definite time period for the hearing dates.
If the parent/guardian does not respond, and/or the above plan of action fails to produce results and a student has been absent 11 days in a single trimester, a registered letter will be forwarded to the County Attorney or the school attendance task force and the parent/guardian for further action. A copy will be placed in the student’s file.
The County Attorney’s Office and/or school attendance task force will make the final decision in regards to prosecution or course of action to get and keep the student in school.
(Code of Iowa: 299.1, 299.2, 299.8)
A truant child is one of compulsory attendance age (6-16) who:
fails to attend school anywhere;
fails to attend competent private instruction for 148 days per year;
fails to attend a minimum of 74 days per semester; or
fails to attend a minimum of 49 days per trimester.
Similarly, if a student turns sixteen prior to September 15, he or she is no longer of compulsory attendance age and may seek alternative forms of education without risk to his or her parent. If a student turns sixteen on or after September 15, he or she is compelled to attend during that school year.
Maintenance of Orderly Conduct
Students will obey the lawful instructions of District personnel. Conduct which materially or substantially interferes with the educational process is prohibited. Students at school-sponsored, off-campus events will be governed by District rules and regulations and are subject to the authority of District officials. All persons must, upon request, identify themselves to school staff members in the school buildings, on school grounds, or at school-sponsored events.
A teacher may refer a student who is disruptive or demonstrates inappropriate behavior to the building administrator or designee for appropriate action. In the event the student refuses to comply with the teacher’s directive to report to the office, the teacher may request the assistance of the building administrator or representative. When a student is referred from a class, the administrator/designee will determine the course of action and communicate with the appropriate staff members in a timely manner.
The possession, use, sale, or distribution of alcohol and/or illegal or medically unauthorized substances is strictly prohibited on school grounds, at school events, or in any situation where the school is responsible for the conduct and well-being of students.
Conduct On School District Premises
The Board expects that students, employees and visitors will treat each other with respect, engage in responsible behavior, exercise self-discipline and model fairness, equity and civility. Individuals violating this policy will be subject to discipline or other appropriate sanctions.
Individuals are permitted to attend District sponsored or approved activities or visit District premises only as guests of the District, and, as a condition, they must comply with the District’s policies, regulations, and procedures. Individuals will not be allowed to interfere with or disrupt the educational program or activity. Visitors, like the participants, are expected to display mature, responsible behavior. The failure of individuals to do so is not only disruptive, but embarrassing to the students, the District, and the entire community.
To protect the rights of students to participate in the educational program or activities without fear of interference or disruption and to permit the school officials, employees and activity sponsors and officials to perform their duties without interference or disruption, the following provisions are in effect:
Abusive conduct of individuals, either verbal or physical, directed at students, school officials, employees, officials and activity sponsors of sponsored or approved activities or at other individuals will not be tolerated on school premises or at school approved activities.
Verbal or physical conduct of individuals that interferes with the performance of students, school officials, employees, officials and activity sponsors of sponsored or approved activities will not be tolerated on school premises or at school approved activities.
The use of vulgar, obscene or demeaning expression directed at students, school officials, employees, officials and activity sponsors of sponsored or approved activities participating in a sponsored or approved activity or at other individuals will not be tolerated on school premises or at school approved activities.
Prohibited behaviors include any behaviors that are physically or verbally threatening, either overtly or implicitly, as well as behaviors that are coercive, intimidating, violent or harassing. Examples of prohibited behavior include, but are not limited to, use of profanity, personally insulting remarks, attacks on a person’s ethnicity, race, gender, nationality, religion, age, sexual orientation or behavior that is out of control. Such interactions could occur in telephone conversations, voice mail messages, face-to-face conversations, written letters, electronic messages, and/or various social media websites.
The Board of Education believes firearms and other weapons on District property or at school-sponsored activities cause material and substantial disruption to the school environment and present a threat to the health and safety of students, employees, and visitors. Therefore, the Board prohibits firearms and other weapons on District property or at school sponsored activities. Any object which could be used to injure or threaten another person and which has no school-related purpose may be considered a weapon. This includes specifically, but is not limited to, firearms of all types, knives of all types, fireworks, metal pipes, metal knuckles, and explosives. The term “firearm” includes, but is not limited to, any weapon which is designed to expel a projectile by the action of an explosive, the frame or receiver of any such weapon, a muffler or silencer for such a weapon, or any explosive, incendiary, or poison gas. An object that serves as a facsimile of a weapon may be considered a weapon in the enforcement of this policy. An object that has a school-related purpose but is used to threaten or inflict injury may also be considered a weapon. Weapons shall be confiscated from persons who bring them onto District property or to school-sponsored activities.
If an individual demonstrates prohibitive behavior on District premises, the individual may be removed by the appropriate District and/or School Administrator. Law enforcement may be contacted for assistance.
Individuals removed from school premises may follow the Board’s complaint procedures should they choose to do so. The exclusion is in effect should the individual choose to appeal the decision of the superintendent. The term “individual” as used in the policy also includes students and employees.
If an individual has been notified of exclusion and thereafter tries to enter a school building or attends a sponsored or approved activity, the individual will be advised that his/her attendance will result in prosecution. The District may obtain a court order for permanent exclusion from the school building or from future school sponsored or approved activities.
Harassment and bullying of students and employees are against federal, state, and local policy and are not tolerated by the Cedar Rapids Community School District. The District is committed to providing all students with a safe and civil school environment in which all members of the school community are treated with dignity and respect. Policies, procedures, and practices that are designed to reduce and eliminate bullying and harassment and to deal with incidents of bullying and harassment are in place. Bullying and harassment of students by other students, by school employees, and by volunteers who have direct contact with students will not be tolerated in the school or school District.
The District prohibits harassment, bullying, hazing, or any other victimization of students, based on any of the following: actual or perceived traits or characteristics, including but not limited to, age, color, creed, national origin, race, religion, marital status, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, physical attributes, physical or mental ability or disability, ancestry, political party preference, political belief, socioeconomic status, or familial status. Harassment against employees based upon the employee’s, race, color, creed, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, religion, age, or disability is also prohibited.
This policy is in effect while students or employees are on property within the jurisdiction of the District; while on school-owned or school-operated vehicles; while attending or engaged in school-sponsored activities; and while away from school grounds if bullying, hazing, or any other victimization of students directly affects the good order, efficient management, and welfare of the school or school District.
If, after an investigation, a student is found to be in violation of this policy, the student may be disciplined by appropriate measures, which may include suspension or expulsion. If after an investigation a school employee is found to be in violation of this policy, the employee shall be disciplined by appropriate measures, which may include termination. If, after an investigation, a school volunteer is found to be in violation of this policy, the volunteer shall be subject to appropriate measures which may include exclusion from school grounds. A “volunteer” is an individual who has regular, significant contact with students.
Sexual Offender Registry
Iowa law requires sexual offenders to be registered with the State. Parents/guardians seeking information about sex offenders residing in the community are directed to the state Web site at www.iowasexoffender.com.
Search and Seizure
(Code of Iowa: Chapter 808a.10)
The only staff members with authority to conduct searches and/or seize items are employees who are certified administrators and School Resource Officers (SRO), unless there is an emergency. In emergencies, such as situations in which the health or safety of a student or employee is compromised, another school official may conduct a search and/or seize items.
1)Lockers and desks remain at all times the property of the District and are, therefore, subject to maintenance inspections.
2)The District has a reasonable and valid interest in ensuring the lockers and desks are properly maintained. For this reason, lockers and desks are subject to unannounced inspections and students have no legitimate expectations of privacy in a locker or desk.
3)Periodic inspections of all or a random selection of lockers or desks may be conducted in the presence of the student or another individual.
4)Contraband discovered during a maintenance search shall be confiscated and the student may be disciplined. Items of contraband include, but are not limited to, non-prescription medications; controlled substances such as marijuana, cocaine, amphetamines, and barbiturates; apparatus used for the administration of controlled substances; tobacco; alcoholic beverages; weapons; explosives; poisons; and stolen property.
5)The contents of a student’s locker or desk may be searched when there is reasonable and articulable suspicion that a District policy, rule, regulation or law has been violated. Such searches should be conducted in the presence of another adult witness when feasible
B. Personal Searches
1)A student’s person and/or personal effects (e.g., purse, book bag, cell phone or other electronic device, or other container used for carrying personal items) may be searched when there is reasonable and articulable suspicion that a District policy, rule, regulation or law has been violated.
Reasonable suspicion may be formed by considering such factors as:
a. eyewitness observations by school personnel;
b. information received from reliable sources;
c. suspicious behavior by the student; or
d. as a contracted condition of student’s attendance.
A. search is reasonable in scope when the measures adopted are reasonably related to the objectives of the search. Reasonableness of scope or intrusiveness may be determined based on:
a. the age of the student;
b. the nature of the infraction; and
c. the existence of an emergency situation requiring the search without delay.
2)Personally intrusive searches shall require more compelling circumstances to be considered reasonable. When feasible, the administrator or SRO will attempt to notify the parent/guardian of the impending search
a. A pat-down search or a search of a student’s garments (including shoes) will be conducted in private by a school official of the same gender with another adult witness present.
b. Strip searches, body cavity searches, and the use of a drug-sniffing animal to search a student’s body are not permitted.
c. Every reasonable effort should be made to have the student voluntarily produce contraband materials thought to be concealed. Force should not be used when students resist search efforts unless there is strong cause to believe the contraband constitutes an immediate threat to the student or other persons. In the event a student resists or appears to resist a search, an effort should be made to detain the student and the police should be called.
C. Vehicle Searches
Students are permitted to park on school premises as a matter of privilege, not of right. Designated school employees may conduct routine patrols of the student parking lots. The interior of a student’s vehicle, when on school premises, may be searched if there is a reasonable and articulable suspicion to believe that a District policy, rule, regulation or law has been violated. (Reasonable suspicion is defined in Section B.) The student driver or another individual shall be present whenever practical during the search.
D. Searches by Law Enforcement Officers
The search of a student or of protected student areas by a law enforcement officer or by an administrator at the invitation or direction of such an officer shall be governed by statutory and common law requirements
Illegal Items Found in School or in Students’ Possession
Students are prohibited from distributing, dispensing, manufacturing, possessing, using, and being under the influence of alcohol, drugs or look-a-like substances; and possessing or using tobacco, tobacco products or look-a-like substances. Weapons are not allowed on school grounds or at school activities including hunting rifles even if unloaded and locked in cars with the exception of weapons in the control of law enforcement officials. Students bringing firearms to school or possessing firearms at school may be expelled. Parents of students found in violation of this policy may be contacted, and the students may be reported to law enforcement officials.
Tobacco/Nicotine-Free School Environment
Iowa law prohibits smoking on school grounds, including school vehicles. Additionally, it is the intention of the Cedar Rapids Community School District Board of Education to provide a healthy learning and working environment for employees, students, and visitors. In keeping with this intention, as well as supporting the principles taught in the K-12 health curriculum, no student, staff member or school visitor is permitted to use or display any tobacco/nicotine products, including the use of look-a-likes where the original would include tobacco or nicotine at any time:
- in any building, facility, or vehicle owned, maintained, leased, rented or chartered by the District
- on any schools grounds or property owned, maintained, leased, rented or chartered by the District, including athletic fields, sidewalks and parking lots
- at any school-sponsored or school-related event on-campus or off-campus.
In addition, no student is permitted to possess a tobacco/nicotine product, including the use of look-a-likes where the original would include tobacco or nicotine product.
The policy may permit tobacco/nicotine products to be included in instructional or research activities in public school buildings if the activity is conducted or supervised by the faculty member overseeing the instruction or research and the activity does not include smoking, chewing, or otherwise ingesting the tobacco/nicotine product.
Definition of School Grounds and Property
School grounds and property means and includes land and school facilities owned, maintained, leased, rented or chartered by the District and used for the provision of academic, extracurricular programs and administration by the District. School grounds include playgrounds and recreational places. School grounds include that portion of the land, school facilities and other facilities owned by municipalities, private entities or other individuals during those times when the school District has exclusive use of a portion of such land, school facilities, or other facilities for the provision of extracurricular programs.
Definition of Tobacco/Nicotine Products and Tobacco/Nicotine Use
For the purposes of this policy, “tobacco/nicotine products” are defined to include cigarettes, cigars, blunts, bidis, pipes, chewing tobacco, snuff, and any other items containing or reasonably resembling tobacco/nicotine or tobacco/nicotine products. “Tobacco/Nicotine use” includes smoking, chewing, dipping, or any other use of tobacco/nicotine products. It also includes the use of look-a-likes where the original would include tobacco or nicotine.
Enforcement of Tobacco/Nicotine Free School Environment
The success of this policy will depend upon the thoughtfulness, consideration and cooperation of tobacco and non- tobacco users. All individuals on school premises share in the responsibility for adhering to and assisting in compliance with this regulation.
Persons failing to abide by the policy shall be required to extinguish and/or dispose of the tobacco/nicotine product and/or leave the school grounds and property immediately.
It shall be the responsibility of the administration to enforce this policy.
- Students who willfully violate the policy will be treated in accordance with Regulation 604.1 “Maintenance of Orderly Conduct,” Regulation 604.3 “Suspension – Regular Education Students” and Regulation 604.5 “Suspension – Special Education Students”.
- Employees who willfully violate the policy will be considered as demonstrating insubordination. Their conduct will be treated through due process procedures.
- Community members who rent school facilities will be required to sign a statement indicating their assumption of the responsibility to adhere to the tobacco/nicotine free school environment policy. It will be their responsibility to supervise their own activities to accomplish a tobacco/nicotine free environment. Violation of this policy by the members of a group may adversely affect that group’s future utilization of school grounds and property.
- Visitors attending school functions will be asked by staff members in authority to refrain from using or displaying tobacco/nicotine products:
- in any building, facility, or vehicle owned, maintained, leased, rented or chartered by the District
- on any schools grounds and property owned, maintained leased, rented or chartered by the District including athletic fields, sidewalks and parking lots
- at any school-sponsored or school-related event on-campus or off-campus.
- Visitors who refuse such a request will be asked to leave the grounds and property.
Firearms, other weapons, other dangerous objects, and look-a-likes are prohibited on District property and at school sponsored activities. The Board of Education believes firearms and other weapons on District property or at school sponsored activities cause material and substantial disruption to the school environment, and present a threat to the health and safety of students, employees and visitors.
Any object which could be used to injure or threaten another person and which has no school-related purpose may be considered a weapon. This includes specifically, but is not limited to, firearms of all types, knives of all types, fireworks, metal pipes, metal knuckles, and explosives. The term “firearm” includes, but is not limited to, any weapon which is designed to expel a projectile by the action of an explosive, the frame or receiver of any such weapon, a muffler or silencer for such a weapon, or any explosive, incendiary or poison gas. An object that serves as a facsimile of a weapon may be considered a weapon in the enforcement of this policy. An object that has a school-related purpose but is used to threaten or inflict injury may also be considered a weapon.
Weapons shall be confiscated from persons who bring them onto District property or to school sponsored activities. The parents/guardians of a student shall be notified if a student is found in possession of a weapon, or is responsible for bringing a weapon, onto District property or to school sponsored activities. Possession or confiscation of weapons or dangerous objects will be reported to law enforcement officials. The student will be subject to disciplinary action including suspension or expulsion.
A student bringing a firearm onto school district property or to a school sponsored activity, or knowingly possessing a firearm on school district property or at a school sponsored activity shall be expelled for not less than one year and the student will be referred to law enforcement authorities; . However, the Superintendent shall have the authority to recommend this expulsion requirement be modified on a case-by-case basis.
Weapons under the control of law enforcement officials shall be exempt from this policy. The principal may allow authorized persons to display weapons, or unloaded firearms, or other dangerous objects for educational purposes.
Student Restraint and Confinement/Detention
The Board of Education realizes that restraint and confinement/detention are, in some circumstances, appropriate as a means to maintaining a safe and orderly school environment. They also expect that such measures comply with the Iowa Administrative Code 281 – Chapter 103.
Use of Reasonable Force
Any staff member may, within the scope of his/her employment, use and apply such force as is reasonable and necessary for self-defense, to protect the safety of another person, to restrain a student from self-inflicted injury, to stop a fight between students, for the protection of property, to obtain possession of weapons or other dangerous objects upon the person or within the control of a student; and to use reasonable force in other circumstances as defined in 704.1 of the Code of Iowa.
Corporal punishment is defined as the intentional physical punishment of a student. No employee shall inflict corporal punishment upon a student.
Code of Iowa: 280.21
Iowa Administrative Code: Chapter 103, Section 281
Building-Level Procedural Due Process
In cases where violations of Board policy, regulations, and procedures require the disciplining of a student, the following elements of procedural due process shall be present:
- the building administrator/designee will inform the student that an allegation of student misconduct has been received. It will not be presumed that the allegation is true;
- the student will be provided with information either verbally or in writing, regarding the policy, regulation, and/or procedure specific to the alleged misconduct;
- the student shall be offered appropriate due process permitting the student to give their version of the events to the decision-making authority;
- if the allegation is determined to be founded, the student shall receive notice concerning disciplinary action.
Students who continue to violate rules of conduct or whose presence is detrimental to the best interests of the school and/or other students may be suspended by the appropriate building administrator.
Expulsion – Regular Education Students
Only the Board may take action to expel a student and to readmit the student. A student may be expelled whenever the student’s behavior materially or substantially interferes with the educational process, disrupting the ability of other students to profit from the education provided to them. A student also may be expelled for possession of a dangerous and/or look-alike weapon, possession and/or sale of narcotics or look-alike drugs, threats of violence, or extreme acts of violence. Also, repeated or continuous misconduct of the nature specified in Regulation 604.3 may be cause for expulsion. Consideration of expulsion will be based on the individual facts of each case.
The Superintendent/designee shall conduct a fact-finding conference. The student and parent(s)/legal guardian(s) shall have the right to be present. The school administrator or designee and the student will be given an opportunity to present evidence concerning the alleged violation. All proceedings of the fact-finding conference shall be recorded and filed in the Superintendent/designee office. The recommendation for expulsion shall come from the Superintendent/designee. If, as a result of the fact-finding conference, the Superintendent determines that expulsion is justified, the recommendation to expel shall be forwarded to the Board of Directors for action.
If in the judgment of the Superintendent the expulsion is merited, the Superintendent or designee shall notify by certified mail the student and/or parent(s)/legal guardian(s). Included in the notice shall be:
- the nature of the charges,
- the reasons for the proposed expulsion, names of the witnesses and an oral or written report on the facts to which each witness testifies (unless the witnesses are students whose names may be released at the discretion of the superintendent),
- opportunity to present a defense against the charges and provide either oral testimony or written affidavits of witnesses on the student’s behalf,
- right to be represented by counsel, and
- a statement of the time, date and place of hearing before the Board of Directors.
The hearing shall be held within ten (10) working days of the date of notice; however, a reasonable delay shall be granted if requested by the student and/or parent(s)/legal guardian(s).
The Board of Directors shall hold a hearing on the matter, which will be held in closed session, unless the student or his/her parent(s)/legal guardian(s) request an open session. The student, parent(s)/legal guardian(s), and their representatives may be present at the hearing. A vote taken on the expulsion recommendation shall be in an open meeting, and shall be by a roll call vote. The results and findings of the Board in writing are open to the student’s inspection.
Within 72 hours after the decision of the Board of Directors, the student and/or parent(s)/legal guardian(s) shall be notified by certified mail. If the decision is to expel, the notice shall include a statement informing the student and/or parent(s)/legal guardian(s) of the right to appeal to the courts.
Requests for reinstatement shall be submitted to the Superintendent/designee who shall consult with the school administration. Reinstatement from expulsion shall require a recommendation from the Superintendent and approval of the Board of Directors.
Legal Reference: Goss v. Lopez, 419 U.S. 565 (1975).
Wood v. Strickland, 420 U.S. 308 (1975).
Southeast Warren Comm. School District v. Dept. of Public Instruction, 285 N.W.2d 173 (Iowa 1979).
Iowa Code §§ 21.5; 282.3, .4, .5 (2011).
281 I.A.C. 12.3(8).
CO-CURRICULAR ACTIVITIES ELIGIBILITY
The Cedar Rapids Community School District offers a variety of voluntary activities designed to enhance the classroom education of students. Co-curricular activities provide the benefits of promoting additional interests and abilities in the students during their school years and for a lifetime. Participation in school activities is a privilege. Students desiring to participate in co-curricular activities must meet the participation requirements established by the District.
Students who participate in co-curricular activities serve as ambassadors of the school/district 365 days a year, 24 hours a day, both away from school and at school. Students who wish to have the privilege of participating in co-curricular activities must conduct themselves in accordance with board policy and must refrain at all times from activities that are illegal, immoral, or unhealthy.
Students who fail to abide by this policy and the administrative regulations supporting it may be subject to disciplinary measures. The principal/designee shall keep records of violations of the co-curricular activities eligibility requirements.
Co-curricular activities include, but are not limited to, the following:
Athletics, instrumental and vocal music performances, drama productions, speech contests, state contests and performances for cheerleading and drill team, mock trial, Academic Decathlon, or any other activity where the student represents the school /district outside the classroom in a competition or performance.
STUDENT ELIGIBILITY FOR CO-CURRICULAR ACTIVITIES
Good Conduct Rule
To retain eligibility for participation in the Cedar Rapids Community School District co-curricular activities, students must conduct themselves as good citizens both in and out of school at all times. Students who represent the school in an activity are expected to serve as good role models to other students and to the members of the community.
If an employee of the district learns that a student may have violated the good conduct rule, the student shall be confronted with the allegation, the basis for the allegation and given an opportunity to tell the student’s side. If a preponderance of the evidence indicates that the student has violated the good conduct rule, the student will be deemed ineligible to participate in co-curricular activities for a period of time, as described below. The following are violations of the Good Conduct Rule:
- possession, use, or purchase of tobacco products, regardless of the student’s age;
- possession, use, or purchase of alcoholic beverages, including beer and wine (“use” includes having the odor of alcohol on one’s breath, (this includes “near beer” labeled non-alcoholic beer);
- possession, use, or purchase of illegal drugs or the unauthorized possession, use, or purchase of otherwise lawful drugs;
- engaging in any act that would be grounds for arrest or citation in the criminal or juvenile court system, excluding minor traffic offenses, regardless of whether the student was cited, arrested, convicted, or adjudicated for the act(s);
- inappropriate or offensive conduct including but not limited to fighting, insubordination (talking back or refusing to cooperate with authorities), hazing or harassment of others.
If a student transfers in from another school district and the student had not yet completed a period of ineligibility for a violation of a Good Conduct Rule in the previous school or school/district, then the student will be confronted regarding that ineligibility and will be given the opportunity to tell the student’s side. Violations of Good Conduct Policies in other school districts may result in loss of eligibility in the Cedar Rapids Community School District as described below.
Any student, who, is found to have violated the Good Conduct Rule, at any time, is subject to a loss of eligibility as follows:
First Offense within the student’s High School Athletic Career: up to one-third of season ineligibility with referral for professional evaluation.
Non-athletic: up to four weeks or longer if necessary to include being ineligible for a minimum of one public performance with referral for professional evaluation.
Second Offense within the Student’s High School Athletic Career: up to one-half the season of ineligibility with professional evaluation and/or treatment prior to reinstatement.
Non-athletic: up to six weeks with professional evaluation and/or treatment prior to reinstatement or longer if necessary to include a minimum of two public performances.
Third or more offense within the Student’s High School Athletic Career – up to twelve (12) calendar months of ineligibility with professional evaluation and/or treatment prior to reinstatement.
Non-athletic: up to twelve (12) calendar months with professional evaluation and/or treatment prior to reinstatement.
The period of ineligibility attaches immediately upon a finding of a violation if the student is currently engaged in a co-curricular activity. If the student is not currently engaged in a co-curricular activity, or if the period of ineligibility is not completed during the current activity, the period of ineligibility begins or is carried over to the time the student seeks to go out for the next activity or contest. However, if the period of time between a violation and an activity is 365 days or more, the student shall not serve an ineligibility period for the violation. When a student begins a season with an ineligibility period from a previous violation the student is expected to complete that activity to the coach’s/administrator’s satisfaction
or the penalty will attach when the student next seeks to go out for another activity, subject to the 365-day limitation above. An ineligible student shall attend all practices or rehearsals but may neither “suit up” nor perform/participate.
The voluntary admission provision is in place to allow students to seek help with substance abuse. It is designed for students and parents as a tool for treatment without penalty of losing eligibility. This admission is not intended as a loophole to avoid consequences for students found to have violated the good conduct rule. This provision may only be used once during a student’s high school career. This admission may prevent the loss of eligibility.
The purpose of the provision is to create honesty and openness when dealing with code of conduct violators. It is designed to help violators, not punish them.
Violators, or their parents/guardians, must approach building administrators acknowledging the student offense. To remain eligible, the student must:
- Be referred by the school to a substance abuse agency for evaluation.
- Complete all appointments with the agency.
- Fully cooperate with all recommendations made by the agency.
The student shall provide a copy of the recommendations from the agency to the school and evidence of compliance with completion.
The voluntary admission provision does not apply to violations of the good conduct rule when:
- The violation occurs at school or a school sponsored event.
- Law enforcement officials are involved.
- Investigations into a specific incident of student violations have already begun.
A voluntary admission is considered a first offense of the Good Conduct Policy, even if there is no period of ineligibility.
Cost of Evaluation and Treatment:
In cases of either violation of the Good Conduct Rule or Voluntary Admission, the District will provide a professional evaluation through a provider of the District’s choice. If treatment is recommended as a result of that evaluation, the District will provide only for a basic level of outpatient services through that provider, and not pay for any in-patient treatment. By completing the evaluation and treatment provided by the District, the student will be in compliance with the evaluation and treatment requirements of this Policy.
Letters and Awards:
Students who are ineligible at the conclusion of an activity shall not receive a letter or award for that activity.
Any student who is found by the administration to have violated the Good Conduct Rule may appeal this determination to the associate superintendent by contacting the superintendent within 3 days of being advised of the violation. The penalty will be in effect pending the associate superintendent’s decision.
If the student is still dissatisfied, he or she may appeal to the Board of Education by filing a written appeal with the board secretary at least 24 hours prior to the next board meeting. The review by the board will be in closed session unless the student’s parent (or the student, if the student is 18) requests an open session. The grounds for appeal to the school board are limited to the following: the student did not violate the Good Conduct Rule; the student was given inadequate due process in the investigation and determination; or the penalty is in violation of the Handbook Rule or Board Policy. The penalty will remain in effect pending the outcome of the meeting with the board.
If the Board of Education reverses the decision of the administration, the student shall be immediately eligible and shall have any record of the ineligibility period and violation deleted from the student’s record.
General Requirements for Athletic Eligibility
To be eligible for an activity, students participating must:
- be enrolled or dual-enrolled in school;
- be under 20 years of age;
- be enrolled in high school for a maximum of eight semesters, 12 trimesters;
- (students retained academically are not granted extra eligibility)
- for students in athletics, have not been a member of a college squad nor trained with a college squad, nor participated in a college contest nor engaged in that sport professionally;
- have met all transfer requirements, if the student is a transfer student, or be eligible under state law and regulations if the student is an open enrollment student.
Academic Eligibility Requirements for Co-curricular Activities
To be academically eligible for an activity, students must:
- have earned passing grades in at least 20 credits the previous term/trimester;
- be earning passing grades in at least 20 credits in the current term/trimester at the grade reporting times;
- be making adequate progress toward graduation
- Students in co-curricular activities failing to meet 1, 2, or 3 above will not be allowed to participate in the next performance/competition during the current/ following trimester as determined by the school administration.
- Per Iowa Law 36.15 (2) “The Scholarship Rule,” all students participating in athletics shall pass ALL classes at the END of each term in the past 12 months to be eligible.
Special education students or students covered by a Section 504 plan shall not be denied eligibility on the basis of scholarship in the identified area of disability, if the student is making adequate progress, as determined by the goals and objectives on the student’s IEP or accommodation plan.
Code of Iowa: §§ 279.8
Iowa Administrative Code: 281-36
Bunger v. Iowa High School Athletic Assn., 197 N.W.2d 555, 564 (Iowa 1972)
Student Expressions and Appearance
Students will be allowed to express their viewpoints and opinions as long as the expression is responsible. The expression will not, in the judgment of the administration, encourage the breaking of laws, defame others, be obscene or indecent, or cause a material and substantial disruption to the educational program. The administration, when making this judgment, will consider whether the activity in which the expression was made is school-sponsored and whether review or prohibition of the students’ speech furthers an educational purpose. Further, the expression must be done in a reasonable time, place, and manner that is not disruptive to the orderly and efficient operation of the District. Students will be permitted to distribute materials in designated areas before and after school and during the lunch period, as long as it does not create a disturbance, disrupt normal operations, or produce excess littering, and the material content does not violate reasonable standards of decency or advocate the violation of laws. Assembly of students will be allowed unless they are designed or may be reasonably expected to disrupt classes, interfere with school activities, or intrude upon the lives and rights of others. Materials concerning non-school events or activities shall be posted or distributed only with prior approval of the building principal/designee.
The District believes inappropriate student appearance causes material and substantial disruption to the school environment or presents a threat to the health and safety of students, employees and visitors. Students are expected to adhere to standards of cleanliness and dress that are compatible with the requirements of a good learning environment. The standards will be those generally acceptable to the community as appropriate in a school setting.
The District expects students to be clean and well-groomed and wear clothes in good repair and appropriate for the time, place, and occasion. Clothing or other apparel promoting products illegal for use by minors and clothing displaying obscene material, profanity, weapons, or reference to prohibited conduct are not allowed. While the primary responsibility for appearance lies with students and their parents/guardians, appearance disruptive to the education program will not be tolerated. When, in the judgment of a principal, a student’s appearance or choice of clothing disrupts the educational process or constitutes a threat to health or safety, the student may be required to make modifications or be subject to disciplinary action. The wearing of gang-related attire or insignia by students is prohibited.
Legal Reference: U.S. Const. amend. I.
Hazelwood School District v. Kuhlmeier, 484 U.S. 260 (1988).
Bethel School District v. Fraser, 478 U.S. 675 (1986).
New Jersey v. T.L.O., 469 U.S. 325 (1985).
Tinker v. Des Moines Ind. Comm. Sch. Dist., 393 U.S. 503 (1969).
Bystrom v. Fridley High School, 822 F.2d 747 (8th Cir. 1987).
Iowa Code §§ 279.8; 280.22; (2013).
Cross Reference: Regulation 604.1 “Maintenance of Orderly Conduct”
Regulation 604.2 “Bullying and Harassment of Students”
Official School Publications
An official school publication is a curricular or co-curricular student publication or broadcast, including but not limited to newspapers, yearbooks, literary magazines, television, radio, website or cable television programs produced in curricular or co-curricular journalism or journalism-related activities under the sponsorship of the school district and distributed to the student body either free or for a fee. Each school determines its own production and distribution schedule.
Freedom of Expression
Students have the right to exercise freedom of speech. Student publications are instruments through which students, staff, administrators, and the public can gain insight into student thinking and concerns.
School journalists may write about controversial issues in the school, community, and world. Student editors and writers, however, must observe the same legal responsibilities as those imposed upon conventional news media. Specifically, school journalists must refrain from publication of material that:
- Is obscene or vulgar
- Is libelous
- Causes material and substantial disruption of the orderly operation of the school
- Infringes on the rights of others
- Encourages students to commit unlawful acts
- Encourages students to violate school rules
A. Official school publications defined.
An “official school publication” is a curricular or co-curricular student publication or broadcast, including, but not limited, to newspapers, yearbooks, literary magazines, television, radio or cable television programs produced in curricular or co-curricular journalism or journalism-related activities under the sponsorship of the school district and distributed to the student body either free or for a fee.
B. Prior Restraint of Material Prepared for an Official School Publication
No student shall publish in an official school publication material which is obscene or vulgar, libelous, encourages students to commit unlawful acts or to violate school rules, causes material and substantial disruption of the orderly operation of the school, or infringes on the rights of others.
“obscene material” means that which the average person, applying community standards, finds as a whole to appeal to a minor’s prurient interest in sex, and depicts or describes in an offensive way sexual conduct or sexual acts, and which lacks serious literary, artistic, political or scientific value.
For purposes of an audience of students, forms of expression that are vulgar, indecent, lewd, or sexually explicit may be considered obscene.
“libelous” statements are false, unprivileged statements the average reader would interpret as statements of fact and which damage the reputation of an individual or business.
“encourage” means to spur on, stimulate, or foster. Note: mere factual reporting of controversial issues shall not be considered encouragement.
“material and substantial disruption of the orderly operation of the school” means student actions or behaviors that can reasonably be believed or feared to significantly interrupt school activities or intrude unreasonably in school affairs. The phrase also includes interference with the rights of others.
Student journalists shall be provided the opportunity to inform, entertain, investigate, interpret and evaluate in their work. Student journalists are entitled to the protection of the “fair comment rule,” which provides that all persons are free to express opinion on matters of common interest. Students are free to comment responsibly on school policies, the performance of school administrators, teachers, or employees, so long as the comments or criticisms are statements of opinion and are not libelous. However, student journalists are not entitled to a wholesale defamation exemption under the fair comment rule merely by including the disclaimer “In my opinion” or a similar phrase in conjunction with a false and damaging statement.
Students and other interested persons shall have an opportunity to express their attitudes and views as long as those expressions do not violate the above prohibitions.
C. Responsibilities of Student Journalists
Student journalists who participate in official school publications are responsible for the content of those publications.
It is the responsibility of student journalists to provide news and commentary that achieve professional standards of accuracy, fairness, objectivity and thoroughness in each and every aspect of the publication and that also achieve professional standards of grammar, usage, punctuation and spelling.
Student journalists must also accept responsibility for the journalistic publication to serve the need and interests of the school as well as the reading public.
D. Responsibilities of Faculty Advisers
Schools possess a substantial educational interest in teaching student writers journalistic skills. Journalism advisers shall supervise student writers to maintain professional standards of English and journalism and to comply with Iowa law, including the restrictions in Iowa Code section 280.22. The duties of the adviser shall include:
to teach and implement accepted responsible journalism;
to teach students the mechanical procedures in publishing a media project;
to supervise any fundraising activities, including advertising;
to advise and to counsel the students in the implementation of the criteria for the inclusion of stories and other material in the publication;
to maintain professional standards of English and journalism and to comply with Iowa law, including the restrictions in Iowa Code section 280.22;
to read the students’ work prior to publication to ensure that it adheres to Iowa law.
E. Appeal Procedure
Students who believe they have been unreasonably restricted in the exercise of their freedom of expression in official student publications have the right to appeal the decision by invoking the student grievance process outlined in Board Policy 601.a.
Any person aggrieved by the content of official student publications is directed to use the complaint procedure as outlined in Board Policies 501a or 601a, whichever is applicable.
Prior Restraint of Material Prepared for an Official School Publication
No student shall publish in an official school publication material which is obscene or vulgar, libelous, encourages students to commit unlawful acts or to violate school rules, causes material and substantial disruption of the orderly operation of the school, or infringes on the rights of others.
Safe and Responsible Student Use of Networked Technology Resources
The Cedar Rapids Community School District offers students structured access to the District’s computer network, including electronic resources such as file, print, and graphic tools as well as Internet access. This network enables students to explore thousands of libraries, databases, and bulletin boards and to exchange messages and instructional information with others throughout the world.
The internet can provide a vast collection of educational resources for students and employees. It is a global network which makes it impossible to control all available information. Because information appears, disappears and changes constantly, it is not possible to predict or control what students may locate. The District makes no guarantees as to the accuracy of information received on the internet. Although students may be under teacher supervision while on the network, it is not possible to constantly monitor individual students and what they are accessing on the network. Some students might encounter information which may not be of educational value. Student internet records and access records are confidential records treated like other student records. Internet use through District resources will be monitored by the District. The District will use technology protection measures to protect students from inappropriate access, including sites that include obscenity, child pornography or are harmful to minors.
A. Safety and security of students
Electronic communication will be provided to the degree appropriate for the age and maturity of the students involved.
Electronically controlled and/or monitored communications
Electronic research and communication through web-based sites will be supervised by staff and controlled through filtering of identified restricted sites. (For details, see items D and E.)
Managed Communications/District-Provided Email Accounts
District staff will have authority to control and monitor student access to various modes of managed communication, including District-provided email accounts, established in support of educational activities. Students may participate in educational networking sites in monitored environments. Educational networking sites are used by students, and by educators as teaching tools and for professional development. These sites are usually restricted to selected users and are not available to the general public. Students will be restricted from accessing non-educational social networking and media sharing websites.
B. Responsible use issues
Access to the electronic information network is provided as a resource through which students may conduct school-related tasks, research, and communication. All access should be in support of and consistent with the District’s strategic plan and educational objectives.
Users of District networked resources may not engage in activities that are illegal, utilize inappropriate language, engage in plagiarism or copyright infringement, or that jeopardize the security of the system.
Electronic access is a privilege that entails responsibility. In conjunction with Board policies and procedures for student rights, responsibilities, and conduct, the following standards of behavior will be expected from all networked computer services users:
- Students will access the system for educational purposes.
- Students will restrict their access to material deemed appropriate by staff and parents.
- Students will use appropriate language and will be respectful of others.
- Students will understand and respect license and copyright agreements.
- Students will keep passwords and personal information confidential.
C. Instruction on appropriate use
The District will instruct staff and students on the appropriate use of the Internet. Access to network services will be given only to students who act in a considerate and responsible manner. Violations may result in a loss of access as well as other disciplinary or legal action.
The District will monitor the online activities of students and will educate students about appropriate online behavior, including interacting on social networking sites and chat rooms. Students will also be educated on cyber-bullying, including awareness and response. Employees will provide age appropriate training for students who use the Internet. The training provided will be designed to promote the school district’s commitment to:
- The standards and acceptable use of Internet services as set forth in the Internet Safety Policy;
- Student safety with regard to:
- safety on the Internet;
- appropriate behavior while on online, on social networking Web sites, and
- in chat rooms; and
- cyber-bullying awareness and response.
- Compliance with the E-rate requirements of the Children’s Internet Protection Act
D. Unauthorized disclosure, use, and dissemination of personal information
District networked resources will be used in a manner that protects the confidentiality of information about students and is fully in accord with the student confidentiality protection requirements of federal law, state law, and District policy (Regulation 606.2 -Release of Student Records.)
- Parents/guardians will be given the opportunity to authorize electronic publication of a student’s work.
- Student names, telephone numbers, and addresses will not be revealed to the public over the network without parental permission.
E. Access to inappropriate material
Staff and parents should be aware that some material accessible via the network may contain items that are illegal, defamatory, inaccurate, or potentially offensive. Prohibited material may not be accessed by the students or staff. This includes child pornography, material that is obscene and material that is considered harmful to minors as defined by the Children’s Internet Protection Act.
Technology Protection Measure
A filter is used to protect against access to inappropriate material. The categories of sites and the degree to which sites are routinely blocked will be reviewed periodically.
Site blocking status may be changed based on a verified request by a staff member.
Although the District applies supervision and technology protection measures, students acting independently or irresponsibly may find ways to access inappropriate materials. Although such misuse is possible, this disadvantage is offset by the benefits to be gained from accessing legitimate information resources and by the opportunities for collaboration.
Age appropriate instruction will be provided regarding strategies for avoiding the inadvertent access of inappropriate material and what to do if students accidentally access such material.
Family and personal values
There is a wide range of material available on the Internet, some of which may not correspond with the particular values of individuals or families. Parents/guardians are encouraged to convey to their children the standards they should follow when using electronic media and information sources.
F. Monitoring of on-line activity
Communications on the network are public in nature. In an attempt to maintain system integrity and to help guard against irresponsible use, District personnel may review student files and other communications at any time. Due to the very nature of the medium, however, the District may not always be completely successful in managing, monitoring, or controlling the communications of individuals utilizing the network.
Supervision and monitoring
Student use of networked resources will be supervised and monitored by teachers in a manner that is appropriate for the age of the students and circumstances of use. Notice is provided to students regarding District monitoring, and students will be made aware that they have a very limited expectation of privacy when they use network resources at school. Routine monitoring that reveals evidence of inappropriate activities may result in an individualized search of a student’s activities or personal files.
Misuse of the networked technology resources by students will be addressed in accord with District policies regarding Student Rights and Responsibilities (603) and Student Conduct (604). Violations may result in loss of access as well as other disciplinary or legal action.
Damaged or Lost Property/Materials
Students who have attained the age of majority or the parent/legal guardian of minor students may be assessed the cost for damage to school property resulting from wanton, willful, or malicious acts. Also, they may be required to reimburse the District for the replacement costs of lost equipment or materials furnished by the school.
The Cedar Rapids Community School District charges fees for certain items, such as consumable materials, summer school, and musical instrument rental. Students whose families meet the income guidelines for free and reduced price meals, directly certified students eligible for Food Assistance and the Family Investment Program (FIP), Supplemental Security Income (SSI), transportation assistance under open enrollment, or who are in foster care are eligible to have their student fees waived or partially waived. Students enrolled in a CEP (Community Eligibility Program) school that are not on a Free and Reduced application or directly certified, must complete a Household Survey for consideration. Parents/guardians or students who may qualify should contact their school office. This waiver does not carry over from year to year; it must be applied for annually.
To be considered for reduced or waived school fees you must complete the Waiver Benefit section on the Application for Free and Reduced Price School Meals.
Student Fee Waiver
Students whose families meet the income guidelines for free and reduced price meals, the Family Investment Program (FIP), Supplemental Security Income (SSI), transportation assistance under open enrollment, or who are in foster care are eligible to have their student fees waived or partially waived. Parents/guardians or students who may qualify should contact their school office. This waiver does not carry over from year to year. It must be applied for annually.
Gifts to School Personnel
No Board member, employee, or immediate family member of a Board member or employee, shall accept a gift of more than three dollars ($3.00) in value in any one calendar day, and falling within the statutory definition of gift as it relates to public employees and officials. This regulation applies only to “restricted donors” as defined by the Code of Iowa §§ 68B.2
Every weather-related event is unique and requires the consideration of multiple factors in determining whether a delay of classes, early dismissal, or cancellation might be necessary. The final decision is made by the Superintendent/designee.
When hazardous weather threatens: The Superintendent/designee will consider input from the Transportation Manager, Custodial and Grounds Manager, area superintendents, and information from local meteorologists and online weather resources.
When a late start is deemed necessary: A decision is usually determined by 5:30 a.m. Late start times may vary depending on the weather conditions. There will be no morning early learning preschool or morning alternative kindergarten classes. In the event of a late start on a regularly-scheduled early dismissal day, the early dismissal will be cancelled and school will follow the regular dismissal times.
When a cancellation of classes is deemed necessary: A decision is usually determined by 5:30 a.m. All District schools, preschool/early learning program sites, and before- and after-school programs will be closed. Decisions regarding high school activity and athletic events will be made by the building administrator. As a general rule, elementary and middle school activities are cancelled. All weather-related cancellations must be made up. Make-up dates are part of the District calendar.
When an early-dismissal is deemed necessary: A decision is generally made by 10 a.m. Early-dismissal times may vary depending on the weather conditions. There will be no afternoon early learning preschool or afternoon alternative kindergarten classes. Children normally transported on buses will be returned by bus according to the early dismissal schedule unless other arrangements have been previously made and communicated to the child’s school. Decisions regarding high school activity and athletic events will be made by the building administrator/designee. As a general rule, elementary and middle school activities are cancelled.
Announcements of District weather-related decisions are communicated by the Community Relations Office through local media outlets and multiple District communication platforms.
Announcements of school activity and athletic event decisions are communicated by the building administrator/designee.
The District must make one decision that is appropriate for more than 16,000 students. We recognize that this decision may not always fit with individual circumstances. Therefore, we support parents/guardians in making the decision that is best for their family.
Reserved Time for Non-School Student Activities
Wednesday evenings and Sundays will be reserved for non-school sponsored student activities. On Wednesday, no public school-sponsored activity will detain elementary students after 4:30 p.m., middle school students after 5:45 p.m., and high school students after 7:00 p.m. Exceptions will be made only for compelling reasons, and will be approved by the building principal and the Superintendent/designee at least forty-eight (48) hours in advance.
At least annually, building principals will notify students and parents regarding the provisions of this regulation, and confirm that students may be excused without penalty from the Wednesday activities scheduled in accord with this regulation.
Use of Video Cameras on District Premises and District Transportation
The District will annually provide the following notice to employees
The Cedar Rapids Community School District Board of Directors has authorized the use of video cameras on District premises and video cameras and audio recording equipment on District transportation. The video cameras and audio recording equipment will be used to monitor and record employee behavior to maintain order on District premises and District transportation and to promote and maintain a safe environment. Employees are hereby notified that the content of the video and audio recordings may be used in an employee disciplinary investigation and/or proceeding. The content of the video and audio recordings may be confidential employee records and may be retained with other employment records. Video and audio recordings may be retained if necessary for use in an employee disciplinary investigation and/or proceeding or other matter as deemed necessary by the administration. Employees may request to view video and audio recordings involving them if the video and audio recordings are used in an employee disciplinary investigation and/or proceeding involving them.
The District will annually provide the following notice to students and parents:
The Cedar Rapids Community School District Board of Directors has authorized the use of video cameras on District premises and video cameras and audio recording equipment on District transportation. The video cameras and audio recording equipment will be used to monitor and record student behavior to maintain order on District premises and District transportation and to promote and maintain a safe environment. Students and parents are hereby notified that the content of the video and audio recordings may be used in a student disciplinary investigation and/or proceeding. The content of the video and audio recordings may be confidential student records and may be retained with other student records. Video and audio recordings may be retained if necessary for use in a student disciplinary investigation and/or proceeding or other matter as deemed necessary by the administration. Parents may request to review video and audio recordings of their child if the video and audio recordings are used in a disciplinary proceeding involving their child.
Post-Secondary Enrollment Options
Senior Year Plus legislation permits eligible high school students to take and receive college credit for courses at any public, private, or community college during the school year. Students in grades 11-12 who have exhausted the courses available in the District Program of Studies and meet eligibility requirements as set forth by Senior Year Plus legislation are eligible for Post-Secondary Enrollment Options. Courses that are successfully completed may apply toward graduation requirements and the District will pay up to $250 of the cost of a course. If a student fails or drops a course, the student will be responsible for paying all expenses incurred. Students interested in participating in this program should contact their school counselor. The school district does not pay for the cost of summer school courses.
Annual Notice Regarding Student Records
The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) affords parents and students over 18 years (“eligible students”) certain rights with respect to the student’ education records. They are:
(1) The right to inspect and review the student’s education records within 45 days of receipt of the request
Parents or eligible students should submit to the school principal [or appropriate school official] a written request that identifies the record(s) they wish to inspect. The principal will make arrangements for access and notify the parent or eligible student of the time and place where the records may be inspected.
(2) The right to request the amendment of the student’s education records that the parent or eligible student believe are inaccurate or misleading.
Parents or eligible students may ask the District to amend a record that they believe is inaccurate or misleading. They should write the school principal, clearly identify the part of the record they want changed, and specify why it is inaccurate or misleading. If the District decides not to amend the record as requested by the parent or eligible student, the District will notify the parent or eligible student of the decision and advise them of their right to a hearing regarding the request for amendment. Additional information regarding the hearing procedures will be provided to the parent or eligible student when notified of the right to a hearing.
(3) The right to consent to disclosures of personally identifiable information contained in the student’s education records, except to the extent that FERPA authorizes disclosure without consent.
One exception, which permits disclosure without consent, is disclosure to school officials with legitimate educational interests. A school official is a person employed by the District as an administrator, supervisor, instructor, or support staff member (including health or medical staff, law enforcement unit personnel and certain volunteers); a person serving on the School Board; a person or company with whom the School has contracted to perform a special task (such as an attorney, auditor, AEA employees, medical consultant, or therapist); or a parent or student serving on an official committee, such as a disciplinary or grievance committee, or student assistance team, or assisting another school official in performing his or her tasks. A school official has a legitimate educational interest if the official needs to review an education record in order to fulfill his or her professional responsibility. Upon request, the District discloses education records without consent to officials of another school district in which a student seeks or intends to enroll.
(4) The right to inform the District that the parent or eligible student does not want the District’s designated directory information, as defined below, to be released to the public.
To object to the designation and release of certain student records as directory information, the parent or eligible student must notify the principal in writing, prior to September 1 of each school year (or two weeks from the date of enrollment in the District if such enrollment occurs after September 1), of the information not to be released. This object on the release of directory information must be renewed annually. THIS FORM MAY BE PICKED UP IN THE SCHOOL’S MAIN OFFICE.
Directory information means information contained in an education record of a student that would not generally be considered harmful or an invasion of privacy if disclosed. The Cedar Rapids Community School District has designated the following student information as directory information: Student name, the most recent previous school or institution attended by the student, grade level, parent name, address, telephone number, district-issued email address, participation in officially recognized activities and sports, weight and height of members of athletic teams, degrees and awards received, and distinguished academic performance or public service.
In addition, two federal laws require local school districts receiving assistance under the Elementary and Secondary Act of 1965 (ESEA) to provide military recruiters, upon request, with three directory information categories – names, addresses and telephone listings – unless parents or eligible students have advised the school district that they do not want their student’s information disclosed to military recruiters without their prior written consent annually.
(5) The right to file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education concerning alleged failures by the District to comply with the requirements of FERPA.
The name and address of the Office that administers FERPA is Family Policy Compliance Office, U.S. Department of Education, 400 Maryland Ave. SW, Washington, DC 20202-8520 or visit their web site at: http://www.ed.gov/offices/OII/fpco/ for more information.
(6) The District may share information contained in a student’s record with officials of the juvenile justice system if such information will assist in their ability to serve the student.
(7) The District has contracted with Kirkwood Community College, Cedar Rapids, Iowa, to provide driver education instruction for high school students. Information relating to eligibility for full or partial waivers of school fees will be released to Kirkwood for students taking driver education during the school year. If a parent wishes to opt out of this disclosure, the parent will be expected to pay 100 percent of the cost of the driver education course.
Release of Student Directory-Type Information
Information designated by District Regulation 606.2 as student directory-type information is considered to be public record, open to public inspection as outlined in Chapter 22, Code of Iowa.
Notice shall be published yearly stipulating that such student directory-type information will be released upon request. (See Regulation 606.2)
U.S. Code 20, Section 1232g
P.L. 93-380 as amended
Code of Iowa: Chapter 22
Notification of Rights under the Protection of Pupil Rights Amendment (PPRA)
PPRA affords parents certain rights regarding our conduct of surveys, collection and use of information for marketing purposes, and certain physical exams. These include the right to:
• Consent before students are required to submit to a survey that concerns one or more of the following protected areas (“protected information survey”) if the survey is funded in whole or in part by a program of the U.S. Department of Education (ED)–
- Political affiliations or beliefs of the student or student’s parent;
- Mental or psychological problems of the student or student’s family;
- Sex behavior or attitudes;
- Illegal, anti-social, self-incriminating, or demeaning behavior;
- Critical appraisals of others with whom respondents have close family relationships;
- Legally recognized privileged relationships, such as with lawyers, doctors, or ministers;
- Religious practices, affiliations, or beliefs of the student or parents; or
- Income, other than as required by law to determine program eligibility.
- Receive notice and an opportunity to opt a student out of –
Any other protected information survey, regardless of funding;
- Any non-emergency, invasive physical exam or screening required as a condition of attendance, administered by the school or its agent, and not necessary to protect the immediate health and safety of a student, except for hearing, vision, or scoliosis screenings, or any physical exam or screening permitted or required under State law;
- Activities involving collection, disclosure, or use of personal information obtained from students for marketing or to sell or otherwise distribute the information to others.
• Inspect, upon request and before administration or use –
- Protected information surveys of students;
- Instruments used to collect personal information from students for any of the above marketing, sales, or other distribution purposes; and
- Instructional material used as part of the education curriculum.
These rights transfer to from the parents to a student who is 18 years old or an emancipated minor under State law.
The Cedar Rapids Community School District will develop and adopt policies, in consultation with parents, regarding these rights, as well as arrangements to protect student privacy in the administration of protected information surveys and the collection, disclosure, or use of personal information for marketing, sales, or other distribution purposes. The District will directly notify parents of these policies at least annually at the start of each school year and after any substantive changes. The District will also directly notify, such as through U.S. Mail or email, parents of students who are scheduled to participate in the specific activities or surveys and will provide an opportunity for the parent to opt his or her child out of participation of the specific activity or survey. Parents will be provided reasonable notification of the planned activities and surveys and be provided an opportunity to opt their child out of such activities and surveys. Parents will also be provided an opportunity to review any pertinent surveys. Following is a list of the specific activities and surveys covered under this requirement:
- Collection, disclosure, or use of personal information for marketing, sales or other distribution.
- Administration of any protected information survey not funded in whole or in part by ED.
- Any non-emergency, invasive physical examination or screening as described above.
Parents who believe their rights have been violated may file a complaint with the Family Policy Compliance Office, U.S. Department of Education, and 400 Maryland Avenue, SW, Washington, D.C. 20202-8520
No Child Left Behind Legislation
The “No Child Left Behind Act” (NCLB), 2001 grants parents the right to know the professional qualifications of their student’s classroom teachers. It is the right of a parent to ask for the following information about each of the child’s classroom teachers:
- Teacher state qualifications and licensing criteria for subject areas and grade level
- College major, degrees, and certifications held by teacher and are of discipline.
- Information about teachers who are teaching with conditional licenses.
If you would like to receive information regarding your child’s teacher, please contact your child’s school administrator. In addition, parents have the right to:
- Information on student’s performance level on state assessments
- Timely notice of four or more weeks regarding teaching by teacher not fully qualified
- Qualifications of paraprofessionals who provides services to students
Student Support Services
Additional support services are available to assist teachers when concerns arise with students. These services include building staff (special education teacher, counselor, nurse, health secretary, etc.) and Grant Wood Area Education Agency staff (psychologist, social worker, consultant, speech-language pathologist, occupational and physical therapist, work experience coordinators, and others.) Teachers and families may use input on an informal basis or request formal assistance in identifying strategies to address a concern, in carrying out these strategies, or in monitoring individual student progress. These services are available for all students by teacher or parent request through the counselor at the student’s school.
Parents/guardians making use of the open enrollment option to request enrollment of their children in another public school district in the State of Iowa should be aware of the following deadlines:
March 1, 2021, is the last date for open enrollment requests for first through twelfth grade for the 2021-2022 school year.
September 1, 2021 is the last date for open enrollment requests for kindergarten for 2021-2022 school year.
All requests filed after these dates must meet the “good cause” definition as stated on the application.
Transportation shall NOT be provided to students who enter the District under the Open Enrollment Law of 1989 as amended, unless such transportation is required by law. The District has the right to assign an open enrolled student to a particular school. Parents should be aware that open enrollment may result in the loss of high school athletic eligibility. Forms may be obtained by calling 558-2414.
Complete information is available on line from the Iowa Department of Education; http://www. educateiowa.gov/pk-12/options-educational-choice/open-enrollment
Open Enrollment Applications
It is the intent of Iowa Code section 282.12 to maximize parental choice in providing a wide range of educational opportunities that are not available for students in the district of residence. Open enrollment is the procedure allowing a parent/guardian to enroll a child in a public school district other than the district of residence at no tuition cost. The “resident district” is the district of residence for school purposes of the parent/guardian and the district in which an open enrollment pupil will be counted for the purpose of generating state aid regardless of the District in which the pupil is enrolled. The “receiving district” is the non-resident public school district in which a parent/guardian desires to have the pupil enrolled. A parent/guardian residing in a school district may apply to enroll the parent’s or guardian’s child in a public school in another school district in accordance with the prescribed deadlines and procedures. The deadline for Open Enrollment applications is March 1st of the year preceding the school year for which the open enrollment is sought.
Free transportation will not be provided to students who enter the District under the Open Enrollment Law of 1989 as amended, unless such transportation is required by law. The District maintains the right to assign an open enrolled student to a particular school. Athletic restrictions may apply in some instances.
Requests to open enroll a child requiring special education will only be granted if the receiving district maintains a special education instructional program which is appropriate to meet the child’s educational needs, and enrollment of the child in the receiving district’s program would not exceed the maximum class size in rule adopted by the State Board of Education for that program.
A parent/guardian may appeal the decision of the Board of Education of a school district (resident or receiving) on any matter related to open enrollment. This appeal is to the Iowa Department of Education and shall comply with the provisions of Iowa Code section 290.1. The appeal will be filed within 30 days of the decision of the Board of Education. It will be in the form of an affidavit signed by the parent/guardian, and it will state in a plain and concise manner what the parent/guardian feels to be the basis for appeal.
Code of Iowa: 282.18
Iowa Administrative Code: Chapter 17
Open Enrollment Into the District
The parent/guardian of the student requesting to open enroll into the Cedar Rapids Community School District will submit an open enrollment request to the District by March 1st of the preceding year. The Cedar Rapids Community School District Board/designee will act upon the request by June 1st of the preceding year or within 30 days if received after the March 1st deadline. Notification of either approval or denial of the request will be provided to the parent/guardian and the resident district within five business days of the disposition of the application.
A request to open enroll into the District will be approved if:
- The student is in good standing with their current district and is not currently suspended or expelled.
- Classroom space is sufficient
- The appropriate instructional program is available
- The applicant qualifies for “good cause” as defined in Iowa Code.
Open Enrollment Out of the District
Parents/guardians requesting open enrollment out of the Cedar Rapids Community School District for their student will notify the resident district (Cedar Rapids Community School District) and receiving school districts no later than March 1st of the preceding school year. The notice is made on forms developed by the Iowa Department of Education and available at each school site. The open enrollment request will be forwarded by the parent/guardian to the receiving school district’s Board or their designee, who will act on the request no later than June 1st of the school year preceding the school year for which the request is made.
For children entering Kindergarten, the deadline for submitting an application for open enrollment is September 1st of the current school year.
After the March 1st deadline, a student must meet “good cause” as defined by the Iowa Department of Education to be eligible for a timeline waiver. The following circumstances are considered “good cause” if the change occurred/began AFTER March 1st.
- Change in district of residence due to: family move, change in marital status, foster care, adoption, or treatment program.
- Participation in a foreign exchange program
- Failure of negotiations for reorganization or whole grade sharing
- Serious health need or pervasive harassment
- Loss of accreditation or revocation of a private school or public charter school contract after March 1st
Applications filed under “good cause” will be acted upon within thirty days of receiving the request. Board action is required on all denied open enrollment applications.
Reference: Iowa Code § 282.18(3)
Iowa Administrative Code 17.6(2)
Iowa Department of Education Open Enrollment Handbook
In-District Attendance Permits – Regular Education
Parents/guardians may request an In-District Attendance Permit for their student to attend a school outside of their resident attendance area for students that meet one of the following criteria.
- Student requires a transfer for documented safety reasons.
- Student has moved to a different school outside of their attendance zone and would like to continue at their current school.
- Student has a sibling currently attending the requested school.
Application forms are available on the District’s website. Each attendance permit application will be evaluated and either
approved or denied by the appropriate administrator or in the Office of Teaching and Learning who may consult with the
receiving and resident school administrators.
The following guidelines are in effect beginning with the 2019-2020 school year regarding promotion/transitional years
(elementary to middle and middle to high):
In-district attendance permits granted during Elementary School:
- When a student transitions from elementary to middle school they will attend the designated middle school. If the designated middle school to which the student is permitted feeds to a single high school, the student will attend that high school without the need to permit.
In-district attendance permits granted during Middle School:
- If the middle school to which the student is permitted feeds to a single high school, the student will attend that high school without need to renew the permit.
- If the middle school to which the student is permitted feeds to multiple high schools, the student will attend their high school of residence or reapply for a permit.
**These guidelines during promotion/transitional years also apply to students who have participated in the lottery process at our magnet schools.
The following are additional considerations:
- In-district permits must be filled out for each student requesting a transfer.
- Students do not have a guarantee to keep the in-district permit beyond one year (unless noted above).
- Families are required to provide their own transportation for the student(s) when voluntarily transferring.
- If a request for an in-district attendance permit is denied, an appeal may be made in writing to the Deputy Superintendent whose decision on the matter shall be final.
All In-District Permits Are Subject to Cancellation Upon:
- Changes to in-district permit policies.
- Changes to boundaries/attendance areas.
- Change in student transportation needs.
- Failure of the student to maintain adequate attendance and/or behavior patterns.
- Verification that voluntary school transfer request information provided was inaccurate or incomplete.
- In-district permits are subject to administrative revocation for reasonable cause by mutual agreement of the principals involved and the appropriate level administrator.
In-District Attendance Permits – Special Education
Parents/Guardians may request an In-District Attendance Permit for their students in special education to attend a school outside of their resident attendance area. Application forms are available at each school site and on the District’s website. Completed forms must be submitted to the school in their attendance area for initial review. Once permit applications have been reviewed at the school level they will be submitted to the Office of Learning and Leadership.
Each attendance permit application will be evaluated and either approved or denied by the appropriate administrator in the Office of Learning and Leadership in consultation with the Executive Director of Special Services as well as the receiving and resident school administrators.
Special Education permit approval will first be based on the same criteria and conditions as regular education permits. Additional conditions for special education permit approval include space in the appropriate special education program and the availability of the appropriate program and services in the requested building. The Executive Director of Special Services or designee will determine the availability of space and an appropriate program and services. The Individualized Education Plan (IEP) Team may be called upon to review appropriateness of the program placement when such placement is being considered or after a permit placement has occurred for a student.
Parents with approved attendance permits will be responsible for the transportation of students not attending their resident area school, or the special education assigned school.
Competent Private Instruction
Independent Private Instruction
Home School Assistance Program
The parent, legal guardian, or legal custodian of any child who has reached the age of 6 and has not yet turned 16 by September 15 of the current school year, and is not enrolled in either a public school or an accredited nonpublic school, must file the Competent Private Instruction (CPI) form annually. The form is due to the resident district by the first day of classes of the public school or 14 calendar days after removal from an accredited school or moving into the District. Evidence that the child has had the immunizations required by law must be provided at the time the child is first placed under competent private instruction. All required information must be provided or the application will be invalid and students will be counted absent/truant if they are not currently attending a public or an accredited nonpublic school.
The Home School Assistance Program offers home-schooling parents/guardians teacher-assisted services and resources. For information, contact the Home School Assistance Office at 558-2088.
The deadline for dual enrollment and/or Home School Assistance Program (if space is available) is September 15 or within 14 calendar days after moving to the district, or within 14 calendar days after removing the child from school. Home school or home school assistance program students enrolled in classes or participating in school activities in the school district are subject to the same policies, rules and regulations as other students and are disciplined in the same manner as other students.
The District shall refer a child who may be in need of special education to the area education agency division of special education. (CRCSD 602.2a) CPI forms may be obtained by calling 558-2414.
Independent Private Instruction is also an option.
Complete information is available on line from the Iowa Department of Education;
Asbestos has been an issue of concern for many years. The Asbestos Hazard Emergency Response Act of 1986 (AHERA) was designed to determine the extent of asbestos concerns in the schools and to act as a guide in formulating asbestos management policies for the schools.
The CRCSD has been surveyed for asbestos every three years since 1986. As is the case for most public schools and commercial buildings in Iowa, asbestos-containing products were found in our buildings: except for Viola Gibson Elementary School and the Educational Leadership and Support Center, which are newer buildings.
Wherever the potential exists for damaged materials to cause asbestos fibers to be released in to the air, we have encapsulated or enclosed the material. Most of these materials are in areas that are inaccessible to students, such as mechanical rooms or pipe tunnels.
An Asbestos Management Program has been developed to ensure that asbestos-containing materials are maintained in a condition in which they do not pose a health hazard. As part of this program, these material are periodically inspected.
As part of our annual maintenance and repair projects some asbestos-containing materials will be removed by a licensed contractor and under AHERA guidelines. The list of schools that currently have projects scheduled are:
- List planned or in progress projects
Anyone wishing to know more about the Asbestos Management Program or the asbestos-containing materials found in the Cedar Rapid Schools may request to read the Asbestos Management Plan which is on file in the school office.
Our school district facilities have been inspected by a certified asbestos inspector as required by AHERA. The inspector located, sampled and determined the condition and hazard potential of all material in the school facilities suspected of containing asbestos. The inspection and laboratory analysis records form the basis of the asbestos management plan.
A certified management planner has developed an asbestos management plan for the school district facilities which includes: notification letters, training for employees, a set of procedures designed to minimize the disturbance of asbestos-containing materials, and plans for regular surveillance of the materials. A copy of the management plan is available for inspection in the main office of each school.
STUDENT HEALTH AND WELL-BEING
Student Illness or Injury during the School Day
Students are sent to the health office if they are injured or appear ill. Health office staff will attend to the student’s complaint. This may include providing first aid, asking the student questions about how he/she feels, taking a temperature, making observations, talking to the teacher, and contacting the school nurse. Students will be sent home for:
- A temperature of 100.4º F. or higher
- Active, illness related vomiting or diarrhea,
The parent/guardian will be called and the student will be sent home. Other symptoms that influence the decision to send the student home include general appearance and functioning in the classroom. After a period of observation a decision will be made to do one of the following:
- Notify the parent/guardian for symptoms of illness or injury of a serious nature as determined by the school nurse and/or health secretary. Not all student visits to the health office will result in parents/guardians being contacted.
- Allow the student to rest in the health office for a brief period then return to class.
Students are to be fever-free without fever reducing medication before returning to school. During times of high rates of illness, such as during influenza season, the length of time a student must remain home after fever/symptoms of illness may change as recommended by Linn County Public Health.
(CRCSD Procedure 605.3c)
Students with communicable disease will be allowed to attend school as long as their attendance does not create a substantial risk of illness or transmission to the students or staff. The term “communicable disease” will mean an infectious or contagious disease spread from person to person, or animal to person, or as defined by law. Parents are advised to notify the school whenever their child has a communicable disease. All health information of students is strictly confidential. Exceptions are provided in Regulation 606.1 “Student Records”.
A student will be excluded from school when the student’s condition has been determined to create a health risk to others in the District environment or when the student is too ill to attend school. Such determination shall be made on a case-by-case basis by the student’s physician, the school nurse, appropriate school staff members, the State Department of Public Health and/or the Linn County Public Health.
Provision of Emergency Care
(CRCSD Procedure 605.3a)
Staff trained in first aid/emergency care techniques may provide emergency care or first aid to sick or injured students whenever they are under District supervision. For severe or life-threatening injuries and illnesses, the Emergency Assistance Number (911) will be called and the student will be transferred to an appropriate source of medical care as rapidly as possible.
During the published school-calendar year, each building will have designated, trained building medical responders.
Written guidelines for medical emergencies will be reviewed and updated annually and will be available in every building.
Medical responder teams will meet yearly to clarify procedures and update medical emergency practices.
Incidents requiring assessment by a healthcare provider will be documented according to Health Services reporting procedures. Medical responder teams will meet after emergency incidents for debriefing of the event.
Annually, parents are requested to provide emergency information, including the phone numbers of parents/guardians and alternative numbers to call in case of injury or illness at school.
The District will obtain epinephrine auto-injectors so if trained school personnel are available it can be administered to a student or individual who may be experiencing a suspected anaphylactic reaction.
CRCSD Board Regulation 410:
In accordance with Iowa Code 280.13C and Iowa Administrative Code 641-54, the Cedar Rapids Community School District implements and mandates both the Return To Learn and Return To Play policies for all students who participate in an extracurricular interscholastic activity in grades seven through twelve.
In addition, Return to Learn and Return to Play guidelines will be implemented when school staff become aware of any student, PK through 12, who has been diagnosed with a concussion by a healthcare provider or shows signs/symptoms of concussion. This includes concussions resulting from home/non-school sponsored activities/injuries/accidents. If signs or symptoms of concussion are present, Return to Learn and Return to Play procedures will be implemented. School nurses will contact parent/guardian, student and counselor as soon as possible for follow up. Teachers, parent/guardian and student, if age appropriate, will be provided concussion symptom checklists. In order to return to play, which includes athletics, other sanctioned and school sponsored events/activities, PE and recess, the student must be 100% symptom free at school and at home.
- See the district website for specific Concussion Return to Learn/Play guidelines
Administration of Medication Policy
Prescription Medication. Only medication prescribed by a legal prescriber shall be administered during the time the student is at school. The parent/guardian shall provide written authorization and instructions. The medication (in original container) must be kept in the school health office unless the school nurse authorizes otherwise. By law, students with asthma or other airway constricting diseases may self-administer their medication with approval of their parents and prescribing health care provider. Permission forms are available in each school health office or on the District’s website under the Student Services/Health Services page.
Over-the-Counter Medication. A legal prescriber’s signature is required on the District’s medication permission form before any over-the-counter medications will be given- including lotions and cough drops etc. Requests to administer experimental, off-label supplements, herbal, alternative, complementary and homeopathic medications, including all forms of essential oils, are evaluated and approved for administration on a case-by-case basis in consultation with the school nurse. There will also need to be communication with the prescriber, research, information, resources and other sources to support the safe and effective administration at school (Iowa Board of Nursing, 1995). Middle and high school students, in accordance with Health Services protocols for common complaints of pain, may have limited, over-the-counter medication with written parental consent.
**A Legal Prescriber is a physician, dentist, podiatrist, licensed physician assistant or advanced registered nurse practitioner.
(CRCSD Regulation 602.1)
All students new to the District shall present evidence they have received state mandated immunizations or meet the exception as outlined in the Code of Iowa before they may enroll in our schools. Students may be admitted conditionally to the attendance center if they have completed provisional requirements. Failure to meet state immunization requirements will be grounds for denial of admission or exclusion. Exemptions from the requirement will only be allowed for medical or religious reasons recognized by law. The student must provide a valid Iowa State Department of Public Health Certificate of Immunization Exemption to be exempt from this policy.
Health Screenings – Hearing, Dental, BMI, SEB, and Vision
If you do not want your child to participate in school health screenings, please notify the health office in writing at the beginning of the year.
Hearing Screening: Grant Wood Area Education Agency (GWAEA) screens all students in Alternative Kindergarten (AK), kindergarten, and grades 1, 2, and 5. Students in the Early Learning Program with IEP’s will be screened. Students in grades 3, 4, middle, and high school, who are new to the school, that don’t have a documented hearing test, and some students with a history of known hearing loss will also be tested. Follow up testing may occur periodically if previous hearing test results were not within normal limits. Parents/guardians not wishing their child’s hearing be tested should notify the health office in writing at the beginning of the year. Parents/guardians with concerns about their child’s hearing may contact their school nurse or Grant Wood Area Education Agency to schedule a hearing test at any time, (319)399-6700.
Dental Screening: UnityPoint Health/St. Luke’s Hospital – Dental Health Center and HACAP partner to offer preventive dental services to students in Pre-K through 5th grade in qualifying schools. Dental hygienists will provide dental screenings to children enrolled in qualifying schools. If a parent/guardian does not wish for their child(ren) to receive a dental screening, a written request must be sent to the child(ren)’s school health office saying such. Preventive services such as fluoride varnish and dental sealants are also available to those students with a Dental Program Consent Form signed by the parent/guardian and returned to the school health office.
Iowa law requires that any student entering kindergarten and ninth grade provide a valid Iowa Department of Public Health Certificate of Dental. (This form is available from your school nurse, dentist, or on the CRCSD Web site in the Student Services/Health Services section.) The goal of this legislation is for each student to receive the benefit of early and regular dental care including prevention, and to establish a dental home for children who may not have one.
BMI Screening: District health and/or PE staff members will screen height and weight of kindergarten and 5th grade students. If your child had a physical for this school year, we may use that height and weight data to calculate your child’s BMI.
Social, Emotional, Behavioral Screening: Social, Emotional, Behavioral (SEB) Screening: Students will be screened to assess social, emotional, and behavioral well-being. The purpose of the screening is to identify areas where students may need some additional support. Follow up screening and parent communication may occur if the results indicate the need for further attention. Parents/guardians with concerns about their child’s social, emotional or behavioral well-being should contact the counseling or health office.
Vision Screening: Iowa law requires that any student entering kindergarten and third grade have a vision screening. To be valid, the vision screening shall be performed no earlier than one year prior to the date of enrollment and no later than six months after the date of the child’s enrollment into both kindergarten and third grade. The vision screening may be conducted by a physician, optometrist, advanced nurse practitioner, physician assistant, local public health department, public or accredited nonpublic school, community based organization, free clinic, or child care center. An online screening may be conducted by a child’s parent or guardian. A Certificate of Vision Screening Form is available on the district website in the student services/health services section. If the school does not receive a completed screening form, parents/guardians of kindergarten students will receive a consent form for the option to have your child screened at school and results sent to the Iowa Department of Public Health. Third grade students will be screened at school and results sent to the Iowa Department of Public Health. Parents/guardians with concerns about their child’s vision should contact the school nurse/health office.
Metro Care Connection
Metro Care Connection is the Cedar Rapids Community School District’s expanded school-based health services. The program focuses on removing barriers to learning for youth and strives to meet diverse student needs, improve well-being, increase student attendance and achievement, and ensure connectedness. Services include health care such as physicals, immunizations and minor illness treatment. To learn more about these services or access the services please call 558-4765, talk to your school nurse or go to the District website.
Yearly physical exams are required for participation in Preschool and 7th through 12th grade athletics. Failure to provide proof of a physical examination will make the student ineligible for athletic participation. Students who cannot afford the cost of the physical examination should contact the coach of their sport or the school nurse. In addition, Metro Care Connection offers health care and service to students by Pediatric Nurse Practitioners at no cost to uninsured or underinsured families.
Parents/guardians can apply for low- or no-cost health insurance for their children through the state’s Healthy and Well Kids in Iowa (HAWK-I) program. Children under age 19, who meet certain criteria, are eligible. The coverage includes doctor visits, hearing services, dental care, prescriptions, immunizations, physical therapy, vision care, speech therapy, hospital services, mental health and substance abuse care. More information and applications are available online at www.dhs.iowa.gov/hawk-i. Parents/guardians may also call 1-800-257-8563 to have an application mailed or contact the Linn County Outreach Specialist at 319-739-1510 for additional assistance.
The Cedar Rapids Community School District head lice procedures follow recommendations from the Iowa Department of Public Health, Iowa Department of Education and Centers for Disease Control. The District’s role is to support parents by emphasizing prevention, early detection and education.
Students with signs and symptoms of head lice will be referred to the health office for assessment. Parents/guardians of students found to have live lice, will be notified and provided with information regarding treatment and management. Students are not excluded from school for live head lice or nits.
It is important that families check their child’s head for lice on a routine basis. Regular home screening is the most effective measure in preventing, identifying, and controlling head lice.
Special Diet Requests
If your child has been determined by a licensed health care provider to have a medical condition that restricts their diet and requires dietary accommodations, a Diet Prescription Form must be completed by a medical authority and returned to the health office. All meal modifications require a completed and signed Diet Prescription Form on file. The Diet Prescription Form is available on the district website and your school’s health office. A soy milk alternative to fluid cow’s milk is available to those with a medical condition when prescribed by a medical authority. There will be no additional cost to a modified meal due to a medical condition. Notice of procedural rights are available on the District website and the Office of Learning and Leadership. If you have any questions or need assistance, please contact the Food and Nutrition Department at 319-558-2305.
The Cedar Rapids Community School District supports a healthy environment in which students learn and participate in positive dietary and lifestyle practices. By facilitating learning through the support and promotion of good nutrition and physical activity, schools contribute to the basic health, academic achievement and quality of life of students.
Nutrition Education and Promotion
The District will provide nutrition education and engage in nutrition promotion.
The District will develop a wellness approach to physical activities that meet applicable federal and state guidelines.
Other School Based Activities that Promote Wellness
The District promotes activities and policies that support staff members’ efforts to maintain a healthy lifestyle.
The District supports parents’ efforts to provide a healthy diet and daily physical activity for their children.
Nutritional Standards for all Foods Available on Campus
The District will base menus on Dietary Guidelines for Americans, National School Lunch and Breakfast meal pattern requirements, and the Recommended Dietary Allowances.
The District recommends that foods and beverages offered on campus and for school activities meet applicable federal and state guidelines.
Plan for Wellness Policy Implementation and Effectiveness
The “Wellness Policy Committee” will:
- plan for, monitor, and evaluate the implementation of wellness initiatives as guided by the Board Policy and Procedures.
- inform and update the public about the content and implementation of the policy
Section 204 Public Law 108-265-June 30, 2004 (Child Nutrition and WIC Reauthorization Act)
2008 Iowa Acts, Senate File 2425, division XI, “Healthy Kids Act”. IAC 281—12.2 and 12.5 (256)
Section 204 of the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010, Public Law 111-296, Section 9A
Snacks – Nutritional Guidelines
It is the responsibility of each building to ensure all snacks meet District Nutritional Guidelines for foods and beverages, including vending, a la carte, school stores, celebrations and fundraisers. This applies to all foods offered, made available or sold during the school day, defined as the period from midnight before, to 30 minutes after the end of the school day.
Each building shall do the following:
- All foods offered in school must meet guidelines; either selected from healthy snack lists or determined to meet guidelines using SMART Snack calculator.
- Daily snacks in the classroom or those provided for brain-based learning activities are optional (allowed); implementation determined at the discretion of individual building teams.
- If food is brought from home to be shared, it must be prepackaged and prepared by vendor with the exception of fruits and vegetables.
- Foods provided that do not meet guidelines will not be served and will be returned to provider.
- Recognize that provision of a snack is meant to fuel the student’s body and provides opportunity for engaging in nutrition education and promotion.
Wellness Fundraising Guidelines
It is the responsibility of each building to discontinue using unhealthy foods for fundraisers. Each building must ensure all snacks meet District Nutritional Guidelines for foods and beverages, including vending, a la carte, school stores, celebrations and fundraisers. This applies to all foods offered, made available or sold during the school day, identified as the period from midnight before, to 30 minutes after the end of the school day.
Each building shall determine a school-wide plan and do the following:
- Include if/what healthy foods or non-food items/activities will be offered and how physical activity will be promoted.
- Consider that foods/beverages used as rewards for students participating in fundraising activities must meet District Nutritional Guidelines.
- The sale of competitive foods, including foods of minimal nutritional value, may not occur one-half hour prior to, during, or one-half hour after the meal shifts of food service programs unless permission has been granted by the Manager of Food and Nutrition Department. (Board Regulation 902.2)
Guidelines for Fragrance-Free Products
There are many people who experience unpleasant physical effects from scented products and a growing number of people who suffer more severe reactions to these types of products and chemicals. People with sensitivity to chemicals can experience a range of debilitating physical reactions, some even life-threatening, used in a variety of scented materials, including fragrances and chemical products.
Allergic and asthmatic patients, as well as those with other conditions, report that certain odors, even in the smallest amounts, can trigger an episode. Some people may report mild irritation while others are incapacitated and/or must give up many ‘normal’ activities in order to avoid exposure (such as going to public places).
All teachers, students, and staff members are asked to refrain from bringing cleaning products, deodorizers or other personal care products into the classroom unless they are identified as fragrance-free. In addition, cleaning products with strong scents should only be used during off-peak school hours.
Staff should also limit or refrain from wearing perfume, cologne and other fragrances, and use unscented personal care products in order to promote a fragrance-free environment. Fragrance products can include: hand sanitizers, cologne, perfume, scented lotions, hair products, candles, air fresheners, plug-ins, and similar products.
Notice: Chapter 103 Iowa Administrative code – Corporal Punishment, Restrain, and Physical Confinement and Detention
State law forbids school employees from using corporal punishment against any student. Certain actions by school employees are not considered corporal punishment. Additionally, school employees may use “reasonable and necessary force, not designed or intended to cause pain” to do certain things, such as prevent harm to persons or property.
State law also places limits school employees’ abilities to restrain or confine and detain any student. The law limits why, how, where, and for how long a school employee may restrain or confine and detain a child. If a child is restrained or confined and detained, the school must maintain documentation and must provide certain types of notice to the child’s parents.
If you have any questions about this state law, please contact your school. The complete text of the law and additional information is available on the Iowa Department of Education’s website: www.iowa.gov/educate.