South Pike County School District has made handbook changes that will go into effect this fall.
The main change in the Elementary Handbook pertains to the demerit system that has been in place. Beginning this fall if a student receives a demerit they will be given recess detention hall. Students will be allowed to participate in incentive trips unless the demerit is a category 2 offense or they have received over 8 demerits. Letters will be sent home for the fourth, seventh and ninth demerit a student receives.
If a student has 9 demerits they will not be allowed to participate in incentive trips or extracurricular activities; 10-11 demerits a letter will be sent and corporal punishment will be used; 12-14 will be in-school-suspension (ISS); 14-15 will be of out-of-school-suspension (OSS); 16-17 will be three days of OSS; 18-19 will be five days of OSS.
If a student receives 19 demerits a committee will meet to decide an alternate educational plan for the student.
The High School will no longer participate in ISS or corporal punishment. Instead the alternatives will be noon detention hall, after-school detention hall or Saturday school.
Principal Kathleen Cole explained that ISS was becoming too hard to keep up with and that teachers were saying the students were not turning in the work that had been assigned to them.
Saturday school will be assigned depending on disciplinary actions needed. It will begin at 8 a.m. and end at noon, but students may not drive themselves or leave on their own. A parent or guardian must bring the student and sign them in and pick them up and sign them out. If a student leaves early they earn an extra Saturday. If they miss two sessions of Saturday school in a row they will receive three days of OSS.
After-school detention will last 30-minutes after school. It will be the student’s responsibility to tell their parents that they will not be able to leave at dismissal. If a student cannot make contact with their parent the day after-school detention is assigned, it can be made up the next day. For each detention skipped another day will be added. After three skipped afternoon detentions the student will be assigned to Saturday school.
Students will also have to purchase a $2 parking permit to park their vehicle on campus. This new policy will require the permit to hang from the rearview mirror in the student’s car. Cole said this change is being implemented due to lack of room for parking on campus, students that were driving to school without a driver’s license and vehicles being left on campus that no one knew who they belonged to.
Dress code will pretty much remain the same. No leggings, jegging or yoga pants unless the shirt worn with them goes to 2 ½” above the knee, the same as dress and skirt lenths.
No sheer clothing with a spaghetti strap shirt underneath will be allowed. The shirt must have a 2” strap.
Hair color and style must not interfere with the learning environment and be appropriate for school.
Dress and hair code changes are being made to make the school a safe environment for students and to help prevent bullying.
Prom dress code will be reviewed in January. The school board will likely announce the prom dress code at their meeting in February.
Students will receive handbooks when school begins.