Miami Trace Local Schools Home of the Panthers 2018 2019 - Principal: Jason Binegar Assistant Principal: Debbie ...

 
Miami Trace Local Schools Home of the Panthers 2018 2019 - Principal: Jason Binegar Assistant Principal: Debbie ...
Miami Trace Local Schools
  Home of the Panthers
      2018 - 2019

      Principal: Jason Binegar
     jbinegar@mtpanthers.org

Assistant Principal: Debbie Southward
    dsouthward@mtpanthers.org
This agenda belongs to:

                Name: __________________________________________ Grade: ________

TABLE OF CONTENTS
MTMS Mission Statement and Philosophy                5
Drug Free Schools                                    6
Disclaimer                                           6
Bullying and Other Forms of Aggressive Behavior….6-9
MTMS Behavior Matrix                               10
Miami Trace Local Schools Directory                11
Miami Trace Middle School Staff Directory          11, 12
School Year District Calendar                      13
VISITORS                                           14
SCHOOL DAY                                         14
Normal Schedule                                    14
Unexpected Dismissal                               14
ATTENDANCE Policies                                14-20
Class participation                                21
Volunteers                                         21
PROGRAMS – SCHOOL                                  21
Guidance                                           21
Special Education                                  21
Library                                            22
Field Trips                                         22
ACTIVITIES – STUDENTS                              22
Student Council                                    22
Choir                                              22
Dances/Skating Parties/Other Events                23
Athletics                                          23
ATHLETE AND CHEERLEADER CODE                       23
Rules                                              23
Middle School Athletic Eligibility Policy          24
Consequences of Ineligibility                      24
School Sponsored / Non School Sponsored Activities..25
POLICIES – EVALUATION                              25
District Grading Policy                            26
Homework                                           25
Grades and Interim Progress Reports                26
Honor Roll and Honorable Mention                   26
POLICIES – GENERAL                                 26
Immunization                                       26
Medication to Students                             26-27
                                               2
Books, Workbooks, and Fees                      27
Telephone Use                                   27
Sales                                           27
Student Records                                 28
Child Custody                                   28
Child Abuse and Neglect                         28
Cooperation with Social Agencies and Law Enf……. 28
PROCEDURES                                      28
Emergency Medical Forms                          28
Withdrawal and Transfer                         29
Illness at School                               29
Injury at School                                29
Lost and Found                                  29
STUDENT SERVICES                                29
Child Nutrition Program                         29
National School Lunch Program                   30
Free and Reduced Lunch Program                  30-32
Health                                          32
Lockers                                         32
Transportation                                  33
SAFETY – Fire, Tornado, Lockdown, Safety Drills 33
SCHOOL CODE OF CONDUCT                       …. 33
Introduction                                    33
Arrival at School                               34
Hall                                            34
TEAM                                            34
Assembly                                        34
Cafeteria                                       34
Health and Wellness Policy                      35
Personal Appearance                             35
Tattoos and Body Art                            36
Cheating                                        36
Property Damage                                 36
Care of Personal Property                       36-37
Cell Phone/Electronic Device Policy             37
DISCIPLINARY ACTION                             37
Video Cameras in School                         37
Interrogations and Searches                     38
Demerits                                        38
Physical Restraints                             38
In-School Detention                             38
At-home Suspension with Parental Instruction    39
Out-of-School                                   39
Fayette County Alternative School               39
Expulsion                                       39
Board Appeal of Expulsion/Suspension            39
                                        3
Juvenile Court                     39
Appropriate Computer Use           40
DISCIPLINARY INFRACTIONS           40
Student Rights                     40
DISCIPLINE PLAN                    40
INFRACTION PENALTIES               41
Class I Offense                    41
Class I Penalty                    41
Class II Offense                   42
Class II Penalty                   41
Class III Offense                  42-43
Class III Penalty                  42
Class IV Offense                   43
Class IV Penalty                   43
Removal from School Grounds        41
SCHOOL BUS                         44
Video Cameras on the School Bus    44
BUS CODE                           45
Minor Infractions and Penalties    45
Major Infractions and Penalties    46
PERMISSION FORM FOR PRESCRIPTION MEDICATION 46
BELL SCHEDULES                        48-49

                             4
Principal’s Statement:

Welcome to Miami Trace Middle School. We are excited about this upcoming school year. The
faculty and staff will work to assist you in having a successful year. Your participation and effort in
the academics, arts, athletic, and social activities we offer should greatly increase your development
and preparation for high school. It will also make your year much more enjoyable and rewarding.
Please take advantage of all we have to offer you at Miami Trace Middle School. The quality of
education you receive here depends greatly on your commitment to excellence and preparedness to
learn.

Our main responsibility at Miami Trace Middle School is to prepare you for success at the high
school level. We look forward to working with you and your parents to make that happen.

Sincerely,

Jason Binegar
Principal

                               MIAMI TRACE MIDDLE SCHOOL

                                           PHILOSOPHY

Miami Trace Middle School will strive to lead the area's educational communities in student
achievement, extra-curricular participation, teacher development and service, and parental support.

Our primary purpose at Miami Trace Middle School is to assist our students in making a successful
transition between elementary and high school. Our intent is to send the most prepared learners to
the high school. To accomplish this goal, we provide our students with a solid academic foundation
which includes exciting new curricular offerings, as well as “hands on” practical skills.

Because early adolescence is a time of tremendous change, we cannot ignore the areas of physical,
emotional, and social development. We want our students to be knowledgeable of and comfortable
with the physical changes they are experiencing. We want them to know how to maintain healthy,
responsible family and interpersonal relationships and to explore their own values and personal
goals.

Finally, we want our students to be well-rounded young people. We feel strongly that school work
should be balanced with extra - curricular activities. Sports, clubs, and special groups help build a
variety of skills and make school more fun.

When our students leave Miami Trace Middle School, we hope to have given them the preparation
they need to confidently handle the opportunities and challenges that lie before them.

                            MIAMI TRACE MISSION STATEMENT

To provide a quality educational environment with opportunities and relationships that prepares
students for future success.

                                                   5
DISCLAIMER

School rules published in this handbook are subject to such changes as may be needed to insure
continued compliance with federal, state or local regulations, as well as the Board of Education
Policies and Procedures, are subject to such review and alteration as becomes necessary for the
routine operation of the school. Not all rules of behavior and board policies and procedures can be
written and inserted in a guidebook; however, we expect students to follow reasonable rules and not
violate the rights of others. The provisions of this handbook and the code of conduct are in effect at
school, on school property, at any school-sponsored activity, in the line of sight of the middle school
or otherwise subject to the authority of school officials. These rules apply off school property if the
misconduct is connected to activities or incidents that have occurred on property owned or
controlled by the district. These rules also apply off school property if the misconduct interferes
with the learning environment on school property or if the misconduct is directed at a district
official or employee or the property of a district official or employee.

DRUG-FREE SCHOOLS

In accordance with Federal law, the Board of Education prohibits the use, possession, concealment,
and/or distribution of drugs by students on school grounds, in school or school-approved vehicles,
or at any school-related event. Drugs include any alcoholic beverage, anabolic steroid, dangerous
controlled substance (prescription drugs, etc.) as defined by State statute, or substance that could be
considered a "look-a-like" controlled substance. Compliance with this Federal law is mandatory for
all students. Any student who violates this policy will be subject to disciplinary action, in
accordance with due process and as specified in the student handbooks, up to and including
expulsion from school. When required by State law, the District will also notify law enforcement
officials.

The District is concerned about any student who is a victim of alcohol or drug abuse and will
facilitate the process by which he or she receives help through programs and services available in
the community. Students and their parents should contact the school principal or counseling office
whenever such help is needed.

BULLYING AND OTHER FORMS OF AGGRESSIVE BEHAVIOR
The Board of Education is committed to providing a safe, positive, productive, and nurturing
educational environment for all of its students. The Board encourages the promotion of positive
interpersonal relations between members of the school community. Aggressive behavior toward a
student, whether by other students, staff, or third parties is strictly prohibited and will not be
tolerated. This prohibition includes physical, verbal, and psychological abuse. The Board will not
tolerate any gestures, comments, threats, or actions which cause or threaten to cause bodily harm or
personal degradation. This policy applies to all activities in the District, including activities on
school property and those occurring off school property if the student or employee is at any school-
sponsored, school-approved or school-related activity or function, such as field trips or athletic
events where students are under the school's control, or where an employee is engaged in school
business.
Aggressive behavior is defined as inappropriate conduct that is repeated enough, or serious enough,
to negatively impact a student's educational, physical, or emotional well being. This type of
behavior is a form of intimidation and harassment, although it need not be based on any of the
legally protected characteristics, such as sex, race, color, national origin, marital status, or disability.
                                                     6
It would include, but not be limited to, such behaviors as stalking, bullying/cyberbullying,
intimidating, menacing, coercion, name-calling, taunting, making threats, and hazing.
Any student that believes he/she has been or is the victim of aggressive behavior should
immediately report the situation to the building principal or assistant principal, or the
Superintendent. The student may also report concerns to a teacher or counselor who will be
responsible for notifying the appropriate administrator or Board official. Complaints against the
building principal should be filed with the Superintendent. Complaints against the Superintendent
should be filed with the Board President.
Every student is encouraged, and every staff member is required, to report any situation that they
believe to be aggressive behavior directed toward a student. Reports may be made to those
identified above.
All complaints about aggressive behavior that may violate this policy shall be promptly
investigated.
If the investigation finds an instance of aggressive behavior has occurred, it will result in prompt
and appropriate remedial and/or disciplinary action. This may include up to expulsion for students,
up to discharge for employees, exclusion for parents, guests, volunteers, and contractors, and
removal from any officer position and/or a request to resign for Board members. Individuals may
also be referred to law enforcement officials.
The complainant shall be notified of the findings of the investigation, and as appropriate, that
remedial action has been taken.
This policy shall not be interpreted to infringe upon the First Amendment rights of students (i.e., to
prohibit a reasoned and civil exchange of opinions, or debate, that is conducted at appropriate times
and places during the school day and is protected by State or Federal law).
Retaliation against any person, who reports, is thought to have reported, files a complaint, or
otherwise participates in an investigation or inquiry concerning allegations of aggressive behavior is
prohibited and will not be tolerated. Such retaliation shall be considered a serious violation of Board
policy and independent of whether a complaint is substantiated. Suspected retaliation should be
reported in the same manner as aggressive behavior. Making intentionally false reports about
aggressive behavior for the purpose of getting someone in trouble is similarly prohibited and will
not be tolerated. Retaliation and intentionally false reports may result in disciplinary action as
indicated above.
The following definitions are provided for guidance only. If a student or other individual believes
there has been aggressive behavior, regardless of whether it fits a particular definition, s/he should
report it and allow the administration to determine the appropriate course of action.
"Bullying" is defined as a person willfully and repeatedly exercising power or control over another
with hostile or malicious intent (i.e., repeated oppression, physical or psychological, of a less
powerful individual by a more powerful individual or group). Bullying can be physical, verbal (oral
or written), electronically transmitted, psychological (e.g., emotional abuse), through attacks on the
property of another, or a combination of any of these. Some examples of bullying are:
      A.    Physical – hitting, kicking, spitting, pushing, pulling, taking and/or damaging personal
            belongings or extorting money, blocking or impeding student movement, unwelcome
            physical contact.

      B.    Verbal – taunting, malicious teasing, insulting, name calling, making threats.
      C.    Psychological – spreading rumors, manipulating social relationships, coercion, or
            engaging in social exclusion/shunning, extortion, or intimidation.
                                                   7
D.    "Cyber bullying" – the use of information and communication technologies such as
            email, cell phone and pager text messages, instant messaging (IM), defamatory personal
            web sites, and defamatory online personal polling web sites, to support deliberate,
            repeated, and hostile behavior by an individual or group, that is intended to harm
            others." [Bill Belsey (http//www.cyberbullying.ca) ]
            The Board recognizes that cyberbullying can be particularly devastating to young people
            because:

            1.   cyberbullies more easily hide behind the anonymity that the Internet provides;
            2.   cyberbullies spread their hurtful messages to a very wide audience with remarkable
                 speed;
            3.   cyberbullies do not have to own their own actions, as it is usually very difficult to
                 identify cyberbullies because of screen names, so they do not fear being punished
                 for their actions; and
            4.   The reflection time that once existed between the planning of a prank – or a serious
                 stunt – and its commission is all but been erased when it comes to cyberbullying
                 activity.

                  Cyberbullying includes, but is not limited to the following:

            1.   posting slurs or rumors or other disparaging remarks about a student on a web site
                 or on weblog;
            2.   sending e-mail or instant messages that are mean or threatening, or so numerous as
                 to drive-up the victim’s cell phone bill;
            3.   using a camera phone to take and send embarrassing photographs of students;
            4.   Posting misleading or fake photographs of students on web sites.

"Harassment" includes, but is not limited to, any act which subjects an individual or group to
unwanted, abusive behavior of a nonverbal, verbal, written or physical nature on the basis of age,
race, religion, color, national origin, marital status or disability (sexual orientation, physical
characteristic, cultural background, socioeconomic status, or geographic location).
"Intimidation" includes, but is not limited to, any threat or act intended to tamper, substantially
damage or interfere with another's property, cause substantial inconvenience, subject another to
offensive physical contact or inflict serious physical injury on the basis of race, color, religion,
national origin or sexual orientation.
"Menacing" includes, but is not limited to, any act intended to place a school employee, student, or
third party in fear of imminent serious physical injury.
"Harassment, intimidation, or bullying" means any act that substantially interferes with a
student's educational benefits, opportunities, or performance, that takes place on or immediately
adjacent to school grounds, at any school-sponsored activity, on school–provided transportation or
at any official school bus stop, and that has the effect of:
      A.    physically harming a student or damaging a student's property;

      B.    knowingly placing a student in reasonable fear of physical harm to the student or
            damage to the student's property; or
                                                   8
C.     Creating a hostile educational environment.

"Staff" includes all school employees and Board members.
"Third parties" include, but are not limited to, coaches, school volunteers, parents, school visitors,
service contractors, vendors, or others engaged in District business, and others not directly subject to
school control at inter-district or intra-district athletic competitions or other school events.
For a definition of and instances that could possibly be construed as hazing, consult Policy 5516.
Privacy/Confidentiality
The School District will respect the privacy of the complainant, the individual(s) against who the
complaint is filed, and the witnesses as much as possible, consistent with the Board’s legal
obligations to investigate, to take appropriate action, and to conform with any discovery or
disclosure obligations. All records generated under this policy and its related administrative
guidelines shall be maintained as confidential to the extent permitted by law.
Notification
Notice of this policy will be annually circulated to and posted in conspicuous locations in all school
buildings and departments within the District and discussed with students, as well as incorporated
into the teacher, student, and parent/guardian handbooks. State and Federal rights posters on
discrimination and harassment shall also be posted at each building. All new hires will be required
to review and sign off on this policy and the related complaint procedure.
Education and Training
In support of this policy, the Board promotes preventative educational measures to create greater
awareness of aggressive behavior, including bullying. The Superintendent or designee shall provide
appropriate training to all members of the School District community related to the implementation
of this policy and its accompanying administrative guidelines. All training regarding the Board’s
policy and administrative guidelines and aggressive behavior and bullying in general will be age and
content appropriate.
The Superintendent is directed to develop administrative guidelines to implement this policy.
Guidelines shall include reporting and investigative procedures, as needed. The complaint procedure
established by the Superintendent shall be followed.
Adopted
Revised 6/06/16

           Miami Trace Middle School and High School Behavior Matrix
                                                   9
Stairs,             Restrooms        Cafeteria       Bus               Classroom
                hallways, &
                between
                buildings
Treat           - Maintain          - Keep the       - Take          - Keep            -Be
others as       appropriate         restroom         your turn       hands and         considerate
you want        personal            clean.           in line.        feet to           of others.
to be           space.              - Finish                         yourself.         -Be a good
treated.        - Use               and exit                                           listener and
                appropriate         promptly.                                          a willing
                language.                                                              participant
                - Follow the                                                           in all class
                dress code.                                                            activities.
Every           - Keep track        - Use the        - Know          - Maintain        -Be on time
day, come       of time.            restroom         your            your              for class
prepared        - Be aware          before           lunch           possession        with all
to learn.       of your             school and       choice          s in an           required
                surroundings        between          before          organized         materials.
                .                   classes.         you get         fashion.
                                                     to the
                                                     head of
                                                     the line.
Always          - Keep noise        - Honor          - Be            - Use             -Be
be              to a                privacy.         patient.        appropriate       respectful of
respectful      minimum.            - Use            - Be            language          school
.               - Keep              appropriat       courteou        and               property,
                surroundings        e language       s to staff      volume.           others’
                clean.              and              and each                          property and
                - Hold doors.       volume.          other.                            teacher
                - Help others                                                          possessions.
                in need.
Make            - Pay               - Be             - Clean         Follow            -Fulfill
good            attention to        sanitary.        up after        safety and        classroom
choices.        others              - Report         yourself.       handbook          expectations
                around you.         safety                           procedures        .
                - Only use          issues.                          .
                your locker
                and keep it
                locked.
                - Be aware
                of the late
                bell.

DIRECTORY
Miami Trace Board of Education.................................................................335-3010
                                                             10
Mike Henry, President
Charlie Andrews, Vice President
Rob Dawson
Bruce Kirkpatrick
David Miller

CENTRAL OFFICE

Mr. David L. Lewis                                                   Superintendent
Mrs. Kim Pittser                                                     Asst. Superintendent/Civil Rights
Compliance Officer
Mrs. Debbie Black                                                    Treasurer
Ms. Jaqueline Morris                                                 Special Education Supervisor
Mrs. Amy O’Dierno                                                    Special Education Supervisor
Mr. Bill Franke.                                                     Business Manager/Transportation
Mr. Gary Campbell                                                    Food Service Coordinator
Mrs. Amy Gustin                                                      Instructional Technology
Director
Mr. Jack Anders                                                      Safety and Attendance Officer

**We request that all concerns be addressed at the proper level. Matters regarding the education,
health, and welfare of your child should be directed to the building administrator, teacher, or support
staff first.

MIAMI TRACE MIDDLE SCHOOL STAFF

Mr. Jason Binegar jbinegar@mtpanthers.org                            Principal
Mrs. Debbie Southward dsouthward@mtpanthers.org                        Assist. Principal
Mrs. Katie Abbott kabbott@mtpanthers.org                             Curriculum Director
Mrs. Jennifer Enochs jenochs@mtpanthers.org                          Counselor
Mr. Matthew Smart msmart@mtpanthers.org                              Psychologist
Ms. Jaqueline Morris jmorris@mtpanthers.org                          Special Ed. Supervisor
Mrs. Shasta Preston spreston@mtpanthers.org                          Speech Pathologist
Mr. Brandon Armstrong barmstrong@mtpanthers.org                      Social Studies
Mrs. Tiffany Bennett tbennett@mtpanthers.org                         English/Literature
Ms. Rebekah Bennett rbennett@mtpanthers.org                           Intervention Specialist
Mrs. Susie Berry sberry@mtpanthers.org                               English/Literature
Ms. Bridgette Bowers bbowers@mtpanthers.org                          Math
Mrs. D.J. Brandt dbrandt@mtpanthers.org                              Science
Ms. Katelyn Chester kchester@mtpanthers.org                          Intervention Specialist
Mrs. Melanie Cockerill mcockerill@mtpanthers.org                       Social Studies
Mrs. Victoria Cockerill vcockerill@mtrpanthers.org                   Math
Mrs. Nicole Cook ncook@mtpanthers.org                                 Intervention Specialist
Mr. Bill Cooper bcooper@mtpanthers.org                               CBIP Instructor
Mrs. Courtney Donson cdonson@mtpanthers.org                          English/Literature
Ms. Paige Eddlemon peddlemon@mtpanthers.org                          Science
Mr. Brian Eggleton beggleton@mtpanthers.org                           Social Studies
Mrs.Lindsay Elliott lelliott@mtpanthers.org                          English/Literature
Mrs. Casey Enochs cenochs@mtpanthers.org                              Intervention Specialist
                                                  11
Mrs. Jamie Etzler jetzler@mtpanthers.org            English/Literature
Mrs. Mindy Frye mfrye@mtpanthers.org                English/Literature
Miss Julie Garringer jgarringer@mtpanthers.org       Physical Education
Mrs. Loree Goddard lgoddard@mtpanthers.org          Math
Ms. Taylor Evans tevans@mtpanthers.org              Instr.Music
Mr. Aaron Hauer ahauer@mtpanthers.org               Science
Mr. Ken Hoffman khoffman@mtpanthers.org             Inst. Music
Ms. Angela Hudson ahudson@mtpanthers.org            Interv.Specialist
Ms. Mina Jones mjones@mtpanthers.org                Social Studies
Mrs. Sarah Kelley skelley@mtpanthers.org             Intervention Specialist
Mrs. Amanda McCoy amccoy@mtpanthers.org             Math
Mrs. Anita Miller amiller@mtpanthers.org            English/Literature
Mr. Travis Miller tmiller@mtpanthers.org            Tech App.
Mrs. Lyndsey Mincey lmincey@mtpanthers.org          Art
Mrs. Kim Palm kpalm@mtpanthers.org                  L. Arts
Mrs. Rhonda Pursell rpursell@mtpanthers.org         Science
Ms. Elyse Ream eream@mtpanthers.org                 Math
Mr. Rob Smith rsmith@mtpanthers.org                 Intervention Specialist
Mrs. Addie Stasko astasko@mtpanthers.org            Vocal Music
Mrs. Kelly Sword ksword@mtpanthers.org               Intervention Specialist
Mr. Eric Tattersall etattersall@mtpanthers          Math
Mr. David Thomas dthomas@mtpanthers.org             Math
Ms. Michelle Teis mteis@mtpanthers.org              Math
Mrs. Mary Vidourek
mvidourek@mtpanthers.org                            English/Literature
Mrs. Krista Wells kwells@mtpanthers.org             Math
Mrs. Jenny Makselan jmakselan@mtpanthers.org        Secretary
Mrs. Edie Kay Jacobs ejacobs@mtpanthers.org         Secretary
Mrs. Dawn Dawson ddawson@mtpanthers.org             Secretary
Mr. Philip Gaulin pgaulin@mtpanthers.org            Educational Aide
Mrs. Sherry Perkins sperkins@mtpanthers.org         Educational Aide
Mrs. Heidi Salyers hsalyers@mtpanthers.org          Educational Aide
Mrs. LeAnn Wolford lwolford@mtpanthers.org          Educational Aide
Mrs. Dawn Dawson dadawson@mtpanthers.org            Handicap Attendant
Ms. Kim Butcher kbutcher@mtpanthers.org             Handicap Attendant
Mrs. Debbie Miller dmiller@mtpanthers.org           Head Cook
Ms. Jennifer Pauley jpauley@mtpanthers.org          Cook
Mrs. Linda Hays lhays@mtpanthers.org                Cook
Mrs. Daisy Shiltz dshiltz@mtpanthers.org            Cook
Mrs. Misty Dessaro mdessaro@mtpanthers.org          Cook
Mrs. Megan Hall mhall@mtpanthers.org                Head Custodian
Mr. Donnie Barnhart dbarnhart@mtpanthers.org        Custodian
Ms. Karin Brown kbrown@mtpanthers.org               Custodian
Mr. Cathy Riley criley@mtpanthers.org               Cook
Mr. Lester Beers lbeers@mtpanthers.org              Custodian

                                               12
13
VISITORS
   We encourage parents to visit and discuss the progress of their child with a teacher, counselor, or
administrator. Due to very busy schedules, please try to utilize staff email.
It would be beneficial to all parties if parents would call in advance and set an appointment. If an
urgent need arises and an appointment is inappropriate, parents are expected to report to the
principal's office to notify officials of their presence.
  Student visitation will be permitted only if an educational objective is met. This visitation is
allowed only if prior permission is secured from the principal. If visitation is granted by the
principal, it should be noted that the visitor will have to furnish his or her transportation to and from
school. Visitors are not permitted to ride the school bus due to liability concerns.
State law requires that all visitors report to the principal's office. State identification will be
required (Driver’s Licence, or State Issued ID).

SCHOOL DAY

Normal Schedule

  The school day for Miami Trace Middle School is from 7:30 a.m. to 2:25 p.m. The school
personnel assume the duty of care for arriving students at 715 A.M. The school will not be
responsible for the supervision of non-bus students before 7:10 a.m. or after 2:40 p.m.
  If parents have made arrangements to pick a child up at school at the end of the day, it is very
important that the parent be on time.
If a student has been allowed to attend an after-school or evening activity, parents must make
arrangements for their child's transportation home. Parents who do not make such arrangements
may subject their child to a potentially dangerous situation.
  If a child repeatedly arrives early or stays at school after school is dismissed, the parent may be
contacted by the principal and the circumstances discussed.
* Parents are to pick up students out front after the buses have gone.

Unexpected Dismissal

  During the winter months, it may be necessary to cancel or dismiss school early because of the
weather. Do not call the principal or teachers concerning school dismissal. As soon as the decision
is made, the announcement will be aired on WCHO 105.5 FM, the Miami Trace Web-site, and the
Miami Trace call out system (phone call and/or text - if you participate in the program).
  Arrangements must be made at the beginning of the school year with a neighbor or someone close
that can take care of your child in case school is dismissed early. If your child must ride a different
bus or get off at a different location, a written notice must be on file with the office.

ATTENDANCE

I. Goal:

The goal of the Miami Trace school district is that no student should miss any
days of school without legitimate excuse. A significant correlation exists
                                                   14
between school attendance and academic and lifelong success.

II. Attendance Guidelines

   A. The attendance policy will cover each semester that the student is
      enrolled;
   B. Each Student will be permitted a maximum of sixty (60) hours of
      absences per school year without independent verification; i.e. doctor
      excuse, etc.
   C. Until a student accumulates sixty (60) hours of absences in a school
      year, a note or a phone call from the parent or guardian will excuse the
      absence for one of the reasons listed below. If a note or phone call is
      not provided to the school by the parent or guardian within forty-eight
      (48) hours, i.e. two business days, of the student’s return to school, the
      absence will be unexcused;

III. Legitimate Excusable Absences

After a student has accumulated sixty (60) hours of absences (excused or
unexcused) in a school year, absences will only be excused under the following
circumstances:

A. Short Term Personal Illness: For a student who has been absent for sixty
(60) hours in a school year, any further absence for personal illness will require
a doctor’s excuse. The doctor’s excuse must be signed by the doctor and
indicate that the student was seen by the doctor personally and state the
reason for the student’s inability to attend school. Any absence greater than
sixty (60) hours in a school year due to illness that is not accompanied by a
doctor’s excuse as described above will be unexcused. A doctor’s excuse must
be provided to the school within forty-eight (48) hours, i.e. two business
days, of the student’s return to school or the absence will be unexcused. If an
excuse is not accepted by the school, the original will be returned to the
student with a notation as to why it was refused, e.g., excuse not provided
within the property time period, excuse not written by a doctor, etc.. A copy of
the refused excuse will be maintained in the student’s file.

B. Long Term Personal Illness: If the student suffers a long term illness
requiring extended absence from school, a doctor’s excuse must be provided
to the school every twenty (20) school days. The doctor’s excuse must indicate
that the student was seen personally by the doctor, the reason for the
student’s continued inability to attend school, and provide specific dates which
are to be excused. If an excuse is not accepted by the school, the original will
be returned to the student with a notation as to why it was refused, e.g.,
                                             15
excuse not provided within the property time period, excuse not written by a
doctor, etc.. A copy of the refused excuse will be maintained in the student’s
file.
C. Chronic Illness: Absences for a chronic medical condition (asthma,
migraines, etc.) may be approved in advance by the student’s healthcare
provider, i.e. physician, nurse practitioner, or physician assistant, without the
need for the student to be seen by the healthcare provider. Parents shall
obtain this Waiver from the school nurse, administrator, or administrative
assistant. Once approved by the healthcare provider and on file with the
school, the parent shall provide written documentation for any absence of the
specific chronic condition as long as the chronic condition is mentioned in the
parent note. The Waiver is valid for August-December and shall be renewed
for January-June.

D. Head Lice: Students who are excluded from school due to head lice are
allowed fourteen (14) hours of excused absences with two (2) occurrences per
year, maximum. Days beyond the fourteen (14) hour limit or days beyond the
two (2) permissible occurrences per year are unexcused.

E. Illness or Injury in the Family: Independent verification by a physician
explaining the nature and severity of the illness or injury to the family member
requiring the student to be absent will be required within forty-eight (48)
hours, i.e. two business days, of the student’s return to school. If an excuse is
not accepted by the school, the original will be returned to the student with a
notation as to why it was refused, e.g., excuse not provided within the
property time period, excuse not written by a doctor, etc.. A copy of the
refused excuse will be maintained in the student’s file.

F. Quarantine of the Home: Absences will only be excused for the length of
quarantine as determined by health officials. Verification from relevant health
officials explaining the nature and length of the quarantine must be submitted
within forty-eight (48) hours, i.e. two business days, of the student’s return to
school. If an excuse is not accepted by the school, the original will be returned
to the student with a notation as to why it was refused, e.g., excuse not
provided within the property time period, excuse not written by a doctor, etc..
A copy of the refused excuse will be maintained in the student’s file.

G. Death in the Family: Three days absence will be permitted, unless a parent
or guardian offers a reasonable explanation that more school absences are
necessary. The parent or guardian may provide a note to the school to advise
the school of the absence, however under certain circumstances, the school
may require additional documentation to confirm the student’s absence was
legitimate i.e. funeral service documentation, etc.
                                             16
H. Observance of Religious Holidays: Any student shall be excused if his/her
absence was for the purpose of observing a religious holiday consistent with
his/her truly held beliefs and the parent or guardian has notified the school in
writing at least forty-eight (48) hours prior, , i.e. two business days, to the
absence.

I. College Visits, Take Your Student to Work Day, Job Interviews, Job
Shadowing, Armed Services Tests, and Professional Appointments: The total
of these absences may not exceed twenty-one (21) hours without the specific
approval of the principal or superintendent. Students with excessive absences
(thirty-five (35) or more hours in a quarter) may have such absences denied.
The absence must receive prior approval by the school and verification of the
student’s attendance at the activity must be provided to the school within 48
(forty-eight) hours, i.e. two business days, of the student’s return to be
excused. For events that require absence for part of a day, the student’s
absence will only be excused for the time necessary to attend the event.

J. Court Appointments: In the instance that the presence of the student is
required in a court of law, the absence will be excused if documentation
showing that the student’s presence was required within forty-eight (48)
hours, i.e. two business days, of the student’s return to school.

K. Vacations: Vacations shall be excused only if pre-approved by the school
principal. Students with excessive absences (thirty-five (35) or more hours in
a quarter) may have such absences denied;

L.Other: The school superintendent or principal must approve, at their
discretion, the excusal of absences not otherwise covered in this section.

IV. Unexcused Absences

    A. Any absence other than those described above.

    B. The school administration will make the final determination as to
       whether an absence is excused, but in general, unexcused absences
       include, but are not limited to:
           a. Missing the school bus.
           b. Experiencing transportation problems at home or on the way
               to school.
           c. Remaining at home to complete school assignments.
           d. Missing school without legitimate illness.
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e.   Oversleeping.
           f.   “My mom didn’t get me up.”
           g.   Not having suitable clothing to wear to school.
           h.   Working at a job during the school day without a proper work
                permit.
           i.   Babysitting.
           j.   Any form of recreation (unless pre-approved vacation days).
           k.   Personal business that can be done after school or on the
                weekends.
           l.   “Helping at home” or “was needed at home.”
           m.   “I had a game last night.”
           n.   Pictures or portraits.
           o.   Hunting season.

V. Absence Notification Procedures

   A. Immediate Notification: As a result of the Missing Student Act, a
      student’s parent/guardian is required to contact the school office
      between 9:00 a.m. and 11:00 a.m. on the day of the absence;
          i. If the school does not hear from the parent/guardian, school
              officials are obligated to attempt to make contact with a
              parent/guardian to verify the absence. We will attempt to
              contact you by phone.
          ii. A reported absence may still be determined to be unexcused
              according to the absence policy.

   B.   Ways of Reporting Absences: Absences will be considered reported if:
          i. A parent or guardian calls the school the day of the absence
               and provides the reason for the absence;
          ii. A parent or guardian writes a note or provides other required
               documentation to the school listing the day(s) missed and the
               reason for the absence(s);
          iii. School officials make contact with a parent or guardian and
               receive a satisfactory explanation for the absence(s).

VI. Truancy Definitions and Intervention Procedures

   A. If a student is absent without legitimate excuse for eighteen (18) hours
      in a school year, the parent or guardian will be notified by letter.

   B. If a student is absent without legitimate excuse for thirty (30) hours in
      a school year, the student will be referred to the Miami Trace Absence
      Intervention Team.
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C. Once a student is absent for thirty-eight (38) hours in a month or sixty
        five (65) or more hours in a year, the student’s parent or guardian will
        be notified of the excessive absenteeism by letter. The school may, at
        that time, implement an intervention strategy that has been adopted
        by the school. (RC 3321.191(C)(1))

     D. Under Ohio law, a student is considered habitually truant if the
        student is absent from school without legitimate excuse for thirty (30)
        consecutive hours, forty-two (42) hours in one school month, or
        seventy-two (72) hours in a school year. (RC 2151.011)

     E. Once a student becomes habitually truant, the school will intervene
        with the student for a period of sixty (60) days. Said intervention may
        include the participation of an absence intervention team. (RC
        3321.191(C)(2))
            a. If the student accumulates significant absences or does not
                make progress during this sixty-day period, truancy charges
                will be referred to the Fayette County Juvenile Courts for court
                filing.

     F. Charges may be brought against the parent or guardian of a truant
        student for Failing to Send a Child to School or Contributing to the
        Unruliness or Delinquency of a Minor. (RC 2919.24 & RC 3321.38)

Parent/Guardian's Role in Attendance

1.       Be aware of responsibilities regarding your child’s school attendance.
2.       Actively encourage attendance.
3.       Notify school each day your child is absent by phoning 333-4900 between 7:00 and 9:30
         a.m. Parents may request make-up school work at this time.
4.       If no parent contact is made, the student is required to bring a note from parent/guardian
         explaining the absence within 48 hours.
5.       After 3 absences in a grading period, in order for absences to be excused, a doctor’s note,
         court representative’s note, or health department officials’ note is needed for each absence.
         We must receive the doctor’s note within 48 hours.

Students Role in Attendance

1.       Be aware of responsibilities regarding your attendance and makeup work.
2.       When parents send a note with you to school please give it to the office upon arriving.
3.       Ask each teacher upon your return for any make-up work that needs to be completed.
4.       Turn in to each teacher all make-up work assigned to you

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Determination of Absence

    ●    If a student leaves school before 8:45am and does not return, he/she will be considered
         absent the full day. If a student leaves after 2:00 P.M. he/she will be counted present for
         the full day. A notation that the student left early will be made on his/her attendance. If
         the student leaves between 8:45am and 2:00pm, he/she will be counted absent for a ½ day.
         In order for a student to be counted present for ½ day, he or she must arrive at school by
         11:30 am

Differentiation between Excused and Unexcused Absence

          If a student is absent from school and the determination is made that it is an excused
absence, that entitles the student to request and makeup all daily work missed. A student has as
many days as they were absent to make up work. A teacher may refuse to accept makeup work for
assignments, projects, or tests if they were announced in advance.
If a student is absent and the determination of absence is unexcused (no note, no doctor’s note), the
teacher may refuse to allow student to make-up any work.

MAKING UP SCHOOL WORK:

It is the student's responsibility to make up work missed due to absence. Students choosing not to
make up work will receive a grade of zero (0) for each day absent. Make-up work must be
completed in all courses in as many days as the student was absent, unless other arrangements are
made with the teacher. The schedule for make-up work may be adjusted by the teacher in cases of
long-term illness or absences near the end of the school year.

HOMEBOUND INSTRUCTION:

The school may arrange for individual instruction at home for students who are unable to attend
school because of an accident, illness, or disability. Such instruction may be arranged upon receipt
of documentation of the student’s condition from a physician. For more information, contact the
building principal.

PERMISSION TO LEAVE SCHOOL EARLY:

If a student must leave school early, the parent should put the request in writing. The parent or
responsible adult must come into the building, present state identification (Driver’s License, or State
ID) so that he/she may be identified and can sign the child out. The sign-out sheet will include the
child's name, reason for leaving, time of departure, and with whom the child has left. These
precautions are designed to protect the safety of the child.

SUPERVISION RESPONSIBILITY TO AND FROM SCHOOL:

The school is directly responsible for supervision of students only while they are on school property
during school hours. Once they leave school property, supervision becomes the responsibility of the
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parents. The school will cooperate with parents in stressing the rules of safety to and from school
and will assist with discipline problems that occur between home and school. Misbehavior that
occurs off school property is a police matter.

CLASS PARTICIPATION:

Students are expected to participate in all classes. Exceptions will be permitted only with a doctor's
written excuse.

VOLUNTEERS

Miami Trace Middle School welcomes volunteers. Parents, grandparents, and friends may give
their time to assist teachers and students in activities throughout the year.
Volunteers may be involved in chaperoning field trips, aiding children with school work, helping
staff members with assigned work, or other activities. Persons interested in doing volunteer work
should contact the school and complete the process to gain board approval (application,
fingerprinted, background check, etc.).

PROGRAMS - SCHOOL

Guidance

 Students are urged to take advantage of the guidance program. The counselor helps students with
scheduling, becoming aware of different vocations, explaining standardized tests, understanding
peer relationships, and many personal problems that a maturing teenager may have. Parents may call
at any time to take advantage of the guidance services. Changes in parental custody during the
school year should be promptly reported to the guidance office.

The Counseling Source Inc. also works closely with the Miami Trace Local School District by
providing on-site mental health services. If you feel your son or daughter would benefit please
contact the school counselor to receive information about the program.

Special Education

The Miami Trace District provides classes or supplemental services for children with visual,
hearing, orthopedic, emotional, speech, health, or general learning disabilities. Some of these classes
or services are provided in cooperation with other districts in the area. These classes are taught by
specially trained teachers, and allow the child to progress at his or her own rate of speed. Many of
our special education students receive instruction in regular classes with the assistance of additional
teachers. This alternative service delivery option is known as an inclusion class. Children must be
given a thorough battery of tests to determine whether they are eligible for special education classes
or services. Parents participate in the decision as to whether their child receives special education.
Parents with questions should contact their child's principal or the district Special Education
Director (for secondary grades) at 740 - 333 - 4900.

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Library

Students may be assigned a time to go to the library from study hall or language arts class unless
other circumstances dictate. The library is to be used for checking out books, doing research,
reading quietly and silent study. Students are expected to follow all procedures as established by the
librarian, including the checking out and return of materials. Fines will be levied for the late
return of library materials and charges assessed for lost or damaged books, and fees will be
carried over into the next year. Students who do not follow the rules and regulations of library
use may lose their library privileges as well as dances or other student rewards.

Field Trips

Field trips are an integral part of the educational experiences of students. Parents will be asked to
sign permission slips when children take field trips. Permission slips need to be returned by the
deadline established to allow all needed preparations for the trip to be made. It is the responsibility
of each student to turn in permission slips as required. Students may be denied the privilege of
participating on a field trip for behavioral concerns.

ACTIVITIES - STUDENT

Student Council

The purpose of the student council is to promote harmonious understanding between the student
body and the faculty, to provide a medium for student expression, and to give students experience in
democratic practices and parliamentary procedure. Membership shall consist of the president, vice-
president, secretary, treasurer, and representatives. Officers are elected by the student body from a
group of qualified candidates. To be qualified as an officer, a student must maintain at least a 3.0
grade point average and exhibit qualities of leadership, character, and service.
Other student council members must maintain at least a 2.5 grade point average as well as exhibit
qualities of leadership, character, and service. Students may be denied or expelled from student
council for displaying inappropriate behavior and/or receiving a consequence of ISD, AHS, OSS,
Alternative School, etc.

Choir
Miami Trace Middle School conducts a seventh grade choir and an eighth grade choir under the
direction of the vocal music teacher. Students may try out for the choir in the spring of the year.
Selections are made and the choir meets throughout the following year. Choir members will be
subject to rules and regulations established for the choir.

Dances/Skating Party / Other Events

 Dances and other Good Behavior Social Functions are held periodically throughout the school
year. Sponsors of organizations wishing to have a social function must make arrangements with the
principal and/or assistant principal at least two weeks before the event. This includes the approval
of chaperones, security, D.J., and custodial arrangements.
 Students attending events must have signed permission slips. Parents are responsible for making
arrangements for picking up their children at the scheduled conclusion of the function. School

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personnel will not be responsible for supervision beyond fifteen minutes after the conclusion of the
event.
 Dances, skating parties, etc. may be attended only by Miami Trace Middle School students, unless
otherwise noted. The signed permission slips must be presented to the sponsor for admittance. Once
a student leaves the activity, he or she will not be permitted to return.
 All school rules apply, will be observed. Students may be denied admittance to events due to
behavioral problems they have had throughout the year. Students may also be denied admittance
due to unpaid school fees.

Athletics

Miami Trace Middle School offers several athletic opportunities for students. In the fall, students
have the opportunity to play football, volleyball, run cross country or participate in cheerleading.
Winter sports include basketball, wrestling, and cheerleading. In the spring, track and field is
offered to both boys and girls.
Miami Trace adheres to requirements established by the Ohio High School Athletic Association and
the Miami Trace Athletic Department. The athletic program is designed to allow students an
opportunity to participate in sports, learn and develop skills associated with the sport, develop team
spirit and good sportsmanship, and have fun. To participate in a sporting event on a school day
students need to be present ½ of the school day. Students need to sign in before 11:30 p.m., or sign
out after 11:30 p.m. (See Athletic Code)

ATHLETE AND CHEERLEADER CODE

Students who participate in athletics or cheerleading must accept the responsibility of good
sportsmanship and citizenship. A denial of participation from any athletic activity may be given to a
student who does not accept this responsibility.
All athletes and cheerleaders are subject to the rules and regulations set forth by the Fayette County
Board of Education and the Ohio High School Athletic Association concerning conduct at school or
at extra-curricular activities. The principal, assistant principal, or coach may remove an individual
from a team for violation of these rules. It is understood that, in addition to the statements below,
students will be dealt with according to the Student/Parent handbook. MTMS cheerleading policy
remains the same and is not similar to high school policy.

RULES
1. Possession and/or use of tobacco while sport is in season will result in:
A. 1st offense - 5 days denial of participation to include a minimum of 1 contest.
B. 2nd offense - dismissal from team immediately and forfeiture of rights as a team member.
2. Possession and/or use of illegal drugs or alcohol while sport is in season will result in immediate
dismissal from the team and forfeiture of all rights as a team member.
3. Any athlete who commits a felony while his or her sport is in season will result in dismissal from
team immediately and forfeit of all rights as a team member.
4. Improper conduct - Improper conduct by any athlete or cheerleader will not be tolerated. Any
action by an athlete or cheerleader that results in a negative reflection upon the school, team, or
community may lead to a denial of participation.
The Principal, Athletic Director, and head coach will review these instances.
5. Appeal - A due process hearing can be granted to any athlete or cheerleader who has been
suspended from his or her squad.

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6. Appeal Process - The Athletic Director will grant an appeal hearing to any athlete or
cheerleader who has been suspended, or dismissed from a team. If satisfaction is not gained by the
student at a hearing with the principal, athletic director, coach or advisor, an appeal may be made to
the superintendent and Governing Board of Education.
The following rules and regulations, above and beyond those established for the general student
body, govern all those who participate under the sponsorship of Miami Trace Middle School
Athletic Department. Head coaches and advisors are responsible for the discipline of their
individual teams. They are to develop specific rules that are to be on file with the athletic director
and are to be given to all team members by the specific head coach or advisor.
Membership in a sport begins with the first day of legal practice of that sport and ends with the last
contest. When an athlete or cheerleader is suspended or quits one sport, he or she is not eligible to
join another sports team until the end of the season of the sport from which he or she quit or was
suspended. Awards and honors may be withheld from an athlete or cheerleader if a violation occurs
after the last contest and before the team’s post-season banquet.

MIDDLE SCHOOL ATHLETIC ELIGIBILITY POLICY
Passing grades must have been received in minimum of 5 subjects in which enrolled in the
immediately preceding grading period. Example – if you have 5 classes you must pass all 5 to be
eligible. If you have 6 classes, you must pass 5, etc.

CONSEQUENCES OF INELIGIBILITY

1. If a student has not passed a minimum of 5 courses during a nine week period, the student will be
ineligible the following nine week period.
2. If a student is ineligible due to academic or behavioral reasons, the athlete will be designated a
non-competing member who is eligible for practice unless he or she is serving an ISD, AHS or OSS.
He or she will be informed of the ineligibility and potential future consequences if their deficiencies
continue. ANY STUDENT RECEIVING AHS, ALTERNATIVE SCHOOL OR OSS, MAY
BE SUSPENDED FOR THE ENTIRE SEASON.
3. If a student is ineligible for academically or behavioral reasons for a second time, whether it is
consecutive or recurring non-consecutive, the athlete will be designated a non-competing member of
the squad who is eligible to practice unless serving an ISD, AHS or OSS. The athlete will be
informed of the ineligibility and the consequences of the next ineligibility.
4. If a student is ineligible academically or behaviorally for a third time, within a season, whether
consecutive or recurring non-consecutive, the athlete will be designated a non-competing, non-
practicing member of the squad.
Teachers, Administrators, Principal, Assistant Principal, Athletic Director, and head coach or acting
team representative will evaluate the student athlete's present academic and behavior status. The
athlete may be placed on a two week suspension. When the suspension period concludes, a re-
evaluation will occur. If academic and/or behavior deficiencies have improved to the approved
standard levels, the athlete may be reinstated at the discretion of the evaluators. Should the season
end during this two week evaluation period, the student athlete will not be considered in good
standing with the team and he or she will not be eligible to receive postseason awards or be able to
attend the banquet.

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SCHOOL SPONSORED / NON SCHOOL SPONSORED ACTIVITIES

According to the Miami Trace Athletic Handbook, when a student is accepted on a school
sponsored team, the school sponsored team must be their first priority. Participation on a non
school sponsored team is secondary. The student will be subjected to the coach’s policy if there is a
participation conflict.

POLICIES-EVALUATION
District Grading Scale
The Board recognizes the place and priority of assessment of student performance on a fair,
appropriate, and consistent basis. In order to ensure fairness and consistency throughout the district,
the Board recognizes the need for a uniform grading scale.
The following grade scale will be utilized in all academic classes from grade one through high
school.
92-100 A
83-91 B
70-82 C
60-69 D
Below 60 F

Grades and homework can be checked on Progress Book, an online way to check on your
student’s progress. Your child will be given a parent ID access in early fall from Mrs. Gustin
from our Central Office. Please call Mrs. Gustin if you did not receive a number.

While the selection of factors and determination of relative weight of various aspects of school
performance is left up to the professional discretion of the individual teacher, all teachers will use
the above scale to determine summary grades for students' report cards.
Any deviation from the above scale shall be done only with the approval of the principal and the
knowledge of students and parents.

Retention

A student may be retained and asked to repeat a grade level if:

              1.    The student receives an “F” in two core subjects for their final grade for the year.
              2.   The student has an excess of absences for the year (will work with the Attendance
                   and Safety Officer).

Summer School = If summer school is an option and is available, some students may be
required to attend in order to transfer or pass to the next grade.

                                                   25
Homework
Parents and students should expect homework and study assignments in all subjects at all grade
levels. Developing the organization and self-discipline to regularly complete homework and study
assignments is a significant goal of our program.
The parent's responsibilities for homework and studying include: (1) assisting their child in finding a
well-lit, quiet place to work, (2) establishing a regular time to complete homework and studying
(3)being available to provide help when their child is confused about an assignment, (4) helping the
child develop ways to keep track of assignments in an organized manner, and (5) showing that they
care about homework and grades(and school in general) by asking questions about the lesson and
insisting that their child keep up with assignments. We expect you to come to class prepared.
Failure to do so may result in disciplinary action based on individual teacher policy or school policy.

Grades and Interim Progress Reports
 Grades will be sent home at the end of the 2nd nine weeks and fourth nine weeks, however, you
can view student grades at anytime from Progress Book. The grades the student earns are generally
based on daily class work, homework grades, tests scores, and class participation. Certain courses
may include projects or other requirements which will contribute to the report card grade. Effort,
attendance, and other factors may also influence a student's grade.
 Each teacher will decide the method to be used in determining nine weeks grades. If you have a
question or concern in this area, please get in touch with your child's teacher as soon as possible.
 The Interim Progress Report is sent out near the midpoint of grading periods. It is designed to
keep parents informed in a general manner as to their child's achievement.

Honor Roll and Honorable Mention
 The purpose of honor roll and honorable mention is to recognize students for scholastic excellence.
Students who have a grade point average of 3.5 or better will be recognized as honor roll students.
Honorable mention students are students whose grade point average is from 3.0 to 3.49. A grade of
D or F for any subject disqualifies a student from both the honor roll and honorable mention.
 In determining a student's grade point average, reading, English, math, foreign language, and
history carry full weight. Health and music are equivalent to one-half with art, phys. ed., and band
equivalent to one-fourth.

POLICIES - GENERAL
Immunization
State law requires that schools have on file the immunization records of all students. Schools are
required to exclude students who do not have records on file or who have not had all required
immunizations after fourteen days.

Medication to Students
  The Ohio General Assembly has enacted a statute under which teachers and administrators can
administer prescription drugs to students. The law sets forth six requirements which must be met
before the employee can administer the drug under either the board's policy or pursuant to federal
law:
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