John Glenn School Corporation
Administrative Guidelines
 

5611 - DUE PROCESS

The following administrative guidelines should be followed to safeguard a studentís constitutional rights:

 

A.

Procedural Due Process

 
 

In any disciplinary situation, a student must be afforded minimum procedural due process in the disciplinary procedure. This means that a student, at a minimum, has the right to notice of the charge(s) made against him/her, a summary of the evidence supporting the charge(s), and an opportunity to present his/her case, including the opportunity to be heard.

 
 

Procedural due process shall be provided before any student is suspended or expelled from school. Please refer to AG 5610 for specific procedures that are required prior to the suspension or expulsion of students.

 
 

B.

Search and Seizure

 
 

Within certain limits, all students have a constitutional right to be free from unreasonable search and seizure, both of their person and property. In order for a search to be reasonable, it must be reasonable both at its inception and in its scope. Generally, schools must have a "reasonable suspicion" that a student may be in possession of illegal contraband, whether drugs, weapons, stolen property, and the like before it can begin a search of a studentís property, such as a backpack. This could be based on observations by a teacher or information provided by a student who witnessed the contraband being hidden. School officials cannot initiate a search to find "reasonable suspicion." It must be present before the search begins. For example, it may be reasonable to seize a cell phone if students are not permitted to carry them to class. But it may not be reasonable to look through the text messages sent to the student.

 
 

Likewise, the extent of a search must be reasonable in its scope. A search cannot go beyond what is reasonable. For example, conducting a strip search of a student generally is considered to be unreasonable in terms of maintaining order in the schools. It exceeds what is required for school officials to fulfill their responsibility of maintaining order. It may be reasonable to search a studentís coat or backpack but not his /her car.

Because school officials are not expected to be constitutional law scholars, any time a school official is uncertain about the legality of a search or seizure, s/he should seek the advice of the Corporation's legal counsel before proceeding.

Approved 8/4/15

© Neola 2015