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Schools change policies, table others
Mar 06, 2013 3:50 pm
The Wilson County Board of Education approved a number of changes to its policies that will affect students, teachers, administrators and even bus drivers in the upcoming school year.
In the board’s bus conduct policy, language was added regarding expectations of bus drivers to maintain order while on the bus of all passengers, including teachers, parents and coaches. The policy said, “teachers, parents and coaches are expected to take direction from the bus driver while on board the school bus. While on field trips, teachers and coaches are expected to assist the bus driver in maintaining order of students for their safety.”
The bus conduct policy was also amended to include due process for students in an effort to obtain both views on a bus infraction.
The policy now includes disciplinary procedures for bus drivers that doesn’t allow them to “put a child off the bus for disciplinary purposes at any point to and from school.” The bus driver is required to fill out a discipline form and turn it in to the principal, and the principal or assistant principal will assign punishment.
Students won’t be allowed to get off a school bus until they reach their destination, except in cases of emergency or when students have notes signed by parents and the principal.
In the use of video cameras on buses, only authorized transportation representatives and school administrators will be allowed to view footage to maintain student privacy rights.
In the use of personal communication devices in school policy, tablets – such as iPads – were added to the list of unacceptable items to be displayed or used during school hours.
The suspension/expulsion/placement policy was amended to include verbally assaulting a school bus driver or other school personnel as a reason for suspension or expulsion.
In the student wellness on physical activity and nutrition policy, a change was made to ensure “all” of the served grains are whole grain.
In the in-service and staff development opportunities policy for teachers, power was given to the director of schools to appoint all 13 members of the professional employees board.
The board deleted a requirement all members of the sick leave bank be submitted no later than Nov. 15 each year in the sick leave bank policy.
In the staff rights and responsibilities policy regarding discipline, time periods were deleted regarding how long discipline records would remain in personnel files, making them permanent.
The board also deferred vote on final approval on changes to a board policy concerning the naming of facilities. According to proposed changes in the policy, much of the intent appears to limit the naming of buildings, stadiums, gyms, field, etc. after someone still living.
The proposed changes would delete language that would allow the board to name facilities after “a living person, provided he or she has made an outstanding contribution to that school.”
Board member Bill Robinson made the motion to table vote on the proposed policy change until a work session could be held. Board member Ron Britt seconded the motion, adding no facility could be named until the work session. The measure passed unanimously.