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Hamilton – Wenham

Regional
High School
Student and Parent Handbook

Hamilton - Wenham Regional High


School
775 Bay Road
Hamilton, MA 01982
(978) 468 0400
Principal: Matthew Fox
Associate Principal: Philip Conrad
Guidance Director: Frank Sullivan
Athletic Director: Donald Doucette

Main Office: (978) 468 0400


Guidance Office: (978) 468 0480
Athletic Department: (978) 468 0485
HAMILTON-WENHAM REGIONAL SCHOOL DISTRICT
STUDENT HANDBOOK
2009 - 2010

TABLE OF CONTENTS
PRINCIPAL’S WELCOME ………………………………...………
5
Mission Statement and List of Student Expectations for Learning.........6
2009 - 2010 SCHOOL CALENDAR......................................................7
STUDENT SERVICES...........................................................................8
Guidance and Counseling Department...............................................8
Transcripts...........................................................................................9
PSAT/SAT Testing.............................................................................9
Student Records................................................................................10
Student Assistance Team..................................................................10
Special Education and Section 504 Referrals ..................................11
Health Services (978) 468-0409.......................................................11
Library Media Center........................................................................12
STUDENT ACADEMIC EXPECTATIONS.......................................14
Graduation Requirements.................................................................14
Promotion Requirements...................................................................15
Academic Levels...............................................................................15
Grading System.................................................................................16
Final Exams.......................................................................................17
Portfolio............................................................................................17
Progress Reports...............................................................................18
Summer Make-Up Deadline.............................................................18
Summer School.................................................................................18
Program Changes..............................................................................19
Senior Graduation Obligations..........................................................20
Valedictorian/Salutatorian Requirement...........................................21
Student Transfers..............................................................................21
..........................................................................................................22
Graduation Honors............................................................................22
Academic Achievement Roll............................................................22
Homework Policy.............................................................................23
SCHOOL POLICIES/PROCEDURES.................................................24
Announcements.................................................................................24

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Assemblies........................................................................................25
Athletic and Activity Fee Schedule...................................................25
Automobile Registration and Parking...............................................25
Connect-Ed Messages.......................................................................26
The Eighteen Year Old Student........................................................26
Field Trips.........................................................................................27
Fund Raising Policy .........................................................................27
Lockers..............................................................................................27
Lunch Program and Cafeteria Services.............................................28
Lost and Found..................................................................................28
Message Board..................................................................................28
Official Publications.........................................................................29
Posters...............................................................................................29
School Cancellations.........................................................................29
Telephone..........................................................................................29
Visitors..............................................................................................29
Withdrawal from High School..........................................................30
Work Permits/Student Employment.................................................30
SCHOOL ATTENDANCE POLICY...................................................30
Statement of Purpose........................................................................30
Attendance Procedures......................................................................31
Attendance Policy.............................................................................33
Attendance Policy Appeals...............................................................35
Policy on Extended Absences from School Because of Illness,
Disease, or Special Treatment...........................................................36
Truancy.............................................................................................36
Tardiness To School..........................................................................38
Dismissals.........................................................................................39
College Visits ...................................................................................39
Non-School Trips..............................................................................39
STUDENT CONDUCT AND DISCIPLINARY REGULATIONS.....41
Expectations, Rules, and Regulations for Student Discipline...........41
General Rules for Student Conduct..................................................41
Directed Study Hall Rules.................................................................42
Student Conduct and Disciplinary Policies.......................................42
Abusive Language .......................................................................42
Academic Honesty........................................................................42
Alcohol and Other Drug Use, Possession, and Distribution.........45

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Athletics: MIAA Drug and Alcohol Policy.................................49
Assault on a Faculty or Staff Member..........................................51
Bicycles, Unicycles, Skateboards, Scooter, Wheeled Sneakers, and
Other Transportation Devices.......................................................51
Bullying.........................................................................................51
Bus Conduct..................................................................................51
Cafeteria and Lunch Decorum......................................................53
Cell Phones/Beepers/Electronic Equipment.................................53
Cigarettes/Tobacco Products.........................................................53
Dance Rules and Policies..............................................................54
Dress Code....................................................................................56
Fighting/Physical Intimidation......................................................57
Fireworks......................................................................................57
Gambling.......................................................................................57
Gymnasium, Weight Room, and Locker Room Areas.................58
Harassment....................................................................................58
Hazing...........................................................................................58
Insubordination.............................................................................58
Internet and E-Mail Privileges......................................................59
Leaving the Building without Permission.....................................59
Musical Instruments......................................................................59
Pass Privileges...............................................................................60
Theft ............................................................................................60
Throwing Food or Objects............................................................60
Truancy.........................................................................................60
Vandalism.....................................................................................60
Weapons........................................................................................61
Disciplinary Procedures....................................................................61
Administrative Detention..............................................................61
Suspension Policy and Procedures................................................61
Expulsion Procedures....................................................................64
APPENDIX A: MASSACHUSETTS GENERAL LAWS CHAPTER
269 CRIMES AGAINST PUBLIC PEACE.........................................67
APPENDIX B: HARASSMENT PREVENTION AND RESPONSE. 70
APPENDIX C: TECHNOLOGYACCEPTABLE USE POLICY........81
APPENDIX D: Discipline Policy and Procedures for Students with
Disabilities............................................................................................88
General Guidelines for Disciplining Students with Disabilities...89
Manifestation Determinations...........................................................90

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Other Considerations Regarding Discipline.................................93
Hamilton-Wenham Regional High School
775 Bay Road
South Hamilton, MA 01982
(978) 468-0400
Principal’s Message

To the student:

Welcome to Hamilton Wenham Regional High School. This handbook


is designed to provide you with the information you will need to be
successful here at the Regional. Your success will depend upon the
degree of your academic and social involvement. We encourage you
to be an active learner as well as an active member of the school
community. The entire staff at HWRHS is dedicated to assist you in
any and every way that is necessary to ensure your years here are
productive and prosperous. It is our goal to provide you with the
necessary knowledge and skills that will allow you to successfully
proceed to the future endeavor of your choice. It is our hope that you
will invest in your education and development by being responsible
school citizens, treating people with dignity and respect, and taking
great pride in your school.

To the parent/guardian:

A successful school experience is truly a collaborative effort. It is our


responsibility to provide the best possible educational experience we
can for the students of HWRHS. As partners, we must work together
to support and encourage our students. Strong and effective
communication is the essential element to achieve this goal. Please feel
free to contact us with your ideas, concerns and support. I encourage
your assistance in making HWRHS a well-organized, safe and
comfortable learning environment.

Have a great year!

Matthew J. Fox
Principal
PRINCIPAL’S WELCOME

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MISSION STATEMENT AND LIST OF STUDENT
EXPECTATIONS FOR LEARNING

The Hamilton-Wenham Regional School community


strives to create a passion for learning
in a reflective environment
that promotes respect, individuality, and quality achievement.

A Passion for Learning

By working to reach their greatest potential, Hamilton-Wenham


students will LEARN to:
Live as Lifelong Learners
• locate and utilize opportunities for learning beyond the
school walls
• make informed decisions
• set and pursue goals
• prepare for future learning and/or career paths
Express Themselves Effectively
• speak and write proficiently and effectively
• express ideas creatively using a variety of formats
Acquire Essential Knowledge and Skills
• be critical and creative researchers, thinkers, and
solution-makers
• access, comprehend, and evaluate information from a
variety of sources and subjects
• analyze, interpret, and deliver information using a
variety of media
Respect Themselves and Others
• assume responsibility for making healthy choices
• demonstrate awareness and respect for others in a
diverse world
• exhibit honesty, integrity, and personal responsibility
Navigate within a Variety of Communities
• work with others to accomplish a common goal
• contribute actively to the commonwealth of the
community
• develop an understanding of the rights and
responsibilities of living in a democracy
• participate as active citizens

Adopted by Unanimous Vote of Faculty – February 2, 2005


Adopted by Unanimous Vote of School Council – February 8,
2005

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Adopted by Unanimous Vote of School Committee – March 31,
2005
HAMILTON-WENHAM REGIONAL HIGH SCHOOL
2009 - 2010 SCHOOL CALENDAR

August 2009 31 Monday Opening Day for Teachers

September 1 Tuesday Teacher Workshop & Orientation Gr. 6 & 9


ONLY

2 Wednesday Opening Day for all Students

4 Friday NO SCHOOL

7 Monday LABOR DAY — NO SCHOOL

October 12 Monday COLUMBUS DAY — NO SCHOOL

November 3 Friday Teacher Workshop Day — NO SCHOOL

6 Tuesday First Quarter Ends

11 Tuesday Veterans’ Day Observance — NO SCHOOL

25 Wednesday THANKSGIVING RECESS — EARLY RELEASE

30 Monday School Reopens

December 23 Friday WINTER HOLIDAY RECESS — EARLY RELEASE

January 2010 4 Monday Schools Reopen—For all Students

18 Monday MARTIN LUTHER KING DAY — NO SCHOOL

19 Tuesday - MID TERM EXAMS - Abbreviated Days


22 Friday Second Quarter Ends

25 Monday Start of Semester TWO

February 15 Monday PRESIDENTS DAY— Mid Winter Vacation


Begins

22 Monday School Reopens

April 2 Friday Third Quarter Ends

19 Monday PATRIOTS DAY— SPRING VACATION BEGINS

26 Monday School Reopens

May 13 Thursday Teacher Workshop Day — NO SCHOOL

31 Monday MEMORIAL DAY — NO SCHOOL

June 13 Sunday GRADUATION

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24 Friday LAST DAY FOR STUDENTS **
If all Snow Days are used.

STUDENT SERVICES

Guidance and Counseling Department


The Guidance Department at Hamilton-Wenham
Regional High School supports the high school’s mission
statement. Corresponding student expectations for
learning drive the mission of the department. In
particular, the counselors work closely with students
over a four-year period of time assisting students to:
• Locate and utilize opportunities for learning
beyond the school walls
• Make informed decisions
• Set and pursue personal goals
• Prepare for future learning and/or career
paths

The student-counselor relationship also reinforces the


need for each student to:
• Assume responsibility for making healthy
choices
• Demonstrate awareness and respect for
others in a diverse world
• Exhibit honesty, integrity, and personal
responsibility

The Guidance Department, which is located adjacent to


the Main Administrative Offices, is home to four
guidance counselors and two secretaries. It houses
post-secondary reference material including college
catalogues, view books, college profiles, applications,
videotapes and scholarship information. Two computers
are available for student use on an individual as-needed
basis. The college & career planning software,
Naviance, can be accessed through these and other
school-based computers, as well as from the home-
based computers of all students and their parents.

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Each student is assigned to a counselor on an
alphabetical basis. Generally, students will remain with
the same counselor throughout their high school years.
The counselor’s primary responsibility is to work closely
with students and their parents in matters pertinent to
academic advising, post-secondary planning and
personal counseling. Students are encouraged to make
appointments with their counselor by visiting the
Guidance Office before, during, or after school, and
scheduling a time in the counselors’ appointment book
available with the guidance secretary.
Parents/guardians are encouraged to call and make an
appointment with their child’s guidance counselor if they
have a question or concern. The guidance department
website, www.hwschools.net, also contains the e-mail
addresses of all counselors as another option available
to parents. Guidance counselors meet with students on
an individual and group basis throughout the year.

Transcripts
Students must request transcripts either in writing or in
person 10 days prior to issuance. The cost for mailing a
senior's official transcript, temporary record, and
supporting materials is $4.00 for each request. This fee
also covers the automatic mailing of senior first
semester grades to all colleges and the final transcript to
the college the student indicates that he/she is planning
to attend. Transcripts of alumni are mailed to
institutions free of charge.

PSAT/SAT Testing
PSAT/SAT/SAT SUBJECT TESTS DATES.
SAT & SAT SUBJECT TESTS October 10, 2009
PSAT October 17, 2009
SAT & SAT SUBJECT TESTS November 7, 2009
SAT & SAT SUBJECT TESTS December 5, 2009
SAT & SAT SUBJECT TESTS January 23, 2010
SAT only March 13, 2010
SAT & SAT SUBJECT TESTS May 1, 2010
SAT & SAT SUBJECT TESTS June 5, 2010

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Bold dates indicate that the corresponding test is
administered at Hamilton-Wenham Regional High School
on these dates.

Student Records
There are two parts to a student's record. The Official
Transcript is the permanent record of the student, listing
name, address, course titles and grades. All other
information in the folder (test scores, extra curricular
activities, etc.) is part of the Temporary Record. The
transcript is kept for 60 years after the student leaves
the high school. The temporary record is given to
seniors when they graduate.

Any high school student or parent may request to see


the contents of the student folder. The Family
Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974
(Massachusetts Department of Education Student
Records Regulations, 603 CMR 23.07) provides that the
student or parent be allowed to review the folder as
soon as practicable and within ten days of the initial
request. The guidance counselor will review material in
the folder with the student or parent and answer any
questions.

Further information regarding student records, the


release of records to non-custodial parents, and the laws
governing recordkeeping in this state is available on the
Guidance Department website at: www.hwschools.net.

Student Assistance Team


The Student Assistance Team is convened on a regular
basis to develop strategies for addressing the needs of
students with academic difficulties. Students may be
referred by parents, teachers, counselors, or
administrators. Referral forms are available in the main
office and must be submitted to the assistant principal’s
mailbox in advance of a team meeting. Parents may
make referrals directly to the assistant principal or
student’s guidance counselor.

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Special Education and Section 504 Referrals
Special Education: If a student’s academic difficulties
indicate that he/she may have a learning disability and
require specialized instruction, a teacher, guidance
counselor, or parent may contact the special education
department. A referral is typically made after the
student’s teachers have implemented pre-referral
strategies as recommended by the Student Assistance
Team. Parent rights brochures are available from the
Special Education Department Chairperson.

Section 504: If a parent or teacher believes that a


student may require classroom accommodations, that
parent or teacher should contact the student’s guidance
counselor to discuss appropriate accommodations.
Information regarding parental rights under Section 504
is available from the assistant principal.

Health Services (978) 468-0409


The school nurse is available during the day for students
who have accidents or become ill and need medical
attention or medication or want to discuss physical or
mental health matters. Students must have a pass from
their classroom or study hall teacher. Students who do
not follow this procedure will be considered to have cut
the missed classes.

Medical-related reports i.e. physical exams, gym


excuses, immunizations, should be brought to the Health
Office. Your cooperation enables us to keep health
records up-to-date for referral during the year.

Screenings are done on students for vision and


hearing, height and weight, and for 9th grade, scoliosis,
in compliance with state law.

Emergency cards authorizing treatment in case of


injury, dispensing of medications, or other problems
needing medical attention must be signed and on file in

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the health office each year in order to provide these
services.

Medication: Students who need to take medication


during the school day are required to leave their
medication in the Health Office. Medication should not
be kept in lockers, gym bags, or pocketbooks. In
accordance with state regulations, all
medications, prescription and over the counter,
must be accompanied by a doctor’s order and
parent permission to be administered during
school hours. Narcotic medication will not be
administered in school. Asthma Medications and Epi-
pens are special circumstances. Please contact the
Health Office if you need inhalers or Epi-pens in school.
Forms may be downloaded from hwschools.net via the
health office link.

Sports physicals must be on file and current (within


1 year) for participation in any sports or practices.

Call the Health Office at 978-468-0409 for questions


regarding illnesses, medications, or physical or mental
health concerns.

Library Media Center


Students may use the library for research purposes
during study periods. Students must have a pass to use
the library prior to entering the library for their
study block. The student must get a pass from the
librarian before school, before the study hall, after
school or even the day before. The student must go to
study hall with the pass, have their teacher take
attendance and sign the pass, and then they may come
to the library.

Circulation of Material

Reference Books
Reference Books may not be taken from the library
except by a teacher for class use that day or by special
permission from the librarian.

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Books
Books except reserve and reference books may be
borrowed for a period of two weeks. A book may be
renewed for an additional two weeks if no one else has
requested it.

Newspapers and Periodicals


The daily newspapers and periodicals are to be used in
the library only. Periodicals are not to be used for
cutting purposes. Back issues of periodicals are stored
in the periodical room. The number of years of back
issues varies with each periodical.

General Information
There are no fines for overdue books. However, abuse
of borrowing privileges will result in curtailment of those
privileges.

Games, cards, puzzles, cellular telephones, iPods, MP3


players, and all other electronic devices are not to be
used in the library media center. Food and/or drinks are
not allowed.

Students may use the library for research purposes


during study periods. A pass from the library signed by
the study hall teacher will be required to enter.

ANY STUDENTS WHO ARE NOT PURSUING A SERIOUS


GOAL OR WHO ARE IN ANY WAY CREATING A
DISTURBANCE WILL BE ASKED TO LEAVE THE LIBRARY
AND RETURN TO STUDY HALL. Repeated disruptive
behavior will result in loss of library privileges.

Students will be required to pay the full cost of library


media material that is lost or permanently damaged due
to negligence. A lesser charge will be made when, in the
librarian's judgment, material is slightly damaged or
defaced due to negligence. If a book is permanently
lost, the student should promptly notify the librarian.

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Any student who fails to pay for lost or misplaced
materials may, after proper warning and notification, be
subject to disciplinary measures until restitution is made.

The library has a 3M book detection security system.


Any student caught removing library materials without
checking them out may have a parent contacted and be
subject to suspension since this action constitutes theft.

STUDENT ACADEMIC EXPECTATIONS

Graduation Requirements
All students are required to earn 24 credits in order to
graduate. A semester course receives .5 credits; a year-
long course receives 1 credit.

Distribution requirements:
• English 4 credits
• History 3 credits
• Science 3 credits
• Mathematics 3 credits
• Health Science 3.25 credits*
• Foreign Language 2
credits (required for English H or A1
students)
• Fine/Applied Arts .5 credits
Engineering Technology.5 credits
Additional semester of either .5 credits
* Class of 2010 is required to earn 3.25
Health Science Credits for all others it will
be 2.75
The Massachusetts Department of Education also
requires that all students pass both English, and Math
MCAS competency testing to be eligible for a high school
diploma. Beginning with the class of 2010, each student

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must complete a Regional Exit Portfolio as well as satisfy
the MCAS Science competency testing as a requirement
of graduation.
For the purpose of scheduling each student may
carry no more than one directed study per
semester

Promotion Requirements
1. In order to enter a sophomore homeroom, a
student must earn at least 5 credits during
his/her freshman year. Approved summer
school credits will be included in the 5 credit
minimum.

2. In order to enter a junior homeroom, a student


must earn a total of 10 credits during the
freshman and sophomore years. Approved
summer school credits will be included in the 10
credit minimum.
3. In order to enter a senior homeroom, a student
must earn a total of 17 credits. Approved
summer school credits will be included in the 17
credit minimum.

Academic Levels
Courses are taught at three different academic levels.
Students with similar abilities work together in courses
tailored to their particular strengths and needs.
Students may move up or down in learning levels
depending on their performance or desire to undertake a
more challenging academic program across all
disciplines.

• AP/Honors level courses are designed for


students with a strong fundamental knowledge of
the subject, outstanding critical thinking ability,
and independent study skills.
• Academic A1 level courses adhere to a standard
college preparatory curriculum. They are
designed for students capable of responsible,
independent study of advanced topics.

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• Academic A1 Skills level courses adhere to a
skills-based college preparatory curriculum with
accommodations designed to support individual
learning styles. These courses prepare students
for four-year colleges as well as two-year colleges
and technical training

Grading System
Letter grades are assigned to coursework on the
standard A through F basis. An “N” grade indicates
failure due to excessive absences. The credit from a
course receiving a final grade of “N” cannot be made-up
in summer school. An “I” indicates an incomplete grade.
An incomplete grade must meet with administrative
approval based on extenuating medical or personal
circumstances. All incomplete work must be completed
within ten days of the close of the marking period, or the
student will receive a failing grade. A Pass/Fail grading
option may be considered with prior approval of the
administration. A “W” indicates withdrawal from a
course.
• Report cards are distributed to students four
times per year, approximately two weeks after
the close of each marking period.
• Credits are awarded at the conclusion of each
semester’s work. The grade in any semester
DOES NOT affect the following or preceding
semester grade.
• The final semester grade is an average of the
preceding marking period grades and the final
exam.

Our grading guidelines are as follows:


A 94-100 A- 90-93
B+ 87-89 B 83-86 B- 80-82
C+ 77-79 C 73-76 C- 70-72
D+ 67-69 D 63-66 D- 60-62

Grade point average based upon a weighted 4.0 scale


will be calculated at the end of each academic year and
at the conclusion of the first semester of the senior year.
All courses factor toward the calculation of GPA except:

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Health Science, diversified learning programs,
independent study courses and all courses not taken at
Hamilton-Wenham Regional High School.

GRADE AP/H A1 A1S


A 4.5 4.2 4.0
A- 4.2 3.9 3.7
B+ 3.8 3.5 3.3
B 3.5 3.2 3.0
B- 3.2 2.9 2.7
C+ 2.8 2.5 2.3
C 2.5 2.2 2.0
C- 2.2 1.9 1.7
D+ 1.8 1.5 1.3
D 1.5 1.2 1.0
D- 1.2 .9 .7
F 0 0 0
Rank-in-class is not determined or reported to colleges.
Colleges will receive a graph outlining the number of
students who fall within a grade category.

Final Exams
Final exams are given by all departments (except
physical education) twice a year. Exams will be
weighted at a maximum of 20% of the final grade.
Students who leave school early in June for trips and
other commitments will be required to make up final
exams after they return. The final grades will be
available no later than the beginning of the next school
year.

Portfolio
Beginning with the class of 2010, each student must
complete a Regional Exit Portfolio as a requirement of
graduation. The Portfolio will demonstrate academic
progress, and personal growth over time. It is meant to
empower students and give them an opportunity to
reflect upon their learning. The Portfolio is not a project
but an ongoing process of collection, selection, and
reflection. Portfolios will also be used to measure

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whether students have attained the expectations for
student learning outlined in the school’s Mission
Statement.

Progress Reports
Warnings/progress reports are issued at mid-term or
whenever a teacher is concerned about a student’s
performance, whether the student is failing, in danger of
failing, not completing homework or not participating at
an appropriate level in the class. The warning may be
communicated by telephone or letter. If a warning letter
is sent to parents, a copy will be forwarded to the
Guidance Office. With only four marking periods, it is
extremely important that parents and students keep in
touch with teachers about student performance. Parents
are encouraged to call the school at (978) 468 5300 at
any time to inquire about their child's performance.

Summer Make-Up Deadline


Any incomplete received for the second semester final
grade must be made up at a pre-determined time. In no
case will an incomplete make-up be allowed after the
second full week of school in September. It is the
responsibility of the student and/or parent to contact the
school as soon as possible to arrange for make-ups.
Failure to adhere to the above guidelines will result in a
grade of zero for all incomplete work.

Summer School
Summer school does not replicate regular year-long
classroom instruction. HWRHS does not offer summer
school. Credits from surrounding high school summer
schools and colleges can be applied towards course
credits lost due to prior failure. In some case, with prior
administrative approval, summer credits earned from
distance learning institutions can be applied toward
credits lost by prior failure. Students are encouraged to
speak with their guidance counselor for further
information. The credit from a course receiving a final
grade of “N” cannot be made-up in summer school.

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Program Changes
The program selected by the student in the spring each
year represents his/her final selection of courses for the
following academic year. After the schedule has been
constructed, we must limit changes to those necessary
due to course failures, scheduling conflicts, or the
cancellation of courses due to insufficient enrollment or
lack of faculty to teach the courses. Additionally,
schedules will be adjusted following verification of
credits earned from successful summer school study. If
a scheduling error has been made, adjustments will be
made as soon as possible in individual programs.

Students who desire to change course levels should


discuss this with their teacher and parents. Changes in
levels of courses must be jointly recommended by
teacher, student, and parents with approval from the
Department Chair.

Program Change Procedures


1. The student should bring in a note from one of
his/her parents or guardians requesting the
change and stating the reason for the request.

2. Student must show current teacher and counselor


a note indicating parental approval for requested
change. Counselor will verify that student has
obtained all necessary teacher signatures and
upon completion counselor will give add/drop
cards to appropriate teachers.

Deadlines for Program Change Procedures


1. Course changes which meet the above criteria
may only be made in the first two weeks of the
semester or year in which the course began. No
indication of the course will appear on the
transcript. After these first two weeks, a W will
appear on the transcript.

2. Students who are performing poorly in a yearlong


course may be allowed to drop the course at the

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end of first semester. The student will receive a
W grade for second semester. All changes are
dependent on availability of alternate course
selections. Course changes must be finalized
within the first two weeks of the semester.
Students are not allowed to drop a course in
order to gain an additional directed study.

Senior Graduation Obligations


Each senior must participate in all scheduled graduation
rehearsals and attend the Awards Assembly, Candlelight,
and Graduation. Failure to attend any of the rehearsals
and activities without prior permission from the principal
will result in the student not being allowed to participate
in subsequent activities. Permission is granted only for
extreme emergencies (e.g., illness.) Work, routine
doctor's appointments, etc. are not acceptable excuses.
Seniors are still officially in attendance and as such are
required to attend all scheduled activities. The principal
must be notified as soon as possible of any potential
attendance problems.

Any senior who cannot meet all academic graduation


requirements or financial obligations will not be allowed
to participate in Senior Week activities and Graduation,
and must resolve the requirements and/or financial
obligations before receiving a diploma.

Any student who attends the Senior Prom, a rehearsal,


or any other Senior Week activity "under the influence,"
or brings liquor or drugs to activities will be excluded
from the activity. Parents will be notified, the normal
disciplinary routine will be followed, and diplomas will be
withheld for presentation at a later date. The student
will not be permitted to participate in any further
graduation ceremonies.

Students are required to be at the


Candlelight/Graduation site with caps and gowns one
hour in advance of the scheduled starting time. Proper
dress is required for Senior Week ceremonies.

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Girls should wear light-colored dresses under their white
robes with (light-colored) shoes or sandals. Boys should
wear white shirts, ties, and slacks (not jeans) under their
robes and socks and shoes (not sneakers). If students
are unable to meet these requests, they must see the
principal or graduation advisor.

Valedictorian/Salutatorian Requirement
In order for a graduating senior to be considered for
valedictorian or salutatorian status, the student must be
enrolled on a full-time basis for their junior and senior
years at Hamilton-Wenham Regional High School. These
students will be determined at the conclusion of the first
semester of senior year.

Early Graduation
Hamilton-Wenham Regional High School does not
encourage students to graduate early because we
believe that most students benefit from four full years of
high school. There are cases, nevertheless, when early
graduation is an appropriate option. Parent permission
and permission from the administration prior to the end
of the student’s sophomore year are required. A letter
from the student’s parent must initiate the process. The
letter should be addressed to the principal. Upon receipt
of the request the principal will consult with the
student’s teachers, guidance counselor, and special
education staff, if appropriate, and meet with the
student and parents to determine a course of action.

Student Transfers
In order to receive a Hamilton-Wenham diploma, a student who
transfers to the high school must meet the following requirements:

1. Satisfy all graduation course requirements for


his/her class (please see graduation requirements
section for specific information)

2. Have earned an equivalent of at least 24 credits

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3. Have earned an equivalent of 5 credits as a
senior at Hamilton-Wenham with a minimum of 3
credits in the following areas: English, History,
Math, Science, and/or Foreign Language

4. Demonstrate the successful attainment of student


expectations for learning

5. Satisfy MCAS testing competencies

Any requests for exceptions to this policy due to


extenuating circumstances must be reviewed by the
principal.

Graduation Honors
At graduation, seniors in the top 10% of their class will
be considered "honors" students. High Honors will be
determined by the principal at mid-year of senior year.

Academic Achievement Roll


The academic achievement roll honors students who
achieve success academically and fosters high academic
standards. Students at all levels - honors, academic,
and skills - can achieve academic success and the
acclaim that accompanies it. This process is not to be
confused with National Honor Society. The Academic
Achievement Roll will be organized as follows:

1. The Academic Achievement Roll will be published


at the end of each semester

2. This Roll will have two categories of recognition,


labeled Highest Achievement and High
Achievement

3. All courses will be weighted equally. Therefore,


all grades received at all levels (Honors,
Academic 1, and Academic Skills) are to be
considered of equal value

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4. Any grade of C will automatically exclude a
student from the Academic Achievement Roll

5. The student must be enrolled in six courses at all


times

6. At the end of each semester, the criteria for


making Highest Achievement will be:

a. At least five "A's" (any A) with no grade


lower than B-
b. The Health Science grade cannot count as
one of the "A's"; however, it cannot be lower
than B-

7. At the end of each semester, the criteria for


making High Achievement will be:

a. No more than 2 B- grades with the rest B or


better.

8. All courses appearing on a student's transcript


will be counted in determining the number of
"A's" and "B's" earned

9. Courses taken Pass - Fail will not count toward


the six courses or toward a letter grade

Homework Policy
Hamilton-Wenham Regional High School requires that
students at all grades and levels take homework
seriously and expects that students will bring work home
as an extension of the classroom experience and
ongoing process of learning. Discovery and practice
form the basis of learning both in and beyond the
classroom. Students need to understand that homework
is not an end in itself but rather a way of preparing them
to continue their own learning in life. As students
progress through four years at the high school, they
must assume increasing responsibility for their own
learning.

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Guidelines for Homework:
• Normally homework will be assigned regularly and
frequently if not daily
• Students should expect an average of 30-45 minutes
of homework per subject every night
• Homework should be graded and counted as a
significant part of the term average
• Teachers will explain to students the purpose and
rationale for the assignment, including its connection
to class work, when the assignment is given
• Homework can take a variety of forms, including long
and short term assignments, reviewing, reading,
studying, projects and research
• At the high school level, the parents' role in
homework is primarily supervisory. Although a
parent may need to help a student complete an
assignment occasionally, the parents' most
important function will be to make sure the student
has the time and space necessary for serious study.
In addition, parents can help their children by
checking that assignments are being completed. The
school encourages parents to check their child's
assignment book regularly to be sure that homework
is being completed.

SCHOOL POLICIES/PROCEDURES

Announcements
Daily announcements are made each morning at 7:45
a.m. following the Pledge of Allegiance. In order to avoid
disrupting classes with P.A. announcements during the
school day, the majority of school announcements will
be published in the Faculty Bulletin or posted outside the
main office. With faculty approval, students may submit
written announcements to be announced over the Public
Address system. Except in an emergency, the P.A. will
only be used at the beginning and/or end of the school
day.

24
Assemblies
The school's assembly program is designed to provide a
variety of experiences for students. Some assemblies
are intended to share information; some are principally
entertaining; some are organized to honor student
achievement; some are showcases for student
performance; some celebrate certain traditions.
Whatever the assembly's purpose, we expect that
students will behave politely, demonstrating that they
have learned how to be an appropriate and courteous
audience.

On days when there are assemblies we may change the


schedule. Those changes will be announced through the
Student Bulletin. Students who wish to use school rooms
or spaces for meetings or assemblies must complete a
Building Use form.

Athletic and Activity Fee Schedule


Students are required to pay a fee for participation in
high school athletics and/or activities. Fees vary by
activity and athletic team. An updated listing of fees is
available on the school web site at www.hwschools.net.

No student may participate in an athletic or extra-


curricular activity if he/she has not paid the activity fee.
Any student who is unable to pay the fee may see the
principal.

Automobile Registration and Parking


Due to limited parking spaces, student parking will be
restricted to seniors and juniors as determined by
lottery. In order to participate in the parking lottery,
each student must register his/her vehicle with the
assistant principal by providing a copy of his/her license
and registration, completing and signing the parking
contract, and paying a fee of $200.00 per school year.
Seniors will receive priority in the parking lottery.
Juniors who do not receive an assigned space will be
placed on a waiting list.

25
Students will comply with all rules and regulations
regarding the use of motorized vehicles as outlined in
the parking contract. Violations of motor vehicle rules
will result in revocation of driving privilege as well as
possible disciplinary action.
Driving on school grounds is a privilege not a right, and
as such may be revoked for cause, including, but not
limited to, misuse of motor vehicle, using vehicle to
leave school property without permission, speeding,
and/or not stopping when directed. If a student parks
on school grounds without an assigned space, his/her car
may be ticketed or towed. A student who brings a car to
school after revocation of parking privileges will have the
car towed at his/her own expense.

Cars are strictly off limits to all students during the


school day. No student will be allowed in the parking lot
without permission from the office. Violation of this rule
will result in disciplinary consequences. Vehicles on
school grounds are subject to search for banned material
or substances when reasonable suspicion exists that
they may present.

Any student who arrives late to school ten or more


times during the school year will lose his/her
parking privileges for the remainder of the school
year and forfeit his/her parking fee.
Connect-Ed Messages
At times, students and parents will receive pre-recorded
messages at home via the Connect-Ed phone system.
The system may be used to deliver urgent messages
regarding emergencies or school cancellations as well as
reminders about important events.

The Eighteen Year Old Student


Eighteen year olds must obey all school rules. Students
who have reached the age of 18 may exercise adult
rights and responsibilities. However, the school reserves
the right to keep parents of 18 year olds informed of a
student's progress and behavior in the same way that all
parents are kept informed about their children's school
behavior and achievement. With written parent

26
approval, students who wish to exercise adult
responsibilities will be allowed to sign a waiver in the
office.

Field Trips
All students must submit a completed permission form,
including all required signatures, five school days prior
to participating in the activity.

Fund Raising Policy


Student Government grants and monitors school
organizations' fund raising privileges. Any group wishing
to hold an activity in which a fee is paid for services
rendered, for entertainment provided, or for goods
received must apply through the Student Government
Organization.

Lockers
A locker is assigned to each student during the
homeroom period on the first day of school each year.
The locker is school property. Keep it neat; no writing or
decals, please. Keep your valuables locked or in your
possession to help prevent material from being taken.
During Health Science class, valuables should be left
with the instructor or locked in your locker. Lockers
should be emptied at the end of the school year as they
are retightened and cleaned every summer. Materials
left in the locker will be disposed of at the end of the
year.

Periodically the lockers are inspected for school


materials. Students' lockers are public property and are
therefore subject to search by school officials. Certain
items may not be stored in lockers or on persons, for
example, weapons, illegal drugs, alcoholic beverages,
stolen property, items against school policy, etc. A
search warrant is not required by the school
administration, as determined by the New Jersey vs.
T.L.O. case of 1985. The custodian has all combinations
and should be consulted if you have problems with your

27
locker. The school is not responsible for items taken
from lockers.

Lunch Program and Cafeteria Services


All students will remain in the cafeteria or courtyard
(weather permitting) during the lunch period. Because
half of the school will be in classes and half at lunch, it is
imperative that no students be in the academic corridors
during the assigned lunch block. Free and reduced
lunch applications are available from the Hamilton-
Wenham Food Service Department.

During lunch period, at least two stations will serve food,


one offering the traditional "hot lunch" and the other
primarily "a la carte". The cafeteria also provides
breakfast and snacks during the following hours:
Breakfast Bar: 7:15 – 7:40 a.m. and 8:50-9:20
a.m.
Snack Bar: 2:20 - 2:30 p.m.
The afternoon snack bar is designed for high school
students involved in sports or other extra-curricular
activities.

Lost and Found


During the school year, personal items may be lost or
misplaced by students. The school collects these items
and stores them in one of the custodial closets.
Occasionally items are turned in to the main office. If
you have lost an item, check in the front office and with
the custodian on duty. In addition, at the end of each
year all lockers are completely cleaned and materials
not claimed are disposed of in July.

Message Board
Parent messages for students will be posted on the
message board located outside the main office.
Students should check the board regularly for messages.
If the school receives a parent request before 10:30
a.m., the electronic message board in the cafeteria will
be used to notify the student to report to the office for

28
his/her message. Students in class will not be
interrupted unless an emergency arises.

Official Publications
A Faculty Handbook is published for use by teachers in
conjunction with the Student and Parent Handbook.

Syllabus, the high school newsletter, is published on the


school web site. Students and parents are encouraged
to read the Syllabus to keep up with the latest
information. If a hard copy is needed, parents may
contact the main office.
A Course Catalogue is distributed each March to help
students make educational program plans.

Posters
All flyers, bills or posters must be approved by the
assistant principal prior to being posted.

School Cancellations
Due to weather or unusual circumstances, the opening
of school may be delayed or school may be cancelled for
the day. Information regarding school cancellations will
be made available to families through Connect-Ed phone
messages and on local radio and television newscasts.
The school year will be extended by one day for each full
day cancellation.

Telephone
There is a telephone in the front office for student use.
Using the telephone is not an excuse for tardiness to
school or class. Students will not be called to the office
except for emergency calls. Students should notify
employers and parents that only emergency calls should
be transmitted through the office. The use of cellular
telephones is strictly prohibited.

Visitors
All visitors to the school are required to check in at the
front office and obtain a visitor's pass. Arrangements

29
must be made in advance. The school does not permit
visitors whose primary purpose for visiting is social.
Persons in the school without authorization will be asked
to leave immediately and will be subject to arrest and
removal by the police.

Withdrawal from High School


Students are required by law to be in school until the
age of 16. Between the ages of 16-18, students may
withdraw from school only with parental permission. To
initiate a withdrawal, students should meet with a
guidance counselor who will explain the withdrawal
procedure.

Work Permits/Student Employment


Work permits and cards may be obtained from, and
returned to, the Superintendent's Office. A work permit
is required prior to employment for students 16-18 years
old. Students 14-16 years old must also ask the
potential employer to fill out a Promise of Employment
card. A physical is required. Permit information is also
available at www.mass.gov/dos/youth/.

SCHOOL ATTENDANCE POLICY

Statement of Purpose
Students are expected to attend class every day that
school is in session. According to Chapter 76, Section 1,
of Massachusetts General Law, a student may only be
absent from school due to physical illness, mental
illness, disability-related reasons, or religious
observance. Regular and punctual school attendance
provides an essential foundation for educational
progress and assists students in developing habits
necessary for success in career and professional life.
Students who are absent miss critical classroom
instruction, participation in discussions with teachers
and peers, and opportunities for clarification of
assignments. Extended absences impair academic
progress and undermine student grades. The goal of the

30
Attendance Policy is to ensure that each student keeps
his/her absences to a minimum so that he/she can take
full advantage of the educational program and actively
participate in the school community.

Attendance Procedures
If a student is going to be absent from school, parents
must call the school nurse at (978) 468-0409 by 8:00
a.m. When the student returns to school, he/she must
bring a note from a parent or guardian to the front office
between 7:30 and 7:40 a.m. The note must state the
date of absence and reason for the absence, upon
receipt of a note, the student will be granted a make-up
authorization slip. Students who fail to provide a parent
note will not be allowed to make-up missed work.
Students who miss school without parent permission are
considered truant. For this reason, parents must provide
a note for all absences from school or class, regardless
of circumstances.

1. Documented Absences: include emergency


visits to a doctor, dentist, or other medical
professional, court appointment, surgery,
religious observance, funeral, school-sponsored
field trip, college visit, discipline-related
suspension. Juniors and seniors may be excused
from school for a maximum of three (3) pre-
approved college visits per year. If proper
documentation is provided, the absences listed
above will not be counted in absence totals.
Every effort should be made to schedule routine
appointments after school hours.

2. Absent With a Note: indicates a parent note


has been presented to the school. Students who
are absent from school for ANY reason must
provide a parent note to the school upon return.
The note must state the date of absence, the
reason for the absence, and must be signed by a
parent. Upon receipt of a note, the student will
be granted a make-up authorization slip. Please
note that absences with a note will count toward
attendance maximums.

31
3. Absent Without a Note: indicates that a
student has missed school without parent
permission and will be assigned an Administrative
Detention for each day until a note is received.
Students arriving at school without a note will
NOT be allowed to make up the work missed until
a note is provided or until the absence is
considered truancy. An absence without a note
will be considered truancy if no note is provided
within three days of return. Please note that
absences without a note will count toward
attendance maximums. Students must provide a
note upon their return to school and no later than
the second day back to school.

4. Religious Observances: Students will be


marked as “present” on the days they observe
their religious holidays. Students must provide a
letter from their parent/guardian informing the
principal of the student’s absence prior to a
religious observance.

5. Non-School Trips: Any student who will be


absent due to a non-school trip must provide the
office with a parent note detailing the reasons for
the absence at least three days prior to
departure. Upon receiving the note, the student
will be provided with a non-school trip form. The
student must notify all teachers and obtain their
signatures at least three (3) days prior to
departure. A student who fails to follow these
procedures will not be eligible for a make-up
authorization slip.

6. No credit for make-up work will be granted by


classroom teachers until the student presents a
make-up authorization slip from the front office.
It is the student’s responsibility to see
his/her teachers the day he/she returns to
school, regardless of whether class meets
that day. A student is allowed one more school
day than the total number of days absent to

32
make up work (e.g. two (2) days absent equals
three (3) days make-up, three (3) days absent
equals four (4) days make-up). This deadline is
based on school days rather than class
meetings. A student who fails to present a
make-up slip and/or make up work within two
days of his/her return will receive zeros in all
work missed due to the absence. An extension of
the make-up time may be granted by the
assistant principal under extenuating
circumstances.

7. Any student who is late to school and does not


report to the office immediately upon arrival will
be marked tardy and receive a grade reduction
for classes not attended. Any student who
arrives after 8:15am without parental permission
will be considered truant.

8. A student who misses a test or quiz due to a


tardy is required to make-up the assessment that
day. Failure to do so will result in a zero grade on
the assessment.

9. Any student who is absent five (5) or more


consecutive school days due to illness will be
required to present a doctor's note documenting
the illness before make-up authorization is
granted.

10. Students returning from hospitalization of any


length must attend a re-entry meeting with the
assistant principal, guidance counselor, and
school nurse prior to returning to school. The
goal of this meeting will be to develop a plan for
supporting the student's academic and social-
emotional transition. Parents will be asked to
provide a Discharge Summary from the hospital
with recommendations for re-entry.

Attendance Policy
In order to ensure that each student obtains the
maximum benefit from each of his/her classes, students

33
are only eligible to receive credit for classes attended on
a regular basis. Students who are absent due to
extended hospitalization, chronic illness, disability-
related reasons, and/or mental health reasons may
receive exemption from this policy at the discretion of
the administration.

1. No student shall take part in any practice, athletic


contest, co-curricular activity, or school-
sponsored event on any day in which he/she has
failed to report to school before 10:00am, without
the consent of the principal or his designee. If a
student is absent on a Friday, he/she will not be
permitted to participate in a scheduled weekend
activity without the consent of the principal. A
student who is dismissed from school will not be
able to participate in a school activity or athletic
event unless approved in advance by the
administration.

2. Hamilton-Wenham Regional High School enforces


a "no-cut" policy. Students who are absent or
tardy without school and parent permission will
be considered truant and receive disciplinary
consequences. Any student who cuts a class will
receive a ten point reduction in his/her grade for
the applicable quarter. Students who cut class
and leave the building without permission will
receive additional disciplinary consequences from
the administration. Administrative detention will
be assigned to repeat offenders.

3. Any student who is absent from a class more than


seven times in a quarter will receive a grade of
"N," indicating failure due to poor attendance. A
student who receives an "N" for one quarter can
still receive a passing grade for the semester if
he/she maintains passing grades and he/she is
not absent more than seven times in the other
quarter. In these cases, the teacher will use the
numerical average of 59 or the student's quarter
average, whichever is lower, for the purpose of
calculating a final grade. Students who receive
one or more “N” grades will be ineligible for

34
Academic Achievement Roll. Prolonged absences
can be appealed to the administration.

4. Any student who earns two N's in a semester


course will receive no credit for the course.
Students may not use summer school credit to
make-up courses failed due to poor attendance.
A student who receives an N for the semester will
be required to repeat the course the following
year.

5. Parents of students who are approaching the


maximum allowable number of absences will
receive a letter from the administration when the
student has been absent for five classes in a
quarter. Absences due to school field trips,
college visits, death in the family, suspension,
and religious observances are not included in
these totals.
Attendance Policy Appeals
If a student feels that his/her class cut or attendance
failure was the result of extenuating circumstances,
he/she may file an appeal with the assistant principal or
principal. Appeals procedures have been established to
address each of these circumstances.

1. When a student is absent from class without


permission, the school will notify parents that
their son/daughter has cut a class, received a
zero for missed work, and lost ten points from
his/her grade for the quarter. If a student and/or
parent feels that there are extenuating
circumstances that should be considered by the
administration, the student and/or parent may
submit a written request to the principal
explaining the reasons why the cut should be
waived. The appeal must be initiated within
three days of receiving the cut letter.

2. Students likely to receive an N due to extended


hospitalization, chronic illness, disability-related
reasons, or mental health issues are eligible to
receive a waiver from the Principal or assistant

35
principal. If a student feels that his/her
circumstances fall into this category, his/her
parent should provide the assistant principal with
medical documentation prior to the end of the
quarter.

3. Any student who receives an N for the quarter or


semester and believes that his/her circumstances
merit a waiver of the attendance policy may
appeal his case to the Attendance Review
Committee. All appeals must be initiated no later
than the third school day following the
distribution of report cards. The student filing the
appeal must obtain an attendance printout from
the main office secretary and provide a written
description of the reason for each of his/her
absences prior to meeting with the committee.

Policy on Extended Absences from School Because of


Illness, Disease, or Special Treatment
The Hamilton-Wenham Regional High School policy on
extended absences from school due to illness, disease,
or special treatment reflects MGL Chapter 71, Section 2
and Code of Massachusetts Regulations 28.00 Special
Education CMR 28.03 (3) (c) entitled “Educational
Services in Home or Hospital.” All requests for
home/hospital tutoring must be accompanied by a
statement from the student’s physician specifying the
clinical diagnosis and documenting the student's inability
to attend school. When a student requires a home or
hospital tutoring program, he/she will receive credit for
academic work only if the tutor is approved by the
Hamilton-Wenham Regional School District. The content
must be parallel to Hamilton-Wenham content and
approved by the high school administration. When the
tutor certifies that the student has completed the
assigned work, credit will be granted. The guidance
counselor will act as a liaison with the tutor for all
regular education course work.

Truancy
Truancy is absence from school for the entire day or any
part of it for reasons other than illness and without prior

36
permission from the school and from parents. If a parent
does not call to excuse a student's absence, the School
Nurse will call parents to determine whether or not the
student has parental permission to miss school.

Truancy may occur when:


1. A student arrives late or does not arrive at all
without permission.

2. The student leaves the building at any time during


the school day without permission. The student is
considered truant regardless of the length of time
spent out of the building. He/she is also considered
truant whether or not he/she returns later in the
day.

Disciplinary Consequences
1. A student who is truant and misses classes will
receive a cut for each class missed that day as
well as four days of administrative detention. If
the student is under the age of sixteen, a Child in
Need of Services petition may be filed.

2. Any student who arrives late without permission


and misses more than thirty minutes of first
period will be considered truant and receive
appropriate consequences.

3. Any student with an assigned parking space who


leaves school or arrives at 8:15 a.m. or later
without permission will have his/her parking
privileges suspended as follows:

First Offense: Two week suspension of parking


privileges and/or 4 Administrative
Detentions
Second Offense: Eight week suspension of
parking privileges and/or 8
Administrative Detentions
Third Offense: Parking privileges revoked for
remainder of school year and/or
Suspension

37
4. Any athlete who is truant will receive the following
consequences:
a. On the first offense, the student will be
suspended from the team, pending a
meeting with the Athletic Director and
coach.

b. Within three (3) school days, the student


will present his/her case before the Athletic
Director and coach. They will, after hearing
the student's case, determine an
appropriate punishment, with final authority
resting on the Athletic Director.

c. Upon the second truancy offense, the


student will be dismissed from the team for
the remainder of the season.

Tardiness To School
1. A student is considered to be tardy if he/she is not
in first period class at 7:45 a.m. Tardiness due to a
medical or court appointment will not be counted if
the student provides a note from the court or
doctor’s office.

2. A student who arrives late to school and misses


one or more classes will be held to policies for
school attendance as detailed in attendance
procedures section. In addition, the absence will
be counted towards the seven absence limit.

3. Administrative detention will be assigned to every


student who exceeds five tardies in a semester.
Students who accumulate more than five tardies
will receive detention for the sixth and each
subsequent tardy. Any student who drives to
school and arrives late ten times will lose the
privilege of bringing his/her car to school for
the remainder of the school year and forfeit
his/her parking fee.
Tardiness to Class

38
Tardiness to class will be handled by the classroom
teacher according to the following guidelines:

1. Students who are frequently tardy will receive


consequences directly from the classroom
teacher. Any student who fails to serve his/her
consequences for tardiness will receive
administrative detention.

2. Students who arrive more than thirty minutes late


to class without teacher permission will receive a
class cut.

Dismissals
Any student who leaves school during the day before
11:00 a.m. will be considered absent for that day. Any
student planning to be dismissed will bring a dismissal
request note from a parent or guardian to the front office
between 7:30 and 7:40 a.m. on the day of the dismissal
with the reason stated for requesting the early
departure. A telephone call may be made to verify
dismissal before the student leaves the school. Each
student leaving early must bring his/her dismissal slip to
the front office at the time of his or her departure.
Students are also required to check-in with the front
office upon returning to school.

College Visits
The school encourages juniors and seniors to visit
colleges during weekends and school vacations.
Students may be granted up to three (3) college visits if
the appropriate guidance form is completed with all
necessary signatures, and pre-approved by the assistant
principal at least one day in advance of the visit.

Non-School Trips
The school year provides several vacation periods. We
expect and encourage families to plan any trips,
educational or recreational, during these times. Any
days missed due to family trips will be counted toward
the maximum number of absences allowed per quarter.

39
We recognize that occasionally a student must be away
from school with his or her family due to unusual family
circumstances. In such cases, allowances may be made
if the school is notified in advance in writing to obtain
the appropriate trip request form to be completed at
least three (3) school days in advance of the absences.

1. The school will allow a student one school day


more than the number of school days missed
to make up work, but no more than six (6)
school days. A student who does not make up
missed work within the allotted time will
receive zeros on all incomplete assignments,
quizzes, tests, etc.

2. A student who is granted make-up work for a


non-school trip is required to see his/her
teachers beforehand to make arrangements
to complete assignments. When reasonably
known before the trip, all written assignments
are due before the student’s departure or on
the day of his/her return. It is the student’s
responsibility to obtain assignments and
make up work within established time limits.

3. Teachers are under no obligation to provide


extra help or tutoring for missed work.

4. If a family elects to take a vacation while


school is in session, parents should be aware
that these absences will count toward the
maximum of seven absences allowed per
quarter. If a student's combined absences
due to illness and vacation days exceed the
established maximum, the student will
receive an attendance failure for the quarter.

5. In the event that a student misses school as a


result of a trip or vacation for which no
advance notice is given or trip form filed, no
make-up authorization will be issued by the
office for the time missed from classes.

40
STUDENT CONDUCT AND DISCIPLINARY
REGULATIONS

Expectations, Rules, and Regulations for Student


Discipline
As detailed in the Hamilton-Wenham mission and
expectations for learning, students will develop the
ability to make healthy choices and exhibit honesty,
integrity, and personal responsibility. The school
believes in the educational value of discipline applied
with compassion and firmness to maintain a safe school
climate, support community norms, and encourage
responsible behavior and sound decision-making. Our
goal is assist students in internalizing school and
community rules so that they can make healthy
decisions, work cooperatively with others, and contribute
to a healthy and positive learning environment. When a
violation of school rules occurs, each student is entitled
to a fair hearing with administration, at which time
he/she can respond to the allegations that have been
made and offer his/her perspective.

The Individual Education Plan (IEP) for every special


education student will indicate whether the student can
be expected to meet the school discipline code or if
he/she requires modifications. If a modification is
required, any changes will be written into the IEP.

General Rules for Student Conduct


Students are expected to adhere to the following general
rules in the classroom, directed study halls, hallways,
library, and cafeteria.

- Any student who leaves his/her classroom or


directed study must have a signed pass from
his/her teacher.
- No student will be allowed to use or wear audio
equipment such as iPods, MP3 players, cell
phones, CD players in the building between
7:30am and 2:30pm.

41
- Students are not allowed to use cell phones in the
building. Students are permitted to use a
telephone in the front office.
- No games will be allowed in the lunchroom,
library, hallways, or directed study hall during the
school day.
- No student will wear a hat, hood, visor, or
sunglasses in the school building or courtyard.
- Students are to refrain from creating violent
images. These images will be interpreted as
intimidation, bullying, harassment, or a threat to
public safety.

Directed Study Hall Rules


In order to provide our students with the greatest
possibility of academic success, all students are required
to attend directed study halls when they are not
scheduled for a class. A directed study hall is a time for
students to engage productively in school/curriculum
related activities including their LEARN Portfolio. A
student may leave directed with a pass from a teacher
or counselor providing that he/she signs out with the
directed study teacher and remains in that location until
he/she returns to directed study. Students who cut a
directed study hall or fail to comply with proper sign-out
procedures will receive administrative detention and/or
suspension of pass privileges.
Student Conduct and Disciplinary Policies
Abusive Language
Abusive language, including bullying, intimidating, racial
or sexual epithets, obscene gestures, or hate speech
toward a teacher, staff member, or student or vulgar
language anywhere in the school will carry up to a three
day suspension.

Academic Honesty
Students enter the academic community in order to
learn. The learning process requires time, effort, and
patience for understanding and assimilating material,
applying concepts through practice, and generating
original thinking. Students who engage in cheating,
plagiarism, or falsifying academic records lose the

42
opportunity to demonstrate what they have learned,
sacrifice personal integrity, and undermine the trust
between students and faculty that forms the foundation
of a supportive educational community.

The following behaviors are examples of academic


dishonesty:

Avoidance of Deadlines and/or Assessments:


While students may occasionally be absent from school
for legitimate physical or mental health reasons, a
pattern of absences on test days and/or when
assignments are due may be considered a breach of
academic honesty. Any student who intentionally
misses a test, quiz, exam, or project deadline for the
sole purpose of avoiding a due date, extending
preparation time, and/or obtaining information from
other students will receive disciplinary consequences for
academic dishonesty.

Cheating: Cheating is defined as obtaining an unfair


advantage in completing academic work, cheating may
take a variety of forms, including the following:

• The use of unauthorized books, calculators,


notebooks, or other resources during testing.
• Copying another student’s homework, papers,
projects, or ideas (see plagiarism).
• Giving another student your work to be copied or
passed in as their own (see plagiarism).
• Obtaining access to a test, quiz, or exam before the
scheduled administration.
• Relying on another student or parent for completion
of homework, papers, or projects.
• Talking or gesturing to another student during a test,
quiz, or exam. Any communication during an
assessment will be interpreted as cheating,
regardless of the subject matter being discussed.
• Utilization of cell phones to access information during
exams.
• Copying another student’s answers during a test,
quiz, or exam.

43
• Accessing or attempting to gain access to computer
files belonging to another student or faculty member.

Falsifying Student Records: At times, students may


be required to deliver report cards, progress notices,
comment sheets, or other school documents to parents,
alterations to these documents by students are a breach
of academic honesty.

Plagiarism: Plagiarism is a serious form of cheating.


Using another person's words, ideas or thoughts without
giving credit to the author is considered plagiarism;
whether you express those ideas in your own words or
directly quote the source. Examples of plagiarism
include the following:

• Direct copying of text from a book, article, internet


resource, or another student’s work.
• Claiming ideas from a book, article, or electronic
resource as your own or including these ideas in your
work without proper citation.
• Use of a unique term or concept from a book, article,
electronic resource, or another student’s work
without proper citation.
• Use of false data or citations.
• Submission of a paper or project for more than one
class without approval of both teachers.

(Definitions of cheating and plagiarism adapted from


Needham High School Student Handbook and Wheaton
College Honor Code.)

Incidents of academic dishonesty will be reported to the


assistant principal, who will assign disciplinary
consequences as follows:

First Violation of Academic Honesty Policy:


1. The student will receive a zero grade on
the assignment. On tests or other assignments with
multiple sections, the teacher may isolate the part of
the assignment compromised by the violation and
assign a zero for that section, or impose a zero for
the entire assignment, at his/her discretion.

44
2. Depending on the severity of the
infraction, the student may be subject to additional
disciplinary consequences, including detention
and/or community service.
3. If the student holds a leadership position
in athletics or school activities or membership in
National Honor Society, his/her infraction will be
referred to the faculty advisor or coach for further
disciplinary action.

Subsequent Violations of Academic Honesty


Policy:
1. The student will receive a zero grade on
the assignment.
2. Depending on the severity of the
infraction, the student will receive additional
consequences ranging from a minimum of three
detentions to a one day suspension from school.
3. The student may be subject to additional
penalties including loss of credit for the course,
suspension from activities or athletics, and loss of
leadership positions in extracurricular activities and
athletics.

Any student accused of academic dishonesty may


request:
First: A review by the department chairperson
Second: A hearing before a committee chaired by the
principal, assistant principal, or another designated
chair, and consisting of one faculty member and one
student appointed by the chair. The committee will
have the authority to overturn or alter the decision of
the teacher, including recommending an alternate
assignment for the student. In all cases, the penalty
remains in effect during the hearing and appeal
phase.

Alcohol and Other Drug Use, Possession, and Distribution


Hamilton-Wenham Regional High School is strongly
committed to providing an alcohol and other drug- free
school environment for all students. Recognizing the
impact of substance use on school attendance,
academic performance, student investment in school,

45
and school climate and culture, the high school
promotes and adheres to a zero tolerance policy for
illegal drug use, possession, and distribution for
students, teachers, and staff both on school grounds and
at school events. For the purpose of this policy, the
definition of illegal drug includes drug paraphernalia, any
central nervous system depressant (including alcohol),
central nervous system stimulant, hallucinogen,
phencyclidine or any derivative, narcotic analgesics,
inhalants, or cannabis (marijuana) products, or abuse of
any over the counter medication. In addition, students
are prohibited from possessing and self-administering
any prescription drugs, with or without a doctor’s orders,
on school grounds. All prescription medication must be
delivered to the school nurse for monitoring and
administration. Narcotic medications will not be
administered at school and should not be brought to
school under any circumstances.

Faculty, students, and staff are expected to play a


proactive role in maintaining a healthy, positive school
culture that prevents illegal drug use. If a teacher,
student, faculty, or staff member suspects that a student
is impaired or “under the influence” of an illegal drug,
he/she is directly responsible for immediately reporting
his/her concerns to the principal or assistant principal.
The school will continue to provide assistance to any
student voluntarily seeking alcohol and other drug
treatment and advice.

When a student is suspected of being “under the


influence” or impaired by an illegal drug, the following
procedures will be used:

1. The student will be escorted to the nurse’s


office by the principal or assistant principal. If the
nurse’s office is unavailable (as in an off school
event), another private location will be chosen.

2. The school nurse or, in her absence, an


administrator will perform a screening procedure to
assess whether the student may have used an illegal
substance. If alcohol use is suspected and the
student denies use, the student will be asked to take

46
an alcohol screening test to confirm that he/she is
not under the influence of alcohol. If a student
refuses to participate in a screening test to assess
whether alcohol has been consumed, the principal or
assistant principal will make a determination based
on other evidence available, including physical signs
of alcohol consumption, observations by other
witnesses, and a student interview.

3. If the evaluation by the nurse or administrator


provides reasonable suspicion that the student is
under the influence or impaired, a parent will be
contacted to take the student to his/her physician or
a local hospital emergency room to more
conclusively determine the student’s condition
through drug testing. If the parent does so and no
drugs are found to be present, the student will return
to school immediately with no further consequences.

4. If the student refuses to be screened, or if


medical documentation cannot rule out the presence
of an illegal drug at the time in question, or if the
student admits to drug use, disciplinary
consequences will be implemented as detailed
below.

5. Provisions related to search and seizure will


be followed any time there is a reasonable suspicion
of illegal drug use. If the student is in possession of
an illegal drug or drug paraphernalia, the police will
be notified. Any confiscated drug or paraphernalia
will be turned over to the police.

Disciplinary Consequences:
First Violation of Illegal Drug Possession, Use,
Impairment, or “Under the Influence”
Any student, who is determined to be under the
influence, impaired by, and/or in possession of alcohol or
any other illegal drug or drug paraphernalia in school or
at a school-sponsored or school-related event, including
athletic games, will receive a ten day suspension.
Parents will be contacted immediately to ensure the
student’s safe departure from school and devise a re-
entry plan that includes the following:

47
1. The student will arrange for weekly
counseling with a substance abuse treatment
professional to be paid for by the student and his/her
parents. A minimum number of counseling sessions
will be determined by parents and assistant principal.
A release for communication between the school and
service provider must be signed prior to reentry.

2. If the student is found to be in possession or


under the influence of illegal drugs, he/she must
commit to a defined schedule of blood or urine tests
for sixty days. This commitment must be made prior
to returning from suspension. A letter from a
physician must be provided to verify that these tests
have been performed.

After the first violation of this policy, the student will be


immediately suspended from participation in athletics,
student government, and any membership, leadership,
or supporting role in school-sponsored activities. Policy
violations by National Honor Society students will be
referred to the NHS Faculty Council. Determination of
reinstatement for athletes will follow MIAA guidelines as
indicated below. If a student is suspended from an
extracurricular activity, it is his/her responsibility to
request a reinstatement hearing with his/her activity
advisor no more than five (5) days later than the time of
the infraction. (A student who does not request a
hearing within this time frame will be automatically
dismissed from the activity.) A panel consisting of the
faculty advisor for the activity, guidance counselor, and
assistant principal will review the student’s case and
make a decision regarding reinstatement. In addition,
any student who violates this policy at a school dance or
school-sponsored event will not be allowed to attend
school dances or proms for one calendar year.

Second and Subsequent Violations of School


Policy on Illegal Drug Possession, Use,
Impairment, or “Under the Influence”
Any student who is determined to be under the influence
or in possession of an illegal drug in school or at any

48
school event for the second time during his/her high
school career may be subject to expulsion for a period of
time determined by the principal. Expulsion hearing
procedures are detailed on pages 36-37 of the Student
Handbook.

Distribution of Illegal Drugs on School Property or


at a School Event
Any student who distributes or intends to distribute
illegal drugs on school property or at a school-sponsored
event may be subject to permanent expulsion from the
school district. Intent to distribute will be determined, in
part, by the quantity of drugs in the student’s
possession. A report will be provided to the Hamilton
police department.

Athletics: MIAA Drug and Alcohol Policy


As part of the proactive expectation inherent in the
Hamilton-Wenham Regional High School alcohol and
other drug policy, it is expected that coaches will play an
integral role in the implementation of mandated MIAA
policies and reporting procedures. Coaches are
responsible for immediately reporting all violations of
MIAA policy to the high school Athletic Director. The
high school will adhere to the following MIAA policies in
disciplining student athletes:

First Violation: Students participating in school


athletics who violate the school policy will be
immediately suspended from the team. Within (5)
school days, the athlete may request a hearing with
his/her coach and the Athletic Director (if the athlete
does not request a hearing within this time frame,
he/she will be automatically dismissed from the team).
After hearing the athlete’s case and reviewing the
particular situation, the Athletic Director, in consultation
with the principal and the coach, will determine whether
the athlete should be dismissed or reinstated as a team
member.

Minimally, an athlete who is reinstated will be subject to


a suspension for a quarter of the games in a full sports

49
season (from the time of the hearing). Depending upon
the severity of the offense and the attitude of the
athlete, he/she may be allowed to practice with the team
and attend games (but cannot dress in a game uniform).

At the end of the suspension period, the coach and


Athletic Director will review the athlete’s conduct. If the
athlete’s conduct has not been exemplary during this
time, the coach and the Athletic Director can extend the
suspension or dismiss the athlete from the team.

A captain who violates the substance rule, whether in


season or out of season, will be removed from his/her
captaincy for the current or next sport season. A
student may be considered for captaincy in a future
season if selected by team and approved by coach.

Second and Subsequent Violations: When the


principal confirms, following an opportunity for the
student to be heard according to the hearing procedures
outlined above, that a second or subsequent violations
have occurred, the student shall lose eligibility for the
next consecutive interscholastic events totaling 60% of
all interscholastic contests in that sport.

If after the second or subsequent violations the student


of his or her own volition becomes a participant in an
approved chemical dependency or treatment program,
the student may be certified for reinstatement in MIAA
activities after a minimum of 40% of events. Such
certification must be issued by the director or a
counselor of a chemical dependency/treatment center.

Penalties shall be cumulative each academic year. If the


penalty period is not completed during the season of
violation, the penalty shall carry over to the student’s
next season of actual participation, which may affect the
eligibility status of the student during the next academic
year.

50
Assault on a Faculty or Staff Member
Any student, who assaults a principal, assistant principal,
teacher, teacher's aide or other educational staff on
school premises or at school-sponsored or school-related
events, including athletic games, may be subject to
expulsion from the school or school district by the
principal.

Bicycles, Unicycles, Skateboards, Scooter, Wheeled


Sneakers, and Other Transportation Devices
The use of bicycles, unicycles, skateboard, scooters,
wheeled sneakers and/or any other motorized or
wheeled transportation devices in the school building
before, during, or after school is strictly prohibited for
safety reasons.

Bullying
Hamilton-Wenham Regional High School is committed to
maintaining a learning environment that is free from
bullying. Bullying is defined as the act or acts of one or
more individuals which has as its intended purpose and
effect the intimidation of one of more persons through
verbal, written, drawn, physical, sexual and/or emotional
abuse. This may include (but need not): threats to do
bodily harm, weapon possession, thievery, actual bodily
harm, unlawful touching, gang activity, and/or civil rights
violations. All incidents of bullying should be referred to
the principal and/or assistant principal for investigation.
The principal or assistant principal shall promptly and
reasonably investigate all allegations of bullying.
Bullying in the school building, on school grounds, on the
bus or school-sanctioned transportation, or at school-
sponsored functions will be grounds for disciplinary
action up to and including suspension and expulsion.
Retaliation in any form against a student who has made
a bullying complaint (or has had one made on his/her
behalf) is strictly prohibited.

Bus Conduct
Students who ride the school bus will be expected to
adhere to the following code of conduct:

51
1. Each student shall be seated immediately upon
entering the bus in the place assigned by the driver
or monitor if such assignments have been made.

2. Students should remain seated during the trips.

3. Loud, boisterous, or profane language, or indecent


conduct shall not be tolerated.

4. No windows or doors will be opened or closed except


by permission of the driver or monitor.

5. No student shall enter or leave the bus until it has


come to a full stop, and the door has been opened by
the driver.

6. Students are to obey the directions of the bus driver


or monitor, and will identify themselves correctly
when requested to do so by the monitor or the
driver.

7. There is to be no lighting of matches or smoking at


the bus stop or on the bus.

8. Students are not to throw objects on the bus or out


of the windows.

9. Students shall not put their hands or their heads out


of the windows.

10. Students are responsible to arrive at the bus stop on


time.

11. Students must help to keep the bus clean.

12. Students will pay for any damage done to the bus.

13. Students are not to stand in the stairwell of the bus.

52
A student’s first incident of disruptive behavior will result
in a suspension of bus privileges for two weeks, and may
call for school disciplinary consequences. A second
incident will result in at least an extended suspension of
bus privileges and school disciplinary consequences.

Cafeteria and Lunch Decorum


All students will remain in the cafeteria or courtyard
(weather permitting) during the lunch period. Because
half of the school will remain in classes during each of
the lunch periods, it is imperative that no students be in
the academic corridors during their assigned lunch
block. Students may leave the cafeteria only with an
appointment slip or pass from a teacher or guidance
counselor. Students will not be allowed to go to their
lockers during lunch.
Students will eat only in the cafeteria. Food is not to
taken anywhere else in the building, including the foyer,
the halls, classrooms, the music room or the auditorium,
during lunchtime. Any student who fails to pick up
his/her trash OR does not assist in cleaning up as
requested will receive detention. Throwing food or
objects in the cafeteria will result in suspension from
school.

Cell Phones/Beepers/Electronic Equipment


No student will be allowed to use or wear a cell phone,
camera phone, beeper, “walkman”, I Pod, MP3 player,
CD player, or other electronic equipment in the building
between 7:30am and 2:30pm. Use of audio equipment or
electronic devices in the classroom, corridor, cafeteria,
library, or directed study hall will result in administrative
detention for each violation. Repeated violations will
result in additional disciplinary consequences up to and
including confiscation and suspension from school.

Cigarettes/Tobacco Products
The use or possession of tobacco products or smoking
paraphernalia by students, including, but not limited to,
cigarettes, snuff, chewing tobacco, pipes, cigarette
papers, and cigarette lighters is prohibited in the school
and on school grounds during the school day, before and

53
after school, and at school sponsored athletic and social
functions during weekends and evenings. Consequences
for possession of tobacco products are as follows:
First Offense: Confiscation and a letter sent home to
parents. Student will be required to serve
administrative detention.
Second Offense: Confiscation, letter sent home to
parents, and five detentions plus required meeting
with Health Coordinator.
Subsequent Offenses: Suspension at the discretion of
the administration.

Massachusetts State Law prohibits smoking by any


person in school, on school grounds and at school
sponsored athletic or co-curricular events. Any student
who violates this law will receive a minimum of one-day
suspension.

Dance Rules and Policies


Students are expected to adhere to the following rules in
organizing and attending school dances:

1. No school dance may be held without proper


authorization from the faculty advisor and
administration. Two forms must be filled out prior to
an event, a building use form and an activity form.
Both are available in the front office.

2. Students must be present in school by 10:00 a.m. on


the day of the event. No student dismissed from
school on the day of the dance will be allowed to
participate without permission of the principal or his
designee. Any student who attends a dance on the
day of an absence or unapproved dismissal will be
removed from the dance and forfeit the next three
dances and/or proms.

3. Each student is allowed to bring one high school age


guest to the dance if he/she follows pre-approval
procedures by signing the guest list no later than
Friday at 2:30pm on the week of the dance. No
guests will be admitted to the dance unless

54
accompanied by the host. Guests are responsible for
adhering to all Hamilton-Wenham Regional High
School rules. Non-high school age guests may be
allowed for Prom’s only at the sole discretion of the
building principal.

4. Once a student has entered the dance, he or she will


not be readmitted if he or she leaves.

5. All school rules and policies are in effect at school


dances and proms, including alcohol, tobacco, and
other drug policies. No student or guest may have
on his or her person alcohol, tobacco, or other illegal
drugs nor will persons "under the influence" be
allowed to enter the dance. All students entering
school dances or proms will take an alcohol
screening test administered by the principal,
assistant principal, or other school official. Every
attempt will be made to conduct the screening in a
private setting. If the student receives a positive
reading, the test will be repeated after fifteen
minutes to exclude the possibility of residual mouth
alcohol from cough syrup or mouthwash. If a student
tests positive after a second screening, his/her
parents will be contacted and he/she will be released
directly to his parents. If school officials believe
there is a need for possible medical services, they
will also contact medical emergency services.

6. If a student arrives at a school dance or prom and


refuses the alcohol screening test, his/her parents
will be notified and asked to transport the student
from the dance. If evidence suggests that the
student is under the influence of alcohol, the student
will be interviewed by school administrators and, if it
is determined that he/she has consumed alcohol,
disciplinary procedures will be followed.

7. Disciplinary consequences for alcohol and other


illegal drug use will be assigned as detailed in the
Alcohol and Other Drug Policy of the student
handbook. Any student who is determined to be in
possession or under the influence of alcohol or other

55
illegal drugs at a school dance or prom will be
prohibited from attending school dances or proms for
one calendar year. Any senior who tests positive or
brings drugs or alcohol to the Senior Prom will not be
permitted to attend graduation. Diplomas will be
withheld for presentation at a later date.

8. At 9:00 p.m. the doors will be closed and no students


will be admitted without prior approval from the
principal or assistant principal.

9. A student who is suspended will not be allowed to


attend a school activity until he/she is readmitted to
school.

10. School dances will end at 11:00 p.m. Students are


expected to arrange for pick-up in advance and leave
school promptly at 11:00 p.m.

Dress Code
Students are expected to dress appropriately for school.
The following guidelines are provided in order to guide
each family in making appropriate decisions that support
a safe and productive learning environment.

1. Footwear must be worn at all times for health


reasons (inside the building and on the grounds).

2. Dress that is clearly disruptive of the school


environment will not be allowed. This may include
but is not limited to apparel that advocates or
displays illegal or inappropriate items or activities as
well as clothing that displays messages or images
that harass, demean, or intimidate an individual or
group of individuals based on race, color, gender,
religion, national origin, sexual orientation, or
disability.

3. Clothing such as bathing suits, tank tops, tube


tops, halter tops, tops with spaghetti straps, exposed
midriffs, see through shirts, underwear as outer
wear, beach attire, bed wear, baggy or ill fitting

56
pants, low cut tops, or garments that expose
undergarments do not contribute to a productive
learning culture. These articles of clothing are
inappropriate in the business and workplace as well
as the school, and therefore are not allowed.

4. Students should not wear clothes that constrict or


limit normal daily activities or movement.

5. No student will wear a hood, hat, visor, bandana,


and/or sunglasses in the school building or courtyard.

Wearing of a hat, visor, or sunglasses will result in


confiscation and assignment of administrative detention.
HWRHS is not responsible for any loss of hats, visors, or
sunglasses that may occur as a result of confiscation.

Each student who wears clothing prohibited by this


policy will receive an administrative detention and report
directly to the nurse for a modification of the
inappropriate clothing. Parents will be notified if a
student continues to violate the school dress code after
receiving two warnings.

Fighting/Physical Intimidation
Any student who is involved in fighting or physical
intimidation may be suspended for up to five days. This
consequence will be imposed on all students involved in
these behaviors, regardless of which student initiated
the confrontation.

Fireworks
The possession or use of fireworks of any kind, smoke
bombs, or "stink bombs" will result in suspension for up
to five days and the police will be involved.

Gambling
Student gambling of any type, including sports betting
and card playing, is prohibited at the high school.
Depending on the severity of the incident, any student
who gambles on school grounds will receive disciplinary

57
consequences up to and including suspension from
school.
Gymnasium, Weight Room, and Locker Room Areas
No student will be allowed in the gymnasium area,
including the weight room and student locker rooms, at
any time during the school day other than his/her
assigned Health Science class. Any student who is found
in these areas when he/she is not in class will receive
disciplinary consequences as follows:

First Offense: Two administrative detentions


Second Offense: Four administrative detentions and
loss of pass privileges
Subsequent Offenses: Suspension from school

Harassment
The Hamilton-Wenham Regional School District School
Committee is committed to the prevention of
harassment based upon sex, race, color, national origin,
religion, age, disability or sexual orientation. A
harassment policy has been developed to ensure that
the educational opportunities of all students, and the
employment conditions of all employees, are not
threatened or limited by such harassment, and to ensure
that individuals are free to work, learn, and develop
relationships without fear of intimidation, humiliation or
degradation. See Appendix B.
Hazing
Any student or organization participating in hazing as
defined by the state statute shall be disciplined
appropriately and reported immediately to the local
police department for action. See Appendix A.

Insubordination
Students are expected to contribute to a mutually
respectful, supportive, and safe school environment by
cooperating with directions given by administrators,
teachers and staff members. When asked to provide
his/her name, every student will be expected to provide
this information in a respectful manner. Any student
who refuses to provide his/her name and/or fails to
follow directions given by any administrator, faculty or

58
staff member, custodian, cafeteria staff, secretary, or
teacher aide will be subject to disciplinary
consequences, up to and including suspension from
school.

Internet and E-Mail Privileges


It is our expectation that student, staff, and faculty use
of electronic mail will conform to the district’s general
standards and rules for behavior as outlined in the
internet and electronic communication policies included
in Appendix C of this handbook. Individuals must be
responsible for their own actions in using Electronic Mail
communications over the Internet, and must realize that
their access to this resource may be revoked, with due
process, for violation of the Acceptable Use Policy.

The use of instant messaging and/or social networking


sites such as myspace.com on school or personal
computers on school grounds before, during, or after
school will result in suspension of student computer
privileges. Any use of electronic communication or web
sites to demean, embarrass, bully, or harass students or
staff will result in disciplinary consequences up to and
including suspension regardless of whether
communication is initiated on or off school grounds.

Leaving the Building without Permission


Students must remain in the school building throughout
the school day unless they are under teacher
supervision. This includes the parking lot and school
grounds, including the athletic fields. Any student who
leaves the building without permission will be considered
truant and receive the appropriate disciplinary
consequences for the time spent out of the building.

Musical Instruments
At times, students may bring musical instruments to
school for approved use in the classroom or extra-
curricular activities. Any other use of musical
instruments during the school day must be confined to
the practice rooms unless the student has prior
permission from the administration.

59
Pass Privileges
Every student who leaves his/her classroom or study hall
must have a signed pass from his/her teacher. Library
passes must be requested and pre-approved by the
librarian prior to directed study. Students may report
only to the destination indicated on the pass. Any
student, who forges a teacher, counselor, or
administrator’s signature on a pass, fails to report to the
location designated on his/her pass, and/or uses a pass
for longer than reasonably expected by the classroom
teacher will be subject to disciplinary action, including
administrative detention and suspension of pass
privileges.

Theft
Theft of school property or another person's possessions
will carry up to a three day suspension, restitution, and
may be reported to the police.
Throwing Food or Objects
Throwing food or any object on school property will
result in a minimum of one-day suspension.

Truancy
Truancy is absence from school for the entire day or any
part of it for reasons other than illness and without prior
permission from the school and from parents. Any
student who leaves the building during the school day
without permission will be considered truant.
Disciplinary consequences for truancy are detailed in the
attendance section of the Student Handbook.

Vandalism
Any student who willfully defaces or destroys school
property, or intentionally misuses school equipment
(science room showers, fire alarms and extinguishers,
etc.), will be suspended for up to five days and be
reported to the police.

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Weapons
Any student found on school premises or at school-
sponsored or school-related events, including athletic
games, in possession of a dangerous weapon, including,
but not limited to, an explosive, gun, or knife may be
subject to expulsion from the school or school district by
the principal.
Disciplinary Procedures
Administrative Detention
1. Students must report to detention by 2:30 p.m.
with all of their materials; no passes to lockers or
classrooms will be allowed.

2. Students will not be allowed to reschedule


detention due to work, athletics, or other
extracurricular activities. In order to avoid receiving
a cut for missed detention, a parent must provide
documentation of the extenuating circumstances to
the assistant principal in advance of the scheduled
date.

3. If a detention is missed, two detentions will be


assigned. If either of these detentions is missed, the
student will be suspended from school.

4. Detention will be held from 2:30 - 3:15 p.m. If a


student is more than 5 minutes late, he/she will not
be admitted. If a student is less than 5 minutes late,
he/she must serve the additional time at the end of
the detention period.

5. Students should work on school related


assignments during the detentions. Students will not
be permitted to play games, talk, sleep or "do
nothing". If students do not use the entire time
appropriately, the detention monitor will ask them to
leave and the detention will be repeated.

Suspension Policy and Procedures


The principal and assistant principal of the school are
empowered to suspend any student under their

61
jurisdiction for disruptive behavior or other cause subject
to the following conditions:

1. Except as provided in paragraph 4 below, no


student shall be suspended from school unless the
principal or assistant principal shall first have given
the student verbal notice of the reasons for the
proposed suspension, an explanation of the
evidence, and an opportunity for the student to
present his or her version of the facts.

2. If, after the student has been given notice and an


opportunity to be heard, the principal or assistant
principal decides that the suspension is justified, the
student shall be informed of the duration of the
suspension.

3. No student who has been suspended shall be


permitted to leave the school building prior to the
end of a school day unless his or her parent or
guardian has first been notified of the suspension.

4. If, in the judgment of the principal or assistant


principal, a student's presence poses a continuing
danger to persons or property or a continuing threat
of unduly disrupting the academic process, the
student may be immediately suspended and
removed from the school, provided that as soon as
practical, and in any event not later than the second
school day following the suspension, that student
shall be given notice of the reasons for the
suspension and an opportunity to be heard as
provided in paragraph 1 above.

5. A student who has been suspended for more than


five days in any quarter may be referred for
consideration by the Student Assistance Team or an
evaluation under Chapter 766.

6. Any student who has been suspended or


excluded from school is not allowed to be on school
property unless he/she has requested and obtained
prior permission from the Principal's Office. These

62
students are also not allowed to participate in any
class or school related functions held off school
property (i.e., proms, car wash, pancake breakfast,
etc.)

7. Any infraction of a school rule at a dance, which


results in a suspension, will also result in the
forfeiture of dance and prom privileges for one
calendar year.

8. Each student is expected to complete the majority of


missed work on the day(s) of suspension. It is the
student’s responsibility to obtain information from
teachers regarding missed assignments. Teachers
are not responsible for providing the student with
instruction on any work missed during a suspension.
Any long-term assignments due during the
suspension must be submitted to the teacher on the
deadline originally assigned.

When a student returns from suspension, he/she will


have not more than the same number of days as the
length of the suspension to complete missed work
(i.e., five days suspension equals five days to make-
up work.) The number of days will be counted
beginning on the student re-entry date. Any student
who fails to meet this deadline will receive a grade of
zero for each missed assignment.

Any make-up work will receive a grade of 60 or the


grade earned by the student, whichever is lower,
unless the student successfully completes two pre-
approved hours of community service for each day
missed during the suspension. Documentation of
completed community service must be provided to
the assistant principal prior to the end of the quarter.
The assistant principal will notify teachers when the
student becomes eligible for full credit.

9. When it is known that the suspension of a special needs


student will accumulate to 10 days in a school year,
a Team Meeting will be held to determine the
appropriateness of the student's placement or
program. If necessary an alternative plan will be

63
developed with participation from parents, Special
Education personnel, and school officials. (See
Appendix E.)

10. If suspension will result in exclusion of more than 10


days in a school year, immediate written notification
of the suspension and request for approval of an
alternative plan must be made to the Special
Education Department with a copy to the student's
parents.

11. Except in the case of expulsion, discipline records will


be stored separately from the student’s transcript
record. If a student is expelled from school, an entry
will be made on his/her permanent record.

Expulsion Procedures
Hamilton-Wenham Regional High School will follow MGL
Chapter 71; Section 37H regarding student expulsion.
Any student who is charged with possession of
weapons/controlled substances or assault on a faculty or
staff member shall be notified in writing of an
opportunity for a hearing. The student may have
representation at this hearing, along with the
opportunity to present evidence and witnesses before
the principal.

Any student who has been expelled from a school


district as outlined in these provisions shall have the
right to appeal to the Superintendent. The expelled
student shall have ten days from the date of the
expulsion to notify the Superintendent of the appeal.
The student has the right to counsel at a hearing before
the Superintendent. The appeal shall not be limited
solely to a factual determination of whether the student
has violated any provisions of this section.

When a student is expelled under the provisions of this


section, no school district in the Commonwealth shall be
required to admit him or provide educational services to
the student. If the student does apply for admission to
another school or school district, the Superintendent of

64
this district shall notify the Superintendent of the new
school district of the reasons for the expulsion.

The Principal may suspend a student upon the issuance


of a criminal complaint charging a student with a felony
or upon the issuance of a felony delinquency complaint
against a student if the Principal believes that the
student's continued presence in school would have a
detrimental effect on the general welfare of the school.
The student will be provided written notification of the
charges and the reasons for the suspension prior to the
implementation of the suspension. The student may
appeal the suspension to the Superintendent within five
calendar days following the effective date of the
suspension. The Superintendent shall hold a hearing
with the student and the student's parent or guardian
within three calendar days of the request for appeal. At
the hearing the student shall have the right to present
oral and written testimony on his behalf and shall have
the right to counsel. The Superintendent shall issue a
decision within five calendar days of the hearing. The
Superintendent's decision shall be final and binding.
(MGL Chapter 71, Section 37H ½)

Upon the conviction of a felony or upon an adjudication


in court or admission in court of guilt with respect to
such a felony or felony delinquency, the Principal may
expel said student if the Principal believes that the
student's continued presence in the school would have a
substantial detrimental effect on the general welfare of
the school. The student prior to the effective date of the
expulsion will be provided written notification of the
charges and reasons for the expulsion. The student shall
receive written notification of his right to appeal the
expulsion to the Superintendent within five calendar
days following the effective date of the expulsion. The
Superintendent shall hold a hearing with the student and
the student's parent or guardian within three calendar
days of the request for appeal. At the hearing the
student shall have the right to present oral and written
testimony on his behalf and shall have the right to
counsel. The Superintendent shall issue a decision
within five calendar days of the hearing. The

65
Superintendent's decision on the expulsion shall be final
and binding. (MGL Chapter 71, Section 37H ½)

Except for the provision of Chapter 71, Section 37H and


37H1/2, in which case the Principal may make a decision
regarding expulsion, only the School Committee may
exclude a student for other infractions (MGL Chapter 76,
Section 17). The School Committee must provide a
hearing for a student and his or her parents before the
student is excluded for the alleged misconduct. At such
a hearing, the student is entitled to the following
procedural rights:

Written notice of the charges (in the student’s primary


language);
- The right to be represented by a lawyer or
advocate (at the student's expense);
- Adequate time to prepare for the hearing;
- Access to documented evidence before
the hearing;
- The right to request that witnesses attend
the hearing, and to question witnesses;
- A reasonably prompt, written decision
including specific grounds for the
decision

66
APPENDIX A: MASSACHUSETTS GENERAL
LAWS CHAPTER 269 CRIMES AGAINST
PUBLIC PEACE

CH. 269. S.17. CRIME OF HAZING; DEFINITION; PENALTY


Whoever is a principal organizer or participant in the
crime of hazing, as defined herein, shall be punished by
a fine of not more than three thousand dollars or by
imprisonment in a house of correction for not more than
one year, or both such fine and imprisonment.

The term "hazing" as used in this section and in sections


eighteen and nineteen, shall mean any conduct or
method of initiation into any student organization,
whether on public or private property, which willfully or
recklessly endangers the physical or mental health of
any student or other person. Such conduct shall include
whipping, beating, branding, forced calisthenics,
exposure to the weather, forced consumption of any
food, liquor, beverage, drug or other substance, or any
other brutal treatment or forced physical activity which
is likely to adversely affect the physical health or safety
of any such student or other person, or which subjects
such student or other person to extreme mental stress,
including extended deprivation of sleep or rest or
extended isolation.

67
Notwithstanding any other provisions of this section to
the contrary, consent shall not be available as a defense
to any prosecution under this action. Added by St.1985,
c.536; amended by St.1987, c.665.

CH. 269. S.18. DUTY TO REPORT HAZING


Whoever knows that another person is the victim of
hazing as defined in section seventeen and is at the
scene of such crime shall, to the extent that such person
can do so without danger or peril to himself or others,
report such crime to an appropriate law enforcement
official as soon as reasonably practicable. Whoever fails
to report such crime shall be punished by a fine of not
more than one thousand dollars. Added by St.1985,
c.536; amended by St. 1987, c.665.

CH. 269, S.19. HAZING STATUTES TO BE PROVIDED;


STATEMENT OF COMPLIANCE AND DISCIPLINE POLICY
REQUIRED
Each institution of secondary education and each public
and private institution of post secondary education shall
issue to every student group, student team or student
organization which is part of such institution or is
recognized by the institution or permitted by the
institution to use its name or facilities or is known by the
institution to exist as an unaffiliated student group,
student team or student organization, a copy of this
section and sections seventeen and eighteen; provided,
however, that an institution's compliance with this
section's requirements that an institution issue copies of
this section and sections seventeen and eighteen to
unaffiliated student groups, teams or organizations shall
not constitute evidence of the institution's recognition or
endorsement of said unaffiliated student groups, teams
or organizations.

Each such group team or organization shall distribute a


copy of this section and sections seventeen and
eighteen to each of its members, plebes, pledges or
applicants for membership. It shall be the duty of each
such group, team or organization, acting through its
designated officer, to deliver annually, to the institution
an attested acknowledgment stating that such group,

68
team or organization has received a copy of this section
and said sections seventeen and eighteen, that each of
its members, plebes, pledges, or applicants has received
a copy of sections seventeen and eighteen, and that
such group, team or organization understands and
agrees to comply with the provisions of this section and
sections seventeen and eighteen.

Each institution of secondary education and each public


or private institution of post secondary education shall,
at least annually, before or at the start of enrollment,
deliver to each person who enrolls as a full time student
in such institution a copy of this section and sections
seventeen and eighteen.
Each institution of secondary education and each public
or private institution of post secondary education shall
file, at least annually, a report with the regents of higher
education and in the case of secondary schools, the
board of education, certifying that such institution has
complied with its responsibility to inform student groups,
teams or organizations and to notify each full time
student enrolled by it of the provisions of this section
and sections seventeen and eighteen and also certifying
that said institution has adopted a disciplinary policy
with regard to the organizers and participants of hazing,
and that such policy has been set forth with appropriate
emphasis in the student handbook or similar means of
communicating the institution's policies to its students.
The board of regents and in the case of secondary
institutions, the board of education shall promulgate
regulations governing the content and frequency of such
reports, and shall forthwith report to the attorney
general any such institution which fails to make such
report. Added by St.1985, c.536; amended by St.1987,
c.665.

69
APPENDIX B: HARASSMENT PREVENTION AND
RESPONSE
I. Policy Preamble: The Hamilton-Wenham Regional
School District School Committee is committed to the
prevention of harassment based upon sex, race, color,
national origin, religion, age, disability or sexual
orientation. This policy has been developed to ensure
that the educational opportunities of all students, and
the employment conditions of all employees, are not
threatened or limited by such harassment, and to ensure
that individuals are free to work, learn, and develop
relationships without fear of intimidation, humiliation or
degradation.

This policy defines: unlawful and prohibited conduct;


reporting and investigation procedures; and disciplinary
sanctions.

It shall be a violation of this policy for any employee or


student of the Hamilton-Wenham Regional School
District to harass another employee, adult member of
the school community, student, applicant for
employment or other person with business to conduct
with the Hamilton-Wenham Regional School District,
through conduct and communications as defined below.
It shall also be a violation of this policy for students to

70
harass other students or staff through conduct or
communications of a harassing nature as defined below.

II. Unlawful and Prohibited Conduct Defined:


Unlawful and prohibited conduct includes, but is not
limited to, actions which are related to a person's
sex/gender, race, color, national origin, religion, age,
disability or sexual orientation when such actions are
unwelcome and unsolicited by the recipient.

Harassment based on a person's race, color, national


origin, religion, age, disability or sexual orientation
consists of conduct that:

1. Has the purpose or effect of creating an intimidating,


hostile, humiliating, or offensive work or education
environment;
2. has the purpose of substantially or unreasonably
interfering with a person's work or academic
performance;

3. or otherwise adversely affects a person's academic


standing or employment opportunities.

III. Sexual/Gender Harassment: Unlawful and


prohibited conduct, consisting of unwelcome sexual
advances, requests for sexual favors, sexually motivated
physical contact, or other verbal or physical conduct, or
communication of a sexual nature when:

1. submission to, or rejection of, such conduct or


communication is made explicitly or implicitly a term
or condition of employment, or education or
academic achievement;

2. or, submission to, or rejection of, such behavior is


used as a basis for employment or academic
decisions;

3. or, such behavior unreasonably interferes with an


individual's work or academic performance, or

71
creates an intimidating, hostile, humiliating, or
offensive work or educational environment.

Examples of prohibited behaviors regarding sex,


gender, race, color, national origin, religion, age,
disability, or sexual orientation shall include, but
not be limited to, the following examples:

-Verbal conduct: name calling, teasing, jokes or other


derogatory or dehumanizing remarks, by an individual or
group as in verbal bullying;
-Physical contact: unwelcome touching of a person or
person's clothing or any other act of physical
intimidation or bullying;
-Written conduct: notes, cartoons, calendars, graffiti,
offensive or graphic posters, pictures, book covers,
drawings, computer terminal messages or electronic
mail (email) of an offensive nature, or designs on
clothing meant to offend another on the basis of gender,
race, color, national origin, age, disability, sex or sexual
orientation or other identifying characteristics;
-Visual conduct: suggestive looks, leering, gesturing
of a suggestive nature;
-Blackmail: as in behavior with the intention to control
another individual's scholastic achievement or
employment status;

The foregoing list was to provide some concrete


examples, but is not meant to be all-inclusive.

IV. Responsibilities: All students, teachers,


administrators, and other personnel of the Hamilton-
Wenham Regional School District are responsible for
creating and maintaining an environment that is free of
harassment and other offensive behaviors and for
conducting themselves in a manner consistent with the
spirit and intent of this policy and in cooperating with
any investigation of alleged harassment.

The subject of harassment should report alleged


violations of this policy to the appropriate
personnel in accordance with the guidelines and

72
procedures that accompany this policy. What one
person might consider as acceptable behavior
may be viewed by another as harassment. It is,
therefore, suggested that a person make clear to
the harasser that the behavior is offensive and
must cease.

The Hamilton-Wenham Regional School District is


responsible for the dissemination of this policy and
training. The school district responsibilities will ensure
that::
1. This policy shall be conspicuously posted throughout
each school building in areas accessible to students
and staff;
2. This policy shall appear in staff and student
handbooks;
3. The school district will develop a method of
discussing this policy with students and employees;
4. The district will appropriately train administrators
and others who are assigned and responsible to
implement the procedures of this policy;
5. This policy will be reviewed every two years for
compliance with state and federal law.

V. Reporting Harassment:
A. Students: Students who believe that they are
victims of harassment should report such occurrences to
a teacher, counselor, or administrator who will in turn
notify a complaint manager, or students may report
directly to complaint managers. Notice of each school's
complaint managers, whose role is defined below, will be
posted in a prominent location in each school.

B. Employees: All Hamilton-Wenham Regional School


District employees must respond to a student's
complaints of harassment by notifying the building
principal or appointed complaint managers. In a case
where a student complains of harassment by a teacher
or another school department employee, a building
administrator and/or his/her designee must investigate
the complaint. All student complaints of harassment,

73
including sexual harassment, must always be taken
seriously.

Employees who believe that they are victims of


harassment should report such occurrences to the most
appropriate of the following potential complaint
managers: their immediate or system-wide supervisor,
the school building principal, a district administrator, or
the Superintendent of Schools, or his/her designee.

VI. Investigation and Corrective Action:


The Hamilton-Wenham Regional School District will
investigate all complaints of harassment. Such
investigation may include discussions with all involved
parties, identification and questioning of witnesses, and
other appropriate actions. Reports of sexual harassment
and related information will be kept confidential to the
extent consistent with the school's obligations under
law.

Each building principal will appoint two or more


complaint managers, at least one of each gender, where
possible. The complaint manager shall be responsible
for investigating complaints of harassment,
communicating the investigatory findings to the Hearing
Officer, and recommending discipline as a consequence
of harassment.

In a case between a student and an adult, the building


principal or another building administrator will act as the
complaint manager. In a case involving two or more
employees, a building administrator and/or his/her
designee will assume the role of the complaint manager.
In a case involving a building administrator, a principal,
or a district administrator, the Superintendent of
Schools, or his/her designee, will act as a complaint
manager.

Complaint managers will attend training sessions and


workshops as directed. Notice of each school's
complaint managers will be posted in a prominent
location in each school.

74
If the Hamilton-Wenham Regional School District
determines that harassment has occurred, it will take
appropriate action to end the harassment. Steps that
may be taken include, among others, an apology,
direction to stop the offensive behavior, counseling or
training, warnings, suspensions, exclusion from school-
related activities, transfer, remediation, expulsion from
schools or termination from employment.

Disciplinary action will be consistent with the


requirements of applicable collective bargaining
agreements, Massachusetts and federal laws, and school
district policies. Any staff member or student who is
dissatisfied with the results or progress of the school's
investigation may discuss his/her dissatisfaction directly
with the building principal or the Superintendent of
Schools, or his/her designee, at the District
Administration Building, 5 School Street, Wenham, MA
01984, (978- 468-1530)

VII. Retaliation:
The school administration will discipline or take
appropriate action against any student, teacher,
administrator, or school personnel who retaliates in any
form against a person who makes a complaint or reports
or participates in an investigation of a harassment
complaint. Acts of retaliation may result in immediate
disciplinary action up to and including expulsion or
dismissal, even if underlying harassment is not proven.
Retaliation is an independent prohibited and unlawful
act.

VIII. Investigation of Child Abuse:


Under certain circumstances, harassment of a student
may constitute child abuse under Massachusetts Law,
M.G.L. Ch. 119, Section 51A. The Hamilton-Wenham
Regional School District will comply with Massachusetts
Law in reporting suspected cases of child abuse. The
Hamilton-Wenham Regional School District will report
suspected criminal activity to the local police.

75
IX. Right to Alternative Complaint Procedures:
These procedures do not deny the right of any individual
to pursue other avenues of recourse which may include
filing charges with the Massachusetts Department of
Education, 350 Main Street, Malden, MA 02148, (781-
338-3100); Massachusetts Commission Against
Discrimination, Boston Office, One Ashburton Place,
Boston, MA 02108, (617-994-6000); Equal Employment
Opportunity Commission, J.F.K Federal Building, 475
Government Center, Boston, MA 02203, (617-565-3200);
and the Office of Civil Rights of the U.S. Department of
Education, J.W. McCormack Post Office and Courthouse,
Room 707, Boston, MA 02109, (617-223-9662); initiating
civil action or seeking redress under criminal statutes
and/or federal law.

X. Policy Review and Revision


This policy and its procedures will be reviewed every two
years for compliance with state and federal law. Review
and revision of these policies and procedures shall occur
as needed, but at least every two years.

XI. Legal References:

Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964


Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972
Massachusetts General Laws:
c.151B (prohibiting employment discrimination based on
gender);
c.214 s.1C (right to be free from sexual harassment);
c.76 s.5 (prohibiting educational discrimination
in public schools);
c.265 s.43 (prohibiting stalking);
c.269 s.17 (prohibiting hazing);
c.119, s.51A (reporting of suspected child abuse);
Other relevant statutes and case law
First Reading: December 5, 2002
Second Reading & Adoption: December 19, 2002
Approved: December 19, 2002 Vote: 9 to 0
Chairman, HWRSD School Committee (Signature on File)
(Revised Policy - 12.19.02)

76
I. COMPLAINT PROCEDURE FOR STUDENT-TO-
STUDENT HARASSMENT
Any student who believes that she or he has been
harassed by another student or an adult, or has
knowledge or belief of conduct which occurred that
might be harassment, should speak to or send a note to
any school personnel she/he trusts, (e.g. teacher, nurse,
counselor, member of the sexual harassment
committee, Principal), or she/he should tell her/his
parents who then should notify school personnel. The
procedure begins when school personnel have been
notified.

School personnel must document the reported incident


in writing and give it to the Principal within one working
day of being notified. The Principal is responsible for
investigating the situation and reporting any and all
complaints of harassment to the Title IX Coordinator,
Deborah Frontierro, Director of Special Education,
Hamilton–Wenham Regional School District Office, 5
School Street, Wenham, MA, 01984.

Upon receipt of an allegation of harassment, the


Principal will take immediate steps to halt or prevent any
behavior which may be construed as harassment.
Complaints of harassment should be initiated as soon as
possible, but certainly within six months of the incident.
Information provided under these harassment
procedures will be treated as confidential to the extent
permitted by law. This means that such information will
be shared with others on a need-to-know basis only. In
general, it is the District’s policy to let parents know of
the concerns.
School authorities will not allow anyone to retaliate
against any person because she or he complains of
harassment or assists in an investigation of harassment.
Intimidation, coercion or any other attempt to interfere
with an investigation of harassment will not be tolerated.

The student who makes the complaint about harassment


is called the “complainant.” The person accused of

77
harassment must respond to the complaint and is called
the “respondent.”

II. INFORMAL PROCEDURE


It may be possible to resolve an offensive situation
informally without an extensive and involved
investigation. In each school, the Principal (complaint
manager) has been designated as a Title IX Investigator
to assist in harassment investigations. However, at any
time, the complainant may request a formal
investigation by the Title IX Coordinator, Deborah
Frontierro, or by the Superintendent. Based on the
seriousness of the charge, the Principal may decide that
a formal investigation is most appropriate to address the
issues. If the Informal Procedure is used, the Principal
will document the steps taken under this Informal
Procedure.

The Principal may conduct the Informal Procedure in a


variety of ways. Here are some examples:
- If the complainant agrees, the Principal may
facilitate a conversation between the two parties
where the complainant may tell the respondent that
the behavior is offensive and must stop.
- If the complainant agrees, the Principal may assist
the complainant in writing a letter to the respondent
saying that the behavior is offensive and must stop.
- The Principal may have separate conversations
with the complainant and the respondent.

Examples of possible resolutions are:


- Verbal statements of apology
- Letters of apology
- Assurances that the offensive behavior will end
- Disciplinary action

The Informal Procedure will be completed within five (5)


school days. Within this time, the Principal will notify all
involved parties of the results of the informal process.
Resolution of the situation may or may not occur as a
result of the informal process. If all the parties involved
in this informal process feel that a resolution has been

78
achieved, this discussion will remain confidential and no
further action will be taken, except that the Principal will
report to the Title IX Coordinator and the
Superintendent. If any party feels that resolution has
not been achieved, participants will engage in the
following formal procedure.

B. FORMAL PROCEDURE
A formal investigation is initiated when any one of the
following three criteria is met:

- Any of the parties involved requests the formal


procedure.
- The Principal requests the formal procedure due to
the seriousness of the allegations or repeated
behavior.
- Any one of the parties feels that the informal
procedure was either inadequate or unsuccessful.

The formal procedure will be completed within ten (10)


school days. Investigative deadlines may be extended
under extenuating circumstances such as illness or an
excessive number of individuals to interview. During
this time the Principal will provide the Title IX
Coordinator with written documentation of the
allegations with sufficient detail for a formal
investigation. The Title IX Coordinator will review the
written documentation, conduct an investigation of this
complaint, and prepare a written report.

The Title IX Coordinator’s report must contain the


following information:

- All facts and circumstances of the incident. Also


verification of parent/guardian notification if a student
under 18 years of age is involved.

- A summary of the investigation of all allegations which


will include interviews with all individuals reasonably
believed to have relevant information: the complainant,
the respondent and, if either is under the age of 18, their
parents (if appropriate), witnesses, and anyone else who

79
may have been the victim of similar conduct by the
same respondent.

- A description of any actions already taken and/or


proposed by the Principal.

Copies of this written report, including the decision of


the Title IX Coordinator, and the rationale and
documentation of it will be forwarded to each of the
parties involved within five (5) school days of the
completion of the investigation. All documentation of
harassment complaints will be kept on file with the Title
IX Coordinator in the central administrative office.

III. FORMAL PROCEDURE FOR STUDENT/ADULT


HARASSMENT COMPLAINTS
The formal procedure contained in the School Personnel
Complaint Policy will be followed for student complaints
of adult harassment. The Title IX Coordinator, in
accordance with the School Personnel Complaint Policy,
will conduct the investigation.

IV. APPEALS
The complainant may appeal the decision of the Title IX
Coordinator to the Superintendent within (15) school
days of receipt of the written decision. The decision of
the Title IX Coordinator will be reviewed to ensure the
adequacy of the investigation and the conclusions. The
parties will be given an opportunity to submit additional
relevant information to the Superintendent. The
Superintendent will make a decision and provide it in
writing to the involved parties within (30) school days of
the appeal.
V. OTHER RESOURCES
Individuals also have the right to seek a remedy from
these anti-discrimination enforcement agencies:

Employees may also contact:


U.S. Department of Education, Office for Civil Rights
John W. McCormack Building and Courthouse, Room 707

80
Post Office Square, Boston, MA 02109 (617) 223-
9662

Equal Employment Opportunity Commission


J.F.K. Federal Building, 475 Government Center
Boston, MA 02203 (617) 565-3200

Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination


1 Ashburton Place, Boston, MA 02108 (617)994-
6000

APPENDIX C: TECHNOLOGYACCEPTABLE USE


POLICY

I. Policy

A. Purpose
The purpose of the Hamilton-Wenham Regional School
District (HWRSD) network and technology resources is to

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prepare students for success in life and work by
providing access to a wide range of information and the
ability to communicate with others. The network and
technology resources will be used to increase
communication (staff, parent, and student), enhance
productivity, and assist staff and students in
constructing learning environments, upgrading existing
skills and acquiring new skills through a broader
exchange of information. In order to accomplish this
mission the HWRSD establishes this Acceptable Use
Policy for current and future technologies.

B. Availability

Access to the network is a privilege, not a right. Prior to


accessing the network all users shall be required to
acknowledge receipt and understanding of all
administrative regulations and procedures governing use
of the system and shall agree in writing to comply with
such regulations and procedures. Noncompliance with
applicable regulations and procedures may result in
suspension or termination of user privileges and/or other
disciplinary actions consistent with the policies of
HWRSD. Violations of law may result in criminal
prosecution as well as disciplinary action by the HWRSD.

C. Acceptable Use

The Superintendent or designees shall develop and


implement administrative regulations, procedures, and
user agreements consistent with the purposes and
mission of the HWRSD as well as with law and policy
governing copyright.

D. Monitored Use

The Superintendent or designees shall implement,


monitor, and evaluate the district's network and
technology resources for instructional and administrative
purposes. Access to the system/network, including
external networks, shall be made available to employees
and students for instructional and administrative
purposes only in accordance with administrative

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regulations and procedures. As a condition of use, staff
and students waive any right to privacy in anything they
create, store, send, disseminate or receive via the
district’s technology.

The HWRSD has the authority and the right but not the
duty to monitor all aspects of its technology, including,
but not limited to, monitoring computer and Internet
activity of any system user.

Electronic mail transmissions and other uses of


electronic resources by students and employees shall
not be considered confidential and may be monitored at
any time by designated staff to ensure appropriate use
for instructional and administrative purposes. Under the
Public Records Law electronic mail transmissions and
other uses of electronic resources by district employees
may be considered public records.

Internet activities will be monitored by school personnel


to ensure users are not accessing inappropriate
(obscene, profane, lewd, vulgar, rude, inflammatory,
threatening or disrespectful) sites.

E. Liability

The HWRSD shall not be liable for users' inappropriate


use of electronic resources or violations of copyright
restrictions, users' mistakes or negligence, or costs
incurred by users. The Hamilton-Wenham Regional
School District is not responsible for losses or illegal
tampering sustained by users of the computer networks,
including loss of data or interruption of service. It is
highly recommended that the user make a backup copy
of all information. The HWRSD shall not be responsible
for ensuring the accuracy or usability of any information
found on external networks.

F. Administrative Regulations and Procedures

1. The district will provide each user a copy of the


Acceptable Use Policy and Administrative
Regulations and Procedures.

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2. Access will be granted to employees with a signed
access agreement and permission of their supervisor.
3. Access will be granted to students with a signed
access agreement and permission of the building
administrator or designees.
4. Passwords shall be changed a minimum of once a
year.
5. Passwords are confidential. All passwords shall be
protected by the user and not shared or displayed.
6. Principals or their designees will be responsible for
disseminating and enforcing policies and procedures
in the building(s) under their control.
7. Principals or their designees will ensure that all users
complete and sign an agreement to abide by policies
and procedures regarding use of the system/network.
All such agreements are to be maintained at the
building level.
8. Principals or their designees shall be authorized to
monitor or examine all system activities, including
electronic mail transmissions, as deemed appropriate
to ensure proper use of electronic resources.
9. Individual users shall, at all times, be responsible for
the proper use of accounts issued in their name.
10. System users shall not use another user's account.
11. The system/network may not be used for illegal
purposes, in support of illegal activities, or for any
activity prohibited by district policy.
12. Commercial use of the system/network is prohibited.
13. The school’s plagiarism policy applies to electronic
materials found on the Internet.
14. System users may redistribute copyrighted/fair use
material only in accordance with applicable
copyright/fair use laws, district policy, and
administrative procedures.
15. System users may request that the technology staff
upload/download public domain programs to the
system/network. Technology staff is responsible for
determining if a program is in the public domain.
16. Copyrighted software or data shall not be installed on
the district system/network without permission from
the holder of the copyright and the technology staff.
Users are not permitted to install software not
licensed to the district.

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17. System users are not permitted to download
executable software files such as Mp3 or music files,
video files, QuickTime movie trailers, Instant
Messenger Software, games, etc. unless justified and
approved by the technology staff.
18. Adding unauthorized computers, servers or other
devices to the network is prohibited. This does not
include devices used temporarily to offload personal
files.
19. Instant messaging and other similar devices may
only be used for approved personal use or
educational purposes.
20. Student use of personal technologies, such as cell
phones, iPods, or MP3 players, may only be used for
approved personal use or educational purposes.
21. Any attempt to alter, harm or destroy equipment,
materials, data, or programs is prohibited.
22. Deliberate attempts to degrade or disrupt system
performance may be viewed as violations of district
policy and/or as criminal activity under applicable
state and federal laws. This includes, but is not
limited to, the uploading or creation of malware.
23. Vandalism such as knowingly transferring any type of
malware or destroying other people’s computer files
on school technology may result in the cancellation
of system privileges and will require restitution for
costs associated with hardware, software, and
system restoration.
24. Attempts to read, delete, copy, or modify the
electronic mail of other users or to interfere with the
ability of other users to send/receive electronic mail
is prohibited.
25. Posting, transmitting or viewing inappropriate
(obscene, profane, lewd, vulgar, rude, inflammatory,
threatening or disrespectful) language or material is
prohibited.
26. System users will not use the network/system to
harass another person. If users are asked by a
person to stop sending them messages, they must
stop.
27. System users will not knowingly or recklessly post
personal attacks, including prejudicial or
discriminatory attacks, false or defamatory

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information about a person or organization on the
network/system.
28. Pretending to be someone else when
sending/receiving message is prohibited.
29. Revealing another person’s personal information
(addresses, phone numbers, etc.) or accessing
personal information sites is prohibited.
30. System users must immediately notify the
technology staff or designees, if they have identified
a possible security problem.
31. If a system user mistakenly accesses inappropriate
information, he/she should immediately notify the
technology staff or designees.

The District reserves the right to deny, revoke, or


suspend specific user privileges and/or to take other
disciplinary action, including suspension or expulsion
from school, for violations of this policy. Additionally, all
handbook regulations apply to the use of the Hamilton-
Wenham Regional School District network and
technologies. In the event that there is a claim that a
student/staff person has violated any of the guidelines in
this policy, the student/staff person will be provided with
notice of the suspected violation and an opportunity to
be heard. The District will advise appropriate law
enforcement agencies of illegal activities conducted
through the Hamilton-Wenham Regional School District
network and technologies. The district will cooperate
fully with local, state, or federal officials in any
investigation concerning or relating to misuse of the
district's network and technology resources.

II. Policy Review and Revision

This policy and its procedures will be reviewed every two


years for compliance with state and federal law. Review
and revision of these policies and procedures shall occur
as needed, but at least every two years.

III. Legal References

Title 17 U.S. Copyright law


Massachusetts General Laws:

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c.66 s.10 (public records)
c.71 s.37h1/2 (felony complaint or conviction of student)
c.76 s.5 (prohibiting educational discrimination in public
schools)
c.214 s.1c (right to be free from sexual harassment)
c.265 s.43 (prohibiting stalking)
c.266s.37e (use of personal identification of another)
c.266 s.98 (schoolhouse defacement)
c.266 s.120f (unauthorized access to computer system)
c.266 s.127 (personal property malicious or wanton
injury)
c.266 s.143a (unauthorized reproduction or transfer of
sound recordings)
c.269 s.17 (prohibiting hazing)

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APPENDIX D: DISCIPLINE POLICY AND
PROCEDURES FOR STUDENTS WITH
DISABILITIES

HAMILTON-WENHAM REGIONAL SCHOOL DISTRICT


DEPARTMENT OF SPECIAL EDUCATION
The Individualized Education Program (IEP) of each
student with a disability who has been found eligible for
special education and/or related services indicates
whether that student is expected to follow the regular
discipline code for his/her school and, if not, how the
discipline code will be modified. In addition, M.G.L.
c.71B §3 and the Individuals with Disabilities Education
Act and related regulations require that additional
provisions be made for students who have been found
eligible for special education services, or who the District
knows or has reason to know might be eligible for such
services. Students who have been found to have a
disability that substantially limits a major life activity, as
defined under §504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973,
must also be afforded these increased procedural
protections prior to imposing a disciplinary sanction that
will result in the student’s removal from his/her
educational program for more than ten (10) school days
in a given school year.

To the extent that removal for violation of the school’s


disciplinary code/code of conduct would be applied to
students without disabilities, District administrators may
remove a student with a disability from his/her
educational program for up to ten (10) school days in a
given school year. However, when a student with a
disability is removed or excluded from his/her current
educational program for more than ten (10) consecutive
school days in a given year or has been subjected to a
pattern of short term removals totaling more than ten
(10) school days, a change in placement will be deemed
to have occurred, triggering the District’s procedural
obligations under federal law. It is the policy of the
Hamilton-Wenham Regional School District to respond to
repeated disciplinary episodes involving special needs
students on a proactive basis and, whenever possible, to

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reconvene the Team well before the limit of ten (10)
days out of school has been reached.

General Guidelines for Disciplining Students with Disabilities


• The procedural requirements for disciplining students
with disabilities are in addition to those due process
protections afforded to all students. These basic due
process requirements include notifying the Student
of the disciplinary violation and providing him/her
with either a formal or informal hearing prior to
imposing a disciplinary sanction.
• For purposes of this policy, the term “student with a
disability” includes all students currently receiving
services pursuant to an IEP, all students who the
District knows or has reason to know might be
eligible for special education services, and all
students receiving individualized accommodations
pursuant to a §504 Accommodation Plan.
• Any suspensions or removals of students with
disabilities shall be documented in writing.
• A letter describing the disciplinary offense and the
resulting consequences should be sent to the
parent(s)/guardian(s) and/or student and a copy
forwarded to the Special Education Coordinator prior
to imposing any sanction, if practicable.
• The Special Education Coordinator and the Assistant
Principal shall monitor the number of suspension
days imposed (including in-house suspensions).
• If a disciplinary action is contemplated that will result
in a student’s removal for more than ten (10) school
days, the parents and student must be immediately
notified in writing and provided with written notice of
their rights
• Although not specifically required by law, District
policy requires that a student’s Team reconvene
once a student had been suspended for six (6) or
more days in a single school year.
• As students with disabilities cannot generally be
subjected to long-term removal (more than ten (10)
school days) for conduct related to their disability,
the student’s Team shall perform the Manifestation
Determination before a hearing to consider the

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student’s long-term exclusion (more than ten (10)
consecutive days) is conducted.

MANIFESTATION DETERMINATIONS
1. Within ten (10) days of first considering
any disciplinary action that would result in a change
of placement, building administrators, the parents,
and relevant IEP or 504 Team members (“MD Team”)
must convene to conduct a Manifestation
Determination. The parents and/or student (if 18 or
over) must be given prior written notice of this
meeting.
2. At the Manifestation Determination
meeting, the MD Team shall consider all relevant
information about the student including, but not
limited to, evaluation and diagnostic results, relevant
information supplied by the parent and student,
observational data; the student’s IEP or §504 Plan,
and the student's current placement.
3. The MD Team may determine that the
behavior giving rise to discipline was a manifestation
of the student’s disability only if:
a. The conduct giving rise to disciplinary
action was caused by or directly and substantially
related to the student’s disability: or
b. The conduct giving rise to disciplinary
action was directly caused by the school’s failure to
implement the IEP or 504 Plan.
4. If the MD Team determines that the
behavior was not a manifestation of the student’s
disability, the student may be subjected to the
disciplinary procedures and consequences applicable
to all students. During any period of removal beyond
ten (10) cumulative school days, however, the
District shall provide the services determined
necessary by the Team to provide the student with a
free appropriate public education. * (Note: This
requirement is not applicable to students on §504
plans)
5. If the MD Team determines that the
behavior giving rise to the disciplinary action was a
manifestation of the student’s disability, the
disciplinary consequence (such as suspension or

90
other forms of exclusion) that would result in a
change in placement may not be applied and an
alternative course of action shall be proposed by the
student’s IEP or 504. Alternatives could include, for
example, proposing the amendment or revision of
the student’s IEP, obtaining the parents’ consent to a
change in the student's placement, or modifying the
student’s behavior plan.

Functional Behavioral Assessments


1. Immediately following any meeting to determine
whether conduct subject to disciplinary action is a
manifestation of a student’s disability, the student’s
IEP Team or 504 Team shall meet to review any
existing behavior intervention plans or to consider
whether to conduct a functional behavioral
assessment for the purpose of developing a behavior
intervention plan.
a. Where it is determined by an MD Team that the
conduct giving rise to disciplinary action was a
manifestation of the student’s disability, and the
student does not have a current behavior
intervention plan, a plan by which a functional
behavioral assessment shall be conducted.
b. Where it is determined by an MD Team that the
conduct giving rise to disciplinary action was not a
manifestation of the student’s disability, and the
student does not have a current behavior
intervention plan, the Team shall determine
whether it would be appropriate to conduct a
functional behavioral assessment.

Interim Alternative Educational Setting (IAES)


1. Generally, a student with a disability may be
placed in an IAES only upon the recommendation of
the IEP/504 Team and with the consent of the parent
(or student, if 18 years of age) or by order of a Judge
or Hearing Officer. Under certain circumstances,
however, a student may be unilaterally placed by the
District in an IAES determined to be appropriate by
the student’s Team for up to forty-five (45) school
days if the student's behavior involves any of the
following offenses:

91
a. Possession of a weapon on school grounds
or at school-sponsored events;
b. Possession or use of illegal drugs on
school grounds or at school-sponsored events;
c. Solicitation of a controlled substance on
school grounds or at school-sponsored events.
d. Causing serious bodily injury to another at
school or at a school sponsored event
2. Although the District may unilaterally remove a
student to an IAES for any of the above offenses, an
MD Team must still conduct a Manifestation
Determination within ten (10) school days of first
considering the removal of the student from his/her
current program for disciplinary reasons.
3. Where a student is believed to present a danger
to himself or others in his current educational
program, but has not engaged in the conduct
identified in Paragraph 1 of this section, the District
may only remove the student to an IAES with the
consent of the parents or student (if over 18 years of
age) or with authorization from a Bureau of Special
Education Appeals Hearing Officer or from a court of
competent jurisdiction. To obtain such an order, the
District must demonstrate that maintaining the
student’s placement is substantially likely to result in
injury to the student or others
4. The IAES shall be identified by the student’s
IEP/504 Team and must be selected so as to enable
the student to participate in the general curriculum
and to receive the special education and related
services contained in the student’s IEP in order to
progress toward the goals set forth in the IEP. The
IAES must also provide services and modifications
designed to address the behavior giving rise to the
removal and to prevent the behavior from
reoccurring.
5. At the conclusion of the forty-five (45) school day
period, the student shall be returned to his/her
previous placement unless the parents (or student if
18 years of age) consents to an extension of the IAES
or a Hearing Officer’s order is obtained authorizing
the student’s continued removal.

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Other Considerations Regarding Discipline
• The primary distinction between students on IEPs
and those on §504 plans involves disciplinary action
based on the use of drugs. Where a student on a
§504 plan is a current user of illegal drugs, the
student is not entitled to the procedural protections
identified in this policy.
• The District will be considered to know or have
reason to know that a student may be eligible for
services where:
o The parent has expressed concern in writing to
supervisory personnel, administrative personnel, or
the teacher that the student is in need of special
education and related services; or
o The student is currently undergoing an evaluation
of eligibility; or
o The student’s teacher or other District personnel
have expressed concern about the student’s
pattern of behavior directly to the Special
Education Department or other supervisory
personnel.
o Exceptions:
 If the parent(s)/guardian(s) have refused consent to an
initial evaluation or if the District has conducted an
evaluation and found the student not eligible for
special education services or accommodations on the
basis of disability, the District is not required to
provide the additional protections set forth in this
policy.
• Special education regulations do not prohibit the
District from reporting a crime to the appropriate law
enforcement authorities
• It is the policy of the Hamilton-Wenham Regional
School District that no student will be discriminated
against based upon a handicapping condition.
Therefore, disciplinary consequences which may limit
an identified special needs student's participation in,
or access to, the opportunities and activities of the
District are only imposed after careful and deliberate
consideration, consistent with applicable state and
federal laws and regulations, and within stated
guidelines, as outlined above.

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* Revised in accordance with the Individuals with
Disabilities Education Improvement Act of 2004.

94