|Policies and Procedures Handbook|
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Last Updated: 09/14/2011
Garrett County Board of Education
40 South Second Street
Oakland, MD 21550
PROHIBITION OF GANG
ACTIVITY AND SIMILAR
DESTRUCTIVE OR ILLEGAL
The Garrett County Board of Education and its schools will implement the following procedures to report, investigate, prevent, intervene, suppress, remediate and provide consequences for gang activity and similar destructive or illegal group behavior within a whole-school prevention/intervention program.
I. Reporting Suspected Gang Activity Or Similar Destructive Or Illegal Group Behavior
A. All school employees must report any incidence of suspected gang activity or similar destructive or illegal group behavior to the principal or (designated) school security officer.
B. If a student, parent or guardian, or other person tells a school employee about any suspected gang activity or similar destructive or illegal group behavior, the school employee must report that information to the principal or (designated) school security officer.
C. Reports of suspected gang activity or similar destructive or illegal group behavior must be made in writing.
D. The principal or (designated) school security officer, upon receiving the report, whether from a school employee, a student, parent, guardian or other person will complete the Gang-Related Incident Reporting Form, if it has not already been completed by the person making the request.
E. Once the reporting form is completed, the principal will initiate the appropriate investigation and report the results of that investigation on the Gang-Related Incident Investigation Form.
F. The school principal will maintain a secured central repository for the forms and gang-related activity information and will forward copies of the reporting and investigation forms to the Department of Pupil Services once completed, where a monitoring system and data base will be maintained for the school system.
G. The reporting and investigation forms and any subsequent or additional information gathered during the investigation shall not become part of the studentís permanent record.
H. Student specific gang-related records shall be destroyed when the student graduates, permanently leaves the school, or turns 22, whichever occurs first. If the allegation is unsubstantiated, the record should be destroyed immediately.
II. Information Obtained From the Police, States Attorney or Courts
A. The Superintendent will designate the Supervisor of Pupil Services as the point of contact for confidential information received from the police, States Attorney or courts regarding student arrests, dispositions and/or delinquency adjudication.
B. The information will be maintained in a secured repository by the Department of Pupil Services and school principal, and the information shall not be made a part of the studentís educational record. The information will be destroyed when the student graduates, permanently leaves school or turns 22. Any unsubstantiated allegation will be destroyed immediately.
C. A non-specific, non-student log will be maintained each year of each notification received and will provide recommendations to MSDE on ways to improve the notification process.
III. Sharing Information within the Schools
A. Through the Superintendent, the school principal and (designated) school security officer will be informed of policy and procedures for using non-student information about suspected gang activity or similar destructive or illegal group behavior to provide for school safety, including the sharing of non-student information with parents.
B. The Superintendent or school principal may transmit the information obtained regarding arrest for a reportable offense as a confidential file to the Superintendent of another public or non-public school in the State in which the student has been enrolled or transferred if the disposition of the reportable offense was a conviction or an adjudication of delinquency or the criminal charge or delinquency is still pending. (Educational Section 7-303. Arrest for Reportable offense, Annotated Code).
C. The Superintendent, principal or (designated) school security officer should share the information on arrests, dispositions and reports with school personnel to provide appropriate educational planning, and for the purpose of maintaining a safe and secure school environment for students and school staff.
D. The school principal and (designated) school security officer shall meet regularly with the school counselors and/or pupil personnel workers to share and discuss information about gang-related activity in general and to discuss the educational plans and progress of students who have been named in an accurate and reliable report of suspected gang activity or similar destructive or illegal group behavior, or have been arrested or adjudicated delinquent for gang-related activity or a reportable offense.
IV. Reporting Information to Law Enforcement and Other Agencies
A. The Superintendent and this policy and procedures require the principal or (designated) school security officer to contact the appropriate law enforcement officer whenever a report of on-going or threatened gang-related violence is accurate and reliable. This report should include the specific event and students involved and should elicit advice on intervention strategies and parent, guardian and community involvement.
B. Regular meetings will be conducted with the principal and/or (designated) school security officer of each middle and high school and representatives of law enforcement, the States Attorney, the Public Defender, gang prevention and intervention programs or other appropriate individuals to coordinate gang prevention, intervention and suppression.
V. Investigation, Consequences and/or Remedial Action
A. Upon receipt of a Gang-Related Incident Report, the principal or designee, assistant principal, and the (designated) school security officer shall initiate an investigation within 24 hours. If the report is a high level of severity, as involving criminal activity or imminent danger or disruption, the investigation shall be initiated immediately but not later than 24 hours and appropriate school system personnel shall be notified (Superintendent, Supervisor of Pupil Services).
B. Principals, assistant principals or the administrative designee shall notify the parents or guardians of the offender and/or victim of the allegation.
C. Principals, assistant principals or the administrative designee will apply consequences and/or remedial action consistent with due process rights and in accordance with COMAR 13A.08.01.11, Disciplinary Action, and 13A.08.03, Discipline of Students with Disabilities, using a range of consequences and remedial actions according to this policy and procedure, the Student Handbook Rights, Responsibilities and Discipline, and their schoolís Code of Student Conduct. Consequences and remedial actions for individuals engaged in suspected gang activity or similar destructive or illegal group behavior, or for individuals making false accusations of such should be consistently and fairly applied following a timely and appropriate investigation that determines that the offense has occurred.
D. The principal or (designated) school security officer will create a written record of the gang-related incident and the investigation using the Gang-Related Incident Investigation Form. The written record will include victim, witnesses, and offender statements, with documentation of discussions with all parties occurring as soon as possible after the event. Any material records or evidence should not be discarded while a criminal investigation or prosecution resulting from the incident is ongoing.
VI. Providing information (in conjunction with students, parents, school faculty/personnel, law enforcement, and community stakeholders) about the availability of family and student support services for students engaging in suspected gang activity or similar destructive or illegal group behavior or those ďat riskĒ may include:
A. Integrated drug and gang awareness education that shows research effectiveness and is regularly updated and reflect current trends,
B. Services and supports for parents and families that are culturally and linguistically appropriate,
C. Counseling and mentoring for students and their families,
D. Community and faith-based organizations and programs that provide support and services,
E. After-school programs developed in collaboration with other stakeholders,
F. Job training and employment opportunities, and
G. School sanctioned/facilitated extra-curricular activities.
VII. Training and Community Collaboration and Participation
A. School staff and teachers (first level responders) will be provided annual training in this policy and procedure which is regularly updated and revised and reflects current trends on gangs and gang-related activity.
B. Schools and community-based service providers will collaborate to establish formal plans to provide and coordinate resources, funding and prevention and intervention services at the school level.
C. As possible, gang resistance and education will be infused into existing curriculums and/or programs.
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Pupil Services 452.1 PEL