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District School Board of Niagara
Policy School Operations

G-08 DSBN Code of Conduct for Schools

Date Dec 2018
Review Dec 2023

District School Board of Niagara (DSBN) believes that a school should be a place that promotes responsibility, respect, civility and academic excellence in a safe learning and teaching environment. A positive school climate exists when all members of the school community feel safe, included, accepted, and agree that it is the responsibility of all individuals to actively contribute to a positive school climate.

The DSBN believes that to foster a positive school climate that supports student achievement and well-being, a focus should be on prevention and early intervention strategies to address inappropriate behaviour. These standards of behaviour apply whether on school property, on school busses, or other transportation means supplied by DSBN, at school-related events or activities or in any other circumstance that could have an impact on the school climate.

The provincial Code of Conduct outlined in PPM 128, revised October 17, 2018, sets clear provincial standards of behaviour.

All DSBN schools will have a link to policy G-08: Code of Conduct for Schools on their website and if applicable, in their school agendas.

PURPOSES OF THE CODE

Subsection 301(1) of Part XIII of the Education Act states that “the Minister may establish a code of conduct governing the behaviour of all persons in schools”. Subsection 301(2) sets out the purposes of this provincial code of conduct, as follows:

  1. To ensure that all members of the school community, especially people in positions of authority, are treated with respect and dignity
  2. To promote responsible citizenship by encouraging appropriate participation in the civic life of the school community
  3. To maintain an environment where conflict and difference can be addressed in a manner characterized by respect and civility
  4. To encourage the use of non-violent means to resolve conflict
  5. To promote the safety of people in the schools
  6. To discourage the use of alcohol, illegal drugs and, except by a medical cannabis user, cannabis
  7. To prevent bullying in schools

STANDARDS OF BEHAVIOUR

Respect, Civility, and Responsible Citizenship
All members of the school community must:

  • Respect and comply with all applicable federal, provincial, and municipal laws
  • Demonstrate honesty and integrity
  • Respect differences in people, their ideas, and their opinions
  • Treat one another with dignity and respect at all times, and especially when there is disagreement
  • Respect and treat others fairly, regardless of race, ancestry, place of origin, colour, ethnic origin, citizenship, creed, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, age, marital status, family status, or disability
  • Respect the rights of others
  • Show proper care and regard for school property and the property of others
  • Take appropriate measures to help those in need
  • Seek assistance from a member of the school staff, if necessary, to resolve conflict peacefully
  • Respect all members of the school community, especially persons in positions of authority
  • Respect the need of others to work in an environment that is conducive to learning and teaching
  • Not swear at a teacher or at another person in a position of authority

Safety
All members of the school community must not:

  • Engage in bullying behaviours
  • Commit sexual assault
  • Traffic in weapons or illegal drugs
  • Give alcohol or cannabis to a minor
  • Commit robbery
  • Be in possession of any weapon, including firearms
  • Use any object to threaten or intimidate another person
  • Cause injury to any person with an object
  • Be in possession of, or be under the influence of alcohol, cannabis (unless the individual has been authorized to use cannabis for medical purposes), and illegal drugs
  • Provide others with alcohol, illegal drugs, or cannabis (unless the recipient is an individual who has been authorized to use cannabis for medical purposes)
  • Inflict or encourage others to inflict bodily harm on another person
  • Engage in hate propaganda and other forms of behaviour motivated by hate or bias
  • Commit an act of vandalism that causes extensive damage to school property or to property located on the premises of the school

According to PPM 128, the following responsibilities are outlined to support a collaborative ownership of the code of conduct.

School Administrators

Under the direction of DSBN, school administrators take a leadership role in the daily operation of a school. They provide this leadership by:

  • Demonstrating care for the school community and a commitment to student achievement and well-being in a safe, inclusive, and accepting learning environment
  • Holding everyone under their authority accountable for their own behaviour and actions
  • Empowering students to be positive leaders in their school and community
  • Communicating regularly and meaningfully with all members of their school community

Teachers and Other School Staff

Under the leadership of their principals, teachers and other school staff maintain a positive learning environment and are expected to hold everyone to the highest standard of respectful and responsible behaviour. As role models, teachers and other school staff uphold these high standards when they:

  • Help students work to their full potential and develop their sense of self-worth
  • Empower students to be positive leaders in their classroom, school, and community
  • Communicate regularly and meaningfully with parents
  • Maintain consistent and fair standards of behaviour for all students
  • Demonstrate respect for one another, all students, parents, volunteers, and other members of the school community
  • Prepare students for the full responsibilities of citizenship

Students

Students are to be treated with respect and dignity. In return, they must demonstrate respect for themselves, for others, and for the responsibilities of citizenship through acceptable behaviour. Respect and responsibility are demonstrated when students:

  • Come to school prepared, on time, and ready to learn
  • Show respect for themselves, and for others, and for those in positions of authority
  • Refrain from bringing anything to school that may compromise the safety of others
  • Follow the established rules and take responsibility for their own actions

Parents/Guardians

Parents/Guardians play an important role in the education of their children and can support the efforts of school staff in maintaining a safe, inclusive accepting, and respectful learning environment for all students. Parents/Guardians fulfill their role when they:

  • Are engaged in their child’s schoolwork and progress
  • Communicate regularly with the school
  • Help their child be appropriately dressed and prepared for school
  • Ensure that their child attends school regularly and on time
  • Promptly report to the school their child’s absence or late arrival
  • Become familiar with the provincial Code of Conduct, the DSBN Code of Conduct, and, if applicable, the school’s Code of Conduct
  • Encourage and assist their child in following the rules of behaviour
  • Assist school staff in dealing with disciplinary issues involving their child

Community Partners

Through outreach, existing partnerships may be enhanced and new partnerships with community-based service providers and members of the community (e.g., Elders, Senators, Knowledge Keepers) may also be created. Community-based service providers and resources that boards can use to deliver prevention or intervention programs. Protocols are effective ways of establishing linkages between boards and community-based service providers and of formalizing the relationship between them. These partnerships must respect all applicable collective agreements.

Police

The police play an essential role in making our schools and communities safer. The police investigate incidents in accordance with the protocol developed with the DSBN. These protocols are based on the Provincial Model for a Local Police/School Board Protocol, 2015, developed by the Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services and the Ministry of Education.

References

  • Policy D-01: Digital Technology Use by Students
  • Policy E-11: Equity and Inclusive Education
  • Policy E-15: Workplace Violence and Harassment Prevention
  • Policy G-01: School Volunteers
  • Policy G-02: Safe Schools
  • Policy G-04: Trespass
  • Policy G-05: Weapons
  • Policy G-06: Fireworks, Firecrackers, Pyrotechnical Displays
  • Policy G-07: Vandalism
  • Policy G-11: Assault/Threatening Incidents Involving Students
  • Policy G-12: Alcohol and Illegal Drug Use
  • Policy G-13: Use of Physical Intervention with Students
  • Policy G-28: Student Discipline
  • Policy G-29: Bullying Prevention and Intervention
  • Policy G-38: Complaint Resolution Policy
  • Policy G-39: Human Rights Discrimination and Harassment or Occupational Health and Safety Workplace Harassment