ERIC Number: ED202119
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1981-Mar
Student Discipline Codes: Developments, Dimensions, Directions. A Legal Memorandum.
Goldsmith, Arthur H.
In considering written codes of student conduct, it is important to distinguish between discipline and codes of discipline and between legal necessity and educational desirability. Educators remain free to decide about the desirability of diverse disciplinary measures so long as the minimal constitutionally mandated procedures are followed. In fact, a school has the authority to discipline students without written rules, except in Massachusetts, where publication and filing of student conduct regulations is required. The jurisdiction of a school to punish has generally extended to the point where the student's misbehavior has a direct and detrimental tendency to injure the welfare of the other students in the school. Since court cases control much of life today, school administrators who rewrite their discipline policies must be cognizant of constitutional rights and educational law. Discipline codes should provide for fairness, fact-finding, fullness of information, candor, flexibility, firmness, suitability of punishment to offense, compatability of student and school interests, feasible implementation, the least restrictive approach necessary, and good faith in proceedings. However, a discipline code is but one critical element in a school's discipline program. Fair administration of the rules, written and unwritten, is a far more important ingredient. (Author/WD)
Descriptors: Civil Rights, Codes of Ethics, Compliance (Legal), Court Litigation, Discipline, Discipline Policy, Elementary Secondary Education, Guidelines, Legal Responsibility, School Policy, Student Rights
National Association of Secondary School Principals, 1904 Association Drive, Reston, VA 22091 ($.50; quantity discounts).
Publication Type: Legal/Legislative/Regulatory Materials; Opinion Papers; Guides - Non-Classroom
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: National Association of Secondary School Principals, Reston, VA.