Rhode Island School Discipline Laws & Regulations: Limitations or Conditions on Exclusionary Discipline

Discipline Compendium

Rhode Island School Discipline Laws & Regulations: Limitations or Conditions on Exclusionary Discipline

Category: Exclusionary Discipline: Suspension, Expulsion, and Alternative Placement
Subcategory: Limitations or Conditions on Exclusionary Discipline
State: Rhode Island

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LAWS

16-2-17.1. In school suspensions.

Suspensions issued shall not be served out of school unless the student's conduct meets the standards set forth in § 16-2-17(a) or the student represents a demonstrable threat to students, teachers, or administrators.

16-19-1. Attendance required.

(d) No school shall use a student's truancy or absenteeism as the sole basis for using an out-of-school suspension as a disciplinary action.

16-21-18. Students prohibited from bringing or possessing firearms on school premises.

The school penalty for bringing or possessing a weapon as defined in 18 U.S.C. § 921, a firearm or realistic replica of a firearm within school premises, premises being used for school purposes or activities, into a vehicle used for school transportation, or onto a roadway or path along which school children or teachers are walking to school shall be suspension from school for one year. This penalty will also be incurred when a student is not on school premises but when he or she aims a firearm or realistic replica of a firearm at school premises, school vehicles, or students, staff, or visitors attending school or in transit to or from school. This term of suspension may be shortened by the superintendent of schools on a case-by-case basis and under guidelines to be developed by the school committee with broad parent, teacher, and community involvement.

16-21-21.1. Penalties for drug, alcohol or weapons offenses.

The discipline of any public school student for violating a school policy relating to the possession or use of alcohol, drugs or weapons not described in § 16-21-18 of this chapter, shall be imposed on a case-by-case basis pursuant to guidelines developed and promulgated by the school committee for that district. The guidelines and any discipline imposed shall take into account the nature and circumstances of the violation and the applicability of any federal laws governing students with disabilities.

16-21-34. Statewide bullying policy implemented.

(a) The Rhode Island department of education shall prescribe by regulation a statewide bullying policy, ensuring a consistent and unified, statewide approach to the prohibition of bullying at school. The statewide policy shall apply to all schools that are approved for the purpose of § 16-9-1 and shall contain the following:

(5) The range of disciplinary actions that may be taken against a perpetrator for bullying or retaliation; provided, however, that the disciplinary actions shall balance the need for accountability with the need to teach appropriate behavior; and provided, further:

(i) A parental engagement strategy; and

(ii) A provision that states punishments for violations of the bullying policy shall be determined by the school's appropriate authority; however, no student shall be suspended from school unless it is deemed a necessary consequence of the violations.

REGULATIONS

200-RICR-20-10-1 Section 1.3.2. Supportive and nurturing school community.

F. Positive Behavioral Supports and Discipline

2. Each LEA shall ensure that:

e. Disciplinary actions are fairly administered for all students and comply with state laws mandating that certain violations be considered on a case by case basis; recognizing that there is no mechanism in Rhode Island law for expulsion of students.

200-RICR-30-10-2 Section 2.8. Disciplinary action.

A. The disciplinary actions for violations of the bullying policy shall be determined by the school/district appropriate authority. Disciplinary actions for violations of the bullying policy shall balance the need for accountability with the need to teach appropriate behavior. The severity of the disciplinary action shall be aligned to the severity of the bullying behavior.

B. The range of disciplinary actions that may be taken against a perpetrator for bullying, cyberbullying or retaliation shall include, but not be limited to:

1. Admonitions and warnings;

2. Parental/ Guardian notification and meetings;

3. Detention;

4. In-school suspension;

5. Loss of school-provided transportation or loss of student parking pass;

6. Loss of the opportunity to participate in extracurricular activities;

7. Loss of the opportunity to participate in school social activities;

8. Loss of the opportunity to participate in graduation exercises or middle school promotional activities;

9. Police contact; or,

10. School suspension, though no student shall be suspended from school unless it is deemed to be a necessary consequence of the violation of this Policy.

216-RICR-20-10-4 Section 4.41. Weapons and firearms.

A. All schools are required to have policies prohibiting possession of firearms and other weapons and imposing penalties for such possession in conformity with R.I. Gen. Laws § 16-21-18 and the " Gun Free Schools Act ", 20 U.S.C. § 8921 et seq.

1. All school districts must ensure the discipline policies regarding incidents of students in possession of weapons are imposed on a case-by-case basis.

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