State law establishes minimal assurances of due process for students facing disciplinary action.
Mississippi Code 37-11-18 Expulsion of student possessing controlled substance or weapon or committing violent act on school property.
Any student in any school who possesses any controlled substance in violation of the Uniform Controlled Substances Law, a knife, handgun, other firearm or any other instrument considered to be dangerous and capable of causing bodily harm or who commits a violent act on educational property as defined in Section 97-37-17, Mississippi Code of 1972, shall be subject to automatic expulsion for a calendar year by the superintendent or principal of the school in which the student is enrolled; provided, however, that the superintendent of the school shall be authorized to modify the period of time for such expulsion on a case by case basis. Such expulsion shall take effect immediately subject to the constitutional rights of due process, which shall include the student's right to appeal to the local school board.
Mississippi Code 37-9-71. Suspension or expulsion of pupils.
The superintendent of schools and the principal of a school shall have the power to suspend or expel a pupil for good cause, including misconduct in the school or on school property, as defined in Section 37-11-29, on the road to and from school, or at any school-related activity or event when such conduct by a pupil, in the determination of the superintendent or principal, renders that pupil’s presence in the classroom a disruption to the educational environment of the school or a detriment to the best interest and welfare of the pupils and teacher of such class as a whole, or for any reason for which such pupil might be suspended, dismissed or expelled by the school board under state or federal law or any rule, regulation or policy of the local school district. For any suspension of more than ten (10) days or expulsions, a student shall have the right to a due process hearing, be represented by legal counsel, to present evidence and cross-examine witnesses presented by the district. The student and the student’s parent, legal guardian or person in custody of the student may appeal suspension of more than ten (10) days and expulsions to the school board. The standard of proof in all disciplinary proceedings shall be substantial evidence. The parent or guardian of the child shall be advised of this right to a hearing by the appropriate superintendent or principal and the proper form shall be provided for requesting such a hearing.