State law requires districts to adopt plans or policies to support studentsâ€™ return to school following suspension or expulsion.
Oregon Administrative Rules 581-021-0065 Suspension
(1) Students may be suspended when such suspension contains within its procedures the elements of prior notice (OAR 581-021-0075), specification of charges, and an opportunity for the student to present his or her view of the alleged misconduct. The suspending official shall notify the student's parent or guardian of the suspension, the conditions for reinstatement, and appeal procedures, where applicable. These procedures may be postponed in emergency situations relating to health and safety. (2) Emergency situations shall be limited to those instances where there is a serious risk that substantial harm will occur if suspension does not take place immediately. (3) School district boards shall provide students suspended under emergency conditions with the rights outlined in section (1) of this rule as soon as the emergency condition has passed. (4) In all suspensions ordered by the executive officer of the school district or designated representative, the district school board shall have the right of final review if the action is not taken by the school board itself. (5) School district boards shall limit suspension to a specific maximum number of days. That maximum shall not exceed ten school days. (6) School district boards shall adopt policies that require consideration of the age of a student and the past pattern of behavior of a student prior to imposing the suspension or expulsion of a student. For students in fifth grade or lower, the policies must limit the use of out-of-school suspension to the following circumstances:
- (a) for non-accidental conduct causing serious physical harm to a student or school employee;
- (b) when a school administrator determines, based upon the administrator's observation or upon a report from a school employee, that the student's conduct poses a direct threat to the health or safety of students or school employees; or
- (c) when the suspension or expulsion is required by law (7) When an out of school suspension is imposed for a student who is fifth grade or younger, district policies must require schools to take steps to prevent the recurrence of the behavior that led to the out-of-school suspension and return the student to a classroom setting so that the disruption of the student's academic instruction is minimized. (8) School district boards or designated representatives shall specify the methods and conditions, if any, under which the student's school work can be made up. Students shall be allowed to make up school work upon their return from the suspension if that work reflects achievement over a greater period of time than the length of the suspension. For example, the students shall be allowed to make up final, mid-term, and unit examinations, without an academic penalty, but it is within the districts' discretion as to whether the students may be allowed to make up daily assignments, laboratory experiments, class discussions or presentations. (9) In special circumstances a suspension may be contained until some specific pending action occurs, such as physical or mental examination, or incarceration by court action.
Oregon Revised Statutes 339.250 Duty of student to comply with rules; policies on discipline suspension expulsion threats of violence or harm firearms and physical force; student handbook or code of conduct; enforcement of policies
(2) Each district school board shall adopt written policies for the discipline, suspension or expulsion of any refractory student. The policies:
- (e) When an out-of-school suspension is imposed as provided under paragraph (d) of this subsection, must require the school district to take steps to prevent the recurrence of the behavior that led to the out-of-school suspension and return the student to a classroom setting so that the disruption of the student’s academic instruction is minimized.
- (f) Must be limited so that:
- (A) The duration of an expulsion may not be more than one calendar year.
- (B) The duration of a suspension may not be more than 10 school days.
- (g) Notwithstanding ORS 336.010, may require a student to attend school during nonschool hours as an alternative to suspension if the total number of hours does not exceed the equivalent of 10 school days.
(3) Pursuant to the policies adopted as provided by subsection (2) of this section, each school district shall develop a student handbook, code of conduct or other document that:
- (a) Defines and helps create a learning environment that students respect;
- (b) Defines acceptable norms of behavior for students and the types of behavior that are subject to discipline;
- (c) Establishes procedures to address behavior or circumstances that pose a threat to the safety of students or employees of the school;
- (d) Establishes a system of consequences that are designed to correct student misconduct and promote behavior within acceptable norms; and
- (e) Makes the system of consequences known to the school community through the dissemination of information to students, parents, legal guardians and school district employees.
(4) Each district school board shall adopt written policies on managing students who threaten violence or harm in public schools. The policies adopted by a district school board under this section shall include all of the following:
- (a) Staff reporting methods.
- (b) Provisions that allow an administrator to consider and implement any of the following options:
- (A) Immediately removing from the classroom setting any student who has threatened to injure another person or to severely damage school property.
- (B) Placing the student in a setting where the behavior will receive immediate attention, including, but not limited to, the office of the school principal, vice principal, assistant principal, counselor or a school psychologist licensed by the Teacher Standard and Practices Commission or the office of any licensed mental health professional.
- (C) Requiring that a school obtain an evaluation of a student by a licensed mental health professional before allowing the student to return to the classroom setting. A student who is removed from the classroom setting for an evaluation may not be removed for more than 10 school days unless the administrator is able to show good cause that an evaluation could not be completed in that time period. The policy must describe the circumstances under which the district school board may enter into contracts with licensed mental health professionals to perform any evaluations required under this subparagraph.
- (c) The requirement that an administrator provide to the parent or legal guardian of the student notification that describes the student's behavior and the school's response.