Code of Conduct

All students and parents are responsible for reading, understanding and upholding this code.


Better Behavior = Better Learning

St. Mary’s Middle School is committed to providing quality learning opportunities that enable all students to achieve within a safe, supportive and disciplined environment.

Students are expected to accept personal responsibility for their behavior and accept the consequences if they fail to follow the Code of Conduct.


The Code

1. St. Mary’s International Middle School will:
  • provide a safe and supportive learning environment;
  • provide comprehensive and engaging curriculum and teaching;
  • initiate and maintain regular constructive communication and relationships withstudents and parents;
  • promote the skills of responsible self-management.

2. All members of the St. Mary’s Middle School Community are expected to conduct themselves in a lawful, ethical, safe and responsible manner that recognises and respects the rights of others.

3. All students are expected to:
  • participate actively in the school’s education program;
  • take responsibility for their own behavior and learning;
  • demonstrate respect for themselves and others, including the right to learn;
  • cooperate with staff and others in authority.


4. Parents are expected to:
  • show an active interest in their child’s schooling and progress;
  • cooperate with the school to achieve the best outcomes for their child;
  • support school staff in maintaining a safe and respectful learning environment for allstudents;
  • initiate and maintain constructive communication with school staff regarding their child’s learning, well-being, and behavior.


5. The Middle School Principal will:
  • play a strong leadership role in implementing and communicating the Code of Conduct;
  • ensure consistency and fairness in implementing the Responsible Behavior Plan;
  • communicate high expectations for individual achievement and behavior;
  • review and monitor the effectiveness of school practices and their impact on student-learning;
  • fully support staff in ensuring compliance with the Code of Conduct.


Values and Principles

The Code of Conduct is based on the following values and principles:

VALUES

The Code of Conduct is underpinned by the following values:

  • Pride: all students are expected to be proud of being a member of the St. Mary’s community and this is shown in the student’s behavior, attitude and academic work.
  • Professionalism: the Middle School is committed to the highest standards of accountability and performance;
  • Respect: treating all people and their belongings with respect and dignity;
  • Innovation and Creativity: fostering safe environments that support innovative and creative practice;
  • Diversity and Inclusiveness: encouraging the Middle School community to participate in education and cultural activities;
  • Excellence: supporting the pursuit of excellence at every level of ability.


PRINCIPLES

The Code of Conduct is underpinned by the following principles:

  • St. Mary’s Middle School expects high standards of personal achievement and behavior;
  • the foundation of positive classroom behavior is effective teaching, inclusive and engaging curriculum and respectful relationships between staff and students;
  • positive behavior is enhanced through a whole school approach and effective school organization and leadership;
  • a strong education relies on excellent partnerships with parents to support positive behavior in school;
  • standards of expected student behavior are linked to transparent, accountable and fair processes, interventions and consequences.
  • responses to inappropriate student behavior will consider the individual circumstances and actions of the student and the needs and rights of the school community members.


Consequences for Unacceptable Behaviour

This Code of Conduct sets out the range and level of responses and consequences for student behavior that is not consistent with these behavioral standards.

The purpose of the Code of Conduct is to:

  • provide the opportunity for all students to learn;
  • ensure the safety of all students and staff;
  • assist students who exhibit challenging behaviors to accept responsibility for themselves and their actions.

In applying consequences for unacceptable student behavior, the individual circumstances and actions of the student and the needs and rights of the school community members will be considered at all times.

The school maintains the right to implement the following types of consequences:

  • after-school detention;
  • in school and out-of-school suspension;
  • expulsion.

The school views education as a partnership between parents and the school. Parents and students are expected to comply with the school rules and policies. Just as a parent can withdraw a child from the school if desired, the school has the right to disenroll a student if it determines, at its discretion, that the parent or student partnership with the school is irretrievably broken.

All forms of discipline within the middle school are not intended to be merely punitive. The aim is to ensure that students understand the impact of their behavior on themselves and on others. Students will take responsibility for their actions and will be expected to make matters right.

Every student at St. Mary’s Middle School will be given every opportunity to succeed. Homeroom and Classroom teachers will do all they can to promote an environment which is supportive and and where all students can learn.


The premise behind this document is that Better Behavior leads to Better Learning for all.


Disciplinary System

Minor Infraction ~ Level I

In most cases, minor problems are dealt with in the classroom by the teacher and no more action is required.

However, if poor behavior continues, the following disciplinary action will take place:

  • For every single minor infraction, the student will receive an Infraction Slip. This slip will detail the infraction and be placed on the student’s records. The student will also complete a Behavior Reflection Form and take any restorative action (such as a full class apology, etc.) required by the teacher.
  • Three minor infractions result in an after-school detention. The student will complete a Behavioral Reflection Form and take restorative action (such as giving a talk about their behavior in front of the class). Parents may be called in for a meeting if necessary.
  • Nine minor infractions will result in an out-of-school suspension and the student will be placed on a Responsible Behavior Plan. This would be in the form of a written behavior contract. If the student’s behavior shows no sign of improvement (i.e. there are further minor or major infractions), then parents will be called in. At this stage, it is recognised that the student’s behavior is interfering with his academic progress and the academic progress of others.

The following behaviours are considered to be minor infraction of the Code of Conduct:

  • Disregard of instructions; missed deadlines, not completing work properly, poor academic attitude, forgetting materials, etc.;
  • Academic cheating (first offence);
  • Low level classroom disruption: such as silly behaviour, not listening, cheekiness, etc.;
  • Untidy lockers;
  • Infringements of wearing school uniform;
  • Eating food and drink outside of cafeteria; chewing gum; eating in class; Graffiti;
  • Littering; not maintaining a tidy school environment;
  • Swearing;
  • Sleeping during class;
  • Unexcused tardiness;
  • Unauthorized use of school property and facilities;
  • Leaving class without permission;
  • Inappropriate dress and infraction of school uniform;
  • Other behavior deemed a minor infraction.


Major Infraction ~ Level II

  • Every single level II major infraction results in an after-school detention. The student will complete a Behavioral Reflection form and take restorative action. Parents may be called in for a meeting.
  • Three major infractions will result in an out-of-school suspension and the student will be placed on a Responsible Behavior Plan. This would be in the form of a written behavior contract. If the student’s behavior shows no sign of improvement, then parents will be called in. At this stage, it is recognised that the student’s behavior is interfering with his academic progress and the academic progress of others.
  • A second suspension may result in expulsion at the discretion of the school. This would be a breaking of the written contract.

The following behaviors are considered to be level II major infraction of the Code of Conduct:

  • Defiance or disrespect;
  • Inappropriate or abusive language;
  • High-level classroom disruption;
  • Property misuse or vandalism;
  • Dishonesty (e.g. lying);
  • Harassment or bullying (name-calling, malicious teasing);
  • Inappropriate use of technology;
  • Failure to serve a detention;
  • Leaving school without permission;
  • Inappropriate racial comments;
  • Contraband - possession of pornography, lighter, cigarettes, dangerous items, etc);
  • Other behavior deemed a major infraction.


Major Infraction ~ Level III

Level III infractions will result in an automatic out-of-school suspension and written behavior contract.

The following behaviors are considered to be Level III major infraction of the Code of Conduct:

  • Physical contact or aggression (fighting);
  • Smoking, drinking alcohol or other substance abuse (drugs);
  • Stealing;
  • Serious cases of bullying/cyber-bullying and identity theft;
  • Other behavior deemed a level III major infraction.

A second level III infraction may result in expulsion at the discretion of the school. This would be a breaking of the written contract.

As the school cannot anticipate all conduct that violates this policy, it reserves the right to take any form of disciplinary action, including expulsion, if deemed necessary.

Students may forfeit attendance on non-academic field trips, and may not participate in after-school activities and sports.


Positive Behavior & Attitudes

Positive behavior is expected throughout the St. Mary’s school community and is based upon safety, responsibility and respect. All infringements extend to behavior in school, online or outside of the school campus. Specifically:

  • in the classroom;
  • during class transitions;
  • in the bathrooms and locker rooms;
  • on the playground (field and basketball courts);
  • in the cafeteria;
  • off campus - both before and after school (e.g. in convenience stores, on trains, etc.);
  • on school outings (e.g. band/choir festivals, sports events, field trips, etc.)

Students of St. Mary’s International School continually represent the school wherever they may be.


Bullying

Bullying in any form whatsoever is not tolerated at St. Mary’s International School. Research indicates that both those being bullied and those who bully are at risk for behavioral, emotional and academic problems. As such, incidents of bullying are dealt with very seriously.


Truancy

Absence from school without parent’s and the school’s permission or leaving the school grounds with the permission or knowledge of the Principal is considered truancy. The first offence results in an out-of-school suspension, and the second may result in expulsion.


Use of Technology

Students will follow the general school guidelines for the use of technology in school. Inappropriate usage of technology may result in the withdrawal of the privilege to use technology on campus.

St. Mary’s Middle School only permits the use of approved laptops under teacher guidance. In particular:

  • Students may use laptops in classrooms, the Learning Commons and other designated areas with teacher permission.
  • Students may not use technology (laptops, phones, iPads, etc) :
  • i. in the hallways;
    ii. in the cafeteria;
    iii. on the sports field and basketball courts.

  • Students must not play games, use social media or text during school hours.
  • Phones may not be used on campus at all, unless permission has been given by a teacher.
  • Misuse of technology will be dealt with under this Responsible Behavior Plan.


    Student Academic Expectations

    The Code of Conduct also extends to Academic Performance. Students are ultimately responsible and accountable for their learning and behavioral outcomes.

    Students are expected to:

  • Come to school to learn and to support the learning of others.
  • Show high levels of engagement, collaboration and cooperation.
  • Have high expectations of behavior and their attitudes towards learning and others.
  • Contribute to a positive learning environment.
  • Produce work that is to the best of his ability.
  • All students are given full academic support by teachers and staff. Students who prevent others from learning and who are not giving their best in accordance with this document will fall under this Code of Conduct.


    Attributes of excellent learners:

    Students are expected to display the following attributes of lifelong learners :

  • Respect: paying attention to and following teacher directions carefully; listening to others and accepting differences of opinion; treating others and personal and communal belongings with care.
  • Readiness: motivation, self-belief, curiosity, self-efficacy.
  • Resourcefulness: learning from others, learning creatively in different ways, flexibility, applying learning.
  • Resilience: keep going, never give up, learning under stress, managing feelings about learning and teachers, peers and resources.
  • Responsibility: maximizing own self-awareness, empathy towards other learners, understanding of how self and others learn, making best use of opportunities for collaborative learning.
  • Reflectiveness: looking back, improving learning and performing, and practicing.