Central Middle School Student Handbook
(includes dress code)
The Administration requests that all families review this Student Conduct Policy at the start of the school year. We ask that any questions about the following information be brought to our attention.
Student Behavior Standards:
At CMS it is our intent to provide students with the guidance and tools to develop self-control, character, orderliness and efficiency. Appropriate behavior and consideration for others will decrease discipline problems and create a positive learning environment for all.
With an understanding of the purposes of discipline at CMS, you may form a positive attitude toward it, do your part in making your school an effective place of learning and develop the habit of self-control, which will make you a successful student.
Our rules and expectations are designed to assist staff and students to focus on teaching and learning and not on correcting inappropriate behavior. The rules center of the following beliefs:
- Teachers have the right to teach.
- Students have the right to learn. Therefore, the staff expects that students will be:
- Managers of their own behavior
- Encouraging and supportive
- Involved and cooperative
- Friendly, courteous and respectfully
- Energetic and enthusiastic
- Educationally motivated
The school community has created these standards and rules to make CMS a “good place to be”. Students should be proud of their school and its reputation for excellence and good citizenship. Our standards are goals that we strive for in all of our daily activities.
We will enable everyone in the school community to do his/her best work.
- Arrive to all classes on time, ready to learn.
- Use appropriate behavior in classrooms, the library and on campus.
- Bring all necessary materials to class including completed assignments.
- Be cooperative and positive with substitute teachers.
- No food or beverages during class time. No gum chewing.
- Be quiet in the halls during class and passing times.
- Students should move from hallways to the playground at the beginning of lunch. Students needing to use their cubbies should do so immediately and then move to the playground.
- Students are expected to cooperate fully with all staff members including teachers and others who are on yard duty.
We will show respect for the feelings and ideas of everyone in our school community and we will do our best to give our school a good reputation.
- Use proper language.
- Solve problems without name calling or fighting.
- Be courteous and respectful to others.
- Be cooperative.
We will ensure the physical safety of all members of the school community.
- Solve problems without fighting.
- No “roughhouse” type play.
- Keep your hands, feet and body to yourself.
- Stay out of the trees.
- Stay out of “off limits” areas.
- Do not throw objects, food or liquids.
- Be considerate of the safety of others while at the cubbies, in the halls and on the grounds.
We will maintain our school’s physical environment to its best possible level.
- Use trashcans for litter, pick up any trash or litter that you see.
- Use recycling bins for recycling bottles and cans.
- Keep cubbies free from marks/writing/stickers.
- Use all school property with care and respect.
- Keep school free from grafitti
- Gum chewing is prohibited.
- Leave bathrooms clean and neat for the next person.
We will ensure the safety of all members of the school community to and from school.
- Walk bicycles, skateboards and scooters while on school grounds, including corridors and the front of the school between the hours of 7:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m.
- Leave the bike rack as soon as bikes, skateboards or scooters have been secured.
- Observe safe bicycle riding practices; helmets are required by law.
- Obey San Carlos traffic and helmet laws.
- Be courteous and follow the directions of the bus driver.
- Board buses in an orderly manner.
- Observe all safety rules. Violations will result in the loss of privilege of riding bicycles, skateboards, scooters or buses.
We will obey all state and local laws.
The San Carlos School District Board of Trustees is committed to meeting its legal and moral responsibility to safeguard the health, character, citizenship and personal development of students. Violations of state and local laws are grounds for suspension and/or expulsion.
The staff at Central Middle School believes that academic integrity and honesty are fundamental components of a student’s education and character development. Central Middle School expects that students will not cheat, lie, plagiarize or commit other acts of academic dishonesty. Students found to have committed an act of academic dishonesty shall be subject to classroom and/ or school site consequences.
- We treat everyone with RESPECT and CIVILITY.
- We are each accountable for our actions.
- We don’t ignore aggression.
- After we make a mistake, we make it right.
- Adults help us deal with forming healthy relationships.
- We protect each other.
Bullying is not tolerated. There are several steps taken with students in a bullying situation. These include: Conflict resolution/mediation, discussion with the counselor, teacher or administrator, parent contact and disciplinary action.
When the Principal or Assistant Principal assigns students detention or a teacher requests that a student remain after school for disciplinary reasons, students are expected to comply with this request. Detention assigned by the administration typically occurs during the lunch period after the student has finished eating his/her lunch. Students will give back to the CMS community by picking up trash; if a student is opposed to doing this an alternate consequence will be agreed on. Students may be assigned detention for multiple days depending on the severity of the action. Parents are always informed in advance if a student is expected to stay after school for longer than 10 minutes.
Personal Items/Electronic Devices Cell Phones:
Personal items of financial value such as cell phones, iPods, tablets (such as iPads, Kindles) MP3 players, digital cameras, etc. are not appropriate for school and should be left at home. If electronic devices are brought to school, they should not be visible, used, in your possession or “on” the person of the student from the time they arrive at school to the end of school. These objects, if brought to school should be kept out of sight with the sound turned off.
If an electronic device causes a distraction to the learning process it will be confiscated. If the item in question is needed for a class project, permission must be obtained from the teacher first, before bringing the items to school and it should be left in the classroom. We strongly recommend that these items be left at home.
If confiscated, items will be kept in the school office until a parent or guardian can pick it up. Any additional violation will require a parent/guardian conference before the return of the item.
There have been an increased number of incidents where students are caught using their cell phones to make calls and/or to send text messages during the school day. Possession and use, whether it is talking or texting is not allowed during the time they arrive at school to dismissal at 3:13 p.m. Any emergency call can be made using a telephone in the office. The Administration recognizes that many parents prefer to have their child have a cell phone with them as a means of contact and/or in the event of an emergency. However, during school hours the cell phone MUST remain turned off. This includes during recess and lunch breaks. Progressive discipline will follow in all cases.
1st Violation: Phone/device confiscated. Conference with administrator prior to the phone being returned. Parent contacted.
2nd Violation: Phone/device confiscated. Conference with the parent and student prior to the phone being returned. Parent picks up phone.
3rd Violation: Phone/device confiscated. Parent contacted. Student is no longer permitted to have a cell phone at school.
Rules for a Two-Story Building:
Severe injuries can result from anything, big or small, being thrown from the second story. Throwing anything from the second story will result in immediate disciplinary action. The elevator will be reserved for students in wheelchairs or with an injury. If a student requires assistance, another student may use the elevator with them for assistance purposes only.
Always use the right side of the stairs. Walk up the stairs on the right side and walk down the stairs on the right side. This will allow for better flow and is much safer.
Never run up or down stairs!
Never read papers while using stairs.
Focus on the stairs, not conversations or other distractions that may be present. Always look straight ahead when using stairs.
Only take one step at a time.
Get help if you have to carry something up or down stairs. Ensure you always have at least 1 hand free when using stairs. For the steps located outside, be extremely careful if it is raining. Never slide down a handrail.
All adult members of our school community will make disciplinary decisions by following our school behavior standards. When a student does not make appropriate decisions and does not abide by the standards of Central Middle School, the following disciplinary actions may be taken:
- Teacher conference
- Principal/Assistant Principal/Counselor conference
- Parent contact
- Removal from source of problem (i.e. time out)
- Detention (recess, lunch, after school)
- School service work detail (community service)
- Behavior contract
- Loss of school privileges/activities
- Referral to the San Carlos Police Department
- Expulsion from school and/or district
Satisfactory academic performance consists of a 1.75 grade point average with no Fs and fewer than 2 Ds. Students who do not maintain satisfactory performance may be placed on activity restriction, which can include limitations to participation in extracurricular activities such as after school sports. It is our expectation that the staff at CMS will work with the students and families to support students who may be struggling at school.
School District practice requires that for an eighth grade student to participate in the promotion ceremony that they must have a cumulative GPA of 1.75. Whenever there are mitigating circumstances in any of the above situations a committee consisting of, but not limited to: Administration, Counselor and staff will rule on the eligibility of an individual student.
In order to encourage academic excellence, CMS requires that all students shall demonstrate satisfactory academic progress and satisfactory citizenship. A student who maintains these standards may participate in all school activities. Students who are put on activity restriction may not attend field trips, or participate in after school sports.
Punctual and regular attendance is extremely important for a student to be successful at school. Additionally, current funding laws for public school cause schools to lose funding for all absences; excused or unexcused.
Students are expected to come to school wearing school appropriate clothing only. All students and adults are expected to keep themselves clean, well-groomed and dressed appropriately as to not distract or offend others.
Shoes must be worn at all times. Shoes must permit safe movement. Flip-flop sandals are considered unsafe and may NOT be worn to school.
These guidelines apply to all school activities:
Sagging: The crotch of the pants or shorts may not go below the student’s longest finger when the arm is extended straight down (mid-thigh rule); crotch seam length must not inhibit natural and safe movement.
Hats, Hoods, Beanies and Sunglasses shall not be worn indoors.
Attire such as chains, or other objects which may cause property damage or get caught and restrict safe movement, are prohibited.
Clothing, jewelry and personal items (backpacks, gym bags, water bottles etc.) shall be free of writing, pictures or other insignia which are crude, vulgar, profane or sexually suggestive, which bear drug, alcohol or tobacco advertising, promotions or likenesses or which advocates racial, ethnic or religious prejudice or which depict/advocates violence or show images of weapons. All are prohibited.
Clothing shall be sufficient to conceal undergarments at all times.
See-through or fishnet fabrics, halter tops, off-the-shoulder, spaghetti straps or low-cut tops, bare midriffs and skirts or shorts shorter than mid-thigh are prohibited. Walking length shorts are recommended.
Deliberately torn clothing is prohibited.
Pajamas are prohibited.
Hair shall be clean. Hair may not be sprayed with any coloring that would drip when wet.
Restrictions on freedom of student dress will be imposed by the administration or staff whenever the mode of dress in question is: (1) Unsafe either to the student or those around the student (2) Disruptive to school operations and/or the education process in general (3) Contrary to law. Students who are in violation of the dress code will be expected to comply by a variety of means including but not limited to: reversing their clothes (wearing the shirt inside out), wearing their PE clothes, having the item of clothing removed or contacting parents/guardians to provide a change of clothes.
If a student is absent for any reason, a parent/guardian must inform the school office as soon as possible by calling the attendance line at 650-508-7321, ext 1 and leave a message. The attendance line is open 24 hours a day. If calling is not possible, the student must bring in a note written and signed by a parent/guardian.
A student who misses school entirely or a class without appropriate permission is considered truant. Truancy is a serious offense, if three or more days are missed, and not excused, a letter will be sent home explaining the next steps in the process.
All students are required to be on time to school. Students are also expected to be on time to classes throughout the day. If a student is struggling with being on time to school or on time to his/her classes the CMS school staff are available to discuss the problem and support the student with this. If a student has 3 or more 30 min or greater unexcused tardies, this is considered to be a truancy issue. This will be addressed with a letter home outlining the next steps in the process to support our student.
Appointments during the school day:
If a student must leave school during the day for any reason, a parent/guardian will need to make this request and inform the school office. When leaving school, a parent/guardian must sign out the student in the office. If the students returns to school after the appointment, you will need to sign in and the student will receive an admit slip to return to class.
Bicycles, skateboards and scooters are only permitted for transportation purposes. Once on campus they are to be put away in the appropriate places. A bike cage is provided for students to park their bikes or scooter. However, students MUST use a separate lock to secure the bike or scooter within the cage. For skateboards and scooters we also have a shed that is locked after school begins, and unlocked at the end of school.
All injuries should be reported to a teacher. For minor injuries, all teachers have first aid kits. If a student becomes ill at school, he/she should report to the office after obtaining a pass from his/her teacher. The office will assess the student and contact parents/guardians if the student needs to be sent home. If it becomes necessary to take any form of medication at school, a signed authorization from the physician and medication in the original prescription container must be provided to the office. Parent notes are not acceptable. Over the counter medication are NOT available in the office. Students with special medical conditions or physical injuries that impacts student participation in P.E. must have a physician’s notice brought to the office and to the P.E. teacher.
The use of cubbies is required. Backpacks, handbags, books and other materials in the hallways, outside of classrooms can be a safety hazard. Items not secured in cubbies can be misplaced, or damaged. It is strongly recommended that students utilize their cubbies regularly to avoid having personal and instructional property damaged or lost. Cubbies are school property; once issued, a cubby becomes your responsibility. Cubbies do not have closable doors, therefore, valuables should not be left inside a backpack or in a cubby. The school is not responsible for lost or stolen articles so we cannot stress enough to KEEP YOUR VALUABLES AT HOME!! Cubbies are to be used for school purposes only. You should avoid having any personal items and property in them. Cubbies must be kept clean and organized. Do not use your cubby to store excess clothing or food (food cannot be left in cubbies overnight).
Lunch & Closed Campus:
CMS is a closed campus. Students may not leave campus for lunch. Once a student is on campus she/he may not leave campus without direct communication with parents/guardians and the school office. Please note: This is also true in the morning before school starts. Students who walk to school or are dropped off at school are not allowed to leave campus. Once a student enters the campus they are considered “at school” and may not leave.
- The school lunch program is available daily to all students.
- All food and drinks must be eaten in designated areas. On rainy days lunch can be eaten indoors as needed.
- Microwave ovens are not available for student use.
- If you need to deliver your child’s lunch to school, please do so before the lunch period begins. You can leave the lunch at the front counter in the office.
The school has an emergency/safety plan in to order to ensure the safety of students and adults during an emergency.
Emergency drills are held at regular intervals as required by law. Teachers review emergency instructions with the students.
CMS has a well-stocked emergency shed including, water, food, and medical supplies; additionally the campus is connected by emergency radio with the district office, and the other school campuses for coordination purposes.
Keep our Campus Clean:
We take pride in our campus and our cleanliness should reflect our commitment to an excellent education. Students are required to clean up after themselves. Any food item should be eaten, thrown away or brought back home. Students caught littering will be asked to help clean the campus during lunch or recess.
Newsletter email communication:
Monday mornings at 7:00 AM a weekly newsletter is sent out to all parents. This newsletter will provide regular communication about upcoming events at school, in the school district and in the local community. We also use this newsletter to keep our community informed about changes to our schedule, or program.
Additionally, the same email communication list is used regularly to share school and community events and meetings. The School District also maintains a email list, please visit the SCSD website to add yourself to this list. If you are working as a PTA chair or need to communicate something to the school community please visit the CMS website, www.centralsancarlos.org. Please note that all communication is reviewed by administration before being included in the newsletter.
Central Arroyo PTA meetings are regularly scheduled each month. Membership is open and encouraged to all parents and teachers. Please join and attend meetings! You can attend the meetings even if you are not a member, but you cannot vote unless you are a member, so please join! You can join online at www.centralsancarlos.org/onlinestore.
Student Body Cards:
Each student is issued an ID card. This card is used throughout the year for various reasons, including a valid photo I.D. for students in the community. Lost or damaged cards can be replaced at a minimal cost.
The telephones at school are available for students to contact parents or guardians with permission from school staff. Cell phones are not to be used on campus without permission.
Textbooks/School supplies and instructional materials:
Students are responsible for all textbooks and materials issued to them. We expect that students will treat ALL instructional materials with care. Students who lose or damage any school materials are expected to pay for the replacement of these items. If these items are not recovered a student may be placed on activity restriction until the debt is paid.
All visitors, including parents must report to the office before visiting campus. At check-in, visitors will be issued a pass. Visitors are required to wear this pass while on campus. Student’s friends or relatives are never permitted to visit them or the school during the instructional day.
Graffiti and Vandalism:
Students caught in the act of vandalizing the school will pay for damages. Other disciplinary action will be taken. This can include the involvement of the San Carlos Police Department.
Chewing gum is not permitted on campus at any time, unless accepted by school staff. Detention and/or clean up will be assigned for violations.
Disclaimer: The information within this handbook is for general reference. Administration reserves the right at any time to change, edit, adjust, update, delete and add information as needed and as directed by the San Carlos School District.