Rules, Policies and Procedures
Welcome to Whittier Elementary School! This manual is designed to acquaint parents and students with our school policy and procedures. We hope you use this manual throughout the year. Please read the information provided and discuss these issues and ideas with your children.
Accidents and Illness
Students involved in minor accidents such as skinned knees and scrapes will be cared for by the school staff. If there is any question regarding the seriousness of an injury, parents will be called.
If it is necessary for a child to be sent home because of an accident or illness, you (the parent/guardian) will be notified to come and get the child. If the parent/guardian cannot be reached, the person designated for emergencies will be notified. If none of the designated people can be contacted, the principal, or the principal designee will decide what to do and may – depending on the situation – call for medical assistance.
It is vital that the school be provided with up-to-date residence, work, and emergency phone numbers.
Americans Disability Act (ADA)
The ADA allows for reasonable accommodations to be made in order for a person with a disability to receive an appropriate education. If you suspect your child may have a disability, please contact the principal. The Pupil Services Team will meet to evaluate and determine what action or accommodation, if any, is appropriate.
Attendance and Absences
The Utah Compulsory Attendance Laws require all school age children to be in school. Parents may excuse up to 7 days per school year. In order for an absence to be excused beyond that point, documentation must be provided to verify doctor or dental visit, funeral or family emergency.
Educational experiences on a vacation may count toward excused time. Please see the principal to determine how to provide the needed documentation.
If it is necessary for your child to be absent from school, please call the school at 385-646-5096. For your child’s safety, if we do not hear from you, the office will try to contact you. When your child returns to school, please send a note to the office and/or teacher.
Bicycles, Skateboards, Scooters, and Roller Blades
Due to the number of people on the school grounds, bikes, skateboards and scooters must be walked/picked up once a child enters school grounds. Students bringing bikes and scooters must have a bike lock, and must secure the bike or scooter to the bike rack during school hours. Skateboards, blades, and shoes with roller wheels (heelies) may be brought to school but must not be used on school property before, during, and after school hours. Skateboards, blades, and heelies must be in a student’s backpack or they will be confiscated by an adult and will only be given back to a parent/guardian.
Caution: The school cannot assume responsibility for loss or damage to any items brought from home, or accident resulting from students not following these procedures.
If you would like to send treats for your child’s birthday, please contact the teacher to make prior arrangements. Remember that State Health Policy prohibits distributing food items that are not commercially prepared and packaged. All treats must be commercially prepared or prepared by someone with a valid food worker’s permit. We ask that parties, balloons, and other activities which disrupt learning be held after school.
Supervision before school:
Supervision is provided on the north playground area beginning at 8:15 am. At the school’s discretion on cold or wet days, students will be supervised in the gym. Students may either play outside or enter the building and sit in the gym. On cold or wet inside days, supervision will be provided inside the gym, but will not be provided on the playground or other parts of the building. Students may not be in other parts of the building prior to the warning bell at 9:00 am. To prevent bullying and other problems, the administration recommends that you do not allow your child to arrive at school any earlier than 10 minutes before start time, unless s/he is eating breakfast. Breakfast is served from 8:25 – 8:50 am in the lunchroom.
Internet access is available, under teacher supervision, throughout the school. Before students are allowed Internet access, an Acceptable Use Policy Form must be signed and recorded at the school. Students who misuse their internet privileges and go to inappropriate sites intentionally, or unintentionally without immediately notifying the teacher, will have all computer privileges revoked.
The students and staff are expected to treat others with dignity and respect.
Being kind, courteous, and respectful are the governing values at our school.
Appropriate behaviors are expected at all school activities. Disruptions and abusive behaviors will not be allowed. Parent/guardian help and support will be requested for instances where behaviors violate the school code of conduct.
School Code of Conduct
BE RESPECTFUL – Students will always show respect for themselves, other students, all adults, and the property of others by exhibiting appropriate language and behavior that will foster a pleasant and safe environment for everyone.
FOLLOW DIRECTIONS THE FIRST TIME – Students will follow all district, school, and classroom rules and procedures as outlined by the Board of Education, school administration, and teacher. These procedures are located in the first day packet.
K.Y.F.O.O.T.Y (Kie-foo-tee) – Keep Your Hands, Feet and Other Objects To Yourself.
POSITIVE CONSEQUENCES FOR FOLLOWING THE CODES OF CONDUCT
Awards and Certificates
More Positive Experiences
Respect for Other Students
Respect for Teacher
Respect for Parents
CONSEQUENCES FOR NOT FOLLOWING THE CODES OF CONDUCT
Verbal Warning. If the behavior continues after the verbal warning, the teacher will give a…
Stop & Think. The student will go to a time-out area for 5 minutes. If the behavior continues, the teacher will give another…
Stop & Think. The student will again go to the time-out area for 5 minutes. If the behavior continues after three warnings, the student will be issued a…
Stop & Go. The student will be given a note and will go to a pre-arranged classroom for 15 minutes (grades K-3) or 30 minutes (grades 4-6).
The student will bring home a Stop & Go form to be signed by the parent/guardian and returned the following day. If a student has three or more Stop & Go infractions in one week, a conference will be scheduled with the student, parent, and school representative to discuss a plan to help correct the inappropriate behavior.
Serious behaviors that endanger students and adults will be handled according to the Granite School District Safe School Policy and may result in suspension/expulsion.
Note to Parent/Guardian: Please be supportive by signing and returning Stop & Go forms the next day. If the note is not returned with the parent’s signature, the student will still receive the consequence at school and the parent/guardian will be contacted for a conference.
Teachers will have a classroom reward system established as a part of their discipline plan. Classroom rewards should be explained at the beginning of the year. Any questions regarding class rewards should be directed to the teacher.
Additionally, school-wide rewards include: participation in school assemblies/special events, access to the Principal’s Pantry, extra privileges, field trips, or other changing reward activities.
When the bell rings for school to be dismissed (3:45 Mondays through Thursdays; 1:30 on short days) students are asked to exit the building through the doors in the student’s wing which the teacher has designated as the exit doors. If older students need to pick up younger students, an outside meeting location, such as the flag pole, needs to be arranged. Jr. High and High School students are not allowed on school property during school hours. Students from other schools will be asked to leave the premises if they have not checked in at the office and are in the building/premises during school hours.
Students may remain after school only with prior parental permission. If students are to be kept after school more than 5 minutes, parents will be notified in advance.
We support the position that parents should oversee their children’s dress so that it is modest, clean, and appropriate. We offer these guidelines for school:
· Clothing should be adequate for the weather.
· Shorts may be worn during warm weather, not tight or short (must come down to the tips of the finger tips or less than 4 inches above the knee).
· No tank tops (any sleeveless shirt that does not go to the shoulder edge), biker shorts, halters (bare backs), midriffs (skin exposed when arms are raised), or cut-offs (sleeves/legs), or any clothing with gaping openings.
· No pajamas, slippers and clothing that allow under-garments to be exposed.
· Gang apparel may not be worn. Gang apparel may include, but is not limited to: hats, bandanas, baggy pants, “sagging” pants, coats, “hoodies”, or gloves worn inside, heavy or multiple chains, writing on the body, or Old English Text. Shirts that have personalities on them affiliated with gang activity (i.e.: Tu Pac, Insane Clown Posse, 50 cent, etc.) are prohibited.
· No apparel which may promote substances illegal for children, including alcohol, tobacco, or illegal drugs.
-No lewd, crude or obscene material.
· Make-up, perfume, hair spray, etc. may not be brought to school.
· Extreme hair styles or hair colors are not allowed as they are a distraction for others and may inhibit learning in the classroom.
· Hats and pulled-up hoodies are not to be worn in the building.
· Shoes must be worn at all times. Flip flops and sandals should not be worn for PE or recesses.
Drugs & Alcohol
The State of Utah has taken a strict “No Tolerance” stand against drugs and alcohol on or around school grounds within 1,000 feet. The illegal possession, distribution, sale or being under the influence of alcohol, controlled substances, over-the-counter prescription medications, or intoxicants of any kind by students is prohibited in all Granite School District schools, on school grounds, at school sanctioned activities, or when students are being transported in vehicles dispatched by the district. Violations also include student use, possession, distribution or sale of drug paraphernalia, imitation controlled substances or resorting where drugs are being used or possessed (Administrative Memorandum 19).
Note: Smoking is prohibited in, on the grounds or within 1,000 feet of any Granite School District facility. This includes smoking in your car while waiting to drop off/pick up students.
State law requires that ALL medication, over-the-counter or prescription, taken by students at school MUST be administered by trained school personnel. Also, NO medication can be administered without written direction and instruction from the parent AND the student’s physician, including over the counter medication. Medication forms must be signed by the parent and the physician. These forms are available in the school office.
Students are not permitted to transport medication to school or keep medication in their possession. Instead, all medication needs to be brought by an adult in the original pharmacy labeled container and all medications must be kept at the office.
Under doctor’s orders, asthma inhalers can be kept in the child’s possession with the required paper work. Please contact the office for the paperwork requirements.
Elementary Music Program
Both Band and String Instrument Programs are offered for 5th and 6th grade students. Students are required to practice daily and must maintain good academic standing to participate. Some instruments are available at the school; however, most will need to be provided by the students.
In the event that a major crisis or disaster occurs during school hours, every effort will be made to provide for the safety and well being of the students.
The best way you as a parent or guardian may assist us in a smooth evacuation and/or release of students is to have current emergency contact numbers on your child’s registration card in the office.
A lock-down is when a dangerous or unsafe situation occurs outside of the classroom. For the safety of students and staff members the building will be locked, classroom doors and windows locked, blinds drawn, and students kept in the classroom away from windows. Doors will not be opened and people will not be allowed to enter the building or classrooms until the principal and/or police determine the area is again safe.
A lock-down will be put into effect by an announcement over the intercom by office personnel stating, “This is a lock-down.” If students are out at recess, the duty person will blow the whistle in long blasts and signal the students to quickly enter the building.
In the event of a fire, the fire alarm will sound and all persons in the building are expected to quickly and quietly exit the building through the closest door available. Classes are to take emergency packets and class rolls outside and reassemble by classes on the lawns. Teachers will be responsible to account for all students and to maintain class control until it is determined which procedure will be used next.
We live in an earthquake zone and the possibility of an earthquake is very real. Due to the nature of this crisis, no warning can or will be given. Official Granite School District policy states that students are expected to “Duck and Cover” as quickly as possible. This means they are to crawl under a desk or table, making sure their heads and as much of their bodies as possible are protected by the desk or table. Because the furniture will also be moving, students are instructed to grab hold of the legs of the desk or table and hold on securely. If the desks or tables are of an adjustable nature, students need to hold on to the top part of the leg, not the bottom portion. Once the movement stops, teachers will evacuate their classes and reassemble on the lawn, as they would in a fire drill situation.
The building will be evacuated using a pre-established “runner system” to alert teachers. All staff members and visitors will be required to turn off all electronic communication devices such as cell phones, walkie-talkies, etc. to avoid any detonation due to a radio signal. When the building has been declared safe students will be allowed back into the building
In the event of a school closure before the school day begins, TV and radio news stations will carry news bulletins and information.
Evacuation for most emergencies will proceed as outlined in the fire evacuation procedures. The north lawn is the designated evacuation site. In the event of inclement weather, security concerns, or other hazardous conditions, all students and personnel will be evacuated to an alternative site such as the park or a church
Plans for Re-Uniting Families
If the district authorizes a school closure, or if emergency circumstances warrant release to parents, all students must be checked out ONLY by office personnel. In the event of evacuation, the school’s file containing student enrollment information will be evacuated with personnel. Students will ONLY be released to individuals designated by a parent or guardian on the enrollment card. The time and location of release and signature of individual taking custody will be recorded by office personnel or designee.
Emergency Preparedness Drills
Emergency drills are held once a month. These include fire, earthquake, and lockdown drills. It is mandatory that the entire building be evacuated or follow other appropriate school procedures at such times. This includes parents, or other visitors, as well as teachers, students, and staff.
Food Policy- Salt Lake County
No home prepared food items can be brought to school for consumption by anyone other than your child. Commercially prepared and packaged food items are the only permissible treats.
We urge all parents to notify the school of any major or significant changes that occur in your child’s health. It is important that you notify your child’s teacher of any and all health problems. Written instructions regarding action to be taken for known health problems should be sent to the teacher each year.
Utah law requires all students enrolled in Utah schools to have a Certificate of Adequate Immunization. This form may be secured by the school, County Health Department, or the child’s personal physician’s office. Students who are not adequately immunized according to current Utah State Law will not be allowed to attend class.
Keeping Children Healthy
Parents are expected to keep children home when they show symptoms of contagious illness, fever, vomiting, etc.
Playground activities which take place during recess and the lunch period are part of the school day and your child is expected to participate in those activities. Therefore, children should wear adequate clothing on cold days.
You may request that your child stay indoors for up to 3 days following an illness. Please send a written note to your child’s teacher each day that he/she is to stay in, explaining the reason. Requests over 3 days will require a doctor’s note.
Leaving School Early
The school will not release a student during the school day unless a previously authorized adult has signed the child out at the office. Parents should list on the registration cards any neighbor and/or relative who is authorized to sign a child out of school. If the adult is not listed on the card, students will not be released. Please keep in mind that excessive early checkouts count towards a student’s attendance. Students are required to be in school 405 minutes per school day (6 hours, 45 minutes).
Lost and Found
Lost and found items are stored near the cafeteria. Please label your child’s clothing and other belongings. Items not claimed at the end of each month will be donated to charity.
The state of Utah utilizes the program called Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP). Information about CHIP is available at the office, from the school psychologist/social worker, or by calling 1-888-222-2542.
Money and Other Valuables
Do not send valuable items or extra money to school. The school cannot be responsible for loss or damage to personal belongings. A drop box is available in the office for students to use to pay lunch money and class donations. Please make sure the student’s first and last name and the teacher’s name is on an envelope before placing in the box. Granite School District policy does not allow teachers to handle monies other than Scholastic Book sales.
Non-elementary students are not to be on school grounds during school hours and immediately after school unless accompanied by a parent. If older brothers or sisters are to meet a younger sibling, they need to arrange a meeting place off of school grounds. All secondary school-aged students, will be asked to leave.
As we strive to create better partnerships with parents and school, we have a Community Council to give input regarding community needs and school improvement.
Elections were held in the spring for the current school year, and will be held in the fall for the 2012-13 school year. When there are no nominees, the current parent members appoint replacements.
Dropping Off and Picking Up Students
Please follow the school’s pick up/drop off procedures. Students may be dropped off or picked up in front of the building, or at the back of the building in the northeast pick up/drop off zone. We encourage students to follow safe practices at all times. Please do not allow children to run between cars. They should cross only in designated crosswalks where the crossing guard is located.
Parents are required to follow the direction of any supervising adult in the parking area. Traffic/safety violations will result in the driver’s license plate being recorded and reported to the proper authorities. Please remember to remain calm and to treat school staff how you would like to be treated if you were in their place.
Parent Teacher Association (PTA)
We encourage all parents (fathers and mothers) to join the Parent Teacher Association (PTA). The PTA is the voice for parents in the nation, state, school district, and this school. The staff members work with the PTA members to provide the best experience for our students. The more parents who participate in PTA, the better our school will run.
Pets and Other Animals
In all cases, parents must consult with the teacher before bringing any animal to school. Once arranged, all animals must be properly caged or leashed. All animals must be taken home immediately after the sharing experience.
If your child has any allergy to animals, please inform the teacher so we may avoid any reactions to pets brought for Show and Tell.
Animals running loose on school grounds will be turned over to Animal Control.
Teachers may have class parties as reward activities and these are to be conducted under the teacher’s guidance. Students may not arrange “surprise” parties for teachers or friends during school time.
School Lunch and Milk
School breakfast and lunch may be purchased any day of the week. Parents or students come to the office to pay their lunch money.
Do not expect food to be furnished on a credit basis. Students are informed when the account is low and are given a note to take home when the account is overdrawn, reminding them to bring more money. You are responsible to insure that your child does not go hungry.
Student/Adult & Non-Student
Regular Price Reduced Price
Lunch $1.40/ $ .40
Milk $ .30
Breakfast $ .85/ $ .30
Breakfast will be served from 8:25 am to 8:50 am each morning.
Under the National School Lunch Program, free and reduced-price lunches are available for qualifying families. Application forms are available at the office. Until your child brings home notification from the school that the application has been approved, please furnish lunch for him/her or pay full price for the meal.
School Safety Policy
If a student violates the “School Safety” policy which includes any acts of violence; possession of any type of weapon; any form of organized gang activity; or any type of criminal behavior, s/he will receive the following consequences:
Suspension from school.
Immediate referral to law enforcement officials.
Mandatory parent/guardian conference at school.
Referral to the district Safe School Committee (severe or repeat violations) for expulsion or alternative placement.
Weapons of any kind, real or pretend, are not to be brought to school, not even as part of a costume or project. Pocket knives are considered weapons.
Mandatory school consequences, including law enforcement referrals will be given for weapons violations. A weapon is any item that by its use or intended use, including a look-alike or representation of a weapon, leads a person to reasonably believe the item will cause injury.
Combustible materials, including matches and lighters may not be brought to school. It is against the law and will be considered a serious offense.
“Any form of sexual harassment by staff or students, including inappropriate verbal, written, or physical conduct as defined in the Granite District Sexual Harassment Policy, is strictly prohibited.” If you or your child feel there is a problem with sexual harassment, you have the right and are encouraged to report the problem immediately to any teacher, counselor, administrator, or other staff member. The problem will then be reported to the principal/assistant principal who will notify parents of any students involved, conduct a preliminary investigation and help resolve the issue.
When sexual harassment constitutes child abuse, the principal must follow reporting requirements of district child abuse policy and state child abuse laws.
Children are held responsible for the condition of all textbooks and library books checked out to them. A charge may be assessed if these books are lost or damaged beyond normal wear. Basic school supplies are provided for all elementary students by the school at no charge. It is permissible for students to provide their own school supplies, but these should not distract students from their class work in any way.
Students are expected to be in their classrooms and in their seats when it is time for school to begin. If a student arrives after 9:05 am, s/he must be checked in at the office. In cases of frequent tardiness, a warning letter will be sent to the student’s parent/guardian. A student’s academic and/or citizenship grades may be affected by multiple tardies.
Excessive tardies are addressed in the Utah Compulsory Attendance Law.
Incoming messages: We discourage messages for students; please make plans with your child before school. In case of an emergency, please leave a message with the office and we will get the message to your child as soon as possible. Telephone use is under the direction of staff for educational purposes, not for students’ personal use. Parents should contact the office to reach a student. Calling a student’s cell phone or calling a teacher’s room directly, to reach a student, is not permitted.
Cell phones: We discourage student possession of cell phones at school. Any cell phones brought to school must be turned off during school and put away in a backpack. Students using cell phones during school time (including recesses) will have the cell phone confiscated and will receive disciplinary action. Confiscated cell phones will only be given back to a parent/guardian.
Toys, Games, and Other Non-Educational Items
Toys and other items that are not part of the educational program should not be brought to school. Parents may pick up confiscated items at the office. Electronic devices may NOT be brought to school and will be taken to the office if seen.
Weapons (including pocket knives either real or look-a-like), may not be brought to school and will NOT be returned when confiscated.
Vacation Homework Policy
The administration discourages taking family vacations during school time. We understand the once-in-a-lifetime opportunities; however, it is unlikely that teachers will be able to give out homework/assignment lists before the vacation.
Twenty minutes of daily reading and completion of a daily writing journal is always appropriate, and may take the place of some missed assignments.
Generally days taken for vacation are unexcused. Arrangements to have vacation days of educational value excused must be made through the principal. Vacations longer than 10 days will result in a student being dropped from school records unless proper arrangements have been made. If a student is dropped, a parent/guardian must re-enroll the student upon returning from vacation.
Parents are invited, and always welcome, to volunteer at the school. When you visit the school:
Come to the office, sign in and obtain a visitor pass.
Wear the visitor pass in the building during school hours.
Allow school to proceed with minimal disruptions.
Appointments for school hour visits with staff members are required, and expected for before/after school visits.
When bringing an item to your child, leave it at the office to have your child pick it up, OR have your child called down and speak with him/her in the office or foyer.
Messages to teachers will be placed in their boxes. You may request that the teacher be notified of the note.
Allow a secretary to set up meetings with the principal or assistant principal when needed. This will be done as quickly as possible.
Parents have access to their own children only. It is against the law to question or ask for information regarding other students.
We cannot honor requests for school-age relatives, friends, or pre-school age children to attend school with a student. Students must be registered and live within the school boundaries (or have administrative approval) to attend Whittier Elementary.
Parent Expectations and Recommendations
Research has shown that for a student to be successful in school, parental support is vital. The following are recommendations on how you, as a parent/guardian, can help ensure that your student has a successful year.
If your student eats breakfast at home, make sure s/he has a nutritious, well balanced breakfast.
Check your students to make sure they are clean, their clothes are clean, and that they have their backpacks, homework, and anything else needed for school.
Make sure your student arrives at school on time.
When dealing with Whittier staff, please remember that we all want what is best for your student. We strive to treat everyone with respect and courtesy. Please return the favor.
Most problems can be resolved by contacting the teacher first. We ask that you suspend judgment until you have heard both the student’s and the teacher’s side of the story.
Be supportive and come, when possible, to special programs, assemblies, or performances in which your student is participating.
Think about volunteering in your child’s classroom if work/home schedules permit.
If you encounter a problem that cannot be solved by the teacher, please do not hesitate to make an appointment with an administrator.
Support the Stop & Go discipline program.
Refrain from speaking negatively about school staff in front of your student.
Pay all fees in full and on time.
Make sure that your student adheres to the Granite School District Attendance Policy by minimizing late drop offs (tardies)/early pick ups (checking out early) and/or absences.
Pick a homework “safe place” (usually a nightstand) where your student can leave and pick up his/her homework for your inspection/signature.
Set a time (usually 30-60 minutes) after school in which your student must do his/her homework. If s/he says that s/he does not have homework (which is rare), we recommend that you provide homework for your student that you have either obtained from his/her teacher, downloaded, or bought at the store to maintain structure and consistency. Reading 20 minutes per night is mandatory.
Read to your student as often as possible. If your student is older, have him/her read to you. This may count as your 20 minutes of reading.
Make sure your student gets a full night’s rest. It is difficult for children to learn if they are tired and irritable upon arriving to school.
In our experience with thousands of different students, if parents follow the above recommendations, their students will have a support structure that will allow for maximum growth and potential!
Thank you for taking the time to read this manual. We are grateful for the opportunity to educate your child. If you have any questions or concerns regarding any of the topics mentioned above, please call and make an appointment to speak with an administrator at your convenience. We are always happy to hear from you. “Teamwork makes the dream work!”