Student Handbook

Contacting Your School/Teacher

     The school telephone number is 355-4800.  Parents will be able to leave a voice message and teachers are required to return the call within 24 hours. Parents wishing to confer with teachers on the phone are requested to limit their call to before or after school.  Students needing to call home may use the school phone for emergencies only. Any change in the after-school routine needs to be given to the teacher in a note.

Harassment

Must be unwelcome advances, either verbal or physical, request for favor, and other verbal or physical conduct that contributes to decisions affecting the student or personnel, interferes with the learning process, or creates an intimidating, hostile, or offensive environment.  If it is reported, 1) it will be taken seriously.  2) an investigation will be done.  This involves both adults and students.

Distribution of Materials

According to School Board Policy, “none of the facilities, the staff, or the student of a school shall be used in any manner for advertising or otherwise promoting commercial or other nonstop interest…”  A written school policy is available.

Business Education Partnerships

We want to encourage the community to be partners with us in providing a quality education for the students at Hollis Academy. Please contact the principal if you have any questions or suggestions.

Daily Schedule - 8:00 – 2:30

7:15 – 7:45 Children who arrive on a school bus are to go directly to the cafeteria.  Teachers will be on busy duty to supervise students.  (Breakfast is served 7:15 – 7:45.)  

7:45  Classrooms are opened and teachers are in their rooms.  Students are dismissed from the holding area to report directly to their rooms.  Breakfast will be served for students who walk, ride a bicycle, or come by car after 7:15 a.m.  Breakfast is not served after 7:40 a.m. unless there is a late bus.  Others should arrive between 7:45 and 8:00 a.m. and go directly to class.

8:00 School begins.  Students should be in their classrooms and ready to begin the school day.  After 8:00 a.m. students are tardy.  IF YOUR CHILD HAS BEEN TARDY FOR ANY REASON, IT WILL BE NECESSARY FOR YOU TO COME INTO THE SCHOOL AND SIGN HIM/HER IN AND GIVE A REASON FOR THE TARDY.  The student will then be given a permit to enter class.

2:30  Children are dismissed.  Students are receiving instruction until dismissed.  Tardies and early dismissals are considered a violation of the S.C. Attendance Laws, when excessive may be referred to the attendance office and could be considered educational neglect by family court.  Students should leave the school grounds by 2:45; supervision is only provided for after-school programs. Law enforcement may be called for students that are on school grounds w/o parents.

Textbooks

The state provides free textbooks for all students in elementary school.  If a textbook is lost or damaged by a student, the student must pay the assessed amount.

Homework

Homework is an extension of the classroom.  It helps provide needed practice while developing responsibility and maturity.  Students are expected to begin work on long-range projects as soon as they are assigned to avoid working late at night or on weekends.  
The parents’ role is to provide time and space for quiet, productive work and to provide encouragement and reinforcement.

Related Arts Program

Art, Music,  and Physical Education teachers work with each class for a 45 minute period each week. Classroom teachers also provide activities in each of these areas.

Parent Information of Speech/ Language Screening

     As part of student services, students may be screened for speech/ language/ hearing/ and vision problems throughout the school year. If you have concerns and wish your child screened, please contact the principal in writing.

Support Services Program

The support services program provides for students who have an identified learning problem.  Due process procedures are followed when placing children in the program.  Written permission for psychological evaluation and placement is obtained from the parents.  A staffing committee recommends placement, and a written educational plan for the student is provided.  Students who are in the program work in small groups with the support services teacher for a portion of the school day, but spend most of the day in a regular classroom.  The aim of the program is provide individual instruction to help each child reach his potential.  
Hollis Academy also provides a self-contained class setting.  The same due process placement procedures are followed for these students.

Challenge Program

The school district provides a program for gifted and talented students at designated grade levels. Students will be selected to participate in this program based on state criteria.

Field Trips

Field trips are planned by the teacher for specific instructional purposes.  They are considered an extension of the classroom.  Students remain under the school district code of discipline when on field trips.  The school requires written permission from the parents or legal guardian before a child is permitted to go on a field trip.  Each child may be asked to pay a small fee to cover the expense.  If a child does not go on the field trip, a refund of the cost of the trip will be made up on request.  Parents may be required to attend field trips based on administrative judgment.

Testing Program

Hollis Academy follows the district and state testing programs.  Standardized achievement and aptitude tests are administered and test results are available, upon request, to the parents.  Standardized test data is not used for grading.  It is used to identify those areas in which students show academic strength or weakness and to help improve the instructional program. 

Grading Guidelines

Students will be evaluated with due consideration and recognition given to individual differences. Student performance is evaluated by tests and other available methods. Student behavior and conduct is excluded from consideration in determining a students’ grade. The following grading scale is adopted by the school district and will be applied: 
90 - 100+ = A
80 - 89 = B
70 - 79 = C
60 - 69 = D
50 - 59 = U
Please talk with your child’s teacher if you have any questions.

Report Cards

Report cards are prepared every nine weeks are sent home four times a year.  If a report is not received at the end of each nine-week period, please notify the child’s teacher or school office.  It is necessary for parents to furnish a self-addressed stamped envelope in which the final report can be mailed.

Policies and Regulations

Attendance 

Truancy

A child, ages 6 to 17 years, is considered truant when the child has three (3) consecutive unlawful absences or a total of five (5) unlawful absences. The term "unlawful absence" shall refer to any absence without a written excuse, or any parent note after ten (10) that was not excused by the principal. 

When a student accumulates 5 unexcused absences, this or her name will be displayed in the Incident Management System (IMS). Schools must make reasonable efforts to meet with the parent(s) or guardian(s) to identify the reason(s) for the student's unlawful absences. These efforts should include telephone calls, home visits, letters, and e-mails. During the meeting, a written "intervention plan" must be developed with the parent(s) or guardian(s) to improve the student's attendance. A student, age 12-16, should also participate in the meeting. The intervention plan must include: 

If possible, the intervention plan should be completed in the IMS system. If completed outside the system, the individual completing the plan must document in IMS that a plan was completed on paper and a copy is on file. 

If a student accumulates two additional unlawful absences after an intervention plan has been established, the student will be referred to the appropriate attendance supervisor. The Attendance Supervisor Referral Form, a summary of the student's attendance and the intervention plan will be sent to the attendance supervisor from the school. The attendance supervisor shall intervene in an attempt to improve the student's attendance. 

If there are further bsences, the student is considered to be a "chronic" truant and should be referred to the attendance supervisor again. The Attendance Supervisor will make a decision regarding a possible referral back to Family Court based on the circumstances. 

Transfer of plans- If a student transfers to another public school in South Carolina, intervention plans shall be forwarded to the receiving school. School officials will contact the parent(s)/guardian(s) and local team members to review the plan and revise as appropriate. Court ordered plans may be amended through application to the court. 

Transfers


When a child is moving from Hollis Academy to another school, please notify the school office at least one week in advance, giving your new address.  A transfer form will be prepared which may be picked up by the parent the last day of the child’s attendance.  You must have this form to enter your child in his/her new school.  It will be necessary for the parent to sign a release form so that your child’s records can be forwarded to the new school.  The new school will request the records and they will then be forwarded.

Early Dismissal/ Tardies


Children will be considered tardy at 8:00 am. Any child arriving to school after 11:30am will be considered absent for the day.

If parents must take a child from school before the close of the day, they must send a note in the morning stating the reason for an early dismissal and the time the child will be picked up.  Parents must sign the student out in the school office if the child is being dismissed before 2:30.  Whenever possible, medical and dental appointments should be made after school hours.  To provide time for afternoon announcements and a smooth dismissal, no early dismissals after 2:00 p.m.  


No child will be allowed to leave the school grounds during hours unless signed out by a parent or another adult designated by the parent.
Students will be expected to leave the school grounds immediately after dismissal at 2:30 unless they are staying for the Extended Day Program.  Details of the program will be sent home.  Children should be cautioned about accepting rides with strangers.

Discipline


Legal Authority
A.  Sections 59-5-65, 59-19-90, 59-63,210 through 270 South Carolina Code of Laws 1976, as amended.
B.      Polices JR, JDA, JDB, JDC, JDD, and JDE; Policy Manual of The School District of Greenville County
     Most discipline problems should be handled between the teacher, student, and parent.  While discipline is an individual matter, the school district is unequivocally committed to the principle that disorderly and disruptive behavior shall not be permitted to interfere with the right of other students to pursue an education; nor will improper conduct be tolerated.  All students will be required to conduct themselves at all times in a manner that will be in the best interest of the school and its students.  Every reasonable effort will be made to keep students within the school’s sphere of influence...

1.   Students will respect the rights and property of others.
2.  Students will respect and properly care for school property.  This includes the building, furniture, books, and materials.
3.  Students will show proper respect to all teachers and adult supervisors.
4.  Absolutely no throwing of dangerous objects nor fighting will be permitted at school or while going to and from school.
5. Students will not be permitted to use foul or obscene language
6.  Hazing of students will not be tolerated.  Any act by a student which tends to injure, degrade, or disgrace another student constitutes hazing. 
7. Discipline policies included in this publication are based on information at time of printing. District discipline policies are outline in Parent Express, the Greenville County School's parent newsletter, which will be mailed in early August.

Reporting Bullying, Discrrimination, Harrassent, Intimidation, and Miscounduct

   The District is committed to fostering an environment that both promotes learning and prevents disruptions to the educational process. Accordingly, the District prohibits all forms of bullying, discrimination, harrassment, or intimidation. As provided in Board Policy and Administrative Rule JCDAG, students and parents may file a report of bullying, discrimination, harrassment, or intimidation, or misconduct by other students, employees of the District, or third parties involved in the school setting.

     All reports should be filed with the principal or his/her designee. Reports may also be filed by a student's parent. If the allegation is against the school's administration, the student or parent should file a report directly with the District's Parent Resource Representative. (See policy JA for contact information) Anonymous reports may be made, but those reports must provide the District with adequate information in order to begin an investigation. 

     Additionally, students and parent should immediately report any concerns related to employee interactions with students that are inconsistent with the requirements and expectations contained in Board Policy GBV. Concerns that should be immediately reported to a school's administration include potential mistreatment of students and other conduct by employees that could constitute inappropriate interaction or communication, including those sexual in nature.

Incestigations and consequences

Reports will be investigated promptly, thoroughly, and confidentially. The investigation shall include appropriate steps to determine what occurred and to take actions designed to end the harrassment, intimidation, or bullying, and prevent such misconduct from reccuring. The student and his/her parent shall be informed of the results of the investigation and shall be advised how to report and subsequent issues. Any discipline of students or staff shall remain confidential. 

If the invesitgation determines that inappropriate conduct has occurred, the administration shall take responsible, timely, age-appropriate, and effective corrective action. Examples of corrective action include, but are not limited to, disciplinary action against the agressor, up to and including termination of an employee or expulsion of a student. The District prohibits retaliation or reprisal in any form against a student or employee who has filed a report. The District also prohibits any personfrom falsely accusing another person.

Appeals


     Notification of the outcome of the investigation will be issued in writing to the complainant and the complainant will be informed of the right to appeal. An appeal related to disability discrimination or harassment should be made to the District’s 504 Coordinator. An appeal regarding color, race, or national origin should be made to the District’s Title VI Coordinator. An appeal regarding sexual harassment, sexual misconduct, or gender discrimination should be made to the District’s Title IX Coordinator. (See Policy JA for contact information). A complainant may then appeal the decision of the coordinator to the Superintendent or his or her designee. Complete copies of the District’s Policy, Administrative Rule, and report form referenced above can be located at BoardDocs Pro. You may also receive a copy of Policy JCDAG, Administrative Rule JCDAG, or the report form from your school upon request.

Conduct With School Personnel

     As required by state law, any student who commits a non-aggravated assault and battery on school grounds or at a school sponsored event against any person affiliated with the school in an official capacity is guilty of the misdemeanor of assault and battery against school personnel and may be fined not more than $1,000.00, imprisoned for not more than one year, or both. Judicial, law enforcement, or corrections officials must notify the principal of any conviction of this crime, of the crime of assault and battery of a high and aggravated nature against a school official, and of other “violent crimes.” Information concerning convictions of these crimes will be included in the student’s permanent record. The student’s teachers will be notified annually of conviction of these crimes. Any school official who reports a school related crime in good faith is immune from criminal and civil liability arising from the report. ALL SCHOOL RULES APPLY TO CONDUCT WHILE RIDING BUSES.

Parent- Teacher Conferences

There will bea at least one scheduled conferencebetween the child's teacher and parent during the school year, usually at the end of the first 45-day reporting period. All parents are expected to attend this scheduled conference. Parents are encouraged to initiate conferences at any time by writing a note or calling the school office for an appointment with the child’s teacher. When teachers observe the need, additional parent-teacher conferences, will be requested.

 Visitation in School

     Parents and visitors are welcome. Prior to your visit, you must call the office to arrange a time that is convenient with the teacher. Class visits are a time for observation ONLY, but they furnish an excellent background for teacher-conferences. Parent classroom visitations should be limited to a 30-minute session. At no time, should parents interrupt the class to speak with the teacher.  Any questions or conferences should be reserved for a later period when more time is available.  All visitors in the building, including parents and school volunteers, will be required to check in at the office and wear a dated visitor pass. This regulation is for your child's protection. This will keep classroom interruptions to a minimum and allow visitors in the building to be reached if needed.

Smoking 

There is no smoking on school grounds or at any events.

School Parties

     There are two scheduled parties each year. They are held after lunch at the school. Individual birthday parties at school are not allowed. Invitations to birthday parties may be distributed at school as long as there is an invitation for every child in the class. Staff cannot assist in handing out invitations. We cannot give out student addresses. Please do not send presents to be delivered during school (helium balloons, flowers, stuffed animals, etc.) If you plan on providing a birthday food treat, it must be provided at designated lunch time.

Promotion and Retention

     The curriculum at Hollis Academy is such that children are able to make continuous progress, regardless of the grade placement. It is recognized that some students benefit from the opportunity to continue in the same grade another year. Certain criteria are followed during the retention process. During the first parent conference, parents are informed if the child is not doing grade level work. By the end of the third reporting period, a teacher should be able to identify a child who may need to be retained and will notify the parents that their child may profit by continuing in the same grade another year. Final responsibility for promotion and retention of students rests with the principal.

Student Speakers at School-Sponsored Activities

     The School District of Greenville County is committed to maintaining an educational environment in which students of all backgrounds, beliefs and religions are welcome
and treated with equal dignity and respect. The District will neither advance nor inhibit religion. In accord with the United States Constitution, the District protects private expression, including religious expression, by individual students as long as that expression does not create a disruption to or interfere with the educational
environment. Student speakers at school-sponsored activities, including graduations, may not be selected on a basis that either favors or disfavors religious speech. Where
student speakers are selected on the basis of genuinely neutral, evenhanded criteria and retain primary control over the content of their expression, that expression is not
attributable to the school and therefore may not be restricted because of its religious or secular content. In contrast, where school officials determine or substantially
control the content of what is expressed, such speech is attributable to the school and may not include prayer or religious content. A school, however, may prevent or
remove a speaker if the content of their speech is obscene, contrary to the District’s behavior code or substantially disruptive to the school environment. For a comprehensive overview of student’s rights, please review the U.S. Department of Education’s guidelines on religious expression in public schools.

Provision on Privacy Rights


Confidentiality of Records
     In most instances, access to a student’s records is restricted to the student’s parents or legal guardian (regardless of custodial rights), appropriate school district and educational access by valid subpoena or court order. Most other persons may obtain access to student records only with the written consent of the parent or guardian. Unless parents or guardians direct otherwise, however, the district will release directory information consisting only of a student’s name, school, grade, dates of attendance, degree and awards received, participation in officially recognized activities and sports without prior written consent. Questions about additional confidentiality rights for both handicapped and non-handicapped students may be obtained through the principal’s office.

Child Abuse 

     Any teacher, nurse, counselor or other school professional acting in an official capacity who has reason to believe a child under age 18 has been subjected to or adversely affected by physical, mental, or emotional abuse/neglect must make a report to the County Child Protective Services or appropriate law enforcement agency in accordance with the SC Child Protection Act of 1977.

Articles Prohibited and Money at School

     Articles which are hazardous to the safety of others or interfere in some way with school procedure may not be brought to school. Such items as guns, toy guns, bean shooters, knives, box cutters, razor blades, brass knuckles, mace / pepper spray, etc., are not permitted at school. They will be taken from the student and a parent conference will be required. Expensive articles such as dolls, electronic games, headsets, jam boxes, and skateboards, etc., should not be
brought to school. These articles may be damaged and Hollis Academy will not be held responsible. Real weapons will not be returned. Toys will not be returned until the parent comes for them. Children should be discouraged from bringing money to school except for specific purposes. When money is brought to school by the student, please place it in a sealed envelope with the student’s name, amount, teacher’s name and purpose on the envelope. Neither the teacher nor the school can be held responsible when money or items are lost.