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Behavior Code — GRCMS

Behavior Code — GRCMS

Our desire is to foster a Christian community that is built on love and relationships and creates an atmosphere that is conducive to teaching and learning.  We prepare children to live by God's command to love their neighbor as themselves. Our responses to student issues at school are focused on restorative practices and encourage children to work through challenges and to restore community.  We expect them to be God's healing agents in the world they live in.

Expectations for Behavior in Community

GRCMS is a community of faith and learning where students, parents, and staff partner together in order to create a safe and respectful environment. Both teachers and students have specific roles and responsibilities in achieving this goal. When addressing behavior that impacts community, all students are given due process, considering all sources of information when applying school discipline policies. School discipline problems are documented and recorded.

  1. In order for students at GRCMS to demonstrate respect for others and the community, to be part of a safe and positive environment, and to be ready for learning, the following expectations and rules have been established:

  2. Behave properly in class

  3. Be in class, prepared and on time

  4. Respect the safety of everyone in and outside of the classroom

  5. Show respect for other students and their property

  6. Show respect for staff members, visitors, and school policy

  7. Be honest in all situations

When expectations are not met or community is disrupted, GRCMS uses three categories to identify the seriousness of the infraction and to help guide our response:

  1. Warnings: Issued by teachers/staff members as a corrective measure to help the student change their behavior and attitude. 

  2. Minors: Issued by teachers/staff members for behaviors disruptive to learning. Minor penalty examples:

  • Running, pushing, yelling in the halls

  • Dress code violations

  • Accumulation of three tardies and/or warnings in a given marking period

  • Unauthorized technology use

  • Non-compliance with expectations

  • *NOTE: The content of this list is by no means exhaustive.

3. Majors: Issued by teachers/staff members for actions that damage community and/or put others at risk. Major penalty examples:

  • Abusive language, obscene gestures, or disrespect for God’s name

  • Leaving school grounds without permission during school hours

  • Vandalism/damage to school or personal property

  • Disrespect for others demonstrated in attitude, action, or speech 

  • Stealing

  • Fighting

4. Detentions: Outside of teacher-determined consequences for “warnings” or “minors,” the first step of in-school consequences is a detention. Detentions may be given by any school staff member and are followed up by the GRCMS student life team. Detentions typically happen during the lunch hour.

5. In-School Suspension: An in-school suspension may be used as part of the disciplinary cycle supporting students in modification of unacceptable behavior(s).  Parents are notified when an in-school suspension has been issued along with a rationale for the disciplinary action. Below is the In-school suspension procedure.

6. Suspension: Students may be suspended in-school or from school for the following violations:

  • Possessing, using, distributing or selling a controlled substance, or fireworks in, on, or near school property during the school day and at school sponsored activities.
  • Pulling a false fire alarm
  • Physical harm to others  

  • Fighting and/or threatening other students

  • Harassment of others

  • Stealing or forgery

  • Abusing school property

  • Lighting fires

  • Defiance of school personnel or school

  • Possessing a weapon

  • Possessing obscene or pornographic materials
    *NOTE: This is not an exhaustive list of violations.

7. Behavior Plans: In the life of our Christian school, there are times and cases where students demonstrate a pattern of behavior that compromises learning, the environment, relationships, trust, and the culture and community of Grand Rapids Christian Middle School. When the principal, in collaboration with teachers and the student life team, determine that a child’s behavior warrants an official Behavior Plan, the following process is followed:

  • Teachers, support staff, student life team, and the principal draft a Behavior Plan

  • Parents and families are notified of a need for a meeting

  • The student, parents, teachers, and the principal sign the Behavior Plan

  • As much as possible, the school will pursue support services and opportunities for restoration on behalf of the student.

  • Bi-weekly communication with parents is required when a child is on a Behavior Plan. This communication comes from the principal, student life team or teachers and provides a report of progress toward the behavior goals and action steps established and agreed upon in the Plan.

  • If the student is able to demonstrate progress in meeting the guidelines and expectations of the Plan, teachers, parents, and the principal may agree to move to a “monitoring” status and away from an official Behavior Plan.

​​​Personal/Student Dignity Policy

Harassment, hazing, and bullying of individual students violates fundamental Christian principles. Therefore, the GRCS Board of Trustees has established a dignity policy. GRCHS will respond to conduct, whether intentional or unintentional, which subjects another person to unwanted comments or unwanted actions because of race, national origin, age, gender, sexual orientation, physical characteristics or disability; or other harassment or bullying activity that robs the person of self-esteem, negatively impacts the learning environment or poses a threat to the person. 

If harassment, hazing, or bullying takes place, the student should report it to a teacher, or administrator so that an official report can be filed and an investigation can be conducted. Findings of the investigation will be shared with the parties involved, and appropriate discipline will be implemented if needed. Harassment, hazing, or bullying, including verbal abuse, oral or written, or online, will result in corrective action and penalties, which may include suspension or expulsion. Threats against the welfare of students or school personnel are grounds for expulsion. 

The dignity policy is available here. 

Bathroom/Locker Rooms

  • Bathrooms and locker rooms are not to be used for social gatherings. 

  • Students found congregating in these areas are subject to school discipline. 

  • The boys’ and girls’ locker rooms are off-limits for everyone except during the hour a student has physical education class or during the time a student’s sports team has a practice or a game. 

  • Students found in the locker room outside of those times will be subject to school discipline.  

  • In order to protect students’ privacy in the locker rooms and bathrooms, cell phones and other personal communication devices may not be used in those locations. See PERSONAL DIGNITY POLICY.

Lockers and Personal property

  • Lockers are available to all students. However, the lockers remain the property of the school. 

  • Although the locker is for the personal use of the individual student, the school administration may periodically check lockers and contents as needed. School property is subject to search at any time by school officials. Those searches may take place for any reason at any time, without notice, without student consent. 

  • A student’s person and/or personal items may be searched whenever a school official has reasonable suspicion to believe that the student is in possession of illegal or unauthorized materials. 

  • If a properly conducted search yields materials that are illegal or violate school policy, such findings will result in school discipline and may be turned over to proper legal authorities.

  • Each student is responsible for the locker to which they were assigned. Any problems with the locker must be reported to the office at once. 

  • Defacing or other abuse of the locker are the financial responsibility of the offender for repair or replacement. 

  • While students are not allowed to access another student’s locker, the school cannot guarantee the security of the lockers. 

Messaging/Signage in School

In order to promote a positive learning environment, students must receive approval from a building administrator before posting any signs or messages on school property. This includes but is not limited to anything posted to lockers, walls, bulletin boards, morning announcements, yearbooks, and school-affiliated social media pages. Posted signs and messages should relate to school-sponsored events and themes only. Any signs or messages that include inappropriate content or symbols that are potentially divisive will not be permitted. 

Classroom and/or Hallway Discipline Follow-up

In instances where a student is disruptive or disrespectful in class or in the hallway, a teacher may choose to send that student to the office or refer the student to the office to meet with an administrator.

Chapel Expectations

  • Students are expected to be respectful of what is offered during assemblies and chapels. 

  • Food, drink, personal communication devices, study materials, and book bags are not permitted in the auditorium. 

  • Caps and hats are not to be worn during prayer. 

  • Students are expected to maintain a posture of worship, which includes but is not limited to having feet on the floor, limiting side conversations, removing hoods, and sitting up.

Social Media

  • Students may not create social media pages or other media (posters, podcasts, newspapers...) that use the school's name without permission of a school administrator. Violations may result in loss of school privileges, social probation, or suspension up to expulsion.
  • The school does not monitor students’ interactions on any social media sites. 

  • However, if negative behavior on those sites creates a situation that threatens or damages the learning environment, the administrators will respond to the disruption. 

  • The administrator will follow up with the students involved and their parents/guardians. 

  • Consequences for creating that disruption may include social probation and/or suspension.