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Policy 3241

Student Discipline


The Board of the La Center School District focuses on the educational achievement of each and every student. The District holds high expectations for all students and gives all students the opportunity to achieve personal and academic success. ”Discipline” means any action taken by the school district in response to behavioral violations, including exclusionary as well as  positive and supportive forms of discipline. The Board intends that this policy and procedure be implemented in a manner that supports positive school climate, maximizes instructional time, and increases equitable educational opportunities.

The purposes of this policy and accompanying procedure include:

  • Engaging with school personnel, students, parents, families and the community in decisions related to the development and implementation of discipline policies and procedures
  • Supporting students in meeting behavioral expectations, including providing for early involvement of parents
  • Administering discipline in ways that respond to the needs and strengths of students and keep students in the classroom to the maximum extent possible
  • Providing educational services that students need to complete their education without disruption
  • Facilitating collaboration between school personnel, students, families and parents to support successful reentry into the classroom following a suspension or expulsion
  • Ensuring fairness and due process in the administration of discipline
  • Implementing discipline that provides every student the opportunity to achieve personal and academic success
  • Providing a safe environment for all students and for district employees


Rights and Responsibilities/District Commitment


The Board recognizes the negative and disproportionate impact of exclusionary discipline practices and is committed to:

  • Identifying and addressing discipline policies and practices that perpetuate educational opportunity gaps;
  • Proactively implementing discipline practices that support students in meeting behavioral expectations without losing access to instruction;


The District will observe students’ fundamental rights and will administer discipline in a manner that does not:

  1. Unlawfully discriminate against a student on the basis of sex, race, creed, religion, color, national origin, sexual orientation, gender expression, gender identity, disability, or the use of a trained dog guide or service animal;
  2. Deprive a student of the student’s constitutional right to freedom of speech and press, the constitutional right to peaceably assemble and to petition the government and its representatives for a redress of grievances, the constitutional right to the free exercise of religion and to have the student’s school free from sectarian control or influence, subject to reasonable limitations upon the time, place, and manner of exercising the right;
  3. Deprive a student of the student’s constitutional right to be secure in the student’s person, papers, and effects against unreasonable searches and seizures;
  4. Unlawfully interfere in a student’s pursuit of an education while in the custody of the school district; or
  5. Deprive a student of the student’s right to an equal educational opportunity, in whole or in part, by a school district without due process of law.


The District’s student discipline policy and procedure is designed to provide students with a safe, healthy, and educationally sound environment. Students are expected to be aware of and comply with this policy and procedure, including behavioral expectations that respect the rights, person, and property of others. Students are also expected to pursue the required course of studies. Students and staff are expected to work together to develop a positive climate for learning consistent with Board policies.


Development and review

Accurate and complete reporting of all disciplinary actions, including the associated student-level information, behavioral violations, and other forms of discipline the district considered or attempted, is essential for effective review of this policy; therefore, the district will ensure such reporting.

The district will collect data on disciplinary actions administered in each school as required by RCW 28A.300.042, and any additional data required under other district policies and procedures.


The District will ensure that school principals confer with certificated building employees at least annually to develop and/or review building discipline standards and review the fidelity of implementation of those standards. At each school in the district, principals and certificated staff will develop written procedures for administering discipline at their school with the participation of other school personnel, students, parents, families, and the community. Each school will:

  1. Establish behavioral expectations with students and proactively teach expectations across various school settings.
  2. Develop precise definitions for problem behaviors and behavioral violations to address differences in perceptions of subjective behaviors.
  3. Define the differences between minor and major behavior incidents to clarify the types of behaviors that may or may not result in classroom exclusion or are severe enough that an administrator needs to be involved.
  4. Identify a continuum of best practices and strategies for classroom-based responses that building staff should administer before or instead of classroom exclusion to support students in meeting behavioral expectations.


Schools handbooks, codes of conduct, and building discipline standards must not conflict with this policy, accompanying procedures, or other Board policies. A school’s building discipline standards must be annually approved by the district superintendent or designee.


School principals will ensure teachers and other school personnel receive adequate support to effectively implement a continuum of identified best practices and strategies that:

  1. Focus on prevention to reduce the use of exclusionary discipline practices;
  2. Allow the exercise of professional judgment and skill sets; and
  3. May be adapted to individual student needs in a culturally responsive manner.


School principals will confer with certificated building employees at least annually to establish criteria for when certificated employees must complete classes to improve classroom management skills.


The District will periodically review and further develop this policy and procedure with the participation of school personnel, students, parents, families, and the community. As part of this development and review process, the district will use disaggregated data collected under RCW 28A.300.042 to monitor the impact of student discipline practices as well as to improve fairness and equity in the administration of student discipline. Discipline data must be disaggregated by:

  1. School.
  2. Student groups, including by gender, grade level, race/ethnicity (including further disaggregation of federal race and ethnicity categories in accordance with RCW 28A.300.042(1) and CEDARS Appendices Y and Z), low-income, English language learner, migrant, special education, Section 504, foster care, and homeless.
  3. Behavioral violation.
  4. Discipline types, including classroom exclusion, in-school suspension, short-term suspension, long-term suspension, emergency removal, and expulsion.


The District will follow the practices outlined in guidance from the Race and Ethnicity Student Data Task Force when disaggregating broader racial categories into subracial and subethnic categories. The District will consider student program status and demographic information (i.e. gender, grade-level, low-income, English language learner, migrant, special education, Section 504, foster care, and homeless) when disaggregating student race and ethnicity data to identify any within-group variation in school discipline experiences and outcomes of diverse student groups. This process may include reviewing data to prevent and address discrimination against students in protected classes identified in chapters 28A.640 and 28A.642 RCW, however, the District will ensure it reviews disaggregated discipline data in accordance with WAC 392-190-048 at least annually.


The District will support each school or building leadership teams or committees to:

  • set at least one goal annually for improving equitable student opportunities;
  • create an action plan or plans;
  • evaluate previous goals and action plans; and
  • revise goals and action plans, based on evaluations.


Schools will share identified goals and action plans with all staff, students, parents, families, and the community.


Distribution of policies and procedures

The District will make its discipline policy and procedure available to families and the community. The district will annually provide its discipline policies and procedures to all District personnel, students, parents and families, which may require language assistance for students and parents with limited-English proficiency under Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

The District will ensure district employees and contractors are knowledgeable of this student discipline policy and procedure.   At the building level, schools will annually provide the current building discipline standards, developed as stated above, to all school personnel, students, parents, and families, which may require language assistance for students and parents with limited-English proficiency under Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Schools will ensure all school personnel are knowledgeable of the school building discipline standards. Schools are encouraged to provide discipline training developed under RCW 28A.415.410 to support implementation of this policy and procedure to all school staff as feasible.




This policy and accompanying procedure will be construed in a manner consistent with Washington law as stated in WAC 392-400-020.



Cross References: 2121 – Substance Abuse Program
2161 – Special Education and Related Services for Eligible Students
2162 – Education of Students With Disabilities Under Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973
3122 – Excused and Unexcused Absences
3210 – Nondiscrimination
3520 – Student Fees, Fines, or Charges
4210 – Regulation of Dangerous Weapons on School Premises

3241F- District Discipline Matrix

Legal References:
RCW 9.41.280 Possessing dangerous weapons on school facilities — Penalty — Exceptions
RCW 28A.150.240 Certificated teaching and administrative staff as accountable for classroom teaching — Scope — Responsibilities — Penalty
Chapter 28A.225, RCW Compulsory school attendance and admission
Chapter 28A.320, RCW Provisions applicable to all districts
RCW 28A.400.100 Principals and vice principals — Employment of — Qualifications — Duties
RCW 28A.400.110 Principal to assure appropriate student discipline — Building discipline standards — Classes to improve classroom management skills
Chapter 28A.600 RCW, Students
WAC 392-190-048 Access to course offerings – Student discipline
Chapter 392-400, WAC Student Discipline
34 CFR Part 100.3 Regulations implementing Civil Rights Act of 1964
42 U.S.C. 2000d et seq. Civil Rights Act of 1964


Management Resources:

2021 – February Issue

2019 – April Policy Alert

2018 – August Issue

2016 – July Issue
2014 – December Issue
2014 – August Issue
2010 – June Issue


La Center School District

Adoption Date: March 27, 2007

Revised December 19, 2017, October 23, 2018, August 27, 2019, December 14, 2021, Non-substantive revision 8/22/23