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Long Term Suspension of a Student - October 2010 Revision

Note: This procedural directive was reviewed and revised in March 2011. We provide this revision for historic purposes only. Please refer to the current procedural directive.

For purposes of this procedural directive, “long-term suspension” means the removal of a student from school and all school-related activities for more than ten (10) days, the remainder of the semester or longer as determined by the hearing officer in cases which are near the end of a given semester.

All students have due process procedures available to them under, the APS Student Behavior Handbook. Any student for whom the school is requesting long-term suspension shall have the right to a suspension hearing held before an Albuquerque Public Schools hearing officer, or the superintendent’s designee. Students or their parents/legal guardians may waive the right to a hearing by signing a waiver. School officials may not encourage the signing of waivers by saying or implying that hearing officers are likely to impose more severe discipline than school-based administrators.

Please refer to Albuquerque Public Schools procedural directives regarding special education students for additional information on discipline and suspension of special education students.

The burden of proving that the student violated a provision of the APS Student Behavior Handbook to the degree a student must be suspended shall be the responsibility of school personnel.

Procedure for Long-Term Suspension through the Hearing Process

Parent/legal guardian and student shall be advised of all the charges both orally and in writing a minimum of five (5) days prior to the scheduled hearing. The written notice shall be on the Notice of Discipline and/or Anticipated Temporary or Long-Term Suspension form.

Hearings shall be scheduled through the Hearing Office. Hearings shall be scheduled within ten (10) working days of the notice of discipline being sent to the parents/legal guardians.

If the hearing requires the services of an interpreter, including sign language, the school shall notify the Hearing Office at the time of scheduling the hearing.

The school shall present copies of the following information to the hearing officer during the hearing.

  • A copy of the Notice of Discipline and/or Anticipated Long-Term Suspension form.
  • Report of current grades, current attendance, and class progress reports.
  • Written witness reports, incident reports, and school police reports.
  • Current IEP Team report for special education students that addresses Section IX of the Student Behavior Handbook.

When schools are requesting long-term suspension for reasons of general disruptive conduct, the school also shall provide documentation that the parents/legal guardians were advised of the problem prior to the long-term suspension and what interventions the school attempted to resolve the problem.

A Student Assistance Team shall review reports and/or 504 plan reviews, if applicable.

Copies of all reports shall become part of the official hearing record.  All reports, with the exception of police reports, shall be provided to the parent/legal guardian of the student at least forty-eight hours prior to the hearing.  Failure to provide these documents may result in student reinstatement.

Appeals of the determination of the hearing officers shall be submitted to the superintendent or his/her designee.

Appeals of the determination of the superintendent or his/her designee shall be submitted to the Board of Education.

Procedures for Long-Term Suspension When Parents/Legal Guardians Waive the Right to Hearing

The principal or his/her designee shall advise parents/legal guardians and student of the charges orally and in writing.

School personnel shall advise parents/legal guardians of their right to a hearing. They shall explain the hearing procedure and they shall not state or imply that requesting a hearing will increase the likelihood of a more severe penalty.

School personnel must explain to the parents/legal guardians that the student shall not be permitted to attend any traditional Albuquerque Public School while he/she is suspended.

School personnel shall advise parents/legal guardians of students with an identified disability of the availability of alternative continuation services during the term of the suspension as outlined in the student’s IEP.

Parents/legal guardians shall be required to sign the request to waive the due process hearing for the request to be active.

School personnel shall advise parents/legal guardians and the student regarding possible education alternatives during the term of the suspension.

School personnel shall attach documentation of parent/legal guardian contacts and intervention to a copy of the Notice of Discipline and/or Anticipated Long-Term Suspension form.

Schools shall report to the Student, School and Community Service Center all long-term suspensions on the discipline summary report each  school enrollment reporting period.

Failure to follow this procedural directive may result in reinstatement of the student.

Administrative Position:

  • Assistant Superintendent for School and Community Support

Department Director:

  • Director of Student, School and Community Service Center/Albuquerque Publics School Hearing Officer

References

Legal Cross Ref.:

  • §22-5-4.3 NMSA 1978
  • 6.11.2 NMAC

Board Policy Cross Ref.:

Procedural Directive Cross Ref:

Forms:

NSBA/NEPN Classification: JKD

Revised: May 1995
Revised: April 1996
Revised: June 1997
Reviewed: September 24, 2010
Reviewed: October 11, 2010
Revised: October 15, 2010

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