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Student Discipline and Standards of Behavior

This section of the APS Student Code of Conduct outlines Student Discipline and Standards of Behavior.


For purposes of this procedural directive, "in-school suspension" means suspending a student from physical presence in one or more regular classes while requiring the student to spend the time in a designated area at the same school or elsewhere. In-school suspension may include restorative practices and/or instruction. In-school suspensions shall not be counted toward absences from school.

For purposes of this procedural directive, “out-of-school suspension” means a temporary suspension of a student from one or more regular classes, for no more than five (5) days and requiring the student to spend time outside of school. Out-of-school suspension includes all school-related activities. Out-of-school suspensions count toward a student’s chronic absenteeism totals.

For purposes of this procedural directive, "cultural or religious headdresses" includes hijabs, head wraps or other headdresses used as part of an individual's personal cultural or religious beliefs (Section 22-5-4.3 NMSA 1978).

For purposes of this procedural directive, "protective hairstyles" includes hairstyles such as, but is not limited to braids, locs, twists, tight coils or curls, cornrows, bantu knots, afros, weaves, wigs or head wraps (Section 22-5-4.3 NMSA 1978).

For the purposes of this procedural directive, “racialized aggression” is defined as any aggressive act that can be characterized, categorized or that appears as such to be racial in nature, is prohibited. A link to a statewide hotline for reporting such incidents is provided on the district website.

Absenteeism, hair styles and cultural or religious hair, hair coverings or headdresses are not considered student discipline issues.

For the purposes of this procedural directive, “student discipline” is defined as strategies and supports to teach children to develop safe, socially responsible behavior that promotes self-respect and respect for the feelings and property of others. Discipline and punishment are not the same. Discipline is guidance and teaching that promotes positive behavior.

For purposes of this procedural directive, “progressive discipline” aligns with the definition in NMSA 1978 Section 22-35-2(G), and means disciplinary action other than suspension or expulsion from school that is designed to correct and address the basic causes of a student's specific misbehavior while retaining the student in class or in school, or restorative school practices to repair the harm done to relationships and other students from the student's misbehavior, and may include,

  • meeting with the student and the student's parents
  • reflective activities, such as requiring the student to write an essay about the student's misbehavior
  • counseling
  • anger management
  • health counseling or intervention
  • mental health counseling
  • participation in skill building and resolution activities, such as social-emotional cognitive skills building, resolution circles and restorative conferencing
  • community service
  • in-school detention or suspension, which may take place during lunchtime, after school or during weekends

For the purpose of this procedural directive, “social emotional learning” is defined by the Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning (CASEL) as: “the process through which children and adults understand and manage emotions, set and achieve positive goals, feel and show empathy for others, establish and maintain positive relationships, and make responsible decisions.”

For the purpose of this procedural directive, “restorative practices” is defined as: a set of guiding principles for the school community, which sees relationships as central to learning, growth and an inclusive, respectful school culture. Restorative practices focus on building, maintaining, and when necessary, repairing relationships among all members of a school community. Restorative practices are based on relationships, respect, responsibility, repair and reintegration.

 Updated as of July 11, 2023

This page was last updated on: July 26, 2022.