Code of Conduct

Overview of the Student Code of Conduct

The Nishuane School philosophy is based on positive reinforcement. We believe that children can behave appropriately in a climate of warmth and support; the goal of school discipline is to help children become self-directed citizens within a variety of environments and with different people. We believe that expectations for behavior and ways of dealing with misbehavior should be in accord with developmental goals. Clearly defined school rules and classroom procedures with incremental actions and consequences consistently carried out will foster appropriate behavior.

Nishuane School has three school wide rules for consistency within classrooms and throughout the school. These school rules are:

  • We will be safe.
  • We will be kind.
  • We will be respectful.

Positive Behavior with "Bucket-filling"

Nishuane School students are "Bucket-fillers"! As students develop their social skills through their learning experiences and interactions with peers and adults, we emphasize being kind and just through the sharing of good thoughts and feelings. In developing a common language throughout the school, children, faculty and families use vocabulary from the book Have You Filled a Bucket Today? By being kind and just through sharing these good thoughts and feelings, students "fill buckets."

We have incorporated this theme into a school wide positive behavior management system to recognize positive behavior decisions for citizenship at our school. Students' positive behavior decisions are recognized throughout the school - in their classrooms, related arts classes, hallways, cafeteria and recess-with bucket-filling squares, which are put first into class buckets and then into a school wide bucket. Students' positive choices are celebrated in their classrooms by their teachers in various ways. Additionally, each week students from each grade are selected from the school bucket and recognized to share their acts with the whole school. Bucket-fillers celebrate monthly with a "Peaceful Picnic with the Principal" with Ms. McLaughlin.

"Bucket Dipping" Consequences and Actions

While our goal is to have a school community of students and staff who fill each other's buckets, sharing good thoughts and feelings to be kind, respectful and safe, it is not uncommon in elementary school classrooms and buildings for students to "bucket dip." Students are learning during these critical early childhood years how to build and maintain friendships and how to be good citizens simultaneously learning from mistakes in the process.

It is well understood that it is best for children and their class community when the students and teacher solve problems within the classroom community. At Nishuane School, students utilize Apologies of Action to show responsibility for their actions and to demonstrate that they care for one another. The Apology of Action Chart helps teachers to guide class consequences for bucket-dipping behaviors.

Parents are an integral part in helping the school to promote positive behaviors. The home and the school must work together to bring about a positive school experience for the student. Parents will be notified when behaviors that violate our Code of Conduct occur that result in consequences so that the family can work with the school to reduce and eliminate such behaviors.

Code of Conduct Chart

The Code of Conduct Chart will help students, staff and families to understand the expectations for acceptable conduct at Nishuane School. All students are expected to follow the Code of Conduct in a developmentally appropriate manner. Please reach out to the main office for a copy of the Code of Conduct chart.

Code of Conduct Chart
 Behaviors Actions

 Level 1 Level 2 Level 3 Level 4
 Harassment, Intimidation, and Bullying  **      
 Defiance/Disruption X X X X
 Fighting     X X
 Inappropriate Physical Conduct X X X X
Unsafe Behavior X X X X
Teasing/Exclusion X X X X
Theft    X X X
Threats   X X X
Vandalism X X X X

*This rubric is a guideline - The principal has discretion regarding actions as they relate to individual circumstances. Further, in an instance where the behavior may not clearly be listed above, the principal will use their discretion to determine an appropriate action for a particular behavior.

**See specific information re: bullying legislation.

Level One: Infractions on an infrequent basis

  • Conference with teacher/ staff member
  • Teacher selected consequence
  • Teacher contacts parent/ guardian via telephone
  • Record of contact submitted to administration and parent/guardian for signature

Level Two: Repeated infractions

  • In-school parent/guardian conference with teacher/staff member to develop a behavior plan
  • Possible referral to counselor/nurse
  • Teacher selected consequence

Level Three: Continuing infractions or serious infractions

  • Teacher/staff member refers incident to principal
  • Parent/guardian contacted by principal
  • Parent/guardian conference with principal or assistant principal
  • Possible community service or character education project
  • Time out from classroom (working in alternate location)
  • Possible short-term suspension
  • Possible referral to counselor/nurse

Level Four: Infractions that are highly serious or cause imminent danger to self or others

  • Immediate referral to principal
  • Parent/guardian contact
  • Parent/ guardian conference
  • Possible suspension
  • Possible referral to counselor/nurse

*Parents/Guardians will accompany the students back to school for re-admittance once suspension is over.

N.J. Anti-Bullying Bill of Rights Act

The State of N.J. recently enacted the Anti-Bullying Bill of Rights Act, which is intended to:

  • Clarify and strengthen the standards and procedures for preventing, reporting, investigating and responding to incidents of harassment, intimidation, and bullying (HIB) of students that occur on school grounds and off school grounds under specified circumstances
  • Respond to research on the incidence, prevalence and effects of HIB that has emerged since the adoption of the original HIB laws adopted in 2002 and amended in 2007 and 2008
  • Establish clearer standards for the definition of HIB • use and better manage existing resources to increase school safety.
  • use and better manage existing resources to increase school safety
  • reduce the risk of suicide due to HIB

HIB means any gesture, any written, verbal or physical act, or any electronic communication, whether it be a single incident or series of incidents that:

  • is reasonably perceived as being motivated by and actual or perceived characteristic, such as race, color, religion, ancestry, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, or a mental, physical, or sensory disability, or by any other distinguishing characteristic
  • takes place on school property, at any school sponsored function, or off school grounds as provided for in section 16 of P.L. 2010, Chapter 122
  • substantially disrupts or interferes with the orderly operation of the school or the rights of other students
  • a reasonable person should know, under the circumstances, will have the effect of physically or emotionally harming a student or damaging the student's property, or placing a student in reasonable fear of physical or emotional harm to his person or damage to his property
  • has the effect of insulting or demeaning any student or group of students
  • creates a hostile educational environment for the student by interfering with a student's education of by severely or pervasively causing physical or emotional harm to the student

School staff must follow the statutory procedures for all reported HIB incidents and protect students.  A reporting procedure is in place to promptly investigate reports of violations and complaints related to HIB.  The investigation will be initiated by the principal or the principal's designee within one day of the report of the incident and shall be conducted by the school anti-bullying specialist.  The principal may appoint additional personnel to assist in the investigation.

**Please refer to our District website for information re: Anti-Bullying legislation- definitions, consequences, procedures, etc.

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