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Maintaining Professional Staff and Student Boundaries

Maintaining Professional Staff/Student Boundaries

Policy 5253


Paterson School District has set forth this policy is to provide all staff, students, volunteers and community members with information to increase their awareness of their role in protecting children from inappropriate conduct by adults.

The board expects all staff members to maintain the highest professional, moral and ethical standards in their interaction with students. Staff members are required to maintain an atmosphere conducive to learning, through consistently and fairly applied discipline and established and maintained professional boundaries.

The interactions and relationships between staff members and students should be based upon mutual respect and trust, an understanding of the appropriate boundaries between adults and students in and outside of the educational setting, and consistency with the educational mission of the schools.

Staff members will not intrude on a student’s physical and emotional boundaries unless the intrusion is necessary to serve an educational or physical, mental and/or emotional health purpose. An educational purpose is one that relates to the staff member’s duties in the district. Additionally, staff members are expected to be sensitive to the appearance of impropriety in their own conduct and the conduct of other staff when interacting with students. Staff members will discuss issues with their building administrator or supervisor whenever they suspect or are unsure whether conduct is inappropriate or constitutes a violation of this policy.

The board supports the use of technology to communicate for educational purposes. However, district employees are prohibited from inappropriate online socializing or from engaging in any conduct on social networking Web sites that violates the law, district policies or other generally recognized professional standards. Employees whose conduct violates this policy may face discipline and/or termination, consistent with the district’s policies, acceptable use agreement and collective bargaining agreements, as applicable.

The superintendent or designee will develop staff protocols for reporting and investigating allegations and develop procedures and training to accompany this policy.


Legal References

RCW 28A.400.320 Crimes against children — Mandatory termination of classified employees — Appeal — Recovery of salary or compensation by district

RCW 28A.405.470 Crimes against children — Mandatory termination of certificated employees — Appeal — Recovery of salary or compensation by district

RCW 28A.405.475 Termination of certificated employee based on guilty plea or conviction of certain felonies — Notice to superintendent of public instruction - Record of notices

RCW 28A.410.090 Revocation or suspension of certificate or permit to teach — Criminal basis — Complaints — Investigation - Process

RCW 28A.410.095 Violation or noncompliance — Investigatory powers of superintenent of public instruction — Requirements for investigation of alleged sexual misconduct towards a child — Court orders — Contempt — Written findings required

RCW 28A.410.100 Revocation of authority to teach — Hearings

Chapter 181-87 WAC Professional certification — Acts of unprofessional conduct

Chapter 181-88 WAC Definitions of sexual misconduct, verbal and physical abuse - Mandatory disclosure — Prohibited agreements

Last Modified by Francisco J Rangel on February 26, 2014      Prior Revised Dates  12.11 & 02.10