Eastside Prep Code of Conduct
Eastside Prep relies on positive student conduct. The advanced learning environment appreciated by teachers and students alike is only possible with mature, responsible behavior on the part of all participants. EPS specifically recognizes respect as a key “ingredient” in this endeavor. Specifically, five points of respect are identified as listed below:
- The Learning Environment
Students are expected to refer consciously to these points of respect in all aspects of EPS life. More specific rules do exist and will be covered later in this section. No list of rules, regardless of length, can cover every situation and circumstance. When an existing rule does not apply directly to a specific situation, we expect that students are able to consider their actions carefully and thoughtfully apply these principles of respect. Further, at EPS, trust is a valued part of our environment, and as such, there is an effort not to overwhelm anyone with a long list of rules.
Academic Honor System
Students are expected to act with honor and responsibility in all areas, and in no place is this more important than the academic arena. Eastside Prep courses are characterized by a cooperative and trusting relationship between teacher and student. That relationship can exist only when students work with honor and integrity. Students are required to be truthful in their words and actions. Further, it is each student’s responsibility to encourage the same conduct from their fellow students.
While there are other possible honor offenses, one of the most egregious in schools is plagiarism. Plagiarism is an honor offense that involves both stealing and cheating. To plagiarize is defined by the Cambridge on-line dictionary as “to use another person’s idea or a part of their work and pretend that it is your own.” (http://dictionary.cambridge.org/define.asp?key=60393&dict=CALD)
Some plagiarism offenses are obvious. Copying whole papers or even small sections directly are examples. It is vital that students understand even when the words of another are changed, if the idea remains intact, then presenting this work as your own, without citation of the original work is plagiarism. This remains true whether a student intends to deceive or not. EPS will be vigilant about guarding against plagiarism, including using outside resources to check students’ work for originality.
Use of Outside Resources
Teachers may assess students using a range of practices, including tests and quizzes. Teachers will state as part of the written instructions what resources can be used. Regardless of the setting, and often with little supervision, we trust students to complete assessments using only resources (including collaboration with peers) explicitly allowed by the teacher. Use of resources not explicitly permitted will be considered a breach of the EPS Academic Honor commitment, and subject to consequences outlined below.
In cases of suspected Academic Honor violations, the charges will be brought to the Upper School Head. The Upper School Head will inform the student under suspicion and conduct an inquiry as necessary to investigate the charges. If it is concluded by Eastside Prep that an offense has occurred, the Upper School Head will recommend the penalty in consultation with the Head of School whose decision is final. Consequences for a first offense range from academic and disciplinary penalties to suspension or expulsion depending on the severity of the Academic Honor violation. A second honor offense at any time in the course of a student’s Upper School career increases the risk of expulsion. The imposition of any consequences is at the sole discretion of the Head of School and students are not entitled to any compulsory hearing or grievance process. The Head of School reserves all rights to enforce academic policies as if those rights were expressly set forth in this handbook.
Helping students grow and mature intellectually and socially is central to Eastside Preparatory School’s purpose as a school. Inevitably, students will need to be corrected regarding their behavior. The primary purpose of each disciplinary action is to help students learn and grow. Smaller disciplinary actions are not publicly shared, either internally or with outside audiences.
In some cases, actions reach a level requiring a more severe consequence of either suspension or expulsion. In these rare cases, EPS will report the offense and penalty to colleges as part of the school’s standard Secondary School Report (SSR). EPS will also update colleges with any change in disciplinary status throughout the senior year.
While EPS will report these disciplinary events, we will also work to help students through the process. Generally, students do best in advocating for themselves by self-reporting to colleges. Taking responsibility for one’s actions is exactly the maturity EPS seeks to develop in our students. Not surprisingly, this is exactly what colleges hope to see in those who matriculate. The college counseling staff, along with the Upper School Head, will support students through these steps and will serve as advocates for their future.
Conduct Outside EPS
In the event that a student’s behavior outside the community—and beyond the jurisdiction of the school regarding disciplinary response—reflects negatively on the reputation of the school or negatively impacts another member of the community, the Head of School reserves the right to review the student’s standing in the community. The decision about the action to be taken rests with the Head of School, and ranges from simple censure to expulsion. This policy includes online behavior as well as cyber-bullying, whether between EPS community members, or from community members about EPS.
Students whose behavior demonstrates serious or recurring disregard for the spirit of the rules and expectations of Eastside Preparatory School, or who demonstrate the inability to adhere to said expectations, may be placed on Disciplinary Probation. Disciplinary Probation typically triggers measures to help the student regain good standing. The first step is a meeting with the student, parents/guardians, Advisor, Learning Support staff and Upper School Head to identify areas of success and challenge, and to develop a plan for the upcoming trimester. The decision to offer a re-enrollment contract for students on Disciplinary Probation and the timing of such an offer will be considered on a case-by-case basis.
At EPS, all of us have the right to expect that we will be accepted and respected by our peers and teachers.
Verbal teasing or bullying is harassment and will not be tolerated in any form.
Any form of harassment, including sexual harassment, whether verbal, physical, or visual, is a violation of respect and strictly prohibited. All individuals have the right to be allowed to work and study in an environment free from harassment and unwelcome sexual overtures.
Sexual harassment refers to behavior that is not welcome, personally offensive, or undermines or weakens morale. Sexual harassment may include such conduct as (1) demands for sexual favors, (2) pressure for sexual activity, (3) offensive, unwanted, physical contact such as hugging, patting, pinching, or constant brushing against another’s body, or (4) offensive or unwanted sexually-suggestive verbal teasing, joking, or abuse.
If an individual becomes aware of harassment of any kind, whether it be specific and personal or general (undermining our culture of respect rather than directed at a specific person), the student should communicate immediately with a member of the faculty, staff, or administration of the school. Any such complaint must be specific and should include all relevant information so that the school may conduct a thorough investigation. All faculty and staff are required to report such complaints to the Head of School. The school will investigate the complaint. Upon conclusion of the investigation, the school will take action to remedy the situation. The school will not tolerate any retaliation against a student who files a complaint or participates in an investigation of another’s complaint. However, anyone who makes a false claim of harassment will be subject to disciplinary action, up to and including expulsion.