ISAAC L. SOWERS MIDDLE SCHOOL
2022 - 2023
9300 Indianapolis Avenue
Huntington Beach, CA 92646
Front Office: 714-962-7738
Attendance: 714-962-7738 x5082
Office Hours: 7:30am - 3:30pm
School Loop: www.isms.schoolloop.com
Social Media (Twitter, Instagram, FB): @SowersVikingsHB
Principal: Dr. Renee Polk Johnson
Asst. Principal: Jeff Smith
Asst. Principal: Michelle Brady
this planner belongs to:
Name: _____________________________________ Student ID#: _______________________
Address: _____________________________________ Phone: _______________________
Isaac L. Sowers Middle School offers this Student Handbook to help facilitate student planning and support communication between the school while also outlining school policies and procedures. It is the responsibility of each student and parent(s)/guardian(s) to read this handbook to ensure that they are aware and understand school rules and procedures. Daily use of this planner (handed out to sixth graders) enables parent(s)/guardian(s) to stay current with student assignments, to communicate with their student’s teachers, and to encourage their child with his/her pursuit of excellence. Current school news and information is updated on the Sowers Middle School website and via emails, phone messages, and posts on social media. Information included in this handbook is subject to change and those changes (if applicable) will be communicated.
Huntington Beach City School District
Home/School Compact Agreement
The following is an agreement among the staff, parents, and students of Sowers Middle School.. To ensure success for all students, we have developed this agreement and expect that all participants will uphold their commitments to the fullest. Please review this agreement and return it with appropriate signatures to your child’s teacher.
Staff Pledge: To help each student meet or exceed the state’s high academic standards, I agree to carry out the following responsibilities to the best of my ability:
❏ Provide high-quality curriculum and instruction
❏ Communicate regularly with families about student progress through conferences, parent-teacher meetings, progress reports, and other available means
❏ Provide reasonable opportunities for parents to volunteer and participate in their child’s class, and to observe classroom activities
❏ Endeavor to motivate my students to learn
❏ Maintain high expectations and help every child develop a love of learning
❏ Provide a warm, safe, and caring learning environment
❏ Provide meaningful, daily homework assignments to reinforce and extend learning in accordance with Board Policy ❏ Participate in professional development activities that improve teaching and learning and that support the formation of partnerships with families and the community
❏ Participate actively in collaborative decision making
❏ Work consistently with families and my school colleagues to make the school an accessible and welcoming place for students and their families
❏ Respect the school, students, staff and families
Student Pledge: To help myself succeed in school, I agree to carry out the following responsibilities to the best of my ability: ❏ Come to school ready to learn and work hard
❏ Bring necessary materials, complete all class assignments, and return completed homework
❏ Know and follow school and classroom rules
❏ Ask for help when I need it
❏ Communicate regularly with my parents and teachers about school experiences so that they can help me be successful in school, including giving my parents or adults in my home all notices and information received by me from my school
❏ Limit and monitor my TV watching and use of technology
❏ Read every day outside of school time for at least 15 minutes (Kindergarten-2nd grade) or 30 minutes (3rd-8th grades) ❏ Respect the school, classmates, staff and families
Family/Parent Pledge: To help my child meet or exceed the state’s high academic standards, I agree to carry out the following responsibilities to the best of my ability:
❏ Communicate the importance of education and learning to my child
❏ Provide a quiet time and place for homework
❏ Monitor my child’s TV viewing and use of technology
❏ Read to my child or encourage my child to read every day outside of school
❏ Communicate with the teacher or the school when I have a concern
❏ Ensure that my child attends school on time every day, and gets adequate sleep, regular medical attention and proper nutrition ❏ Regularly monitor my child's progress in school
❏ Participate in activities at school, such as Back to School Night, Parent-Teacher Conferences, Open House, school decision making meetings and/or volunteering
❏ Respect the school, staff, students, and families
_______________________________________________________________ _______________________________ Student Date
_______________________________________________________________ _______________________________ Teacher Date
_______________________________________________________________ _______________________________ Parent/Guardian Date
HBCSD 2022-2023 CALENDAR
WELCOME TO SOWERS MIDDLE SCHOOL
HOME OF THE VIKINGS!
Isaac L. Sowers’ students will experience an academically challenging and supportive learning environment which will promote the realization of all students’ full potential.
● Our dedicated and knowledgeable staff recognizes the developmental uniqueness of the middle school
child and demonstrates a commitment to foster the conditions necessary for student achievement.
● A nurturing, learning environment is one that is inviting, safe, purposeful, and conducive to learning.
● The supportive structure and schedule are organized to promote meaningful professional collaboration, with a focus on learning and providing access for all students. Teams are viewed as the building blocks for a strong Professional Learning Community. We place a high priority on protecting instructional and collaborative planning time, maintaining reasonable class sizes, and providing supportive student services during the regular school day.
● Sowers’ standards-based curriculum will provide a core curriculum that can be enriched, extended, or differentiated to meet the individual learning needs of students. Education in the fine and practical arts, physical education, and language are valued as integral parts of the instructional program. We will provide a standards-based learning environment which clearly establishes criteria for subject mastery and identifies what students will know and be able to do as a result of completing the instructional program.
● Staff focus is based on best practices of instruction. We will develop and implement a wide array of strategies to optimize student learning. Technology will be integrated into the instructional process as a means to achieve specific curricular objectives. We value an ongoing process of vertical and horizontal articulation with our elementary and high school colleagues to ensure a continuum of instruction.
● The clarity of assessment goals and practices will employ a variety of methods to measure the learning progress of every student. Teachers, in collaboration with their department, will develop consistent grading practices in support of the instructional program. Assessment information will be used to guide the learning process, refine instructional plans, and inform parents of students’ academic progress.
● Sowers Middle School emphasizes active participation and promotes student participation in co-curricular programs. The middle school years offer students their first real opportunity to enjoy a range of extracurricular activities, engage in an exploratory study, and participate in the performing arts. We recognize the potential of these programs to enhance the health and fitness of young adolescents, improve academic performance, and build positive links between school, families, and the local community.
The following school rules and guidelines are designed to promote student safety and teach traits for future success. We are confident that, when our students follow “The ISMS Way,” they will be successful in middle school, high school, and beyond. We are looking forward to a great year!
The ISMS Way!
Sowers Middle School Bell Schedule 2022-2023
All policies in this handbook are subject to change due to California Department of Health and/or Orange County Health Care Agency guidance and/or other state/federal/local guidance for public schools.
SOWERS STUDENT EXPECTATIONS: INTEGRITY
Sowers students demonstrate integrity by coming to school prepared to learn and adhering to the Academic Honesty Policy. At Sowers, we believe that a sound educational program must insist upon academic honesty. We expect Sowers’ students to display personal integrity and self-respect. Students should understand that learning to prepare for an exam is as important as the material being covered. The final value of one’s education is what is learned and not what grade a student receives. Grades mean little when cheating is accepted. Assisting someone else to cheat is no different than cheating yourself.
Be Prepared to Learn:
● Attend every class, every day and on time.
● Know and follow classroom rules.
● Bring a backpack that contains your materials to every class, every day (materials may include: planner, notebook, lined paper,
pens & pencils, ruler, highlighter, etc.).
● Wear appropriate apparel for PE classes (includes PE uniform, appropriate shoes)
● Complete work assigned in every class, every day.
● Complete homework and projects to the best of your ability when assigned and turn these in on time.
● Participate in class discussions (raise your hand to answer questions, focus on the lesson, take notes and review them for clarification, etc.)
● Seek assistance from a classmate, aide, teacher, or tutor when you do not understand the assignment, concept, homework,
● Have a good attitude about learning. Persevere when you do not first understand something. Start with what you know. Some examples of violations of Sowers’ Academic Honesty Policy:
● Copying from another student’s assignment or test.
● Using a “cheat” sheet or other external assistance (that isn’t authorized by a teacher)
● Stealing or borrowing without expressed teacher permission of a test, quiz, and/or other confidential documents.
● Making a copy, in part or in whole, of a confidential document, including but not limited to, taking a picture of a test/quiz.
● Discussing if an answer on a test or quiz is right or wrong, when directed not to talk to each other.
● Using a paper written for one class, in another class, without teacher permission.
● Creating false data for bibliography.
● Borrowing a study sheet or object with answers and copying them as one’s own work.
● Plagiarism: Copying word for word in part or in whole from a source without giving proper credit to the author. This includes
electronic sources and/or services found on the internet.
● Turning in someone else’s work, in part or in whole, including but not limited to, erasing/deleting someone else’s name and
substituting it for your own.
● Forgery of a parent or guardian signature on a school document.
● Using a cell phone to text answers/get answers to a test (that isn’t authorized by a teacher)
● Unauthorized collaboration: working with another student on a project assignment, homework, test, etc. without expressed
permission from the teacher. This also includes but is not limited to lending or showing your paper and/or assignment to
another student for any reason without the expressed permission from the teacher.
● Successful or unsuccessful attempt to solicit another in violating Sowers’ Academic Honesty Policy.
● In any way attempting or planning to engage in a violation of Sowers’ Academic Honesty Policy.
● In any way assisting another student with a violation of Sowers’ Academic Honesty Policy.
We believe that excellence, service, creativity, positive contributions, and innovation should be noticed, publicized, and rewarded. Our focus is on building and expanding as opposed to restraining, controlling, limiting, and inhibiting. The following Positive Reinforcement Programs are available to you. Positive reinforcement programs include, but are not limited to:
1. Viking/Character Trait of the Month- It is the intent of Sowers’ Staff to provide as many students as possible with the experience of being recognized in front of their peers for positive growth, experiences, and achievements. Character of the Month students receive a Certificate of Merit, a coupon to a local eatery and a Character Counts sticker.
2. VIKcoin: This is our digital currency related to our positive behavior program (The ISMS Way). Students can earn Vikcoin by displaying positive behavior. VikCoin can then be used around campus to purchase items at events, raffle drawings, and the student store.
3. Honor Roll- Positive recognition and certificates of achievement are provided to students who achieve a 3.4 - 3.79 GPA. Honor Roll is given quarterly and students must also meet the requirement of Satisfactory (S) or Outstanding (O) marks in citizenship and work habits.
4. Distinguished Honor Roll- Positive recognition and certificates of achievement are provided to students who achieve a 3.8 to 4.0 grade point average quarterly for 6th, 7th, and 8th grade, have only S or O marks in citizenship and work habits. End of Year DHR Field Trip: students who obtain a 3.8 GPA or above, along with S or O in citizenship and work habits, for the first three quarters of the school year, will be eligible to attend.
At the end of the school year, Sowers holds its annual Viking Awards Night (6th, 7th and 8th grade ceremonies). Students are recognized for various achievements including, but not limited to the following: Outstanding Students, Viking of the Year, Distinguished Honor Roll, 4.0 GPA for all three years, Pillar of Excellence in Character, and Super Viking (8th grade students only). Promoting 8th grade students are also able to earn the Presidential Education Award by finishing their middle school career with a 3.5 GPA or higher for all three years at Sowers and high marks on standardized testing. These students are also recognized at the Viking Awards. Finally, the 8th grade student with the highest overall GPA and who shows tremendous character/leadership in their promoting class receives the HBCSD Board of Trustees’ Award (which is presented at 8th Grade Promotion).
VIDEO TAPING OR PHOTOGRAPHY
Using technology to video tape, digitally record, audio record or photograph in the classroom, on the campus or inside of any building is not allowed. Any person using technology inappropriately and/or without consent will be disciplined by the school and the incident may be reported to the Huntington Beach Police Department. Please note that students who actively video any students or students engaged in an altercation will be subject to progressive discipline.
Sowers is proud to offer the following competitive sports programs: volleyball, track, cross country, soccer, surfing, and basketball. In order to participate in Sowers Athletics students must meet the school activities criteria listed above. Please note that any student who becomes ineligible for participation during a sport season will not be refunded for any voluntary participation costs associated with playing the sport. Also, it is expected that students are on their best behavior and adhere to all school rules at all events on the Sowers campus or when visiting other schools.
Girls Basketball (September-November)
Boys Volleyball (September-November)
Surf Club (October - End of Year)
Surf Team (November- End of Year)
Girls Volleyball (November-February)
Boys Basketball (November-February)
Cross Country (December-February)
Boys & Girls Soccer (March- April)
Track and Field (April-June)
*Eligibility is based on grades and behavior and an after school sports release of liability form is required in order to try out.
All sports are tryout based except Cross Country.*
Brett Mouw (email@example.com ) - Sowers Athletic Director
SCHOOL ACTIVITIES ELIGIBILITY
All students are encouraged to participate in school-sponsored events and activities. Please be advised that activities are a privilege, and to be eligible to participate, students, in the preceding quarter, must:
● maintain a minimum 2.0 GPA
● maintain satisfactory attendance
● not have any “U’’’s or more than one “N” in citizenship or work habits (CORE is considered 1 mark)
● not have had any severe disciplinary incidents (ie., suspension(s) during the current quarter
Students that are in jeopardy of receiving a “U” and/or an “N” on a report card will receive notification from their teacher via a progress report.
In addition, students must attend school on the day of an event in order to participate in any school sponsored events. An alternative assignment including the same material will be provided for students not eligible for a field trip. The school administration reserves the right to remove a student from participation in a school-sponsored event or activity at any time.
PARTICIPATION IN PROMOTION ACTIVITIES
Students are eligible to participate in promotion activities & receive a promotion certificate if the following criteria are met during a student’s 8th grade year:
● Have a cumulative GPA of 1.7 or higher.
● Have less than 10 unexcused absences.
● Not be on a SARB contract that stipulates attendance as a “condition of promotion.”
● Not be on a behavior contract during time of events/activities
● Negative behavior points (demerits) do not exceed 19
During the last quarter of school an 8th grade student suspended from school and/or involved in a severe disciplinary incident may lose their privilege of attending the end of the year 8th grade trip and/or the ability to participate in the Promotion Ceremony. Students not attending the 8th grade trip and/or Promotion are required to be in attendance at school on those days. Failure to attend school for any reason other than an excused absence may result in the loss of the privilege of participating in the 8th grade Promotion Ceremony. Eighth grade students who meet Sowers Middle School’s and the Huntington Beach City School District’s academic and behavioral standards may participate in 8th grade/promotion events.
PERSONAL COMMUNICATIONS/ENTERTAINMENT DEVICES/DIGITAL DEVICES
Students may bring an electronic device (cell phone, cellular phone watches, earbuds, air pods, tablets, gaming devices, etc…) to Sowers Middle School but the device(s) must be turned off and in the students’ backpack from the first bell to dismissal. If a student chooses to violate this policy, progressive discipline will be applied as follows:
● 1st Offense: confiscation of device, notification of violation to parent/guardian, student pick up in office after dismissal, plus demerit
● 2nd Offense: confiscation of device, notification of violation to parent/guardian, parent/guardian pick up in office after dismissal, lunch or after-school detention, plus demerits
● 3rd Offense: confiscation of device, notification of violation to parent/guardian, parent/guardian pick up after dismissal, parent-student conference with an administrator, multiple lunch or after-school detention, student electronic device drop off in office before school for pick up after school, plus demerits.
● Subsequent offenses: Progressive discipline on a case-by-case basis as determined by administration/demerits
It is recommended that students do not bring valuable items to school as there is the possibility that such items may be lost or stolen. As noted previously, the school is not responsible to recover or to pay for any item that is lost or stolen while on school grounds. If you do have an item lost or stolen while at school, please come to the office to make a report for documentation purposes.
Morning announcements are read daily over the intercom system during first period and/or homeroom. Students are responsible for keeping themselves informed about all school activities by listening to the information in the bulletin.
SOWERS STUDENT EXPECTATIONS: SAFETY
(PC 627.2, HBMC 9.20.040) Isaac Sowers Middle School is a closed campus and students may not leave the campus for any reason without signed parent permission.
INJURY & ILLNESS
If an illness or injury occurs after a student arrives at school, he/she is to report to his/her teacher and then to the office. A health clerk is available and the school office will attend to the student.
Under California law, when prescribed medication that must be given during school hours, the Parent/Guardian and Physician Request for Medication form must be signed by both the physician and parent and kept on file in the Sowers health office.
ALLERGY/MEDICAL HEALTH CARE PLAN
Please contact the school office to identify any student allergies or special medical needs.
All visitors must check in at the office, obtain a visitor’s badge, and wear this badge visibly while on campus. Visitors without a visitor’s badge will be escorted to the office to obtain a pass and/or be asked to leave the campus. Violation of the visitor policy will be reported to the Huntington Beach Police Department as trespassing. Students from other schools are not allowed to accompany or visit Sowers students/staff. School administration reserves the right to remove and/or prohibit visitors from campus.
Per Board Policy 5021, HBCSD recognizes the right of parents/guardians to be involved in the education of their children and desires to balance that right with the district’s need to ensure the safety of students while at school. As such, the parent/guardian who enrolls a child shall be presumed to be the child’s custodial parent/guardian and shall be held responsible for the child’s welfare. School officials shall presume that both parents/guardians have equal rights regarding their child, including, but not limited to, picking the student up after school or otherwise removing the student from school, accessing student records, participating in school activities, or visiting the school. When a court order restricts access to the child or to his/her student information, a parent/guardian shall provide a copy of the certified court order to the school upon enrollment or upon a change in circumstances.
Students must adhere to the following transportation rules for use of bicycles, skateboards, scooters, or roller/inline skates. All motorized versions (electric or gas powered) are prohibited.
● All Sowers students are expected to wear an approved helmet and have it buckled properly while riding to and from school. If a helmet is not worn, students will not be allowed to ride the transportation to or from school.
● Yield right of way to pedestrians.
● Transportation must be walked while on school grounds and the sidewalks up to and across crossing areas.
● Transportation must be put inside the bicycle racks and individually locked. You may not lock bikes together.
● The transportation racks will remain locked during the school day.
● The school does not accept responsibility for transportation that is damaged or stolen.
● In order to obtain lunch, students need to know their student number to use the lunch system. Parents may load money onto a student’s account online using the district website at www.hbcsd.us. Free lunch is available daily and snacks are available for purchase daily
● Students will get their lunch first and then sit at a lunch table in the Mall area. (subject to change)
● Students will remain seated until given permission by staff to go outside. Typically, students are released to go outside within 15-20 minutes of the start of the lunch period (subject to change)
● Students are only allowed to purchase snacks during their scheduled lunch time.
● Students are not allowed to purchase lunch with an outside entity (Door Dash, Uber Eats, etc)
SOWERS STUDENT EXPECTATIONS: MAKE RESPONSIBLE CHOICES
GUM, CANDY AND FOOD
Gum is NOT allowed on campus. Food is allowed only in the mall lunch area during lunch. Students may not sell drinks, candy, or any other food item at all on campus.
Students are responsible to remember to bring items (i.e. homework, lunch, instruments, clothes, etc.) they need throughout the school day. If there is an occasion when parents must drop off an item for his/her student, please bring the item to the baskets outside the school office and place it in the designated school drop off area during the school day. Students are responsible for checking for items and picking up items that are left in the designated school drop off area. To minimize classroom interruptions, students will not be notified of deliveries. Sowers staff will not assume responsibility for supervision and/or distribution of items. Any perishable items left in the school drop off area will be disposed of daily.
PE LOCKERS -
● Locker combinations must not be given out to any other students or shared.
● The combination of the locker and its contents are the student's responsibility.
● Opening another student's locker may result in suspension from school and/or the loss of locker privileges.
● No special locks are permitted.
● Valuables and personal items should not be stored in lockers.
● The administration retains the right to inspect student lockers per HBCSD Board Policy 5145.12 that states: “As necessary to
protect the health and welfare of students and staff, school officials may search students, their property, and/or district property
under their control and may seize illegal, unsafe, or otherwise prohibited items”
● Please note that the school district and school are not responsible for items damaged, lost, or stolen.
PERSONAL PROPERTY POLICY
Students are discouraged from bringing to school any personal property that is not directly related to their instructional program. The school is not responsible for any student’s personal property or amount of money that is lost, stolen, or items damaged at school.
All students are provided a Sowers I.D. card which must be carried with them at all times. If a student needs a replacement ID card they can obtain one in the front office for $5.
LOST AND FOUND
If you lose an item while at school, check for it at the Lost and Found rack in the lunch area. All articles found should be turned in to the office immediately.
REPORTING AN ABSENCE (714-962-7738 x5082)
Attendance is taken each period of the day. Students absent for any reason are required to bring a note or to contact the Attendance Office the following day, signed by a parent explaining the reason for the absence. A parent phone call to the Attendance Office at (714) 962.7738 ext. 5082 is also encouraged on the day of the student’s absence.
Parent calls/notes for absences should include: The date of the absence; The first and last name of the student; The reason for the absence; The parent’s name/signature.
ABSENCE-RELATED MAKE-UP WORK
The student is responsible for obtaining make-up work from the teachers and for following each teacher’s make-up policy. Parents are encouraged to request homework through Canvas or by emailing the teacher directly.
STUDENT RELEASE/CHECK -OUTS
Students will be released only to a parent or guardian as noted in school records. When students must leave, parents are to meet students in the front office to sign them out. Emergency contacts are not allowed to pick up students in non-emergency situations during school hours. When special circumstances do occur, school administration reserves the right to deny a student release due to an abundance of caution and to ensure student safety.
TRANSPORTATION TO SCHOOL
Parents that transport students to and from school are requested to obey all parking regulations and school regulations regarding the drop off and pick up of students. Driving that puts students and others in danger may be reported to the police by administration. Additionally, handicap spots are strictly to be used by parents with the appropriate placard/sign. Please drive around the back parking lot to make drop offs in the designated areas. For the safety of students and the flow of traffic, we ask that you make a right turn as you exit the back parking lot to assist with the flow of traffic. To ensure safe drop off/pick up procedures, allow ample time before school/after school, use one way in/out of the parking lot, follow the directions of the crossing guards, carpool, walk, or ride a bike whenever possible. Please do not park or idle in red zones, the staff parking lot, or in staff parking spaces.
EXCUSED/UNEXCUSED ABSENCES AND TARDIES
Excused absences/tardies include the following: illness, medical appointments, or death in the immediate family. California law states that absences are excused only if the child is ill or there is an excuse which meets the requirements of Education Code Section 48205. Regular attendance is essential to school success. Students are not allowed to participate in after school activities if they have been absent on the same day.
Tardy (definition) A student is considered tardy when he/she is not in his/her seat when the class (start of period) bell rings. Attendance (including absences and tardies) are taken each class period and are calculated towards Perfect Attendance and used for disciplinary purposes per semester and totaled by class/period. Students arriving anytime after the school day has started must report to the attendance window in the office prior to reporting to class. Students that have multiple tardies in a class may be addressed by the teacher’s classroom management/discipline expectations, which may include warnings, deducting points from citizenship grade, teacher assigned detention, parent contact, and/or conference. Six (6) or more tardies may also result in lunch and/or after school detentions.
Excessive Absences are characterized as excused absences calculated as missing 10% of school days. Excessive absences are subject to referral to school administration to determine a support plan to increase student attendance. A Doctor’s note will be required for absences once a student misses 10% of the school year.
Truancy Education Code Section 48260 defines truant as a pupil (student) who has three (3) unexcused absences in one school year or tardy or absence for more than a 30-minute period during the school day without a valid excuse on three occasions in one school year, or any combination thereof, and will be reported to the School Attendance Review Board (SARB).
HBCSD has determined that any of the following absences will be addressed by the school administration:
● 3 or more unexcused absences
● 10 or more excused absences
● 3 or more OVER 30 minute tardies
● 6 or more UNDER 30 minute tardies
● 6 or more PERIOD tardies
● 1 or more “ditching” period/day long truancies
Parent/School/Student Attendance Responsibilities:
● Students should attend school daily and on time
● Students should be in their seat and ready to work and on time for each period.
● Students are to leave campus at the day’s end and go directly home or to other supervised arrangements.
● Parents/guardians are responsible to have their child attend school daily.
● Parents/guardians should not send their child to school if he/she has a temperature of 100 degrees or more, has a
communicable disease, has discharge of the eyes/ears, diarrhea, vomiting, persistent cough or rash, rash with fever or behavior
change, mouth sores, or requires more care than what the staff can provide without compromising the health and safety of the
STUDENT ATTENDANCE REVIEW BOARD (SARB)
The SARB process begins when the school site identifies a student attendance and/or behavioral concern. The school will provide possible interventions at the site level before being referred to the district office. If site level interventions have not brought about a change in student attendance/behavior, a district SARB Meeting will be held and in some cases referral and/or prosecution by the Orange County District Attorney.
INTERDISTRICT TRANSFER AGREEMENTS
Students who live outside the boundaries of HBCSD are on an annual interdistrict transfer agreement. Agreements can be revoked as stipulated in the interdistrict transfer agreement. Attendance, academic performance, and behavior are all used to review continuance and approval of interdistrict transfer agreements.
SOWERS STUDENT EXPECTATIONS: SHOW RESPECT
It is the policy of this school that all students, staff, and visitors shall be treated with respect and feel comfortable attending school. The harassment of others based on sexual, religious, racial, or other malicious intent, will not be tolerated and will result in disciplinary action. If at any time you feel uncomfortable in dealing with other students or adults, please contact an adult who will help you deal with the situation.
DRESS AND GROOMING
The Governing Board believes that appropriate dress and grooming contribute to a productive learning environment. Students must wear clothes that are suitable for safe participation in school activities. The following Standards of Dress have been designed to support a safe school environment that is free from distraction yet, at the same time, sensitive to the styles of the time. Any type of clothing or accessory that disrupts the learning environment, advertises or advocates sex (or sexual images), alcohol, smoking, drugs, gangs, profanity, weapons, and/or violence, may not be worn at school or school events.
The following guidelines have been established in order to promote student safety and guidance in the choice of dress by our students. Violations of these Standards of Dress will result in progressive discipline. Students may also be required to change into their P.E. clothes/shoes. If those are not available, a parent must bring appropriate attire for the child for the day.
RECOMMENDED STANDARDS OF DRESS AND GROOMING
1. Blouses and shirts must cover a student’s stomach at all times and must not expose the back, nor have excessive skin showing in the case of sleeveless athletic jerseys. Undergarments must not show. No spaghetti straps 2. Avoid wearing dangerously long pants or loose-fitting clothing. Pants must be worn at a level that avoids the exposing of undergarments or skin. Clothing that is skin tight is not appropriate for students to wear at school.
3. Dresses, skirts and shorts must be of an appropriate length to avoid exposing undergarments, or creating a distraction. An appropriate dress/skirt/shorts length is defined as being the length of arms down to fingertips, when fully extended to the sides of the leg. In other words, when asked to place your hands to your side, your longest finger should touch material, not skin.
4. Clothing that has the appearance of being lingerie (undergarments) or pajamas may not be worn at school. 5. P.E. clothes should be worn for P.E.
1. Hats may be worn outside school buildings only or during P.E. classes. Hats are to be removed when inside classrooms, the halls, the mall, and/or the administration office. Bandanas are not appropriate as head-wear and may not be worn on top of your head at school, or at school functions.
2. If you wear a hooded sweatshirt to school, the hood must be removed while on school grounds
1. Shoes should be secured to the foot. Sandals may be worn, but must have a strap that secures to the heel and must be closed toe. Shoes that provide protection and foot support are appropriate for school.
2. Steel toed shoes and boots, shoes with rollers, and shoes with heels are not allowed at school.
3. Slippers are not acceptable to wear to school.
1. Belts that are excessively long, as well as large belt buckles, are not appropriate for school.
2. Wallet chains, large bracelets, spiked jewelry, large chains, and other such jewelry that are a safety concern should not be worn at school.
Makeup and Hair Styles
1. Extreme hairstyles and make-up that cause a distraction to the learning environment are not appropriate for school Sowers Social Media Behavior Pledge
The purpose of this contract is to ensure Sowers students treat others with respect. This pledge is simply intended to serve as a reminder of online etiquette expectations. It is intended to help prevent students from making poor decisions when accessing social media.
General Social Media Guidelines:
Be aware of what you post online. Social media sites of any sort are very public and all that you put online leaves a digital footprint for all to see that does not go away. Do not post anything you wouldn’t want friends, classmates, parents, teachers, and/ or a future employer to see.
1. Cyber-bullying is any online posting or electronic communication (including pictures) sent by instant messenger, email, texting, website, social networking site (Facebook, Instagram), interactive game, cell phone or other interactive device that is intended to scare, embarrass, harass, target or threaten another person.
2. A one-time comment or insult is usually not considered cyber-bullying. It becomes cyber-bullying when there are repeated rude or vulgar comments, public postings or threats of bodily harm.
3. Other examples: text wars, starting or promoting rumors, impersonating another person by creating a fake profile or using someone else’s password to create posts or send inappropriate messages.
● How you represent yourself online is an extension of yourself, it is not a way to hide behind a false identity to harm others. Use the golden rule; treat others as you would want to be treated.
● Assembly Bill 86 – Amended Section 48900 of the California Education Code (January, 2009) The new law will give schools authority to suspend or expel students for bullying fellow students over the Internet, in text-messaging or by other electronic means during non-school hours when it becomes a significant disruption at school. Assembly Bill 86 adds cyber-bullying to school disciplinary codes that previously defined bullying only in terms of direct physical or verbal harassment.
● California Senate Bill 1411, Penal Code section 528.5 (January, 2011) Impersonating another person by use of the internet, email, online forums or social media to harass, embarrass, slander, threaten or harm someone. The penalties can be a fine up to $1000 and/or a year in jail.
● California Penal Code 653m Intentionally annoying via telephone or electronic communication. Including obscene language or threat of injury to person or property.
Sowers Student Social Media Pledge:
● I agree not to bully anyone online or via cell phone as outlined in Sections 1-3 above.
● I will provide access to all online accounts to my parents/guardian. This includes all email accounts, Apps, social media sites and instant messaging/text accounts.
● I understand that social media is a privilege and I will act responsibly.
● I will not respond to any media that is mean spirited. If I get an inappropriate message, I will notify my parents and/or the school immediately.
● I will be a good online citizen and will not cyberbully which is against the law.
● I will not send, receive and/or download email, text or images containing sexually explicit, pornographic or offensive material.
● I will not publish defamatory and/or knowingly false material about my schoolmates, friends and/or relatives on social networking sites, blogs, “wikis” or any online publishing format.
It is the goal of Sowers administration and staff to provide a safe learning environment that is free from physical and emotional harm. Per Board Policy 5132, “No individual or group shall, through physical, written, verbal, or other means, harass, sexually harass, threaten, intimidate, retaliate, cyberbully, cause bodily injury to, or commit hate violence against any student or school personnel.”
CARE OF TEXTBOOKS AND/OR CHROMEBOOKS POLICY
Textbooks and/or Chromebooks are loaned to the student, and it is the student’s responsibility to maintain the books and/or Chromebooks in an appropriate manner. If textbooks and/or Chromebooks are lost or damaged, the student is required to pay for the loss or damage. This includes writing/graffiti on the inside or outside of a book. Grade reports and/or privileges may be withheld if a student has not returned a textbook or made an attempt to speak to an administrator.
Students who behave inappropriately are subject to progressive interventions/discipline. Interventions/discipline may be utilized by administration to support a change in student decision-making and behavior. This is included but not limited to: counseling by administration and/or support staff, warning(s), class period suspension, detention, parent conference, school site behavior contract, in-school suspension, at-home suspension, district behavior contract, involuntary administrative transfer, revocation of Inter-District Transfer Agreement, and/or expulsion from HBCSD. Students also risk being excluded from attending school activities/events (which include but are not limited to): end of year activities, school dances, athletic participation, and field trips..
The Huntington Beach City School District has a firm policy of "Zero Tolerance" regarding weapons on school campuses or in the possession of students at school activities.
BULLYING AND REPORTING INCIDENTS
The Huntington Beach City School District has a firm policy on bullying and bullying prevention. Please visit the site below that outlines our policies.
With certain discipline issues, a student may be assigned detentions as needed. Students will be notified via conference and/or a form. Progressive discipline will be used if a student does not show up to the scheduled after school detention.
Severe behaviors that will result in immediate referral to the office include but are not limited to the following:
● Vulgar and defiant language directed toward a teacher or others/used in a classroom
● Use of or possession of any item used as a weapon
● Being under the influence of alcohol, tobacco, or a controlled substance
● Theft, robbery, or strong arm robbery (use of force)
● Sexual, racial, or religious harassment
● Threatening or intimidating another student or staff member
● Possession of explosives, dangerous items, tobacco or drug paraphernalia, or tobacco products
FORMAL SCHOOL SUSPENSION
Suspension is when the school administrator or designee removes a student from school for disciplinary reasons, for a period of one or more school days. The following are legal reasons for suspension from school in accordance with Education Code 48900:
● Caused, attempted to cause, or threatened to cause physical injury to another person.
● Possessed, sold, or otherwise furnished any firearm, knife, explosive, or other dangerous object.
● Unlawfully possessed, used, sold, or otherwise furnished, or been under the influence of any controlled substance such as an alcoholic beverage or intoxicant.
● Unlawfully offered, arranged, or negotiated to sell any controlled substance listed, alcoholic beverage or an intoxicant of any kind, and they either sold, delivered, or otherwise furnished to any person another liquid, substance, or material and represented the liquid, substance, or material as a controlled substance, alcoholic beverage or intoxicant.
● Committed or attempted to commit robbery or extortion.
● Caused or attempted to cause damage to school property or private property.
● Stole or attempted to steal property or private property.
● Possessed or used tobacco, or any products containing tobacco or nicotine.
● Committed an obscene act or engaged in habitual profanity or vulgarity.
● Had unlawful possession of, or unlawfully offered, arranged, or negotiated to sell any drug paraphernalia.
● Disrupted school activities or otherwise willfully defied school authorities.
● Knowingly received stolen property.
● Possessed an imitation firearm.
● Committed/attempted to commit sexual assault/battery.
● Committed sexual harassment.
● Caused or attempted to cause/threatened to cause or participate in an act of hate violence.
● Harassment that creates an intimidating/hostile education environment.
● Engaged in an act of bullying, which causes a school disruption, including cyberbullying by means of an electronic device.
It is the responsibility of the student to obtain and complete work missed due to a suspension upon return to school. However, please note that under the Education Code teachers are not required to provide make-up work for suspended students.
The following acts may result in expulsion in addition to suspension:
● Any act of hate violence will be subject to suspension and/or recommendation for expulsion.
● Possession of cigarettes, drug paraphernalia, lighters, marijuana, controlled substances or other prescription drugs without a valid and approved prescription will result in suspension and may result in a recommendation for expulsion. ● The possession of any item used as a weapon, guns, knives or look-a-like weapons will result in suspension and may result in a recommendation for expulsion.
PARENT PORTAL FOR COMMUNICATION
Sowers utilizes ParentSquare to communicate pertinent information. Sowers also utilizes Canvas which allows you to keep track of your student’s homework assignments, current projects, standards covered in classes, current daily grades and missing assignments. The Sowers website also is a home to information: www.isms.schoolloop.com.
In case of a major emergency, all school employees are designated, by law, as part of a Civil Defense Force. As such, school employees remain and are in charge of the welfare of the students until relieved or directed otherwise. Emergency procedures provide for a student release station to monitor the release of students from campus. When you or your designee arrives at Sowers to pick up your student in an emergency, ask where the student release station is at and go there to meet your child. Please do not remove him/her from the school grounds without administrative direction.
● Please DO NOT call the school; the lines available will need to stay open.
● Your student must remain at school under school supervision in the event of an emergency until officially released by school personnel. PLEASE encourage your child to follow school directions and stay put.
● Be certain that all information on your student’s portal and “Student Release in Case of Emergency” disaster release form is current, including the names and addresses of designated persons who may pick up your student.
PROGRESS REPORTS TO PARENTS
Progress reports are sent home the fifth week of each quarter when it becomes evident that a student is receiving a grade less than a C in a class or has an N or U in Citizenship and/or Work Habits.
● Quarterly Report Cards: Report Cards are available to access via the Aeries Parent Portal at the end of each academic quarter.
● Parent Conferences: In the fall, parent(s)/guardian(s) have the opportunity to have a conference with their student’s teachers to discuss student progress. Due to limited conference availability, families with students that are experiencing academic or behavioral concerns will be given priority during conference scheduling.