Arbor Heights Elementary School
3701 SW 104th Street
Seattle, WA 98146
Phone (206) 933-5350 Fax (206) 933-5351
November 18, 1999
In the Parent Bulletin dated October 22, 1999 I announced some adjustments to the discipline policy and said I would elaborate on my rationale for implementing the new policy.
The discipline policy was developed because there was a high percentage of parents that replied in last years survey about the increase in teasing and physical aggressiveness at Arbor Heights. Also, the academic achievement of our students is directly related to the amount of interaction offered in the classrooms. When teachers spend excessive time diffusing issues and calming down upset students, academics suffer.
Here at Arbor Heights we are fortunate to have a wonderful group of students. Some students, however, will model negative behavior if they observe that there are no consequences or consistency in the execution of a discipline policy. For this reason we have made it a school wide policy. The zero tolerance does not allow specific circumstances or individual personalities. Whenever you have a broad based, all encompassing policy like this there will be some incidents that will appear to be unfair. I am empathetic to those circumstances, but I do not want to change the policy for every circumstance. I do, however, evaluate each situation individually.
Students should never act in a physically aggressive manner towards another student. Students should never be verbally aggressive or verbally insensitive to another students. Students must find alternative ways to handle anger and allow their fellow students the dignity and respect every person should receive unconditionally.
Student intervention in the classrooms by teachers will continue to be a vital part of the program. Our teachers are the interventionists that teach problem solving skills on a daily basis. The maturation of students' skills takes place in the classroom. When a student does not respond to these positive instructional intervening techniques they come to the office.
This year we wanted to start with very high expectations. It's much easier to lower expectations, than to raise them later in an effort to react to a series of events. Our goal is to provide the safest, most successful educational climate we can. I believe this discipline policy is helping us to achieve that goal.
School will dismiss at 2:10 on Wednesday, November 24th for all students. Students that take a bus home will arrive one hour earlier than their normal schedule.
November 25th and 26th - Thanksgiving Break, no school December 16th - Winter Program at 6:30 in the school auditorium December 17th - All students dismissed one hour early December 20th - January 2nd - Winter Break, no school January 14th - Martin Luther King Jr. Assembly January 17th - Martin Luther King Jr. Day, no school January 31st - Learning Improvement Day, no school for students