Note: This information is from our manual, Discipline in Public Schools.
How long can an emergency expulsion last?
No more than 10 consecutive school days. If the district decides that the student should be given another kind of discipline at any time during or at the end of an emergency expulsion, then the district has to give notice and due process rights again.
What are my child's basic rights if they are emergency expelled?
The district must have a good reason to believe that the student poses an immediate and continuing danger to other students or staff, or a threat of substantial disruption to the school. Regardless of whether a student or parent requests a hearing, the emergency expulsion can only last up to 10 school days. At that point, the school either has to “convert” the emergency expulsion to another form of discipline, or have the student return to school.
Is there a right to notice and appeal before an emergency expulsion?
No. For emergency expulsions, schools can send students home first, and give notice and the opportunity for a hearing after that.
What kind of notice and appeal process is there for an emergency expulsion?
Schools have to give students and their parents notice in writing. The notice must be hand-delivered to you within 24 hours of the expulsion. The district has to document delivery of the notice by getting the parent's signature, or by a written certification of the person who delivers the notice. A district could also send the notice by certified mail. If they do use certified mail, the district also has to try to notify the student and parent by telephone or in person as soon as reasonably possible. The notice should be in your primary language if you have limited English proficiency. In the notice, the school has to explain:
- The reasons why the student's presence poses an immediate and continuing danger to students, school staff, or a threat of substantial disruption to the school;
- The date the emergency expulsion began and will end;
- The right of the student and parents to request a hearing;
- The 3 day deadline for you to request a hearing after you get the notice (3 school business days, which doesn't count weekends or holidays); and
- An explanation that if you do not request a hearing within that 3 day timeline, that the district can consider that a waiver of your right to the hearing.
For information on what the appeal process is like for an emergency expulsion, see the section on Discipline Hearings (starting at p.42).
Should my child be getting educational supports during an emergency expulsion?
Yes. Similar to short-term suspensions, if the removal is expected to last for 5 days or less, your child should at least get their classwork, and access to someone who can help make sure they are getting assignments and the work they need. If they will be out for a full 10 days, then someone from the school should reach out to you to help make sure your child is getting the work and assignments they need in order to keep up. That person should also help make sure the work your child completes gets back to the teacher for grading. Check with the school for the name and contact information of the person who can help your child keep up with assignments and classes.