Hand Book

General Philosophy on School Policies

Stella Maris Academy is a community.  As in any community, people must work toward a common purpose in the spirit of cooperation. Our common purpose at Stella Maris is to acquire and form knowledge, enhance skills, develop a positive attitude toward learning, be responsible individuals and respect the rights and property of others.

It is our strong belief that self-discipline, not imposed discipline, is the key to positive personal growth and development and that all members of the Stella Maris Community have a willingness to accept responsibility for their actions.

It is within this context that all school policies are developed.  It is further recognized that good discipline is not an end in itself nor a means to an end.  Rather, it is a necessary component of a productive and caring working environment.  These guidelines are designed to help us appreciate our privileges and responsibilities at our school and to aid in continuing “the good life” that is the Stella Maris Spirit.


School Policies

EXPECTATIONS

At Stella Maris Academy we are to exhibit a commitment to learning and to achieving success.  Everyone is expected to be courteous and respectful at all times (especially during the school day or at any function associated with the school).  We all must aim to create a caring environment in which each one of us, students and staff alike, can realize our individual potential.

BEHAVIOUR

Each one of us must learn to work individually and with others.  Mutual respect, co-operation and sharing are important values in any social experience.  In keeping with this belief we emphasize:

Respect for Self and Respect for Others

Any overt behaviour which would demonstrate a lack of respect for self or others will be dealt with so that the well-being and security of everyone in the school is ensured.

SCHOOL HOURS

The school day begins at 8:37 a.m. at which time teachers and students go to home room.  Anyone arriving at home room after 8:40 is considered late.

The afternoon session begins at 12: 37.  Arrivals after 12:40 are considered late. 

Dismissal for Gr. 7-12 is 2:45 PM and for grades Kindergarten to 6 will be at 2:50 PM.

ATTENDANCE

Regular and punctual attendance is required of ALL students throughout the year and is a significant contributing factor to student learning.

There are times when a student cannot be in attendance because of illness or another valid reason.  In these cases:

a.   Students must provide a note from their parent/guardian explaining the reason for the absence.  The note must be presented to the homeroom teacher on the day the student returns to school.  As well, each subject teacher must be informed of the reason for absence.  This is the responsibility of the student.

b.   In the event of chronic absenteeism from school or from a class without a valid reason, disciplinary action will be taken by the administrator.

MISSED WORK

It is the student’s responsibility to make up for all work missed as a result of the absence and to ascertain (from the teacher or another student) what has been assigned by way of projects, tests, homework, etc.

LATENESS

The habit of punctuality is important both in school and in life generally.  The prepared student will make allowances for transportation problems and emergencies and provide him/herself a margin of error.

Lates between classes will be dealt  with by the individual teachers:  however, frequent lates will eventually result in a conference with administration.

In the event that a student is late for school a call will be issued to the home at the end of the school day to inform parents and guardians. 

A student who is  late for school or class 3 times in any calendar month will receive a detention.

Severe cases of lateness will be viewed as a discipline problem.

EARLY DEPARTURE

If students must leave school during the school day, they MUST HAVE PERMISSION FROM THE ADMINISTRATION.  They must have a note from home or make a telephone call from the office before leaving.  A member of the administration must confirm that the student has permission from home before the student is allowed to leave school.

LEAVING SCHOOL PROPERTY

No student should leave the school property during recess without the expressed written permission of a parent/guardian.  Such written permissions will be kept on file in the general office to protect the school’s legal position.  Bus students must provide the school with written permission to leave the school grounds during lunch times.

SMOKING

It is the policy of the Avalon East School Board that smoking is not permitted in any area under its jurisdiction.  This policy will be followed and enforced at this school.  Should any student choose to disregard this policy, disciplinary action will be taken.

LOCKERS

Lockers are the property of the school and are assigned to students at the beginning of the school year.  All outer wear should be kept in the lockers provided.  Students are not permitted to go to their lockers during or between class periods where there are no breaks scheduled.

The school is not responsible for books or other personal belongings/effects missing from lockers.

DANCES

Dances may be held periodically throughout the school year.  All school rules and regulations are to be regarded at these functions.  Students may be permitted to bring guests provided a request has been made to administration before noon on the day of the dance.   Guest’s name and sponsoring student’s name are recorded on the sponsor list prior to the dance.  The following regulations must be observed by both students and guests:

1.    Each guest must be accompanied by his /her sponsoring student.  Students who sponsor guests are responsible for the behaviour of those guests.

2.    Any student/guest found to be under the influence of a chemical/drug/alcohol substance will not be permitted to any future dance.  Parents/guardians and the R.C.M.P. will be contacted immediately.

3.    Food and beverages are not permitted in the gymnasium.

4.    Students will not be permitted entrance to the dance after doors close.

5.    Once in the building, everyone must remain until the end  of the dance; or, once out, no one will be re-admitted.

6.    All classrooms and lockers are out of bounds.

School dances will usually run from 8:30-11:00 p.m.  The success and frequency of these dances are contingent on adherence to the school’s policies.

STUDENT PARKING

We are fortunate at Stella Maris to be able to provide parking space for students with vehicles.  We ask your cooperation, however, in parking only in the designated area in the north parking lot.  As well, it is important, that students be in their cars only when they are coming to or leaving school.  Students are NOT TO CONGREGATE IN THEIR CARS ESPECIALLY AT RECESS AND LUNCH TIMES.

ATV’s are banned from school property at all times

IMPORTANT: No vehicle of any kind is to be moving on school grounds while students are getting on or off the bus.

CARE OF SCHOOL EQUIPMENT, PROPERTY AND BUILDING

All students are required to use school property with care.  Any student damaging or misusing school property will be penalized.  The student who willfully causes damages to any school property shall be liable to compensate the school and or/school board for all loss of damage incurred.

Special care should be taken to keep the school grounds neat and clean.

DRESS CODE

All students are required to come to school clean and tidy – in person and attire.  Clothing must not display offensive language that is racist, sexist, etc., or advertises alcoholic beverages or drugs.

If an article of clothing is deemed unacceptable, the school reserves the right to ask the individual to go home and change.  Attempts will be made to notify parent/guardians of such request.  If the problem persists other disciplinary measures will be sought.

Baseball hats/caps are not permitted in school.

Outerwear (i.e. outside jackets) are not to be worn in class.

FIRE ALARMS

In the event of an alarm, instructions have been posted in each classroom outlining the procedures for exiting the room and evacuating the building.  THE EVACUATION SHOULD BE CONDUCTED IN COMPLETE SILENCE.  Any student who disregards this directive may be required to answer directly to the administration.

If you are temporarily separated from your class (ie. At the washroom, on an errand, etc) leave the building immediately by the nearest exit.  Once outside, students should line up with their classes and await further instructions in silence.

During this time, classroom teachers will call the roll of the class to identify any missing students.

WASHROOM USE

Washroom use is always at the discretion of the teacher.  Students in Intermediate and Sr. High are generally not permitted to go to the washroom during periods 1, 3 & 5.  There is to be no loitering in any washroom at any time.  In case of medical necessity the appropriate documents must be on file in the office.

STUDENT EVALUATION

A.  MID-YEAR AND FINAL EXAMS

1.   If a student misses a mid-year or final exam s/he must provide a doctor’s note to the Principal.

2.   When such a note is provided, the student will either receive a pro-rated grade based on the term or year’s evaluation to date OR may be required to write a supplementary exam.

3.   Unless a doctor’s note is provided, a mark of zero (0) will be assigned.

B.    CHAPTER AND UNIT TESTS GRADES 7 – LEVEL III

1.   If a student misses a Chapter or Unit test, s/he must explain the circumstances to the Principal or Assistant Principal by one of the following ways on or before the day s/he returns to school.

a) A doctor’s note

b) A telephone call from a parent/guardian

2.    A student who fulfills either of these conditions may be required to write a deferred test at the discretion of the teacher in consultation with the Principal.

3.    If a deferred test is not given, then the value of that evaluation will be transferred to the end of year examination.  If a course has no final examination, then the value of the missed evaluation wil be reallocated to the remaining oieces of evaluation for that course.  The specifics of the reallocation is made at the discretion of the teacher in consultation with the principal.

4.    Deferred tests may  only be given under the following conditions:

a) If a student has an appointment with a    medical specialist and a note confirming the appointment signed by the specialist or designate

b) If a student has a Doctor’s note for sickness on the day of the test.

c) If a phone call has been received at the school from parents/guardians prior to the administration of the test

d) If the student is participating in a school-sponsored activity outside the school.

e) When there is a family death or major family crisis.

5.    If a deferred test is to be given, the following conditions apply.

a) The test date will be arranged by the student in consultation with the subject teacher.

b) No more than one deferred test shall be given to any student on any day.

6.    If a student misses an evaluation without a doctor’s note or telephone call from a parent or guardian then s/he will receive a mark of zero.

C.   ASSIGNMENTS ALL STUDENTS

ALL assignments must be submitted.

Students and parents should be aware that all assignments and homework are posted on the school website and that they should check the website on a regular and timely basis.

1.    When an assignment is late, the student shall be reminded about this fact and the subject teacher shall make a record of the lateness.  A late penalty of 10% shall be applied to the assignment

2.   When an assignment is late, the student will be required to complete the work at home or at a time designated by the subject teacher

3.   If the assignment cannot be completed in this time frame, a further 10% of the assignment’s value will be deducted and a detention will be issued.

4.    If the assignment cannot be presented on the next day, a third deduction of 10% shall be applied to the assignment

5.    An assignment is deemed unacceptable if it is not presented prior to the detention period and a grade of 0% will be entered for that assignment

6.    In exceptional circumstances, teachers may grant a grace period of one day

7.    This policy will not be enforced in the event of a family crisis

D.     PLAGIARISM

8.    Any student who copies material and presents it as his or her own work will receive a mark of zero on that work.

9.    Any student, whose work is presented by others as their own work, will receive a mark of zero on that work.

E.    DEFERRED CREDIT(S)

1.    A student must complete 80% of ALL course requirements which include:

Home assignments, chapter & Unit tests, project work and/or lab reports.

If this requirement is met s/he will be permitted to write a school term exam, a school final exam, or a Supplementary exam in the course.

2.    A student who does not complete 80% of the requirements of a course, as outlined in #1 above, on or before the last teaching day of the term or of the year will not be permitted to write a school term exam, or a school final exam in that course.

3.    A student who does not complete 80% of the requirements of a course, as outlined in # 1 above, on or before the last teaching day of the year will be required to write a supplementary exam in accordance with the school’s Student Evaluation Policy.

F.     ENGLISH ACROSS THE CURRICULUM

As part of our local school improvement efforts are being made to improve the quality of the written English produced by our students.  To help accomplish this objective, written assignments may include 10% for the English component.  

G.     APPEALS

Any student may appeal a final mark.  If the matter cannot be resolved by the Subject Teacher, then the Principal will make a decision in consultation with all parties concerned.

GUIDANCE DEPARTMENT

 Our General Guidance Resource Centre provides:

1.    A current collection of post-secondary calendars and brochures to help meet the needs of both students and staff alike.

2.    A current collection of career information including brochures, booklets, videos, as well as a computerized program to aid in aptitude/interest exploration.

3.    An extensive video library with programs addressing educational, social, and personal concerns and issues.

4.    And generally, an atmosphere of comfort care and concern.

The Guidance Department also provides a variety of interesting programs helpful to students, staff and parents/guardians especially.  A sample of these programs include:

‒    Lunch and Learn

‒    Post-Secondary Survival Skills Workshop

‒    Junior and Senior Study Skills Workshops

PROGRESS REPORT PERIODS

Kindergarten – Grade 6

There are 3 terms in the school year for these students.  Reports will be released and parent teacher conferences will be held on or before December 3rd, March 18th , and June 27th .

Grade 7 – Level III

There are 4 reports for these students. Reports will go home Nov 26th , Feb 15th , April 15th, and June 23rd .

CONCLUSION

It is the responsibility of all stakeholders of Stella Maris to be familiar with the policies and expectations presented in this Handbook.

Since it has been compiled with the best interests of ALL members of the school community in mind, it may necessitate that individuals relinquish some of their personal preferences in the best interest of the majority.

Please note that the regulations in this handbook are subject to change at any time during the school year.