- Board Directive
The Board adopts this policy, in part, because the legislature has conditioned certain governmental immunity protections upon the adoption of an appropriate behavior policy not less stringent than a model policy created by the State Board of Education. The Board is committed to establishing and maintaining appropriate standards of conduct between staff members and students. These standards of conduct are also known as professional boundaries. Staff members shall maintain professional and appropriate demeanor and relationships with students, both during and outside of school hours, as well as both on and off campus, that foster an effective, non-disruptive and safe learning environment. The Board delegates to the Administration the responsibility for establishing guidelines for the Employee Code of Conduct.
- Administrative Policy
- Staff Member: an employee, contractor or volunteer with unsupervised access to students.
- Student: a child under the age of 18 or over the age of 18 if still enrolled in a public secondary school.
- Boundary Violation: crossing verbal, physical, emotional, or social lines that staff must maintain in order to ensure structure, security, and predictability in an educational environment.
- A boundary violation may include the following, depending on the circumstances:
- Isolated, one-on-one interactions with a student out of the line of sight of others;
- Meeting with a student in rooms with covered or blocked windows;
- Telling risqué jokes to, or in the presence of a student;
- Employing favoritism to a student;
- Giving gifts to individual students;
- Staff member initiated frontal hugging or other uninvited touching;
- Photographing an individual student for a non-educational purpose or use;
- Engaging in inappropriate or unprofessional contact outside of educational program activities;
- Exchanging personal email or phone numbers with a student for a non-educational purpose or use;
- Interacting privately with a student through social media, computer, or handheld devices; and
- Discussing an employee’s personal life or personal issues with a student.
- A boundary violation does not include:
- Offering praise, encouragement, or acknowledgment;
- Offering rewards available to all who achieve;
- Asking permission to touch for necessary purposes;
- Giving a pat on the back or a shoulder;
- Giving a side hug;
- Giving a handshake or high five;
- Offering warmth and kindness;
- Utilizing public social media alerts to groups of students and parents; or
- Contact permitted by an IEP or 504 plan.
- Grooming: befriending and establishing an emotional connection with a student or a student’s family to lower the student’s inhibitions for emotional, physical, or sexual abuse.
- Sexual Conduct: includes any sexual contact or communication between a staff member and a student including but not limited to:
- Sexual Abuse: the criminal conduct described in Utah Code Ann. 76-5-404.1(2) and includes, regardless of the gender of any participant:
- Touching the anus, buttocks, pubic area, or genitalia of a student;
- Touching the breast of a female student; or
- Otherwise taking indecent liberties with a student; with the intent to:
- cause substantial emotional or bodily pain; or
- arouse or gratify the sexual desire of any individual.
- Sexual Battery: the criminal conduct described in Utah Code Ann. 76-9-702.1 and includes intentionally touching, whether or not through clothing, the anus, buttocks, or any part of the genitals of a student, or the breast of a female student, and the actor’s conduct is under circumstances the actor knows or should know will likely cause affront or alarm to the student touched; or
- A staff member and student sharing any sexually explicit or lewd communication, image, or photograph.
Staff members shall act in a way that acknowledges and reflects their inherent positions of authority and influence over students.
- Staff members shall recognize and maintain appropriate personal boundaries in teaching, supervising and interacting with students and shall avoid boundary violations including behavior that could reasonably be considered grooming or lead to even an appearance of impropriety. It is not a boundary violation when a student acts or speaks in inappropriately familiar ways with a staff member without having been prompted to do so by the staff member, but such incidents must be promptly documented and reported to the staff member’s supervisor or the building principal and the student should be given guidance on proper student-staff relationships as directed by the supervisor or principal.
- A staff member may not subject a student to any form of abuse including, but not limited to:
- physical abuse;
- verbal abuse;
- sexual abuse; or
- mental abuse.
- A staff member shall not touch a student in a way that makes a reasonably objective student feel uncomfortable.
- A staff member shall not engage in any sexual conduct toward or sexual relations with a student including, but not limited to:
- viewing with a student, or allowing a student to view, pornography or any other sexually explicit or inappropriate images or content, whether video, audio, print, text or other format;
- sexual battery; or
- sexual assault.
- Staff member communications with students, whether verbal or electronic, shall be professional and avoid boundary violations.
- A staff member shall not provide gifts, special favors, or preferential treatment to a student or group of students.
- A staff member shall not discriminate against a student on the basis of sex, religion, national origin, gender identity, sexual orientation, or any other prohibited class.
- Staff member use of electronic devices and social media to communicate with students must comply with District policy, be professional, pertain to school activities or classes, and comply with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act.
- A staff member may not use or be under the influence of alcohol or illegal substances during work hours on school property or at school sponsored events while acting as a staff member. Additionally, a staff member may not use any form of tobacco or electronic cigarettes on school property or at school sponsored activities in an employment capacity.
- The prohibitions listed above in subsections 1 through 9 apply to staff member interaction with any student presently enrolled in the District and to staff member interaction with any former student who was enrolled at a school where the staff member was assigned during the student’s enrollment at that school for a period of two (2) years after the student ceased enrollment at that school.
- A staff member shall cooperate in any investigation concerning allegations of actions, conduct, or communications that if proven, would violate this policy.
- The District recognizes that familial relationships or other relationships which are independent of and which do not arise out of the school context between a staff member and a student or former student may provide for exceptions to certain provisions of this policy.
- Conduct prohibited by this policy is considered a violation of this policy regardless of whether the student may have consented.
- A staff member who has reason to believe there has been a violation of this policy shall immediately report such conduct to an appropriate supervisor or school administrator. If a staff member has reason to believe a school administrator has violated this policy, the staff member shall immediately report the conduct to the administrator’s supervisor.
- In addition to the obligation to report suspected child abuse or neglect to law enforcement or the Division of Child and Family Services under Utah Code Ann. 62A-4a-403:
- a staff member who has reasonable cause to believe that a student may have been physically or sexually abused by a school staff member shall immediately report the belief and all other relevant information to the school administrator, or to District Administration;
- a school administrator who has received a report or who otherwise has reasonable cause to believe that a student may have been physically or sexually abused by a school staff member shall immediately inform the District Administration of the reported abuse; and
- if the staff member suspected to have abused a student holds a professional educator license issued by the Utah State Board of Education, the District Administration shall immediately report that information to the Utah Professional Practices Advisory Commission;
- a person who makes a report under this subsection in good faith shall be immune from civil or criminal liability that might otherwise arise by reason of that report.
- A staff member who has knowledge of suspected incidents of bullying shall immediately notify the student’s building administrator in compliance with Policy AS98-Bulying, Cyberbullying and Hazing.
- Failing to report suspected misconduct as required herein is a violation of this policy, the Utah Educator Standards, and in some instances, state law, and may result in disciplinary action.
- Within 10 days of beginning employment with the District a staff member shall receive video training regarding this policy and shall electronically acknowledge having received training and understanding the policy.
- Staff members employed by the District at the time of initial adoption of this policy shall receive video training regarding this policy prior to the first day of the 2019-2020 school year on which students will be in attendance and shall electronically acknowledge having received training and understanding the policy.
- All employees will receive video training annually as part of the crucial policy review.
A staff member found in violation of this policy will be subject to disciplinary action, up to and including removal as a volunteer or termination of employment in accordance with orderly termination policy DP316 NEG, DP316A and DP316B NEG.
Utah Code Title 62A, Chapter 4a, Part 4, Child Abuse or Neglect Reporting Requirements
Utah Code Section 53E-6-701, Mandatory Reporting of Physical or Sexual Abuse of Students
Utah Admin. Code R277-401, Child Abuse-Neglect Reporting by Education Personnel
Utah Admin. Code R277-515, Utah Educator Professional Standard
Utah Admin. Code R277-322, LEA Codes of Conduct
Utah Code Section 63G-7-301, Waivers of Immunity
Utah Code Section 76-5-401.1, Sexual Abuse of a Minor
Utah Code Section 76-9-702.1, Sexual Battery
- Effective: 6/8/2004
- Revision: 8/11/2020
- Reviewed: 7/25/2017
- Board Directive
The Board recognizes that licensed staff should be placed in the school that will best fit the educational needs of the students in the District. When circumstances make it necessary to reduce staff, orderly procedures are to be implemented in accordance with Utah Code 53G-11-516. This policy is intended to be consistent with the Public Education Human Resources Management Act §53G-11-501 et seq.
- Administrative Policy
- Reduction in Staff (RIS)
- In the event of declining enrollment, the discontinuance or substantial reduction of a particular service or program, the shortage of anticipated revenue, school consolidation, or other unforeseen circumstances, it may become necessary to initiate a RIS. If a RIS is necessary, seniority will not be used in determinations; however, decisions may be within the discretion of the school/program using a rubric as outlined in the "Reduction in Staff Guidelines" to consider the following:
- Program and staffing needs of the school / District
- Employee performance evaluation (appropriate for the job classification)
- All teachers, including those on a plan of assistance or probation, may be affected by a RIS.
- For licensed employees who are to be affected by a RIS, the school / program administrator will submit RIS recommendations to the Administrator of Schools and the Administrator of Human Resources for approval.
- Under normal circumstances, licensed employees who are to be affected by a RIS and potentially subject to a Reduction in Force (RIF), shall receive at least thirty (30) days notice from the Human Resource Department. This RIS/RIF notice to licensed employees will serve as the thirty (30) days notice should the employee not be able to secure a position with the District.
- Teachers affected by a RIS will be eligible to participate in transfers as per policy DP304 NEG – Teacher Transfers
- If an employee is subject to a RIS at a school and a position for which they are qualified opens up at the same school before ten (10) calendar days prior to the New Teacher Induction, the employee has the option to return to their school. At the time of the RIS meeting with the principal, the employee will sign a form indicating whether or not he/she wants to return to the school. If no, the principal has no obligation to contact the employee and may move forward with the hiring process. If yes, the principal must use the two methods indicated on the RIS form and wait 48 hours to hear from the employee before proceeding with the hiring process. If the employee responds to the principal within 48 hours, the principal must allow the employee to return to his/her original position, cancelling the RIS.
- An employee subject to a RIS will be given the opportunity to substitute for up to one-year at the same pay and benefits as if they had retained their previous position.
- Teachers affected by a RIS may apply online for available positions for which they are qualified in addition to any transfer request entered into Skyward. However, there is no guarantee of continued employment. If after a RIS and one year serving as a substitute teacher the teacher has not been hired for an available position, the employee will be subject to a RIF.
- Reduction in Force (RIF)
- In the event of declining enrollment, the discontinuance or substantial reduction of a particular service or program, the shortage of anticipated revenue, school consolidation, or other unforeseen circumstances, it may become necessary to initiate a RIF. If a RIF is necessary, seniority will not be used in determinations; however, decisions may be within the discretion of the district to consider the following:
- Program and staffing needs of the school / District.
- Employee performance evaluation (appropriate for the job classification).
- Under normal circumstances, licensed employees who are to be affected by a RIF, shall receive at least thirty (30) days’ notice.
- If a licensed employee is terminated through a RIF, the employee will be contacted and given the opportunity to interview for available positions for which they apply online and are qualified within one (1) year of the date of the RIF. However, there is no guarantee of continued employment.
- If a licensed employee is terminated through a RIF and rehired during the same contract year, the employee’s salary placement shall remain unchanged. If the terminated employee is rehired during a subsequent year, salary placement will move up one level, provided a salary increase was authorized by the Board of Education and included on the current salary schedule. If the employee applies and qualifies for a salary change between the times of the RIF and rehiring during a subsequent year, salary placement will be on the higher level provided a salary increase was authorized by the Board and included on the current salary schedule.
- A licensed employee who is rehired following termination through the RIF process, shall have accrued sick leave and other leave benefits reinstated at the level existing at the time of the RIF, provided the benefit was authorized by the Board for the current academic year.
History of revisions: 9/13/11, 2/23/16
Number - DP377
Effective - 3/28/2017
- Board Directive
Educational institutions are potential high-risk areas for transmission of vaccine-preventable diseases. While immunization is an important health requirement for students in District schools, it is equally important for staff in these settings and other District buildings to be protected against vaccine-preventable diseases. This policy is adopted in conformance with the Salt Lake County Health Department’s (health department) Health Regulation #38. The Board delegates to the District Administration the responsibility for developing and administrating the policy for employee immunizations.
- Administrative Policy
Utah law provides the health department, in the event of a case or an outbreak of a vaccine-preventable disease among District students or employees, with the authority to exclude from school and the workplace all susceptible persons, including students and employees, to prevent the spread of a communicable disease and to protect the public’s health. This policy is adopted to facilitate the timely identification of employees who must be excluded and to outline the details of their employment status during the period of exclusion.
- Record of Immunization
All employees are encouraged to maintain a record of immunization or immunity against the diseases listed in Section C for ready access in the event of an outbreak. In the event of an outbreak, District nurses will act as a liaison between the health department, school administration and impacted employee(s) who will be required to provide their record of immunization. Employees with no record on file, or whose record does not indicate immunization against the disease identified in an outbreak, may be excluded from the school or workplace until authorized by the local health department to return.
- Recommended Vaccinations
The District will provide policy notification to employees during the new hire onboarding process and each year during the critical policy review. In accordance with the recommendation of the Utah Department of Health, all employees are encouraged to be vaccinated against the following:
- Measles, Mumps, Rubella (MMR) – Employees born in or after 1957 must provide documentation of two (2) doses of the MMR administered at least one month apart, or proof of immunity.
- Tetanus, Diphtheria, Pertussis (Tdap) – Employees must provide documentation of one (1) dose of the Tdap.
- Varicella (Chicken Pox) – Employees must provide documentation of receiving two (2) doses of Varicella vaccine at least four (4) weeks apart or a physician diagnosis or personal recall of Varicella disease or proof of immunity.
Except as otherwise provided, employees may claim an exemption to an immunization for 1) medical; 2) religious; or 3) personal reason(s), as allowed by Utah Code §53G-9-303. Each exemption claimed must be accompanied by the appropriate authorized health department exemption form.
When the local health department verifies that a case or an outbreak of a disease listed in Section C has been identified at a school or other District location, the health department has the authority to exclude individuals from the workplace it determines pose a risk to the public health. Administrators should cooperate with health department personnel and District nurses to request records of immunization. If the health department determines that an employee must be excluded, the health department official or District nurse shall notify the school/building administrator and the Administrator of Human Resources. The District will take action according to the following provisions:
- Communication with health department.
In the event an employee is excluded, school/building administrators and other District administrators shall communicate with health department officials regarding such issues as schedules, activities, and other information to mitigate the exclusion from unnecessarily disrupting school/building operation.
- Excluded with a personal, medical or religious exemption form.
- An employee who is excluded because the employee submitted a properly authorized exemption form shall be allowed to use his/her available leave as allowed by policy during the time of exclusion.
- If a substitute teacher is needed, the District will cover the cost of the substitute during the time of exclusion.
- Excluded with no immunization/immunity record or exemption form.
- An employee who is excluded because the employee has been unable to provide a record of immunization/immunity or has not submitted a properly authorized exemption form shall be allowed to use his/her available leave as allowed by policy during the time of exclusion if the exclusion for an outbreak occurs before July 1, 2018.
- If the exclusion for an outbreak occurs after June 30, 2018, the excluded employee shall not be allowed to use his/her available leave as allowed by policy, with the exception of Vacation or Personal Leave, during the time of exclusion.
- If no Vacation or Personal Leave is available, the employee will be placed on unpaid administrative leave during the time of exclusion.
- This unpaid leave will not count towards the 15 day leave of absence limit set forth in DP337 NEG or DP337B NEG.
- If a substitute teacher is needed, the District will cover the cost of the substitute during the time of exclusion.