Student Bill of Rights
It is impossible to list all of the rights of students. Therefore, the following list of rights shall not be construed to deny or limit others retained by students on their own campus in their capacity as members of the student body or as citizens.
Students have the right to:
- a meaningful education that will be of value to them for the rest of their lives.
- the maintenance of high educational standards. The maximum potential of the student must be developed. Students will have the right to have announced any proficiency tests adopted by the Board of Education.
- a meaningful curriculum and the right to voice their opinions in the development of such curriculum.
- physical safety and protection of personal property.
- safe buildings and sanitary facilities.
- consultation with teachers, counselors and administrators and anyone else connected with the school.
- respect from teachers and administrators, which would exclude their being subjected to cruel and unusual punishments, especially those which are demeaning or derogatory, or which diminish their self-esteem or exclude them from their peers.
- free election of their peers in the student government and the right to seek and hold office.
- democratic representation on administrative committees affecting students and student rights.
- participation in the development of rules and regulations to which they are subject and the right to be notified of such rules and regulations.
- see their own personal files, cumulative folders, transcripts, deans’ files, etc., in conformity with provisions laid out in the California State Education Code (Section 49061-49078), and to be notified if adverse comments are placed in such records.
- be involved in school activities if they so desire without being subject to discrimination on any basis, provided they meet with the reasonable qualifications of sponsoring organizations.
- present petitions, complaints or grievances to school authorities and to receive prompt authoritative replies regarding the disposition of their petitions, complaints or grievances.
- not be penalized in any way by the school administration for the beliefs they hold provided they do not violate the rights of others.
- exercise their constitutionally protected rights of free speech and assembly. Students have the right under state and federal law to free speech, and cannot be punished for their speech unless it is obscene, libelous or slanderous; incites students as to create a clear and present danger of the commission of unlawful acts on school premises or the violation of lawful school regulations; or causes a substantial disruption to the orderly operation of the school environment. Although students may be disciplined for bullying, students cannot be punished for speech merely on the basis that someone might find it offensive or insulting. California State Education Code Section 48907 states the rights of students to:
- wear political buttons, armbands or any other badges of symbolic expression.
- use bulletin boards designated by the Principal without prior censorship requirements or approval by the administration or the Board of Education.
- distribute political leaflets, newspapers, or other printed matter both inside and outside of school property without prior authorization of, restriction by, school administration or the Board of Education, provided, however, the time of such distribution may be limited to before and after school, during lunch, or other free periods so as to prevent interference with classroom activities.
- form political and social organizations.
- determine their own appearances if that appearance is not disruptive to the learning process in the classroom or is unsafe.
- reasonable use of public address systems in school without prior censorship; however, the time of announcements may be limited to before and after school, during lunch or other free periods so as to prevent interference with class procedures.