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5771 AdmGuide_Search and Seizure

Pursuant to Board of Education Policy 5771, the following guidelines shall be used when school administrators
have reason to suspect that an illegal or dangerous substance or object or stolen property may be in the
possession of a student:
    A. All requests or suggestions for the search of a student or his/her possessions shall be directed to the
        principal or the person in charge of the students while out of the District.
    B. Wherever possible, before conducting the search, the building administrator shall notify the student, request
        his/her consent to the inspection if other than his/her locker, and inform the student that s/he may withhold
        consent. Such consent, if offered, shall be given voluntarily and with the knowledge that it could have been
        withheld. The principal shall conduct the search, however, with or without the consent.
    C. Wherever possible, an adult third party shall be present at any search of a student or his/her possessions.
    D. The principal may conduct a student search upon reasonable suspicion to suspect the presence of an illegal
        or dangerous substance or object, or anything contraband under school rules.
    E. The principal shall be responsible for the custody, control, and disposition of any illegal or dangerous
        substance or object taken from a student, whether during a student search or otherwise.
    F. Wherever possible, the student shall be present at any search of his/her possessions.
    G. The principal shall be responsible for the prompt recording of each student search. The record shall be in
        writing and shall include the reasons for the search, the persons present, the objects found, and the
        disposition made of them, and shall be kept in a secure location in his/her office.
    H. Whenever the search is prompted by the reasonable suspicion that possession of a substance or object
        immediately threatens the safety and health of the student or others, the principal shall act with as much
        speed and dispatch as is required to protect persons and property in the school while keeping clearly in mind
        the student's rights and the potential consequences of inappropriate or hasty action.
Reasonable Suspicion
As used in this section, "reasonable suspicion for a search" means grounds sufficient to cause an adult of normal
intellect to believe that the search of a particular person, place, or thing will lead to the discovery of evidence that
the student:
    A. Has violated or is violating a rule or behavioral norm contained in the student handbook;
    B. Has violated or is violating a particular law;
    C. Possesses an item or substance which presents an immediate danger of physical harm or illness to
        students and staff or District property.
Lockers and Other Storage Areas Provided for Student Use
    A. All lockers and other storage areas provided for student use remain the property of the District. These lockers
        and storage areas are subject to inspection, access for maintenance, and search pursuant to these
        guidelines. A student using the locker or storage area has, by statute, no expectation of privacy in that locker
        or storage area or the contents contained therein. No student shall lock or otherwise
        impede access to any locker or storage area except with a lock provided by or approved by the principal.
        Unapproved locks will be removed and destroyed.
    B. The principal may search student lockers and storage areas and the contents contained therein at any time
        for any justifiable reason.
    C. The principal may, at any time, request assistance of the School Resource Officer. The law enforcement
        officer must have probable cause, however, to conduct a search of the lockers and storage areas and the
        contents contained therein.
Desks and Other Storage Areas
A desk or any other storage area in the school provided for student use as well as the contents contained therein,
may be searched when the principal has reasonable suspicion for a search.
    A. Any vehicle brought on District premises by a student may be searched when the principal has reasonable
        suspicion to justify the search.
    B. One of the conditions for granting permission for a student to bring a student-operated vehicle onto school
        premises is written consent by the student driver, the owner of the vehicle, and the parent of the student to
        allow search of that vehicle. Refusal by any of the parties to provide or allow access to a vehicle at the time of
        a search request shall be cause for terminating the privilege without further hearing.
    C. Searches of vehicles of staff members or visitors shall be conducted by law enforcement personnel.
    A. The personal search of a student may be conducted by the principal when s/he has reasonable suspicion for
        a search of that student. Authorized searches of the student's person are:
            1. The student’s pockets;
            2. Purses, briefcases, or any other object in the possession of the student;
            3. A "pat down" of the exterior of the student's clothing and the removal of any item identified;
            4. Removal of an article of exterior clothing such as a jacket.
    B. Strip searches are not to be conducted by any official, employee, or agent of the District.
    C. Personal searches shall be conducted in a private room by a person of the same gender as the student and
        designated by the principal. At least one (1) but not more than three (3) additional staff members of the same
        gender as the student being searched shall witness but not participate in the search.
        At the request of the student to be searched, an additional person of the same gender as the student
        designated by the student, and then reasonably available on school premises, shall witness the search. The
        student's parents shall be notified of the search as soon as reasonably possible.
Use of Breath - Test Instruments
The principal may arrange for a breath test for blood-alcohol to be conducted on a student whenever s/he has
individualized reasonable suspicion to believe the student has consumed an alcoholic beverage.
The principal shall conduct the test.
    A. Take the student(s) to a private administrative or instructional area on school property and have at least one
        other member of the teaching or administrative staff present as a witness to the test.
    B. The purpose of the test is to determine whether or not the student has consumed an alcoholic beverage. The
        amount of consumption is not relevant, except where the student may need medical attention.
    C. The person who administers the test must be properly trained in the use of the instrument and must
        determine if the instrument is in proper calibration and working order.
    D. If the instrument provides only a visual indication of the result, make sure the result is confirmed by all the
        witnesses present and by the student. Make a written record of the instrument's serial number or
        identifier; the test result; the date, time, place of the test; the students' names; and the names of the
    E. If the instrument provides printed evidence, attach the print-out to the written record.
    F. If the result indicates a violation of school rules as described in the student handbook, follow the disciplinary
        procedure described in the handbook.
    G. If the student refuses to take the test, inform him/her that refusal to participate implies admission of guilt
        leading to disciplinary action. Allow the student a second opportunity to be tested, and if s/he refuses again,
        ask the student to sign a refusal statement. Regardless of whether or not s/he signs, prepare a written report
        of the incident.
    H. If a staff member accompanying students on a school-related activity off school grounds has individualized
        reasonable suspicion to believe that a student has consumed an alcoholic beverage and no test instrument is
        available, s/he should make a written record of all facts upon which an opinion that the student has
        consumed an alcoholic beverage is based. Since the staff member is responsible, for the welfare of a student
        who may be intoxicated, s/he should supervise the student until s/he is returned to the custody of his/her
        parents or a law enforcement official.
Use of Dogs
The Board has authorized the use of specially-trained dogs to detect the presence of drugs and devices such as
bombs on school property under the following conditions:
    A. The presence of the dogs on school property must be authorized, in advance, by the Director Administrator
        or be pursuant to a court order or warrant.
    A. The dog must be handled by a law enforcement officer or a contracted person specially trained to safely and
        competently work with the dog.
    B. The dog is represented by the Sheriff or Chief of the law enforcement agency providing the service as capable
        of accurately detecting drugs and/or devices.
    C. The dog will be allowed to examine a student's possessions, including vehicles, but any search of a student's
        person will be based upon individualized reasonable suspicion.
    D. The dog may be allowed to examine school property such as lockers as permitted by the building principal.
        Any limitation as to areas of school property to be examined by the dog shall be established by the principal
        at the time the use of dogs is authorized.
Method of Search
The scope of any search should be limited by the reasonable suspicion that motivated the search. If an item is
found that leads to reasonable suspicion that additional, correlated items may also exist, the search may be
extended. If the initial search produces no evidence of contraband, there should be no extension of the search
based on simple curiosity.
Items Found
Anything found in the course of a search which is evidence of a student violation of school rules or Federal/State
laws may be seized and admitted as evidence in any suspension or expulsion proceeding if it is tagged for
identification at the time it is seized and kept in a secure place by the principal until it is presented at the hearing.
It may also be turned over to any law enforcement officer after proper notation and receipt.
Approved/Adopted:  July 13, 2009
Approved/Adopted:  August 1, 2013
Sharon Weinstock,
Dec 20, 2013, 6:40 AM