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Disciplinary Protocol

ADOPTED BY THE GOVERNING BODY OF EDGEMEAD PRIMARY SCHOOL

DENISON WAY, EDGEMEAD.

(“the School”)

1.    PREAMBLE


1.1.    The South African Schools Act 84 of 1996 (“the Act”), section 8(1) empowers a governing body to maintain discipline in a School;

1.2.    The Governing Body of the School, recognises and acknowledges that the primary responsibility to implement and maintain discipline within the School, rests with the Principal, Deputy Principals, Heads of Department/Grade, and Educators (“the Staff”);

1.3.    The Governing Body recognises further, that the disciplinary measures available to the Staff are limited and in some cases ineffective;

1.4.    In light of the above, and in fulfilment of Section 8(1) as set out above, the Governing Body has adopted this Protocol to assist the Staff Members in the fulfilment of their disciplinary function. 


2.    DISCIPLINARY CODE


This Protocol does not replace the Disciplinary Codes and Procedures in place at the School (“the Disciplinary Codes”).  It must be read in conjunction with the said Codes and Procedures, and regarded as a supplementary measure to maintain discipline in the School.


3.    DISCIPLINARY FORUM


3.1.    The Governing Body will, in accordance with this Protocol, establish a Disciplinary Forum consisting of 2 Parent Members, an Educator Member and the Principal or his delegated representative;

3.2.    The Disciplinary Forum will not fulfil a disciplinary role within the formal disciplinary functions of the Disciplinary Codes (e.g. disciplinary inquiries), but will be required to fulfil the objectives as set out in this Protocol.

4.    APPLICATION


4.1.    This protocol will be applicable to incidents of misconduct by a Learner that are serious enough to justify intervention, but do not meet the requirements for the convening of a formal disciplinary inquiry in accordance with the Disciplinary Codes.

4.2.    For purposes of 3.1 above, an “incident” is defined as single act of misconduct serious enough to warrant the initiation of action, or alternatively a pattern of misconduct that cumulatively justifies such intervention.


5.    INITIATION


The initiation of this Protocol may be at the instance of any Staff member, subject to the following procedures:

5.1.    The Staff member must submit a written request that the Protocol be initiated;

5.2.    The written request must be addressed to, and reviewed by the Principal, in consultation with the Deputy Principals, and relevant Head of Department/Grade;

5.3.    If, in the opinion of the parties mentioned in 5.2 above, the request warrants the initiation of the Protocol, the written request will be submitted to the designated Parent member of the Disciplinary Forum for action.  The written request submitted, may be amplified/supplemented by the parties mentioned in 5.2 above.

5.4.    The written request submitted must contain sufficient information as to the facts of the matter(s) so as to ensure that the Disciplinary Forum has a comprehensive understanding as to the nature of the issues at hand.


6.    IMPLEMENTATION


6.1.    On receipt of the request, the designated Parent member of the Governing Body will proceed to convene a meeting of the Disciplinary Forum (“the meeting”), together with the Parents/Guardians of the Learner concerned;

6.2.    The above meeting must be convened within 3 weeks of receipt of the written request;

6.3.    Attendance of the Learner at the said meeting, can be at the discretion of the Parents/Guardians;

6.4.    By agreement, additional parties (e.g. psychologist) may be invited to attend the meeting.


7.    OBJECTIVE OF THE MEETING


7.1.    The objective of the meeting will be to reach agreement on a mutually beneficial course of action to remedy and/or eliminate the misconduct/pattern of misconduct; and/or

7.2.    Advise the Learner and/or Parents/Guardians as to the course of action to be adopted by the School;


8.    MEETING PROCESS/FORMAT


8.1.    The meeting will follow a consultative process, where all parties are given an opportunity to engage in the process;

8.2.     The objectives of the Protocol must be explained to the attending parties;

8.3.    The format of the meeting must be informal, but should cover the following elements:

8.3.1.    A detailed explanation as to the nature of misconduct being experienced, and the impact that such misconduct is having on the learning environment;

8.3.2.    An explanation of the disciplinary inquiry process that may be followed by the School in the event of formal action being required;

8.3.3.    An opportunity for the Parents/Guardians and/or Learner (if in attendance) to respond;

8.3.4.    A determination as to a course of action to be followed to remedy the behaviour of the Learner.

8.4.    The Disciplinary Forum may exercise a discretion to depart from the above elements should the process justify such a departure; however, such a departure must not infringe on the principle of fairness, that must always be present.


9.    RIGHTS OF THE LEARNER


Nothing contained in the Protocol shall detract and or infringe upon the rights of the Learner as set out in the Act.


10.    CONFIDENTIALITY


All elements of the process implemented in terms of this Protocol must remain confidential.


11.    DATE OF IMPLEMENTATION


This protocol was ratified by the Governing Body on the ____________, to be implemented on the _________________.



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