Students accused of committing serious or chronic misbehavior which could result in school transfer and/or long-term suspension or expulsion are referred to the OSD. On average, the OSD receives approximately 700+ discipline referrals per year. In our efforts to minimize the number of student referrals made to our office and to comply with the laws of the State of Georgia and the Fulton County Board of Education Policies/Procedures, the OSD works with local schools to ensure that administrators, teachers, students, parents, and community leaders participate in establishing and updating our Student Code of Conduct and Responsibility Cycles. These district-wide plans are age related, progressive in nature, and address the severity of the rule infractions. Through the team effort of all persons who have a stake in the support of our schools, everyone will know what expected behavior is for our students and know the consequences for violations of these expectations.
If a student is referred to the OSD a discipline hearing will be scheduled. These hearings are closed and confidential proceedings. Friends or relatives of the student or members of the public, who are not witnesses, will not be allowed in the hearing room. Witnesses are allowed to enter the hearing room for the limited purpose of providing testimony only.
The purpose of the discipline hearing is for the Student Discipline Hearing Officer to receive evidence/testimony regarding the alleged violation and determine what, if any, consequence should be imposed when a violation has been proven. The hearing officer considers the student's academic and discipline history to determine the appropriate discipline to be imposed and/or appropriate school placement. Often, the hearing officer waives the period of long-term suspension/expulsion to allow the student to attend Fulton County Schools alternative middle/high school education program at Crossroads Second Chance – North or South Campus. The hearing officer may also refer the student to Fulton County Schools open-campus program at either Frank McClarin High School or Independence High School.