HIGHLAND RANCH ELEMENTARY

STUDENT HANDBOOK

 HIGHLAND RANCH EXPECTATIONS: School wide behavioral expectations are in place. They specify the conduct that is expected by everyone who is a part of our school community. The foundation of these expectations are the six Pillars of Character which are: trustworthiness, respect, responsibility, fairness, caring and citizenship. Our expectations are designed to create a positive, purposeful and nurturing environment.  All students in grades first through fifth will have a conduct assembly at the beginning of the year. Kindergarten students will have a classroom visit from Mrs. Venolia to discuss expectations.

WHEN YOUR CHILD IS ABSENT: You must call the attendance hotline if your child is absent: 858-485-4876. Leave your child’s name, spell the last name; the teacher’s name; the reason for the absence; and who is leaving the message (i.e. parent or legal guardian). Please notify us in case of a lengthy absence, contagious illness (classmates must be notified), or serious injury.
 
WHEN YOUR CHILD IS TARDY: Should your child arrive after 7:45 a.m., he/she must first report to the office for a tardy slip before going to class. If your child reports directly to their classroom, it is possible that attendance has already been taken and your child will be recorded as an absence and not tardy. You can ensure this does not happen by getting the required tardy slip from the office. Because we feel it is important to minimize all unnecessary classroom interruptions, we request that you do not accompany your tardy student to class.  
 
MEDICATION: Any student who is required to take medicine during the day (prescribed by a physician) must file an Authorization for Medication Administration form (available here and in the office). For the protection and safety of all students, we are not able to dispense any over-the-counter medications (i.e. Tylenol, cough drops, etc.) without a physician's note. Please do not send these to school with your child.
 
WHEN YOUR CHILD IS ILL AT SCHOOL: If your child has a fever or is displaying other symptoms of illness or injury, the parent will be notified first; if the parent is unavailable, we will call the people you have listed as “emergency contacts.” Please be sure the office has the phone number of your child care provider, if appropriate. Children that are sent home with a temperature of 100° or above are to stay home for an additional school day.  
 
CELL PHONES:  Cell phones are permissible for students only in the classroom and only when used for an assignment given by the teacher.   Cell phones are NOT to be out on campus during the school day. A student’s cell phone will be kept in the office until the end of the day and parents will be notified if a student is accessing a phone or other electronic device (iPad, tablet) on campus during school hours, without teacher approval.  The front office is a cell phone free zone for all staff and parents. If you are waiting for your child, we ask that you receive or make any phone calls outside the office.
 
EXTENDED STUDENT SERVICES (ESS): Our ESS program (before and after school care) is available from 6:30 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. For additional information, please call 485-7310 and speak to the staff.
 
SCHOOL ARRIVAL/DISMISSAL TIMES:  The gates open at 7:30 a.m.  Students should enter school through the double gates next to the administration office. This is the time supervision becomes available. Please do not send or drop off children until supervision begins. School begins at 7:45 a.m. and dismisses at 1:45 p.m. Monday through Friday.  We do not time bank so our dismissal times are consistent. Late pickups may be taken to ESS, at a charge to the parents. Students not attending ESS or other after-school activities may not be on school grounds without a parent. Parents are encouraged to make all necessary doctor/dentist appointments after 1:45.   
 
WHEN YOU MUST TAKE YOUR CHILD OUT OF SCHOOL: If you must take your child out of school for something that is not illness-related for more than 5 consecutive days, you need to contact the office in advance (2 weeks prior to the absence) to request an Off Campus Study Contract. Because we believe the continuity gained by attending school every day is very important, we discourage the practice of students being absent for anything other than illness. Absences not covered by an Off Campus Study Contract are considered by the State of California to be unexcused.
 
CAR TRANSPORTATION BEFORE AND AFTER SCHOOL: When dropping off or picking up your child, please do so as quickly and safely as possible to avoid congestion in the parking lot. Please do not double park or stop your car in the middle of the driveway. Always watch for children and other cars. DO NOT PARK OR STOP IN THE RED CURB AREA.  The yellow curb is for very quick drop off or pick up while you are IN THE CAR - DO NOT PARK. There are 4 short term parking spots in the front of the school for parent use.
 
STUDENT DROP OFF & PICK UP: Please do not access the driveway in front of the school from 7:45-8:15 a.m. and 1:45-2:15 p.m. During these times we have buses unloading and loading students. For the safety of these students there cannot be car traffic in the driveway when the buses are present.
 
RAINY DAY SCHEDULE: Before school students will go straight to the Multi-Purpose Room (MPR) on rainy days.

SCHOOL OFFICE: The office is open from 7:00 a.m. until 3:30 p.m. Monday through Friday, excluding holidays. Phones are answered during office hours only. Our office staff strive to provide the best possible service. In order to help do this, student use of the office telephone is limited to urgent calls. Arrangements for friends to come over after school should be made at home and understood by both parents and students in advance.  If you need to pick your child up for any reason during school hours, please come to the school office; we will call your child’s classroom and have him/her sent to the office so you can sign your student out.
 
VISITORS: All visitors to campus must sign-in in the office before visiting classes in session. Please refer to Classroom Observation and Visitation Policy before visiting any classroom. All visitors to Highland Ranch must be prepared to show picture identification when requested.

CLASSROOM OBSERVATION AND VISITATION POLICY: We encourage parent participation in our school and permit observations of classes to facilitate educational planning. To reduce the impact on student learning, all visitors are required to get the principal’s permission at least 24 hours in advance before observing in a classroom. Each observation will last no longer than 30 minutes and will have an administrator present. The reason for the limitations on observations is to protect the learning environment from frequent interruptions. During classroom observations, we require the visitor to be a silent observer and not interrupt by asking questions of the teacher or students during instructional time. As required by PUSD board policy, all visitors must check into the office before entering the campus and must wear a visitor’s badge while on our campus. (Board Policy 5.27.1) Parents are encouraged to join their children for special events such as celebrations, presentations, and performances.  Parents may join their child for lunch, but for the safety of our students, are not to join their children on the playground.
 
VOLUNTEER FOR FIELD TRIPS:  We welcome the opportunity for parents to join their children on field trips.  A parent’s responsibility is to chaperone the students on the field trip, and will not be allowed to bring siblings on the field trip.  A parent must stay with the group assigned to him/her at all times, and ensure that the rules presented by the teacher for the field trip are followed.   
 
PROGRESS REPORTS AND PARENT CONFERENCES: Progress Reports are issued three times a year – typically in October, March, and June. Parent conferences are provided for all parents at the end of the first reporting period. Parents requesting additional conferences are encouraged to contact their child’s teacher for a convenient time to meet.
 
BACK TO SCHOOL NIGHT: This special night is for parents to meet their child’s teacher and learn about the curriculum. You will be notified via our ConnectEd call out system regarding the dates and times. It’s a time when teachers will explain their programs and expectations. Parents are encouraged to make babysitting arrangements on Back-to-School Night for grades first through fifth.  No childcare will be made available.
 
CAFETERIA SERVICE: Students are able to purchase a hot lunch daily. The cost of lunch is $3.25 and includes milk. Milk (.75), fruit drink (.75) can also be purchased separately for students who bring their lunch. Lunches may be pre-purchased by check for the month. Checks should be made payable to PUSD Food Service and turned in to the office. Qualifying families may apply for free or reduced price lunches. For additional information, please visit http://powayusdnutrition.com/
 
LOST AND FOUND: Students who find items on the school grounds should turn them in to the Lost & Found Cart near the MPR room. Parents are urged to clearly mark students’ names on clothing, lunches, and other belongings. In the event an item of clothing is lost, you should check the Lost & Found to see if it has been turned in. Smaller or personal items are kept in the Office. Items not claimed are donated to charity on a bi-monthly basis.
 
SCHOOL PICTURES: These are taken early in the school year. They are delivered to students usually before Winter break. Prices vary.
 
BICYCLES & SCOOTERS: Students are permitted to ride their bikes/scooters to school when accompanied by their parent in grades 1st and 2nd; students may ride their bikes/scooters to school independently in grades 3-5. All students should be aware of and follow safety rules in order to ride their bikes/scooters. Bicycles/scooters should always be walked on school grounds and locked in the bike area when parked. Those parents of students in grades 3-5 who wish to allow their children to ride their bikes to school must fill out a bike registration form: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1kzgyrh0YGyZ1B4q-ShEIekJIcXP6Va_E/view?usp=sharing.

 The school is not responsible for damage or loss of bicycles. Helmets are required for all children under the age of 18, per California law.
 
EARTHQUAKE PREPAREDNESS AND OTHER EMERGENCIES: In case of an earthquake, the staff will stay at school until the emergency is over and all children are safe. The staff has been given specific procedures to follow. We feel the safest place for children in an emergency during the school day is on the school campus itself, under the supervision of trained personnel. We will NOT send students home in an emergency. They must be checked out by a parent/guardian or other individual listed on the Disaster Priority Release Form. It is important that this form be kept up to date. The students will be practicing duck, cover and hold drills throughout the year. Parents who are on campus at the time of any safety drill are expected to follow all safety procedures, modeling appropriate behavior for the students.
 
EMERGENCY CONTACTS: A list of Emergency Contacts is maintained in the office. These are people to be called in the event of an emergency and if the parents can’t be located. Emergency Contacts are designated on the enrollment form and should be kept up to date.  All emergency contacts should bring photo identification to school when picking up a student.
HIGHLAND RANCH EXPECTATIONS
SCHOOL CONSEQUENCES
  • WARNING: Students may get a warning or a time-out (at recess and lunch you must sit by the wall)  if they make poor choices. They must stay there until released by the yard supervisor.
  • PARENT NOTIFICATION: A teacher or principal may call parents to help students improve their choices.
  • STUDENT REFERRAL: Students may get a Character Violation, Expected Results and/or Think Sheet  to take home for parents to sign. They need to bring it back signed by parents the next day.
  • DETENTION: Student may miss recess or another fun activity if they make poor choices. 
SUSPENSION/EXPULSION
  • VIOLENCE:  Violence includes the actual, attempted, or threatened . Fighting or threatening to fight, spitting and biting are not tolerated.
  • DANGEROUS OBJECTS: Knives, matches, lighters, ammunition, guns, fireworks, or any other potentially harmful object which might be used to hurt another person are forbidden. Throwing objects from the two-story building is considered a “dangerous object” and you will be suspended for this.  
  • VERBAL ABUSE/HATE LANGUAGE:  We do not use language which might hurt other people's feelings. We do not tolerate name-calling. – this is unkind. We do not make fun of, or show disrespect of another person's race, religion, gender, or ethnic background. We do not use profanity (swear words) at Highland Ranch. This is also true of things sent electronically (email, text, My Connect)
  • DRUGS, ALCOHOL, TOBACCO: Drugs, tobacco and alcohol use by minors is against California law. In addition to school penalties, Highland Ranch is required to notify the San Diego Police Department.
  • STEALING, VANDALISM: We respect the property of others and of our school. If students choose to destroy or damage anything that does not belong to you, it is called vandalism. Students and their parents are required by California law to pay for things that are vandalized.  This includes not taking care of iPads and Chromebooks.
APPROPRIATE ATTIRE AT ALL TIMES - STALLIONS DRESS FOR SUCCESS!
  1. Clothing, jewelry, accessories, or notebooks will be free of writing, pictures, or other insignia which are obscene, crude, vulgar, profane, sexually suggestive, or which advocate racial, ethnic or religious prejudice, or the use of drugs, alcohol, or tobacco.
  2. Clothing will be sufficient to conceal undergarments at all times.   No bare midriffs. Shirts or tops must not expose the stomach.
  3. No tight or revealing clothes.
  4. Any clothing that is unsafe or disrupts the functioning of the classroom or school will not be permitted.
  5. For safety reasons, shoes should be close-toed.
  6. Hats or sunglasses, will not be worn in the classroom except as required for health or safety purposes, and approved by the administration.  Sun hats or caps (bill forward) may be worn on the playground for protection from the sun.
  7. For P.E. classes, students should wear appropriate footwear.
  8. The following are examples of items considered unsafe or inappropriate for school: hoop earrings, make-up, temporary tattoos, tank tops, “spaghetti” straps, midriff tops, short skirts, spiked jewelry, colored hair, distracting hair style, and bandanas.
  9. No shoes with rollers underneath the sole of shoes.
  10. The administrator or designee reserves the right to interpret the school dress code. ‚Äč
PLAYGROUND EXPECTATIONS
  • SWINGS – Sit on swings, hands on chains. No jumping out of swings, standing, kicking off shoes, no twisting, swinging sideways leaning back or flips off the swing. Count 30 swings before your turn. Do not count if there is an open swing. Count backs are not allowed. No stretching or pulling on chair while swinging. Please swing facing the school. 
  • FOURSQUARE RULES – Server bounces the ball, and then hits it underhand to any square. The ball must bounce only once in the square and then that player hits it to another square. The ball must bounce before being hit to the next square. The ball must be struck with an open hand. Waiting players line up 3 feet from game. Stepping on or over the line is a foul, causing the player to be out (except when stepping out of your own square). Players rotate towards square A. Only the person who is “out” leaves the game. New players enter at square D. Square A is always the server. If the ball hits on a line, it is an out for the hitter. If the ball is made to bounce over an opponent’s head, it is an out for the hitter. 
  • HANDBALL RULES – 4 players total. 1 Server. Server A hits the ball (with closed fist) against board to start play. The ball must cross the line on the first bounce. Server has two tries. If he/she fails to have the ball bounce over the line, they are out and the next person in the court is the server. Once the server hits the ball over the line, the game begins. Students in order B, C, and D will take turns hitting the ball against the board with closed fist. One or two hits are allowed when hitting the ball. Player returning the ball must hit the ball against the board. The ball must bounce inside the court. If the player misses the ball, hits another student with the ball or hits the ball out of the court, he/she is out of the game and the next person in line rotates in the court. If another player interferes or another player is hit, that person is out of the game. If the ball lands on the line, that ball is good. No do over, oops, or skinners are allowed. Students in line must stand 2 feet away from the line of the court. 
  • MONKEY BARS – Students in grades first through fifth may use the monkey bars.  Students should line up at one end of the bars. One student at a time proceeds across the bar in one direction. Once the student goes across, the next student in line can proceed. Students may not skip a bar. 
     
  •  BASKETBALL RULES Students take turns throwing basketball in the hoop. One basketball is used when playing on a team. One to two basketballs may be used when doing basketball drills.   
 
CLIMBING WALL – Students line up on either side of the climbing wall. Three students may be on each side of the wall at a time (one student in each designated section). Students may climb to the top of the wall and climb down.
 
STRUCTURE AND SLIDES – Students may not climb up the slides, slide down backwards, on their stomachs or any other way other than seated on their bottoms. Students must wait their turn before going down the slide. You should not be so close to the person sliding before you that your feet touch them.
 
KICKBALL RULES – Use only a kickball. Two even teams. Team 1 stands behind backstop while Team 2 is outfield.  Kickball positions are: 1st base, 2nd base, 3rd base, right shortstop, left shortstop, right outfield, left outfield, pitcher and catcher. Pitcher rolls the ball to kicker. Kicker must kick the ball. If he/she misses kicking the ball or it goes foul, it is a strike. Three strikes the kicker is out. If the kicker kicks the ball in play, he/she must run to 1st base before being tagged out or before the ball reaches the pitcher. Team 1 is out once they reach 3 outs.
 
JUMP ROPE RULES – The jump rope is used for jumping only. Hold jump rope ends with both hands. You may jump with one foot or with two feet. No tugging of the rope with another student. Jump rope only in the designated area of the playground. Students waiting will count to 60 on a student before it is their turn.
 
HULA HOOP RULES – Place Hula Hoop around the waist only. NO tugging Hula Hoop with another student. No twirling hoop around the neck. Students waiting will count to 60 on a student before it is their turn.
 
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The Poway Unified School District (PUSD) is an equal opportunity employer/program and is committed to an active Nondiscrimination Program. PUSD prohibits discrimination, harassment, intimidation, and bullying based on actual or perceived race, color, ancestry, national origin, nationality, immigration status, ethnicity, ethnic group identification, age, religion, marital or parental status, physical or mental ability, sex, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, or gender expression or association with a person or a group with one or more of these actual or perceived characteristics. For more information, please contact: Title IX/Equity Compliance Officer, James Jimenez, Associate Superintendent of Personnel Support Services, Poway Unified School District, 15250 Avenue of Science, San Diego, CA 92128, 1-858-521-2800, extension 2121, jjimenez@powayusd.com. For students, you may contact Title IX Coordinator Jamie Dayhoff, Director of Attendance and Discipline, Poway Unified School District, 1-858-521-2840, jdayhoff@powayusd.com

Poway Unified School District, 15250 Avenue of Science, San Diego, CA 92128-3406