FILE: GAMC

Cf: GAE, GBKB

Cf: GBN, JDA

EMPLOYEE INVESTIGATIONS

The Livingston Parish School Board shall require the procedures outlined herein be followed when investigating employees accused of impermissible corporal punishment or moral offenses involving students and for the investigation of any employee in any case in which there is a public announcement by the Board that the employee may be disciplined whether or not there is an accompanying reduction in employee pay.

IMPERMISSIBLE CORPORAL PUNISHMENT

A. Definition

Impermissible corporal punishment shall be defined as:

1. Striking a student purposefully on any portion of the body other than on the buttocks or the use of any instrument other than a "paddle" to administer such punishment; and/or,

2. Failure to adhere to one or more provisions of policy, JDA, Corporal Punishment; and/or,

3. Using a "paddle" generally considered as one which is not reasonable in size and weight; and/or,

4. Striking a student with a "paddle" more than four (4) times for each offense and/or each occasion, with a student not to be knowingly struck more than four (4) times within a twenty-four (24) hour period.

B. Procedure

Upon receipt of an accusation against any employee of the Board of allegedly administering impermissible corporal punishment as herein defined, the immediate supervisor of such employee shall:

1. Make a preliminary investigation of such accusation by

a. Conferencing with the student, and/or parent or guardian and/or other accuser to determine nature and details of accusation. If the results of the preliminary investigation indicates that a violation of policy may have occurred, the accuser shall be requested to make a signed statement of particulars, outlining specific violations of policy.

b. Conferencing with the employee, wherein he/she shall be given a copy of allegations and given the opportunity to confirm or refute the accusations.

C. Disposition

1. If the employee admits violation of one or more provisions of this policy, or policy JDA, Corporal Punishment, a statement of admission shall be prepared by the immediate supervisor listing particulars, shall be signed by the employee, and such shall be forwarded to the Superintendent within five (5) school days.

2. The Superintendent shall within five (5) school days of receipt, recommend appropriate disciplinary action and notify the employee thereof.

3. If the employee does not accept recommended disciplinary action, he/she shall avail himself/herself of appeal procedures provided by policy GAE, Complaints and Grievances, commencing at level two and proceed there from to conclusion thereof.

4. If the employee fails to admit, in writing, a violation of policy by administering impermissible corporal punishment, the employee's immediate supervisor shall forward to the Superintendent, within five (5) school days, a statement of all particulars discovered during the preliminary investigation.

5. The Superintendent may then order additional investigation, may notify appropriate police and/or child protection authority, and/or dismiss the accusation as without sufficient merit, and/or prepare and proceed with formal charges under provisions of policy GBN, Dismissal of Professional Staff Members.

Any time an employee has been formally accused of administering impermissible corporal punishment, such employee shall be notified by his/her principal, or if said employee is the principal, by the Superintendent, to cease and desist from the use of corporal punishment on any student until such time as an investigation is made and the matter concluded.

If at the time of the investigation, in the opinion of the Superintendent, such employee poses a potential threat to any student, such employee may be suspended. Such suspension shall be with pay if the accusation of impermissible corporal punishment against employee is determined to be without merit. Such suspension shall be without pay if the employee admits or is found guilty of one or more violations of policy.

None of the particulars of the investigation shall be released by any school employee except on a "need to know basis" to those involved in such investigation, until the matter is concluded and/or time has elapsed for filing of any appeal in the matter.

MORAL OFFENSES

A. Definitions

For purposes of this policy moral offenses are defined as:

1. Any violation of social or moral conduct by an employee with a student, the proof of which could subject such employee to formal criminal charges under provision of state law; and/or,

2. Taking liberties with any student by knowingly touching or fondling such student in such manner, or involving such student in any other activity, which would constitute "sexual abuse" as defined by La. Rev. Stat. Ann. 14:403; and/or,

3. Making advances, suggestive remarks, and/or the participation of any employee with a student in an activity or conduct generally accepted as lewd, obscene or pornographic; and/or,

4. The social dating by an employee and a student when the age differential is more than two years.

B. Procedure

Upon becoming aware of any accusation of moral offense involving a student, the immediate supervisor of such employee shall:1. If student is a minor, immediately contact and involve the parent and/or guardian in the investigation of the allegations. A formal written and signed complaint shall be made by the parent or guardian before proceeding. Upon receipt of formal complaint of physical, mental or sexual abuse by an employee of the Board the immediate supervisor shall file a report with the local child protection agency for the parish. A failure of a parent to make formal written complaint does not relieve the immediate supervisor of duty to file a report with local child protection unit if his/her investigation indicates the need thereof.

f as a result of investigation by local child protection unit a child in need of care petition is filed in the courts or other legal action is taken against the employee involved, such employee shall be suspended from his/her duties, without pay, until final disposition is made thereof.

However, if an employee is not tried or convicted the Superintendent may request appropriate proceedings to dismiss the employee under policy GBN, Dismissal of Professional Staff Members, and other appropriate Louisiana law.

If the employee is exonerated, he/she shall be restored to his/her position of responsibility with full pay, including pay for time of suspension.

If the employee is convicted in a court of competent jurisdiction, the Superintendent shall prepare and proceed with formal charges under provision of policy GBN, Dismissal of Professional Staff Members, and/or proceed to institute dismissal or other policy action the Superintendent considers appropriate under Louisiana law.

2. If student is eighteen (18) years of age or older, the principal shall make a preliminary investigation by conferencing with the student and with the employee. If in the principal's opinion there is sufficient evidence, the student's parent or guardian shall be notified and student shall be required to sign a formal statement of charges before proceeding. The Superintendent shall be notified and a more intensive investigation shall be undertaken under the direction of the Superintendent. If the student does not sign the formal charges, the accusation shall be dropped and no further action shall be required.

The Superintendent may remove or transfer the employee from his/her position to any other within the school system or suspend the employee with or without pay, pending final disposition, provided that the Superintendent shall request appropriate proceedings to dismiss the employee under policy GBN, Dismissal of Professional Staff Members, and other appropriate Louisiana law.

The Superintendent may, after completion of investigation, recommend appropriate disciplinary action, which if accepted by employee, shall conclude the matter.

Should employee not accept the Superintendent's recommended disciplinary action, the Superintendent shall prepare and proceed with formal charges under provisions of policy GBN and/or proceed to institute dismissal or other action the Superintendent considers appropriate under Louisiana law.

OTHER EMPLOYEE OFFENSES

A. Definition

For purposes of this policy other employee offenses is defined as any offense in which there is a public announcement by the Board that the employee may be disciplined whether or not there is an accompanying reduction in employee pay.

B. Procedure

Upon receipt of an accusation against any employee of the Board the immediate supervisor of such employee shall make a preliminary investigation of such accusation by:

a. Conferencing with the accuser to determine nature and details of the accusation. If the investigation indicates that a violation of Board policy or rules and regulations issued by any School Board supervisory authority may have occurred, the accuser shall be requested to make a signed statement of particulars outlining specific violation of policy or rules.

b. Conferencing with the employee, wherein he/she shall be given a copy of the allegations and given the opportunity to confirm or refute the accusations.

C. DISPOSITION

1. If an employee admits violation of one or more provisions of rules or policy, a statement of admission shall be prepared by the immediate supervisor, listing particulars, shall be signed by the employee, and such shall be forwarded to the Superintendent within five (5) school days.

2. The Superintendent shall within five (5) school days of receipt, recommend appropriate disciplinary action and notify the employee thereof.

3. If the employee does not accept recommended disciplinary action, he/she shall avail himself/herself of appeal procedures provided by policy GAE, Complaints and Grievances.

4. If employee fails to admit, in writing, a violation of rules or policy, the employee's immediate supervisor shall forward to the Superintendent, within five (5) school days, a statement of all particulars discovered during the preliminary investigation.

5. The Superintendent may then order additional investigation, and/or dismiss the accusation as without sufficient merit, and/or prepare and proceed with formal charges under provisions of policy GBN, Dismissal of Professional Staff Members, and/or recommend other appropriate disciplinary action to the Board for approval, rejection or modification.

D. EMPLOYEE REQUEST TO APPEAR BEFORE BOARD

In any case in which the Board publicly announces that an employee may be disciplined, the employee shall, within thirty (30) days of the conclusion of the investigation and prior to any Board action to implement any discipline, be given the opportunity to appear before the Board in open session and be given a reasonable time, as determined by the Board, to comment on the investigation and any action taken or proposed to be taken involving the employee. The employee's request to appear before the Board must be made in writing to the Superintendent. Upon receipt of a written request, the Superintendent shall then place the matter on the agenda of the next regularly scheduled Board meeting, and the Board shall fix a reasonable time for the employee's appearance based upon the facts and circumstances involved. The employee shall be given notice of the date, place and time of the meeting by certified mail at least three (3) days prior to the meeting. The provisions of this section shall not be applicable to reduction in force instituted by the Board under policy GBKB, Reduction of Personnel, nor to any investigation of an employee.

Ref: La. Rev. Stat. Ann. 17:81, 17:81.6, 17:81.8; Board minutes, 5-89, 11-91, 11-92.