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Pittsburg Unified School District

Every Scholar, Every Day. They Deserve Nothing Less Than Our Best.

Pittsburg Unified School District

Every Scholar, Every Day. They Deserve Nothing Less Than Our Best.


District Discipline Plan

The district utilizes progressive discipline. The number of interventions that each teacher shall use before removing a child from the classroom and referring that child to the principal will depend on the infraction. Some infractions require suspension and some require expulsion recommendations and expulsion. For a more complete list of violations and consequences see Progressive Disciplinary Actions (K-5) or Progressive Disciplinary Actions (6 - 12)

Conduct and Discipline

The responsibility for fostering desirable standards of conduct in the Pittsburg Unified School District is shared by the Board of Education, administrators, teachers, support personnel, parents, and students alike. The Board of Education has adopted uniform policies and procedures for student conduct and discipline with the goal of promoting a school atmosphere conducive to learning and to the safety and welfare of students and school staff.

Progressive Discipline Actions

The "K" Progressive Chart is the district guideline for discipline. School sites may adopt specific policies in addition to using these guidelines.


Teacher Suspensions and Detentions

Ed. Code 48910
For disciplinary reasons, a teacher may:
  • Suspend a student from his/her class for the day of the offense and the next day. Teachers are required to schedule parent conferences if they take this action.
  • Detain a student in school for disciplinary or other reasons for one hour after the close of the maximum school day.
  • Section 307: A pupil for whom the district provides transportation to school may be required to remain at school to participate in approved activities until the departure of the pupil in the vehicle to which he/she has been assigned.
  • Refer the student to the school counselor or appropriate administrator.

School Suspensions

Suspension is the temporary removal from ongoing instruction of a student from regular classroom activities or from school. Suspensions are not to extend beyond five (5) consecutive school days. Suspension for students considered for expulsion may be extended beyond five (5) consecutive school days by the Superintendent or his/her Designee, after inviting the parents to participate in a meeting regarding the extension of the expulsion. Education Code 48911.


A student may be expelled from school only by action of the Board of Education. When expulsion is recommended, an Administrative Hearing Panel is convened to review the case and determine if there are sufficient grounds for expulsion. The student and his/her parents are notified of their rights, which include their right to appear before the Administrative Panel and present evidence and witnesses on the student’s behalf, the right to confront witnesses against the student and the right to be represented by counsel (parent’s choice). The Administrative Hearing Panel’s findings and recommendations are submitted to the Board of Education through the superintendent.
The Pittsburg Unified School District Board of Education takes very seriously its charge to provide safe and peaceful school learning environments. To that end, the Board takes a zero-tolerance position with students whose behavior may disrupt a school.
Please be aware of the following violations for which students shall be expelled from the district:
  • Students who possess, sell or furnish a real gun at school shall be expelled.
  • Students who participate in unlawful selling of a controlled substance (drugs) at school shall be expelled.
  • Students who brandish a knife at another person shall be expelled.
  • Students who commit or attempt to commit sexual assault, or commit sexual battery.
  • Students who are in possession of an explosive
Students who commit the following violations shall be recommended for expulsion from the district:
  • Students who cause serious physical injury to another;
  • Students who possess any knife, explosive or other dangerous objects;
  • Students who possess drugs;
  • Students who commit robbery or extortion;
  • Students who commit assault or battery upon a school employee
Definition of Terms:
  • Knife - Under Ed Code 48915(a) (expulsion) a knife is defined as:
    • Any dirk, dagger, or other weapon with a fixed, sharpened blade fitted primarily for stabbing
    • A knife with a blade longer than 3.5"
    • Locking-blade knife
    • A razor with an unguarded blade.
Ed Code 48900(suspension) doesn’t define "knife." Penal Code 626.10 specifies a 2 1/2" blade as a knife. However, many districts have "Zero Tolerance" policies that make possession of any knife an expelable offense.
  • Firearm - Under Ed Code 48900 (suspension), a firearm includes an "imitation firearm," i.e. a facsimile that is substantially similar to an existing firearm.
Under Ed Code 48915(c)(mandatory expulsion), the Ed Code doesn’t provide a definition. However, Penal Code, Section 12001(b) defines a firearm as any device designed to be used as a weapon from which a projectile is expelled through a barrel by the force of an explosion or other form of combustion.
  • Controlled Substance - As listed in Chapter 2, Division 10 of the Health & Safety Code, Section 11056 et seq: the exhaustive list includes; stimulants, depressants, barbiturates, narcotics and anabolic steroids.
  • Serious Physical Injury - Serious physical injury under Penal Code 243 means a serious impairment of physical condition including, but not limited to the following: loss of consciousness, concussion, bone fracture, wound requiring extensive suturing or serious disfigurement.
  • Robbery - Robbery (Penal Code 211) is the taking of personal property of another from his person or immediate presence, and against his will, accomplished by means of force or fear.
  • Extortion - Extortion under Penal Code 518 is defined as: obtaining property from another, with consent, that is induced by a wrongful use of force or fear.
  • Sexual Harassment - Unwelcome sexual advances or other conduct of a sexual nature where the conduct has a negative impact on the individual’s work or academic performance, or creates a hostile or offensive work or educational environment. Additional information about the district's sexual harassment policy and procedures is available in the PUSD Student Handbook.


Parent Responsibilities

Parental rights are not unlimited. Parents do not have unlimited rights to access public schools. They do not have the right to
  • Abuse or intimidate school personnel;
  • Disrupt classroom and/or school activities;
  • Ignore school rules and/or district policies and procedures regarding access to school grounds.
Parents have the responsibility of developing in their children respect, courtesy, obedience to rightful authority, consideration for the rights of others and the desire to learn. They are encouraged to work cooperatively with the school in fostering these traits in their children.
Any person who willfully disturbs any public school or any public school meeting is guilty of a misdemeanor, and shall be punished by a fine of not more than five hundred dollars ($500). Education Code 32210
Any parent whose conduct in a place where a school employee is required to be during the course of his/her duties "materially disrupts classwork or extracurricular activities or involves substantial disorder" is guilty of a misdemeanor. Education Code 44811
Any person who:
  • Unlawfully fights within any building or upon the grounds of any school or challenges another person within any building or upon the grounds to fight,
  • Maliciously and willfully disturbs another person within any of these buildings or upon the grounds by loud and unreasonable noise,
  • Uses offensive words within any of these buildings or upon the grounds, which are inherently likely to provoke an immediate violent reaction is guilty of a misdemeanor. Penal Code 415.5

Student and Staff Responsibilities

All students are required to pursue the prescribed course of study, to comply with the policies and rules of the school and the district, and to follow the directions of teachers and other staff while attending school or at school-related activities. The district adheres to the principle that the best discipline is self-discipline.
All school personnel have the responsibility of fostering respect for authority and compliance with school and district policies. School staff members are responsible for maintaining a safe and orderly environment, and may take such disciplinary actions as are specified in the education code, school rules and district policies.


SARB Overview

SARB was established by legislation in California in 1975 for the purpose of diverting minor students with school attendance or chronic behavior problems from the Juvenile Court system, if at all possible.
The multi-disciplinary panel meets regularly to assist and hold accountable parents and students for habitual truancy and excessive unexcused absences. Panel members represent a wide range of agencies that can offer interventions to students and families as they work to improve student attendance and school success.
Students are recommended to the SARB Board by the school, after at least 3 attempts to change the attendance issues at the school site have failed. To achieve these purposes, the legislation provides for a multi-agency SARB.
Staying in school is the first step to a good education.
When students become truant and do not attend school, everyone loses. Students lose the benefits of instruction, the district loses income, and the community suffers from an increase in juvenile crime.
The police and sheriff departments report that unsupervised, truant young people contribute to the greatest number of crimes, including auto and home burglaries. Truants are also victims, and may get involved in drug use and drug dealing.

Other Important SARB information

  • The Compulsory Education Law clearly states that all students must attend school from ages 6-18.
  • If middle or high school students are chronically truant they may have their driver’s license delayed or revoked.
  • The parent of a habitually truant student may be jailed or fined up to $250.00.
  • Under Welfare Reform Laws, the family of a student who has irregular attendance may have monthly assistance payments reduced.
  • A student who is identified as a "habitual truant" shall have his/her work permit revoked if the truancy continues.
  • SARB Board Members may include representatives from the following agencies:
  • School District
  • District Attorney’s Office
  • County Juvenile Probation Department
  • County Health Department
  • Department of Employment and Human Development
  • Community agencies (police, counseling, etc)
        If attendance fails to show improvement after the School Attendance Review Board (SARB) hearing, the chairperson may refer the matter to the County Superintendent of Schools, the Juvenile Court or to the District Attorney. The assistance of other agencies may be utilized to ensure attendance.

Behavior Referrals to the Student Attendance Review Board

A new aspect has been added to the SARB, the behavior SARB. Students who display chronic behavior issues that cannot be solved at the school site will also be recommended to the SARB Board. Panel members represent a wide range of agencies that can offer interventions to students and families as they work to improve student behavior and school success.