The VES School Board’s decision shall be the final administrative action to which the student is entitled.
Rules Governing the Conduct of the Hearing:
- The school board shall have the burden of proof of misconduct. The school’s representative shall be a VES administrator or an appropriate individual enlisted by the VES School Board.
- The student and his or her parents/guardian shall have the following rights: The right to be represented by legal counsel or other designated representative, however, the school is not required to provide representation; the right to present evidence, subject to reasonable requirements of substantiation at the discretion of the hearing authority and subject to exclusion of evidence deemed irrelevant or redundant; the right to confront and cross examine adverse witnesses, subject to reasonable limitation by the hearing authority; the right to have a decision based solely on the evidence presented at the hearing and the applicable legal rules, including the governing rules of student conduct.
- The hearing authority shall determine whether the alleged act(s) of misconduct have been proved by a preponderance of the evidence presented at a hearing at which the student and/or a designated representative have appeared. The hearing authority will be designated by the chief administrator of VES, and may be one or more persons. Persons qualified to serve in the position of hearing authority include the chief administrator of VES, individual VES board members, or appropriate third parties enlisted by the VES School Board. Any individual board member serving as hearing authority in a hearing cannot serve with the rest of the board as a hearing authority in a subsequent review of the same case.
- If no one has appeared on the student’s behalf within a reasonable time after the announced time for the hearing, the hearing authority shall determine whether the parent, through the student, received notice of the hearing. If so, the hearing authority shall review the school’s evidence to determine whether it is sufficient to support the charge(s) of misconduct.
- The disciplinarian shall be the VES director or a designated staff member. A hearing authority who is also a disciplinarian shall impose an appropriate sanction if (s)he finds the allegations of misconduct have been proved.
- Arrangements to make a tape recording or keep minutes of the proceedings shall be made by the administrative authority who scheduled the hearing and prepared the written notice. A verbatim written transcript is not required, but any minutes or other written record shall fairly reflect the substance of the evidence presented.
- The hearing authority may announce a decision on the question of whether the allegation(s) of misconduct have been proven at the close of the hearing. A hearing authority who is also a disciplinarian may impose a penalty at the close of the hearing.
- In any event, the hearing authority shall prepare and mail or deliver to the student, through the parent, a written decision within five (5) working days after the hearing. The decision shall include a concise summary of the evidence upon which the hearing authority based its factual determination. A hearing authority who is not a disciplinarian shall forward a copy of his or her written decision to the disciplinarian forthwith. The disciplinarian shall prepare a written decision, including reasons for choosing any penalty imposed, and mail or deliver it to the student, through the parent/guardian, within five (5) working days of receipt of the hearing authority’s report.
- The hearing authority’s decision shall take effect immediately upon notification to the parent, either at the close of the hearing or upon receipt of the written decision. If notification is by mail, the parent shall be presumed to have received the notice on the fifth calendar day after date of mailing.