Student Handbook

On behalf of the faculty and administration, I would like to personally welcome you to Holt Junior High School. We are excited for the new school year and the success that you will experience over the next several months. As your building principal, I believe in creating a positive climate and culture where all students can thrive. I also believe that by setting high expectations academically and behaviorally, students will rise to those expectations and make the most out of their learning opportunities.

All students are required to follow school rules and behave appropriately. Our school learning community is built around our Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports (PBIS) system that creates expectations for everyone to be RESPONSIBLE, RESPECTFUL, ACCEPTING, MOTIVATED, and SAFE. Our faculty will provide you with outstanding learning opportunities along with academic and behavioral support to ensure your success. Attending school on a daily basis is essential in order to properly take advantage of the learning opportunities available. Do your part to help make Holt Junior High School a fantastic place to learn!

Increased academic challenges await you at Holt Junior High School. With the increased curriculum standards in all areas, you will need to develop effective study habits and learning strategies that will help you perform well academically. The use of individual class folders and using your agenda to keep track of daily assignments, homework, and upcoming tests will greatly enhance your chances of learning in your classes. There will be limited opportunities to turn in assignments past the due date, so stay organized.

Our goal is to help you become responsible for your own learning, develop the necessary skills to monitor your own progress, and be able to advocate for yourself. Our teachers are utilizing the formative assessment process to help provide you with clear learning goals and formative data to help you determine areas you need to improve on before major assessments are given. This approach is purposeful in that all students learn at their own rate and therefore should not be penalized for the rate of speed in which they learn. Please support their efforts in utilizing this process by always writing down the learning targets provided in class and taking time to review your materials when formative assessments and learning checks are given.

Above all, we hope that you enjoy your experience at Holt Junior High School. This is going to be an AMAZING year!! Your teachers and administrators are here to support you and will do whatever it takes to ensure you have a quality learning experience. Challenge yourself to make this year the very best it can be. Good luck and best wishes for the new school year!

Sincerely,

Robert Bobeda
Principal
Holt Junior High School

Bell & Class Times Schedules

Full Day

First Bell          7:25 am
1st Period        7:30-8:30
2nd Period       8:35-9:35
3rd Period       9:40-10:40
4th Period        10:45-12:25

  • A Lunch  10:45-11:10               Class  11:15-12:20
  • B Lunch  11:20-11:45               Class  10:45-11:15, 11:50-12:20 (Split)
  • C Lunch  11:55-12:20              Class 10:45-11:50

5th Period        12:25-1:25
6th Period        1:30-2:35        

Wednesday Late-Start Schedule

1st Period       10:05-10:40
2nd Period       10:45-11:20
3rd Period       11:25-12:00
4th Period       12:00-1:10

  • A Lunch  12:00-12:30       Class  12:35-1:10
  • B Lunch  12:40-1:10         Class  12:05-12:40

5th Period        12:25-1:25
6th Period        1:30-2:35        

Building Philosophy and Goals

Our Mission: 

To achieve success by being responsible, respectful, accepting, motivated, and safe.

Our Vision:

To work with students, staff, and the community to establish a responsible, respectful, accepting, motivated, and safe learning environment.  Students will be challenged by a rigorous curriculum that promotes global citizenship along with career and post-secondary readiness.

Responsible:

We will promote collaborative responsibility for our vision by increasing stakeholder involvement through communication and outreach.

Respectful:

All members of our school community will model positive behavior and support one another.

Accepting:

Members of our school community will embrace diversity through a variety of character education programs and humanities curriculum.  As ambassadors of the district, stakeholders will positively represent Holt Public Schools at all school functions, in and out of district.

Motivated:

Our professional learning community will use data-driven decision making processes, including I CAN statements, to challenge students to expand their intellectual, emotional, and social capacities.  Students will be encouraged to expand their emotional and social capacities through various incentive and acknowledgement programs.

Safe:

We will be proactive to the physical, emotional and educational needs of all learners to help ensure a safe learning community.

Academic Culture:

Academic Culture is the explicit teaching of active engagement, grit, and perseverance strategies to encourage student ownership of learning in order to be more successful in the future. We encourage every student to become a self-regulated learner who takes control of and evaluates one’s own learning and behavior.  Students who are self-regulated learners believe that opportunities to take on challenging tasks, practice their learning, develop an understanding of subject matter, and exert effort, will give rise to academic success.   Self-regulated learners are successful because they control their learning environment and usually exhibit a high sense of self-efficacy.  They exert this control by directing and regulating their own actions toward their learning goals and attribute successes or failures to internal factors including effort expended on a task and effective use of strategies.

Expectations & Rules

Student Academic Expectations:
 
  • Utilize student agenda to write down assignments, homework, assessments, and hall passes
  • Actively participate in class by answering questions and completing in-class projects/assignments
  • Complete all homework assignments and turn them in when due
  • Study for all assessments and be prepared to do your best in all classes
  • Come prepared to class with assignments, books, note paper, writing utensil, your agenda, etc.
  • Seek teacher support when not understanding the material that is being taught - ask for help
  • Embrace challenges with a positive growth mindset and believe you can get better with practice
  • Request homework from your teacher when you are absent
Behavior Expectations:
 
  • Be respectful to classmates, teachers, and all adults by being polite and following school rules
  • Be responsible for your learning, your behavior, and your personal belongings,
  • Be accepting of and supportive of others unique differences
  • Be motivated to become the best person you can be and not allowing others to steer you wrong
  • Be safe at all times to ensure that you never put yourself or someone else in danger
Frequently Addressed School Rules (See Code of Conduct for more detailed information):
 
  • Dress appropriately for school by following our school dress code at all times
  • Remove hat, sunglasses, head-phones, hood, and do-rag when the first bell rings
  • Put litter in its proper place - clean up after yourself in the cafeteria
  • Cell phones are to be “off and away” after the first bell and not used until after school is out
  • Appropriate language and tone is expected at all times - including during passing time and lunch
  • Bullying or harassing students in person, electronically, or by social media, is not permitted
  • Students must not attempt to misuse or cause damage to school or private property
  • Running in the hallways and horseplay are not permitted on school grounds
  • Throwing of items in the bus lane, including snow, is not permitted
  • Food and beverages must be consumed only in the cafeteria and are not taken into the hallways
  • Instigating, watching, or escalating a fight is considered disorderly conduct and is not permitted
  • Students must identify themselves when asked by staff and comply with any reasonable request
  • Computers and technology must be used for school related purposes only
  • Displays of affection such as hugging, kissing and hand-holding are NOT appropriate at school 
Parent Expectations:
 
  • Support student learning at home by reviewing student agenda, homework, and projects
  • Ensure student arrives to school on time and with appropriate materials and clothing
  • Serve as a positive role model for your child in all areas of your life
  • Sign-up for Skyward Family Access though the Holt Public Schools website
  • Monitor attendance, grades, and lunch account balance on Family Access at least weekly
  • Fill out all necessary enrollment paperwork, including our Free/Reduced Lunch form, if applicable
  • Communicate with teachers via email regarding important information about your student’s well-being as needed
Teacher Expectations:
 
  • Deliver quality instruction that is aligned with the approved curriculum
  • Provide/post clear learning targets in the form of I CAN statements for each unit of instruction
  • Treat all students, parents, and staff with kindness, patience, and respect at all times
  • Update grades once a week on Skyward Family Access for student and parent review
  • Strive to meet the unique learning and behavioral needs for each student, providing effective instruction and holding students accountable for misbehavior
  • Provide homework for students who have missed class

Grading Practice

Evaluation, Progress Reports, and Report Cards

Students will be evaluated on assignments, projects, and assessments.  Quarterly grades will be reported.  At the end of each semester, students will take a final common assessment for each of their classes.  This assessment will account for 20% of their final semester grade.  Please check grades often using Skyward Family Access as grade reports will only be only provided online and not mailed home.  All incompletes are changed to letter grades within a two week period. Make up work needs to be completed prior to the end of that two week period. During each semester, Parent/Teacher conferences are scheduled. Parents will receive a paper report card and can use this opportunity to discuss student progress in detail.

Grade Scale
Grade Percent Grade Point
A 93-100 4.00
A- 90-92 3.67
B+ 87-89 3.33
B 83-86 3.00
B- 80-82 2.67
C+ 77-79 2.33
C 73-76 2.00
C- 70-72 1.67
D+ 67-69 1.33
D 63-66 1.00
D- 60-62 0.67
E 59-00 0.00

Student Supports

Holt Junior High offers several systems of support to better serve the needs of our students, both in and out of school.  Below is a list of some of the services available and policies that guide our processes.

Child Abuse or Neglect - Board Policy A5040.2

Holt Public Schools will not tolerate abuse or neglect of students by other students, by its employees, or by the public. 

Reporting Child Abuse or Neglect by Any Adult

In conformity with the requirements of law and as a matter of policy, all employees and volunteers of Holt Public Schools will report matters of child abuse or neglect or situations where there is reasonable cause to suspect child abuse or neglect by an adult to the Department of Human Services and to appropriate law enforcement agencies.  Such reports shall be made to the Department at the following toll free, 24 hour and 7 day a week staff phone number: 1-855-444-3911

Other contact information is:
Centralized Intake [State of Michigan DHS]
5321 28th Street Court SE
Grand Rapids, MI 49546
Email: DHS-CIGroup@michigan.gov
Fax Numbers:    616-977-1154, 616-977-1158

Reporting Child Abuse or Neglect by Another Student

Where there is reasonable cause to suspect child abuse or neglect by a student or other minor, which is not reportable to the Department of Social Services, all employees and volunteers shall report such a situation to law enforcement.

Legal Basis for Child Abuse or Neglect Reporting in Michigan: Michigan Law on reporting:

  1. A physician, coroner, dentist, medical examiner, nurse, a person licensed to provide emergency medical care, audiologist, psychologist, family therapist, certified social worker, social worker, social work technician, school administrator, school counselor or teacher, law enforcement officer, or ...regulated child care provider who has reasonable cause to suspect child abuse or neglect shall make immediately, by telephone or otherwise, ...an oral report, or cause an oral report to be made, of the suspected child abuse or neglect to the department.  Within 72 hours after making the oral report, the reporting person shall file a written report as required in this act.  If the reporting person is a member of the staff of a hospital, agency, or school, the reporting person shall notify the person in charge of the hospital, agency, or school of his or her finding and that the report has been made, and shall make a copy of the written report available to the person in charge.  One report from a hospital, agency, or school shall be considered adequate to meet the reporting requirement.  A member of the staff of a hospital, agency, or school shall not be dismissed or otherwise penalized for making a report required by this act or for cooperating in an investigation.
  2. The written report shall contain the name of the child and a description of the abuse or neglect.  If possible, the report shall contain the names and addresses of the child's parents, the child's guardian, the persons with whom the child resides and the child's age.  The report shall contain other information available to the reporting person which might establish the cause of the abuse or neglect, and the manner in which the abuse or neglect occurred.
  3. The department shall inform the reporting person of the required contents of the written report at the time the oral report is made by the reporting person.
  4. The written report required in this section shall be mailed or otherwise transmitted to the county department of social services of the county in which the child suspected of being abused or neglected is found.
  5. Upon receipt of a written report of suspected child abuse or neglect, the department may provide copies to the prosecuting attorney and the probate court of the counties in which the child suspected of being abused or neglected resides and is found.
  6. If the report or subsequent investigation indicates a violation of sections 136b and 145c or sections 520b to 520g of the Michigan penal code, Act No. 328 of the Public Acts of 1931, being sections 750.136b, 750.145c and 750.520b to 750.520g of the Michigan Compiled Laws, or if the report or subsequent investigation indicates that the suspected abuse was not committed by a person responsible for the child's health or welfare and the department believes that the report has basis in fact, the department shall transmit a copy of the written report and the results of any investigation to the prosecuting attorney of the county in which the child resides and is found.
  7. If a local law enforcement agency receives a written report of suspected child abuse or neglect, whether from the reporting person or the department, the report or subsequent investigation indicates that the abuse or neglect was committed by a person responsible for the child's health or welfare and the local law enforcement agency believes that the report has basis in fact, the local law enforcement agency shall provide a copy of the written report and the results of any investigation to the county department of social services of the county in which the abused or neglected child is found.  Nothing in this subsection or subsection (6) shall be construed to relieve the department of its responsibility to investigate reports of suspected child abuse or neglect under this act.
  8. For purposes of this act, the pregnancy of a child less than 12 years of age, or the presence of a venereal disease in a child who is over 1 month of age but less than 12 years of age, shall be reasonable cause to suspect child abuse and neglect have occurred.  (MCLA 722.623.  Required reports of child abuse or neglect; disposition)
Counseling

Certified counselors are an integral part of the support staff at Holt Junior High. Some possible reasons to seek their services are: academic planning, academic problems, career concerns, family problems, schedule requests, student/student conflicts, student/teacher conflicts, successes to share, or testing information. Feel free to contact them any school day to make an appointment. If long-term counseling is necessary, they would be happy to provide a referral to an outside agency.

Course Offering Guide

A course offering guide is available upon request in the counseling office.

Library Services

The library offers a variety of materials such as computers, books, magazines, and other resource materials. Students may use the library after school, between classes, during intervention, and with class groups. During class or intervention period, students must have a library pass signed by a teacher. Students must notify the librarian when books are lost. Students will be charged for lost materials. See Internet/Technology Acceptable Usage Policy on pages 7 and 8 in the handbook.

Orientation & Student Mentors (WEB)

Before the start of the 7th grade year, a student orientation is held.  WEB (Where Everybody Belongs) is an HJH group that delivers a comprehensive orientation program.  Eighth grade WEB Leaders will be assigned to mentor 7th graders to help them feel more comfortable about coming to the JH.  WEB activities will be scheduled throughout the year to help students stay connected and build positive relationships.

Restorative Justice (RJ)

Students often have conflicts with others that may benefit from mediation to help prevent the problem from escalating to a heated argument or even a physical confrontation. Holt Junior High is fortunate to have a Restorative Justice (RJ) facilitator that is trained to help with such situations.  During the RJ process, students sit in a “circle” to communicate their feelings and emotions calmly with others involved.  Students take turns sharing their views and propose solutions.  The facilitator guides students get to the root of the conflict and then reach an agreement that will restore the relationship to one of peace and tolerance.  This process can be initiated by students or staff members.  Although not mandatory to participate, students usually find the process very positive, productive, and lasting.  At the conclusion of the circle, the RJ facilitator will communicate with parents/guardians about the results.   Sometimes, situations may require an administrator to intervene, either after a RJ circle has been attempted but unresolved, or when the circumstances are beyond the scope of the RJ process. 

Scheduling Calendar Overview

The counseling department enrolls new students in August and throughout the year as students move into the district. In November, counselors begin checking semester 2 schedules and balance those classes through January.  From February through April, presentations are made to current and future students about choosing their courses and completing forms for the next school year.  From May to July, students are scheduled in to their classes for the next year.

Support Classes

Holt Junior High offers academic support to students in many ways.  Teachers identify students that need extra support and work with them in class. Many students are enrolled in lab classes for literacy or math.

The literacy lab is designed to work on all the various skills of literacy, including: fluency, vocabulary, comprehension, word study, and reading stamina. The literacy lab meets every day for the entirety of the semester. Teachers use a computerized program called iLit, which will assess each student’s reading level and offer books and instruction at that level.

The math lab is designed to work on specific math skills which have been identified as critical for successful math experiences in the future. This class is fluid for students: students receive this support on a unit-by-unit basis. The identified students are pulled from an elective class at least 2 days a week during that unit of study.

Teams Teaching

Team teaching at HJH places groups of core teachers and their students into teams.  One math, English, social studies, and science teacher all share the same students. Their classrooms are near one another and they have a common planning period when they collaborate on instruction and also discuss strategies to better serve individual students on their team.  The administration works with the counselors and MTSS coordinator, taking careful consideration of academic and behavior data, to strategically place students on teams.  Parents may not request that their student be placed on a certain team, but they may provide input about their student to assist in their placement.

Building Practices

Assembly & Performance Expectations

Assemblies are held periodically at Holt Junior High. These may include fall, winter, and spring sports assemblies; school performing arts groups; and outside speakers and demonstrations. Students will be expected to conduct themselves appropriately and be a respectful audience. Jeering, shouting, whistling, and entering or leaving a concert during a performance will not be tolerated. When students aspire to excellence for an audience, we also expect the audience to strive for excellence in behavior and attentiveness.

Attendance Philosophy

Holt Public Schools recognizes that student attendance is critical to student success. While in school, students receive rigorous instruction, participate in collaborative learning, and gain important information about their school experience. The procedures outlined in the Code of Conduct are designed to partner with students and the community in order to ensure student attendance whenever possible. When a student must be absent, parents or guardians must call the attendance office to verify the absence. This notice must be made on the day of the absence or by 3:30p.m. of the following day.  See the “Attendance” under the “Please Review” section for more details. Parents can monitor their student’s attendance using Family Access.

Bicycles

Students may ride bicycles to school but should be very careful to follow safety rules. Bikes should be placed and locked in the racks at school. The school is not responsible for damaged, lost, or stolen bikes.

Building Hours

The building will open on school days by 7:00 and will close at 3:00, except for after school activities.  Office personnel will be present between 7:00-3:00 daily, later by appointment.  On late start days, students will not be permitted in the building until approximately 30 minutes prior to the start of class. 

Buses

A high percentage of Holt Junior High students use the bus service offered by the district. Discipline problems on the buses are considered especially severe due to the obvious safety hazards. The lives of a large number of people are at stake when any individual fails in his/her responsibilities on the bus. For the safety of all students, there are digital recording cameras placed on each bus.

Students, upon leaving their buses in the morning, must not leave school grounds and should enter the building immediately. After school dismissal in the afternoon, bused students may not leave the property expecting to return and board their buses. Students must enter buses immediately upon leaving the building after dismissal. Bus riding privileges can and will be denied to students who violate the rules.  According to district policy, only those students assigned to ride a specific bus may ride it.  Transportation department telephone: (517) 694 - 0625

Detention

If a staff member assigns a student detention for misbehavior, parents will be informed of why the detention is warranted and be given notice to arrange transportation. Usually, detention is assigned to occur after school (2:40-3:30).  However, lunch detentions may be assigned (approximately 20 minutes). Students will eat their lunch in detention.  Morning detention prior to the start of school could be assigned. When in detention, students will state in writing what they believe caused the detention to be assigned and reflect on how they can improve their behavior in the future to avoid another detention.  Once detention work is complete, students are expected to work on their classwork.  Missing a detention will be considered a “no show” and additional disciplinary action will be taken unless advance parent communication is made with HJH staff.

Leaving School Grounds

A parent must report to the attendance office and sign out their student just before leaving the building. Upon return to the building from an appointment, the student must sign in again at the attendance office before returning to class. Leaving school grounds without permission is grounds for suspension from school.

Medicine

Students who need to take medication during school hours must have a parent/guardian submit a completed medication form to the building office. Medicines must be brought in by parent/guardian, not the student, and  will be kept in the office and administered by office personnel. Medication shall not be carried with the student or kept in a hall locker, even over-the-counter medicines.  Students that have a prescription to carry epiPens, inhalers, etc., may do so after completing the proper documentation. 

Remaining After School

Unless attending a club meeting, detention, practice, or some other extra-curricular activity with a teacher present, students are not to stay in the building after dismissal. Students who have detention are expected to make arrangements ahead of time to have a ride when detention is over. Students should not wait to telephone home after detention as parents are to be made aware in advance. Students are also expected to report promptly for after school detention, sports practice, club meetings, etc. Do not linger in the building before reporting to the scheduled activity.  On cold days, students may wait for their rides in the air locks as long as they behave appropriately. 

Skateboards & Scooters

Students can ride skateboards and scooters to school, but once on school property, riding of these is not permitted.  This means no use on school sidewalks or parking lots.  During the school day, these items must be stored in the student's locker, and the school cannot be responsible for loss or theft. These items are not allowed on the bus.

Tardy Procedure

Being punctual is expected in the world of work, and arriving early or on time is an important habit to develop. When students arrive to class after the expected start time, a teacher will record them as tardy.  Students will be allowed to be tardy multiple times without consequence, but students that continue to be tardy and do not make adjustments to be punctual will be assigned discipline consequences.  A tardy procedure that outlines the specific details will be provided.

Withdrawal Procedure

When a parent/guardian determines that their student is permanently leaving the school district, they should notify the counseling center for processing.

Student Activities

Activities at the Junior High are sponsored by various clubs and organizations. Events are chaperoned by staff and parents. After-school activity hours are 2:35 p.m. to 4:00 p.m., unless special permission is granted by administration. School activities are for Holt Junior High students only. Student behavior at school activities is to be similar to conduct during the school day. School dress code is expected to be followed unless otherwise announced. Students will be expected to remain for the entire activity unless prior arrangements have been made. Students who have been suspended from school may not attend activities while they are under suspension.

After School Clubs & Activities

Students are encouraged to take advantage of any of the several opportunities to be involved in activities that promote creativity, leadership, comradery, and fun.  Below is a list of

  • Student Leadership Team
  • Yearbook
  • PALS
  • Links Crew
  • Play/Musical
  • Destination Imagination
  • Science Olympiad
  • Quiz Bowl
  • Talent Show
  • National Junior Honor Society
  • WEB (Where Everyone Belongs)
Athletics

Holt Public Schools athletic philosophy for seventh and eighth graders is designed to help young people develop mentally, physically, emotionally and intellectually to their fullest potential. Programs are designed to encourage meaningful participation and provide experiences in a variety of activities. While winning is an important aspect of any athletic event, academics, participation and sportsmanship take precedence over winning.

Sports:  HJH students have the opportunity to participate in the following interscholastic sports: Cross Country, Football, Volleyball, Basketball, and Track.  These are school sponsored sports.  There may be other community sports clubs that use HJH facilities but are not part of Holt Public School Athletics.

Physicals:  Yearly physicals are REQUIRED for interscholastic athletics.  Physicals dated April 15 or after are valid for the following school year. Students must have a physical examination form on file in the athletic director's office before they begin practice/try-outs. Physical forms are available in the main office.

Participation Fee: The junior high sports program is supported by the Board of Education which pays the coaches' salaries. However, there may be a small participation fee to help offset the cost due to transportation, uniforms, officials, etc.

Tryouts/Cuts:  Open tryouts are held for all team sports. Anyone interested in participating in an interscholastic sport is encouraged to try out. Due to limited facilities and a limited budget, cuts may be made. Each athlete will be tested on their skill level during tryouts and the results will weigh heavily in deciding who will be on the team to represent the school and community.

Rules of Eligibility:  To be eligible for interscholastic athletics at the seventh and eighth grade level, a student must meet the following criteria:

  1. Be enrolled at Holt Junior High
  2. Have a 1.67 GPA or better and be a positive leader
  3. Seventh graders must be under 14 years of age September 1st of the current year
  4. Eighth graders must be under 15 years of age on September 1st of the current year
  5. Have a physical form on file in the athletic director's office before the first day of practice/tryouts
  6. Not be a member of a non-school team playing the same sport during the same season
  7. Students who are suspended from school for violation of  will adhere to the following disciplinary guidelines:
    1. Athlete may not practice during the suspension period
    2. Athlete may not participate in games/events during the suspension period
    3. Athlete may resume practice when reinstated to classes

The Code of Conduct for Athletes is a separate document that dictates conduct standards for athletes.

Farewell Dance

This dance is for 8th grade HJH students only.  Students are encouraged to wear semi-formal dress clothing such as dress pants, collared shirts, (ties and sport coats optional), or dresses.  Hoodies are not permitted. Students that are assigned 3 or more days of out-of-school suspension during the school year may not attend the Farewell Dance.  Students must attend school at least 3 full class periods on the day of the dance. 

Fundraising

Collections and money-raising projects, other than the annual holiday basket drive, must receive prior approval from the Administration. Selling candy or other items for personal profit or non-school groups is forbidden.

Lunch Period

The Junior High has a "closed campus" lunch policy. This means that students must remain in the building the entire day.  Special considerations are handled by the parent and the administration. The gym may also be available during part of the lunch period. Hot lunch, a salad bar, and a snack bar are available for students.

After getting their lunches, students are to find a seat and remain seated at a table, clean up after themselves, keep their voices down, and keep their hands to themselves.  Security personnel supervise lunch periods and students must follow their directions. Students that misbehave during lunch may have discipline consequences, including lunch detention.

Students may not "borrow" money from others, either to pay for lunch items or for any other reason. We insist on this rule because of the many problems that come from "borrowing." It is important that the student makes arrangements for lunch every day. Students are unable to charge their lunch. They must have cash in hand or money in their account. Refunds or change will not be given on lunch accounts. Please know that by default, families within the district share the same account even if the students are in different buildings.  The parent may choose to create a separate account for each of their students through Family Access.

Student Leadership

This group is comprised of 7th and 8th grade students who are selected by their teachers and will act as the building Student Council team.

Communication

Extended Absence Form

If a student plans to be absent for parent verified reason form more than two days, please obtain an Extended Absence form from the attendance office and complete it at least 2 days prior to the start of the absences. The student will need to take the form to the teachers to get signatures and collect assignments.

Principal Communications

The Principal will send out information regarding Holt Junior High events and procedures periodically and as needed. These will be electronically sent through the email address provided at enrollment.

Skyward Family Access

Parents/guardians can access student grades, attendance, and lunch accounts, through Skyward Family Access. Register online at: www.hpsk12.net . Click on "Family Access Request On-Line form".

Social Media

Holt Junior High has a social media presence on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. The principal will post information and images from time to time. See the cover page for site addresses.

Telephones & Messages

The telephones in the school offices are for school business only. Students will not be called to the office phone to receive calls, except in the case of an emergency. Students should remember before leaving home to let their parents know when to pick them up after school events rather than depend on the use of school phones. Cell phone text and voice calls are not allowed during the school day. Students may use their phones only before the first bell and after the last bell. Parents may call to leave a message to be delivered to a student if absolutely necessary.

Safety & Security

Accidents, Injuries, & Illness

Students are directed to report any accident, injury, or illness to the first staff member available. Parents will be notified immediately if necessary. Students who become ill during the school day must report directly to the attendance office. Office personnel will attempt to determine the severity of the illness and call the parents when necessary. Under no circumstances are students to stay in bathrooms or unsupervised areas during a time of illness.

Aerosols & Perfumes Prohibited

Holt Junior High has a NO aerosol, NO perfume policy to protect our allergy and asthma sufferers in the building. Students should NOT bring these items to school. For PE class, please refrain from aerosol deodorant and opt for NON-spray varieties. Aerosols will be confiscated and not returned to owner.

Backpacks

Due to safety concerns, book-bags and backpacks are not allowed in halls or classrooms after the first bell. Students that catch first round busses after school may get a “tag” from the office to allow them to bring their backpack to their 6th period only.

Code of Conduct

The document that details policies and procedures pertaining to misbehavior, along with the
consequences for violations, is called the Code of Conduct. A hard copy may be obtained from the office upon request.

Emergency Drills

Fire, lock down, and tornado (civil defense) drill instructions are given to teachers for each teaching area. These will be discussed with students. When an alarm is sounded, all students must proceed as directed in a quick, quiet, and orderly manner. Students will be expected to remain quiet to hear any possible change of instructions. An announcement will be made or someone will come to the classroom when the drill is over.

Guest Students Prohibited

Only students of HJH are allowed to attend school during the instructional day. No guest students are permitted during after-school activity afternoons or dances, including the Farewell Dance.

Hallways

All students are expected to move about the school corridors in a careful and considerate manner. Pushing, running, and excessive noise will not be allowed. Students should not be out of their assigned classes during regular periods unless they have their agenda or written pass with them. Students are not permitted to leave the building without permission during the day. Once a student enters the school building, they are to remain here until the end of the school day. This includes late start Wednesday mornings.

Late Arrival & Early Departure

Students that arrive after school has begun must come to the attendance office to sign in. Students that need to depart prior to the normal end of the school day should inform their teacher, get a pass to the office, and must have a parent/guardian come to the attendance office to sign them out.

Lockers

Students are assigned a hall locker. Gym lockers with permanent combination locks are issued through Physical Education class. Students are encouraged to make full use of these lockers to safeguard their school and personal property. Students are not to share their combination or locker with anyone else. Lockers must be fully locked before leaving it. If a student has trouble with his/her lock or locker, he/she is to inform a teacher or administration. Locker clean outs are held periodically. A service charge will be made for any cases where changes in combinations must be made due to the carelessness or poor judgment of students in maintaining the secrecy of their combination. The student is authorized to use only the locker assigned to him/her. Locker changes must be approved by a principal. Lockers are to be kept neat and clean. No writing or stickers are allowed. School lockers are the property of Holt Public Schools. Lockers are provided to students for their convenience. There is no expectation of student privacy and therefore lockers may be randomly searched at any time. In addition, Holt Junior High School is not responsible for lost or stolen property including personal property taken from a school locker.

Passes

A student must have a properly authorized written pass whenever he or she is out of the classroom during class time. While out of class, a student should always be in possession of their signed agenda. Students without an authorized written pass will be returned to their classroom and the matter will be reported to the Assistant Principal. For most purposes, students must use the passes in their agenda or get a yellow pass from office personnel. Personal & Valuable Items Students should NOT bring personal items or large sums of money to school. These include and are not limited to: hand held games, computer games, iPads, Kindles, cameras, trading cards, playing cards, squirt guns, yo-yo's, etc. Inappropriate use of the above items may result in their forfeiture for the school year or a return to a parent only. Students who choose to bring these items are responsible for their security. Parents are advised to make a police report when property is stolen at school. The school accepts no responsibility in the loss of such items. Students violating this will be handled according to the incident. Personal care items such as: hair brushes, make-up, etc., are not allowed in the classroom and should be kept in the locker. In the event personal property is confiscated due to violation of school policy and is damaged, lost, or stolen, the district will not replace the item.

School Closings

Inclement weather conditions may force the closing of school. If a school closing is necessary, announcements will be made on social media, local radio, and TV stations, as well as via the District’s Skyalert system. Please do not call the school or school personnel.

Security & Surveillance

Holt Junior High employs security personnel who are on the school grounds and in the schools each day to assist students and staff. They carry the same authority as faculty and staff. If approached by one, please cooperate. They are enforcing policies and making Holt Junior High a safer environment for learning. In addition, there are several surveillance cameras that are installed throughout the school that are readily accessible when needed.

Smoking & Vaping

Students nor adults may smoke, vape, or use any tobacco products on Holt Public School property at any time. Student violators will be held to the Code of Conduct. Adults may be ticketed by law enforcement.

Tree Nuts Prohibited

Due to the extreme allergies of multiple students, products containing tree nuts, including peanut butter, are not permitted in the building.

Vandalism

Vandalism will not be tolerated and will be dealt with in accordance to the Student Code of Conduct. If a student should see vandalism, s/he should report it to a staff member immediately.

Visitors

Parents are welcome to visit the school. To meet with a specific teacher or administrator, please call for an appointment. Upon entering the school, parents are to come to the office first to sign in and receive a visitor badge.

Academic Practices

Acceleration of a Student

Students and parents interested in receiving additional information regarding opportunities for accelerated learning should speak directly to their classroom teacher and review the information found on Holt Public Schools website regarding our Acceleration Policy.

Agendas

The school agenda or daily planner is purchased by each student at the beginning of the school year. Agendas are like textbooks and should remain intact. Students are to carry this to every class, every day to record their daily assignments and obtain hall passes. Parents are requested to check their student's agenda frequently to monitor homework completion and for communications from teachers. Agenda use is to help students become organized and successful. Students who lose their agenda will need to purchase another from the school office for $5.00.

Awards

Honor rolls will be posted each semester to recognize students with grade point averages of 3.0 and above. Certificates will be awarded to all students who receive a 4.0 at each semester. In addition, awards are given at the end of the year at the annual Junior High Honors Night to recognize students for scholastic achievement such as academic excellence, academic perseverance, and good citizenship. Students and parents will be notified by letter if they are award recipients.

Final Exams & Make Up Policy

Exams are given at the end of each semester. Permission to complete final semester exams prior to the testing date due to a medical condition, planned vacation, moving, etc. will need to be approved by the teacher and administration.

Homework

Each student should set aside a definite time for study each day. It is recommended that time be spent working on homework assignments, reviewing and preparing for tests, independent study, reading, and projects. The length of time spent on preparation will depend upon each individual's need. Junior High students should expect to have some homework every night.

Homework & Make-Up Work

Students are responsible for all work assigned by their teachers. Make up work to be done during illness may be sent home by arrangement with the school office. Teachers have 24 hours to process a make-up homework request. A request for make-up work can be made by calling the attendance office at 694-7188. In cases of excused absence or suspension, it is the student's responsibility to request assignments missed. Students may make up work for a day of suspension.

Homework Requests for Absent Students (Excused Absences)

Due to our large enrollment and our desire to serve homework requests quickly and efficiently, we have developed these guidelines:

  • A student has one day for each day absent to make up any missed work
  • Work/tests scheduled before the absence will be due/taken upon return
  • Homework should be requested during an extended absence. Two days would be considered an extended absence
  • For a one day absence, students often call a classmate for any homework assignments
  • Rather than disturb classes during the day for assignments, please give a twenty-four (24)hour notice for homework requests to be fulfilled
  • When homework is requested, please pick it up after school in the office
Promotion & Retention of a Student

Educational research states that retaining students can cause more damage than good. Most students have built relationships with their peers and have developed experiences and levels of maturity that are consistent with their peer group. Parents and students are encouraged to speak with school administration regarding academic and behavioral programs and supports if needed.

State-Mandated & District Testing

All 7th and 8th graders are required to take the M-STEP state assessment beginning in April. It is required by the Michigan Department of Education that all students in school on the days of their M-STEP testing, take the assessment . Parents who choose to opt their student out of M-STEP testing must submit a letter to the school principal and curriculum office. Students opting out will need to be picked up from school for the entire duration of that day’s testing window. If the student does not leave the school during their assigned testing window, the student will be required to take the assessment.

Textbooks & Class Materials

All textbooks are owned by the Board of Education and are loaned to each student by the teachers. The responsibility for good care belongs to the student. Charges for lost or damaged books are assessed at the end of each course. If a textbook is lost during the year or not returned at the end of the course, the student should see the secretary in the office where the value of the lost book will be determined. Some teachers may require certain supplies be purchased for their class. Students that may have a hardship and are unable to purchase supplies should speak to the teacher and/or their counselor.

Please Review

Attendance Procedures

Absences are termed excused or unexcused. All absences, however, including illness, vacations, medical appointments and other obligations count toward total absences.

School-excused absences are exceptions and do not count toward the total number of days absent. These absences do not count towards truancy.

  • School related activities, e.g. field trips, special school events, etc.
  • Suspensions (both in-school and out-of-school)
  • Administrator or school counselor meetings

Excused Absences are absences that have been documented by the parents or guardians within three (no more than five) working days. Excused absences are counted as part of the total number of absences for the student and include:

  • Verified illness or hospitalization
  • Verified family illness or emergency
  • Verified funeral services
  • Verified religious instruction
  • Documented court appointments

Appointments should be made after school hours whenever possible. If exceptions are necessary, the parent can contact the attendance secretary.

Leaving School

When a student needs to leave the building during school hours, he or she must check out at the main office at all schools. The student must stop and check in at the office when he or she returns to school the same day. In each case an adult who is the documented contact in Skyward may sign a student out. The adult signing the student out must be physically present at the school in to remove a student from the building.

Making up Missed Assignments

All students are responsible for obtaining make-up assignments that are available from their classroom teachers. Student should contact the teacher and request schoolwork upon returning from absence.

Tardiness

Students arriving to class more than 10 minutes after the bell will be counted as absent unless excused by a staff member for reasons beyond the control of the student. The school district considers being on time a critical skill for future employment and continuity of the class lessons. Three incidents of tardiness will equal one absence. Progressive discipline will also be related to tardiness, as it is to attendance. After three tardies, a student will be issued a detention. More details on the tardiness procedure will be provided.

Extended Illnesses

If a student is out on an extended illness, the parent needs to provide a doctor's note giving the diagnosis and stating that the student is unable to attend school for a specified period of time. The student may become eligible for homebound service under certain circumstances.

Addressing Absenteeism

All unexcused absences: An automated phone call/communication is sent to the parents. If the absence is not verified within 24 hours, it will remain an unexcused absence.

Three absences: A phone call/communication will be made home. Five absences : After five days absent from one or more classes, the Attendance Office will mail a letter home, and make a phone call home. The communication will be documented in Skyward.

Seven absences: After seven absences from one or more classes, the parent/guardian and student will meet with an administrator and Problem Solving Team. The Problem Solving Team will consist of a counselor, a teacher, the student and the parent or guardian. The purpose of the meeting is to determine the steps necessary to improve attendance. In this meeting, the following will occur:

  • The student's absences and incidences of tardiness are reviewed (verified and unverified)
  • A plan and/or contract will be created and signed by all members at the meeting.
  • The plan will include the student’s obligation in collecting make-up work and returning the work in a timely manner.
  • The student will be assigned a “check in” mentor from the group who will monitor the student’s attendance for the rest of the semester.

9 absences: If the student is absent 9 times from one or more classes per semester, the parent or guardian and student will meet with an administrator. Absences beyond that meeting will result in a referral to truancy. Decisions made at this meeting may be appealed to Central Office. The appeal must be presented within 5 school days of receiving the written outcomes of the meeting. The appeal must be in writing and must state the reasons the student and parent disagree with the decision and the resolution they are requesting. This information can also be found in the Code of Conduct.

Pesticide Notice to Parents/Guardians

Each year the Holt Public School District must notify parents and guardians of the use of insect spray in the facilities. Holt Public School District, only on an as needed basis, uses the non-commercial insect spray Down & Out, Fly and Insect Killer. The product is used only in non-food areas, and its primary use is to control flies, mosquitoes, ants and other common pests that may occur. For sustained control of other pests, the district uses insect baits, which provide no airborne activity. The required Safety Data Sheet is on file for this product. If parents or guardians are aware of a problem related to their student(s) in using this product, please contact the building principal.

Policy 6310 - Bullying, General Prohibition of Bullying, Harassment and Cyberbullying

The Board of Education recognizes that a school that is physically and emotionally safe and secure for all students promotes good citizenship, increased student attendance and engagement and supports academic achievement. To protect the rights of all students and groups for a safe and secure learning environment, the Board of Education prohibits acts of bullying, harassment and/or cyberbullying.

All administrators, staff, parents, volunteers and students are expected to refuse to tolerate bullying, harassment or other aggressive and violent behaviors and to demonstrate behavior that is respectful and civil. The Superintendent is responsible for the implementation of this policy and may develop further guidelines not inconsistent with this policy.

Definition of Bullying, Harassment and Cyberbullying

Bullying and/or Harassment for the purposes of this policy, means any form of mental or physical abuse of a student by one or more students or adults and means “the repeated intimidation of others by the real or threatened infliction of physical, verbal, written, electronically transmitted or emotional abuse or through attacks on the property of another.

More specifically, bullying and/or harassment encompasses any conduct that: 1] substantially interferes with educational opportunities, benefits, or programs of one of more students: 2] adversely affects the ability of a student to participate in or benefit from the school district’s educational programs or activities by placing the student in reasonable fear of physical harm or by causing emotional distress: 3] is reasonably perceived to be motivated by ill will or by an actual or perceived characteristic*: or 4] causes substantial disruption in or substantial interference with the orderly operation of the school.

*Characteristics may include race, color, religion, ancestry, national origin, height, weight, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression; or a mental, physical or sensory disability or impairment; or by any other distinguishing characteristic, or is based upon association with another person who has or is perceived to have any such characteristic.

Bullying and/or harassment may include, but is not limited to, actions such as teasing; physically assaultive behavior; verbal taunts; making threats; name-calling and put-downs, including ethnically-based, sexual orientation-based or gender-based verbal putdowns; extortion of money or possessions; or spreading of cruel and untrue rumors within the school.

Cyberbullying for the purposes of this policy means the willful bullying, harassment and intimidation of a person through the use of digital technologies, either currently in use or later developed and used by students including, but not limited to, email, the internet, blogs, texting/sending photos on a handheld device, social websites (e.g., Snapchat, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, etc.), chat rooms, “sexting,” instant messaging, photos or video voyeurism.

Disciplinary Consequences

Students who engage in any act of bullying, cyberbullying or intimidation while at school, at any school function, activity, or event supported or sponsored by the District, or while en-route to or from school are subject to disciplinary action up to and including suspension or expulsion. Discipline shall reflect the student’s age and maturity, academic and disciplinary records and the specific facts of the incident. All students are protected under this policy and bullying is equally prohibited without regard to its motivation or subject matter. As may be required by law, law enforcement officials shall be notified of bullying incidents.

Though an incident of alleged bullying, cyberbullying or other forms of intimidation may occur off campus and may not entail threats of acts to occur during school hours, if a student’s ability to receive an education or a school’s ability to provide an education or an educationally sound environment is significantly impaired, as determined by the school district administration, disciplinary sanctions may be issued.

Retaliation Prohibited

This policy also prohibits any type of retaliation against individuals who report or cooperate in an investigation under this policy and the District prohibits retaliation or the making of a false claim against either the target of bullying, a witness to bullying or a person with reliable information about an act of bullying. Suspected retaliation shall be reported in the manner set forth below.

Complaints, Notice to Parent[s]/Guardian[s]/Investigation

Students or other individuals with information about bullying, harassment or cyberbullying shall report that information to the building principal where the student[s] attend. If that information concerns two separate buildings or programs, the report shall be made to one of the building’s principals. Students may also report such information to a teacher or counselor who will then be responsible for notifying the appropriate administrator. It will be the responsibility of that building principal to notify another principal involved in that bullying, harassment or cyberbullying. If an individual is unsure where students involved attend or if the incident involves adults, they may report it to any building principal or to the Superintendent’s office. Complaints about any administrator should be reported to the Superintendent’s office.

Upon receiving such information, it shall be the responsibility of the school building principal or assistant principal to ensure that this policy is implemented. That principal or assistant principal shall promptly start the investigation and documentation of any claim of bullying, harassment or cyberbullying and any resulting disciplinary action.

The parent or legal guardian of a victim of bullying and the student[s] accused of bullying shall be contacted and informed of the accusation and whether their student has been bullied or is an alleged bully. The parent or legal guardian of a victim of bullying and the student[s] accused of bullying will be informed of the results of the investigation to the extent consistent with student confidentiality requirements.

The above investigation needs to be completed within ten [10] school days from the day the report was received. If bullying has been found to have occurred, then building principal or assistant principal will determine the appropriate disciplinary consequence and any other action which needs to be taken.

Each incident of bullying and if sustained, each resulting disciplinary action, shall be documented by the building principal. This information shall be reported annually by June 30th to the Superintendent’s office.

This policy shall not be interpreted to prohibit a reasoned and civil exchange of opinions, or debate that is protected by state or federal law. This policy shall be included in all student and employee handbooks.

Receipt, Sharing, & Dissemination of Information (FERPA)

The Administrative Assistant to the Office of Superintendent, is hereby designated as the official Holt Public School District Contact Person for receiving information from law enforcement, prosecutors and courts relative to any matters concerning school crime and violence in the Holt Public School District. The District further recognizes its legal obligation and the staff's professional responsibility to provide necessary information to law enforcement and to ensure that confidential criminal history information and other school safety information gained through interagency collaboration is disseminated only to appropriate school personnel. School Personnel shall use this information only as necessary to assist in the safety of students and staff and the maintenance of a safe school environment. School Personnel shall provide to law enforcement, upon request, detailed and accurate building plans, blueprints, and site plans for district buildings.

The Superintendent shall see that all school safety incident reports and law enforcement and court records, including criminal histories, are kept in accordance with State and Federal law. The Superintendent shall further see that district information shared with law enforcement is done in accordance with Title IV of Public Law 90-247,20 USC. 1232g, commonly referred to as the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974.

Statement of Compliance with Federal Law - Non-Discrimination

The Holt Public School's Board of Education complies with all applicable Federal laws and regulations prohibiting discrimination and with all applicable requirements and regulations of the U.S. Department of Education. It is the policy of the Holt Public School's Board of Education that no person on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin or ancestry, age, sex, marital status or handicap, shall be discriminated against, excluded from participation in, denied the benefits of, or otherwise be subjected to discrimination in any program or activity to which it is responsible or for which it received financial assistance from the U.S. Department of Education.