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Prep school disciplinary policy re alerting colleges


Replies to: Prep school disciplinary policy re alerting colleges

  • Korab1Korab1 Registered User Posts: 338 Member
    It ALWAYS tilts in the direction of those in a position of strength.
  • suzyQ7suzyQ7 Registered User Posts: 3,013 Senior Member
    edited April 21
    " You are suspended after the first level 2"

    This is the problem. It is not a 2 strikes School. So if you are suspended after the first level 2 then the suspension automatically has to go on the college application. This is wrong.
  • doschicosdoschicos Registered User Posts: 14,670 Senior Member
    I think that is true for most schools, at least ones I am familiar with, @suzyQ7. Is it different for your kids?

    The definition of second chance or 2 strikes is not being expelled for the first offense and given another opportunity to live in the community and show that you've learned from your mistake and modified your ways. It doesn't mean that there aren't consequences for your actions. Notification of a disciplinary action by a school for breaking school rules is one of those consequences.
  • psparentpsparent Registered User Posts: 49 Junior Member
    Yes, it is expected. I promise you that the majority of SPS students violate this rule (have tried alcohol or pot) by the time they are seniors. The expectations simply don't mesh with reality - and that creates a dynamic where there is the real world and the pretend world.
  • suzyQ7suzyQ7 Registered User Posts: 3,013 Senior Member
    In reading the manual it appears that this type of situation would be handled by the disciplinary committee and therefore results vary depending on the findings of the committee and based on the history of the students behavior at the school. There is no mention of number of strikes in the manual but I will ask my kids later because I have heard them talk about students that have been expelled so I'm sure they know exactly what the rules are.
  • doschicosdoschicos Registered User Posts: 14,670 Senior Member
    edited April 21
    "I promise you that the majority of SPS students violate this rule (have tried alcohol or pot) by the time they are seniors. The expectations simply don't mesh with reality - and that creates a dynamic where there is the real world and the pretend world."

    No doubt. I know this is true, along with other boarding schools, but what do you expect school administration to do? There are two paths to take if the current situation isn't working - get stricter (one strike policy) or get more lenient and have less punishment. I would be able to provide arguments why neither would work well.

    Also, I would be wary of any school that either claims zero issues with discipline problems or a school with no reported infractions. To me, it is indicative of looking the other way. I just can't imagine that any admissions committee is that good about enrolling only straight edge kids.
  • psparentpsparent Registered User Posts: 49 Junior Member
    Yeah, I really don't know the answer. I go back to the great reply by Calimex earlier: "As luck would have it, on our flight back from visiting schools I was seated next to a man who had graduated from a HADES school. He did NOT send this kids to BS precisely because of the strict disciplinary policies in which the stakes are so high for kids being caught pushing boundaries, which is what the adolescent brain is programmed to do.

    He said it could really distort kids' development. That by senior year, kids at BS become extraordinarily good at managing two very distinct selves, one for adult consumption and one for peers. He said it made them absolute masters at keeping secrets and hiding things. (But that it didn't keep them for partying hard). He claimed it made them less likely to go to adults for help, too because it turned adults into the police. The stricter the policies, the more underground the kids' go with their behavior."

    I hope that deans take a hard look at their policies and I think they should distinguish between relatively normal teen behavior (say, sex or heavy petting by seniors and some pot smoking/alcohol away from school) which they ALL KNOW is happening and seriously dangerous, destructive, or harmful behavior that is out of the norm (driving while drunk, assault, statutory rape). I think lumping them together as they have may actually have the consequence of making the seriously bad behavior seem normal.

    I don't know the answers.
  • doschicosdoschicos Registered User Posts: 14,670 Senior Member
    To the schools' credit though I do think they differentiate between normal teen shenanigans and experimentation and the dangerous stuff. One will get you disciplined and another chance at schools other than those like Hotchkiss. The serious stuff will get you expelled and in some cases reported to the police.

    I guess it is up to each family to decide if they can live with the rules and consequences in place and, additionally, be willing to roll the dice a bit. Because one doesn't know what shenanigans their 14 year old will be up to later in their high school years.

    And sometimes you have to worry about the policies that are made and the unintended consequences of them. Example: there are much, much more serious, scary, and intense drugs than marijuana that leave one's system much faster and therefore are easier to hide because they are 1) less likely to show up in drug tests and 2) are less obvious because there is no smell associated with them. I've heard stories of kids partaking in stuff instead of weed for these reasons. Just as easily accessible, too.

    Even if our kids are at home, we still need to worry about them. At least at a boarding school if my kid is drinking (as boneheaded as that would be which teens seem to excel at) at least I didn't worry about drinking and driving.

    There are definitely no easy answers. I sure wouldn't want the job as a BS administrator.

    My kids were no angels. I've never been overly strict and have preferred to maintain an open dialogue and a "you can come to me with anything" open door policy. Maybe if I was stricter, they would have towed the line. Maybe they would have just been more sneaky and I would have had my head in the sand about what really goes on. I'm not naive, though, and know what was going on in my own day and I know there are more dangers out there now then we had access to back then.

    @psparent Thanks again for sharing your story and help creating some important dialogue.
  • preppedparentpreppedparent Registered User Posts: 2,344 Senior Member
    ^^^Honors violations like cheating and plagiarism are totally different. One senior at my student's BS, had gotten accepted by Columbia only to be found ripping off his Capstone thesis verbatim from an online source. The school had to notify admissions, and Columbia rescinded its offer. However, another top LAC still took the student despite this egregious act of dishonesty.

    It was difficult for peers however, because some Cum Laude students at the BS including my own daughter had applied to the LAC ED1, and were turned down. It left a sour taste in many mouths, that they would turn down equally bright and talented kids professing their love for the school, and in turn take a student with an egregious honors code violation who was admitted RD.
  • CaliMexCaliMex Registered User Posts: 506 Member
    I have a friend who graduated from a BS where lying is/was considered a big offense. When he was caught smoking in the woods with a group of kids that included someone who was already on probation, he was asked if he himself was one of the kids smoking but was NOT asked about the others. Years later, he says he still has utmost respect for the school for not putting him in the ethically difficult position of choosing between telling the truth and protecting a friend. He thinks it was a very deliberate and intentional move on the school's part that showed integrity and respect.
  • doschicosdoschicos Registered User Posts: 14,670 Senior Member
    I do know at many schools that lying is treated very harshly - up there with the most serious offenses carrying the potential weight of expulsion.
  • PeriwinklePeriwinkle Registered User Posts: 3,500 Senior Member
    The last I knew, an open flame in a dorm is grounds for expulsion. If a student is caught smoking in a dorm, it would be grounds for expulsion, no matter what he was smoking.

    No school wants a fire in a dorm.

    And no school wants to face the negative publicity that comes when some of their students are caught drunk or high off campus. It is not "off campus, not our problem." The distinction between on school grounds and off school grounds is something I think you're all importing from the public school (i.e., government school) realm.

    When you choose to send your child to a private school, you are choosing to give up many of the rights you take as a matter of course in public schools. Be clear on this point and expect not to sleep as well while your child is in a private school.

    Driving while drunk, assault, and statutory rape are all criminal matters, and thus beyond the school's jurisdiction. Boarders don't have cars, and day students driving cars are their parents' responsibility, unless they're driving for a school function, which is unlikely. Assault gets you kicked out, and maybe reported to the police, as does statutory rape.

    Every parent must talk with their students about statutory rape. It is not a joking matter, and it depends on the state.
    The schools we have known are very vigilant about nipping relationships beyond a certain range of ages in the bud. Some schools have adjusted their rules on teenaged relationships, but again, read the handbook.

    Colleges are very tough on plagiarism, too. There are many threads on the parents forum on students facing consequences for plagiarism in college.
  • doschicosdoschicos Registered User Posts: 14,670 Senior Member
    I agree, @Korab1, and therefore am glad it is typically treated as such.
  • roethlisburgerroethlisburger Registered User Posts: 1,722 Senior Member
    edited April 21
    doschicos wrote:
    Yes, his honesty is commendable plus his not ratting on others.

    If the OP's son claimed to smoke alone, when he wasn't, then he lied. He wasn't honest.
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