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Durham Region Police Service
The schools Code of Conduct govern all students at every high school. The Code is based on the Safe Schools Act, which is a Provincial Act.
The Code is printed in student agendas, is generally on the school web site, and information can be obtained from your Vice Principal. It outlines your roles and responsibilities as a student. If you are not sure about an item, ASK before you act!
Current Municipal, Provincial and Federal laws and statutes govern all students, staff, parents and visitors to the school.
As a parent, you may have heard the term "school lockdown" from you child or on the evening news.
A school may go into " lockdown" when an incident occurs near or inside a school that may present a danger to students and staff. A lockdown can be called by the admin staff at the school or by police or emergency services if required.
A lockdown is like any other safety procedure, in that its purpose is to keep students and staff safe. Most lockdowns occur for relatively minor incidents, and last a short time.
In the event of a longer situation, or one that involves various emergency services, please think of the following:
- Do not attend the school unless requested to do
- Do not call the school and tie up phone lines
- Try to remain off cell phones to you child. These lines can become overburdened, and can cause major problems for emergency services.
If you are made aware of a lockdown by your child, and you are not sure of the reason or have a concern, please contact your school at an appropriate time and speak with an administrator.
Rumors can have a serious effect on the school environment, and can cause serious problems for individual students. Please avoid the "rumor mill". If you have heard of an incident that concerns you, and you wish to find out more, please contact an administrator or myself. As you are aware, we must abide by privacy laws etc. and are not able to give specific details etc.
Cell phones / MSN / Text Messaging/Video Phones:
In this day and age, many students have access to cell phones, videophones, and most use some type of Instant Messaging on home computers. Although most are used appropriately and responsibly, some are not.
Both cell phones and Instant Messaging are constantly used for sending threats, intimidation, drug deals, the organizing of and video taping of fights and confrontations and numerous other activities. These uses lead to violent incidents and rumors, causing school and police resources to be tied up on lengthy investigations.
Parents, please be aware of these issues. Students, guide yourselves accordingly. There are consequences to your actions!
Q.Are you able to enforce school rules?
A.No.Items such as skipping, truancy, dress code infractions, etc. are all governed by the school Code of Conduct, and any consequences will be administered by the school (i.e.: detentions, suspensions and expulsions).
Q. If there is a police car outside the school, doesn't that mean "trouble"?
A.No.I, along with other officers are quite often at a school to visit, or obtain information for investigations. A uniform presence at or near a school quite often acts as a deterrent to those who may be there for unlawful purposes.
Q.Do you deal with all incidents that take place at school or involve students?
A.No.Having 3 schools with 5200 students makes it impossible for that to happen. Other officers will often conduct investigations or take report at a school. These issues are quite often brought to my attention.
Many issues that occur at school are dealt with appropriately by administrators at the school level. The Safe Schools and Education Acts govern schools, and outline incidents that require police involvement. The Durham Regional Police has a protocol with both school boards regarding school investigations.
Q.My son/daughter was a victim of a crime on the weekend/in the community in the evening etc.What should I do?
A. Police should be contacted and a report/investigation should be entered into. If the suspects are other students, you may wish to contact your Vice Principal if you have concerns. At this time notify them that you have contacted police, and give them the officers badge number and incident number (request this from the officer).
Q.My son/daughter has told me that they were a victim of a crime at school, to and from school etc. What should I do?
A. Unless school officials are aware of an incident that has occurred, it is impossible for them to assist a student, or to notify police if necessary.
When it comes to police investigations and the laying of any criminal charges, a victim is required, statements must be taken from the victim and witnesses, and evidence must be gathered. A determination will then be made as to if charges are warranted, and if so, the type.
In order to lay most criminal charges, we need a victim who is cooperative and willing, if necessary to go to court. If this does not occur, we are limited in how we can assist.
If an incident occurs on school property, or is connected to the school in some way (to be determined by the school) school consequences will apply, whether or not police charges are laid.
Q.Can I request criminal charges be laid on behalf of my son/daughter?
A.No.You can advise your son/daughter and discuss the matter with them, but the final decision to pursue criminal charges (if police determine that enough evidence exists to lay them) is theirs.
Q.Will you or the school release information about another student so that I can deal with the situation/talk to their parents?
A.No.The school or police will not release this information. Personal information on students etc. is private. Incidents have occurred where a well meaning parent has taken an issue into there own hands, and has caused it to escalate, sometimes with serious consequences.
Your sons and daughters will be exposed to many things during their time at school. Most will be positive, but some are negative. As adults, we all know what the consequences of becoming involved in criminal activity are.
Most students do not tell their parents "everything" and many do not tell police and school administrators "everything", so please do not be quick to accuse or blame an individual or group until an investigation has been done.
Remain involved in your son or daughters life. Ask questions. Expect answers. Communicate with them and communicate with the school.
Incidents will occur that involve schools and students. Most are minor and isolated and can become blown out of proportion. Our tendency is to over react and we become afraid and paranoid. Do not allow this to happen.
Contact the school or my self with your concern, and we will attempt to address it.
INFORMATION IS POWER!
P.C. R. Roychoudhury #999
Durham Regional Police Service
19 Division West, Community Response Unit
1710 Kingston Rd., Pickering, Ontario L1V 1C6
Work: (905) 683-9100
Toll Free: 1-888-579-1520 X5428
Fax: (905) 683-2140