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FIDELES CHRISTIAN SCHOOL FACULTY & STAFF HANDBOOK

Employment Procedures

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Employee Agreement - Fideles Mission & Statement of Faith

Employees must be in full agreement with the following.

Mission Statement—The mission of FCS is to inspire and nurture students to seek God’s truth through a college preparatory educational experience.

Core Values— Partnership with Parents, Affordable & Accessible, Deliberate Discipleship, Community Impact, Biblically Based (subject to Trustees’ adoption)

Statement of Faith—FCS exists for the Christian discipleship and education of children. In order to excel in this endeavor, Christian unity within the school is a requirement. Therefore, families applying for admission must be likeminded in regard to the practice and acceptance of the FCS Statement of Faith. Please read the Statement of Faith closely to determine if it is in accordance to your family’s personal beliefs.

  1. We believe the Bible to be the inspired, infallible, authoritative, and inerrant Word of God (2 Timothy 3:16; 2 Peter 1:21).
  2. We believe there is one God, eternally existent in three persons—Father, Son, and Holy Spirit (Genesis 1:1; Matthew 28:19; John 10:30).
  3. We believe in the deity of Christ (John 10:33); His virgin birth (Isaiah 7:14; Matthew 1:23; Luke 1:35); His sinless life (Hebrews 4:15; 7:26), His miracles (John 2:11); His vicarious and atoning death (1 Corinthians 15:3; Ephesians 1:7; Hebrews 2:9); His Resurrection (John 11:25; 1 Corinthians 15:4); His Ascension to the right hand of God (Mark 16:19); His personal return in power and glory (Acts 1:11; Revelation 19:11).
  4. We believe in the absolute necessity of regeneration by the Holy Spirit for salvation, because of the exceeding sinfulness of human nature; that men are justified by grace because of the shed blood of Christ; and that only by God’s grace and through faith are we saved (John 3:16–19, 5:24, 25; Romans 3:23, 5:1, 8–9; Ephesians 1:3-5; 2:1, 8–10; Titus 3:5).
  5. We believe in the resurrection of both the saved and the lost; those who are saved receive eternal life and those who are lost receive eternal condemnation (John 5:28–29).
  6. We believe in the spiritual unity of believers in our Lord Jesus Christ (Romans 8:9; 1 Corinthians 2:12–13; Galatians 3:26–28).
  7. We believe in the present ministry of the Holy Spirit by whose indwelling the Christian is enabled to live a godly life (Romans 8:13–14; 1 Corinthians 3:16, 6:19–20; Ephesians 4:30, 5:18).
  8. We believe that God wonderfully and immutably creates each person as either biological male or biological female, and that these two distinct, complementary sexes together reflect the image and nature of God. (Gen. 1:26-27)
  9. We believe that God created marriage to be exclusively the union of one man and one woman, and that intimate sexual activity is to occur exclusively within that union (Gen. 2:18-25; I Cor. 6:18; 7:2-5; Heb. 13:4)
  10. We believe that any form of sexual immorality (including, but not limited to, adultery, fornication, homosexual behavior, bisexual conduct, transgenderism, bestiality, incest, or use of pornography) is sinful and offensive to God. (Matt. 15:18-20; I Cor. 6:9-10)

The Statement of Faith for Matters of Belief and Conduct: The statement of faith does not exhaust the extent of our beliefs. The Bible itself, as the inspired and infallible Word of God that speaks with final authority concerning truth, morality, and the proper conduct of mankind, is the final source of all that we believe. For purposes of Fideles Christian School’s faith, doctrine, practice, policy, and discipline, the board of trustees is Fideles’ final interpretive authority on the Bible’s application.

 

 

Method & Content

The goal of the partnership between parents and school is to raise children to adulthood who are prepared to fulfill their God-given mission in life. The purpose of education is to equip students to be God-honoring stewards of themselves, their families, their careers, and their communities. Their education must be relevant, competitive, and profitable in the context of their culture.

Method

  • We provide a schedule that combines classroom instruction by a qualified teacher who gives home assignments that are overseen by a parent.
  • Our program is administered by qualified, experienced staff.
  • The educational method is traditional. Our program is integrated vertically, from grade to grade, and horizontally, across subjects within a grade.
  • We will treat each student as an individual, loved by God and blessed with different talents, gifts, and abilities. We will assist them to develop their varied talents in service to God.
  • Our facility will be safe, convenient, conducive to learning, aesthetically pleasant, and technologically current.

Content

  • Our academic program will be accredited, academically sound, and comprehensive. It will present a culturally relevant Christian world view. In light of this, it will not include content promoted by a world view consistent with Critical Theory which is based in atheism. This chart contrasts a Biblical world view with Critical Theory.

World View

Problem

Solution

Redemption/Forgiveness

Christianity

Sin (alienation from God): Sin results in abuse of power and exploitation of the weak.

Reconciliation with God through Jesus leading to the TRUTH that we first love God and then love others as we love ourselves.

Yes! We become new creations, old things are put away and a new life is begun. Everything changes—especially how we see others.

Critical Theory (Godless, atheistic)

Imbalance of Power: Excessive power resting with one group results in abuse of power and exploitation of the weak.

Transfer of power from the oppressive group to the oppressed group(s).

No. You are born into your group and there is nothing you can do to receive redemption or forgiveness for the wrongs of your group – no individual response or responsibility.

  • Our program of study will include a progressive course of Biblical instruction that is integrated into regular academic subjects in middle and high school, and taught as a separate subject in elementary school.
  • Classroom size will be limited so as to promote an atmosphere where students can better receive acceptance, encouragement, and individual attention.
  • All extra-curricular activities will reflect our values and will emphasize excellence, opportunity, and encouragement.
Employee Conduct

Employees agree to conduct themselves in a manner that reflects the priorities and character of Jesus Christ both on the job and in the community.

Community—The employee understands that public behavior will impact witness and influence with parents and impressionable students. In light of this, the employee will refrain from using social media and other public forums to publish views or content that contain profanity, immoral behavior, and unkind, polarizing speech, and disagreements with school policies, procedures, or personnel.

Social MediaGuidelines for the use of social networking sites by school employees:

  • Do not accept students as friends on personal social networking sites. Decline any student-initiated friend requests (at least until after the student has graduated). Do not initiate friendships with students.
  • Remember that people classified as “friends” have the ability to download and share your information with others. Post only what you want the world to see. Be aware that your students, their parents, your administrators, and co-workers may see what you post. On a social networking site once you post something it may be available even after it is removed from the site.
  • Do not discuss students or coworkers or publicly criticize, disparage, or joke about school policies or personnel.
  • Employees should feel free to express political and social opinions. However, those opinions should not contain material that reflects poorly on our Christian values and tarnish the image of the school within the community at large.

Employee Dress Code—Employees will need to adhere to the Fideles Christian School Employees’ Dress Code. As role models and representatives of Jesus Christ to the students, employees should practice extra care in choosing their clothing. The following is a list of guidelines for school days: 

  • Dress should be neat, clean and professional.
  • Jeans must not have holes or rips, be worn and faded, and may not be excessively form-fitting.
  • Shorts may be worn that are similar in style to students’ uniform shorts and are no shorter than three inches above the knee.
  • Avoid thin-sheer material that is see-through.
  • Shirts should not be tight fitting or cut to show cleavage. No casual t-shirts.
  • Clothing should fit so that when bending, lifting, moving around in the classroom the teacher is not exposing skin or underwear that should be covered.
  • No spaghetti straps, halters or bare backs.
  • No tank-tops without a shirt, jacket or sweater worn over.
  • Leggings may be worn with a tunic/skirt/dress of length described below.
  • Skirts/dresses should be no shorter than 3 inches above the knee cap.
  • Shoes should not be overly casual; i.e. old sneakers, flip flops.
  • Athletic shoes should be in good condition.
  • Thong sandals should not look like beach wear.

Church Membership—The employee agrees to be an active member and regular attendee of a Bible-believing church that is in agreement with the Fideles Statement of Faith.   

Service Above and Beyond—As an employee of a Christian school, the employee must understand that there are expectations of service beyond classroom instruction.

  • The teacher/employee shall be prepared to perform mentoring duties including, but not limited to, supporting students with academic struggles, encouraging students when needed and appropriate, and informing parents and/or administration of extreme academic and behavioral concerns.
  • The teacher recognizes that the position requires some flexibility and willingness to perform tasks, as needed which are not specifically germane to the position.
  • The teacher must attend the following events: Parent-Teacher Conferences, School Programs, Staff & Departmental Meetings, Training Programs (scheduled by administration).
  • The employee may be scheduled to help with the following duties based on availability: Carpool, Lunchroom Supervision, Playground Supervision, Field Trip Attendance.
  • Teacher shall also be willing to attend programs for student extracurricular activies such as social activities, sporting activities, drama, student organization induction ceremonies. Some of these activities will be on an invite-only basis.

 

Employee Contract and Compensation

Contract— Employment contracts will be for a single school-year. Contract renewal will be offered annually during the Spring school term.

Compensation— Salaries are paid monthly by electronic transfer to employee’s bank account on the 10th of the month or the Friday before the 10th if it falls on a weekend. The first year of employment, and employee will be paid on a 10-month pay cycle, unless they are a 12-month employee.  After the second year of employment, an employee may elect a 10-month payment cycle or a 12-month payment cycle.

 

 

Faculty & Staff Training and Meetings

Employees shall attend meetings as scheduled and required by their supervising director. There will be at least two days of faculty and staff orientation the week before the new school year begins. There will be monthly faculty meetings scheduled by the school directors. All teachers are expected to attend and must contact their director in advance if they cannot.

Teachers will have two half-day teacher workdays each semester. On these days students will be dismissed early and teachers will have free-work hours or departmental meetings in the afternoon. During at least two monthly faculty meetings each semester and scheduled departmental meetings, teachers will collaborate on classroom strategies to improve instruction and student learning.

Employees wishing to engage in out-side professional development opportunities may request a percentage of financial reimbursement from the school for that cost. The request should be presented in writing to the supervising director. Decisions will be made based on relevance and benefit of the training to the school, and availability of funding.

 

Employee Personal Days

Employees are allowed one work week of paid personal days each semester. That is two days for 2-day teachers and three days for 3-day teachers. Extraordinary circumstances are taken into consideration. Days absent beyond the allowance will require a reduction in pay for the cost of a substitute. A teacher should not take any personal days during the first two weeks of school except for extraordinary events that cannot be avoided.

Teachers are responsible for scheduling their own substitutes in coordination with the school Administrative Assistant. Excessive absences are defined as when a teacher’s absences from the classroom become detrimental to that teacher’s ability to be effective in the classroom.  Fideles Christian School strives for continuity in the classroom and absences by staff are deemed disruptive to this goal.

Employees may request a personal day and a substitute by filling out a Staff Personal Day Request Form at least three days prior to the requested absence. The form can be found in the Fideles App under Staff Login.

In case of illness or other unexpected, sudden event, employee must contact Michelle Whitfield to inform the school of the absence and to obtain a substitute.

 

 

Employee Termination or Resignation

Grounds for Termination by Employer—Employees may be terminated if during the term of contract, the supervising administrator determines that the employee has been negligent in any of the following areas:

  • Excessive absences, as defined above under Personal Days.
  • Departed from the Statement of Faith.
  • Moral failure.
  • Becomes a detriment to the growth and successful functioning of the school.
  • Failure to comply with the policies set forth in this employee handbook.
  • Failure to uphold any or all parts of this agreement may result in an immediate termination of this agreement. There may be no further compensation or financial obligation of this agreement by the school.

A teacher who has been terminated will have the right of appeal.  The appeal should be in writing and addressed to the Head of School. If resolution of the dispute and reconciliation do not result from such efforts, arbitration will be pursued according to the Arbitration Procedures below.

Resignation of  Employee—Should an employee resign while under contract, a thirty-day written notice is required.  The written notice must justify reasons for the resignation and include a departure date.  The school has the right to approve or disapprove the resignation and date or the teacher will be in breach of this contract.  Compensation will be adjusted for actual days worked.  After resignation date, the school has no further compensation or financial obligation to the contract with teacher.

Employee - Employer Arbitration Procedures

Arbitration Procedures—The parties to this agreement are Christian and believe that the Bible commands them to make every effort to live at peace and to resolve disputes with each other in private or within the Christian community in conformity with the Biblical injunctions of I Corinthians 6:1-8, Matthew 5:23-24, and Matthew 18:15-20. Therefore, the parties agree that any claim or dispute arising out of, or related to, this agreement or to any aspect of the school relationship, including any claim or statutory claims, shall be settled by Biblically-based mediation.

If resolution of the dispute and reconciliation do not result from such efforts, the matter shall then be submitted to arbitrator(s) for binding arbitration.  The selection of the arbitrator(s) and the arbitration process shall be conducted in accordance with the Rules of Procedure for Christian Conciliation as printed in the Christian Conciliation Handbook.

The parties agree that these methods shall be the sole remedy for any controversy or claim arising out of the school relationship or this agreement and expressly waive their right to file a lawsuit against one another in any civil court for such disputes, except to enforce a legally binding arbitration decision.

Each party, regardless of the outcome of the matter, agrees to bear the cost of their own arbitrator and one-half of the fees and costs of the neutral arbitrator and any other arbitration expenses.

General Conflict Resolution—Conflicts should be handled on a personal basis seeking to involve as few participants as possible based on the principal of Matthew 18:15-20.

Observation and Reviews

Teachers will be reviewed at least twice a year. Reviews may involve classroom observations using ELEOT, student/parent surveys, and periodic gradebook reviews. Early 2nd semester each employee will meet with the Director or Head of School to discuss performance, curriculum, and intent for the next school year.

Teachers shall use a planning period at least one time each year to participate in a peer observation. The peer observation should be scheduled in advance with the teacher being observed. The purpose of the observation is solely for the benefit of the teacher doing the observation.

 

Elementary Classroom Procedures

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Elementary School Days

Teaching Days

  • Monday & Wednesday: Pre-K, K, 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4th grades. Teachers’ workday begins at 8:45 and ends at 3:15. Teachers are asked to report to their classroom at least 15 minutes before their workday begins to prepare for the day.
  • Tuesday & Thursday: K, 1st, and 2nd grade teachers’ workday begins at 8:30 and ends at 3:15. Teachers are asked to report to their classroom at least 15 minutes before their workday begins to prepare for the day and receive early student arrivals.
  • Tuesday & Thursday: 3rd and 4th grade teachers’ workday begins at 8:15 and ends at 3:15. Teachers are asked to report to their classroom at least 15 minutes before their workday begins to prepare for the day and receive early student arrivals.
  • Tuesday, Thursday & Friday: 5th & 6th grade teachers’ work day begins 15 minutes before schedule class time and ends after carpool.

Academic Days—teachers are to prepare lesson plans and assign work for each academic day. An academic day is every school day on the calendar, both in the classroom and at home.

Special Event Days—There are several grade-specific Special Event Days built into the school calendar. They are:

  • Pilgrim Feast (PreK-2nd Grade)
  • American Heritage Day (3rd-4th Grade)
  • Poetry Recital (PreK-4th Grades)
  • This Day in History (5th-6th Grades)
  • Science Fair (6th—8th Grades, elementary optional)
  • Standardized Testing Week (1st-9th Grades)
Elementary Planning

Fideles Christian School Annual Calendar is available on the school website, in FACTS Family Portal and on the Fideles App. Teachers need to use the school calendar to map out the year for each subject taught to make sure all of the required material is covered in the course of the school year, taking into account Special Event Days that will require class time. 

Lesson Plans—Teachers are to create Lesson Plans for every at-school day. Lesson Plans should be entered into the Lesson Plan section of FACTS SIS.  They should outline instruction and class work (including quizzes and tests) that are completed in class on at-school days. Adequate information should be provided so a parent can follow lessons given at school.

Homework—Homework is the designation for work completed by the student on at-home days under the supervision of parents.  Homework assignments are to be entered in the Homework section of FACTS SIS.  Homework assignments need to give the parents enough detail to supervise/instruct their student at home.  Homework is understood to be due the next at-school day, unless the teacher gives other instructions in FACTS. 

Homework assignments must be posted for the entire week no later than 8:00 Monday morning. If an adjustment must be made to the homework for the week, the teacher must email parents to inform them of the change.

Homework assignments must include clear instructions and advance notice of tests, quizzes, projects, special events, or recitation deadlines.  The information should be concise, but include all relevant information for the parent to understand what is to be completed and how to help their student be successful.  Assignments should be given as “bullet points” and not in long paragraphs, so that they are easy to read and follow.

Homework Expectations — These are general guidelines for the amount of homework teachers should assign on home days based on grade level. Language Arts and math will usually have more work than other subjects, though some days that will vary based on special events and projects. Times will vary based on the pace at which individual students work.

Kindergarten: 2-3 hours
1st & 2nd grades: 3-5 hours
3rd, 4th & 5th grades: 4-6 hours
6th grade: 5-6 hours

Tests—As a rule tests must be given at school. For lower school only, tests may occasionally be sent home to be given by parents ONLY if that test is recorded in the gradebook as a “home test.” A “home test” must be weighted in the grade book no more than 60% of the weight of a school test. The purpose of the “home test” is to help the teacher manage testing in a two-day school environment. Please contact the Renweb support faculty member for help in weighting tests in the gradebook.

Teachers should space testing so that history, science, and language tests are not given on the same day. Spelling and math tests may be paired with another major test, but major subject tests must be scheduled on separate days. Parents should be given clear review instructions so major tests can be prepared for at home.

Newsletter—Teachers will create a monthly newsletter to be sent home in the student folder on the last school day of the month for the following month. The newsletter will give a calendar of classroom events for the month, new concepts to be covered in the upcoming weeks and how parents can teach them at home, student birthdays for the month, plus additional information the teacher feels is important to communicate to the family. Teachers who wish to use an online newsletter MUST coordinate with other elementary teachers so only ONE online newsletter app is used across grades. Multiple communication apps causes confusing in homes with students in multiple grades.

Emergency Sub Plan— Teachers will create a daily routine plan for substitutes teachers and submit it to Michelle Whitfield as a Word Doc or pdf to be kept electronically in the school office. This plan will include information related to how the day is generally structured, i.e. how student helpers are chosen and what they do, academic procedures such as how much work is done in class and how much is sent home (by subject).  Basically, any general information that will help the sub move smoothly through the day.

 

Elementary Gradebooks and Grading

The gradebook is the teacher’s main tool in FACTS SIS for assignments, grading, and communication. Teachers MUST use the FACTS SIS gradebook as their primary gradebook, and the gradebook MUST be setup according to the guidelines given in your teacher training session during faculty orientation.

Grading—Assignments must be graded and entered into the gradebook in a timely manner.  As part of the partnership with parents it is imperative that the gradebook reflects the student’s progress and clearly indicates missing or failing work.

  • Daily class work and homework assignments, as well as quizzes, should be graded and returned to students by the next school day.
  • Tests and larger projects should be graded and returned to the students within one school week.
  • All final grades must be recorded in FACTS within one week following the end of the term.

Graders— Teachers may be allowed to utilize a grader.  The hours that any one teacher may use a grader will be determined and approved by the administrative staff of Fideles Christian School.  It is required that the teacher still review the graded work whether the teacher grades the work or not. The teacher is responsible for determining if the students are grasping the concepts and must review homework to make this assessment so that the classroom teaching may be appropriately modified if necessary.

Intervention—If any student shows deficiencies in any area, such as an average below 75%, two or more failing test or quiz grades, or an ongoing failure to turn in assignments (either on time or at all), the parents should be contacted immediately to discuss what can be done to correct the situation. If the situation does not improve after the first contact with the parent, the teacher will refer the student to the Parent Support Coach and the Student Success Coordinator for monitoring.

Late Work Policy—This Late Work Policy is  designed to promote self-discipline, diligence and self-control in the lives of the students and accountability for parents:

  • An academic (grade) penalty will be assessed for any work turned in late, unexcused. Excused late work would be for illness or pre-arranged absences communicated in advance of the work being turned in.
  • Unless prior arrangements have been made with a teacher, or unless there is sufficient reason for late work, no work will be accepted more than one week beyond its original due date. This will assure that a student’s grade at any given time is a reasonably accurate reflection of actual work and achievement up to that time.

Academic penalty:

  • 1 class day late: -10 percentage points off the grade
  • 2 class days late: -20 percentage points off the grade
  • 3 class days late:  a zero in the grade book

Incomplete Work Policy for “At-School” Days—When a child 2nd grade and above fails to complete an assignment that should have been completed at school, the assignment will be sent home at the end of the school day with a BLUE note attached informing parents that the work was not completed as required in class. The work should then be completed at home independently. Parents must not assist the student with this assignment, as this would give the student an unfair advantage over classmates that completed the work in a timely manner at school.

After receiving FIVE blue notes, a parent conference may be scheduled. This policy is designed to help students learn the importance of completing assignments on time and staying on task throughout the day at the same pace as their peers. It is always our goal to make sure our students are prepared for the next year.

Grading Work Completed at Home—All work completed on home days will be returned to school to be checked for completion and accuracy. In order to accurately gauge a student’s grade level progress, work done in the classroom will be a larger percentage of a student’s average grade in a subject. Work completed at home is expected to be completed at a higher level of competency than work completed in the classroom because at home a student receives more personalized attention.

During the first nine weeks of school, teachers may give students the opportunity to correct work completed at home when adequate competency has not been demonstrated. The corrected work may receive no more than a 10 point improvement on the original grade. For the last three quarters of the school year, students will receive the grade for the first attempt on the home assignment. If a parent sees that their student is struggling with understanding an assignment and the parent is unable to help, then the teacher should be immediately contacted and asked for assistance in teaching the assignment at home.

Grading Scales
Kindergarten and 1st Grade

0-100 Scale

Letter Grade

91-100

E

86-90

S+

76-85

S

70-75

S-

0-69

U


2nd – 6th Grades

0-100 Scale

Letter Grade

90-100

A

80-89

B

70-79

C

0-69

F

Elementary Academic Probation—  Students must have a grade average of all core subjects (language, math, science, and history) above 75% at the end of a quarter in order to remain in good academic standing.  If a student has 75% or lower average for all core subjects, the student will be placed on academic probation for the next two quarters.  Parents, teachers, and school administration will meet to implement an academic plan to aid the student in higher academic achievement.  If a student is unable to improve after two quarters on academic probation, it may be recommended that the student be placed in a five-day program.

 

Elementary Classroom Management

Teachers are expected to manage student behavior in the classroom by establishing and enforcing rules and procedures in concordance with Fideles’ Discipline Policies (below) and Student Code of Conduct (pg 29).

Discipline Policies—We consider parents to be the primary disciplinarians of their students.  In order to assure that every family’s investment in time, energy, and money is protected and maximized, it is necessary to establish rules of discipline to maintain an orderly environment on campus and in classrooms.  These rules will be enforced by a system of demerits issued at the discretion of the teachers and administration according to the following categories:

  • Disruptive behavior:  any behavior that is distracting to the teacher, the student, or the class; any disrespectful behavior
  • Dangerous or injurious behavior:  any behavior that is potentially dangerous or harmful to the student or other students (physical or emotional)
  • Immoral behavior:  any behavior that is Biblically inappropriate (language or actions)
  • Destructive behavior: any behavior that is destructive to school property

Each teacher will be given latitude to determine the “demerit” system for their classroom. For example: moving a clothes pin from green to yellow to red. Students in the early grades will be given a couple of weeks at the beginning of the school year to adjust to the teacher’s expectations.

Minor infractions will receive one “demerit”.  If a student reaches three demerits in one day, he or she should be sent to the school office for a “time-out.”  The parent will be notified by the teacher that this action was taken. 

Infractions of a chronic or serious nature can receive more than one demerit including three at one time and immediate removal from the classroom. Students who persist in disrespectful, disruptive, dangerous, immoral or destructive behavior may be subject to suspension or, in extreme cases, expulsion.

Suspension restricts a student from attending or participating in any school activity during the duration for the suspension.  A student who has been suspended is not permitted to make up any work that has been assigned during the period of suspension.

Expulsion results in the immediate dismissal from all classes and activities and the expulsion must appear on the student’s permanent record.

Classroom Communication

Classroom Communication—Clear and regular communication with parents is vital. When parents (or students) email a teacher with a question or concern, teachers must reply within 2 hours of reading the email.  If necessary a teacher may say, “Thank you for your question. I need more time to give you a response. You will hear back from me tomorrow.”  Teachers are expected to check their emails periodically throughout the day on “at home” days in case students or parents have a question regarding an assignment. Teachers should clearly communicate to parents how to best contact them when not in school.

Teachers must use FACTS SIS Communication for all correspondence with students and parents.  Teachers must have daily access to their Fideles email because that is the email parents will use to contact them.

Teachers must make a written account of any communication with a parent (written or verbal) that rises above the normal assignment inquiry communication.  This is to be recorded in FACTS SIS under Student; P/T Conference.

Communication beyond the Classroom—In order to have a consistent brand to our school communications, any communications to groups, other than classroom communications, must go through the school’s communication email. Send the email you need distributed to Communications@FidelesChristianSchool.com with the following information:

  • the audience
  • the content (worded to go out with all relevant information)
  • attachments, photos, or flyers (must be png or jpg)
  • include reply to information if a reply is needed
  • indicate if you need this to also be an announcement in the app and Family Portal

This includes school-wide emails, multi-class emails, extra-curricular activities emails, etc. If you aren’t sure, please ask.

Middle & High School Classroom Procedures

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Middle & High - School Days

Work Days—7th—12th grade teachers teach in the classroom on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays.  Their workday begins with their first class and ends with their last class.  Teachers are asked to be at school at least 15 minutes before their workday begins.

Academic Days—teachers are to prepare lesson plans and assign work for each academic day. An academic day is every school day on the calendar, both in the classroom and at home.

Parent Instruction Days—there may be 1 or 2 parent instruction days on the school calendar.  These days are at-home days used for review and enrichment; any work will not be graded and included in the gradebook.  Teachers may, but are not required, assign short review activities that will help the students progress in the class.

Special Event Days—There are two middle/high school Special Event Days built into the school calendar. They are:

  • Science Fair (6th—8th Grades)
  • Standardized Testing Week (K-9th Grades)

Special Trips—There are annual missed school days due to school sponsored trips. Please check the school calendar for exact dates. The Savannah Trip and the High School Retreat are the only events that all students generally attend. The other trips involve groups of students but not the entire grades.

  • 8th Grade: Savannah Trip, Spring semester
  • 9th – 12th grades: High School Retreat, end of September
  • 9th grade: TeenPact, early Spring
  • 11th – 12th grades: Washington, DC or Andros Island, Bahamas (alternating years)
Middle & High School Planning

Fideles Christian School Academic Calendar is available on the school web-site, on FACTS SIS and Fideles App.  Teachers need to use the school calendar to map out the year for each class taught to make sure all of the required material is covered in the course of the school year, taking into account Special Event Days (see above) that will require class time. 

Teachers MUST utilize the shared Google Tests & Projects Calendar.  Tests, projects, and term papers, must be recorded on the calendar on the date due.  No grade level shall have more than two major items due on one day.  If two major assignments are already recorded on a given date for a grade level, then the teacher must change the due date of their assignment to another day.  Training may be requested on the use of calendar. This is not optional. Notify front office if you cannot access this calendar.

Lesson Plans—Teachers are to create Lesson Plans for every at-school day.  Lesson plans should be entered into the Lesson Plan section of FACTS SIS.  They should outline instruction and class work (including quizzes and tests) that are completed in class on at-school days.  They need to provide enough information so a parent can follow what is covered at school.

Homework—Homework is the designation for work completed by the student on at-home days under the supervision of parents.  Homework assignments are to be entered in the Homework section RenWeb1.  Homework assignments need to give the parents enough detail to supervise/instruct their student at home.  Homework is understood to be due the next at-school day, unless the teacher gives other instructions in FACTS SIS. 

Homework assignments must be posted no later than 6:00 am on the day they are to be completed at home. If an adjustment must be made to the homework after 6:00 am, the teacher must email students and parents with the complete assignment and all attachments, links, etc. needed to complete the assignments. Students should NOT be punished for late work if a change is made to assignments after 6:00 am.

Homework assignments must include clear instructions and advance notice and regular reminders of tests, quizzes, projects, special events, or recitation deadlines. The information should be concise, but include all relevant information for the student and parent to understand what is to be completed and how to be successful. Assignments should be given as “bullet points” and not in long paragraphs, so that they are easy to read and follow.

Homework Expectations—These are general guidelines for the amount of homework students can expect on home days based on subject. Times will vary based on the pace at which individual students work, special events, tests, and projects. These are general guidelines, but please try to follow them in order to prevent students from being overwhelmed with home work.

  • Math & English: each of these subjects will average 90 minutes of homework
  • Science & History: will average 30-45 minutes of homework
  • Spanish: will have 45-60 minutes of homework
  • Electives: will have 20-30 minutes of homework (adjust down for 1-2 day electives)
  • AP & Honors classes will have more homework

On average students in upper school students will have 5-7 hours of homework. Students in 10th, 11th, and 12th grades may have up to 8 hours of homework on days when working on research papers and special projects. You can remind students that it is extremely important for them to learn time management and be prepared to do work on weekends or weeknights when needed, especially in high school.

 

Gradebooks, Grading, and Academic Procedures

Gradebook and Grading—the gradebook is the teacher’s main tool in FACTS SIS for assignments, grading, and communication. Teachers MUST use the RenWeb gradebook as their primary gradebook and the gradebook MUST be setup according to the guidelines in Gradebook Set-Up section of this manual.

Grading—Assignments must be graded and entered into the gradebook in a timely manner.  As part of the partnership with parents it is imperative that the gradebook reflects the student’s progress and clearly indicates missing or failing work.

  • Daily class work and homework assignments, as well as quizzes, should be graded and returned to students within two school days.
  • Tests and larger projects should be graded and returned to the students within one week of the due date.
  • All final grades must be recorded in RenWeb within one week following the end of the term.
  • Teachers may be allowed to utilize a grader. The hours that any one teacher may use a grader will be determined and approved by the administrative staff of Fideles Christian School.  It is required that the teacher still review the graded work whether the teacher graded the work or not.
  • The teacher is responsible for determining if the students are grasping the concepts and must review homework to make this assessment so that the classroom teaching may be appropriately modified if necessary.

If any student shows deficiencies in any area, such as an average below 75%, two or more failing test or quiz grades, or an ongoing failure to turn in assignments (either on time orat all), the parents should be contacted immediately to discuss what can be done to correct the situation. If the situation does not improve after the first contact with the parent, the teacher will refer the family to the Parent Success Coach for intervention.

Late Work—Fideles Christian School, desiring to promote both godly character and high academic standards, maintains the following policies concerning student assignments turned in late. These policies are designed to promote self-discipline, diligence, and self-control in the lives of the students.

All work should be completed at home on the day it is assigned and is due the next school day, unless a later due date is communicated by the teacher in FACTS SIS. If work is not turned in on the due date, an “M” will be entered in the gradebook for “missing.”  The “M” will calculate as a zero until it is replaced with a grade. The “M” is entered so students and parents can see that an assignment has not been turned in.

LATE WORK PENALTIES:

  • 1 class day late: 7th & 8th -10% / High School -15 %
  • 2 class days late: 7th & 8th -20% / High School -30 %
  • 3 class days late: zero for the assignment

Every teacher must enforce late work penalties in order to maintain a consistent educational environment for the students.

Late Work Due to Illness—If students miss class due to illness, or are unable to complete at-home work due to illness, missing work and tests will be due on the 2nd school day after returning to school.  If students miss two or more days due to illness, missing work and tests must be made up as soon as possible. In this case, the student must coordinate with the teacher to develop a reasonable schedule for work completion. It is the student’s responsibility to arrange makeup tests. Work may not be made up after the grading period ends.

Pre-Arranged Absences—Students are allowed a maximum of two weeks of at-school days in a school year to be used for pre-arranged absences.

  • All pre-arranged absences must be planned in advance.
  • A pre-arranged absence form is electronic and found in the app under resources and must be submitted in advance.
  • Upper school teachers will be informed of approved, pre-arranged absences.
  • All missed work must be turned in and missed tests, and quizzes must be scheduled for make-up with the teacher on the day student returns to class, unless otherwise agreed upon with the teacher prior to the absence.
  • Work submitted after this time, or tests and quizzed student does not arrange to make-up will be subject to Fideles’ late work policy.
  • If the form is not completed prior to the absence it will be unexcused and will carry the consequence of a 20% grade reduction during any graded activity for the day(s) the student is absent.

Grading Work Completed at Home—All work completed on home days will be returned to school to be checked for completion and accuracy. In order to accurately gauge a student’s grade level progress, tests, quizzes, essays, etc., that are given in the classroom will be a larger percentage of a student’s average grade. (see gradebook training materials for guidance)

Tests must be given at Fideles and proctored by a Fideles staff member. Tests should never be sent home to be proctored by a parent without administrative approval under extreme circumstances.

Grading Consistency—At Departmental Meetings, teachers will collaborate and agree upon grading policies such that in each department teachers are grading work on a consistent and fair basis. This will assure that a grade has the same weight across classes within the same department. These policies will be recorded in meeting minutes and submitted to the principal for approval.

Grading Scale 7th – 12th Grades:

0-100 Scale

Letter Grade

Earned GPA

93-100

A

4.0

90-92

A-

3.67

87-89

B+

3.33

83-86

B

3.0

80-82

B-

2.67

77-79

C+

2.33

73-76

C

2.0

70-72

C-

1.67

0-69

F

0

Academic Probation— Students must have an average grade of all core subjects (math, English, foreign language, history, and science) above 75% at the end of a semester in order to remain in good academic standing. A student whose average grade is at or below a 75% at the end of a semester, or who has a failing grade in any subject at the end of a semester will be placed on academic probation for the following semester. A student will have one semester to recover from academic probation. If a student should have an average of 75% or less, or fails any class for two consecutive semesters he may be blocked from further enrollment in classes at FCS, or if allowed to return, will be required to retake any classes in which he earned a 72% or below.

Any class that a student fails must be successfully repeated before the student will be allowed to continue enrolling in the course sequence in which the student earned the failing grade. If he then successfully completes the course, the passing grade earned will absolve the failing grade. When a failing grade has been absolved in this manner, both attempts at taking the course will be noted on the transcript, but only the passing grade will affect the GPA.

Final Exams—Comprehensive final exams will be given at the end of the semester for each core, high school level subject.  Core subjects are math, science, history, language arts, and foreign languages. For ninth and tenth graders, core subjects’ final exams will count as 15% of their semester averages; for eleventh and twelfth graders, they will count as 20% of their semester averages. Non-core subjects must have a final semester test that may or may not be comprehensive.

Seniors may exempt any first semester final exam if they have an average grade of 95 or above in the class, except math or Physics finals. Math and Physics are procedural, and students need to review and solidify the information. Taking the final exam ensures the retention necessary to move forward with the class second semester. At the end of second semester, seniors will be exempt from all finals with an overall semester average of 93 or above. Only seniors will be exempt from final exams. 7th and 8th grade students will be given a comprehensive final exam in math and science at the end of each semester.

Academic Dishonesty

Academic Dishonesty—One of the goals of Fideles Christian School is to aid parents and other Christian ministries in making disciples of students. We also wish to provide our students with a high quality of academic education, which we understand in terms of real spiritual, intellectual, and emotional growth. Among other things, this demands that students and parents adhere to high standards of personal integrity and that we provide corrective disciplinary action when students fail to do so. Academic dishonesty in any form is both a serious breach of personal integrity and a serious hindrance to real student learning. Because of this, FCS has developed this policy, which is intended to curb and, when necessary, correct academic dishonesty in order to better help the institution minister to the needs of its students. Teachers are expected to enforce these policies. Written reporting is made to the Director of Student Affairs using the Student Discipline Referral process.

Defining Academic Dishonesty:

Academic dishonesty is broadly defined as any attempt on the part of a student or parent, whether realized or not, to falsely represent the student’s level of achievement or mastery in a given course or with regard to any element of that course.  This includes but is not limited to:

  1. Claiming or indicating in any form or fashion that the student has fulfilled any assignment or other academic responsibility, such as reading assigned texts or engaged in assigned study, when in fact he has not done so.
  2. Using any assistance, including but not limited to copying the work of other students, in taking quizzes, tests, or examinations without the direct and explicit authorization of the teacher.
  3. Using any resources, including solution manuals and teacher edition textbooks, other than those authorized by the teacher in writing papers, preparing reports, solving problems, studying for tests, or completing other course assignments.
  4. Obtaining quizzes, tests, examinations, or other academic materials or evaluation instruments created by or belonging to an instructor, other staff member, curriculum publisher, or the school, including past exams, tests, quizzes, or homework from another currently enrolled or former student, without the explicit authorization of the teacher.
  5. Engaging in plagiarism, (which includes but is not limited to “the knowing or negligent use by paraphrase or direct quotation of the published or unpublished work of another person without full and clear acknowledgement” and “the knowing or negligent unacknowledged use of materials prepared by another person or agency” which customarily sells or offers free of charge term papers or other academic materials),
  6. Altering a graded paper or project for the purpose of disputing the accuracy of the grade.
  7. Working with another student or students during any quiz, test, or examination, or while completing homework without the explicit authorization of the teacher.

    The following guidelines define FCS’s standard application of the general definition given above to (a) quizzes, tests and other examinations, (b) homework, and (c) major papers and projects.  Individual course instructors may grant exceptions to these guidelines, but must do so explicitly, as indicated by the relevant policy statements given below. Any academic assignments which, by their nature, are not addressed by these guidelines, will be governed by whatever guidelines are provided by the course instructor with regard to such an assignment.

    Quizzes, tests and other examinations: all quizzes, tests and other examinations, whether conducted in the classroom or in some other location, must be taken at a single sitting and without outside assistance of any sort, including but not limited to books, notes, other individuals, reference works and internet. Any exception to these guidelines must be given by the instructor in writing to all of the students in the class.

    Homework: homework should be done by the student alone and without  undue assistance, including information provided in teacher edition textbooks, unless such assistance is authorized, either orally or in writing by the teacher, or as outlined in the Parent Roles in Partnership on page 6 of this manual. The teacher may grant such authorization, at any time and for any duration to all of the students in the class or to selected students only, provided that the teacher feels it is in the best educational interests of the student(s) receiving such authorization.

    Major papers and projects: major papers and projects should reflect the work of the student or the members of a student group constituted by the instructor for the purpose of completing the paper or project in question without undue assistance, except as explicitly authorized by the teacher.

    Academic Dishonesty Enforcement

    Discovery and Determination of Academic Dishonesty:  Determination of academic dishonesty may be made by the teacher of the class in which it was determined to have been committed. Other school officials, including proctors or other substitutes, may alert the teacher to the possibility of academic dishonesty should they have credible evidence, including eye witness observations, which indicate that cheating, plagiarism, or other dishonesty has indeed taken place, he shall inform the affected student(s) of his finding and, in conjunction with the relevant school officials, shall impose the proper penalties as described below.

    Appeals Process: Should a student desire to appeal the determination of the teacher, he must request in writing a hearing with an administrator, who will arrange for a conference with the student, one or both parents (or guardians), and the teacher of the course. During this conference, all relevant evidence will be presented and examined. Following the conclusion of the conference the administrator will render a determination in the matter based on his assessment of the weight and credibility of whatever evidence is presented for review.

    Penalties: The primary intentions of the imposition of penalties against students found guilty of academic dishonesty are to (a) act as a deterrent against such conduct, (b) to enhance the integrity of grades awarded by FCS, and (c) to place pressure on an erring student in the hope of motivating him to abandon this destructive behavior. Offenses are cumulative through 7th and 8th grade, and again through high school.

    • First Offense: a first offense will result in (1) a written warning from the teacher to both the student and his parents, (2) a grade of zero for the assignment affected by the academic dishonesty, and (3) a written report sent to the campus administration.
    • Second Offense: a second offense will result in (1) a written warning from the principal to both the student and his parents, (2) a grade of zero for the assignment affected by the academic dishonesty, (3) a conference between the principal and the parents of the student, and (4) a writing assignment for the student, in which he investigates and reports on Biblical instruction regarding honesty and integrity.
    • Third Offense: a third offense will result in a one day suspension from school, in accordance with the guidelines generally applicable to such a suspension, (2) a grade of zero for the assignment affected by the academic dishonesty, (3) remove students from qualification for academic honors for the school year in which the third offense occurs, (4) removal of all participation privileges for clubs, athletics, worship team, news, and other school leadership positions for 18 weeks.
    • Fourth Offense: a fourth offense would be a repeat of third offense penalties and may result in expulsion from the school.

     

 

Classroom Management & Student Behavior

Classroom Management—Teachers are expected to manage student behavior in the classroom by establishing and enforcing rules and procedures in concordance with Fideles’ Discipline Policies (below) and Student Code of Conduct (page 22).

Student Behavior—We consider parents to be the primary disciplinarians of their students.  In order to assure that every family’s investment in time, energy, and money is protected and maximized, it is necessary to establish rules of discipline to maintain an orderly environment on campus and in classrooms. These rules will be enforced by a system of referrals and demerits issued at the discretion of the teachers and administration according to the following categories:

  • Disruptive behavior: any behavior that is distracting to the teacher, the student, or the class; any disrespectful behavior
  • Dangerous or injurious behavior: any behavior that is potentially dangerous or harmful to the student or other students (physical or emotional)
  • Immoral behavior: any behavior that is Biblically inappropriate (language or actions)
  • Destructive behavior: any behavior that is destructive to school property

Minor infractions will receive administrative referral (see below).  Minor infractions might include, but are not limited to, disruption of the classroom and showing disrespect to the teacher or other students. Parents will receive an immediate email notification of the referral. The school expects the parents to handle the discipline at this level. If a student’s behavior does not improve, a parent conference will be called.

Infractions of a chronic or more serious nature can receive the following consequences:  (these infractions might include, but are not limited to, dangerous, immoral or destructive behavior, and disrespect and/or disruption that is chronic in nature)

  • A conference between parents, student and administration to discuss the behavior to determine consequences
  • Suspension for a length of time depending on the seriousness of the offense

If a student persists in disruptive, disrespectful, dangerous, destructive, or immoral behavior after corrective steps have been taken, that student will be subject to expulsion.

Suspension restricts a student from attending or participating in any school activity during the duration for the suspension.  A student who has been suspended is not permitted to make up any work that has been assigned during the period of suspension.

Expulsion results in the immediate dismissal from all classes and activities and the expulsion must appear on the student’s permanent record. Students who have been expelled may not attend any school activities or visit the school campus at any time.

Administrative Referral—Teachers will use an administrative referral system in maintaining discipline in the classroom. Teachers will have referral slips in the classroom with two referral categories; 1) dress code violation and 2) behavior violation. The teacher will fill out the slip and put it in the Director of Student Affairs’ communication box or use the Student Discipline Referral Slip in the App, by the end of the school day.

If a student is disruptive to the point that he/she needs to be removed from the classroom, the teacher will send them to the office with a referral slip in hand or by using Immediate Removal from Classroom in the App under Staff Login. The teacher is advised to text the office that the student is coming. Students should NOT be sent into the hall for a time-out. They MUST be sent to the office when removed from the classroom.

The Director of Student Affairs will enter the behavior notice into FACTS SIS student record. If a student receives three administrative referrals, they will be given a detention and one demerit. A student may be given a detention and demerit prior to three referrals if the behavior warrants immediate consequences. This process will be supervised by the Director of Student Affairs. Detention will be scheduled at the same time every week for 30 minutes after school. Students will be given work to do and will be supervised by the Director of Student Affairs or appointed school staff member.

If a student has served three detentions, indicating chronic misbehavior, the administrative disciplinary team will meet with the parents for a possible suspension or expulsion.

 

Classroom Management & Technology

Classroom Technology—The school has a set of Chromebooks in both buildings for teachers to use in the classroom. To ensure Chromebooks are available, teachers should reserve them in advance with the principal. Students should RARELY use cell phones for classroom technology. Teachers may require students to bring a laptop from home to work on special projects.

When using Kahoot or other interactive apps in the classroom where students’ usernames are displayed on the classroom TV, students MUST use their OWN names and MAY NOT use a pseudonym. Teachers must enforce this policy to prevent students from creating names that may be disruptive and/or offensive.

Teachers MUST without exception enforce the school’s student technology policies. Students may not at ANY time have their cell phone on their person or out on their workspace without specific permission and supervision of a teacher for ACADEMIC purposes only. Teacher may not all students to use their cell phones for leisure or to fill extra time in the classroom.

Teachers MUST confiscate any cell phone that a student is using, or has on their person, or at their desk without permission. Confiscated cell phones are turned into the front office with a disciplinary referral slip or app form. See student Behavior/Phones and Devices in this handbook for specific information.

Classroom Communication

Classroom Communication—Clear and regular communication with parents is vital.  When parents (or students) email a teacher with a question or concern, teachers must reply within 2 hours of reading the email.  If necessary a teacher may say, “Thank you for your question. I need more time to give you a response. You will hear back from me tomorrow.”  Teachers are expected to check their emails periodically throughout the day on “at home” days in case students or parents have a question regarding an assignment. Teachers should clearly communicate to parents how to best contact them when not in school, as well as “home office hours” when the teacher will be available for more immediate contact.

Teachers must use FACTS SIS Communication for all correspondence with students and parents.  Teachers must make a written account of any communication with a parent (written or verbal) that rises above the normal assignment inquiry communication. This is to be recorded in FACTS SIS under Student; P/T Conference.

Teachers must have daily access to their Fideles email as that is the email parents and students will be using to contact them.

Communication beyond the Classroom—In order to have a consistent brand to our school communications, any communications to groups, other than classroom communications, must go through the school’s communication email. Send the email you need distributed to Communications@FidelesChristianSchool.com with the following information:

  • the audience
  • the content (worded to go out with all relevant information)
  • attachments, photos, or flyers (must be png or jpg)
  • include reply to information if a reply is needed
  • indicate if you need this to also be an announcement in the app and Family Portal

This includes school-wide emails, multi-class emails, extra-curricular activities emails, etc. If you aren’t sure, please ask.

Honor Rolls

Fideles recognizes academic achievement each year through the following honor rolls.

7th – 11th Grade Students: Honor Roll is based on grades at the end of first and second semester last school year.

 A/B Honor Roll for students who earned a 3.0 or above in every subject, each semester. That is a grade of 83 or above with at least one grade of 90 or above.

A Honor Roll for students who earned a 90 or above in every subject, each semester.

4.0 Honor Roll – students who earned a 93 or above in every subject, each semester.

7th – 11th grade students will receive their honor roll certificates in August of the following school year during a chapel period.
Seniors will receive their honor roll certificates at their graduation rehearsal.
Certificates are awarded at this time to allow for all grades to be entered and calculated so that students are fairly awarded what they have earned.

Student Behavior & Discipline Policies

Hidden Toggle
Student Code of Conduct

Honor Code

As students of Fideles Christian School, we agree to do what is right, to speak the truth, and to strive for integrity and Christ-like behavior in all that we do. Therefore, we will not be involved in lying, cheating, stealing, disruptive behavior or illegal activity on or off campus. Violations of the honor system in matters pertaining to any facet of school life can result in consequences that lead toward expulsion.

Student Code of Conduct

Upon enrollment each family must agree to this code of conduct.

  • Students should show respect to authority. This includes using an appropriate title (Mr., Mrs., Miss, Coach, etc.) when addressing an adult.
  • Students should treat each other with respect, kindness, purity, and compassion just as God commands us in Matthew 7:12, “So in everything, do to others what you would have them to do you.”
  • Plagiarism is “the practice of taking someone else’s work or ideas and presenting them as one’s own.” All student work must be original or sources must be cited.
  • Students must keep to the uniform code on campus and appropriate dress code at school sponsored events when directed.
  • Students should arrive on time to every class.
  • Students are expected to keep the facility and grounds clean and orderly.
  • The students will control their behavior inside and outside, refraining from any activity that may cause harm to another.
  • Students may only drink water in the school building, except in the lunchroom where they may drink age appropriate beverages.
  • Use of profanity is strictly prohibited.
  • Public displays of affection such as hand holding, kissing, hugging, are not permitted on campus or at school sponsored events.
  • Students are not allowed to bring a cell phone or any electronic device to school unless the students and parents have signed a technology contract. Students 5th grade and younger may not bring any electronic device or phone to school.
  • Students may not bully or harass other students, or expose other students to immoral and inappropriate language or content through social media, technology, or during direct interaction.
  • Tobacco or vaping products, illegal drugs, alcohol, or weapons are not allowed on campus or at any school sponsored event.
  • FCS reserves the right to address any off campus conduct deemed to be significantly affecting on-campus relationships and/or learning environment.

 

Cell Phones and Devices

Technology Contract

All students 6th through 12th grades must have completed, read, and signed a technology contract during the enrollment process.  Whether or not your student will have technology at school, he/she does need to be aware of and understand the applicable school policies

Cell Phone

The phone must be silenced during school hours (8:20 am – 3:20 pm).

The phone will be kept in a closed compartment of a book bag or purse, or in a locker.

The phone may not be taken out or used during class or lunch except by specific permission and under the supervision of a teacher or member of the administration.

The parent agrees to check the student’s cell phone on a regular basis to make sure the student has not used the phone during school hours (including, but not limited to, phone conversations and text messaging). If the parent discovers that the cell phone has been used during school hours, he/she will remove from the student the privilege of bringing a cell phone onto school property.

If a school employee sees the phone out (even if it is not being used) or is told by any other party on the school grounds that the student is using the cell phone in any capacity without permission, the school employee will confiscate the device and notify the parents.  The parents must come to the school office to retrieve the cell phone; it will not be returned to the student under any circumstances.

Laptop, tablet, and other devices with internet access
(SMART WATCHES must be in airplane mode)

The device will be turned off and stored in a carrying case or book bag when not in use for a class, and will not be left sitting on the student’s desk.

The device may not be taken out and used while on school property when not specifically used in a classroom under the supervision and at the request of a teacher.

If a school employee sees the device or is told by any other party on the school grounds that the student is using the device in any unauthorized capacity, the school employee will confiscate the device and notify the parents. The parents must come to the school office to retrieve the device; it will not be returned to the student under any circumstances.

When a cell phone or other electronic device is confiscated, the student will receive a written sanction and will not be allowed to bring the device back to school for 30 calendar days (excluding holidays).  Upon the second offense the student will receive a demerit and will not be allowed to bring the device back to school for 100 calendar days (excluding holidays).  Upon the third offence the student will receive one-day suspension and will not be allowed to bring the device to school for six months (excluding breaks and holidays).

Teachers are expected to be fully aware of the technology contract and strictly enforce it by confiscating the technology when a student is seen with it out (using it or not is no concern) without adult permission or supervision. The technology is to be turned into the front off by the teacher and the office will communicate with all parties the appropriate consequences. THIS POLICY MUST BE STRICTLY ENFORCED BY EVERYONE IN ORDER TO CONTROL THE MISUSE OF PHONES AND OTHER ELECTRONICS AT SCHOOL.

Privacy Policy

Students and visitors may not video record or audio record any activity or person on campus without permission from the individual(s) being recorded and administration. Doing so is considered a serious breach of privacy and will be dealt with accordingly.

Student Dress Code

Students must wear uniforms that are on the approved uniform lists posted in FACTS Family Portal under Resource Documents or in the links below. Students who are in violation of the schools uniform code will receive an administrative referral (Student Behavior Policies). Parents are ultimately responsible for making sure the student has the appropriate uniform and wears it to school. From time to time there will be special dress days. Information regarding appropriate dress for those days will be communicated via email an on the App.

Fideles Christian School name and logo, and Fideles Rangers Athletics name and logo may not be reproduced or used on clothing of any type without getting approval and permission from the school.

Appearance Guidelines

  • Hair must be neatly cut so that it does not fall into the student’s eyes. No non-traditional haircuts, like Mohawks or non-traditional hair colors, i.e. blue, purple, etc.
  • Boys must be clean shaven. Juniors and Seniors only may have a close-cropped beard that is well-groomed.
  • Hats and hoods may not be worn inside the building.
  • No visible body piercing or tattoos, except girls’ ears.
  • Uniform bottoms must be the exact color and styles sold by approved uniform vendors.
  • Shorts, skorts, and skirts must be no shorter than 3 inches above the top of the knee cap.
  • Shirts must have logos embroidered by Fideles official uniform vendors.
  • Privacy shorts must be worn under skirts and jumpers.
  • Slacks and shorts must be loose fitting.

Appropriate Shoes

  • Students may wear dress, casual, or athletic shoes of any color or style that fully encloses the entire foot.
  • Girls only in 7th grade and older may wear flat or nearly flat sandals with strap across the heel.

Shoe No No’s

  • No Crocs
  • No Slides
  • No Birkenstock style sandals
  • No socks and sandals
  • No heels higher than 1-1/2″

Outer Wear

  • Fideles branded (purchased from Fideles athletic teams, clubs, official uniform vendors, and school spirit-wear store) sweatshirts, jackets, & cardigan sweaters are the only items that can be worn in the classroom over the uniform.  Any weather appropriate coats may be worn outdoors during recess/lunch.

Spirit Wear & Special Dress Days

Spirit wear is any Fideles branded (purchased from Fideles athletic teams, clubs, official uniform vendors, and school spirit-wear store) t-shirt, sweatshirt, jacket, that is associated with Rangers Athletics, Fideles clubs, Fideles events, and Fideles sponsored trips. There are several different occasions that allow students to wear spirit wear to school.

Athletes may wear their Ranger’s team jersey (or other team shirt if designated by the coach) to school on a day they have a competition or the day before a competition on a non-school day.
Students may wear any spirit wear shirt as defined above on any pre-announced “Spirit Day,”  usually once a month.
Students may wear that year’s themed, spirit shirt on Fridays. This shirt is sold annually at the beginning of the school year to raise funds for student activities.

Special Dress Days will be announced in advance by teachers and administration. They include, but may not be limited to:

  • Homecoming spirit week
  • Spirit days surrounding a holiday
  • Class presentation days
  • Read across America, Dr. Seuss week

On special dress days students are expected to participate in the theme of the day, or wear a uniform.

Child Protection Policies

Hidden Toggle
Child Protection Policy: Purpose, Scope, Definitions

GENERAL PURPOSE STATEMENT

Fideles Christian School, hereafter referred to as Fideles or FCS, seeks to provide a safe and secure environment for the students of our school. By implementing these policies and practices, our goal is to protect the students of Fideles from incidents of misconduct or inappropriate behavior while also protecting our staff and volunteers from false accusations.

 

SCOPE  The Policy & Procedures apply to:

All service organizations or subsidiary bodies authorized by or under the control of FCS including those undertaken at FCS premises or undertaken away from those premises.

All Employees, Volunteers, Parents and Students within FCS or engaged by FCS.

 

AUTHORITY

These policies and procedures were adopted for use by Fideles on 16 December, 2016. Fideles is committed to implementing the Child Protection Policy & Procedures and training our Employees, Parents, Students and Volunteers in its content and application.

 

DEFINITIONS

Abuse is any action (or lack of action) that endangers or harms a child’s physical, psychological or emotional health and development. Child abuse occurs in different ways and includes the following:

Physical abuse is any physical injury to a child that is not accidental, such as beating, shaking, burns, and biting.

Emotional abuse is the chronic attitude or behavior of one person which is directed at another person, or, the creation of an emotional environment which erodes a child’s development, self-esteem and social confidence over time. Behaviors may include: devaluing, ignoring, rejecting, corrupting, isolating, terrorizing or chronic and extreme domestic violence in the child’s presence.

Sexual abuse is any sexual act or threat to perform such upon another person. It occurs when a person uses their power and authority to take advantage of another’s trust to involve them in sexual activity. It does not necessarily involve genital contact but is any act which erodes the sexual boundary between two persons. It may appear consensual but the validity of consent is negated by the power differential.

Neglect is depriving a child of their essential needs, such as adequate food, water, shelter, and medical care.

Child means all persons under the age of eighteen (18) years.

Employee means administrators, teachers, substitute teachers, staff, coaches and parent volunteers who come in regular contact with our students.

Volunteer means any unpaid person over the age of 16 who is invited by the Principal or a staff or board member to assist in the school.

 

 

Screening, Hiring & Training of Employees

SELECTION OF EMPLOYEES

All employees as defined above will be screened. This screening includes the following:

Written application
All persons seeking to be an employee at Fideles must complete and sign a written application in a form to be supplied by Fideles. The application will request basic information from the applicant and will inquire into previous experience with children, church affiliation, reference and employment information, as well as disclosure of any previous criminal convictions.

Personal Interview
Upon completion of the application, an interview will be scheduled with the applicant to discuss his/her suitability for the position.

Reference Checks
Before an applicant is permitted to work with students, at least two of the applicants’ references will be checked.  Preferably, these references should be of an institutional nature as opposed to personal or family references, preferably from organizations where the applicant has worked with children in the past. If they are not available, then personal or family references are acceptable.  Documentation of the reference checks will be maintained in confidence on file at the school office.

Criminal Background Check
A criminal background check is required for all employees (regardless of position) and for all volunteers who will be coming into regular contact with students.

Completing the background check form is the authorization Fideles needs to screen individuals.

What constitutes a disqualifying offense that will keep an individual from working with students will be determined by the executive director, dean of students, and academic director on a case-by-case basis in light of all the surrounding circumstances. Failure to disclose a criminal conviction on the application form may disqualify someone from serving in this position.

The background check authorization form with personal information will be shredded and the results will be maintained in confidence on file at the administrative office.

Safety/Child Protection Training
All employees will participate in online child protection training through MinistrySafe.com in addition to in-house training in CPR, first aid, AED use, security response, and fire safety annually or as recommended by training provider.

Specific Child Protection Procedures

SAFE ENVIRONMENT

Incidents of Abuse are unlikely to take place in front of another person and the presence of a witness can assist in clarifying questionable allegations.

For these reasons, the following policies are in affect:

Two Adult Rule

It is our goal that a minimum of two adult employees will be in attendance whenever possible with students. This rule is designed for the safety of adults as well as minors, and is required across all service areas with few exceptions (see guidelines for these cases below).

Exceptions to the Two Adult Rule

The purpose of the two-adult rule is to ensure the actions of any one employee are known to at least one other employee.  Guidelines for exceptions to the two-adult rule follow this intent – that even when only one employee is present, the actions of that employee are known and accountable to others.  This is accomplished by the employee choosing to be in a known location, and if the employee is one-on-one with a student, by keeping doors open.

Classrooms

In cases when only one employee is in a classroom with students, there must always be multiple students in the room with the employee or the door will be left open. Administrators will be in the hallways regularly throughout the day and may look into classrooms unannounced in order to keep employees accountable.

Unplanned Situations with only One Adult

Occasionally, employees will find themselves alone with a student without another adult present due to unforeseen circumstances. The following procedures should be followed. Immediately inform supervisor–In these cases, the employee should immediately inform his/her supervisor or the supervisor’s designee (by cell phone or text message) about the situation, including information about where they are and who is present.  The adult employee should also immediately contact the supervisor or designee if a second adult employee arrives or when the students have been released to their parents.

Multiple students present– A employee should not be alone with one student (except in prearranged mentoring meetings described above).  If multiple students are present (e.g., 2 or more), this is acceptable.

Locked Door Policy

To prevent sudden intrusion by someone intent on causing harm, classroom doors should remain locked when classes are in session. Unless in lockdown, the door windows must be uncovered from five feet and above so another adult walking by can see into the room.

Discipline Policy

It is the policy of Fideles not to administer corporal punishment, even if parents have suggested or given permission for it. There should be no spanking, grabbing, hitting, or other physical discipline of students. Teachers should consult with the Director of Student Affairs if assistance is needed with disciplinary issues. The Director of Student Affairs may consult with the Head of School as needed.

Physical Contact Policy

Physical contact with students like hugs, pats on back, shoulders, or top of head, etc. can be misunderstood and misinterpreted, and may make a student feel uncomfortable with the adult. Therefore, it is the policy of Fideles to limit physical contact between adult employees or volunteers of the school and our students to fist bumps and high fives and be respectful of their personal space.

 

Reporting Procedures

REPORTING PROCEDURES

If there are reasonable grounds to suspect a child has been or is suffering abuse, the employee shall report their suspicions immediately to the Executive Director or Dean of Students for further action including reporting to authorities, as may be mandated by state law. The executive director and dean of students will also inform the Board of Directors as soon as possible, but definitely the same day.

Reasonable grounds can be assumed when:

  1. A child discloses that he or she has been abused, and/or
  2. Someone close to a child (sibling, relative, close friend) discloses on behalf of that child.
  3. The child’s social media activity indicates that abuse is taking place.

In the event that an incident of abuse or neglect is alleged to have occurred at the Fideles location or during our sponsored programs or activities, the following procedure shall be followed:

  • The Head of School will be notified immediately.
  • Board of Directors will be notified the same day.
  • The parent or guardian of the child will be notified.
  • The employee alleged to be the perpetrator of the abuse or misconduct will immediately be placed on leave from working with students pending an investigation.
  • An incident report will be completed by the dean of students and/or the head of school.
  • We will comply with the state’s requirements regarding mandatory reporting of abuse as the law then exists.
  • We will cooperate with any investigation of the incident by state or local authorities. In the event there is no investigation of the incident by state or local authorities, the Board of Directors at its discretion will form a team to investigate the circumstances of the incident. The team should act only in consultation with our insurance company and/or attorney.
  • Any person who is not found innocent of the alleged abuse or misconduct will be removed from their position with Fideles.
  • The Head of School with the Board of Trustees will appoint a spokesperson to the media concerning incidents of abuse or neglect, unless he or she is alleged to be involved.  Unless or until the Board of Trustees appoints a spokesperson, the Head of School is the spokesperson. All other employees should refrain from speaking to the media.
  • The Board of Trustees will determine if an attorney should be consulted, as well as determine if any other parties should be contacted.

Our desire throughout this process is to seek God-centered resolutions for all parties involved.  May the Lord give us wisdom as we seek to follow His will even in difficult circumstances.

 

 

Accidental Injuries to Children

In the event that a student is injured while under our care, the following steps should be followed:

  1. For minor injuries, scrapes, and bruises, the office will provide First Aid (Band-Aids, etc.) as appropriate and will notify the student’s parent or guardian of the injury by email or phone call.
  2. For injuries requiring medical treatment beyond simple First Aid, the parent and/or guardian will immediately be summoned. If warranted by circumstances, an ambulance will be called.
  3. Once the child has received appropriate medical attention, a medical report will be completed within FACT SIS. This is for all incidents involving an injury. Parents will be emailed a copy of the FACTS SIS medical report. 

 

Off Campus Trips and Activities

Off Campus Trips or Activities

The two-adult rule should be followed during all off campus activities.  One exception is when students are being transported in vehicles (see procedures under Driving Students). For unplanned situations where only one adult is present with students, the procedures outlined above under Unplanned Situations with Only One Adult should be followed.  For example, during off campus trips, sometimes a student or advisor needs to break off from the main group for some need.  If only one adult can break off the main group, he or she should take several students, not one, even if it’s only one student who has the need to leave the main group.

The nature of some off-campus activities may require students to be without direct adult supervision for some of the time.  In these cases, students should always be in at least pairs (never alone), they should be told how to reach a trip leader, and they should be given clear instructions about geographic and time boundaries.  

Distant Activities

For all activities occurring more than 50 miles away from the school campus, students may only participate if they have completed and turned in emergency forms for the event year, including parent signatures.  Trip leaders should always have a copy of these forms with them on off-campus trips.

Overnight Events

In addition to the requirements listed above for any off-campus school activity more than 50 miles away, parents/guardians must provide written permission for students to participate in specific overnight and/or off-campus trips. Whether an on-campus sleepover or an off-campus trip, male and female students must sleep in separate rooms with adult leaders of the same gender, or separate sides of one large room with adult leaders between the two sides. Trip leaders will make sure that students do not enter the sleeping quarters of students from the opposite gender. Students and adults are required to wear modest sleep attire.

Local Activities

All students participating in local off-campus activities must provide emergency contact information to the activity director (i.e. athletic director). Completed emergency forms are sufficient for students who have those on file for the current school year. 

 

Medical and Liability Forms

Families are required to fill out a Medical Form and Liability Waiver for each year they are enrolled in Fideles. These forms are in the Student Profile and FACTS SIS under Required Student Forms for the current school year.

 

Student Confidentiality Agreement

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Student Confidentiality Agreement

All employees must sign this form every year. Please read, sign, and submit.

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Employee Signed Agreement to Comply

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Agreement to Comply

All employees must sign this form every year. Please read, sign, and submit.

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