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Student Parent Handbook

2018-2019 STUDENT GUIDELINES

The Parent & Student Handbook provides detailed information for HCA parents and students. It is understood that the guidelines and policies from the Parent & Student Handbook will be followed by all students and supported by the parents. These Student Guidelines are an updated summary of some of those polices.

STUDENT INFORMATION

ABSENTEE PROCEDURES

All tardies and absences, excused or unexcused, count for attendance records and exemption status. Students without a note should expect disciplinary action.

When a student is:

  • Absent the whole day or part of a day: Check in with the main office upon arrival with your parent note or e-mail from parent.
  • Late to 1st period: Go directly to your class with your parent note and check in with your teacher.
  • Late to 2nd – 7th period: Go directly to your class with a note from your sending teacher or administrator.
  • Leaving school at anytime: Sign out at the main office. A note or call from a parent is required. Leaving without following these steps is considered skipping.

*Students later than 20 minutes will be considered absent. Any class missed for more than 20 minutes will be counted as an absence in that class.

*Students late to class will be considered tardy.  3 tardies = 1 absence, including first hour. Junior high students are allowed 5 excused tardies per nine-week grading period. HS students are allowed 3 excused tardies per six-week grading period. All others will be unexcused and result in a disciplinary action. Exceptions will be determined by administration.

*Anytime a student is absent without permission from a class, the student will be considered skipping.

CHAPEL / ASSEMBLY

Students are expected to follow all instructions for chapels or assemblies. Students should sit quietly in assigned areas and listen attentively. Disciplinary action will be taken for inappropriate behavior. Students are expected to be seated in chapel no later than 10 minutes after dismissal to chapel, and back to class 10 minutes after chapel is dismissed. No book bags, drinks, food, candy, etc. should be brought into the church auditorium. (Note: Do not leave valuables in book bags outside of auditorium.) All students should bring a Bible to chapel. Electronic copies of the Bible may be used on 8” tablets or larger or i-pads. Smart phones are not an acceptable device and may not be out in the auditorium.

COMMUNITY SERVICE

High school students will perform a minimum number of community service hours each year while enrolled at HCA:
9th grade – 20 hours; 10th grade – 25 hours; 11th grade – 25 hours; and 12th grade – 30 hours.

All hours are due approximately two weeks prior to the beginning of second semester finals. Students should not wait until the end of the year to begin community service hours.

COMPUTER / MEDIA GUIDELINES

Students are required to sign and comply with specifics of the Computer, Technology, and Social Media Policy. Students are to maintain all the standards of conduct and morality of HCA and Christian character in relationship to all media use and communication, on and off campus. This includes personal websites (but not limited to Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Orkut, Instagram, Vine, etc.), emails, texting, and viewing of materials. Students in violation of school standards (including the appearance of violation) with regard to computer use can expect disciplinary measures to be taken, including suspensions and expulsion if applicable.

DRESS CODE

All students are expected to be in HCA uniforms every school day unless a non-uniform day is scheduled. Please follow specific guidelines for non-uniform days (page 8).

Girls: Uniform shirts may be untucked, but must be buttoned to a modest level (1 button from the top). Uniform shirts are to be worn under sweatshirts, jackets, sweaters, etc.. Girls may wear pants, shorts, or capri pants from the uniform store. Girls are not to wear flip-flops, house shoes, or slippers. Excessive height for heels is discouraged. Earrings are an acceptable body piercing. All body piercings are subject to HCA discretion. Girls who dye their hair must relegate the colors only to naturally-occurring colors (i.e., no pinks, greens, blues, etc.). Tattoos should not be obtained while enrolled at HCA.

For after-school activities, clothing must meet the requirements of the non-uniform guidelines below. No leggings, yoga pants, or any other tight fitting pants or shorts. Girls’ tops, shorts, and pants should meet modesty standards (no midriffs, halter tops, tube tops, spaghetti straps, or visible stomach). Girls’ shorts must extend beyond the wearer’s fingertips when the arms are at rest at the side. Infractions may result in detentions, suspensions, loss of future non-uniform days, and/or loss of participation in after-school activities. Please refer to the Non-Uniform Guidelines for further details and information.

Boys: Boys may wear khaki or black pants and shorts. Compression tights are not to be worn during school hours with the exception of PE classShirts may be untucked, but undershirts must not show below uniform shirt. Uniform shirts are to be worn under sweatshirts, jackets, sweaters, etc. Boys are not to wear open-toe shoes, house shoes, or slippers. Boy’s hair should be neatly cut. Hair may touch the collar and the eyebrows, and should be no longer than the mid-point of the ear. Boys may not wear hair pulled back in any way. All boys should be shaven each day, sideburns to the bottom of the ear. The administration reserves the right to determine whether or not a particular hair style is acceptable. Boys may not wear earrings during regular school hours. All other body piercings are subject to HCA discretion. Tattoos should not be obtained while enrolled at HCA.

Students may not wear printed logo or attire which can be seen under the uniform. Only royal/navy blue, black, gray or white t-shirts or tank tops may be worn under the uniform shirt. T-shirts must not show below the uniform shirt. Students must still button shirts to required levels even when wearing a t-shirt under the uniform shirt. Students are not allowed to carry non-uniform attire.

Zip-up sweatshirts are limited to plain, solid navy blue, royal blue, white, black or gray. There can be no writings, patterns, graphics or logos on any part of the sweatshirt. The ONLY pull-over “hoodies” that can be worn are the KNIGHTS issued sweatshirts and Highlands sports team sweatshirts. Senior sweatshirt from past years are not included. Hoods may not be on the head in the buildings and appropriate uniform should be worn underneath.

Students will have specific guidelines for each non-uniform day and field trip days.  Non-Uniform Guidelines apply to all school-related activities, including athletic events (home or away). p. 9

Cold Weather Dress Code: Students wearing additional clothing for cold weather should follow these guidelines:

  • No pajama or other pants may be worn under uniform, no blankets or the like
  • Hooded sweatshirts in solid navy blue, royal blue, white, black or gray.
  • Hoodie “KNIGHTS” sweatshirts (sold in Athletic Office)
  • School or athletic jacket from the Athletic Department
  • During extreme temperature conditions (600 ), students may wear blue, black, white, or gray non-uniform jackets. There can be NO offensive messages or pictures on the jackets.
  • GIRLS ONLY may wear solid white, black, navy, gray leggings or tights under shorts. Cold weather ONLY!

DRIVING GUIDELINES

All student drivers must be aware and agree to all driving regulations. All driving permit forms are due the first week of school, and after that students may not drive to school until the form has been turned in. All students will be expected to stay away from parking areas during school hours. Students are not allowed to touch other student’s vehicles. This includes papering or other pranks. Students may drive back to the gym area at 3:15 p.m.

GYMNASIUM GUIDELINES

  • Only sneakers may be worn on the gym floor. All others shoes are unacceptable.
  • Do not use the west doors of the gym as an entry or exit. This includes anytime during practices or games.
  • While practice is in progress, only players and coaches should be in the gym. (Exceptions would be for students going to or from the music room for a lesson or for students going to the science room for help class). If you need to use the locker room, please use the back doors.
  • No cleats in the gym at anytime. Please do not bring cleats in the gym as they usually have dirt on them.
  • Do not bring food or drink on the gym floor.

LOCKERS

  • HCA recommends that students keep lockers locked at all times. HCA is not responsible for missing items.
  • Do not give out your combination.
  • Do not open anyone else’s locker without his or her permission.
  • Do not switch lockers without permission from administration.
  • Do not take locks home.
  • Do not bring locks from home.
  • No questionable materials, pictures, or messages should be displayed in lockers. Magnets should be used for  displays inside (not tape or other adhesives).
  • Displays of any type of materials are not allowed on outside of lockers.
  • Lost locks will cost $10.

MISCELLANEOUS

  • There is to be no physical contact between students. This applies before, during, after school, and at all school activities. This includes inappropriate hugging, holding hands, and putting arms around students of the opposite sex.
  • Do not go to the office without permission/pass from a teacher. This includes illness. If you are ill, get permission from a teacher before going to the office.
  • The office is not an infirmary. No medicine will be issued without a phone call from the parent.
  • Do not use any telephones on campus without permission/pass. This applies to time between classes and at lunch.
  • When it rains, wait for the bus. Do not run in the rain. The main lobby, east side of Building 1, the main door of the gymnasium, and the canopy by the portables are designated waiting areas.
  • No food or drink is allowed in school hallways. Water bottles are limited to clear non-colored plastic bottles with screw-on, sealable tops.
  • Gum is not allowed at HCA from 8:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. (not at lunch or between classes) and never in the buildings at any time. A monetary fine of $10 will be issued and is due the following day.
  • Students are not allowed to move or touch another student’s book bag, gym bag, or other personal property.
  • Students are encouraged to keep all valuables in lockers or in their possession.
  • Students are asked to walk on walkways, not on the grass or roadways.
  • Students are not to be in the various buildings unless attending a class (i.e., the church, Fellowship Center, Building I, the portables, Elementary Building, etc.).

LUNCH

Students must remain in the cafeteria or designated areas (for a special event) during lunch. Students may be required to sit at assigned lunch tables. Book bags are to be kept with students during lunch and out of the way of others. Students must remain in a single-file line while waiting to be served. No cutting. Students throwing objects at lunch should expect to be disciplined (cleaning, detentions, and/or suspension). Students should not leave the lunch area until tables are cleaned and students have been dismissed by a teacher. Students desiring to eat at an alternate on-campus location must have permission from a teacher or administrator who will serve as their monitor.

PROHIBITED ARTICLES

Cigarettes, e-cigarettes, alcoholic beverages, illegal drugs (non-prescription to the user), knives, guns (of ANY kind), explosives (of ANY kind), as well as pictures and magazines or books not related to class work are not permitted on school property. Hats and bandannas are not to be worn, carried, or seen during school hours. Hats should not be worn in the buildings at any time. These articles will be confiscated, must be reclaimed by parents, and can be held until the end of the semester. All HCA students will be expected to follow HCA cell phone guidelines as written in this packet. Students who have electronic devices may use the device ONLY with the permission of the teacher when in any classroom.

RESIDENCE

It is the policy of HCA that students must reside with their parent/parents (or legal guardian) or a designated HCA approved adult in order to remain in the school. This remains true even if the student has reached the age of 18.

STAYING AFTER SCHOOL INSTRUCTIONS

Students should not remain on campus after school unless serving a detention, staying for help class, practices, games or school functions. The hallways will be locked at 3:15 p.m. Students remaining on school property after 3:15 p.m. can wait in the courtyard of the gym, the picnic tables by the football field, or appropriate areas for post-school events. The locker rooms are for athletes in season ONLY.

VISITORS

Visitors may not attend classes, lunch, or visit between classes without a visitor’s pass issued in the main school office through the approval of the administration. Request for visitors should be submitted prior to the visitation day. This policy includes HCA alumni or students who withdraw from the school.

 

DISCIPLINE GUIDELINES

WRITING ASSIGNMENTS

Writing assignments should be done completely and neatly, turned in at the specific time the teacher requests. Writing assignments are not to be done in class. If a writing assignment is not completed and turned into the teacher on time, a detention will be given in addition to the writing assignment.

DETENTIONS

Detentions must be served within three days. Friday counts as a day even though there is not a detention hall available. Detentions must be served by the end of the marking period. Secondary students must sign his/her detention slip even if there is a dispute, an appeal can be made to the administration if necessary. It is completely the responsibility of the student to communicate with the parent concerning detentions. Students must wear HCA uniforms during detention hall unless dressed for practice or a game. Students who have P.E. last period may wear P.E. attire. Students serving a detention will report with paper and pen to detention hall and will write for 45 minutes. No extra detentions may be served in the office or elsewhere without permission from Dr. Lawrence, Mr. Smith, Mrs. Ratzlaff, or Mr. Canning. Detention hall is from 3:15-4:00 p.m. on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday.

Students with 5 unserved detentions will be suspended from school and will receive 0% for homework, quizzes, and class work missed that day. If a student arrives at school and a detention suspension is necessary, the student will remain on campus and a suspension will take place the next school day. On the first offense, the student will be suspended and given credit for 5 detentions served. On the second and following times, the student will be suspended from school and will be required to serve the five detentions on the next five school days. No student will represent the school in extra-curricular activities the day of a suspension.

All detentions received in a grading period must be served prior to the beginning of a new grading period. Students with unserved detentions will serve an in-school suspension until all detention time has been served. Suspension guidelines will be applied during that time.

REFERRALS

Students receive referrals for serious infractions in class or for activities such as skipping class, fighting, cheating, not serving detentions, direct disobedience, inappropriate internet and phone activity, etc. Each referral per semester will result in escalating discipline action.

1st referral- assigned discipline

2nd referral- assigned discipline, placed on 1st level probation.

3rd referral- assigned discipline, placed on 2nd level probation, suspension

4th referral- Administrative review, multiple day suspension

5th referral- consideration of student withdrawal

SUSPENSION

Students may be suspended as disciplinary action for any unacceptable behavior. Students may expect automatic suspensions for excessive detentions, excessive referrals, fighting, cheating, and appearance of cheating, skipping classes, smoking, inappropriate internet and phone activity, use of the F word, willful disobedience, or open defiance of authority. Any student being suspended will be notified in person prior to the suspension of the reasons for suspension. When possible, parents will be given verbal notification as well as the reasons given in writing. Students will be counted as absent in the classes missed and should expect zeros in academic work (not tests) for those days. Suspensions will generally be off-campus. Suspended students will not be allowed to attend any day or evening school activities during the suspension period.

EXPULSION

Expulsion decisions are made by recommendation of the administration and/or support from the School Governance Board. A student may be dismissed if the parents will not cooperate with the school, or if the student’s conduct, attitude, or lack of effort makes it inadvisable for him/her to remain. A student may also be dismissed for excessive unexcused absences. Serious offenses such as smoking, use of alcohol, drug abuse, specific cases of immoral behavior, etc., subject a student to immediate expulsion. Students may be unable to attend school the following year based upon discipline problems, poor attitude, excessive detentions, teacher recommendations, or administrative decision.

PROBATION

Students may be placed on academic or disciplinary probation. Specific guidelines of the probation will be communicated to the individual student and parent.

DISHONESTY IN TESTING

It will be considered “dishonesty in testing” if cell phones are in use during a testing situation.
***These guidelines also apply to the appearance of “dishonesty in testing.”

1st Offense:0” on test, one day suspension, “O’s” in all classes, and placed on probation for remainder of school year

2nd Offense: “0” on test, two day suspension, “O’s” in all classes

3rd Offense: Specific administrative and school board action.

CLASSROOM PROCEDURES
Listed below is an abbreviated list of general classroom procedures. Students are expected to comply with individual classroom policies and procedures for all teachers and classes. Disciplinary action will be taken when these guidelines are not followed.

  1. Come to class prepared. It is your responsibility to have textbook(s), paper, pen, pencil, and all other necessary materials with you before class begins. Lost books will be paid for before another book is issued.
  2. Be on time. Be in your seat before the bell stops ringing. Running and diving for the seat is not acceptable. Do not leave your seat during class without permission.
  3. Any school communication (notes, writing assignments, detentions, etc.) sent home must be returned the following day.
  4. No food or gum is allowed in classrooms, hallways or school/church buildings. The only drink and drink container allowed in buildings and classrooms is a clear water bottle with a screw-on cap.
  5. No talking or communication during class without permission.
  6. No turning around in your seat, sleeping, putting head down, combing hair, or playing. Do not wear sunglasses, hats, or use make-up in class. Unauthorized materials will be held by the teacher until the end of the semester.
  7. Do not distract other students. Students are expected to pay attention and follow all instructions.
  8. Do not write on the desks, walls, whiteboards, bookshelves, etc.
  9. Do not touch or disturb any material on the teacher’s desk or on another student’s desk. Do not touch or play with any equipment in the classroom.
  10. Students are not to have offensive writings, drawings, or pictures on the covers of books, in textbooks, in lockers, etc.
  11. Students are not to write notes or accept notes from other students.
  12. Students are expected to keep up with homework assignments.
  13. Electronic devices may be used with teacher permission ONLY. The only devices that can be used in the classroom and chapel are the school issued laptops, 8” or larger tablets, or i-pads. Cell phones are NOT an acceptable device and must be placed in locker, backpack, or car.
  14. All cell phones are to be stored in backpack, locker, or car in the OFF mode.

 

NON-UNIFORM DRESS CODE GUIDELINES

GRADES 6-12

THESE GUIDELINES APPLY TO ALL NON-UNIFORM DAYS

AND ALL SCHOOL-SPONSORED GAMES AND ACTIVITIES.

Please follow these guidelines CAREFULLY for non-uniform days. These guidelines also apply to attending all athletic events, home and away, and all school-sponsored activities. Each non-uniform day may include one or more of the following elements so please watch notices for specifics (i.e., field trips and in-school days may differ).  Be aware that many of the popular, trendy styles in jeans, pants, tops, and dresses may not always be acceptable for non-uniform days.

GIRLS

DRESSES – modest, length is to the top of the knee in the front and to the bend of the knee in the back. No low-cut, tight fitting, Lycra, spandex, spaghetti strap, one shoulder or halter.

SKIRTS – non-clingy (no Lycra or Spandex), length is to be to the top of the knee in the front and to the bend of the knee in the back. This includes skirts with leggings worn underneath. Slits should be no higher than the top of the knee.

PANTS – slacks, jeans or Capri pants that are neat and modest (not tight or low cut). No low rise, low riding, or pants. No Lycra, Spandex, torn, or ripped.  No sweatpants, track pants, or pajama pants.

SHIRTS – neat, modest, and loose fitting.  No tank tops, tube tops, one strap, or spaghetti strap tops may be worn either alone or under another shirt.  No midriff, halter, low cut, tight fitting, Lycra, or Spandex. Length of shirts must be such that they will remain tucked in when arms are raised and during other normal activities.  The stomach, back, and sides must remain completely covered when walking, standing, sitting, and at all times. Sleeveless shirts must be at least four finger widths across the top of the shoulder. Tops must not be tight fitting, faded, have offensive language or pictures, or be distracting in any way.

SHOES – If a student must wear alternative shoes for medical purposes, they must bring a note and wear a proper shoe on the non-injured foot.  No flip-flops, house shoes, or slippers.

SHORTS – Non-uniform shorts are NOT allowed to be worn in school on non uniform days. When shorts are worn on field trips, to athletic events, practices, or any school-sponsored event, the length of the shorts must be loose fitting and to the bottom of the fingertips when arms are at rest at the sides. No compression shorts, cheerleading (Soffee), or low riding styles or leggings.

BOYS

PANTS – slacks or jeans that are not torn or ripped or hanging off the hips. Non-uniform shorts are NOT allowed to be worn in school on non-uniform days. NO sweatpants, track pants, pajama pants, or compression shorts or full length compression wear.

SHIRTS – must not be faded, torn, have offensive language or pictures, or be distracting in any way. For Picture Day, collared shirts are expected. 

SHOES – no sandals may be worn.  If a student must wear alternative shoes for medical purposes, they must bring a note and wear a proper shoe on the non-injured foot. No flip-flops, house shoes, sliders, or slippers.

 

CELL PHONE POLICY

HCA has found it necessary to focus more on this issue because of the level of distraction it has become. Playing games, needless communication with friends in the school and from other schools during school hours, issues of dishonesty in testing, and inappropriate, even pornographic photos, are adding to the lack of focus on the educative agenda. We ask the parents to join us in the pursuit of academic excellence by discussing these guidelines with your children and supporting the school when consequential measures are taken.

We are asking parents who need to communicate with their children during school hours to call the main office. The office staff will get the message to the individual student. The student can either use the office phone or gain permission to use his or her cellular phone.

The following school guidelines are in effect between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m.:

NO cell phone usage is allowed. Phones must be stored in your locked locker, back pack, or car turned off. If it seen it can be taken. This includes in between classes, break time, and walking in between buildings.

A student may not have a phone out to place or answer a call, place or answer a text message, take pictures or send pictures, or use internet capabilities without the expressed permission of a teacher or administrator. Cell phones that are seen or heard in any way will be taken.

First offense: Cell phone (including sym card) will be taken until the end of the day. The phone may be picked up in the main office. This is considered a WARNING.

Second offense: Cell phone (including sym card) will be taken and held until a parent picks it up in the main office following a meeting with administration.

Third offense: Cell phone (including sym card) will be taken and held until a parent picks it up in the office following a meeting with administration. The consequence will be one-day suspension.

Fourth offense: Cell phone (including sym card) will be taken and held until a parent picks it up in the office following a meeting with administration. The consequence could be multiple day suspension, loss of phone privilege, and/or possible dismissal. Any situation after this would result in dismissal.

*** These guidelines also apply to summer school during the hours of 8:00 a.m. to 12:00 noon – Monday through Friday.   There can be no exceptions to this policy.

 

BULLYING POLICY

HCA seeks to provide the best educational setting for all its students and promotes an environment where students are able to learn, free from harassment and bullying of any kind. All students are expected to maintain Christian standards in courtesy, kindness, and in the treatment of staff and fellow students (Colossians 3:12).

What is Bullying?

Bullying is identified as any behavior, verbal or non-verbal, that is intended to cause physical, emotional, psychological or social harm. Bullying may be direct (face to face) or indirect. Bullying behaviors that are not addressed generally escalate into more aggressive behaviors over time. These are learned behaviors that can best be addressed by teachers who demonstrate and teach pro-social behaviors.

Bullying Behaviors

The following is a list of behaviors that demonstrate bullying. A student who demonstrates a bullying behavior may not be a bully. It is the goal of HCA to reduce bullying by addressing these types of behaviors as they occur.

Physical Behavior

  1. This is intentionally endangering the welfare of others. Such behaviors are not limited to but include the following: hitting, shoving, kicking, spitting on, punching, poking, pushing, blocking, and tripping.
  2. Other examples of physical bullying include: unwanted touching, rude gestures, taking or damaging another’s property, extortion of money or other items, and making someone do something they otherwise would not do.

Verbal Behavior

Verbal bullying includes but is not limited to the following: name calling, teasing, bossing, threatening, making fun of another’s appearance, physical characteristics, or cultural background making fun of another’s actions.

Indirect Behavior

Indirect bullying includes but is not limited to the following: exclusion from activities or social groups, spreading rumors, circulating inappropriate notes or drawings, using other people to threaten, intimidate, or humiliate another, encouraging others to violate the anti-bullying policy.

Cyber Bullying

In as much as technological advances have provided opportunities for students to communicate electronically, the following behaviors will be considered bullying: sending of inappropriate or threatening emails or text messages, creating or posting inappropriate or threatening information or pictures on websites (i.e. Facebook, MySpace, Instagram, Snapchat, etc.).

Reporting Bullying

It is the responsibility of all faculty and staff members to report all occurrences of bullying behaviors as outlined in this policy. Parents and students who have knowledge of such behaviors are encouraged to report this information and may do so without fear of consequences. Additionally, students who feel that they have been or are becoming the victims of bullying behaviors should notify the school counselor, teacher, or administration. Those parents or students who report such behaviors will not be the target of retaliation or reprisal in any way. Any individual who withholds information regarding bullying behavior or provides inaccurate or false information will be subject to disciplinary action including possible removal from school.

Prevention and Education Procedures
Written Notices

Notices of what constitutes bullying or bullying behavior, that bullying is prohibited, and the consequences of engaging in bullying or bullying behaviors will be posted throughout all buildings on campus.

A copy of the bullying policy will be posted on the school website (highlandschristian.org) and can be made available to any interested party if requested.

Employees, students, parents, and others are encouraged to take advantage of any opportunities to participate in programs or activities which promote the knowledge and skills needed to prevent and/or respond to bullying or bullying behaviors.

Reponses to Bullying or Bullying Behaviors
HCA recognizes that not all bullying behaviors should be considered bullying or willful violation of this policy. However, reported or observed bullying behaviors will be addressed according the procedures outlined below.

Each bullying offense will be referred to school administrators for disciplinary response. Each offense will require a parent’s signature on a discipline incidence form.

1st Offense – Meet with administrator, punitive actions determined

2nd Offense – Assigned 1 day detention

3rd Offense – Assigned 2 day detention

4th Offense – Assigned minimum of 1 day in-school suspension

5th Offense – Assigned minimum of 2 days out-of-school suspension

6th Offense – Student may be recommended for dismissal

Note: The administration of Highlands Christian Academy reserves the right to treat any single act as severe enough to warrant any of the discipline measures including dismissal from school.

Consequences will only take effect after an incident has been thoroughly investigated and can be corroborated by multiple sources or eye witnesses.

 

COMPUTER, TECHNOLOGY, AND SOCIAL MEDIA POLICY 

HCA encourages students to utilize every opportunity of advancing their education in the world of technology while at the same time being purposeful to honor the Lord in every aspect of their lives. Therefore, each student bears the responsibility of self-government in accordance with biblical standards when using the computer. The use of electronic devises is a privilege, not a right, and the student who uses the computer inappropriately will incur consequences.

HCA believes use of technology in the home is to be governed by the parents. While students are in the charge of the school, however, HCA reserves the right to govern all technology used on school property or at school functions under the mandate of CIPA, the Children’s Internet Protection Act. To this end, HCA will monitor all devises on school premises through a variety of means including but not limited to: filtration software, control agents, firewalls, and random screening. Although HCA will be vigilant in the monitoring process, the ultimate responsibility remains with student accountability and parental oversight.

Access & Conduct Guidelines

Many things can be found on the internet do not adhere to our Christian standards or beliefs. HCA subscribes to a content-filtering service which blocks content we feel would be detrimental to our beliefs as Christians and/or harmful to students. Despite our steps to protect students from harmful content and our best efforts to control access, certain items may still circumvent our filters.

Authority and Consequences

HCA reserves full authority over its network, grounds, and events. HCA reserves the right to employ any device used within an HCA authoritative zone regardless of ownership. The consequence of any action taken by a student which is in violation of the Acceptable Use Policy relieves HCA from any culpability as an entity. The full responsibility for the misuse of technology rests with the individual student. Consequence to non-adherence of the AUP will be determined by the school administration.

“Netiquette,” Cyber-Bullying, and Privacy

HCA maintains the position that, while at school, students are to focus on using technology for academic purposes only. Students will be given an email address to be used in a proper manner for school use only.

HCA policy dictates that all student interactions with other students and staff must be in a manner pleasing to God and completely free of cyber-bullying, invasion of another’s privacy, illegal downloads, and sexting.

HCA Guidelines Regarding Use of the Internet, General Network Conduct, and Information/Photos Transmitted Via Cell Phones

  1. Accessing pornographic materials is strictly prohibited. This includes items that may be deemed as “soft porn.”
  2. Students are not to engage in any online conversation or cell phone transmission that is discriminatory or harassing, derogatory to any individual or group, obscene, sexually explicit, defamatory, or threatening. This includes conversations via chat programs, forums, journals, blogs, message boards, email, or any other form of digital media.
  3. Students should refrain from violating laws governing copyrighted material. This includes plagiarism of copyrighted books or media. Downloading, viewing, or sharing copyrighted files of any type is also prohibited.
  4. Students are not to use a teacher’s workstation unless specific permission is given by the teacher.
  5. Vandalism and mischief that incapacitates, compromises, or destroys HCA resources is forbidden. This includes the uploading of computer viruses, illegal use of others’ user passwords, or attempting to gain access to secure areas of the network.

Stewardship of Equipment

HCA has invested a large amount of resources into providing adequate computer workstations and computer facilities. The following rules apply to the computer labs or any area where computers are made available for student use:

  1. Students must treat all equipment and facilities with exceptional care.
  2. Students may not bring food or drinks into the computer labs. There will be no exceptions to this policy.
  3. Students may not put their feet on the desks or computer equipment in any way.
  4. Students may not sit on the computer desks.
  5. Students are not to damage or tamper with any computer equipment or the computer desks in any way.

Sexting

In keeping with the school’s responsibility to provide a safe learning environment for all students, the administration has established the following policy regarding the issue of ‘sexting.’ Sexting is the act of sending, receiving, or forwarding sexually explicit or suggestive messages, photos, or images via cell phone, computer, or other digital device. Students engaged in such activities are subject to state laws and school discipline. The school considers sending, sharing, possessing, or even viewing pictures, text messages, or e-mails that contain a sexual message or image a violation of this policy, a violation that will result in school discipline, up to and including expulsion, and in the notification of local law enforcement. According to Florida Statute 847.0141, students are required to immediately report any such activities to a parent, teacher or school administrator, or an officer of the law.

Test Banks

Student use of test banks, whether teacher test banks or otherwise, directly associated with the curriculum used in a class is prohibited unless directly approved by the teacher of that class or administration.

All computer and internet device activity by HCA students should adhere to all standards of morality and behavior of HCA.

 

STUDENT AGREEMENT OF COOPERATION

Students are expected to abide by the rules, regulations, and standards of conduct throughout their enrollment whether at school, or elsewhere. Students found to be out of harmony with the Academy’s ideals of work and life may be invited to withdraw whenever the administration determines that it is necessary.

As a student of Highlands Christian Academy, I will refrain from swearing, smoking/use of tobacco, smoking e-cigarettes, indecent language, gambling, use of alcohol, disorderly and boisterous behavior, usage and/or possession of narcotics and other dangerous drugs (including marijuana). HCA drug policies include the right to search lockers, student vehicles, and other student property. The school will reserve the right to administer or require drug testing of any student, on a random or specific basis. Refusal to submit to testing can result in dismissal. As a student, I should not give or attend parties or get-togethers in which any of the above mentioned activities take place or are made available. (Inappropriate concerts, night clubs, raves, and the like are included in the definition or gatherings where unwholesome activities prevail and are, therefore, off limits for students.) Furthermore, as a student, I am required to maintain Christian standards in courtesy, kindness, morality, sexual behavior as defined by the Bible and the standards of Grace Baptist Church, and honesty. I understand these standards apply to my computer activities including personal websites. I will conduct myself in such a manner that would be above reproach in all areas of my life. I will dress modestly and appropriately for all HCA functions, adhering to the HCA dress code.

I understand the “disciplined life” requires regular and consistent effort in the academics; therefore, I will accept the pressure applied to bring improvement in my studies.

I agree to abide by the standards of conduct and other regulations expected of each student attending the school, and must not give the impression to students, parents, or faculty that I am not in harmony with the goals, aims, and standards of Highlands Christian Academy.

Students who cannot agree with these policies and guidelines should not attend the school. Parents who cannot agree to support these policies and guidelines should not enroll their child in the school.

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