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Handbook


MISSION STATEMENT

East Middle School strives to educate all students by providing a challenging curriculum so that students can attain the skills necessary to become lifelong learners and responsible, productive citizens.


10 ESSENTIAL RULES FOR EMS STUDENTS


  1. I will always be responsible, respectful, and ready to learn.

  2. When responding to any adult, I will answer by saying “Yes Ma’am” or “No Sir”.  

  3. I will always show respect to others.  

  4. I will congratulate my classmates and celebrate their successes with them.  

  5. I will always be honest, no matter the circumstances.  

  6. When spoken to, I will always make eye contact with others.  

  7. I will be efficient, organized and on task when in class.  

  8. I will complete all assigned work each day.  

  9. I will exhibit politeness and kindness when the opportunity presents itself.

  10. If any student in this school is bothering me or others, I will let a teacher or administrator know immediately.  


Accidents -  Any student who suffers an injury at school should immediately notify a teacher.  If medical attention is needed, teachers will send the student to the office.  Parents will be contacted if the student needs medical attention beyond the school’s limits and an accident form will be completed and filed in the office.

Announcements - Daily announcements related to our school and student activities will be made each morning. Events and activities are announced on the school’s social media sites.

Arrival and Dismissal-EMS opens and supervision begins at 7:15 am each day.  Students should be dropped off at the front gymnasium set of doors each morning. Students who arrive before 7:50 a.m. are to report to designated areas (7th and 8th grade, gym and 6th grade, cafeteria) where they are seated by grade and supervised by the school staff. Breakfast is available in the cafeteria between 7:15 - 7:45 for students who wish to eat.  

School is dismissed at 3:00 p.m. each day. Sixth grade students are to be picked up at the gym side of the building from 3:00 to 3:15. Seventh and eighth graders are to be picked up in front of the school or at the library end of school. Seventh or eighth graders who ride with a sixth grader should go to the gym area for pickup.  All students must be picked up by 3:30.  Parents are encouraged to remain in the pickup line until the student is in the car and then proceed carefully.  We appreciate you staying off the grassy areas around the school.  Drivers should observe a 5 MPH speed limit while on school grounds.

Assignments/Make-up Work-All assigned work is important and students are expected to complete homework and class work as assigned by the teachers to the best of their ability. Students may be pulled from related arts classes, extracurricular activities, or field trips, etc. to complete  missing assignments.  When absent, students may see their individual teachers for assignments, check teacher websites, or have a friend bring assignments. Students must complete and submit all work within the time designated by the teacher and school.

Athletic Programs-Participation in athletics is a privilege that may be limited or withdrawn for disciplinary or other reasons by either the coach or administration.  Decisions on team membership, playing time, team rules, etc. are at the sole discretion of the coach of that sport.  Coaches may choose to use an expert panel to assist with player/cheerleader evaluation.  Students may not participate in athletics (games, practice, tryouts, etc.) if they are suspended from school (in-school or out-of-school).  Suspended students are not eligible to participate from the moment of suspension and until the first school day after the suspension is completed.  Students may not participate in athletic events unless they have attended at least one-half of the school day on the day of the event, not counting school-sponsored trips.  

  • To be eligible for school-sponsored teams, a student must have been promoted the previous year, meet all school and conference eligibility criteria, and not be under any school sanctions limiting participation.  To be able to continue participation in athletics, students must adhere to all rules and regulations of the team and school.

  • Eligible students may try out for school-sponsored football, cheerleading, basketball, and track.  Football and cheerleading are for 7th and 8th grade students only.  Basketball and track are for 6th, 7th and 8th grade students. Baseball, softball, tennis, soccer, wrestling, and golf are non-school sponsored club sports that may be available from year to year.  These sports adhere to school board policy, but are not funded or administered by the school board or EMS.

  • Each student must have a complete physical examination each year prior to trying out or participating as a member of any athletic team or cheerleader squad.  An official TSSAA physical form completed by a physician after May 1 of year of participation and a “Consent for Athletic Participation and Medical Care” form (completed by a parent/guardian) must be on file with coach prior to student participation in a sport.  Cost of the examination shall be borne by the parent or guardian of the student.  The parent/guardian is required to maintain personal insurance and be willing to accept all financial responsibilities related to participation and travel.

  • Cheerleader tryouts are held in the spring for football and basketball.  The football squad is composed of students from East Middle School and West Middle School.  Like all other school-sponsored sports, cheerleaders are expected to adhere to all school and athletics rules, meet all deadlines and requirements of the cheerleader coach, and meet all EMS and conference eligibility guidelines.

Athletics Transportation-Student membership/participation on a school-sponsored team shall constitute parental/guardian permission for approved team-related travel to and from contests.  For school-sponsored sports, students are expected to be transported to and from approved activities by school or chartered bus unless parent/guardian makes arrangements with the coach in charge ahead of time to transport his/her own child after a contest.

Attendance-Regular school attendance is important for successful academic progress. Students are expected to be on time and in attendance every day school's in session. In accordance with the state school attendance law, EMS is required to report all students who are absent for more than five days (without an adequate excuse) to the superintendent's office. Only five absences for illness per school year will be excused based on a telephone call or a note from a parent or guardian. Student absences should be reported by calling 454-2632.  Additional absences due to illness will require a written physician's statement within three days of the occurrence in order for the student to be excused. Students absent for more than five days for one illness should provide the school with a Physician's Certificate of Disability, which lists specific dates of disability.  For the purpose of gaining “Perfect Attendance” status, students must be present every minute of every day that school is in session unless on a school-sponsored field trip.

Excused absences recognized by the TCS Board of Education include:

• Personal illness;

• Illness of immediate family member;

• Death in the family;

• Extreme weather conditions;

• Religious observances;

• Medical or dental appointments with a physician's statement;

• Circumstances, which in the judgment of the principal create emergencies over which the student has no control

Awards-Award ceremonies will be held to honor students in each grade who have excelled in different areas of the curriculum at the end of each year. Students will be recognized for a variety of accomplishments including academic achievement, perfect attendance, leadership, and school service.

Backpacks-Backpacks are to be stored in lockers during the school day. Backpacks with wheels are not allowed in EMS.

Before and After School Programming (21st Century Grant)-EMS offers numerous before and after school options for students as grant funding permits.  All rules and procedures in this handbook apply to programming offered under the grant.  If a schedule changes or a class is cancelled, all efforts will be made to provide 24 hour advance notice.  Students will be directed to call parents in the event this is not possible.  A daily snack will be provided for your child at the beginning of each session.  The daily schedule is provided on the website and at the EMS office.  The participating students will be dismissed at 4:15 and must be picked up promptly.  EMS staff will supervise dismissal until 4:30.  The EMS school office will be staffed until 4:15 Monday through Friday in the event you need to reach your child after normal 8 to 3 school hours.

Cafeteria-To encourage good nutrition, a well-balanced meal is offered at a reasonable price.


6th-8th

Staff

Child Visitor

Adult

Breakfast

$1.25

$1.75

$1.50

$1.75

Lunch

$2.25

$3.00

$2.75

$3.00

*Please see the website for A La Carte Prices

Free or reduced lunches are available to those who qualify. Students and staff are allowed to charge for lunch or breakfast in an emergency. Students who owe five (5) lunch charges or two (2) breakfast charges may not charge an additional meal. Only basic meals may be charged. If special circumstances or hardships arise, please contact the office. Students may pay daily or in advance to their account. Parents are encouraged to pay by check. Students are not allowed to have commercial food from outside sources.If you have any questions or problems, please contact the cafeteria manager at 454-2634 or Angela DeLucenay, School Nutrition Director, at 454-2600.

Cameras/Camera Phones-Cameras, camera phones, and other electronic recording devices are prohibited in locker rooms at all times.Cameras, camera phones, and other electronic devices owned or operated by individuals may not be used to photograph, video, or record any student or staff without permission from the individual(s) being photographed, videoed, or recorded.  School security cameras are not included in this restriction.Any student who violates the restrictions of this policy may have the device confiscated and may be subject to disciplinary action at the discretion of the principal.  Any student who disseminates in any manner an unauthorized or misrepresented photograph, video, or recording for the purpose of embarrassing, demeaning, or discrediting the reputation of any student or staff, or that results in the embarrassment, demeaning, or discrediting of any student or staff, or results in any action or activity disruptive to the educational process shall be subject to disciplinary action up to and including any applicable disciplinary measures deemed appropriate.

Cancellation of School-During inclement weather, school closing announcements are made on television channels 2, 4, 5, and local channel 6. Listen for Tullahoma City Schools, not Coffee County Schools. Students and parents on the EMS School-Messenger list will be called on phones as well.

Cheating-Cheating is a serious compromise of a student's integrity and is unacceptable.  If cheating is discovered, a zero will be given on the assignment. A second offense of cheating will result in a zero plus disciplinary action up to suspension.

Cell Phones/ Electronic Devices-All electronic devices should be powered off and put away before entering classrooms or assemblies.  Locking devices in one’s locker is highly recommended, as these items are high theft items and should never be left unattended. Cellular phones, smart phones and other electronic communication devices are not to be used during classtime unless authorized by a teacher in his/her classroom, at which time the device is to be used for educational purposes only. Valuable articles or items that are not directly related to the school or its curriculum should not be brought to school. This includes items such as cameras, game boys, toys, lasers, iPods, MP3 players and the like.  Such items will be confiscated and turned in to the office.  If a student persists in bringing non-school items to school, the items will be confiscated under the same rules that apply to cell phones. Students should not borrow items from other students.   Cell phones and electronic devices that are powered on, seen, or heard otherwise during class time or assemblies by staff members will be confiscated. In the event that an electronic device is confiscated, the device will be held for the following length of time:

1st offense: Returned to parent on same day

2nd and all other offenses: Held for one school week before returned to parent


Students caught using electronic communication devices during a test could receive a zero for the test in addition to having the device confiscated.

Check-out-Parents must sign a student out in the front office before a student can leave school. If anyone other than the legal parent or guardian is to pick up a student, a means of verifying approval by the parent/guardian must be provided. Students are not allowed to check out for lunch.

Chromebooks -All Computer Use, BYOD and Chromebook Policies will be accessible as a bookmark on the Chromebook, on our website at www.tcsedu.net, Technology, Documents and/or may be requested in print.  

Clubs/Extracurricular Activities-East Middle School strives to involve all students in every facet of school life. Students can pursue various interests such as math contests, creative writing and poetry competitions, pep rallies, drama, band, chorus, dance, and interscholastic sports activities. FCA (Fellowship of Christian Athletes), Student Council, National Junior Honor Society and a wide array of clubs are also available.  (Complete list will be available Term 1)

Conferences-Parent/Teacher conferences are scheduled for four evenings in the school calendar. Teachers and parents may request additional conferences.  Please call the office at 454-2632 to schedule a conference. Most conferences are scheduled during a teacher's planning period.  If a problem arises with a student in more than one class, a group conference may be scheduled. Email and phone calls are also encouraged as effective means of communications.

Counseling-The EMS counselor is available to all students. Problems concerning both a student’s school and personal life often appear overwhelming. In many situations these problems can be helped by talking with the school counselor. Students may request to see the school counselor by letting any staff member know that a need exists; however, students must have an appointment rather than waiting at the counselor's office.

Deliveries-No student deliveries of any kind (flowers, candy, balloons, etc.) will be accepted at EMS. Please do not bring food, party invitations, etc. to school.

Detention -Students are subject to assignment to detention hall at the teacher's discretion for multiple offenses. Detentions may be assigned with regular classroom teachers or office assigned personnel. Students who refuse to serve time in detention will be subject to possible suspension. A minimum of 24 hours will be given to students who are to serve detention beyond 3:15 PM..

Discipline-EMS administration and staff shall strive to create a school environment favorable to the development of self-discipline and self-direction. Acceptable behavior is essential for an effective school program. All students enjoy the rights of citizenship in the school, but they also must accept the responsibility for appropriate personal behavior. The behavior expected from students of East Middle School is a combination of courtesy and safety considerations. There are only a few special areas that require the application of very specific rules. The following types of conduct are never permissible.

  • Bullying: All students have the right to attend East Middle School without being threatened or intimidated by others. Persistent behaviors of bullying such as threats, name-calling, comments about a student's religious beliefs or ethnic background, or defamation of character by spreading rumors will not be tolerated. Students who feel threatened or "bullied" by other students should report it to a teacher and or administrator immediately.

  • Cyber Bullying:  Cyber bullying is prohibited in all forms.  Cyber bullying is defined as the use of information and communication technologies, such as email, cell phone text, or picture messages, instant messaging, defamatory personal websites, social networking sites, and online personal polling site to support deliberate, hostile behavior intended to frighten, intimidate, threaten, or harm others.

Cyber bullying (also known as online social cruelty, use of technology for intimidation, electronic bullying, etc.) can involve, among other things, sending mean, vulgar, or threatening messages or images; posting sensitive, private information, or images of or about another person; pretending to be someone else online in order to make that person look bad or discredit their reputation; and/or intimidating messages.  It should be noted that school officials will consider such actions to be school-related matters (in other words, the school may apply disciplinary consequences) should the actions interfere with anyone’s access to the educational process or with the safe and orderly operation of our school, regardless of where the cyber bullying originated.

  • Defiance: Students are expected to comply with instructions of staff members at all times. The safety and educational well-being of students is the top priority of the school. Disrespectful and defiant conduct will not be tolerated.

  • Fighting: Fighting is strictly forbidden in the school, on campus, or at school sponsored events. Most fights begin with mouthing, taunting, cursing, or put downs.  It then progresses to threats, pushing and shoving, and wrestling, as well as actual hitting. All of these steps are considered contributing factors to, and a part of, the fight. For that reason all parties involved in any of the steps of a fight may be disciplined. Each of the developing stages of a conflict presents the opportunity for a student to simply walk away or to notify an adult of the problem. To refuse to do so is a choice to continue the development of the fight. Having any part in a fight will result in severe consequences that may include suspension, expulsion, and/or referral to juvenile authorities.

  • Gambling: Gambling of any type is prohibited.

  • Misuse of Computers/Technology: Students are to use computers/technology only for educational purposes. Any improper use of computers/technology, including, but not limited to, visiting inappropriate websites, sending improper e-mail, downloading /deleting programs without the approval of school officials, damaging equipment, etc. will result in the loss of technology privileges for the student involved.

  • Profanity: The use of profanity is never acceptable by any student, staff member, parent, or visitor at East Middle School.

  • Smoking / Tobacco: Students are prohibited from the use or possession of tobacco in any form on school property or while participating in or attending any school-related activities. Any student who possesses tobacco products will be issued a citation to appear in juvenile court. Parents are liable for fines and court costs.

  • Electronic cigarettes:  The prohibition of smoking includes a prohibition of the use of electronic cigarettes, electronic pipes, and electronic nicotine delivery devices.

  • Vandalism: Students are to take pride in themselves and in our building and facilities. Willful destruction or defacing of school property or facilities will be dealt with severely.  Accidental damage should be reported to a teacher immediately so that damage is not misconstrued as vandalism.

Other Codes of Conduct are addressed in Tullahoma City Schools Policies later in this handbook.

Dress Code-The majority of our students need no advice on appearance because they use good common sense. Decency, good taste, and respect for self and the standards of the community are to be maintained in dress and grooming by all students. Any student attire that is considered contrary to good hygiene, disruptive in appearance, or detrimental to the educational environment or the public image of the school will not be permitted. Also, student attire should not be a hazard to the student’s safety or to the safety of others. The administration and teachers will determine the appropriateness of dress and decisions are final. Students not in compliance will be sent to the main office.
  • Shorts should be no shorter than mid-thigh.
  •  Skirts and dresses should be no shorter than the top of the knee.
  • Leggings, jeggings, and other compression/athletic-style pants may be worn so long as worn with an opaque top garment with a front and back length completely covering the buttocks area. (*Opaque – solid, not see-through)
  • Shirts must be opaque and cover the stomach and chest – and – have an over-the-shoulder area at least 2 inches wide. (roughly the width of a business card)
  • Any items worn underneath sheer or lace clothing must adhere to the dress code.
  • Holes in pants may not be above the knee. Holes or fray above the knee caused by normal wear must not reveal skin.
  • “Sagging” pants may not be worn. Pants must be belted and properly fit at the waist.
  • Students may not wear clothing that mentions drugs, tobacco, alcohol, has vulgar/obscene/profane captions, etc, or is related to a gang or gang colors.
  • Pajamas/pajama pants are not appropriate for regular school day attire.
  • Appropriate footwear must be worn at all times. No house shoes are allowed.
  • Sunglasses, hats, headscarves, and bandannas are not to be worn in school

Parents will be notified if students are inappropriately dressed. Students will be required to change into proper clothing and will not be allowed to attend class if in violation of the dress code. Students who violate the dress code may be subject to disciplinary measures. If a parent is unable to be contacted or unable to bring clothing in a timely manner that meets the dress code, the student will wait in the In School Suspension room until contact is made or clothing is delivered.


Emergency Information-Every student is required to have a completed student information card on file in the school office.

Evacuation Plan-Procedures for classroom evacuation are posted in each classroom. Fire and tornado drills are held periodically. Students are expected to walk quickly and silently to designated areas during drills.

Fees -Students are to pay a fee of $35.00 each to cover educational supplies at the beginning of the school year.  If needed, fees can be split and paid by semester.  Some students may be eligible for fee waivers.  Some classes, school activities, or field trips may charge an additional fee.

Field Trips-Field trips are scheduled throughout the year for educational opportunities. There is usually a bus fee and, at times, students must pay admission to certain events. Sack lunches may be purchased through the cafeteria. A required permission slip containing information about the trip will be sent home in advance. Students must return on the bus unless they ride home with their own parents, in which case teachers should be notified in writing in advance of the trip. Students who qualify for fee waivers will be exempt from the required cost of field trips. Students are expected to be on their best behavior at all times, and the school reserves the right to deny a student's field trip privileges if the student's behavior warrants such action. Students must meet the required criteria to be eligible to attend some field trips.  In rare instances, improper field trip behavior from the previous school term may impact a student's right to participate in a field trip during the following term.

Food -Bottled water brought from home in original bottle or purchased from school vending machine. Teachers will use their own discretion in allowing students to drink water during class. Food and drinks, other than water, are not permitted anywhere in the building except the cafeteria during lunch unless given explicit permission by a teacher or administrator.  Drinks brought to school with a sack lunch must be in a can, box, pouch, or other non-resealable container.  NO BOTTLED DRINKS OTHER THAN WATER ARE PERMITTED, EVEN WITH A LUNCH BROUGHT FROM HOME. Carbonated drinks, gum, and food from outside vendors are not allowed in school during the regular school day.

Grading Policy-East Middle School uses the grading scale adopted by the Tullahoma City School System as follows:

A 93-100 Excellent

B 85-92 Above average

C 75-84 Average

D 70-74 Below average

F 69 or < Unsatisfactory

Grade Reports-Grades will be posted online on I-Now and may be checked at any time.  Progress reports will be sent home to parents approximately halfway through each grading period (4 1/2 weeks). Report cards are distributed one week after each nine week grading period is complete.  Non-custodial parents who wish to receive a report card by mail should make a written request to the attendance secretary.  TCAP scores will be 15% of the second semester grades in core academic subjects..

Homework Hotline-Homework Hotline provides one-on-one free tutoring by phone to all Tennessee students and parents.  Bilingual assistance is available. 888-868-5777

Illnesses-If a student becomes too ill to remain in school, parents will be contacted by phone to come and pick up the student.  A student who contracts a contagious disease of any kind will be sent home from school and must remain at home until the condition or disease is corrected.

Library-If funding allows, our library opens at 7:15 a.m. each morning and remains open until 3:15 on Fridays and 4:15 p.m. Monday through Thursday afternoons. The library is designed to make supplementary resources available to students. Use of the library is encouraged within the guidelines and rules established by the librarian.  In order to encourage students to return books without fear of a penalty, no fines will be charged for overdue books. If a book is lost or damaged, it must be paid for by the student.

Lockers-A locker is assigned to each student. Students are to use only the locker assigned. Students are expected to keep lockers clean and not abuse them in any way. The school cannot be responsible for valuables left in lockers. Lockers are school property and are subject to search at any time.

Locks-Students are encouraged to put locks on lockers. Only school-authorized combination locks may be used on lockers. Locks can be purchased from the school office for $5.00 each (our cost). No other locks may be used on lockers. Unauthorized locks will be removed by school officials.

Medications-If prescribed medications are to be taken during school hours, a student's PHYSICIAN AND PARENT must sign a Tullahoma City Schools medication authorization form. A parent should bring the medication into the school IN THE ORIGINAL BOTTLE FROM THE PHARMACY. Non-prescription medications require a medication authorization form signed by the parent; these medications also must be in original, labeled containers. All medications are kept locked in the office. STUDENTS SHOULD NOT KEEP MEDICATION OF ANY TYPE IN THEIR POSSESSION.

Moment of Silence/Panther Pause-We will begin every day with a moment of silence. During this time all talking and movement shall cease. Any students in the hall are expected to stop movement and be quiet until the moment is over.

Personal Property-Articles of clothing or other personal property found should be turned in to the office.  Students losing items should notify the front office immediately; however, the school assumes NO responsibility for items lost or stolen on school property.  A lost and found cabinet is located on the cafeteria hallway.

Principal's List and Honor Roll-Students who earn all A's qualify for the Principal's list. Students who earn one B and the remainder all A's qualify for the Honor Roll. Students who receive a “U” for an enrichment class will not receive Principal’s List or Honor Roll status.  

PTO-PTO (Parent/Teacher Organization) is a positive way that teachers, parents, and students can all work together to help EMS be a better school.  The PTO works to provide support to, and communication with, parents, teachers, students, administrators, and the surrounding community.  The PTO board meets regularly to plan, organize, and support school functions.  The PTO sponsors many events in addition to providing workers for book fairs, sight and hearing screenings, concession stand, and chaperones for school events.  Parents interested in actively participating in the organization are encouraged to contact the school office.

Tardiness-A student is considered tardy if he/she is not seated in class when the 8:00 bell sounds. If a student is tardy, the student's agenda must be stamped and signed by the front office personnel before reporting to class. Excessive unexcused tardies (3 or more) to school or class may result in disciplinary action.

School Telephone- Students will be allowed to use the office phone only in cases of emergency. A student must have a pass from a teacher in order to use the phone.  Students and parents should make arrangements for transportation before the school day begins as students will not be allowed to call home to make such arrangements during the school day.

Textbooks-Textbooks are loaned to all students by Tullahoma City Schools and should be handled with care. Students are responsible for textbooks assigned to them. Students will be required to pay for books lost, stolen, or damaged. Fines for lost or damaged books are as follows:  IF the book is 1-6 years=100%  of cost and if 7+ years=50% of cost. All textbooks must be turned in at the time of the student's withdrawal from school or at the end of the class term. Records can be held until all damage charges are paid.

Withdrawal-The principal's office should be notified concerning withdrawal a day in advance so that proper forms may be completed. Students must officially withdraw from EMS through the front office. All materials must be returned to the school, and all debts must be paid before records will be released. A withdrawal form and immunization record will be given to the student for presentation to the new school.

Vehicles-Bikes are to be parked on the bike racks in front at the school. They should be locked, as the school cannot be responsible for stolen bicycles. Bikes are to be "walked" until off of school grounds in the afternoons.Students who have parental permission and are properly licensed may drive a motor scooter or motorcycle to school. Vehicles may not be ridden on schoolyard or sidewalks. This is a privilege and may be revoked. Students may not drive cars to school.

VIP Lounge-The VIP (Very Important Panthers) lounge will be used to recognize students for accomplishments.

Visitors-For the protection and security of students, any person entering the building during the school day must report directly to the office before going to any other part of the school. Students are not allowed to have visitors during the school day.  Due to the potential disruption of lunch schedules and seating assignments, students are not allowed to have visitors during lunch.

Webpage-EMS webpage address is www.eastpanthers.net. This webpage is updated regularly with school news, including a calendar of events, and student accomplishments. Parents and students are encouraged to utilize this tool for school information.