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SECTION 3: GENERAL STANDARDS OF CONDUCT

3.1 Social Networking

The Kansas State School for the Blind (KSSB) discourages school employees from socializing with KSSB students outside of school in person or by interactive communication including, but not limited to, social networking websites such as Twitter and Facebook.

No school employee shall post any school data, documents, photographs or other school owned or created information on any website including social media websites. Further, the posting of any private or confidential school material on any websites is strictly prohibited.

School employees are prohibited from engaging in any conduct in person, or by interactive communication, including social networking websites, which violates the law, school policies, or other standards of conduct. Employees who violate this policy may face discipline and/or termination in line with other school policies and/or collective bargaining agreements, if applicable.

Nothing in this policy prohibits employees or KSSB students from the use of educational websites if such sites are used solely for educational purposes. It is understood that access to social networking and other media sites does occur from time to time, but care must be taken not to violate KSSDB policies or the law, and to insure that it does not habitually take time from the performance of one's duties or have a negative impact on the work environment.

3.2 Violence in the Workplace

KSSB has a zero tolerance policy for workplace violence. Any attempted, be it physical or verbal, violence will not be tolerated; this includes the use of profanity. If you have experienced any workplace violence, notify your supervisor or Human Resources immediately. Employees are entitled to have a safe and secure workplace.

Bullying

KSSB has a zero tolerance policy for bullying whether it be students or staff involved. Bullying means:

? any intentional gesture or any intentional written, verbal or physical act or threat that is sufficiently severe, persistent or pervasive that it creates an intimidating, threatening or abusive environment for a student or staff member that a reasonable person, under the circumstances, knows or should know will have the effect of:

Harming a student or staff member, whether physically or mentally.

Damaging a student's or staff member's property.

Placing a student or staff member in reasonable fear of harm to themselves or to their property.

? any other form of intimidation or harassment prohibited by any policy of KSSB.

A copy of the KSSB Bullying Prevention Plan is available in the school offices.

3.3 KSSB Promotes Diversity

Diversity Vision Statement: KSSB shall ensure equal access to opportunity and workforce advancement, and shall promote respect for the dignity of others, learning about cultures, becoming sensitive to differences, and respecting those differences.

What is Diversity?

Diversity is each and all of us, individually and collectively. It is what we do and how we do it, individually and collectively. Our challenge as individuals and as a community is to expect, appreciate, value, and respect diversity in those around us.

Diversity is everything that makes individuals different and those things about individuals that are similar. Diversity refers to things you can see and things you can't see in the people around you, at anytime, anywhere. Culture, gender, age, ethnicity, nationality, geography, lifestyle and education are just a few dimensions of diversity present in every individual. Diversity speaks to people and their unique experiences. Diversity is language and how people use it. Dimensions of diversity such as culture, age, ethnicity and geography are reflected in the way people talk.

People using their talents and skills to do different things to accomplish similar goals -- this is also diversity. Faculty in departments provide different academic experiences yet share the similar goal of educating blind/vi youth. Instructional Services, Residential Services, and Support Services personnel provide very unique services, yet all focus on internal customer service. Using different approaches, teaching, dorm, and support staff impact the effect of the educational process of each student. As a result, you will have unique opportunities to broaden your understanding and respect of others, providing each of us with opportunities for personal and professional growth. Diversity requires that we create an environment where no one is advantaged or disadvantaged by prejudices and biases but where every person is encouraged to fully utilize his/her unique talents, skills and abilities.

3.4 Professional Conduct

When an individual joins KSSB, that person becomes part of a team. Each person is part of his departmental team and is responsible for doing the best job he can in a cooperative manner. In an organization such as ours, each department is dependent on the others. Teamwork and cooperation between employees and departments is very important. Whatever your work may be, it is necessary to the efficient and successful operation of the entire school.

All employees are expected to devote their full working day to the business of the School. Work schedules, break time, meal time, and all leaves of absence are set by the Superintendent or by the Supervisor of their department with the approval of the Superintendent. They are consistent with State and Federal rules, regulations, and laws. Absenteeism and tardiness are a part of your review.

Employees are required to notify KSSB if unable to report to work. Employees are expected to arrive at work BEFORE their assigned work schedule, in time to begin their duties at the scheduled time. Check with your supervisor regarding the policy on this in your department.

Employees are expected to use state property carefully and only with proper authorization. It is expected that all employees will maintain a courteous attitude toward students, parents, fellow employees, and the public. This attitude and attendance are part of the annual review process for all staff.

3.5 Reporting of Child Abuse

It is the policy of the State of Kansas and KSSB to provide protection for children from being the subject of physical, mental, emotional, or sexual abuse or neglect by requiring the prompt reporting of suspected abuse and/or neglect. We will insure the prompt and thorough investigation of those reports by working with the Department of Children and Families (DCF). Reports will be made to the Kansas Protection Report Center (1-800-922-5330).

Immediately after reporting an incident to the Department of Children and Families

(DCF), staff members are to report the incident to their supervisor, and/or the Assistant Superintendent, and/or the Superintendent. When employees notify their supervisor, the supervisor is to immediately notify the Superintendent.

State law requires that willful and knowing failure to report suspected abuse, and preventing or interfering with the intent to prevent the making of a report by a mandated reporter, is a class B misdemeanor. All KSSB employees are mandated reporters.

Physical Abuse: The use of more force than is necessary usually resulting in physical injury in the form of bruises, abrasions, broken bones, or dislocated joints.

Neglect: The intentional or unintentional leaving of children without supervision where the likelihood of serious physical injury is high.

Verbal Abuse: The use of derogatory, extremely negative language said in such a manner as to demean an individual's self-esteem. This is also called mental or emotional abuse.

Sexual Abuse: Sexual activity between adults and children, including indecent liberties with a minor (under 16 years) which could include sexual battery, sodomy, sexual intercourse, sexual exploitation, or gratification (including taking nude or sexual pictures of students or distributing sexual pictures), or any sexual contact with a child. Any of these could occur willfully by the child, be submitted to by the child, or forced upon the child. In the state of Kansas, the age of consent is 16 years. This means that any child under the age of 16 cannot agree to participate in sexual activity and cannot legally participate in any sexual activity. It is equally inappropriate for any adult to do any of the above with any student over the age of 16.

In any given situation, humiliation techniques (public embarrassment), corporal punishment (striking a student with hand or object), seclusion (placing a student alone in a locked room), and mechanical restraint (restricting a student's movement by limiting the use of their limbs with belts, ropes, etc.) are not permitted at KSSB.

KSSB reserves the right to also investigate any allegation of abuse.

Corporal Punishment: No teacher or administrator shall use physical force or physical contact against a student or strike a student as punishment for a violation. However, nothing in this policy shall be construed to keep a teacher or administrator from using reasonable and necessary physical force to restrain a student in order to protect one's self, the student, or other persons, to prevent the destruction of property, or to prevent any illegal overt act on the part of the student.

3.6 Emergency Safety Intervention (ESI) - Used only in rare, specific occasions

In the event any student needs to be restrained for his safety or the safety of others, or to prevent the immediate destruction of property, the following procedures should always be followed as demonstrated in the Crisis Prevention and Intervention (CPI) program training. If the employee present/involved has not had CPI training she should immediately contact her supervisor to inform him of this dangerous situation so trained personnel can be sent to the situation site immediately.

The safe immobilization of the student will never include the following:

· Restraint in a manner that will prevent the student from communicating with you either with voice or visual language.

· Holding a student in prone (face down), supine (face up) or in any other manner where a student's airway could be obstructed.

· Use of ANY chemical or physical restraints. Law enforcement may use these types of restraint at their sole discretion.

KSSB instructional employees will receive CPI training annually. If an employee has not had this training, he should contact his immediate supervisor and request training. The following procedure DOES NOT constitute physical restraint:

· Physically escorting a student who is acting out by touching or holding the hand, wrist, arm, shoulder, or back of a student in order to induce the student to walk to a safe location.

Seclusion - This type of restraint is never practiced at KSSB.

Time Out - is neither emergency restraint nor seclusion. Time out is defined in regulations as a behavioral intervention in which the student is temporarily removed from a learning activity without being confined.

In-School Suspension - is neither emergency restraint nor seclusion. In-school suspension places a student in a safe neutral place where the student can work on school work or other activity as assigned by a teacher or school administrator. The student is not isolated from adults or peers.

Required Emergency Safety Intervention Documentation

· Name(s) of school personnel who participated in restraint intervention.

· Name(s) of any school personnel who supervised the restraint intervention.

· Date and Time of the intervention.

· Type of restraint intervention used.

· Length of time (minutes) the restraint intervention was used.

Parent Notification

Notification of the use of ESI shall be made to parents or legal guardian on the day ESI is administered, but no longer than 2 school days after its use. Parents are advised of their right to file a formal complaint with the Superintendent and other due process rights.

Debriefing

Once the emergency safety intervention is complete and the student is deemed safe, a certified CPI trainer shall facilitate a meeting with all personnel involved to review the following:

· Cause of the behavior.

· Types of intervention that could have been used to avoid acceleration of behavior that necessitated the use of ESI.

· Type/techniques of restraint used and whether they were appropriate for the student and/or the situation.

Reporting to KSDE

The school will provide a written report to the Superintendent and Assistant Superintendent for the purpose of reporting to the Kansas Department of Education.

3.7 KSSB Work Rules

Work Rules are created by management, within its authority and discretion, to define the rights of employees on the job. When employee conduct would harm the interests of the State as an employer, KSSB may enforce Work Rules outside of work hours.

The rules listed below cannot cover every behavior or eventuality, but are guidelines for employees to govern their behavior by, along with good judgment and professional work ethics. The Work Rules are listed as activities that are prohibited. These activities may result in disciplinary action ranging from reprimand to immediate discharge, depending upon the seriousness and/or frequency of the prohibited activities. Additional rules are covered in State Statutes and Regulations. Talk with your supervisor if you have any questions about Work Rules.

Employees of KSSB are prohibited from committing any of the following acts (these are not inclusive and are only a partial list) in the performance of their work:

· Failing to or refusing to follow written or verbal instructions of supervisory authority, or failing to or refusing to carry out work assignments without good cause.

· Bringing children/friends/relatives to the work site while on duty.

· Neglecting to or failing to perform job duties or responsibilities.

· Loafing, loitering, sleeping, or engaging in other unauthorized personal activities during working hours.

· Disclosing confidential information and/or records without authorization.

· Intentionally falsifying records or intentionally giving false information to other State agencies, private organizations, or employees responsible for record keeping.

· Failing to observe all safety rules and practices including, but not limited to, the use of protective equipment and clothing, and in the operation of vehicles and equipment.

· Intentionally altering, withholding, removing, or destroying records, documents, or other materials to conceal wrongdoing or violation of the work rules by the employee or others.

· Directing, encouraging, or knowingly permitting others to intentionally falsify records or give false information to other State agencies or private organizations or to employees responsible for record keeping.

· Stealing State or an employee's personal property, or personally acquiring or using State property for unauthorized purposes.

· Failing to report promptly at the scheduled starting time, leaving before the end of the scheduled work shift, or leaving the place of duty during a work shift without permission (in most instances, excluding lunch periods). Exempt employees must follow leave request procedures for ANY time away from work. A supervisor may require an exempt employee to use increments of half-day leave if the employee abuses time away from work.

· Failing to notify the proper authority of unexpected absence or tardiness for any reason, one hour prior to scheduled starting time, and/or within specific timeframe and procedure established by an individual department; unexcused or excessive absences.

· Failing to observe the time limits of lunch (1/2 - 1 hour) or breaks. Breaks (paid time) are optional if work schedule permits. This is a benefit not a right.

· Failing to properly maintain equipment according to common standards.

· Abusing or misusing State or private property, equipment, telephones, vehicles, materials, credit cards, keys, passes, and staff identification including knowingly permitting, encouraging, or directing others to misuse, abuse or use State property for unauthorized purposes including entering State property outside of assigned work hours without authorization.

· Using work computer for other than work related matters is discouraged. (All messages distributed via the KSSB email system, even personal emails, as well as computers are KSSB's property.) You must have no expectation of privacy in anything that you create, store, send, or receive on KSSB computers. Staff and students are prohibited from: a) sending or forwarding emails containing libelous, defamatory, offensive, racist or obscene remarks; b) forwarding or copying a personal message or attachment belonging to another user without first acquiring permission from the originator; c) sending unsolicited email messages or chain mail; d) forging or attempting to forge email messages, or disguising or attempting to disguise your identity when sending email. Email "mailboxes" should not exceed 75% full. All business emails shall contain a digital signature approved by the IT Department.

· Making false or malicious statements about other employees, supervisors, or KSSB.

· Threatening to inflict, attempting to inflict, or inflicting bodily injury on others.

· Threatening, intimidating, harassing, or using abusive language toward others.

· Interfering with an employee's performance of their duties.

· Using official stationery (agency letterhead) without administrative authorization.

· Possessing any weapon on the KSSB campus or at other sanctioned KSSB activities off campus is prohibited, subject to Kansas law.

· Possessing or using alcohol or controlled substances (unless medically prescribed) while on State time or property including reporting for work in an unsafe condition due to the influence of alcohol or other drugs.

· Conducting oneself in a manner unbecoming a State employee (example: profanity, lewd gestures, sexually explicit or otherwise inappropriate portrayals on social or publicly accessible websites will be considered a violation of K.S.A. 75-2949f).

· Littering, creating unsanitary or unsafe conditions.

· Selling commercial products or services on State property during working hours.

· Soliciting funds or donations for any purpose not directly related to the benefit of KSSB during working hours without authorization.

· Committing or participating in workplace gossip, rough or boisterous play, pranks, and offensive jokes, as they may develop into a serious and dangerous chain of events.

· Lending or borrowing agency keys and key access badges without authorization. Duplicating keys is prohibited, except by authorized employees.

· Dressing inappropriately for the workplace. Staff has a responsibility to dress appropriately for the workplace. This agency has liberal standards for dress, but each individual must keep in mind the reasons that we want to present a good image. First, part of our curriculum is to teach students that appearance is extremely important and that appropriate dress varies from situation to situation, i.e., business versus leisure. This is a critical concept for the success of young people transitioning to adult roles and responsibilities. Second, our public image as a school and State agency is directly connected to how we are perceived by parents and visitors. It is understood that appropriate dress varies according to job assignment, i.e., classroom versus maintenance, but each has its own set of generally accepted standards for attire. Any attire or appearance that is disruptive to a school environment will be considered inappropriate. Please consider these issues and dress accordingly.

· Gambling at the workplace, which includes tournament pools, subject to Kansas law.

· Soliciting or accepting compensation, reward, or gift from outside sources for any matter related to your job responsibilities as a KSSB employee.

· Inappropriately and/or excessively using personal cell phones or school phones for personal phone calls. Cell phones are conveniences which should not interfere with or distract from workplace responsibilities. Non-work related use should be limited to break time and meal time. Check with your department Supervisor for specific instructions. Non-critical work related use should be planned to avoid disruption of classroom and student related service delivery. Telephone courtesy is essential. Much business is conducted over the telephone, and the lines should not be tied up with personal phone calls. If a personal call is necessary, please try to make it as brief as possible so it does not interfere with work. Emergency calls may be made or received any time. An emergency is regarded as illness or severe injury, etc. Long distance calls that incur a charge must be for OFFICIAL school business.

3.8 Video Surveillance

Video surveillance is conducted to promote the safety of employees, students, and visitors, as well as the security of facilities. KSSB may conduct video surveillance of any portion of its premises at any time, the only exception being private areas such as restrooms, dressing rooms, bedrooms, etc., and the video cameras will be positioned in appropriate places in order to help promote the safety and security of people and property.