Discipline - Expulsion - Zero Tolerance


Expulsion is San Diego Unified School District's most serious discipline approach, requiring approval from the Board of Education. For up to two semesters, expelled students may not participate in any district- or school-sponsored activity, including regular classes, dances, athletics, and performing arts events. Instead, these students must attend a community day school or alternative education program.

Reasons for Expulsion

If a student's behavior falls under any of the outlined reasons for suspension, he or she may also be recommended for expulsion by a principal or designee. In addition, any violation of the district's Zero Tolerance Policy will automatically lead to a recommendation for expulsion for middle, junior high and high school students. These acts include:

  • Use, possession or sale of any weapon
    This includes guns, knives, explosives or other dangerous objects. Any object used in a dangerous manner is considered a weapon.

  • Brandishing a knife at another person
    This refers to waving a knife at someone in a threatening manner. Knife refers to any type of folding knife, razor (with unguarded blades), or any dirk, dagger, or weapon with a fixed, sharpened blade fitted primarily for stabbing.

  • Dangerous Behavior
    Repeated incidents of fighting, violence or otherwise causing serious injury to another.

  • Sexual Misconduct
    Attempting to commit or committing a sexual assault or committing a sexual battery.

  • Use, distribution, or possession of controlled substances
    Selling or providing someone a controlled substance, excluding tobacco, or possessing an amount for more than personal use. This includes prescription medications. A student found in possession of tobacco will be recommended for expulsion on the fourth offense.

For more detailed information, consult Procedure 6295, Expulsion or California Education Code 48900.

All students receive a Notice of Zero Tolerance Policy, available in English and Spanish , at the beginning of every school year, and are asked to read and sign it along with a parent or guardian, and return it to school.

Zero Tolerance for Weapons, Drugs & Violence

The district's Zero Tolerance Policy is designed to make your school a safe environment and to provide an appropriate learning environment for students. It applies to middle and senior high school students. The policy requires suspension or expulsion for students who violate rules related to weapons, controlled substances or violence.

The Board of Education has approved the following Zero Tolerance Policy:

  • Use, possession or brandishing of a weapon will result in a recommendation for expulsion. A weapon is defined as, but not limited to, a firearm, pistol replica, starter pistol, stun gun, BB gun or pellet gun, a knife of any size or type, a dirk, dagger, razor, slingshot, any explosives or fireworks. Any object used in a dangerous manner will also be considered a weapon.

  • Repeated incidents of fighting, violent acts, or causing serious injury to another person will result in a recommendation for expulsion.

  • Attempting to commit or committing a sexual assault and/or sexual battery.

  • Our district has a NO ALCOHOL, TOBACCO, or other DRUG USE POLICY. If a student is found to be selling, furnishing, or possessing an amount determined to be for more than personal use of controlled/prohibited substances, the student will be recommended for expulsion on a first offense. For possession or use, expulsion will be recommended on the third offense, except for tobacco offenses. If a student is found in possession of tobacco, the student will be recommended for expulsion on the fourth offense.

  • In addition to discipline, if a student is found to have violated the law, the student may be arrested and taken to a juvenile detention facility.

  • Expulsion from San Diego Unified School District will result in the loss of privileges to attend school or extracurricular activities. A student may be placed in an alternative school or program.

  • The Zero Tolerance Policy requires a recommendation for expulsion if the offense occurs on school campus or at a school activity, whether on or off campus.

  • Expulsion may be recommended for an offense that occurs during lunch period - off campus, and during, or while going to or from a school-sponsored activity.

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