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Student Interviews, Searches and Arrests

Section J - Students

Policy Title: Student Interviews, Searches and Arrests
Policy Code: JIH

Print Version (in PDF)

Interviews

School officials may question students regarding matters incident to school without limitation, while remaining cognizant of the ethical requirements of Governing Board Policy GBEA. The principal is always encouraged to notify parents when their student is interviewed for any purpose by school administration; parental contact is required if a student interviewed is then subject to discipline for a serious offense. A student may decline at any time to be interviewed by a peace officer.

When child abuse or abandonment of a student is alleged.

If a child protective services worker or peace officer enters the campus requesting to interview a student attending the school, the school administrator shall be notified. Access to interview shall be granted when the child to be interviewed is the subject of, or is the sibling of, or is living with the child who is the subject of an abuse or abandonment investigation. The personnel of the District shall cooperate with the investigating child protective services worker or peace officer.

If a student is taken into temporary custody in accordance with A.R.S. §8-821, the child protective services worker or peace officer may be reminded to notify the student's parent of custody, pursuant to A.R.S. §8-823.

The child protective services worker or peace officer shall be requested to establish proper identification and complete and sign a "Form for Signature of Interviewing Officer." Six (6) hours following the relinquishment of custody by the school, school personnel may respond to inquiries about the temporary custody of the child and may, if considered necessary, call the parent.

Abuse or abandonment is not alleged.

No issue of student population safety is presented. If a peace officer enters the campus requesting to interview a student attending the school on an issue other than upon request of the school or for abuse or abandonment, the school administrator shall be notified. If the officer directs that parents are not to be contacted because the interview is related to criminal activity of the parent(s)/guardian(s), the school official shall comply with the request. Unless these circumstances exist, the parent will be contacted and will be asked if they wish the student to be interviewed. If the parent consents, the parent will be requested to be present or to authorize the interview in their absence within the school day of the request. Where an attempt was made and the parent(s) could not be reached or did not consent within the school day of the request, the peace officer will then be requested to contact the parent(s) and make arrangements to question the student at another time and place.

Safety of the student population is of concern. When a peace officer is present on the campus to interview students at the request of school authorities due to concerns for the safety of the students in the school population, parent contact shall only be made if a student is taken into custody or following the determination that the student may be subject to discipline for a serious offense. The peace officer present at the request of the school for the continued maintenance of safety and order may interview students as necessary regarding school related issues as determined by school officials, and parents will be contacted if the student is to be taken into custody or if the student is subject to discipline for a serious offense.

Searches

School administrators have the right to search and seize property, including school property temporarily assigned to students, when there is reason to believe that some material or matter detrimental to health, safety, and welfare of the student(s) exists. Removal of a student's clothing (i.e., shoes, socks, pants, jackets, etc.) is overly intrusive for purposes of most student searches and is improper absent an emergency justifying the intrusion, as determined after consultation with law enforcement personnel and/or the Superintendent.

Items provided by the District for storage (e.g., lockers, desks) or personal items are provided as a convenience to the student but remain the property of the school and are subject to its control and supervision. Students have no reasonable expectancy of privacy, and lockers, desks, storage areas, etc., may be inspected at any time with or without reasons, or with or without notice, by school administrators.

Arrest

When a peace officer enters a campus providing a warrant or subpoena or expressing intent to take a student into custody, the office staff shall request the peace officer establish proper identification, complete, and sign a form for signature of an arresting officer or interviewing officer. The school staff shall cooperate with the officer in locating the child within the school. School officials may respond to parental inquiries about the arrest or may, if necessary, explain the relinquishment of custody by the school and the location of the student, if known, upon contact by the parent.

Adopted: November 21, 1995
Revision: September 9, 2008 (numeric to letter format only)
Revision: August 23, 2011

LEGAL REF.:
A.R.S. §8-302, 8-303, 8-304, 8-821, 8-823, 13-3881, 13-3883, 15-342
A.G.O. I04-033, I91-035, I88-062, I82-094, I77-211

CROSS REF
GBEA – Staff Ethics

Replaces TUSD Policy # 5063