ST. AUGUSTINE, Fla. – The St. Johns County School District released an online survey Monday, polling district families for their opinions on the current version of its Student Code of Conduct.
The document serves as the rules and guidelines for how students are expected to behave when they attend public schools, covering everything from transportation and attendance to health and the dress code.
The document also outlines which levels of discipline should be doled out for various offenses.
The survey’s first question asks parents to disclose in which grade their child is enrolled. The following 12 questions ask parents to note their level of approval of each section of the conduct code.
Student Code of Conduct sections featured in the survey:
- Student Dress
- Standards Of Conduct For Students Transported By School Bus
- Student Attendance
- School Health
- Student Discipline Overview
- Level 1 Offenses
- Level 2 Offenses
- Level 3 Offenses
- Level 4 Offenses
- Procedures Relating To Disciplinary Actions
- Procedures For Students With Disabilities
The 14th and final question in the survey asked parents to fill out a text box with “any comments or suggestions relating to any section in this survey.”
“We have done surveys in the past for the Student Code of Conduct administered through our School Advisory Councils,” said SJCSD spokesperson Christina Upchurch. “Though, in an effort to be even more inclusive, we targeted all parents and staff through our mass notification system this year.”
The survey comes eight months after the district asked parents to specifically cite their assessment of one particular chapter in the rules: the dress code.
That July 2021 survey followed months of backlash in the district over how the code was written and how it was being applied. Many parents and students said females were being disproportionately and unreasonably targeted with dress code discipline.
“I do think progress was definitely made in the way that the dress code is worded so that it does not target specific genders, and those areas were definitely addressed, but I don’t think we’re all the way because we have not improved the enforcement piece,” said Laura Kubart, a parent of two St. Johns County students. “This dress coding concept needs to stop because it doesn’t do anything productive for anybody, and it’s harmful and unnecessary.”
Earlier last year, one parent sent a letter to the U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights requesting an investigation into the district’s practices. That investigation would later be launched after a widely reported fiasco involving the 2020-2021 yearbook at Bartram Trail High School.
The survey will be available until the end of business on April 8.
“It will take a while to go through all data depending on how many [responses] we receive,” said Upchurch. “The comments are what will need to be looked at individually and will take the most time.”
Upchurch said the results will be presented to the School Board at a workshop after they’re compiled and formatted.