Skip Navigation
X
X

RTCS Handbook

 

Disclaimer

The guidelines set forth in this handbook are not exhaustive,
and the Administration reserves the right to make changes
as deemed necessary.

            

Organization
Vision
The vision of Robinson Township Christian School is that our students will acquire wisdom, knowledge, a Biblical worldview, and a compassion for others, expressed by a wholehearted love for Jesus Christ.
    
Mission Statement of Robinson Township Christian School
The mission of Robinson Township Christian School is to provide a Christ-centered education in which students are motivated to seek wisdom and knowledge and to develop a Christian character and witness, so that they may faithfully fulfill their calling in church, family, and society.

Our Core Values
The foundation of Robinson Township Christian School is the Scripture of the Old and New Testaments, the infallible Word of God, as summarized in the Westminster Confession of Faith.  On this basis, we affirm the following principles for Christian education:

1.    Scriptural Truth
Scripture is the revealed Word of God and is taught as truth.

Students are taught that:
•    They are created in the image of God.  (Genesis 1:26-27)
•    They must confront the issues of sin and redemption.  (Romans 3:23, 1 John 1:9)
•    They can know God as revealed in Christ and made present through the Holy Spirit.  (Luke 11:13, John 20:22)

2.    Integration
Every element of the curriculum is permeated with God’s Word.

Learning includes an understanding of:
•    Christ as our Creator, Sustainer, and Lord.
•    Knowledge as dependent on God’s revelation in His creation and in His Word.
•    Human history and God’s providential activity in it.
•    Humanity, its cultures, and how ideologies have shaped people and their institutions.
•    How Christians are called to respond to and engage the world.

3.    Christian Personnel
The Board, administration, and faculty of the school are evangelical Christians of Reformed convictions.

All school personnel:
•    Know Jesus Christ as their personal Savior.
•    Model Christ in their teaching and leading.  (Matthew 10:24)
•    Exhibit love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness,
self-control.  (Galatians 5:22–23)
•    View children as image-bearers of God, and encourage students to develop
 talents and gifts to God’s honor.
•    Reflect and support the School’s foundation, vision, mission, and core values.

4.    Student Potential
Every learning experience aims to engage students toward their full potential in Christ.

Learning will focus on:
•    The individual’s relationship and contribution to society.
•    Encouraging students to use their minds to the best of their ability in service to God.
•    Making competent and responsive disciples of Jesus Christ.  (Matthew 28:19–20)
•    Preparing for works of service.  (Ephesians 4:12–13)
•    Developing an eternal view of life.

5.    Operational Practice
All the School’s practices are grounded in Biblical norms and principles.

Biblical standards permeate:
•    Governance.
•    Business/Finance.
•    Development/Marketing.
•    Human resources.
•    Governmental relations.
•    Classroom management.


References
Evearitt, Timothy. 1996.  Leading a Christian School: A Book for Administrators and Board Members. The Center for the Advancement of Christian Education, Covenant College: Lookout Mtn., GA.
    DeWitt, John, R.  1981. What is the Reformed Faith?  Polton Press: Scotland.
Graham, Donovan, L.  2003.  Teaching Redemptively: Bringing Grace and Truth into Your Classroom. Purposeful Design: Colorado Springs.
Van Brummelen, Harro. 2002. Stepping Stones to Curriculum: A Biblical Path.  Purposeful Design: Colorado Springs.

History
Robinson Township Christian School was organized in 1978 by individuals dedicated to Christian education from Grace Orthodox Presbyterian Church in Sewickley, and Providence Presbyterian Church in Robinson Township.  The classes that year enrolled a total of 15 students in kindergarten and first grade.  

Milestones
•    1978—School opens with 15 students K–1st
•    1983—New educational wing built by PPC accommodates growing school
•    1985—10 students graduate from 8th grade
•    1999—High school program begins
•    2002—Building additional classrooms for high school begins
•    2003—The first senior class graduates
•    2013—Began transition to the Classical Model of Education
•    2018—Our 40th year begins

Government
Robinson Township Christian School was formed by a group of individuals dedicated to the purpose and goals of Christian education.  These founders formed a Corporation in 1978 by adopting Articles of Incorporation and Bylaws to direct the course of the School.

Corporation
Steps to Becoming a Corporation Member
•    Do you have a commitment to Christian education, love of covenant children, and a desire to see a Christ-centered worldview taught in a nurturing educational environment?
•    Do you believe in the infallible and inerrant Word of God set forth in the Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments?
•    Do you hold to the system of Biblical doctrine summarized in the Westminster Confession of Faith and Westminster Larger and Shorter Catechisms?
If so, you can request to become a member of the RTCS Corporation by submitting a letter or notifying the Board President of your interest.  Nominees to the Corporation are reviewed by the School Board.  If eligible, the Corporation will vote on your acceptance at the next scheduled Corporation meeting (fall and spring).  Corporation members may vote on school issues at the following corporation meeting.  In addition, a $25 ($50 per family) yearly fee is required for membership.  Any parent/guardian of a Robinson Township Christian School student is not required to pay the $25 fee. The Corporation elects from its members a rotating Board of Directors, charging them with the responsibilities of administering the policies and bylaws of the School.

Professional Accreditation and Associations
Robinson Township Christian School is authorized by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania to provide daily instruction.  The teachers at Robinson Township Christian School are dedicated Christians who have received degrees in education from accredited colleges and universities and are either certified by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania or are working toward that certification.  They are selected on the dual criteria of Christian commitment and exceptional competence in teaching.  
Our School is a member of Christian Schools International (CSI), located in Grand Rapids, Michigan, and the Association of Christian Schools International (ACSI), located in Colorado Springs, Colorado.  These organizations were founded to accomplish the purpose of promoting, establishing, and equipping Christian schools.

Attendance

After-School Hours
Under normal circumstances, the School will be locked after 4 p.m.  After-school activities—such as detention, sports, drama, clubs, academic games, and student council—have scheduled activity times.  No students are to remain in the School or on School property unattended.  Parents/Guardians who abuse this policy may be required to face the Board of Directors.

Arrival and Early-Morning Procedures:  K–6th Grades
Students are to enter the School immediately through the main school doors.  No one will be let off the bus other than the School entrance.  Students are to go immediately to their homeroom and follow the guidelines established by their teachers.

Arrival and Early-Morning Procedures:  7th–12th Grades
Students are to enter the School immediately through the main school doors.  No one will be let off the bus at any other place than the school entrance.  The time before the first bell for homeroom should be used to gather materials for the day’s classes, turn in attendance excuses to the main office, and settle business with the Principal or teachers, etc.  At the sound of the bell, students should report to homeroom quickly.  They should be attentive and cooperative during the morning exercises, including devotions and prayer.  They should respond verbally when their names are called for attendance and listen carefully to any announcements for the day.  Students should participate reverently in morning prayer and devotions. Students arriving after school begins must be signed in by a parent or guardian at the office and will receive a tardy slip to be admitted to class.

Attendance
Daily attendance for class is required for students of compulsory school age in Pennsylvania.  Absence from school is recorded daily.  A written excuse from a parent/guardian stating the reason for the absence must be presented after the absence, when the student returns to school.  If a written excuse is not received by the end of a marking period, the unexcused absence will remain on the student’s record.  All absences and tardy arrivals are recorded in the permanent record for lifetime referral.
    
Absence is excused in case of illness, death in the family, and other grave reasons or where explicit permission is given.  Absence is unexcused if a written excuse is not presented or for unapproved activities.   
    
A student is responsible for making up work when absent from school, and for completing satisfactorily the courses of study prescribed by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and Robinson Township Christian School.
    
If there is a serious attendance problem, the information will be documented and presented to the Education Committee.  The school district truancy authorities will be contacted in accordance with Pennsylvania law, and the student may face possible expulsion.

Students must follow the procedures below when absent:
1.    Have parent/guardian call the School on the morning of absence between 8–9 a.m.
2.    Provide a written excuse to the teacher the morning of returning to school. Pennsylvania mandates that a written excuse be on file for each absent day.
3.    Complete all missed work according to each teacher’s requirement.
4.    Students arriving after school begins or leaving before 3 p.m. must sign in or out at the office.

Students will be allowed a maximum of 10 absences without a doctor’s excuse.  Absences beyond 10 days are subject to review and action of the School Board.
    
A student who misses more than 20 days of a school year, excused or unexcused, may be required to repeat the year, or individual courses, at the discretion of the School Board.
 
Bell Schedule:  7th–12th Grades

Period
Begins
Ends
Length in Minutes*
Homeroom/1
8:20
9:04
44
2
9:06
9:46
40
3
9:48
10:28
40
4
10:30
11:10
40
5
11:12
11:52
40
6
11:54
12:24
30
LUNCH
12:24
12:48
24
7
12:48
1:28
40
8
1:30
2:10
40
9
2:12
2:52
40
Lockers/Homeroom
2:53
 
 


*Two minutes are given between classes.

Cancellations, Two-Hour Delays, Mandatory Days
Pennsylvania state law requires that all students in elementary through high school attend school 180 days.  A two-hour-delay day constitutes a school day and need not be made up.  The school year may be extended to accommodate missed days in elementary through high-school grades.  Inclement-weather days and two-hour delays will cause cancellations to scheduled morning programs.  These cancellations are an unavoidable circumstance.

Daily Schedule and Change of Classes:  7th–12th Grades
The usual daily program consists of nine class periods with a two-minute change of classes.  Lunch is
24 minutes.  Special schedules are used for two-hour delays, half-days, group testing, assemblies, and other special events.  These are noted in advance.

During change of classes, students are to proceed quickly and quietly.  Traffic in the hallways is two-way.  Keep to the right at all times and in single file.  This will ensure the safety and speed for all.  At no time is running in the hall permitted.

Students should remember that school hallways are often used by visitors to Providence Presbyterian Church.  Students are expected to exercise courtesy (e.g., opening doors, greeting people, permitting them right-of-way in the hallway) toward adults in the hallway.

Time does not permit going to lockers for books between classes.  Students are responsible for being on time for all classes.

Dismissal Procedures

Vehicles
Authorized drivers picking up students should pull line up in the lower level of the parking lot and wait in your car.  Students who are driven to school (1st–12th grade) are dismissed from the school doors as each vehicle pulls to the front of the line.  Morning kindergarten is dismissed in the same manner. Please exercise caution as you enter the school parking lot.

Drivers are to adhere to the following guidelines:
1.    Speed limit in parking lot is 5 mph.
2.    Do not leave vehicle unattended unless you use a parking space to enter the building.

Student drivers must:
1.    Have a completed RTCS Parking Permit Form on file in office.
2.    Follow same guidelines as other drivers.
3.    Have written parental consent to drive other students.
4.    Pick up students from the dismissal area only.
5.    Not drive for school field trips.

Students who use the bus systems will be dismissed in groups from the school doors.

Transportation changes must be submitted to the office by 1 p.m. on full days and by 10 a.m. on half days.

Inclement Weather
News of cancellation or delay will be heard/seen on these radio/TV stations:   KDKA Radio 1020, KDKA-TV, WPXI-TV, WTAE-TV, or their respective Web sites.  Listen/Watch for our school name.  You should listen for your own school district’s closing or delays so you know when your children will be picked up by the school bus.  If your school district cancels and you decide not to bring your child, he/she is legally excused from attending RTCS that day.  Numerous news sites offer signup for text alert messaging; you will automatically receive a text message if RTCS appears on a delay or cancellation list. You also may call the school office to hear a message on the school voice mail if there is a change in the school day.

If your child is in morning kindergarten and we have a two-hour delay, kindergarten will be held from
10:20 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.  All students should pack a lunch, and parents are responsible for transportation home.  

School Hours
School is in session from:
8:20 a.m.–2:55 p.m.      Grades 1–6
8:20 a.m.–2:55 p.m.    Grades 7–12
8:20 a.m.–Noon    Morning kindergarten
8:20 a.m.–Noon    Half-day dismissal
    
All students are expected to attend school regularly and punctually.  Students should be in the building in time for homeroom period but not before 8 a.m.  At the end of the school session, students are to be picked up no later than 3:10 p.m. (or 12:10 p.m. for morning kindergarten session) unless there are unavoidable circumstances for which you should call to explain.

Tardiness— K–6th Grades
Students are considered tardy for school if they are not in their homerooms at 8:20 a.m.  A student who comes late to school must present a written excuse to an office staff member or have a parent/guardian sign him/her in at the office before going to class.  A Tardy Slip should be shown to the teacher whose class the student is entering.  
    
Students are not responsible if the busses on which they ride arrive late to school.  This is considered excused tardiness.  In this event, the student still must report to the office before going to class.

Tardiness— 7th–12th Grades
Students are considered tardy for school if they are not in their homerooms when the door closes after the 8:20 a.m. bell rings, even if they are in the building, unless their absence from class is authorized by the Principal.
    
A student who comes late to school must present a written excuse to an office staff member or have a parent/guardian sign him/her in at the office before going to class.  A Tardy Slip should be shown to the teacher whose class the student is entering.
    
Unexcused tardiness and frequent tardiness, even with parental excuse, may result in disciplinary action (i.e., detention, suspension, etc.).  Students who are detained by a teacher after class should receive an admit slip from that teacher to present to the teacher of the next class.

Academics

Add/Drop Policy
After numerous conferences with teachers, advisors, and parents/guardians, a schedule is formulated to fit the student’s ability and career choice.  Each student is expected to remain in the courses selected.

In exceptional cases, changes may be possible after due consideration of graduation requirements and subject sequences.  Requests for changes would fall into two categories:  those initiated by school/teacher and those initiated by student/parent.  For reasons of improper placement, a course change can be initiated by the school/teacher.  The student’s schedule is altered in conference with the subject teacher and the scheduler.  A course change initiated by a student/parent should follow this procedure:
1.    Contact the subject teacher regarding the possibility of dropping the course.
2.    Notify the scheduler regarding options for a replacement course.
3.    Contact the receiving subject teacher, if applicable.
4.    Submit the request along with appropriate signatures to the office for the files.  Signatures include the teacher of the dropped course, the teacher of the added course, if applicable, the Principal, and the signature of a parent/guardian agreeing with the decision.

All changes should be made by the middle of the first marking period.

Field Trips
Field trips are planned to provide students with educational and/or recreational experiences outside of the classroom.  Parental permission is required to participate in class trips.  Permission slips must be signed by a parent/guardian for the student to attend the field trip.
    
Help is often needed to transport students on field trips or for sports events.  School parents/guardians have been generous in their assistance.  Parents/Guardians who want to provide transportation to events must complete a Volunteer Driver Application Form at the beginning of the academic year as well as have the PA State Law required clearances.  Younger siblings are not permitted to attend unless express permission has been given by the teacher.

Grading System
Report cards are issued four times per year (November, January, March, and June) to all students.

Kindergarten (All Subjects)
+    Your child has mastered the skill.
✓   Your child is progressing but has not yet mastered the skill.
•    Your child is encountering a problem in this area of growth in learning.

1st–12th Grade

 

A+
98-100
C
72-77
A
92-97
C-
70-71
A-
90-91
D+
68-69
B+
88-89
D
62-67
B
82-87
D-
60-61
B-
80-81
F
0–59
C+
78-79
I
Incomplete


Art/French/Music/Physical Education


    

 

Grading Scale

Skill Level

 

O

Outstanding

+

Above average

S+

Above Average

Satisfactory

S

Satisfactory

-

Needs improvement

S-

Needs Improvement

N/A

Not applicable

U

Unsatisfactory

 

 


Grade Point Average (for office use)

 

A+

4.3

B

3.0

C-

1.7

A

4.0

B-

2.7

D+

1.3

A-

3.7

C+

2.3

D

1.0

B+

3.3

C

2.0

D-

0.7

 

 

 

 

F

0.0

I  (Incomplete)—Student has two weeks to make up the required work


Honors Grade Point Average (for office use)

A+

A

A-

B+

4.8

4.5

4.2

3.8

  B

  B-

  C+

  C

3.5

3.2

2.8

2.5

C-

D+

D

D-

2.2

1.8

1.5

1.2

Advanced Placement (AP) Grade Point Average (for office use)

A+

A

A-

B+

5.3

5.0

4.7

4.3

 B

 B-

 C+

 C

4.0

3.7

3.3

3.0

C-

D+

D

D-

2.7

2.3

2.0

1.7


Graduation Requirements and Course of Study/High School (9th–12th Grades)
A minimum of 25 credits is required for graduation.  The following credits must be achieved in the corresponding subjects to graduate:

Class
Credits
English Literature
4 credits
Social Studies
4 credits
Science (Lab is included)
3 credits
Mathematics
3 credits
Physical Education/Health
1.25 credits
Bible
4 credits
Foreign Language
2 credits
Fine Arts
1 credit
Electives
1.75 credits
Rhetoric
0.50 credit
Senior Thesis
0.50 credit

•    All students must carry a minimum of 6.25 credits each year.  Exceptions can be made for seniors if graduation requirements have been met (approval needed).
•    A failure in any required course must be made up in summer school before the next school term.

Guidance
Robinson Township Christian School provides academically challenging courses and equips students to further their education as God leads.  Academic records are audited annually to ensure that graduation requirements are being met and the faculty and staff are available for counseling and advice regarding college decisions.  In addition, the computer lab can be used to research colleges, scholarships and testing information.  The PSAT is given each October at the school for sophomores and juniors as per the guidelines established by College Board.com.

Homework
Teachers may assign homework to be accomplished outside of normal classroom periods.  It is given for various reasons, including to:
•    Help develop good study habits.
•    Reinforce material taught in class.
•    Prepare students for upcoming tests or quizzes.
•    Help the student beyond what is taught or read in class/to seek further or related materials.
    
When a student has been absent, it is the student’s responsibility (and that of the parents/guardians) to secure books and assignments in order to be ready to participate on the day the student returns to class.  Normally the student will be allowed two days to complete work after his/her return to school following an absence.

Honor Roll
The purpose of the Honor Roll is to give recognition to individual pupil academic progress in junior and senior high school.  To be eligible, a student must maintain an average in the following categories:
Honor Roll—All students with a 3.0 average on a 4.0 scale.  Eligible students must have all grades that are C and above.
High Honor Roll—All students with an average of 3.7 with all grades of a B- and above are eligible.

Parent-Teacher Communications—Elementary (K–6th Grades)
Parent/Teacher conferences are scheduled for parents/guardians after the first and third marking periods.  Teachers are also available to meet with parents/guardians throughout the school year, either before or after the school day.  Parents/Guardians may call the school office to schedule a conference.  Calls to teachers may be made between 8–8:20 a.m. and 3–3:30 p.m.

Parent-Teacher Communications—Junior & Senior High School

1.     Written Communications

a.     Progress reports sent quarterly for each student received a C- or below at the time of the report.

b.     Report cards four times per year

c.     Disciplinary notices in accordance with disciplinary policy

d.     Others at the discretion of teachers and parents/guardians

2.     Personal Meetings

a.     Back-to-School Night is held in August.  All families are expected to attend.

b.    Individual conferences as needed.  Parents/Guardians are encouraged to meet personally with teachers during the school year.

 Physical Education:  K–6th Grades
Students in kindergarten through 6th grades receive physical education once a week.  Early elementary students should wear gym attire to school.  Students are permitted to wear shorts on their designated gym day, provided the weather is appropriate.
    
Physical Education:  7th–12th Grades
Pennsylvania state law requires that students participate in a planned program of physical education each year.  In order to be exempted for an extended period, a doctor’s excuse is required.  This must be renewed every nine weeks.  

Be advised of the following:

1.     If your child is well enough to be in school, he/she will participate in P.E. (even if only minimally).

2.     Each student is allowed one excused absence with a parental written excuse.  After one excused absence in a nine-week period, the student will be required to turn in a two-page research paper for each class missed on a subject of the P.E. teacher’s choice, relating to physical education.  A student’s grade may be lowered each time he/she misses any additional P.E. classes in a nine-week period unless there is a doctor’s excuse.

3.     Please refrain from scheduling doctor and dentist appointments during P.E. time.  All classes, including P.E., take precedence over any after-school activities.  Students must remain in school all day. 

4.     All students will be required to go outside, except during inclement weather, which includes:

a.     Rain, sleet, or wet snow.

b.     Temperatures under 20°F.

5.     If you feel that your child should not go out due to the day’s weather, you must call the School before 10 a.m.  In that situation, the student will stay indoors for a calisthenics program.

6.     Appropriate gym attire for 7th–12th grade includes:

a.     Tennis shoes and socks.

b.     Loose-fitting gym shorts for warmer weather (see Dress Code requirements).

c.     Loose-fitting sweat/gym pants for cooler weather.

d.     T-shirt or sweat shirt.

e.     No jeans!

f.      Not having gym clothes is not a legitimate excuse for missing class!

 

Promotion and Retention
Parents/Guardians will be notified, in writing, of the consideration to retain their child in their current grade.  A conference with the parents/guardians will be scheduled at that time.  Parents/Guardians will be officially informed, in writing, by June 15 of the firm intention to retain the student.  

A high-school student failing either one or two of the basic subjects will be required to make these up at an accredited summer school before being promoted.  A student failing three or more of the basic subjects will not be promoted to the next grade level.

Special Services
Allegheny Intermediate Unit, Division of Non-Public Schools provides these free on-site services:
1.    Diagnostic/Evaluation services
2.    Speech therapy

Standardized Tests
Students in 1st–8th grade take the Iowa Test of Basic Skills Achievement Tests, or others as approved by the Board of Directors.

High school students may take part in standardized or nationally normed tests, such as the PSAT (offered at RTCS in the fall); the SAT, ACT, or PLAN (offered in the home school district); competency-based tests; reading; and intelligence tests.  In each case, parents/guardians are invited to discuss the results with teachers, and efforts are made to distribute information on the interpretation of the results.

Student Council
Robinson Township Christian School Student Council is composed of students in grades 7–12 and provides students an opportunity to develop and demonstrate responsible leadership.  The Council and selected Adult Advisor meet monthly to plan social, academic, and service activities for consideration.  The Council provides a forum to present student opinion and a place to promote school spirit.  Elections are held in the spring for Student Council officers (9th–12th grades) for the upcoming year.  In the fall, elections are held for class representatives.
•    Requirements for Student Council office:
−    Student’s attitude—overall and/or in specific areas
−    Impact student’s participation will have on grades and schoolwork
−    Student’s commitment to seeing tasks to completion
−    Student must have a GPA of 2.5 or higher at the time of election; student must maintain at least a 2.5 through his/her elected term

Study Hall
The purpose of a study hall is to supplement home study—that is, to give students an opportunity to:
•    Prepare for classes.
•    Complete unfinished assignments.
•    Seek aid or clarification in doubtful or confusing matters.
•    Use library resources.

A study hall should be a place conducive to individual study and concentration:
•    There should be a minimum of noise and disruption.
•    There should be a maximum of quiet, organized activity.

Students are expected to:
•    Practice courtesy, cooperation, and consideration for the needs of others.
•    Consider study hall time another class period and act accordingly.
•    Come to study hall prepared to utilize the time in a manner beneficial to their needs.
•    Bring necessary materials:  textbooks, workbooks, writing paper, pen/pencil, reading material.

Students should use study hall time to develop reading habits and broaden their interests by always bringing a book, magazine, or pamphlet with them in case they have a spare moment.

If there are no other assignments, students may not:
•    Talk without permission of the teacher.
•    Write notes.
•    Distract others by talking, gesturing, or walking about.

Textbooks, Property, and Facilities
Many of our textbooks are provided by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania under the provisions of Act 90/195.  Books provided under this Act are stamped on the inside front cover with PA Department of Education.  Textbooks purchased with state funds or by Robinson Township Christian School are on loan during the school year.  The student is responsible for any loss or damage of textbooks.

Fair compensation must be made for books that are lost or damaged.  All lost or damaged library books, textbooks, and equipment must be turned in or paid for at the end of the school year, before report cards will be handed out.  Compensation must be made for damage to any school or church property and equipment.

Vacations/Make-Up Work
Robinson Township Christian School encourages parents/guardians to refrain from planning vacations during school.  Parents/Guardians and students should understand the following:
•    The ease (or difficulty) of providing work in advance varies from grade to grade and subject to subject.  Parents/Guardians should make every effort to provide the teacher with no less than one week’s notice before the scheduled vacation; this enables the teacher to provide any work deemed appropriate.  It is the student’s responsibility to make up work as soon as possible when he/she returns to school.

Conduct and Discipline

Robinson Township Christian School is committed to providing a safe, orderly environment in which students may learn.  There is a relationship between discipline in a school and the quality of education offered by the school.  If students are undisciplined, their education suffers.  It is the responsibility of the school and the home to work together to ensure that students learn to obey.  Students who do not obey people in authority over them have trouble learning to obey God.  Required obedience is based upon the Bible.  God says that children should obey their parents and others in positions of authority.  The following texts emphasize this:
•    Children, obey your parents in all things, for this is well-pleasing unto the Lord (Colossians 3:20).
•    Obey them that have rule over you, and submit yourselves (Hebrews 13:17a).

Academic Probation
Students whose grade point average (GPA) is 1.7 or below will receive an academic warning.  Students whose GPA is 1.3 or below for one quarter or who have an F in two major subject areas (e.g., Bible, Math, Social Studies, Science, Language Arts) will be placed on academic probation.  Parents/Guardians will be notified by letter that their child has been placed on probation.  Students may lose extracurricular activities and course-elective privileges during the next quarter.  Continued academic and behavioral probation may lead to dismissal from the School.

Bus Procedure and Conduct
Busing is a service provided by your local school district not a service of RTCS.

With few exceptions, students of Robinson Township Christian School are transported by the school districts in which they reside.  Arrangements for transportation are made directly by the transportation director or bus contractor of the respective districts with information provided by the School.  The School does not determine times, stops, etc.  The following are important ideas to remember:
•    Every student is obliged to observe the rules of good conduct, courtesy, and safety aboard the busses and at the stops.
•    The School supports and cooperates with procedures defined by the school districts for dealing with bus misconduct.  Robinson Township Christian School may include suspension of bus privileges in severe cases.
•    Questions and complaints about bus service should be directed to the person in charge of student transportation in your school district.
•    Only students who are legal residents of the district may ride the busses of that district.  The districts are very strict on this because of insurance considerations.  The School cannot provide exemption to their policies.
•    Since the Supreme Court upheld the private school bus law, responsibility for your child’s transportation rests with your home school district.  Address all questions and complaints to them.  Reasonable service is your right.
•    If you do not require bus service due to an absence, or if you are providing transportation that day, you must call the school district transportation director or bus contractor.  Telephone numbers are provided in the RTCS School Directory.
•    Parents/Guardians of bussed students must inform the School office if they will be picking up their child (by 1 p.m on full days and 10 a.m. on half days.).  It is preferred that a note be sent to school so we can make the change on our daily transportation schedule.  Contact your school district transportation director or bus contractor if you are changing your child’s transportation in any way.


Causes for Disciplinary Action
At Robinson Township Christian School, the basic rule students must obey is to be respectful.  They must show respect to those in authority, to other students, to property of the School and other students, as well as to themselves.  In order to be respectful, students must also be kind and have self-control.  Students who do not show the proper respect will be disciplined.  Examples of behavior that is not acceptable include:
1.    Taking God’s name in vain, profanity, or vulgarity in speech or actions.
2.    Improper public display of affection.
3.    Possessing or using drugs, alcohol, or tobacco.
4.    Leaving the classroom or building without permission.
5.    Possession or use of dangerous items.
6.    Fighting.
7.    Verbal intimidation or harassment.
8.    Running in the school building.
9.    Chewing gum.
10.    Using skateboards, roller blades, etc, or unapproved electronic devices on school property.
11.    Disrespectful attitude, actions, or speech toward another person.
12.    Cheating or lying.
13.    Being late for class.
14.    Violating the dress code.

No list can include all possible situations.  This list is not exhaustive but provides general guidelines for acceptable behavior.  The administration has the final responsibility and authority to enforce the intent and spirit of the discipline policy.

Alcohol, Tobacco, Drug, and Weapons Policy
The possession and/or use of alcohol or tobacco will result in an automatic five-day suspension from school.  The possession and/or use of dangerous items or illegal drugs on school property will result in an automatic expulsion from school.

Disciplinary Measures
The classroom teacher is responsible for maintaining discipline within the classroom.  The teacher will review the rules at the beginning of the school year and will remind students as needed.  If a student does not obey the rules, the teacher will reprimand the student and punish him/her as appropriate.  Parents/Guardians will be contacted when a student does not respond to disciplinary measures.

If a student continues to disobey in the classroom or if the behavior is deemed dangerous to the student or others, the child will be sent to the Principal.
1.    On the first visit to the Principal, there will be verbal counseling with the Administrator.
2.    On the second visit, a written warning will be given that will require a parent’s/guardian’s signature.
3.    On the third visit, a second written warning or a suspension notice will be given.  The parent’s/guardian’s signature will again be required.  
4.    On the fourth visit, the student may be dismissed from school.

The discipline procedure is a guideline.  All disciplinary actions are at the discretion of the Principal.  It is very important that the home and School cooperate fully in the discipline of students.  Parents/Guardians should never undermine the authority of the School by making derogatory remarks about a teacher or the School in the presence of any students or any other parents/guardians.  To do so violates Scripture and tears down the credibility of the School and teacher.

Matthew 18 teaches Christians the proper way to handle disagreements.  Robinson Township Christian School uses this model as the method to resolve differences.  If a parent/guardian has a concern regarding his/her student, the first step is to talk with the teacher.  If the parent/guardian is not satisfied with the teacher’s resolution, he/she may take the matter to the Principal.  If there is still no resolution, then he/she may appeal to the Education Committee and lastly to the Board of Directors for final resolution.

Demerit Policy—Upper School Only

Demerits can be given by ANY teacher to a student for the following:
1.    Late arrival for class as determined by the classroom rules of the teacher
2.    Student is in the hallway during class time without a hall pass
3.    Student is in possession of a hall pass that indicates an excessive length of time outside the classroom without an explanation or teacher approval
4.    Disrespectful attitude or response to faculty
5.    Improper conversation, treatment, and/or physical contact with and between other students
6.    Dress code violations

Demerits are not for academic infractions.  Those are to be handled through the grading system and/or after school detentions.

Demerit Accumulation:
1.    Every 3 demerits will result in a lunch time detention.
2.    Demerits will accumulate during each week and but will reset to zero at the end of each week.
3.    After 3 lunch detentions, the student will be required to serve an after school detention.  Accumulation of lunch detentions will reset at the end of each marking period.
4.    Demerits will not be communicated to parents until they result in a detention.
5.    All detentions (lunch and after school) will be communicated to parents.   

Detention, Suspension, and Expulsion
1.    Detention will be served after school from 3:15 p.m. to 4 p.m. with a faculty member on a chosen date.  The student has two weeks to make the proper arrangements.  All detentions will be documented in the School office.
2.    During an in-school suspension, students will sit alone in the office.  They will receive zeros for all grades during the period of suspension.
3.    During an out-of-school suspension, students are not permitted on school grounds, nor are they permitted to participate in school activities.  Students will receive zeros for all grades during the period of suspension.  Parents/Guardians will be notified by phone as soon as suspension is levied.  A written notice will be sent to confirm the suspension.  Students will not be readmitted until the parent/guardian arranges a time to meet with the Principal and/or Discipline Committee.
4.    The Discipline Committee may recommend expulsion when:
•    The health, safety, and welfare of other students/ staff are endangered.
•    Behavior interferes with the learning of other students or disrupts the overall educational process.
•    The student has violated a behavioral contract in which expulsion was an agreed-upon consequence.
•    The student is incorrigible and unwilling to modify serious or chronic misbehaviors.

Expulsion will be levied only after a hearing of all facts and circumstances and after parents/guardians have been informed of the situation.

A student with a history of disciplinary problems that resulted in that student’s removal from the School may return to RTCS upon approval of the Education Committee and the Board of Directors.  Should the student return, his/her acceptance will be deemed probationary.  If the student exhibits the behavioral problems that led to his/her initial dismissal, the traditional progressive disciplinary guidelines will be bypassed, and more severe penalties—up to and including expulsion—will be considered earlier in the process, at the discretion of the Principal and/or Education Committee.

Electronic Device Policy
The use of Electronic Devices for school work, including laptops and graphing calculators, is a privilege and inappropriate use will result in the cancellation of those privileges.  Violation of this policy will also result in disciplinary action.

Use of cell phones and other devices not essential to daily academic functions, will only be permitted before and after school, or with teacher permission.  In addition, each student should show courtesy to coaches and directors and ask permission before using such devices during extracurricular activities.

Harassment and Bullying Policy
RTCS intends to provide all enrolled students, in every grade, an environment that is free of offensive behavior.  Conduct, whether intentional or unintentional, that subjects another person to unwanted attention, or to comments or actions because of race, national origin, age, gender, physical characteristics, or disability robs the person of dignity and is not permitted.  Any student who is verbally or physically abusive or disrespectful of any other student or person will be subject to corrective action and discipline, possibly including suspension or expulsion.

Internet Use
The Internet provides enormous potential, both as a tool for teaching and support for learners.  Robinson Township Christian School, to the extent possible, has taken precautions to restrict access to educationally inappropriate curriculum materials via the Internet.  Although Internet access brings many benefits to the School, there are a number of issues relating to acceptable use that are addressed in our School’s Internet Usage Policy.  The Policy must be signed by all those who will use the School’s equipment before being given access to the Internet.  (The Internet Policy was given in packets to upper school students on Back-to-School Night.)


Internet Terms and Conditions

1.     Acceptable Use - The purpose of the Internet at RTCS is to support research and education.  Therefore, the use of the Internet must be in support of education and research and consistent with the educational objective of RTCS.  Any use of the School’s computer resources to transmit, download, upload, or duplicate any copyrighted materials (including, but not limited to, software, publications, and graphics) or materials protected by applicable copyright laws is prohibited.  Use of another organization’s network or computing resources must comply with the rules appropriate for that network.  Transmission of any material in violation of any U.S. or state regulation is prohibited.  Users will not transmit, download, upload, duplicate, or create any threatening or obscene materials, which are intended to embarrass, harass, or dispute the educational and Christian environment of the School.  Use of the system for commercial solicitation is prohibited.  Users will not purchase items via the Internet or subscribe to commercial services, such as bulletin boards or chat groups, without prior approval from their parent/ guardian and the School.  Users (or parents/guardians for those under 18) will be responsible for all charges due for such purchases.  Use for product advertisement or public lobbying is also prohibited.

2.     Privileges - The use of the Internet is a privilege—not a right—and inappropriate use will result in the cancellation of those privileges.  Each student who receives access will be held responsible for usage.  The Administration or its designee will deem what is appropriate use, and its decision is final.

3.     Network Guidelines - Users are expected to abide by the generally accepted rules of network etiquette.  These include, but are not limited to, the following:

a.     Be polite.  Do not get abusive in your messages to others.

b.     Use appropriate language.  Do not swear, use vulgarities or any other inappropriate language.  Illegal activities are strictly forbidden.

c.     Users should not reveal personal addresses, phone numbers, or social security numbers.

d.     Users should not use the Internet to intentionally obtain or modify files, passwords, and data belonging to others.

e.     Electronic mail and other materials created by the user are not private.  Users have no expectation of privacy for any materials created, copied, downloaded, or accessed by the user on the workstation, including hard copies of such materials.  The Administration has access to all materials on the system, including e-mail.

f.      Do not use the network in such a way that would disrupt the use of the network by other users.

g.     All communications and information accessible via the Internet must be assumed to be the private property of the author and must be properly documented.

h.     Users should not load or use unauthorized games, programs, files, or other electronic media.

i.      Users should not destroy, modify, or abuse the network hardware and software.

j.      Users should not create links to other networks whose content or purpose would violate these guidelines.

k.     Users should not use the network for non-work or non-school-related work.

4.     Warranties - RTCS makes no warranties of any kind, whether expressed or implied, for the service it is providing.  RTCS will not be responsible for any damages suffered.  This includes the loss of data resulting from delays, non-deliveries, missed deliveries, or service interruptions caused by its own negligence or a user’s error or omissions.  Use of any information obtained via the Internet is at the user’s own risk.  RTCS specifically denies any responsibility of the accuracy or quality of information obtained through its services.

5.     Security - Security on any computer is a high priority, especially when the system involves many users.  If a user can identify a security problem on the Internet, he or she must notify the Administrator or his/ her designee.  He/She may not demonstrate the problem to other users.  Attempts to log into the computer, network, or Internet as a system administrator or under a username other than the one given to the student will result in cancellation of user privileges or disciplinary action.  Any user identified as a security risk or having a history of problems with other computer systems may be denied access to the Internet.

6.     Vandalism - Vandalism will result in cancellation of the School’s computer privileges and/or disciplinary action.  Vandalism is defined as any malicious attempt to harm or destroy data of another user, the Internet, and/or other networks that are connected to the Internet.  This includes, but is not limited to, the intentional uploading or creation of computer viruses, or any illegal or improper use of the Internet or accessed equipment.

7.     Responsibility for Reporting Materials - Each user of the School’s computer networking resources has a responsibility to report threatening or obscene materials, expressions of racism or hate, or other materials.  The School has the right to delete, read, or take other appropriate action with regard to such materials reported or discovered on the user’s workstation.

References

The Use of the Internet in Schools.  The National Association of Head Teachers.  1998.
Acceptable Use of the Internet, Including Local, Intranet, and Internet Computer Networks for Board Members, Staff, Students and Other Users in the School District of Pittsburgh.  Pittsburgh City Schools.  1998.
Internet Usage Policy.  West Islip Public Schools.  2002.
Association of Coordinators and Teachers of Internet Technology.

Personal Items
If a student is suspected of possessing items that are banned from use on School property, the following guidelines may be applied:  
1.    The Administrator or faculty member has the right to investigate a student’s locker or book bag while the student is present.
2.    The Administrator or faculty member has the primary role of seizing banned materials and will take precautions not to deliberately involve other students.

Sexual Harassment Policy
Robinson Township Christian School is committed to maintaining an academic environment where all individuals treat one another with dignity and respect and that is free from all forms of intimidation, exploitation, and harassment, including sexual harassment.  RTCS is prepared to take action to prevent and correct any violations of this policy.  Anyone who violates this policy will be subject to discipline, up to and including termination or expulsion.

Definition of Sexual Harassment
Sexual harassment:  unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal, visual, or physical conduct of a sexual nature, made by someone in the work or educational setting, under any of the following conditions:
1.    Submission to the conduct is explicitly or implicitly made a term or condition of an individual’s academic status or progress.
2.    Submission to, or rejection of, the conduct by the individual is used as the basis of academic decisions affecting the individual.
3.    The conduct has the purpose or effect of having a negative impact upon the individual’s academic performance, or of creating an intimidating, hostile, or offensive educational environment.
4.    Submission to, or rejection of, the conduct by the individual is used as the basis for any decision affecting the individual regarding benefits and services, honors, programs, or activities available at or through the School.


Examples of Harassment
Unwelcome conduct of this type includes a wide range of verbal, visual, or physical conduct of a sexual nature.  Among the types of conduct that would violate this policy include:
1.    Unwanted sexual advances or proposition.
2.    Offering academic benefits in exchange for sexual favors.
3.    Making or threatening reprisals after a negative response to sexual advances.
4.    Visual conduct such as leering, making sexual gestures, displaying sexually suggestive objects or pictures, cartoons or posters.
5.    Verbal conduct such as making or using derogatory comments, epithets, slurs, and jokes.
6.    Verbal abuse of a sexual nature, graphic verbal commentaries about an individual’s body, sexually degrading words to describe an individual, suggestive or obscene letters, notes, or invitations.
7.    Physical conduct such as touching, assaulting, impeding, or blocking movements.
8.    All forms of sexual harassment are prohibited including student to student; employee to student and student to employee.

What to Do If You Experience or Observe Harassment
Students who feel that they have been subjected to conduct of a harassing nature are encouraged to promptly report the matter to one of the following school officials.  Students who observe conduct of a sexually harassing nature are also encouraged to report the matter to one of the school officials listed below.  All complaints will be promptly investigated.

Where to Report Harassment
The following individuals are specifically authorized to receive complaints and respond to questions regarding harassment:

·       Mr. Bryan Campbell, President and Supervising Principal: 412-787-5919

·       Mrs. Kathleen Struble, Vice President and Education Committee Chairperson: 412-443-9897


Confidentiality
Every effort will be made to protect the privacy of the parties involved in any complaint; however, the School reserves the right to fully investigate every complaint and to notify a student’s parent/guardian and appropriate government officials as the circumstances warrant.

Protection Against Retaliation
It is against the School’s policy to discriminate or retaliate against any person who has filed a complaint concerning sexual harassment or has testified, assisted, or participated in any manner in any investigation proceeding or hearing concerning sexual harassment.

Procedure for Investigation of the Complaint and for Taking Corrective Action
When one of the School officials designated in this policy receives a complaint, he or she shall immediately inform the Administrator.  The Administrator will direct an investigation.  If the investigation confirms the allegations, prompt corrective actions shall be taken.  The individual who suffered the harassing conduct shall be informed of the corrective action taken.  

In addition, any employee or student found to be responsible for sexual harassment in violation of this policy will be subjected to appropriate disciplinary action up to and including expulsion or termination.  The severity of the disciplinary action will be based upon the circumstances of the infraction.

Student Violence—Part I
Our goal is to promote a Christian environment in the School.  Nonetheless, due to the fallen nature of humanity, students will frequently tease other students.  There is a clear spiritual concern that students learn to cultivate the fruits of the Spirit through daily modeling of Christ-like behavior.  Through the educational process, the School will emphasize the importance of acting Christianly toward others.  However, when a student does not respond to a positive Christian environment, the School Administration will take a proactive stance.

The School Administration seeks to provide a safe environment that requires not only the elimination of threats of violence or weapons but also requires respect and support for all of the School’s codes of conduct.  If the School Administration is aware of a student who, through teasing, intimidation, or bullying, is creating emotional duress or an unsafe environment for other students, the Administration will investigate and determine what actions will occur as a result of the student’s behavior.  Examples of inappropriate behavior include, but are not limited to, utilizing habitually cruel or overbearing comments, spreading rumors, mocking, malicious teasing, or encouraging exclusion.  The Administration will examine the level of maturity of the student and whether or not he/she is capable of understanding the significance of his/her behavior and decide upon appropriate discipline.

Student Violence—Part II
Parents/Guardians should understand that the School’s first responsibility is the protection of all of its students.  The School takes this responsibility seriously.  Therefore, if a student brings a weapon to school or to a school function, or has a weapon on his/her person, the School Administration will immediately expel the student.  Parents/Guardians are advised that the Administration will contact local police or appropriate authorities and will note in the student’s permanent record that he/she was expelled for possession of a weapon on school premises or at a school function.  Possession includes, but is not limited to, having a weapon in a locker, book bag, purse, or vehicle.  (See Weapons Policy for further descriptions.)

If the School determines that a threat of violence is credible and specific (directed toward particular students or staff), the Administration will report the threat to the Parent/Guardian of the student and, where appropriate, the student and/or staff member threatened.  The School will also report the threat to appropriate authorities.  Students making such threats will be expelled.  For purposes of this policy, credible means a reasonable belief or suspicion, determined at the sole discretion of the Administration, that the threat might be genuine and that the student might be capable of carrying out the threat of violence.

In those circumstances in which the School determines that the threat is likely not credible, the School Administration will suspend the student, pending a parent meeting.  These include all cases in which the student was “just joking.”  If circumstances warrant, the School may conduct further investigation.  The School may require students in this circumstance to obtain counseling, at family expense, from a Christian counselor or other professional agreeable to the School.  No student will be permitted to continue enrollment in the School until the School Board is satisfied that the student poses no credible threat to others in the School.  

Weapons Policy
No weapon may be brought onto school property, including, but not limited to, the school building, outdoor areas, outdoor facilities, school busses, or any school-related activity.  A weapon shall include, but not be limited to, any knife, toy knife, cutting instrument, cutting tool, nun-chuck stick, firearm, rifle, toy guns, or any other tool, instrument, or implement capable of inflicting bodily injury, which is possessed under circumstances not manifestly appropriate for the lawful uses that it might have.  This includes firearms that are not loaded or lack a clip or other component to render it immediately operable.  A person in possession of a weapon on school property violates state criminal statutes and school regulations (18 PA Cons. Stat 912) and shall be subject to the following discipline and penalty:
1.    Parents/Guardians will be immediately notified.
2.    The local police will be called.
3.    The student will be expelled.

Exceptions for costume day, drama events, or reenactments must be approved by the Administration.

General Information

Admissions Policy
As a private, religious institution, Robinson Township Christian School (“RTCS”) reserves the right to admit or deny admissions to any student, for any reason not otherwise prohibit by law.  All decisions on admission are reserve exclusively to the Board of Directors.
RTCS does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, gender, national or ethnic origin. By way of General Policy, the Board of Director will endeavor to follow, but is not bound, by the following directives.

Philosophy

The enrollment in RTCS should consist primarily of covenant children from homes of Reformed persuasion. However, children from homes committed to the Christian faith on of an evangelical basis will be considered for acceptance. Parents will be informed of the Reformed character of the school and of its teaching and that no concessions can be made to forms of thinking not in harmony with that character. Children from non-Christian homes may be admitted to RTCS if their parents consent to the school’s teaching of Christian truth and provided their presence is not a detriment to the school.

The Board of Directors specifically reserves its right to deny admission to children of families that are directly hostile to the core tenants of the Christian faith, per the Westminster Confession of Faith, as determined by the Board of Directors.

The Board of Directors specifically reserves its right to deny admission to children of families that that do not conform to the Biblical-ordained family structure, as set forth in the Bible.

Order of Admission

Should potential students otherwise meet the qualifications for admission, but space may be limited in the particular class, or the school in general, students may be admitted in the following order:
1.    Existing students who reenroll within the stated reenrollment period will be given first priority.
2.    Existing students who fail to reenroll within the stated reenrollment period will either be enrolled in the requested class or placed on a waiting list in the order that their registration is received.
3.    Siblings of existing students will take priority over new applicants if their name has been added to the reenrollment form during the stated reenrollment period.
4.    Siblings of existing students who choose to register after the reenrollment period for existing students has closed will be considered new applicants and will either be enrolled in the requested class or placed on the waiting list in the order that their application has been received.
5.    New applicants will be interviewed and tested in the order that their application has been received.
6.    Students who have previously attended RTCS and who have withdrawn or not been invited to return because of documented academic difficulties, behavior problems, or lack of parental support, may be declined the opportunity to re-enroll by the administration.

Currently enrolled students should be given priority in re-enrollment with a deadline of one month after re-enrollment invitations are issued. After that date enrollment will necessarily default to a first come, first serve basis in order to give timely responses to those enrolling.

Admission Process

Admission tests shall be administered for all new students in grades 1-8.  Furthermore, the admission process will include an interview with parents or guardians, review of the most current report card and review of any standardized testing that is available.  All Kindergarten applicants will be given a readiness test.  

Students in grades 7-12 will be invited to visit the School to shadow a student for a day and interview with the Principal.
 
Students are admitted to the school by the Board of Directors based on recommendations from the Education Committee and the Principal. This process must be accomplished before the Board of Directors may vote, and the Board’s vote is necessary before the student may begin attending RTCS.

Admission Requirements—Age
Admission to kindergarten and 1st grade requires that the student be five or six years of age, respectively, by September 1 of that academic year.  However, exceptional cases will be evaluated on an individual basis.  Parents or Guardians should contact the Principal and request that their child enter kindergarten or 1st grade before he / she meets the age requirement.  The school Health Immunization Regulation known as Article 10 (1983) requires that the immunization status of every child is to be ascertained before admission to school or continued attendance at school.
Admission Requirements—Dates
All new students must enroll for the current school year by the following dates:
K-8--the last day of the third nine weeks,
9-11--beginning of the second semester,
12--beginning of the school year.

Exceptions will be made for families moving into the area or for other extenuating circumstances.
Admission Requirements--Home Schooled Students
When students return or enter RTCS after home schooling, the following procedures will be followed:
1.    Placement will be determined by RTCS personnel on the basis of the student’s age and/or the student’s performance on an accepted nationally recognized test administered by an independent educational body.
2.    Any high school credits granted under home schooling will have no grade attached and will be listed on the student’s transcript as “home schooling”;
A minimum of 4.5 credits must be completed as a full-time student in the senior year at RTCS before a degree may be granted.

Delinquent Tuition
If we are aware of funds owed to another school, we will not enroll a student at RTCS until such time as funds are paid.

Invitation to Return
The faculty, in consultation with the Principal, shall determine students who will be invited to return to RTCS the following year.  It is also a time when some students are either recommended to be placed on probation for the remainder of the academic year or recommended not to return to RTCS after school closes in June.

The following guidelines will be used to determine if a student should return:
•    Academic performance
•    A cooperative spirit with regard to personal conduct
•    Constructive attitudes toward the School and what it seeks to accomplish
•    Emotional stability
•    Preparedness for the next level of work
•    Respect for authority
•    Obedience

If a student shows a consistent lack of interest in his / her work or an unwillingness to cooperate with staff, he / she may be refused reenrollment.  In some cases, the student may be allowed to reenroll provisionally.  Provisional reenrollment means that the student will be dismissed immediately and permanently if the problem is not resolved.

Cell Phone Usage
Students may bring cell phones to school, but they must be kept off at all times during school hours, which are 8:20 a.m. to 2:55 p.m.  Students may not make or receive cell phone calls, or send/receive text messages during school hours unless otherwise permitted by a teacher or staff.  Cell phone usage is, however, permitted during school-sponsored activities after school, and is left up to the discretion of the coach or adult in charge.

Clearances
Due to laws passed in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, volunteers who work with students must pass the required Pennsylvania Child Abuse History Clearance and the PA State Criminal History Report, and have registered copies of the clearances with the office. Any fees charged are to be paid by the volunteer.

Devotional Meetings
K–6th grades:  Devotional meetings will be held weekly and led by teachers.

7th–12th grades:  Weekly devotional meetings will be held and led by a teacher and student team.  Students should bring their Bible to devotional meetings.

Dress Code
Dress is primarily the responsibility of the parent(s)/guardians(s)—the School bears the responsibility to establish standards in keeping with good taste and modesty.  Because these standards are relative, the judgment of the staff of the School, and particularly the Administrator, will be used to ensure that the improper grooming of a student does not reflect negatively upon the image of RTCS and does not influence negatively the attitude of any student toward him/herself as an image-bearer of God, toward other students, or toward those in authority over him/her.

RTCS has established the following dress code for the benefit of the students.  It is designed to promote diligence in their calling as students and to ensure modesty in their personal demeanor.  The dress code is not intended to be exhaustive.  Rather, the items listed are examples of what is appropriate or inappropriate during school hours and at all RTCS school functions.

The dress code applies to all RTCS school functions.

Examples of Appropriate and Inappropriate Clothing

•    Girls—Appropriate
Dresses, skirts, capris, dress pants, denim jeans in good condition (no patches or holes), and modest tops. All clothing must be loose fitting.  No low-cut blouses or tops are permitted.  Blouses or shirts must have sleeves, be worn buttoned, and be sized to completely cover the waistline at all times (flesh should not be exposed when arms are raised above the head).  Hemlines must be no shorter than three-four inches above the knee.  Shorts, which may be worn on gym day only, must be no shorter than five-six inches above the knee and must be modest in style.

•    Girls—Inappropriate
Army fatigues, tight-fitting stretch pants, yoga pants, low-riding pants, sweatpants, tops that show some or all of bare shoulders or midriff, excessive piercing, tattoos, clothing with writing or graphics of pop music/video culture, ripped seams, distressed jeans, or tattered clothing, hats, visors, and/or head bandannas.

•    Boys—Appropriate
Dress or casual pants, denim jeans in good condition (no patches or holes), shorts on gym day only, button-up shirts, dress T-shirts in good condition.  Belts should be worn when needed.

•    Boys—Inappropriate
Army fatigues, sweat pants, cut-off tops, muscle shirts, excessive chains, piercings or tattoos, oversized pants, ripped seams, distressed jeans, or tattered clothing, visible undergarments, clothing with writing or graphics of pop music/video culture, hats, bandannas, or visors.

•    Kindergarten Students
Students should be dressed in comfortable clothing.  Playwear and fleecewear are acceptable.  Shorts are permitted on gym day.

A Special Note to Preteen/Teen Girls and Their Parent(s)/Guardian(s)
Endeavor at all times to dress modestly, avoiding clothing that is too little, too tight, or too flirtatious.  Rather, strive to cultivate godliness and inward beauty: “The unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit which is of great worth in God’s sight” (I Peter 3:4). 1

Goal
In the area of proper dress and general appearance of students, we seek to determine a standard that will reflect favorably on the Christian nature of our school and that will be acceptable in the eyes of our parents.  The goal of the dress code is not to be restrictive but to help maintain a positive witness and a good learning environment.  Decisions are at times subjective, but the Administrators will make the final decision.


Violation of Dress Code
If a student violates the dress code, he or she may be given a replacement garment if applicable or asked to remove headwear or piercings. Demerits will be issued and parents will be contacted as to the reason.

At the Principal’s discretion, a student may not be permitted to attend classes until suitable clothing is delivered by the parent(s)/guardian(s).

1 Harris, J. “Boy Meets Girl.” 2000,  Multnomah: Sisters, Oregon.
   Wilson, D. “Modest Daughters.” 2002, Credenda Agenda, Vol. 13.


Electronic Device Usage
Electronic devices are not to be used during school hours of 8:20 a.m. to 2:55 p.m., and students are discouraged from bringing them.  If brought to school, such items must remain turned off.

Extracurricular Activities Eligibility Policy

Academic Eligibility
All students must be declared eligible for athletics or fine arts programs at the beginning of each quarter.  In cases where a student’s work in any preceding quarter does not meet the standards provided for in this policy, the student shall be ineligible to participate in the activities for the first four weeks of the next grading period.  A student may be accepted into the program(s) on a provisional basis.

New students must meet academic eligibility requirements.  Students who are enrolled for the first time must comply with the requirements of the academic eligibility rules.  The standard required for the preceding quarter shall be obtained from the records of the last school attended.

The standard for eligibility is at least a 2.0 cumulative GPA in all core courses (classes that meet at least three periods per week), with no F’s and no more than two D’s.  Grades will be checked biweekly during the quarter to be sure students are maintaining a 2.0 GPA or higher.  Students can be placed on suspension at the time of biweekly checks.  Students on academic suspension will have their grades checked weekly.  If they have raised their GPA to a 2.0, they will be reinstated.

A student who has been absent from school during the semester for a total of 20 or more school days shall not be eligible to participate in any athletic contest or performance until he/she has been in attendance for a total of 60 days following his 20th day of absence.

Conduct Eligibility
Students should understand and keep in mind that being selected to represent their school in an interscholastic activity is a privilege.  Parents/Guardians and students are required to attend any mandatory meetings to review practice/rehearsal policies, schedules, and eligibility rules.

A student who has received an academic or behavioral suspension may not participate in interscholastic activities and/or attend practice/rehearsal during the period of suspension.  

Athletes should abide by all school regulations and maintain proper sportsmanlike conduct.  Failure to abide by school regulations or engaging in unsportsmanlike conduct will result in suspension from the athletic activity.

Day of Game/Performance Procedures
All student participants are required to attend school a full day on the day of the event unless previous arrangements have been made with the Principal.  This policy applies to all extracurricular activities.

Fees
An athletic fee must be paid before the start of the season.  A drama fee must be paid before the start of rehearsals.

Insurance and Medical Eligibility
It is the policy of the School that no student will be permitted to engage in any competitive or interscholastic sports without first securing insurance.  In order for students to participate in the RTCS athletic program, the following forms must be up to date and on file in the office:
•    Permission and Indemnification Form
•    Physician’s Athletic Examination Report for Competitive Sports
•    Athletic Medical Questionnaire
•    Athletic Permission Form

Parent Meetings
1.    Parent meetings will be held at the beginning of each sports or drama season.
2.    The Athletic Director and Coach will attend the sports meetings.
3.    The RTCS Drama Association (RDA) President and Director(s) will attend the drama meetings.
4.    Parents will be informed of all school and team rules and policies (including the eligibility policy).
5.    Parents will be given copies of all rules and policies.
6.    Parents will sign a commitment of support of policies.
7.    Parents who do not attend the meeting will receive the materials through their student.  Their child may not participate until their signed commitment form is returned.

Travel to and from Sports Competitions
Parents/Guardians are required to annually sign the Parent Permission and Indemnification Form that provides permission for students to compete in sports activities at RTCS and off campus, travel to and from sport competitions, and attend competitions requiring lodging away from home.

Health Regulations and Services
The School provides only basic first aid in case of an accident.  For minor bruises and scrapes, an office staff member or school volunteer will cleanse the wound and apply a bandage.

Students taking any type of medication must bring a note from home giving them permission to take it.  The proper dosage should be sent in a container with the child’s name on it and be one that the child can open.  (See Medication Policy.)

The Montour School District provides a nurse who comes once a week to RTCS in compliance with Pennsylvania School Law.  She makes sure our medical records are complete and up to date, and conducts the screening programs.  Pennsylvania School Law requires that each child have:

•    A physical exam in grades K, 6, and 11.
•    A dental exam in grades K, 3, and 7.
•    A tuberculin test in grades K and 1.

It is recommended that you have your own physician conduct these tests.  A screening program is used to identify children who might need further medical or dental attention.  The screening program includes:
•    A vision test every year for every child.
•    A hearing test for every child in K, 3, 7.
•    A scoliosis test for grades 5–8.  
•    Parents should assist in maintaining good health by:
1.    Providing proper meals at regular times, especially a full breakfast.
2.    Ensuring regular bedtime.
3.    Enforcing proper dress according to weather conditions.
4.    Keeping a student home if affected by a bad cold, swollen glands, inflamed eyes, and/or fever within the last
24 hours and/or nausea and vomiting during the previous night.

The required number of days to keep your child home after contracting a contagious disease is:
•    Chicken Pox—Exclude from school until all sores are crusted, approximately six days from last crop
of vesicles.
•    Conjunctivitis (Pink Eye)—Exclude until student is on treatment for 24 hours.
•    Impetigo—Exclude until adequately treated and there is no drainage from sore.
•    Strep Throat—Exclude until student is on treatment for 24 hours.  Keep your child at home until you have the results of the throat culture (unless your child is on medication for 24 hours).
•    Lice—Exclude until checked by the school nurse.

Library Policy
1.    Elementary students will visit the library each week and check out two books for one week.  Kindergarten and grades 1 and 2 will be read a story each week.
2.    Students are expected to behave in a quiet, orderly fashion while in the library.  Those who are not willing to do so will be sent back to their classroom and disciplined as their teacher sees fit.
3.    Overdue books:
•    If a student forgets to return his/her books on library day, he/she may check out one book for the
next week.
•    If a student has three overdue books, he/she may not check out any more books until the overdue books are returned.
•    If a student has any book that is two weeks overdue, he/she may not take out any more books until it is returned.
1.    Damaged books:
•    A damaged book must be paid for before any more books can be checked out of the library.
•    Upon paying for the damaged book, the student may keep the book.
•    At the end of the grading period, all fines for damaged books must be paid before a report card will be given to the student.

1.    Lost books:
•    A student must pay for a book he/she has lost.
•    If the lost book is found after he/she has paid for it, money will be returned as long as a replacement book has not yet been purchased.
•    Lost books must be paid for before a report card will be issued.
•    If a family cannot afford to pay for a lost or damaged book, the student will not receive his/her
report card.
6.    Encyclopedias may be checked out for one week only.  They must be checked out from the librarian, and they must remain inside the school building.  
7.    A student may reserve a book.  He/She will be notified when it is available.

Lockers
Junior and senior high students will be provided a locker for storing books, lunches, jackets, and gym clothes.  Food should not be stored overnight in lockers.  Valuable items should never be kept there.  The School is not responsible for any lost, stolen, or damaged articles under any circumstances.  Nothing is to be kept on top of the lockers.  Valued items that must be brought to school should be kept with the student.

The School retains the right to check the contents of lockers periodically.  Students are not permitted to switch lockers once they are assigned.  No student is to use another’s locker for any reason.  No student is to go into another’s locker unless the student is present.  Any pilfering is to be reported immediately.  

Lost and Found
Throughout the school year, items left on school property will be placed in the “Lost and Found,” which is located across from the Finance Office.  All clothing and other items left unclaimed will be donated to charity.  Consequently, parents are encouraged to label all items belonging to their child.

Lunch
Students are to bring a bag lunch and personal eating utensils to school Monday–Thursday.  The lunch must be ready to eat.  A microwave is not available to heat lunches.  Individual cartons of white milk, chocolate milk and lemonade are available daily for 30¢ (price is subject to change).

An optional hot lunch is offered to all students (1st–12th grade) every Friday.  Students must order their hot lunch on Monday during homeroom.  The lunch fee of $4.00 (price is subject to change) is due on Friday.

Lunchroom Conduct
Remember, eating lunch in the lunchroom is a privilege!
1.    Students must request permission to leave their seats.
2.    Students may not waste or trade food.
3.    Students may not play with food or make a mess with food.
4.    Students must remain seated until dismissed by their teacher.
5.    Students must properly clean up after themselves.
6.    Respectful and edifying behavior is expected of every student.
7.    Lunchroom helpers should ask permission before leaving.
8.    The microwave is not available for student use.
9.    Students are not permitted past the double doors into the church wing without adult permission.

Medication Policy
Medication should be given at home whenever possible, and physicians should be asked to change the schedule for the administration of medication so that it can be given before and after school hours.   However, when medication must be administered during school hours in an emergency situation, a definite procedure for administering and storing medication is required to prevent mistakes and to avoid potential liability for the School and school personnel.

Procedures for Implementing the Medication Policy
1.    A secure location is set up for storage of the medication.  Students are never given access to this location.
1.    The medication should be delivered to the School by the parent/guardian or other responsible adult along with a physician’s written request for distribution by school personnel.  Medication brought to School must be in a container labeled by a pharmacist or doctor.  The label must include the student’s name, physician’s name, date of prescription, dosage, and frequency of administration.
2.    Parents must sign an Indemnity Agreement and return it to the School office. A record book will be maintained indicating the student’s name, name of the medication, the date and time of distribution, and the identity of the person dispensing medication.  This record must be marked every time medication is dispensed.
3.    Only those medications that absolutely must be administered during School hours should be brought to School for distribution by School personnel.

Nonprescription Medication
1.    The School will not dispense nonprescription medicine, even with a parent’s permission, with the exception of cough drops or throat lozenges.
2.    If a student has a recurring need for a nonprescription medication, such as antacids, Tylenol, allergy medication, etc., a parent may make it available for the student’s self-administration.  In this case, the above items (#1–6) apply.
3.    Students must not carry medication of any kind, prescription or nonprescription.  Possible exceptions are pocket-sized inhalers; in such a case, the office should be made aware of the student’s condition.  Violation of this policy is subject to disciplinary action.

Parental/Student Concerns
In the running of any school, problems and misunderstandings arise.  God has given us the following extremely successful and systematic way of solving human relationship problems.  
If your brother sins against you, go and show him his fault, just between the two of you.  If he listens to you, you have won your brother over.  But if he will not listen, take one or two others along, so that every matter may be established by the testimony of two or three witnesses.  For where two or three come together in my name, there I am with them  
(Matthew 18:15–16, 20).

Student/Parents to Teacher
1.    All educational questions or insights must first be presented to the teacher by the parents/guardians, or if the student is mature enough, by the student with the parent’s/guardian’s knowledge and consent.  If the student presents the question, a respectful demeanor is required at all times.
2.    The Principal should be contacted only if satisfactory answers, responses, or solutions are not achieved through this means.
3.    The Education Committee should be contacted only if satisfactory answers, responses, or solutions are not achieved through contact with the Principal.
4.    The RTCS School Board should be contacted if the above three measures have been exhausted.
5.    This procedure also applies to Board Members and staff who are acting in their capacity as parents/ guardians and not as representatives of the Board of Directors or as employees of RTCS.

Parents/Guardians to Principal
1.    If parents/guardians have a question or insight about the general operation of the School, they should contact the Principal.
2.    The Education Committee should be contacted only if satisfactory answers, responses, or solutions are not achieved through contact with the Principal.
3.    The RTCS School Board should be contacted only if satisfactory answers, responses, or solutions are not achieved through the above measures.
4.    This procedure also applies to Board Members and staff who are acting in their capacity as parents/ guardians and not as representatives of the Board of Directors or as employees of RTCS.

Matters of Discipline  
Refer to the Discipline Policy.

Parental Support
The primary responsibility for education rests upon the parents/guardians to whom children are entrusted by God.  RTCS functions as the parents’/guardians’ agent.

Our desire to operate as your agent requires full cooperation of parents/guardians.  This means ensuring that your child is getting the education that he/she needs.  Parental standards must be high.  Therefore, as minimal requirements, we expect the support of each parent/guardian in the following:
1.    Read this handbook and facilitate compliance.  Talk to your child(ren) about all areas that pertain to his/her responsibilities as a student at RTCS in terms he/she can understand.
2.    Ensure regular attendance.  Schedule vacations during school holidays.
3.    Arrive promptly every morning.  Late arrivals hinder your child’s progress and disturb the class.  
4.    Supervise homework.  Parents/Guardians must hold their children accountable in completing homework.
5.    Support disciplinary action.
6.    Promptly respond to school communication.  Return forms, permission slips, etc., as soon as possible.
7.    Promptly address any problems following the guidelines under Questions/Suggestions.
8.    Promptly pay tuition.
9.    Be willing to serve the School.  We rely upon parents/guardians to serve the School in a variety of ways.
10.    Participate in School functions.  The School needs your full support at School programs and open houses.  It is important that all students be able to participate in School programs.
11.    Promote the School.  Promoting the School in your community helps us greatly.    

Plagiarism1
Cheating is a growing problem in American schools, and Christian school students are not immune to the temptation to cheat.  One widespread form of cheating is plagiarism.  Essentially, plagiarism is taking the work of another person and presenting it as your own.  Thus, it involves both stealing (using another person’s work) and lying (pretending that it is your own).

Cheating of any kind is not tolerated at RTCS.  Therefore, to make the matter as clear as possible, the following are considered to be forms of plagiarism:
1.    Turning in someone else’s work and taking credit for it yourself (e.g., copying someone else’s homework).
2.    Copying words or ideas from someone else without giving that person proper credit (e.g., not putting
a quotation in quotation marks or not citing the source of the quotation).
3.    Changing words or phrases in a quotation without changing the sentence structure or the essential meaning, and not citing the source of the original quotation (paraphrasing without crediting the source is still plagiarism).
4.    Copying so many words and ideas from a source that it makes up the majority of your work, whether or not you credit the source.

Plagiarism is easy to avoid:  Do your own work, and acknowledge help that you have gotten from others.  If you are not sure about whether something needs to be cited or not, ask your teacher.  It is better to cite too much than not enough.

Being scrupulously honest about all things—including your school work—pleases God and sets you apart from many in the world to whom dishonesty has become a way of life.  Being honest is a way for us to be salt and light.1

1Author, Jonathan Stark

Private Vehicle Transportation
Students are not permitted to ride home in a personal vehicle with anyone other than their established driver unless a note is sent to school.  In case of an emergency, call the School office.

Recess
All students in grades 1–6 are required to go outside for recess except during inclement weather.  Students must have a written excuse from a physician in order to remain inside.

Inclement Weather Guidelines
•    Rain, sleet, and/or wet snow
•    Temperatures under 20°F

School Records
Student cumulative files are kept in the School office.  Information included in these permanent records is released to other educational or medical institutions with parental permission, providing that all financial obligations have been met.  The School Board has the final authority to release student records.  Each file contains:


1.    A record of all courses taken and grades received
2.    Attendance records
3.    All standardized test results
4.    Robinson Township Christian School entrance and admission information
5.    Any school correspondence that refers to the student
6.    A copy of discipline actions taken
7.    References and recommendations

School-Sponsored Events

General Rules  
The following will not be tolerated at School-sponsored events and are grounds for disciplinary action:
1.    The use of alcohol, tobacco, and/or drugs
2.    Improper public display of affection
3.    Possession or use of dangerous items
4.    Verbal intimidation or harassment
5.    Fighting
6.    Destruction, vandalism, or abuse of school property or the property of others
7.    Disrespectful attitude, actions, or speech toward another person(s)
8.    Leaving the School-sponsored event before checking out with chaperones

Additional Instructions
•    Parents/Guardians must provide transportation for students who do not have appropriate licensing to operate a motor vehicle in Pennsylvania.
•    Chaperones must keep track of guests as they arrive and monitor their departure.
•    School-sponsored events must have a staff member present for the duration of the event.
•    Chaperones are responsible for the behavior of students assigned to them.  If a chaperone is experiencing difficulties, report the problem immediately to the staff member who is in attendance.
•    If difficulties arise with a student, the parents/guardians will be called to escort him/her home from the event immediately.

Solicitation
Solicitation for non-school-related events and activities is not encouraged at Robinson Township Christian School.  Therefore, all requests for such solicitations must be reviewed by the Education Committee for appropriateness.  Approved requests will be limited to those that provide for the students’ extracurricular support (physical fitness activities, summer school, cultural events), typically provided by educational institutions but unavailable at RTCS.

Spring Formal
Students in grades 9–12 are invited to attend this annual event.  All guests must be in at least 9th grade to attend and must adhere to the code of conduct that is expected from RTCS students.  The time/date/locale will be at the discretion of the adult chaperones.

Student Volunteer Program—Junior and Senior High School

Students are encouraged to explore opportunities of Christian service from within their church, community, and school.  As a service to the student, the School will maintain a log for the student of evidenced hours.  The student’s efforts will be noted on his/her official transcript.  Students must complete a volunteer worksheet to accumulate his/her hours.  The worksheet can be turned in to the office at any time, and the data will be recorded.

Telephone
The office telephone is to be used for School business only.  Students and parents/guardians may use the telephone with permission.

Termination of Contract
If the contract is terminated at any time, there will be a $100 termination fee assessed.  In addition, if the contract is terminated more than 30 days and less than 90 days before the start of school, the fee will be 15% of the remaining tuition balance.  If the contract is terminated before school starts but less than 30 days before school starts, the additional fee will be 20% of the remaining tuition balance.  If the contract is terminated after school starts, the additional fee will be 30% of the remaining tuition balance.  All parties have the right to a written appeal to the RTCS Board of Directors within 10 days of withdrawal.

You also agree to pay all costs to RTCS and reasonable attorney’s fees if we have to bring legal action to collect fees, payments, and other charges.  You authorize us to make whatever inquiries necessary in the course of review or collection of any credit extended.

Tuition/Fees
Tuition payments are to be made in accordance with the amounts, dates, and conditions stipulated by the Enrollment Contract.  To receive the early payment discount, payment must be received by July 1.  No exceptions will be made for payments received beyond this date.  It is vital for the operation of the School that these payments are made promptly.  Failure to make prompt payment could result in the School’s withholding report cards and termination of your child’s enrollment.

Students will not be permitted to register or return for the following school year until all financial obligations have been met.

Report cards will not be distributed if an account has a delinquent tuition balance.  In the case of a graduating student, any outstanding tuition or charges must be paid before the student’s participation in final examinations, commencement ceremonies, or other culminating programs.  The School may withhold his/her diploma and transcript until final payment is received.

Additional fees for athletics or fine arts will be due from all students who participate in these activities throughout the year.  A materials fee is assessed for kindergarten and preschool.  A book fee is assessed for grades 1–12.  Entrance fees for field trips are charged for all grades.

Visitors
When classroom visits are desired, it is necessary to make arrangements through the School office in advance.  Visits should be for the purpose of observation.  Arrangements for teacher consultations can be made for another time.  No one should go to a child’s room without first checking in at the School office.
•    Visitors, upon arrival, should be presented to the Principal or his/her designee and sign in at the office.
•    Visitors must comply with all school rules.

Academic Visitors
1.    Students who may transfer to RTCS in the future are invited to shadow a current student.
2.    Scheduling is handled by Principal to accommodate present and future academic concerns.
3.    Teachers are notified before visit.
4.    An RTCS student serves as a host(ess).

Social Visitors
1.  RTCS host(ess) must obtain permission from the Principal at least two days before the visit.
2.  A form, to be initialed by each teacher who will be visited, will be given to the host(ess).

Volunteer Driver
The school often needs help in transporting students on field trips or for sports events.  Parents/guardians are required to complete a Volunteer Driver Application Form at the beginning of the school year if they wish to provide transportation to events.  The Principal will approve drivers based on insurance information and accident/ driver history.  The application is effective for one school year.

Classroom teachers will inform parents/guardians of transportation needs throughout the school year.  

Volunteer Programs*
We ask that all parents/guardians volunteer according to their gifts, talents, and capacity to serve the School community.  Volunteer areas include lunch, recess, and study hall monitors, field trip drivers, hot lunch servers, library aides and office aides.  

To keep costs in line, RTCS does not employ full-time maintenance personnel.  Parents/Guardians are encouraged to participate on “workdays” throughout the School year and summer.


*Please refer to Clearance Information found on Page 27.
 

 


      A Classical Christian School in a Reformed Tradition

2018–19
Student Handbook

Robinson Township Christian School
77 Phillips Lane
McKees Rocks, PA 15136
412-787-5919