Baltimore City Public Schools Student Code of Conduct

Student Attendance Policy

Students succeed in school if they attend regularly. It is essential that students attend school on a consistent basis to ensure continuity of instruction. Therefore, in order for your child to participate in reward or incentive activities that celebrate attendance, the following criteria must be met:

  • Students are expected to enter the building at 8 am.
  • Any student arriving at 8:09 am or later will be marked late.
  • If for any reason, your child leaves school before 10:30 am, he or she will be marked absent for the day.
  • Any student leaving before the end of the day must be signed out in the office.
  • Students may not be signed out between 2:15 –2:40 pm unless there is an emergency.

Students are required to attend school every day unless excused in writing by a lawful excuse. Legal absences are the following: death of immediate family member; illness of the student; court summons (for student); observance of a religious holiday; and appointment (for child) with a doctor. Attendance is monitored each day by the teachers and the office. Parents of absent students will be contacted by phone for confirmation of each absence. Parents are asked to call school for student absences and to provide a written note and/or medical note for all absences regarding sickness. Students who show a habitual pattern of lateness and/or absence will receive intervention services.

Unless there is an emergency, students may not be signed out between 2:15 pm and the end of the day. Teachers are delivering important content right up until 2:40 pm, and we don’t want your child to miss any instruction. The parent or person picking up the child must be on the Emergency Card. Be prepared to present identification and follow these steps:

  • Report to the Office.
  • Sign the child out on the “Early Dismissal Daily Log.”
  • Wait for the child to report to the office

Attendance Intervention Protocol

Hampstead Hill Academy is committed to ensuring the academic success of all students and making sure that every student is in school every day is the first step in achieving that success. The following protocol aligns with BCPS Office of Enrollment, Choice and Transfer procedures, designed to identify the support and resources necessary for all Baltimore City Public School students to attend school daily and arrive on time.

Regular student attendance is expected. If a student is not prompt and regular in attendance, proper measures shall be taken to encourage regular attendance. If such encouragement is not successful in improving the situation, a review of assessment of student learning shall be conducted and a range of interventions up to and including retention shall be instituted. The final intervention plan or decision to retain rests with the school administration.

It is the teacher’s responsibility to:

  1. Keep accurate attendance records
  2. Provide a schedule of assignments and make-up work when appropriate

School Attendance Procedures

  1. The homeroom teacher is responsible to take daily attendance with the district-wide student information system.
  2. Daily automated ‘ParentLink’ district system will phone the student’s parent/guardian each evening the absence occurs.
  3. A doctor’s note may be requested for contagious illnesses, accidents, and extended school absences of a medical nature. A certificate allowing a child to return to school may be required following an illness of three (3) consecutive school days for reasons of illness or injury. If the child has been sick, a doctor’s certificate is preferred. If a doctor has seen the child, the school nurse can meet with the parent/guardian and certify the child’s return to school.
  4. Grade Level Team Leaders or designee shall track attendance during weekly team meetings using grade level tracker. Academic Coaches will review attendance during weekly coaches meetings. The homeroom teacher will provide phone and written notification to parents at two unexcused absences per month and/or five unexcused absences in a year. (notification slips provided by coaches) The teacher shall provide evidence of phone and written notification of total absences to parents/guardians beginning at five absences at each additional five absences, i.e. 10, 15, 20 absences, documenting all contact in communication log.  Two documented home visit attempts will be conducted for any student with seven (7) absences by two members of the administrative, clinical health, or SST team. During home visit, HHA staff will take a holistic approach to supporting the family in finding a solution to the attendance challenges. This will involve a thorough conversation exploring the motivations for poor attendance (transportation, job schedules, finances, childcare, distance, etc.).
  5. Any student with ten (10) or more excused or unexcused cumulative absences must receive a certified written letter from Mr. Hornbeck requiring a parent meeting where a plan to improve student attendance is formulated; or earlier at the discretion of an administrator. Teacher must document contact in communication log.
  6. City Schools has identified 15 unexcused absences as the threshold for filing truancy charges. After 15 unexcused absences, the teacher must submit a referral to DSS-Family Preservation Specialist with Baltimore City Public Schools per COMAR’s definition of a habitual truant (a student who misses 20% of school days — 36 days by the end of the school year). Additionally, an SST meeting or IEP meeting for students with documented disabilities must be held to create a plan for attendance goals. Teacher must document in communication log.  
  7. A letter will be sent to the parent/guardian for habitual tardiness, absences or early dismissals from school. Students may be required to serve after-school detentions with his/her teacher to make up missed work. Teacher must document in communication log.

Attendance policy during covid

Currently, City Schools is hosting classes in person. The HHA attendance policy has not changed. Students are expected to attend school in person unless they submit a valid reason for an absence. In some cases, schools may shift to a virtual learning format for a limited period. In this case, students will be provided with instructional resources to support their continued engagement in learning until in-person learning resumes. Attendance during required periods of virtual learning or quarantine will be handled in the following ways:

  • Students in schools that temporarily transition to virtual learning
  • Students who are engaged in virtual learning will be marked present.
  • Students who have access to laptops or lessons but are not engaged in virtual learning will be marked “Absent Unexcused.” Schools will then reach out to the family to re-engage the student or determine if the absence should be excused.
  • An absence will be excused if a student has a compelling reason for being unable to access instructional resources.


Students that are quarantining or sick must not attend school in person during the quarantine period.  If a student is quarantining and sick, the student should focus on getting well. They do not need to participate in virtual learning while ill. This will be marked as an excused absence.  If a student is quarantining and not sick, they will be encouraged to participate in classes and learning activities provided by the school. Students will be marked as present if they participate. However, if the student does not participate in learning activities, they will be marked with an excused absence.  Once the quarantine period ends, the student must return to class or be marked as absent.

Schoolwide Expectations

  • Stay in uniform
  • Keep the following home: gum, weapons, and electronic devices including cell phones
  • Follow directions
  • Keep your hands, feet, objects, and unkind words to yourself

The following are not permitted in school:  Chewing gum, weapons, or toys and electronic devices such as games and iPods


Grade levels will arrange age appropriate rewards that could be group activities like games or outside time, stickers, snowball parties, field trips, and much more.


Consequences for not following the expectations are:

1. Verbal Warning
2. Think Time
3. Detention
4. Office Referral

Classroom Consequence Definitions

  • Verbal Warning: Student will be warned to follow the expectations or he/she will go to think time.
  • Think Time: This is a chance for students to “get themselves together” so that they can rejoin the class in learning. Students must complete the Think Time Worksheet in order to return to the class activity. Think Time Worksheets are age appropriate.
  • Detention: Students will serve detention on the day of the offense, no exceptions. Parents will be notified by a phone call by the teacher issuing the detention.
    Office Referral: In the event a student is sent to the office, the teacher will complete an office referral form detailing what occurred. Mr. Hornbeck, Mr. Paz or Ms. Bailey will handle these situations.

Immediate Office Referral Definitions

  • Leaving the school building or playground area without permission.
  • Leaving the building, classroom or assigned area without obtaining prior approval of the teacher or administrator.
  • Having controlled substances which is being in possession of or using any form of alcohol, drugs or tobacco – the term drug includes any mood altering substance or facsimile thereof that has not been medically prescribed.
  • Theft which is taking property belonging to the school or any individual or group without prior permission.
  • Vandalism which is Intentionally causing damage to or defacing school property or the property of others.
  • Weapons which is being in possession of any items designated as weapons, including simulated weapons. Weapons are defined to include but not limited to, noxious gases, knives, chains, clubs, brass knuckles and firearms.
  • Noncompliance which is refusing to follow directions when reasonable efforts have been made to enable the student to cooperate.
  • Disruption which is having sustained, disruptive behavior that prevents instruction from continuing or continuing with difficulty after reasonable attempts have been made to correct the behavior.
  • Assault which is threatening to or inflicting harm on another person.
  • Other which would include crisis behavior meaning a serious low incident behavior that affects safety or is regarded as a crisis or emergency behavior.

Saturday Detention Policy

For students in grades 4-8, in addition to our schoolwide expectations, repetitive and/or extreme behaviors might warrant a Saturday detention. Saturday detention will be served at the school from 8 – 10 am and will be supervised by a teacher or administrator.

A Saturday detention will be necessary for:

  • Skipping an assigned weekday detention. (If a student is assigned detention between Monday and Friday but fails to report on the assigned day, he/she will be required to serve detention that Saturday morning.)
  • Displaying habitual disruptive or inappropriate behaviors.

If a student fails to report to an assigned Saturday detention, he/she will not be permitted into the school building Monday morning unless accompanied by a parent or guardian. Once the parent conference takes place, the student will then be required to serve the next Saturday detention. Parents will be notified if a student earns a Saturday detention by the preceding Friday at 2:30 pm, at the latest. If you have any questions about the Saturday detention policy, please feel free to contact Mr. Paz at 410.396.9146.

Grading and Reporting

The intention of City Schools’ Grading and Reporting administrative regulation is to introduce fair and uniform grading and reporting practices throughout the district. This administrative regulation is being implemented to ensure systemic consistency for assessing student achievement. This will be done using procedures that are based on clearly defined and consistently-used formats for grading and reporting.  For more information, please talk with your child’s teacher or an academic coach.

Uniform Policy

The HHA student uniform consists of a collared navy blue shirt with tan or khaki pants, shorts or skirts. Shorts and skirts may not be shorter than fingertip length. Jeans are not permitted. If your child needs an extra layer in the classroom, we suggest a navy blue or tan sweater or crew (not hooded) navy blue sweatshirt. Outdoor jackets and hooded sweatshirts are not acceptable to be worn during the day in the classroom. For your convenience, HHA sells uniform shirts along with an array of other apparel items. Uniform shirts can be purchased at school, and other items can be purchased at the HHA Webstore. Regarding shoes, students should wear appropriate shoes with a back strap. Additionally, every year, each student will receive a free HHA t-shirt that can be worn interchangeably with the collared shirt.

BCPSS policy also includes the following:

  • No pajama-type attire, undershirts or other bedtime attire is allowed during the school day or during school-sponsored activities.
  • Footwear such as slippers, thongs,“heelys,” and flip-flops are not allowed during the school day or during school-sponsored activities.
  • No real or imitation leather, fur, or animal-skin jackets, coats, vests, pants, or skirts are allowed.
    No hats, hair rollers or curlers are allowed during the school day or at school-sponsored activities.
  • Because theft and loss are school security concerns, wearing jewelry in schools is prohibited. Specifically, the following items cannot be worn: metal chains, ropes, necklaces, bracelets, rings, large or extravagant earrings, multifingered rings. Exceptions are wedding rings for married students (these students will have to supply proof to the school of their marriage), school rings, nonvisible metal religious items, and medical identification bracelets.
  • Pants should be worn appropriately at the waist, without undergarments showing.
  • Apparel with vulgar statements or statements promoting illegal drugs, alcohol, sex, violence, or gangs is not allowed.
  • Shorts and skirts may not be shorter than fingertip length. Halter tops, tank tops, spaghetti straps, muscle shirts, or see-through tops are not allowed.
  • No sweatpants or jogging pants with elastic at the bottom of the legs are allowed. No elastic fabric sportswear is allowed.
  • No clothing designed or altered to expose undergarments or parts of the body except arms or legs is allowed.
  • No undergarments worn as outerwear are allowed. Clothing should be worn so that undergarments, including boxer shorts, thongs, or bras, are not exposed.

Cell Phone Policy

In accordance with the Baltimore City Public School System policy on electronics and cell phone usage, if a cell phone or electronic of any type is seen and/or heard by any adult in the building, it will be confiscated and only returned when a parent/guardian comes to school to sign for it. If a student is found with their cell phone or electronic a second time, it will be confiscated by the principal and not returned until the end of the year. Additionally, no headphones, ear buds or hand held devices are allowed during the school day and will also be confiscated.

Students can bring a cell phone into the school, but the phone must be turned off prior to entering the building. Phones are not permitted to be turned on during recess, field trips, etc. If a teacher hears or sees the phone, the phone will be taken from the student. If the student has the phone in their pants pocket, and a large portion of the phone is showing, the phone will be taken from the student. If you can see an outline of the phone but not the phone itself, this is acceptable.

Pocket Book Policy

Small and medium sized pocket books will be allowed in class unless the privilege is abused. Students may have a pocket book but it must stay on the back of their chair during instruction. If the pocket book becomes a distraction in any way, it must be placed in the student’s locker or on a teacher’s desk.

Lavatory Policy

HHA enforces a supervised lavatory policy in order to keep the building safe. PreK and kindergarten classrooms have lavatories in their rooms. Students may use the lavatory anytime during the day, as needed. Youngsters in grades one through eight have two supervised lavatory times during the day, which are dedicated for their specific class. Additionally, the lavatory may be used during breakfast and at a child’s lunch time period.   Of course, emergency lavatory uses and medically documented requirements will always be granted. Students must have a pass to use the lavatory, unless they are with their entire class. Students should use the facilities as quickly as possible and leave after washing their hands. All students have the responsibility of keeping the lavatories in a clean and orderly condition.

Playground Policy

The HHA Playground is open from dawn to dusk for supervised children 2 to 10 years old.  Please use the gate for entry.  The following is not permitted: rough-housing, chasing, fighting, running, picking/throwing mulch or rocks, animals of any kind, cigarettes, food or drink of any kind, bicycles or skateboards.