Board Policies


Adoption Date: Apr 28, 2004
5550 - SEARCH AND SEIZURE LOCKERS, AUTOMOBILES & PERSONS

1. As used in this section, “reasonable suspicion for a search” means circumstances which would cause a reasonable person to believe that the search of a particular person, place, or thing will lead to the discovery of:

a. Evidence of a violation of the student conduct standards contained in the student handbook or Board policies.

b. Anything which because of its presence presents an immediate danger of physical harm or illness to any person.

2. All lockers and other storage areas provided for student use on school premises remain the property of the school corporation and are provided for the use of the students subject to inspection, access for maintenance, and search pursuant to this section.  No student shall lock or otherwise impede access to any locker or storage area except with a lock provided by or approved by the principal of the school in which the locker or storage area is located.  Unapproved locks shall be removed and destroyed.

a. The principal, or a member of the administrative staff designated in writing by the principal, may search a locker and its contents where the person conducting the search has reasonable suspicion for a search of the locker searched.  Where the locker is to be searched is assigned to a particular student and that student is on school premises at the time of the search, the student shall be notified prior to the search and given the option to be present at the search.

b. The principal, a member of the administrative staff, or teacher may search a desk or any other storage area on school premises other than a locker when the person conducting the search has reasonable suspicion for a search.

3. The principal, or another member of the administrative staff designated in writing by the principal and acting at the direction of the principal, may search the person of a student during a school activity if the principal has reasonable suspicion for a search of that student.  Searches of the person of a student shall be limited to:

a. Searches of the pockets of the student.

b. Any object in the possession of the student such as a purse or brief case.

c. A “pat down” of the exterior of the student’s clothing.  Searches of the person of a student which require the removal of clothing other than a coat, jacket, shoes and/or socks shall be referred to a law enforcement officer.  Searches of the person of a student shall be conducted in a private room by a person of the same sex as the student being searched.  At least one but not more than three additional persons of the same sex as the student being searched shall witness but not participate in the search.  At the request of the student to be searched, an additional person of the same sex as designated by the student, and then reasonably available on school premises shall witness the search.  The parent or guardian of any student searched shall be notified of the search as soon as reasonably possible.

4. The privilege of bringing a student-operated motor vehicle onto school premises is hereby conditioned on written consent by the student driver, the owner of the motor vehicle and the parent or guardian of the student to allow search of that motor vehicle when there is reasonable suspicion for a search of that motor vehicle.  Refusal by a student, parent or guardian, or the motor vehicle owner to provide or allow access to a motor vehicle on school premises at the time of a request to search the motor vehicle, shall be cause for termination without further hearing of the privilege of bringing a motor vehicle onto school premises.  The principal or member of the administrative staff designated in writing by the principal may request a law enforcement officer to search a motor vehicle on school premises.

5.  Anything found in the course of a search conducted in accordance with this section which is evidence of a violation of the student conduct standards or Board Policy will be:

a. Seized and admitted as evidence in any suspension or expulsion proceeding if it is tagged for identification at the time it is seized and kept in a secure place by the principal or the principal’s designee until the conclusion of the proceedings.

b. Returned to the parent or guardian or the student from whom it was seized.

c. Destroyed if it has no significant value, or

d. Turned over to any law enforcement officer.

6. Anything found in the course of a search conducted in accordance with this section which by its presence presents an immediate danger of physical harm or illness to any person may be seized and:

a. Returned to the parent or guardian of the student from whom it was seized,

b. Destroyed, or

c. Turned over to any law enforcement officer.

7. The principal, or a member of the administrative staff designated in writing by the principal, may request the assistance of a law enforcement officer to:

a. Search any area of the school premises, any student, or any motor vehicle on school premises;

b. Identify or dispose of anything found in the course of a search conducted in accordance with this section.

Where law enforcement officers respond to such a request, no school employee shall assist or otherwise participate in any search conducted.

References:
I.C. 20-33-8-32
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