The Vision, Mission, Values & Approaches of Learning at the American Academy of Innovation
The vision of the American Academy of Innovation (AAI) is to discover, challenge, and grow the potential within people, systems, and processes. We believe every person has intrinsic value and unique significance. Therefore, we challenge all potential in individuals, systems, and institutions. Thus, we will inspire and improve our worlds. We strive to challenge potential through the discovery and development of key values: civility, curiosity, ownership, individuality, innovation, and inclusivity.
We will achieve our vision and mission by embracing these approaches:
- Personalized Competency-Based Learning (PCBL)
- Project-Based Learning
- Experiential Learning
- Utah Portrait of a Graduate
- Service Leadership
- Local Community Partnerships
- State, National, and Global Engagement and Improvement
- Career and Technological Education
We believe that the ultimate goal of education is to empower the individual to enhance their lives, as well as that of their communities and the world. Thus, education must focus on the use of knowledge and understanding, and the application of knowledge and understanding in varying disciplines. Innovation, not memorization, drives progress. To meet this goal of adaptability and ability, students must have access to purposeful, clear curriculum that is taught through inquiry, exploration, experience, discovery, application, and reflection.
AAI strives to challenge potential every day. This represents the why of AAI. Our intention is to not only discover, challenge, and grow potential but to also inspire and improve worlds. We want everyone involved in AAI to push themselves, take ownership of their education, and improve both their world and the world at large. This applies to staff as well as students.
The following policies will allow AAI, as a school and a community, to fulfill the mission, vision, values, and approaches to learning.
Code of Ethics
As a member of AAI’s Governing Board, I will strive to improve public education, and to that end I will:
- Attend all regularly scheduled board meetings insofar as possible and become informed concerning the issues to be considered at those meetings;
- Recognize that I should endeavor to make policy decisions only after full discussion at publicly held board meetings;
- Render all decisions based on the available facts and my independent judgment and refuse to surrender that judgment to individuals or special-interest groups;
- Encourage the free expression of opinion by all board members and seek systematic communications between the board and parents, students, teachers, staff, and administration;
- Work with other board members to establish effective board policies and to delegate authority for the administration of AAI to the Executive Director;
- Communicate to other board members and the Executive Director expression of public reaction to board policies and school programs;
- Inform myself about current educational issues by individual study and through participation in programs providing needed information, such as those sponsored by the state of Utah and national school boards association;
- Support the employment of those persons best qualified to serve as school staff, and insist on a regular and impartial evaluation of all staff;
- Avoid being placed in a position of conflict of interest;
- Take no private action that will compromise the board or administration and respect the confidentiality of information that is privileged under applicable law; and
- Remember always that my first and greatest concern must be the educational welfare of the students attending AAI.
The purpose of committees is to assist the Board of Directors (Board), the Director, and the parent organization, IGNITE, in accomplishing the mission and charter of American Academy of Innovation (AAI).
The Board establishes the following standing committees to report to the Board:
- Academic Excellence
- Financial Accountability
- Capital Fundraising
- School Land Trust
The Board appoints the Director to establish the following standing committees which will report to the Director:
- Public Relations
The Director will establish additional committees and IGNITE leadership will establish additional parent organization committees, as they deem necessary, for the performance of their specific responsibilities and authority, within the school charter and mission.
The Director and committees shall not cause or allow any decision, action, condition, or organizational circumstance that is illegal, imprudent, contrary to commonly accepted business practices and professional ethics, or contrary to the school charter and mission.
Academic Excellence Committee. This committee is delegated the responsibility to present to the Board annually an accountability plan for gathering data about the school’s academic progress, staff, student, and parent relationships, and the Director’s job performance. The Academic Excellence Committee is responsible to compile the data required by the school accountability plan and charter; and to present the data including a summary to the Board. Members of the Academic Excellence Committee will be appointed by the Board.
Financial Accountability Committee. The responsibility of this committee is to ensure that proper accounting controls are implemented and utilized; to prescribe and supervise the methods and systems of accounting to be followed; to see that complete books and records of account are kept; to prescribe and supervise an adequate system of internal audit; and, to oversee the preparation of statements of account showing the financial position of the school and the results of its operations. The committee will present recommendations to the Board for ensuring tax and other required financial reports are filed properly and in a timely manner, as well as recommendations for employing external auditors. The Treasurer will chair the Financial Accountability Committee, and the Business Manager will be a member. Other members of the committee will be appointed by the Board.
Capital Fundraising Committee. This committee is delegated the responsibility to raise large donations to the school for use in capital improvements and other large one-time expenses. The Capital Fundraising Committee will coordinate with other fundraising committees established by the Director or Parent Organization, IGNITE. The Committee will recommend to the Board a plan for special honors to individuals or groups making large donations to the school. Members of the Capital Fundraising Committee will be appointed by the Board.
School Land Trust Committee. The Board designates elected members of the Board and the Director as the members of the School Land Trust Committee. An additional member of the school staff will be elected annually by the staff to serve on the School Land Trust Committee. The School Land Trust Committee is designated to make decisions about the School Land Trust funds and is given the responsibility to make a school plan consistent with Utah Code Section 53A-16-101.5.
Members of committees reporting to the Director will be appointed by the Director and may include Board members, staff, parents, or other community members. Responsibilities of committees reporting to the Director will be delegated to the committee in writing by the Director. The Director will ensure that the responsibilities of the standing committees reporting to the Director are consistent with roles and duties outlined in the school’s Charter, State and Federal Law, and the requirements of State and Federal grants the school has accepted.
Global Executive Limitations Policy. The Director shall not cause or allow any organizational practice, activity, decision, or circumstance that is either unlawful, imprudent, in violation of commonly accepted business, professional and educational ethics and practices, or not in accordance with the charter of the American Academy of Innovation.
Treatment of Students. With respect to interactions with students or those applying to be students, the Director shall not cause or allow conditions, procedures, or decisions that are unsafe, untimely, undignified, or unnecessarily intrusive.
The Director shall not:
- Elicit information for which there is no clear necessity.
- Use methods of collecting, reviewing, transmitting, or storing client information that fail to protect against improper access to the material, and are not in compliance with State record-keeping archiving policies.
- Fail to operate facilities with appropriate accessibility and privacy, including but not limited to:
- Not enforcing building access procedures
- Not keeping all exterior doors locked
- Not establishing emergency lockdown and evacuation procedures
- Not maintaining safe drop-off/pick-up procedures
- Fail to establish with students a clear understanding of expectations, including but not limited to:
- Dress Code Standards
- Academic Standards
- Behavioral Standards
- Fail to inform students of this policy, or to provide a way to be heard for persons who believe they have not been accorded a reasonable interpretation of their rights under this policy.
Treatment of Parents. With respect to interactions with students or those applying to be students, the Director shall not cause or allow conditions, procedures, or decisions that are unsafe, untimely, undignified, or unnecessarily intrusive.
The Director shall not:
- Elicit information for which there is no clear necessity.
- Divulge information or opinion for which there is no clear necessity, including:
- Information or opinions about a student(s) to persons other than the student’s parents
- Causing or allowing staff members to disclose information or opinion about a student to persons other than the student’s parents
- Fail to establish with parents a clear understanding of school expectations, including:
- Dress code procedures
- Safe drop off/pick up procedures
- Volunteer hours
- Fail to inform parents of this policy, or to provide a way to be heard for persons who believe they have not been accorded a reasonable interpretation of their rights under this policy.
Conflict of Interest Policy
The purpose of the following policy and procedures is to prevent the personal interest of Board members, school employees, and volunteers from interfering with the performance of their duties to AAI, or result in personal, financial, professional, or political gain on the part of such persons at the expense of AAI or its members, supporters, and other stakeholders.
Conflict of Interest: A conflict, or the appearance of a conflict, between the private interests and official responsibilities of a person in a position of trust. Persons in a position of trust include Board members, employees, and officers of AAI.
Board: means the Board of Directors.
Officer: means an officer of the Board.
Volunteer: a person—other than a Board member—who does not receive compensation for services and expertise provided to the school and retains a significant independent decision-making authority to commit resources of the organization.
Staff Member: a person who receives all or part of her or his income from the payroll of the school.
Supporter: Refers to corporations, foundations, individuals, 501 (c) (3) nonprofits, and other nonprofit organizations who contribute to the school.
Conflict of Interest Policies & Practices. Full disclosure, by notice in writing, shall be made by the interested parties to the full Board in all conflicts of interest, including but not limited to, the following:
- A Board member is related to another board member or staff member by blood, marriage, or domestic partnership.
- An employee in a supervisory capacity is related to another employee whom she or he supervises.
- A Board member or their organization stands to benefit from a transaction, or an employee of such organization receives payment from the school for any subcontract, goods, or services other than as part of her or his regular job responsibilities, or as reimbursement for reasonable expenses incurred as provided in the bylaws and Board policy.
- A Board member’s organization receives grant funding from the school.
- A Board member or employee is a member of the governing body of a contributor to the school.
- A volunteer working on behalf of the school who meets any of the situations or criteria listed above.
Following full disclosure of a possible conflict of interest or any condition listed above, the Board shall determine whether a conflict of interest exists and, if so, the Board shall vote to authorize or reject the transaction or take any other action deemed necessary to address the conflict and protect the school’s best interests. Both votes shall be by a majority vote without counting the vote of any interested Board member, even if the disinterested Board members are less than a quorum, provided that, at least one consenting Board member, is disinterested.
A Board member or Committee member who is formally considering employment with the school must take a temporary leave of absence until the position is filled. Such a leave will be taken within the Board member’s elected term, which will not be extended because of the leave. A Board member or committee member who is formally considering employment with the school must submit a written request for a temporary leave of absence to the Secretary of the Board—sent to the school’s office—indicating the time period of the leave. The Secretary of the Board will inform the Chair of the Board of such a request. The Chair will bring the request to the Board for action. The request, and any action taken, shall be reflected in the official minutes of the Board meeting.
An interested Board member, officer, or employee shall not participate in any discussion or debate of the Board, or of any Committee or Subcommittee thereof, in which the subject of discussion is a contract, transaction, or situation in which there may be a perceived or actual conflict of interest. However, they may be present to provide clarifying information in such a discussion or debate, unless this is objected to by any present Board or committee member.
Anyone in a position to make decisions about spending school resources, including transactions such as purchase contracts—who also stands to benefit from that decision—has a duty to disclose that conflict as soon as it arises or becomes apparent; she or he should not participate in any final decisions.
A copy of this policy shall be given to all Board members, employees, volunteers, or other key stakeholders upon commencement of such person’s relationship with the school or at the official adoption of the the stated policy. Each Board member, officer, employee, and volunteer shall sign and date the policy at the beginning of her or his term of service or employment, and each year thereafter. Failure to sign does not nullify the policy.
This policy and disclosure form must be filed annually by all specified parties.
Conflict of Interest Disclosure Form
The Conflict of Interest Disclosure Form must be filed annually by all specified parties, as identified in the School Conflict of Interest Policy Statement which was ratified by the Board of Directors.
Continual Notice of Nondiscrimination
It is the policy of AAI not to discriminate based on race, color, national origin, sex, gender, or disabilities in its programs, services, or activities as required by Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, as amended; Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972; and Section of 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended.
It is the policy of AAI not to discriminate based on race, color, national origin, sex, gender, and disabilities or age in its employment practices as required by Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, as amended; Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972; The Age Discrimination Act of 1975, as amended; and
Section 504 the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended.
AAI assures that the lack of English skills will not be a barrier to admission and participation in all educational programs.
For more information about your rights or grievance procedures, contact the Title IX Coordinator, Mia Prazen, the Section 504 Coordinator, Lorelee Ingles, or the IEP Coordinator, Lorelee Ingles. They may be reached by phone, (801) 810-4786; by email, email@example.com; or by visiting the school, 5410 West South Jordan Parkway, South Jordan, UT 84009.
Complaint: A written submission from any individual within the school community including student, parent, legal guardian or employee, that:
- Sets forth the allegation that there has been a violation of any school policy, reasonable and accepted practices, or state or federal rule or law
- Specifically identifies the policy, practice, rule, or statute violated.
Complainant: Any individual or group of individuals aggrieved by a decision or condition falling under policy, reasonable and accepted practices, or state or federal rule or law.
Organizational Structure: The hierarchy for addressing all complaints. The organizational structure varies depending on the area of the alleged violation.
Respondent: Any individual or group of individuals who are named as having violated a policy, reasonable and accepted practices, or state or federal rule or law.
Below is the hierarchy used for Complaint Procedures in this policy:
Informal Complaint Procedure. Any individual alleging a complaint is encouraged to resolve the problem, if possible, through a discussion with the person(s) suspected of a violation, beginning at the lowest level of organizational structure.
- Students and parents should discuss classroom concerns first with classroom teachers.
- Employees should discuss concerns first with directly involved parties.
- When individuals hear complaints or receive formal complaints, they should ensure that the Complainants (or potential Complainants) have first attempted, in good faith, to resolve the problem(s) with the person(s) directly involved.
Formal Complaint Procedure; Step One. If the informal discussion with directly involved parties does not resolve the issue, the complainant shall file a formal written complaint with the next responsible individual in the organizational structure. Complaint forms are available at the front office or from the school website (see below this section), but any written or oral documentation adhering to the following guidelines would be acceptable as a formal complaint provided that it is received by the next responsible individual as a formal complaint and that:
- The complaint should be filed within forty (45) working days of the date the Complainant knew, or should have known, of the circumstances that precipitated the complaint.
- The complaint must detail the following:
- Complainant’s name(s)
- Date of submission
- Date of incident(s)
- Respondent’s name(s)
- Factual recounting of concern(s)
- Rationale for the concern(s)
- Desired outcome
The responsible individual shall acknowledge receipt of the complaint in writing, within three (3) working days following receipt of the complaint and shall respond with a resolution to the complaint in writing, within five (5) working days of the acknowledgment of receipt.
Step Two. If the response to STEP ONE does not adequately resolve the complaint, the complainant shall submit a request for review of the complaint and resolution to the Director within three (3) working days following the receipt of the resolution. Upon receipt of the request for review, the director shall:
- Investigate the complaint with the parties concerned in the complaint within 10 working days of receipt of the request for review. (Note: The Director may choose to convene a complaint committee of two to three additional administrators or members of the faculty as part of the investigation of a complaint, and in order to recommend a decision on the issue of complaint.)
- At the conclusion of the investigation, the Director shall render a decision and issue a written decision, setting forth his or her findings and recommendations for the resolution of the complaint within five (5) working days following the investigation.
- The complaint shall be considered resolved if the complainant and the committee accept the recommendations of the Director.
If no written report has been issued within the time limits set forth in STEP TWO, or if the Complainant shall reject the recommendations of the Director, the complainant shall have the right to appeal to the Board for review of the complaint at the next step.
Step Three. Complainants may appeal to the Board for a hearing of due process.
- A written request for Board review of the complaint must be submitted to the Board Secretary within 10 days of the date of the Director’s decision, or the expiration of the time limits set forth in STEP THREE.
- The Board shall review the complaint and the Director’s report and may hold a hearing.
- The Board may affirm the Director’s recommendations, amend the recommendations, or affirm the recommendations in part, and amend in part.
- The Board’s written decision shall be issued by the Board Secretary within twenty-one (21) working days of receipt of the Complainant’s written appeal.
- If no written decision has been issued within the time limit set forth in STEP FOUR, or if the Complainant shall reject the decision of the Board, the Complainant shall be free to pursue such litigation or statutory remedy as the law may provide.
- Complainant will be informed that the time limits set forth in this policy may be modified or extended if mutually agreed by the employee, or the employee’s designated representative, and the School Administration. If either party wishes to change the timeline set forth in this policy, the party will request the modification(s) from the other party and both parties will be required to agree to the modification(s). The Business Manager will issue a letter of understanding to the parties outlining the modified timeline.
- No person shall suffer recrimination or discrimination because of participation in this complaint procedure.
- Employees shall be free to testify regarding any complaint filed hereunder.
- Confidentiality will be observed pending the resolution of the complaint.
- A representative of his or her choice may accompany the Complainant in all stages of these proceedings.
- The Business Manager will maintain records of all complaints. The records will be kept in a separate and confidential file. Information regarding complaints will be classified as private.
- Gossip among employees will not be tolerated. Gossip undermines the efforts of all employees to operate a successful school and may be grounds for disciplinary action, up to, and including termination of employment. When employees have concerns, they should follow the procedure in this policy to resolve such concerns.
Civil Rights Complaint and Investigation Procedure
Discrimination—Discrimination is the unequal treatment of a person based on that person’s protected characteristic. This prohibition covers any term or condition of employment, academic program, student service, activity, benefit, or opportunity provided by AAI. An example of discrimination is a supervisor denying wage increases, preferential shifts, or other terms or conditions of employment because of that person’s race, color, religion, creed, sex, age, national origin, ancestry, marital status, veteran status, gender identity or expression, non-relevant mental or physical disability, or other protected status.
Sexual Harassment—Sexual harassment means conduct on the basis of sex that satisfies one or more of the following:
- Submission to such conduct is made either explicitly or implicitly a term or condition of instruction, employment, or participation in any school activity (i.e. quid pro quo);
- Unwelcomed conduct that a reasonable person would determine is so severe, pervasive, and objectively offensive that it effectively denies a person equal access to the school’s education program or activity;
- In determining whether the alleged conduct constitutes sexual harassment, consideration shall be given to the record as a whole and to the totality of circumstances, including the nature and frequency of the conduct and the context in which the alleged incidents occurred.
Sexual Assault—Sexual Assault means conduct on the basis of sex that meets the legal requirements as defined by the Clery Act, dating violence, domestic violence, or stalking as defined in the Violence Against Women Act.
Functional Examples: Depending on the particular circumstances, sex discrimination, sexual harassment or sexual assault may include, but is not limited to, the following:
- Physical assaults of a sexual nature, such as rape, sexual battery, molestation, or attempts to commit these assaults; and intentional physical conduct that is sexual in nature such as touching, pinching, patting, grabbing, poking, or brushing against another individual’s body.
- Offering or implying an employment-related reward (such as a promotion, raise, or different work assignment) or an education-related reward (such as a better grade, a letter of recommendation, favorable treatment in the classroom, assistance in obtaining employment, grants or fellowships, or admission to any educational program or activity) in exchange for sexual favors or submission to sexual conduct.
- Threatening or taking a negative employment action (such as termination, demotion, denial of an employee benefit or privilege, or change in working conditions) or negative educational action (such as giving an unfair grade, withholding a letter of recommendation, or withholding assistance with any educational program or activity).
- The use or display in the classroom or workplace, including electronic, of pornographic or sexually harassing materials such as posters, photos, cartoons or graffiti without pedagogical justification.
- Unwelcome sexual advances, repeated propositions or requests for a sexual relationship to an individual who has previously indicated that such conduct is unwelcome, or sexual gestures, noises, remarks, jokes, questions, or comments about a person’s sexuality or sexual experience. Such conduct between peers must be sufficiently severe, persistent, or pervasive that it creates an educational or working environment that is hostile or abusive. A single incident involving severe misconduct may rise to the level of harassment.
Reporting the Complaint: Overall, AAI’s response to an allegation of violation of law or policy will be determined by the nature of the alleged violation and the totality of information available at the time of the alleged incident. Requests from complainants to “just record my concerns” or “not take any action at this time” may not be honored depending on the circumstances involved. If at any time AAI feels an investigation is necessary, an investigation may proceed without the support of the potential complainant.
How and Where to Lodge a Complaint: A person wishing to file a complaint may submit a written statement to the Operations/Business Manager, Director, or another administrator. Additionally, an oral complaint may be filed provided the oral complaint is delivered to the Operations/Business Manager, Director, or other administrator and the complaint contains the basic reporting requirements. The basic reporting requirements are as follows:
- Your name
- Your email
- Your phone
- Date of the incident
- Approximate time of the incident
- Location of the incident
- Persons involved
- Description of the incident.
Individuals may also be assisted in the complaint documentation process by any administrator. Any complaint should specify:
- The name of the individual(s) against whom the complaint is made
- The nature of the alleged offense (discrimination based on a protected criterion, harassment, disability, etc)
- The specifics of the offending incident (s) with precise details (what happened, who was present, when, where, any reasons why they believe the action was taken)
- The date and signature of the person making the complaint
Complaint Involving Students: Allegations of discrimination or policy violation involving student-to-student interactions will be referred to the discipline and counseling departments for investigation and resolution. Allegations involving school employees, applicants, or visitors will be handled by the Operations Manager, Director, or another administrator.
Timeline: Complaints should be filed within 90 days of the most recent offending incident; however, should unusual circumstances prevent the timely filing of a complaint, complaints may be filed within 180 days of the most recent offending incident. Unusual circumstances include, but are not limited to, concerns about retaliation; trauma and subsequent healing; misconception or miss-understanding of the level of wrongfulness to warrant filing a grievance; an illness or accident preventing the timely filing; emotional and/or mental duress; slowed or delayed mental, emotional, or physical processing. The school reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to investigate and act on complaints involving incidents that have occurred beyond the defined time limit as warranted through circumstance.
Administration, staff, or teachers who learn of incidents that may be a violation of the school’s prohibition against discrimination or harassment are expected to promptly report the matter to the Operations/Business Manager, Director, or another administrator.
Support Persons: An individual who is a Complainant or Respondent may have another member of the school community present during the complaint and during an investigation as a support person. That support person may not be an attorney and may be present in support of the Complainant or Respondent, but may not participate in the investigative process. Faculty or staff who are members of a union will be informed that they may have a union representative as a support person. Individuals who are witnesses to the behavior in question may not serve as support persons. All are expected to maintain confidentiality regarding any and all exchanges of information during the investigation.
Confidentiality: The school will make every reasonable effort to maintain the confidentiality and privacy of all parties involved to the extent allowable in accordance with state and federal laws and AAI policy. Timely cooperation is expected of all involved parties throughout the investigative process. All parties (complainant, respondent, witnesses, and support persons) are expected to be respectful and confidential during the process of an investigation.
Pre-Investigation Process: During the pre-investigation evaluation period, the assigned investigator will determine if:
- The complaint is timely
- The situation described in the complaint arose in the course of a school program or activity
- The complaint is directed against a school employee, student, or visitor
- If factually supported, the alleged behavior could constitute unlawful discrimination, harassment, assault, or retaliation
If the complaint does not meet the above criteria or establish a violation of state or federal law or Title IX policy, the Complaint Team (a team specified by the school administration and assigned to further investigate a complaint) may close the case. However, the Respondent may still be subject to school action if the alleged behavior violates another school policy or is otherwise inappropriate.
Investigative Process: The Complaint Team will determine the most effective method of investigating the allegations raised by the complainant. This will most likely involve conducting a thorough fact-finding investigation, which includes separate meetings with the Complainant, Respondent, and witnesses with first-hand knowledge of the situation; and reviewing and analyzing relevant records as they relate to the allegations. A Complainant will be provided an opportunity to discuss his/her complaint with the investigator who will, in turn, determine if the complaint falls within the scope of nondiscrimination/harassment procedures. The Complainant, Respondent, and witnesses will have the right to present evidence (including documents and names of witnesses) to the assigned investigator. It will be within the investigator’s discretion to determine the weight of the evidence and whether it is necessary or appropriate to talk to all persons listed.
Participants in the process may be requested to document their statements. If a person declines to provide a written statement or sign a statement taken by the investigator that documents his/her account of the incident (s), the Complaint Team will conduct an investigation based upon available information. However, at all times, those involved will receive a procedurally fair, prompt, and thorough evaluation whose outcome is documented in writing. Upon completion of the investigation, the Complainant and the Respondent will be notified of the outcome. At this time the Complainant and the Respondent may submit written, relevant questions that a party wants to be asked of any party or witness. The Complaint Team will provide each party with answers, and allow for additional, limited follow-up questions from each party.
The school will take interim measures as necessary to prevent the Complainant and Respondent from being subjected to discrimination or harassment during the investigative process. The school will take steps to ensure that any interim measures taken do not adversely affect the Complainant.
Informal Resolution Process: The Complaint Team will have 21 days from receipt of a complaint to evaluate the complaint, contact the Respondent and Complainant and attempt to resolve the complaint if informal resolution is possible. The informal resolution process is an abbreviated process for less complicated matters that can be quickly resolved to the satisfaction of both parties. An example of such a matter might be a single comment that the complainant deemed objectionable and either clarification or an apology would resolve the matter. The informal process is completely voluntary, and both parties must agree to it. A Complainant has the right in every case to insist on a formal investigation and findings. The school recognizes that there may be certain complaints, for example, those involving sexual assault, where the informal process will never be appropriate.
Evidentiary Standard: The investigator shall determine there is unlawful discrimination based upon a “preponderance of evidence” standard. This standard means that it is more likely than not that unlawful discrimination occurred.
Investigative Time Frames: The investigator will create a written report describing the findings. AAI will strive to complete the investigation within 90 days of receipt of the complaint. Both parties will receive notification of the outcome within seven days of the completion of the report. This period may be extended should it take a longer period of time to properly investigate a complaint.
Prohibition Against Retaliation: Retaliation against persons who participate in the complaint procedure is prohibited by federal and state law, including Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act, Title IX of the Educational Amendments of 1972, and Utah’s R477-15-2 and is a violation of the school’s non-discrimination policy. Retaliation exists when action is taken against a participant which affects his or her employment, academic, or business status which is motivated in whole or in part by his or her participation in the process. Retaliation may be found even where the underlying complaint is found to have no merit. Persons who feel that they have been subject to retaliation may file a complaint to the Operations/HR Manager, Director, or another administrator.
Corrective Action: If a final report finds that unlawful discrimination or harassment occurred, AAI will determine appropriate corrective action. The school will take steps to prevent the reoccurrence of any discrimination with remedies including discipline up to and including discharge for the Respondent. AAI will also provide remedies to the Complainant, as deemed appropriate. For example, if because of sexual discrimination an employee was denied a pay increase, the school will take steps to ensure the employee receives an appropriate pay increase.
Guests and other persons who violate the policy are subject to corrective action, which may include removal from campus and termination of contractual agreements. The school may also decide to take action if a Respondent is found to have engaged in inappropriate workplace behavior. Disciplinary action will be determined in accordance with Human Resources practice and any applicable contract.
Filing a false complaint: Any individual who knowingly files a false complaint under this policy, or who knowingly provides false information to or intentionally misleads AAI officials who are involved in a complaint, may be subject to disciplinary and/or corrective action.
For more information about your rights or grievance procedures, contact the Title IX Coordinator, Mia Prazen, the Section 504 Coordinator, Lorelee Ingles, or the IEP Coordinator, Lorelee Ingles. They may be reached by phone, (801) 810-4786; by email, firstname.lastname@example.org; or by visiting the school, 5410 West South Jordan Parkway, South Jordan, UT 84009.
For assistance related to civil rights, you may contact the regional OCR enforcement office serving Utah. Contact the enforcement offices if you wish to file a complaint (or use our online complaint form) or if you need technical assistance on a problem or assistance to prevent civil rights problems. We encourage students and parents, representatives of educational institutions, and other OCR customers to use e-mail or fax to communicate with OCR when possible.
Denver OfficeOffice for Civil Rights
U.S. Department of Education
Cesar E. Chavez Memorial Building
1244 Speer Boulevard, Suite 310
Denver, CO 80204-3582
FAX: 303-844-4303; TDD: 800-877-8339
Purpose: In order to maintain the highest levels of academic and pedagogical integrity it is necessary to review and adopt certain educator qualification standards that align with both state law and the unique vision, mission, and needs of AAI. This policy intends to outline the current licensing levels as well as provide guidance to facilitate LEA specific licensure requirements and recommendations.
Acceptable Licensing Levels:
- Professional Educator License:
- Successful completion of a state-approved, university-level teacher training degree program
- Bachelor’s, Master’s, Ed. Specialist, or Doctoral degree in education
- Accredited university
- Successful completion of a state-approved Alternate Pathway to Professional Educator License (APPEL)
- Utah Effective Teaching Standards (Board Rule R277-530)
- Utah Pedagogical Performance Assessment
- Met all requirements for a professional license or license area (Board Rule R277-301)
- Met all educator and clinical experience competencies in the license area (Board Rule R277-304)
- Demonstrated competency in the applicable license area
- Associate Educator License:
- Bachelor’s degree (or higher) from a regionally accredited university or evidence of appropriate CTE expertise.
- Enrolled in a state-approved APPEL program.
- Cleared Utah State Board of Education (USBE) Background Fingerprint Check.
- Submitted original transcripts from all universities.
- Content Knowledge Assessment
- Take the appropriate Praxis exam; see Utah State Licensure Test Requirements Draft 2020, or
- Have appropriate CTE certifications, or
- Have a major in the field in which you are seeking licensure – Secondary and CTE license areas only.
- Completed USBE Associate Educator License Modules
- Basic Special Education Law and Instruction
- Educator Ethics
- Classroom Management and Instruction
- Utah Effective Teaching Standards (UETS)
- Local Education Agency (LEA) License:
- Complete a bachelor’s or higher degree in a related field of study; or
- Have exceptional or specialized occupational experience, training, or expertise directly related to the area of assignment; and,
- Complete a criminal background check including review of any criminal offenses and clearance in accordance with Rule R277-214; and,
- Complete the educator ethics review described in Rule R277-500 within one calendar year prior to the application.
- Official letter of request and assurances sent to Superintendent
- May add license areas or endorsements to existing Associate or Professional Licenses
- AAI Shall
- Encourage transition from an LEA License to a Professional License.
- Identify applicable educational, skill, and/or content knowledge requirements for enrollment in a qualified educator preparation program.
- Identify paths and opportunities to prepare for the successful passage of a pedagogical performance assessment.
- Develop significant competency and knowledge sufficient to justify an extension request from the Utah State Board of Education for a continued LEA License if the transition to an Associate License is not reasonable or applicable.
Policy: AAI strives to attract and retain the highest quality educators from a wide variety of disciplines and experience. AAI is committed to compliance with Utah State Board of Education (USBE) rules outlining requirements and procedures for obtaining educator licenses required for employment as a licensed educator. Therefore, AAI recognizes the license structure of an LEA-specific educator license, associate license, and professional license and allows school administration to determine specific license areas of concentration and endorsement in accordance with R277-301 (7).
Professional Educator Licenses
The Professional Educator License is the highest level of teacher licensure available for K-12 educators. In order to qualify for a professional license, candidates must do the following: successful completion of a state-approved, university-level teacher training degree program Bachelor’s, Master’s, Ed. Specialist, or Doctoral degree in education from an accredited university; successful completion of a state-approved Alternate Pathway to Professional Educator License (APPEL); successful completion of the Utah Effective Teaching Standards (Board Rule R277-530); successful completion of the Utah Pedagogical Performance Assessment; completing all requirements for a professional license or license area (Board Rule R277-301); successful completion of all educator and clinical experience competencies in the license area (Board Rule R277-304); demonstrated competency in the applicable license area.
Associate Educator Licenses
The Associate Educator License (AEL) is for anyone who wants to become a Utah teacher, but has not completed an educator preparation program (university-based or alternate program). The AEL is designed as a temporary, state-specific license that will lead to professional licensure. In order to qualify for an AEL, teachers must complete the following: hold a Bachelor’s degree (or higher) from a regionally accredited university or evidence of appropriate CTE expertise; be enrolled in a state-approved APPEL program; clear the Utah State Board of Education (USBE) Background Fingerprint Check.
Local Education Agency Licenses
The LEA License is for those individuals who do not yet qualify for AEL or Professional licensure, but who do desire to teach and who do possess meaningful, valuable, and demonstrative skills/competencies. In order to qualify for an LEA License, candidates must complete a bachelor’s or higher degree in a related field of study; or have exceptional or specialized occupational experience, training, or expertise directly related to the area of assignment; and complete a criminal background check including review of any criminal offenses and clearance in accordance with Rule R277-214; and complete the educator ethics review described in Rule R277-500 within one calendar year prior to the application. An official letter of request and assurances sent to the State Superintendent may add license areas or endorsements to existing Associate or Professional Licenses.
Endorsements held by AAI employees as reported to the Superintendent:
- Commercial Art / Computer Graphics I
- Art Foundations I
- High School Art Foundations
- Individualized Lifetime Activities
- Library Media (K-12)
- Student Study Skills
- Digital Literacy
- Business Office Specialist
- Creative Coding
- Gaming Development Fundamentals
- Digital Graphic Arts
- Band I / Small Ensemble
- Service Learning
- Dance I A & B
- Dance Company
- PE Middle School Elective
Total Licensed Educators: 31
Percentage of Professional Licensed Educators: 61.30%
Percentage of Associate Licensed Educators: 19.35%
Percentage of Local Education Agency Licensed Educators: 19.35%
You may check the status of any of our licensed teachers by utilizing the Utah Educator Licensing Lookup tool.
Comprehensive Guidance Policy
(See Title I outlined below including Parent School Involvement policy, Title I Compact and Parent-School Compact)
Digital Citizenship & Safe Technology Use
Please see the Acceptable Use Policy.
Student Transportation & Safety Plan
(See Student Transportation below.)
Safe School Policy
The American Academy of Innovation (AAI) is committed to fostering an environment for students, staff, community, neighbors, and visitors that is safe, conducive to the learning process, and free from unnecessary disruption. A safe school environment includes the school and grounds during hours of operation, and during school-sponsored activities and events. The following policy and guidelines have been created for this purpose in accordance with UCA 53A-11-901-909.
School-sponsored activity or event: an activity, meeting, or location sanctioned or supported by the school, including transportation of students in school-owned or leased vehicles.
Exclusion: the removal of a student from a school program, but not necessarily from all education services, and includes:
- Suspension: a mandatory interruption of attendance or participation in a specific school or program for a period of 10 school days or less.
- Expulsion: termination of attendance or participation in a school or program for a period in excess of 10 school days by the Board according to Utah Code 53-11-905(3).
- Change in Placement: Alternative placement of a student for disciplinary or other legitimate purposes.
Imminent danger: the appearance of threatened and impending injury which would lead a reasonable and prudent person to attempt an instant defense; something which is threatening to happen at once, something close at hand, something which is close, although not yet touching, or on the point of happening. [Black’s Law Dictionary]
Habitually disruptive behavior: frequent or repeated flagrant willful disobedience, defiance of proper authority, or repeated disruptive behavior, including the use of foul, profane, vulgar, or abusive language.
Gang: a group of people who form an allegiance and engage in a range of antisocial behaviors that may include violent or other unlawful activity. These groups may have a name, turf, colors, symbols, or distinct dress, or any combination of the preceding characteristics.
Remedial discipline plan: a written plan developed by the school in consultation with the student to be disciplined, and the parent or legal guardian which may include any combination of the following or any other action discussed by the parties:
- Exclusion of the student from school for a pre-determined time or until certain conditions are met
- Specific behavior standards for the student which, when met by the student, allow for designated rights or privileges
- In-school suspension
- Community service
- Restitution for damage or harm
Parent: parent or legal guardian.
Proactive intervention strategy: a preventive strategy intended to stop or deter problem behaviors before they occur. A proactive or preventive strategy anticipates problematic behaviors and uses a predetermined set of consequences, (positive or negative), to intervene.
Proactive Strategies for Improving Student Behavior & Limiting the Exclusion of Students from School
American Academy of Innovation (AAI) shall provide parents and students with a written mission statement for the school that should be included in a school procedures handbook and provided to parents.
School administrators, teachers, and staff shall use proactive intervention strategies that anticipate problem behaviors before they occur.
Provisions Governing the Conduct of School-Age Individuals
- Be given notice of applicable rules of conduct
- Comply with applicable rules of conduct as well as all federal, state and local laws and ordinances
- Be civil and respectful to other people and obey persons in authority at the school
Students may be suspended or expelled from American Academy of Innovation for the following reasons and students may not:
- Possess, use, sell, or attempt to possess, use or sell any firearm, weapon, knife, explosive, firework, chemical weapon, flammable material, martial arts weapon or other instrument, including those which eject anything; or other material dangerous to persons or property, or any replica or facsimile of any of the above, regardless of intent and whether functional or nonfunctional.
- Also, as required by Federal Law, a student who is found to have brought a firearm, as defined under Section 921 of title 18, U.S. Code, or a real, look alike, or pretend firearm, explosive or flammable material under Utah State Law 53A-11-904 to school or to a school-sponsored activity, or to be in possession of such firearm while at school or when involved in any school-supervised activity, shall be expelled from school for a period of not less than one year.
- The Director, or school administrator, may modify the one-year expulsion requirement if the Director or review committee determines on a case-by-case basis, that a lesser penalty would be more appropriate.
- Cause, attempt, threaten or conspire to cause damage to personal or real property, or cause, attempt, threaten, or conspire to cause harm to a person or persons, individually or in groups, through:
- Arson (UCA 76-6-102)
- Larceny or stealing (UCA 76-6-403)
- Criminal mischief (UCA 76-6-106)
- Assault (UCA 76-5-102)
- Harassment (UCA 76-5-106)
- Vandalism (UCA 76-6-105)
- Hazing (UCA 76-6-106)
- Participate in any activity which violates an applicable school rule or Federal, State or local law or ordinance, or disrupts normal school proceedings or through threats of participation in any plan or conspiracy relating to the foregoing.
- Participate in conduct which threatens harm or does harm to the school, school property, person(s) associated with the school or property associated with such persons, commit an offense against an educator when the educator is acting in the course of employment, or be subject to an enhanced degree of offense as cited in Utah Code Annotated 76-3-203.2. Crimes against educators are considered to have created an imminent danger under this policy.
- Be admitted to American Academy of Innovation based on having been expelled from any school during the preceding 12 months as outlined in UCA 53A-11-904.
Procedures for Incidents Involving Weapons, Drugs, Alcohol or Imminent Danger to People or Property
The Director, or Director’s designee, shall determine if the student’s behavior created imminent danger to people or property, or if the student’s behavior, despite intent, was in violation of this policy.
If the student’s behavior created imminent danger or violated this policy, following personal notification to the student and the student’s parent or legal guardian. The student shall be suspended according to the procedure outlined below:
- Immediate student suspension:
- The student is suspended until the parent or legal guardian is available to conference with the Director.
- The student shall be prohibited from trespassing on school property.
- The school may only release the suspended student to the student’s parent or legal guardian, or other adult designated by the parent or legal authority.
- In unlawful or dangerous situations, the student may be released to law enforcement personnel.
- The Director shall make earnest efforts to contact a parent or legal guardian to schedule a conference with the student and the student’s parent or legal guardian within 24 hours of the exclusion. During the conference, the Director shall:
- Review the alleged conduct by the student and present evidence.
- Give the student an opportunity to respond and present relevant information or explanation.
- Determine whether the allegations are true by a preponderance of the evidence, and make a recommendation for action, which may include:
- Discontinuance or continuance of the exclusion (suspension or expulsion) for a specific length of time.
- Development of a remedial discipline plan for the student required under Section 53A-11-902(3), which outlines the requirements for reinstatement in the class or school; or administration’s evaluation of alternatives to excluding the student from school.
- An outline of expectations for parents or legal guardians and the school, in the student’s discipline plan and potential reinstatement, (i.e. supervision, a behavior contract, continued participation in extracurricular school activities, on-going educational services for the student, take-home or independent study assignments, mandatory school contact or evaluation.)
- Advising the student and the parent about the student’s rights and obligations, and the procedures for appeal of an adverse decision.
- At the conclusion of any exclusionary period, a conference will be held with the student and the student’s parent or legal guardian at which time a behavior contract will be developed by parents or legal guardians, student, school personnel, and other appropriate individuals.
- The Director shall document the disciplinary action taken.
Procedures for Incidents Not Involving Weapons, Drugs, Alcohol or Imminent Danger to People or Property
The Director, or Director’s designee, shall provide the student an initial opportunity to explain his behavior prior to suspension. If the immediate suspension is justified, the school should proceed with it.
The Director shall investigate and document the charges, and schedule a conference with the student and parent, or legal guardian, as soon as possible. The parent or legal guardian will be notified about the impending conference. During the conference, the Director shall:
- Explain the allegations or violation to the student.
- Discuss the evidence and provide the student with a reasonable opportunity to respond and present any relevant information.
- Take appropriate action consistent with findings made by the Director after review of the evidence and the student’s response, and with applicable school policies and state and federal law, including laws or regulations specific to students with disabilities.
- Advise the student and the parent or legal guardian about the student’s rights and obligations, and the procedures for appeal of an adverse decision.
- Discuss alternatives to suspension with the student and parent, or legal guardian, for behavior that is neither violent, unlawful, nor falls under weapons, imminent danger or drug and alcohol violations which are:
- In school suspension or alternative programs
- Parent or legal guardian supervision of student at school
- Amended schedule
- If the parent or legal guardian does not comply with the alternative to suspension requirements, the student shall be suspended in accordance with the conduct and discipline policies of the school.
- In the event of suspension or expulsion, the student shall be prohibited from trespassing on school property and attending any school event or activity.
Board of Director Level Hearings
The Director, or Director’s Designee, may refer any matter to the Board of Directors (Board) for hearing if the Director deems it advisable.
If the student or parent, or legal guardian, does not concur with the Director’s position of student misconduct involving weapons, drugs, alcohol, or imminent danger, or for student exclusion for a second or subsequent offense not involving weapons, drugs, alcohol, or imminent danger, they may take the following steps:
- The parent or legal guardian may appeal the decision by submitting a written request to the Director within 10 days after receiving notice of the decision; the Director, or the Board, shall schedule the appeal hearing within 20 days of receiving the parent’s or legal guardian’s request for hearing, and shall provide the parent or legal guardian with notice of the procedures to be followed in the hearing.
- The Director shall conduct the appeal hearing at the appointed time and place. The Director and the student may each be represented by an advocate of choice.
- At the appeal hearing, each party may make statements, question witnesses, and present relevant facts and evidence. The review committee procedures may allow for additional witnesses or affidavits to be presented.
- The conclusion of the appeal hearing that affect a student’s school attendance shall be decided within two school days following the hearing.
- All other issues shall be disposed of in writing within 30 days of the conclusion of the appeal hearing.
- These time periods may be waived upon agreement by both parties to the hearing.
- The recommendation of the Board will be submitted to the Board of Education if the recommendation to expel the student is upheld.
- Expulsion of a student may be conducted by the Director.
- The Board appeal of exclusion is the final administrative remedy. If the student and parent or legal guardian are dissatisfied with the administrative determination, an appeal to a court of law may be filed.
Responsibility of Parent for Suspended or Expelled Student
If a student is suspended or expelled from American Academy of Innovation (AAI) for more than 10 school days, the parent or legal guardian is responsible for undertaking an alternative education plan which will ensure that the student’s education continues during the period of suspension or expulsion.
The parent or legal guardian shall work with designated school officials to determine how that responsibility might best be met through private education, an alternative program offered by or through the school, or other alternatives which will reasonably meet the educational needs of the student. Costs for educational services which are not provided by the school are the responsibility of the parent.
The school will maintain a record of all suspended or expelled students and a notation of the recorded suspension or expulsion shall be attached to the individual student’s transcript (UCA 53A-11-907).
Students With Disabilities
If a student is suspended or expelled from American Academy of Innovation (AAI) for more than 10 school days, the parent or legal guardian is responsible for undertaking an alternative education plan which will ensure that the student’s education continues during the period of suspension or expulsion.
No qualified individual with a disability, shall, by reason of his or her disability, be excluded from the participation in, be denied benefits of, or otherwise be subjected to discrimination under any program or activity conducted by the American Academy of Innovation.
The parent or legal guardian shall work with designated school officials to determine how that responsibility might best be met through private education, an alternative program offered by or through the school, or other alternatives which will reasonably meet the educational needs of the student. Costs for educational services which are not provided by the school are the responsibility of the parent.
The school will maintain a record of all suspended or expelled students and a notation of the recorded suspension or expulsion shall be attached to the individual student’s transcript (UCA 53A-11-907).
STUDENTS WITH DISABILITIES
Students with disabilities are those individuals who qualify for special education and related services under Public Law 105-17, the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), and/or under Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act Amendments of 1973, and/or under the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990.
All students with disabilities enrolled at the American Academy of Innovation (AAI) are accountable for the same standards of behavior as non-disabled students, unless their Individualized Educational Program (IEP) teams have determined that their disabilities prevent adherence to these standards and have agreed upon altered standards in their respective IEP. Because students with disabilities represent a protected class of individuals, the following general provisions and/or protections apply:
- Suspension of students with disabilities for fewer than 10 days. (School administration may order the removal of a student with a disability for up to 10 consecutive days for any violation of school rules for which students without disabilities would be removed. During this type of removal, the provision of educational services is not required.)
- Suspension of students with disabilities for more than 10 days. Students may be suspended for more than 10 cumulative days per school year for separate instances for which nondisabled students would be suspended. However, such suspension must not constitute a pattern of removal and/or a change of placement. Factors such as the length of each removal, total amount of time the student is removed and proximity of removals to each other may lead to a conclusion of placement change. Regardless, beginning with the 11th cumulative day of removal, general and special education services must be provided to the student while on suspension.
- Weapons and Controlled Substance Violations. If a student with a disability carries a weapon to school or to a school function, or knowingly possesses or uses illegal drugs, or sells or solicits the sale of a controlled substance while at school or at a school function, school administration may order the removal of the student from AAI. When such a removal is contemplated, it constitutes an imminent change of placement, and parents or legal guardians must be notified and provided with a copy of their procedural safeguards under IDEA. The student’s IEP team must meet as quickly as possible following the violation, to conduct a manifestation determination. This procedure uses evidence from the student’s psycho educational evaluation(s), school conduct and classroom performance to help identify whether the student’s misbehavior was a function of his or her disability.
- Violation Related to Student’s Disability. The student’s IEP team must meet to determine an Interim Alternative Educational Setting (IAES) to which the student may be removed for up to 45 school days. The team must also conduct a Functional Behavioral Assessment (FUBA) and develop a Behavior Intervention Plan (BIP), if these have not already been accomplished. If FUBA and BIP plans have already been completed, the IEP team will review these and make revisions as appropriate. The purpose of the BIP is to reduce or eliminate the likelihood that the behavior causing the removal from school will recur in the IAES, and in the student’s school upon his or her return. In an IAES, the student must receive services which allow him or her to progress in the general curriculum and to advance appropriately toward meeting the goals specified on his or her IEP.
- Violation Not Related to Student’s Disability. If the manifestation determination procedure indicates that the weapons or drug violation was not related to the student’s disability, the student may be removed from school on the same basis as would a student without a disability. However, during this removal, the school must provide services necessary to enable the student to progress in the general curriculum and appropriately advance toward meeting the goals set forth in his or her IEP.
- Dangerousness. A due process hearing officer may order the removal of a student to an IAES for up to 45 days if, in an expedited due process hearing, he or she determines that the school has demonstrated by substantial evidence that maintaining the current placement of the student is substantially likely to result in injury to the student or to others, considers the appropriateness of the student’s current placement, considers that the school has made reasonable efforts to minimize the risk of harm in the student’s current placement, and determines that the IAES proposed by the school in concert with the student’s special education teacher meets requirements of addressing the student’s behavior and offering services so that the student can progress in his or her general and special education programs.
- Removal. The school may continue to seek removal of a student deemed dangerous by petitioning a court of local jurisdiction. The federal Office for Special Education Programs (OSEP) affirmed in Department of Education Q & A Document, Question 3, 64 Fed. Reg. 12415 (March 12, 1999), statesthat at any time, school officials may seek to obtain a court order to remove a student with a disability from school, or to change a student’s current educational placement if they believe that maintaining the student in the current educational placement is substantially likely to result in injury to the student or others.
- Reporting to Law Enforcement Authorities. School officials can report crimes committed by students with disabilities to appropriate law enforcement authorities to the same extent they do for crimes committed by nondisabled students.
- In-school Suspension. An in-school suspension would not be considered a part of the days of suspension previously addressed as long as the student is afforded the opportunity to continue to appropriately progress in the general curriculum, continue to receive the services specified on his or her IEP, and continue to participate with nondisabled students to the extent they would have in their current placement.
- Behavioral Interventions. Any behavioral intervention to be used with a student with disabilities must meet the requirements set forth by the Utah State Board of Education Special Education Rules.
Threats of Suicide
Consistent with UCA 53A-11-203, the school shall:
- Notify a parent or legal guardian if the parent’s student threatens to commit suicide.
- Notify the parents or legal guardian of each student involved in an incident of bullying, cyber-bullying, hazing, abusive conduct, or retaliation of the incident involving each parent’s student.
- Produce and maintain, consistent with Records Retention Policy, a record that verifies that the parent was notified of the incident or threat.
Appropriate Use of Physical Restrain in the Enforcement of This Policy
The use of physical restraint of students within the context of this policy is only appropriate consistent with state and federal law, UCA Sections 53A-11-801 and 76-2-401(3), and school policy on corporal punishment.
Gang Related Activity
School administrators and other school personnel designated by the administration shall have authority to identify student behavior as gang-related, and may be allowed under school policy, to treat such designated behavior as imminently dangerous to students and staff; and thus follow the PROCEDURES FOR INCIDENTS INVOLVING WEAPONS, DRUGS, ALCOHOL, OR IMMINENT DANGER TO PEOPLE OR PROPERTY (outlined above) for disciplining students involved in gang-related activities.
- In disciplining students under gang-related provisions, school administrators shall act consistently with, and be sensitive to Constitutional protections of freedom of expression and freedom of association.
- Students and parents or legal guardians should be given notice that courts have determined that the parameters of freedom of expression and freedom of association in a public-school setting are different than in society generally.
- Indices of gang-related behavior or association may include, but are not limited to:
- Advocating or promoting a gang or any gang-related activities.
- Marking school property, books, or schoolwork with gang names, slogans, or signs.
- Conducting gang initiations.
- Threatening another person with bodily injury or inflicting bodily injury on another in connection with a gang or gang-related activity.
- Aiding or abetting in an activity by a person’s presence or support such as:
- Arson (UCA 76-6-102)
- Larceny or stealing (UCA 76-6-403)
- Criminal mischief (UCA 76-6-106)
- Assault (UCA 76-5-102)
- Harassment (UCA 76-5-106)
- viii.Vandalism (UCA 76-6-105)
- Hazing (UCA 76-6-106)
- Displaying or wearing common gang apparel, common dress, or identifying signs or symbols on one’s clothing, person, or personal property that is disruptive to the school environment; and
- Communicating in any method, including verbal, non-verbal, and electronic means, designed to convey gang membership or affiliation; or
- Any combination of the preceding indices or activities.
Traffic Policy for Arrival & Departure
School administration shall develop traffic plans for student arrival and departure to ensure safe and efficient pick up and drop off of students at school, shall ensure that the plans are distributed in handbooks to students and parents, and shall enforce compliance by parents and students as appropriate.
Emergency Response Policy
The American Academy of Innovation (AAI) shall comply with R277-400 and UCA 53A-3-402 regarding the development and practice of a comprehensive Emergency Response Plan. Administration shall develop, practice, and execute the plan, which shall provide for all provisions of R277-400, including prevention, intervention, and response measures and shall prepare staff and students to respond promptly and appropriately to school emergencies.
The development of the plan shall include review by a committee made up of appropriate school and community representatives, which may include administrators, teachers, parents, community and municipal governmental officers, and fire and law enforcement personnel.
This policy and the school Emergency Response Plan shall be reviewed by the Board at least every three years.
Nutrition & Wellness Policy
Free & Reduced Meal Application
Families may apply to see if they qualify to receive a benefit of free or reduced meals. The Free and Reduced Price Meals Application is available online at Titan School Solutions. Parents may apply without logging in by clicking Apply For Meals Today and entering American Academy of Innovation as the district.
If preferred, you be access copies of the application, instructions and FAQ in both English and Español.
Applications are accepted at the Front Office or may be emailed to Danielle Cannon. If preferred, please mail to: Attn: Jana Houston Short, 5410 W South Jordan Parkway, South Jordan, UT 84009.
If your student requires dietary accommodations, please complete the Special Meals Request Form and return the signed document to the front office.
Meal Charge Policy
The Meal Charge Procedure explains how we will notify parents and guardians about money owed for student meals; the School’s procedures for providing meals if students’ accounts are delinquent; and to assure and remind parents and School employees that students will never be confronted or embarrassed about money owed for school meals. The Meal Charge Procedure was approved by the Board on 09-27-2018 and is available in more detail in the policy document.
Parent & Student Handbook
School Fees & Waivers
Pursuant to action taken by the State Legislature and subsequent rulings on that action by the State Board of Education (USBE), American Academy of Innovation (AAI) has created:
- An official fee policy; and
- A fee waiver guideline (download Fee Waiver Policy)
The Board delegates to school administration the responsibility of administering this policy.
Please see the current school year fee schedule for up-to-date fees.
Regular attendance is required by law and is a major key to a student’s success. Frequent absence of students from day-to-day classroom instruction disrupts the learning process. A quality education requires a continuity of instruction, class participation, learning experience, and study. Activities, discussions, simulations, and presentations take place every day and cannot be duplicated even by after-school instruction or make-up work.
The American Academy of Innovation (AAI) makes every effort, within the following guidelines, to encourage regular attendance for all students and to assist parents in their responsibility to have their children attend school regularly.
- Students are expected to be in attendance every school day in order to receive maximum benefit from their educational experiences.
- Parents or legal guardians have primary responsibility for regular student attendance at school, although students also share in this responsibility. Parents or legal guardians are expected to ensure that their children attend school regularly and arrive on time as well.
- Administrators shall work cooperatively with students, parents or guardians, teachers, and staff to improve student attendance. Administrators shall use earnest and persistent effort, including parent notification, to deter excessive and unexcused student absences.
- Administrators will notify a parent or guardian as well as the involved student concerning possible consequences for excessive absenteeism, including academic consequences or District Court referral. Notification will be in the form of state mandated truancy letters, phone calls, conferences, or disciplinary meetings. Habitual truant citations may be issued to students consistent with Section 53A-11-101.7.
- A student will be considered “truant” if that student has missed school at least five times without a valid excuse or, in other words, for reasons other than those authorized under school policy. A student will be considered “habitually truant” if that student is 12 years of age or older, and has missed school at least 10 times without a valid excuse.
- Administrators will meet with school-age minors and their parents or guardians to resolve disputes whenever parents or guardians contest notices of truancy, the designation of absences as “unexcused,” or the implementation of academic or disciplinary consequences due to absences. Unresolved disputes may be appealed to the Board.
- Parents must notify the Director, in advance, of legitimate absences so that the absence is not designated “unexcused.” Absences due to illness and emergency are an exception.
- An “unexcused absence” is a student’s absence from school for reasons other than a reason acceptable to the student’s parent or guardian, submitted to school in writing.
- Students may be legitimately absent from class because of an “excused absence.” An absence is designated as “excused” for illness, medical and dental appointments that cannot be reasonably scheduled after school, unusual opportunities for educational experiences beyond the classroom (pre-approved), family events such as reunions, weddings, religious events, and the like.
- An absence will also be designated as “excused” when such an absence is consistent with student’s IEP, Section 504 Accommodation Plan, even if it falls outside the regular “excused” absence category according to general school policy. Any absence over three days, even if excused by a parent, requires a doctor’s note to verify the need for a continuation of absence from school.
- Whenever possible, a student anticipating an excused absence should contact the teacher, in advance of the absence, in order to acquire guidance for study and work while absent.
- If a student has been legitimately absent from class, he or she must contact the teacher regarding make-up work when he or she returns. A younger student may utilize the help of a parent or guardian in this process.
- If a student must leave school during the school day, parents or guardians must telephone the office to confirm an early checkout prior to the student’s departure during the school day. The student must check out with the main office to record his or her name, indicate the reason for early departure, and indicate the time of early departure.
- School administration will notify teachers, in advance, of excused or unexcused absences for which the school has been given notice.
- Classroom teachers are required to record and verify daily student attendance. Classroom teachers will notify school administration if a student’s attendance is irregular or excessive. “Excessive” means more than two consecutive days, or more than five total, or if the absence seems to be “unexcused” or inexplicable.
- Individual teachers will, in accordance with school policy, develop grading and credit guidelines that promote attendance, class participation, and academic achievement.
- Individual teachers will, in accordance with school policy, record tardiness and report the excessive tardiness of any student to school administration. At the discretion of the Director, excessive student tardiness will receive academic and/or disciplinary consequences in accordance with school policy.
- School administration and individual teachers shall develop attendance plans and procedures that comply with State and Board policies. The plan and procedures shall include:
- Responsibilities for students, parents, classroom teachers, and school administrators.
- Procedures for managing attendance issues such as illness, check in/out, school activity absences, etc.
- An acceptable range of school and teacher consequences for unexcused absences and tardiness.
- Guidelines for making up work.
19. The Attendance Policy shall be available for review by parents or interested parties. School administration and the Board shall review attendance data and the Attendance Policy annually, in order to consider revisions to the policy to encourage student attendance.
Statement of Disclosure. The American Academy of Innovation (AAI) is a public charter school open to all Utah students without discrimination and on the same basis as other public schools. AAI will consider the application of any student who submits a timely application. AAI does not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, gender, ability, ethnicity, socio-economic status, proficiency in English, or national origin. Admissions, enrollment, and transfer procedures comply with Utah Code 53A-1a506.5 which governs such processes in the State of Utah. AAI charges no tuition and only those fees allowed by law.
Enrollment. The American Academy of Innovation (AAI) enrolls current students first for any new school year, and then conducts a lottery or lotteries when the number of students making application to the school exceeds the enrollment capacity in any grade, class, or program within the school.
Any student who has been expelled from any school, including AAI, during the preceding 12 months will be denied enrollment, pending the Director’s discretion according to Utah State Code 53A-11-904(3).
Preferences. While the lottery selects students at random, preference is given to the following individuals in any lottery consistent with applicable state and federal law:
- Children of faculty and staff
- Children of members of the Governing Board
- Siblings of currently enrolled students
- Sibling preference is granted beginning with the highest available grade and moving down.
- If preference is granted to a sibling, that student is placed in the next available seat on the appropriate grade list following “children of founding parents” and “children of teacher” status students.
- Sibling preference is in place only while the first-placed student remains enrolled. If the first-placed student, who qualified siblings for preferential enrollment, is withdrawn before October 1, any siblings will lose sibling preference and move back into their place in the lottery.
Lottery. If a lottery is necessary, it will begin on the date posted on the school calendar. Notifications regarding placement will be sent via email according to posted dates. If subsequent lottery drawings are required, dates will be posted and announced to the public in a timely manner.
The lottery will first choose the highest-grade applicants and proceed down the grades through the lowest, giving preference to the first drawn names and then to the siblings of those first drawn. The lottery will also determine the priority list position for all other applicants at specified grade levels. Applications for admission received after a scheduled lottery will be considered in the following lottery.
The priority list established by the lottery will remain throughout the school year, but applicants must indicate their intent to keep their application active by sending or emailing the school a letter of intent each January.
Applicants who have been accepted through the lottery must send written confirmation and submit all state and school required enrollment forms in accordance with posted instructions and deadlines in order to maintain their placement status.
Dual Enrollment. The American Academy of Innovation (AAI) offers dual enrollment to students who desire to be simultaneously enrolled at AAI as well as a home-school, or a regularly established private school under the following conditions:
- The student will have a minimum attendance at AAI of three quarters of the weekly instructional time, including instruction in Math and Language.
- The parent provides a written request with a rationale for release-time away from the school and receives authorization from the Director.
- If the student is a special education student, the IEP team will meet to determine an appropriate IEP (Individual Educational Plan).
If the student will attend school less than three quarters of the weekly instructional time, the parent shall withdraw their student from AAI, and either enroll in a private school or return to their local school and district to complete the procedures for formal home school status per Utah Code 53A-11-102(2)(a).
Bullying, Cyberbullying, Harassment, Hazing & Retaliation Policy
Bullying, cyberbullying, harassment, and hazing of students and employees are against federal, state, and local policy, and are not tolerated by the American Academy of Innovation (AAI). AAI is committed to providing all students with a safe and civil school environment in which all members of the school community are treated with dignity and respect.
To that end, the school has in place policies, procedures, and practices that are designed to reduce and eliminate bullying, abusive conduct , cyberbullying, harassment and hazing—including but not limited to civil rights violations—as well as processes and procedures to deal with such incidents.
Bullying, cyberbullying, harassment and hazing of students and/or employees by students and/or employees will not be tolerated in school. School officials have the authority to discipline students for off-campus speech that causes or threatens a substantial disruption on campus or school activities, including violent altercations, or significant interference with a student’s educational performance and involvement in school activities.
If after an investigation, a student is found to be in violation of this policy, the student shall be disciplined by appropriate measures up to, and including, suspension and expulsion, pursuant to Utah Code Ann. 53A-11-904; and in accordance with the U.S. Department of Education Office for Civil Rights, loss of participation in extracurricular activities, and/or probation.
If after an investigation, a school employee is found to have violated this policy, the employee shall be disciplined by appropriate measures up to, and including, termination.
Bullying: a school employee or student intentionally committing a written, verbal, or physical act against a school employee or student that a reasonable person under the circumstances should know or reasonably foresee will have the effect of:
- Causing physical or emotional harm to the school employee or student.
- Causing damage to the school employee’s or student’s property.
- Placing the school employee or student in reasonable fear of:
- Harm to the school employee’s or student’s physical or emotional well-being.
- Damage to the school employee’s or student’s property.
- Creating a hostile, threatening, humiliating, or abusive educational environment due to:
- The pervasiveness, persistence, or severity of the actions.
- A power differential between the bully and the target.
- Substantially interfering with a student having a safe school environment that is necessary to facilitate educational performance, opportunities, or benefits.
The conduct described above constitutes bullying, regardless of whether the person against whom the conduct is committed directed, consented to, or acquiesced in, the conduct.
In addition to the above, AAI considers bullying to be aggressive behavior that:
- Is intended to cause distress and harm.
- Exists in a relationship in which there is an imbalance of power and strength.
- Is repeated over time.
Civil Rights Violation: bullying (including cyberbullying), harassing, or hazing that is targeted at a federally protected class.
Cyberbullying: using the Internet, a cell phone, or another device to send or post text, video, or an image with the intent or knowledge, or with reckless disregard, that the text, video, or image will hurt, embarrass, or threaten an individual regardless of whether the individual directed, consented to, or acquiesced in the conduct, or voluntarily accessed the electronic communication.
Abusive Conduct: verbal, nonverbal, or physical conduct of a parent or student directed toward a school employee that, based on its severity, nature, and frequency of occurrence, a reasonable person would determine:
- Is intended to cause intimidation, humiliation, or unwarranted distress.
- Results in substantial physical or psychological harm as a result of intimidation, humiliation, or unwarranted distress.
- Exploits an employee’s known physical or psychological disability.
A single act does not constitute abusive conduct, unless it is an especially severe and egregious act that meets the standards listed above.
Federally Protected Class: any group protected from discrimination under federal law.
- Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, or national origin.
- Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex.
- Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 prohibits discrimination on the basis of disability.
- Other areas included under these acts include religion, gender identity, and sexual orientation.
Harassment: repeatedly communicating to another individual, in an objectively demeaning or disparaging manner, statements that contribute to a hostile learning or work environment for the individual. This includes rumor spreading and social aggression intended to demean and disparage another individual and that contributes to a hostile environment for that individual.
Hazing: intentionally or knowingly committing an act that:
- Endangers the physical health or safety of a school employee or student, and which involves:
- any brutality of a physical nature such as whipping, beating, branding, calisthenics, bruising, electric shocking, placing of a harmful substance on the body, or exposure to the elements.
- consumption of any food, liquor, drug, or other substance.
- other physical activity that endangers the physical health and safety of a school employee or student.
- physically obstructing a school employee’s or student’s freedom to move.
- Is done for the purpose of initiation or admission into, affiliation with, holding office in, or as a condition for, membership or acceptance, or continued acceptance, in any school or school-sponsored team, organization, program, or event.
- If the person committing the act against a school employee or student knew that the school employee or student is a member of, or candidate for, membership with a school, or school-sponsored team, organization, program, or event to which the person committing the act belongs to or participates in.
- The conduct described above constitutes hazing, regardless of whether the person against whom the conduct is committed directed, consented to, or acquiesced in, the conduct.
Parent: a student’s guardian.
Retaliation means an act of communication intended:
- as retribution against a person for reporting bullying, cyberbullying, harassment, or hazing; or
- to improperly influence the investigation of, or the response to, a report of bullying or hazing.
School: any public elementary or secondary school or charter school.
School Employee: teachers, staff, administrator and all others employed directly, or indirectly, by the school.
Volunteer: a person on the approved Volunteer List who is working at the school under the supervision of school staff.
- No AAI employee or student may engage in bullying or harassing a school employee or student:
- On school property;
- At a school-related or sponsored event
- On school transportation;
- at a school transportation stop; or
- while the school employee or student is traveling to or from a location or event described above.
- No school employee or student may engage in hazing or cyberbullying a school employee or student at any time or in any location.
- No school employee or student may engage in retaliation against:
- A school employee
- A student
- An investigator for, or witness of, an alleged incident of bullying, harassing, cyberbullying, hazing, or retaliation
- No school employee or student may make a false allegation of bullying, harassing, cyberbullying, hazing, or retaliation against a school employee or student.
- Any bullying, harassing, or hazing that is found to be targeted at a federally protected class is further prohibited under federal anti-discrimination laws, and is subject to compliance regulations from the Office for Civil Rights.
Actions Required if Prohibited Acts are Reported
- Each reported complaint will include:
- Name of complaining party.
- Name of offender, if known.
- Date and location of incident(s).
- Statement describing the incident(s), including names of witnesses, if known.
- Each reported violation of the prohibitions noted previously will be promptly investigated by a school administrator or an individual designated by a school administrator. A report of bullying, cyberbullying, hazing, harassment, and retaliation may be made anonymously, but the school will not take formal disciplinary action based solely on an anonymous report.
- Verified violations of the prohibitions noted previously shall result in consequences or penalties. Consequences or penalties may include but are not limited to:
- Student suspension or removal from a school-sponsored team or activity, including school sponsored transportation.
- Student suspension or expulsion from school or lesser disciplinary action.
- Employee suspension or termination for cause or lesser disciplinary action.
- Employee reassignment.
- Other action against student or employee as appropriate.
- The school will notify a parent if the parent or legal guardian’s student threatens to commit suicide, or if the student is involved in an incident of bullying, cyberbullying, harassment, hazing, or retaliation.
- The school will produce and maintain a record that verifies that the parent was notified of the incident or threat.
- The school will not disclose the record described above to anyone unauthorized to receive it, and will not use the record for purposes not allowed under the law.
- Compliance with the Office for Civil Rights (OCR) when civil rights violations occur:
- Once the school knows or reasonably should know of possible student-on-student bullying, cyber-bullying, harassment or hazing, the school must take immediate and appropriate action to investigate or otherwise determine what occurred.
- If it is determined that the bullying, cyber-bulling, harassment or hazing occurred as a result of the student-victim’s membership in a protected class, the school shall take prompt and effective steps reasonably calculated to:
- End the bullying, cyber-bullying, harassment, or hazing
- Eliminate any hostile environment
- Prevent its recurrence
- These duties are the school’s responsibilities even if the misconduct is also covered by a separate anti-bullying policy, and regardless of whether the student makes a complaint, asks the school to take action, or identifies the bullying, cyberbullying, harassment or hazing as a form of discrimination.
- Actions must also include, as appropriate:
- Procedures for protecting the victim and other involved individuals from being subjected to:
- Further bullying, cyberbullying, harassment, or hazing
- Retaliation for reporting the bullying, cyberbullying, harassment, or hazing
- Prompt reporting to law enforcement of all acts of bullying, cyberbullying, harassment, hazing, or retaliation that constitute suspected criminal activity.
- Prompt reporting to the Office for Civil Rights (OCR) of all acts of bullying, cyberbullying, harassment, hazing, retaliation that may be violations of student(s)’ or employee(s)’ civil rights.
- Procedures for a fair and timely opportunity for the accused to explain the accusations and defend his actions prior to student or employee discipline.
- Procedures for providing due process rights under Section 53A-8-102 (licensed staff) and local employee discipline policies prior to employee discipline or Section 53A-11-903 and local policies (students) prior to long term (more than 10 day) student discipline.
- Procedures for protecting the victim and other involved individuals from being subjected to:
The American Academy of Innovation (AAI) will promptly and reasonably investigate allegations of bullying, cyberbullying, harassment and/or hazing. The school will be responsible for handling all complaints by students and employees alleging bullying, cyberbullying, harassment, or hazing as outlined in the procedures below. It is the school’s policy, in compliance with state and federal law, that students have a limited expectation of privacy on the school’s internet system, and routine monitoring or maintenance may lead to discovery that a user has violated district policy or law. Also, individual targeted searches will be conducted if there is reasonable suspicion that a user has violated policy or law. Personal electronic devices of any student suspected of violation of the above policy will be confiscated for investigation and may be turned over to law enforcement.
All students, staff, and volunteers at the American Academy of Innovation (AAI) will receive annual training from a qualified professional regarding bullying, cyberbullying, harassment, and hazing.
- This training will address:
- Overt aggression that may include physical fighting such as punching, shoving, kicking, and verbal threatening behavior, such as name calling, or both physical and verbal aggression or threatening behavior.
- Relational aggression or indirect, covert, or social aggression, including rumor spreading, intimidation, enlisting a friend to assault a child, and social isolation.
- Bullying, cyberbullying, harassment or hazing of a sexual nature or with sexual overtones.
- Cyberbullying, including use of email, web pages, text messaging, instant messaging, three-way calling or messaging or any other electronic means for aggression inside or outside of school.
- Civil-rights violations including training and education specific to bullying based upon students’ actual or perceived identities, and conformance or failure to conform to stereotypes. Training on civil rights violations will include compliance, when civil rights violations are reported.
- Awareness and intervention skills such as social skills training.
- The school shall:
- Distribute this policy annually to employees, parents, and students.
- Require each employee, parent, and student to sign a statement annually acknowledging receipt of the policy, and keep a copy of each signed statement.
- Volunteers are under direct supervision of a licensed educator who is responsible for ensuring each volunteer is trained in the above areas. Volunteers are required to report to their supervising staff member if they are notified of a bullying, cyberbullying, hazing, harassment, or retaliation incident among students, or if they have reason to suspect such an incident. Volunteers are prohibited from engaging in bullying activities themselves and will be asked to leave the school if they are in violation of this policy.
- Pursuant to 53A-15-1301, the school will implement a youth suicide prevention program for students.
- Pursuant to 53A-1-603, all licensed educators must complete two hours of professional development of youth suicide prevention training once every license renewal cycle. To the extent possible, other programs or initiatives designed to provide training and education regarding the prevention of bullying, cyber-bullying, harassment, hazing, and retaliation will be implemented.
- In addition to training for all school employees, students, and volunteer coaches involved in any extra-curricular activity shall:
- Participate in bullying and hazing prevention training prior to participation in the extra-curricular activity.
- Repeat bullying, cyberbullying, harassment, and hazing prevention training at least every three years.
- Be informed annually of the prohibited activities list provided previously in this Policy and the potential consequences for violation of this Policy.
- 53A-11a-301 requires that this policy be developed with input from:
- School administrators
- School staff, or
- Law enforcement agencies
- All information received in a complaint; names of complainants shall be treated with the utmost confidence to the extent possible. Administrators shall notify complainant before revealing his or her name.
- A student assessment of the prevalence of bullying in school, specifically locations where students are unsafe and additional adult supervision may be required, such as playgrounds, hallways, and lunch areas, will be provided on a bi-annual basis.
- This policy does not prohibit expressive activity protected by the First Amendment of the United States Constitution. However, if off-campus speech that may constitute a bullying, cyber-bullying, hazing, or harassment incident creates a substantial disruption to the school environment, under Tinker v. Des Moines, the school may take disciplinary action against the student who initiated the speech. Factors that AAI may consider in determining whether a substantial disruption has occurred are:
- Whether there is a verbal or physical confrontation over the incident at school.
- Whether there is likely to be a verbal or physical confrontation based on evidence of a prior relationship between the victim and the student who initiated the speech.
- Whether any part of the speech that gave rise to the incident was repeated at school.
- Whether students are discussing the incident during class, or if it otherwise is disrupting schoolwork.
- Whether there is a widespread whispering campaign sparked by the off-campus incident that disrupts the school environment and students’ abilities to focus on school.
- Whether administrators who dealt with the incident were pulled from their ordinary tasks to address the incident and how much time it took out of an administrators’ day to do so.
- Whether speech similar to the off-campus speech in this incident has occurred in the past and has resulted in violence or near violence at school.
- Whether there is a negative effect on classroom activities as a result of the off-campus incident.
- Whether the speech was violent or whether there is a history of violence from the student(s) who initiated the speech. True threats are not protected by the First Amendment if it advocates “imminent” violence or unlawful conduct. Thus, a message that threatens physical harm, even if it is not meant to be serious, may not be protected by the First Amendment; and the person who utters such a message may be disciplined by the school.
Unlawful and Sexual Harassment
School will endeavor to maintain a work environment that nourishes respect for the dignity of each individual and affirms its commitment to provide a work environment free from intimidation and harassment. Sexual harassment and unlawful harassment are prohibited behavior and are against School policy. The School is committed to providing a work environment free of inappropriate and disrespectful behavior, intimidation, communications, and other conduct directed at an individual because of his or her sex, including conduct that may be defined as sexual harassment.
Applicable federal and state law defines sexual harassment as unwanted sexual advances, requests for sexual favors or visual, verbal, or physical conduct of a sexual nature when: (1) submission of the conduct is made a term or condition of employment; or (2) submission to or rejection of the conduct is used as a basis for employment decisions affecting the individual; or (3) the conduct has the purpose or effect of unreasonably interfering with the employees work performance or creating an intimidating, hostile, or offensive working environment. The following list contains examples of prohibited conduct. They include, but are not limited to:
- Unwanted sexual advances;
- Offering employment benefits in exchange for sexual favors;
- Making or threatening reprisals after a negative response to sexual advances;
- Visual conduct such as leering, making sexual gestures, or displaying sexually suggestive objects, pictures, cartoons, or posters;
- Verbal conduct such as making or using derogatory comments, epithets, slurs, sexually explicit jokes, or comments about any employee’s body or dress;
- Verbal abuse of a sexual nature, graphic verbal commentary about an individual’s body, sexually degrading words to describe an individual, or suggestive or obscene letters, notes, or invitations;
- Physical conduct such as touching, assault, or impeding and/or blocking movements;
- Retaliation for reporting harassment or threatening to report harassment.
- Sexual harassment on the job is unlawful whether it involves coworker harassment, harassment by a manager, or harassment by persons doing business with or for the School, such as clients, customers, or vendors. Other Types of Harassment Prohibited harassment on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, ancestry, physical or mental disability, veteran status, age, or any other basis protected under local, state, or federal law, includes behavior similar to sexual harassment, such as:
- Verbal conduct such as threats, epithets, derogatory comments, or slurs;
- Visual conduct such as derogatory posters, photographs, cartoons, drawings, or gestures;
- Physical conduct such as assault, unwanted touching, or blocking normal movement;
- Retaliation for reporting harassment or threatening to report harassment. Retaliation It is against School policy and unlawful to retaliate in any way against anyone who has lodged a harassment complaint has expressed concern about harassment, including sexual harassment, or has cooperated in a harassment investigation. Therefore, the initiation of a complaint, in good faith, shall not under any circumstances be grounds for disciplinary action. However, individuals who make complaints that are demonstrated to be intentionally false may be subject to disciplinary action, up to and including termination.
All managers and supervisors are responsible for:
- Implementing the School policy on harassment, which includes, but is not limited to, sexual harassment and retaliation;
- Ensuring that all employees they supervise have knowledge of and understand the School policy;
- Taking and/or assisting in prompt and appropriate corrective action when necessary to ensure compliance with the policy; and;
- Conducting themselves in a manner consistent with the policy.
Civil Rights Complaint Procedure
The School’s complaint procedure provides for an immediate, thorough, and objective investigation of any claim of unlawful or prohibited harassment, appropriate disciplinary action against one found to have engaged in prohibited harassment, and appropriate remedies for any victim of harassment. A claim of harassment may exist even if the employee has not lost a job or some economic benefit. Anyone who has been subjected to the conduct prohibited under this policy, or who has knowledge of such conduct, should report this information to his/her manager or any other manager with the School, to the Director of Human Resources or the School President as soon as possible. However, employees are not required to report any prohibited conduct to a superior who may be hostile, who has engaged in such conduct, who is a close associate of the person who has engaged in the conduct in question, or with whom they associate is uncomfortable discussing such matters. Complaints regarding harassment or retaliation may be oral or in writing. Any individual who makes a complaint that is demonstrated to be intentionally false may be subject to discipline, up to and including termination. All reported incidents of prohibited harassment will be promptly investigated. When the investigation is complete, a determination regarding the reported harassment will be made and communicated to the employee who complained and to the accused harasser. During the investigation, confidentiality will be preserved to the fullest extent possible without compromising the School’s ability to conduct a good faith and thorough investigation. If the School determines that prohibited harassment has occurred, the School will take effective remedial action commensurate with the circumstances. Appropriate action will also be taken to deter any future harassment. If a complaint of prohibited harassment is substantiated, appropriate disciplinary action, up to and including discharge, will be taken.
The School recognizes that actions that were not intended to be offensive may be taken as such. An employee
who believes that he or she has been subjected to sexual harassment by anyone is encouraged, but not required, to promptly tell the person that the conduct is unwelcome and ask the person to immediately stop the conduct. A person who receives such a request must summarily comply with it and must not retaliate against the employee for rejecting the conduct. The School encourages but does not require individuals to take this step before utilizing the Civil Rights Complaint Procedure.
- Employees must schedule one-on-one counseling sessions or meetings with minors at times and locations that promote accountability, in an open room setting without closed doors, and only if readily observable by others who may be in the room or hallway, and meet accepted standards of propriety. Clear professional boundaries must exist between minors and adults.
- Employees shall not engage in any form of unlawful, unacceptable or offensive behavior with students, parents/legal guardians, staff or visitors to the school which may include, but is not limited to (a) verbal harassment, such as derogatory comments, jokes, or slurs; (b) visual harassment, such as derogatory or sexually explicit printed material, books, magazines, posters, cards, calendars, cartoons, graffiti, drawings, notes, clothing or gestures, etc.; (c) sexual harassment or other physical conduct or contact of a sexual nature; (d) physical harassment, such as inappropriate touching, hitting, kicking, grabbing or any other form of aggressive, abrasive or harassing physical contact, etc.; (e) other behavior deemed offensive or inappropriate by school administration or generally accepted social standards.
- Unless the school has a parent or legal guardian’s knowledge and consent in the form of a written permission slip, employees shall never drive students in personal vehicles, before, during or after school unless there is a medical emergency requiring immediate medical care. When authorized to do so, employees will operate personal or school vehicles in accordance with the law, including the use of seat belts for all persons and employees will pass an online Defensive Driver Course provided by Utah State Division of Risk Management at risk.utah.gov. Employees may not use a cellular phone while transporting students.
- Extra-curricular activities, school programs, or special instruction sessions shall not be conducted by only one adult without additional adult presence and/or must be conducted at times and locations that promote accountability, in an open room setting without closed doors, and only if readily observable by others who may be in the room or hallway, and meet accepted standards of propriety.
- Employees shall not be alone in locker rooms or other dressing rooms with a single or small group of students without another adult present. Employees may not be present in these areas while students are changing unless student behavioral issues warrant the presence of adults. At least 2 (two) staff members of the same sex (and the same sex of subject students) must be present during these times. Employees may not enter restrooms, locker or dressing rooms of the opposite sex while students are present. School administrators and other staff are available to assist when difficulties arise and employees must seek such assistance when needed.
Student Discipline Policy
The Board recognizes that student discipline is essential to further the educational process and provide an environment conducive to learning. The Board authorizes the Administration to take appropriate action to preserve order among the students and staff, and to protect school property. Acts of violence, use, or possession of a weapon or facsimile, criminal behavior, and gang activity in or about school property or activities, shall be dealt with in accordance with school policy and the law. Utah Code §53A-11-901
The Administration shall take appropriate disciplinary action when students engage in activities which disrupt the educational environment, threaten or harm persons or property, or disrupt school activities. This policy shall be administered according to the following guidelines.
- Student Code of Conduct
- The school director shall develop a student code of conduct in cooperation with faculty, parents, and students. The school code of conduct shall be consistent with this policy and other school policies.
- A copy of the school policies and student code of conduct, as amended each year, shall be distributed to students and/or parents prior to, or during the first week of school each year. Students enrolling after the beginning of the AAI year shall be provided a copy of the AAI policies and student code of conduct at the time of registration. Teachers will be given a copy of the student code of conduct prior to the beginning of the AAI year.
- Dangerous or Disruptive Conduct: conduct that is defined as “dangerous or disruptive conduct” and is prohibited on school property and at/or traveling to school-sponsored activities.
- Possessing (regardless of intent), using, selling or attempting to possess, use or sell any firearm, weapon, knife, explosive device, noxious or flammable material, firework, chemical weapon, martial arts weapon or other instrument, including those which eject a projectile or substance of any kind, or any replica or facsimile of any of the above, whether functional or nonfunctional, whether designed for use as a weapon or for some other use.
- Causing, attempting, threatening or conspiring to cause damage to personal or real property; or causing, attempting, threatening or conspiring to cause harm to a person through:
- Possession or distribution of drugs or alcoholic beverages.
- Sexual harassment or fabrication of sexual harassment charges with malicious intent to defame character.
- Arson: the willful and malicious destruction of any part of a building or its contents or occupants by use of fire or explosives.
- Burglary: breaking, entering or remaining in a structure without authorization during the hours when the premises are closed to students.
- Theft, larceny, stealing: the intentional unlawful taking and/or carrying away of property belonging to/ or in the lawful possession or custody of another.
- Criminal Mischief: willful or malicious injury or damage in excess to public property or to real or personal property belonging to another.
- Battery: the unlawful and intentional touching or striking of another person against his or her will.
- Assault: placing another person in fear or apprehension of a harmful or offensive touching, whether or not touching is intended.
- Vandalism: willfully defacing, cutting, marring, injuring, damaging, or losing school or staff property. Official grade transcripts and diplomas may be withheld until the student or the student’s parent(s)/guardian has paid for the damage or made appropriate restitution.
- Gang-related Activity: dangerous or disruptive activity, which may include but is not necessarily limited to the following:
- Wearing, possessing, using, distributing, displaying or selling any clothing, jewelry, emblem, badge, symbol, sign, or other things which evidence membership in a gang.
- Using a name which is associated with or attributable to a gang; or
- Designating turf or an area for gang activities, occupation, or ownership.
- Bullying: aggressive behavior that is intentional and that involves an imbalance of power or strength. A student is being bullied or victimized when he or she is exposed, repeatedly and over time, to negative actions on the part of one or more students.
- Physical bullying: hitting and/or punching
- Verbal bullying: teasing or name calling
- Non-verbal or emotional bullying: intimidation through gestures, social exclusion and relational aggression
- Cyber-bullying: sending insulting, threatening or harassing messages by phone or computer, or electronic messaging
- Involvement in any activity which violates federal, state or local law or regulation, disrupting normal school proceedings; or causing, attempting, threatening or conspiring to cause other students to violate federal, state or local law or regulation, disrupt school proceedings, or to attempt, threaten, or conspire to do any of these. These activities include, but are not limited to the following:
- Lewdness, disorderly conduct or inappropriate public displays of affection
- Distributing obscene or pornographic materials
- Students with prior knowledge of dangerous or disruptive behavior have the duty to report such behavior to school administration. Students that fail to report such behavior are subject to appropriate disciplinary sanctions.
Due Process Procedures & Disciplinary Action
Due process is an administrative procedure followed when continued attendance of a student is in question. Fairness and reasonableness in disciplinary actions are to be maintained in all proceedings.
The following disciplinary actions shall be taken in response to any serious violation which threatens or does harm to school property; to persons associated with the school or their property; that involves the possession, control, use, or threatened use of a real or look-alike weapon, explosive, noxious or flammable material, with intent to intimidate another person or to disrupt normal school activities, regardless of where it occurs, as outlined in USC §53A-11-904(1)(3):
- Immediately suspend the student from school.
- As soon as possible following the incident, the Director or other administrator shall investigate and schedule a conference with the student and the parent or legal guardian.
- The parent or legal guardian shall be notified of the student’s right to a due process hearing, which shall be conducted according to the procedures outlined above of this policy.
- The Director shall prepare a report for the Board, which will review each instance of such action.
- The following actions will be taken for other violations of this policy:
- Immediately remove the student from the scene of the violation.
- As soon as possible following the incident, a school administrator shall investigate and document the charges, and schedule a conference with the student involved. At this conference, the student may be suspended, pending the informal parent conference.
- If the issue cannot be immediately resolved, a school administrator shall invite the parent(s) or legal guardian(s) to an informal conference where information can be presented on behalf of the student.
- This informal conference shall take place at the first reasonable opportunity. In most instances this conference should take place within three school days of the incident.
- At the informal conference, the charges shall be explained and the supporting evidence reviewed.
- After the informal conference, a school administrator shall take appropriate disciplinary action which may include, but is not limited to, one or more of the following:
- Interventions. Refer student to:
- anger management or self-discipline classes
- court or law enforcement agencies
- a guidance specialist
- Division of Family Services, Child Protective Services or another agency
- Sanctions. Develop plan which may include:
- behavior contract
- community or school service
- in-school suspension
- lunch or after-school detention
- restitution for damage or harm
- parent or legal guardian to attend class with student (requires teacher permission)
- Removal. Action taken by the school will be based upon the severity of the student’s behavior and may include:
- Short term suspension less than or equal to 10 days
- One to two-days suspension: makeup homework shall be made available to students upon return to school
- Three to less than or equal to 10 days suspension: parents decide arrangements for makeup homework during the suspension period.
- Students serving a suspension from school are prohibited from being on school property and participating in school-sponsored activities.
- Short term suspension less than or equal to 10 days
- Interventions. Refer student to:
- In accordance with state law, the Director may suspend a student for up to 10 school days.
- The parent(s) or legal guardian(s) shall be notified of the right to appeal the decision to the Governing Board.
- Prior to suspension or expulsion for repeated acts of willful disobedience, defiance of authority, or disruptive behavior which are not of such a violent or extreme nature that immediate removal is required, good faith efforts shall be made to implement a remedial discipline plan that would allow the student to remain in school such, as in-school suspension, parent or legal guardian attending classes or other alternatives.
- A security or police officer may be invited to a due process hearing or any other phase of the student disciplinary action, whenever a school administrator deems it necessary for safety.
- The policy for student disciplinary action and due process shall apply to students with disabilities only to the extent permissible under the law.
- Students with disabilities are subject to expulsion imposed for violations involving firearms, explosives, and flammable materials whether real, look-alike or pretend.
- Students with disabilities who are studying under an Individual Education Plan (IEP) may not be expelled or have their school placement changed without a hearing of the IEP committee, except for violations involving weapons, drugs or serious bodily injury (consistent with the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act of 2004).
- Right of Appeal
- A record of all expelled students shall be kept and a notation of the expulsion attached to the individual student’s grade transcript.
- In accordance with state law, if a student is suspended or expelled from school for more than 10 school days, the parent(s) or legal guardian(s) are responsible for undertaking an alternative education plan which will ensure that the student’s education continues during the period of suspension or expulsion. Costs for educational services that are not provided by the school are the responsibility of the student’s parent(s) or legal guardian(s).
- Appeals to the Governing Board
- The final determination may be appealed to the Board.
- A written appeal must be submitted to the Board Chair within 10 days of the day of suspension or expulsion.
- The Board shall review the determination, the evidence presented, and documents submitted by the student’s family.
- The Board may affirm the determination, amend the determination, or affirm the determination in part, and amend in part.
- The Board’s written decision shall be issued within 21 working days of receipt of the student’s written appeal.
- Prohibited Discipline. The American Academy of Innovation shall not use any form of the following forms of discipline:
- Corporal punishment
- Physical punishment of any kind
- Verbally abusive comments
- Any punishment that is demeaning
Membership: a student is on the current roll of American Academy of Innovation.
A student is a member of a class or school from the date of entrance at the school until official removal from the class or school due to the student having left the school.
Withdrawn: means a student has been officially removed from the school’s rolls and is no longer counted in the student membership.
- Students already enrolled and attending American Academy of Innovation are automatically re-enrolled and counted in the school’s student membership for the following school year, unless they are appropriately withdrawn. In accordance with statute; the parent or guardian of a student may withdraw their student(s) from American Academy of Innovation for enrollment in another charter school or a school district by:
- Submitting notice of intent to enroll their student(s) in the district of residence for the subsequence year to the student’s charter school no later than June 30 of the current school year.
- Submitting notice of intent to enroll their student(s) in another charter school for the subsequent school year to American Academy of Innovation enrollment, together with a letter of acceptance from the proposed charter school of attendance, no later than June 30 of the current school year, or
- Obtaining approval from both American Academy of Innovation and the school district or charter school in which attendance is sought, if the parent desires to change their student(s) enrollment during the current school year, or after June 30.
- A student shall be automatically withdrawn from American Academy of Innovation after 10 consecutive days of unexcused absence. American Academy of Innovation shall make every reasonable effort to notify the parent or legal guardian prior to the student’s 10th day of absence, to provide opportunity for correction of attendance, or to receive notification of enrollment in another charter or public school. Unless attendance is corrected, or provisions have been made for enrollment of the student in another school, the American Academy of Innovation shall immediately notify the district of residence of the withdrawal which shall enroll the withdrawn student in the resident district, and take such additional steps as may be necessary to ensure compliance with laws governing school attendance.
- Upon the withdrawal of a student from American Academy of Innovation, a Withdrawal Checklist form may be filled out by a designated member of the office staff and signed by a parent or legal guardian to ensure that all school materials are returned, and outstanding fees are settled; and that the parent or legal guardian has the same opportunity to collect their student’s personal belongings and reimbursable fees. Parents or legal guardians will also be afforded the opportunity to provide the administration with input regarding the school through completion of an exit survey.
- School Materials. All curriculum books, library books, and other materials belonging to American Academy of Innovation must be returned upon withdrawal. If items are unavailable at that time, arrangements must be made for their return to the school or reimburse the school at replacement cost.
- Fees. All outstanding fees or reimbursement for any materials which are lost or damaged by the student are due upon withdrawal; fees which are eligible to be reimbursed to the student’s parent or legal guardian may be returned via U.S. Mail within a reasonable amount of time.
- Personal Belongings: All personal belongings should be removed from the school at the time of withdrawal, however if timing is not convenient or does not allow for the parent or legal guardian to retrieve the student’s belongings, arrangements may be made to do so at a later date.
- Feedback: Comments and suggestions—both positive and negative—are important to the school’s goal of continual improvement and service. We encourage all parents or legal guardians to provide honest and constructive communication on the exit survey.
- Conduct: Staff and teachers will always treat the student and parent or legal guardian with professionalism and respect.
- Upon the withdrawal of a student from the American Academy of Innovation, the school may immediately enroll a new student from its list of applicants.
References: Utah Annotated Code 53a-1a-506.5 State Board Administrative Rule R277-419-4
Student Withdrawal Form
Provided upon request to email@example.com.
Administration shall develop and implement procedures for graduation requirements and the granting of a diploma that are consistent with the school’s charter, State law, and R277-705.
Student Dress Policy
The aim of this policy is to foster a responsible and respectful attitude toward appropriate dress. The administration of American Academy of Innovation reserves the right to modify and interpret this policy as deemed necessary to determine disruptive and unsafe attire.
It is expected that all students dress with appropriate choices to ensure the educational process is not disrupted. Dressing for school means that you wear clothes in the manner they are intended to be worn. For the purpose of safety and continuity of the instructional program, we ask your cooperation in making American Academy of Innovation a positive learning environment. We ask that you keep the dress code policy in mind when purchasing school clothes. While at school or at any school-sponsored event, students shall be dressed and groomed in a manner that will neither adversely affect the instructional program nor violate reasonable and acceptable standards of cleanliness, safety, or appropriateness as judged by the Director and administration of American Academy of Innovation.
American Academy of Innovation Dress Code
- All students shall wear clean clothing.
- Students shall wear clothes that are appropriate for school. Examples of items that would not be appropriate are mini shorts, miniskirts, bare midriffs, halter-tops, spaghetti straps, or similar clothing.
- Clothing shall cover the midriff, underwear, backs, and chest at all times. Sleeveless tops with straps that are at least two fingers wide and follow the above guidelines, are allowed.
- Skirts, dresses and shorts must be at least mid-thigh length or longer when seated. Pants with holes are allowed as long as underwear is not showing, and no skin shows through the holes above mid-thigh.
- Shoes shall always be worn to ensure personal safety and hygiene
Clothing or articles of clothing related to a group or gang which, in the judgment of the Director or staff, may provoke others to violence, disrupt school operations, or intimidate students and staff members, including, but not limited to:
- Bandannas and hair nets
- Pants worn below the waist or sagging
- Pants which do not fit without a belt
- Sunglasses worn in the building
- Hats of any kind, that cover any part of a student’s face, are not allowed within the building, except as part of a staff approved activity, or for religious, or medical purposes.
- Hoods cannot be worn in the building.
- Clothing with inappropriate messages, (e.g. alcohol, drugs, guns, cigarettes, sexually related, profane, obscene symbols/pictures), are not allowed.
- Undergarments without appropriate outer clothing or outer clothing which exposes underclothing are not allowed.
- Swimming attire
- Spiked collars, spiked wristbands, or other clothing, jewelry, or accessories that could pose a threat to student physical well-being and safety
Foreign Exchange Students
The American Academy of Innovation (AAI) recognizes the diverse and cultural advantages to enrolling students of a variety of backgrounds, ethnicities, and nationalities. Foreign exchange students enrollment is limited each year through the State Office of Education lottery and may apply for admissions at the American Academy of Innovation (53A-2-206), if properly sponsored and hosted by a foreign exchange placement company and with final approval from the Director.
The American Academy of Innovation (AAI) shall comply with confidentiality of student records as required under Federal law, State law (UCA 53A-13-301 and 302) and under (R277-487).
- An employee, student aide, volunteer, third party contractor, or other agent of the school shall protect the privacy of a student, the student’s parents, and the student’s family; and support parental involvement in the education of their children through compliance with the protections provided for family and student privacy under this part and the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act and related provisions under 20 U.S.C. Secs. 1232g and 1232h, in the administration and operation of all public-school programs, regardless of the source of funding.
- Administration shall develop procedures to ensure that all provisions of student records privacy and security are maintained.
- Administration is prohibited from administering to a student any psychological or psychiatric examination, test, or treatment, or any survey, analysis, or evaluation without the prior written consent consistent with 53A-13-301(4) of the student’s parent or legal guardian, in which the purpose or evident intended effect is to cause the student to reveal information, whether the information is personally identifiable or not, concerning the student’s or any family member’s:
- Political affiliations or—except as provided under Section 53A-13-101.1, or rules of the State Board of Education—political philosophies;
- Mental or psychological problems;
- Sexual behavior, orientation, or attitudes;
- Illegal, anti-social, self-incriminating, or demeaning behavior;
- Critical appraisals of individuals with whom the student or family member has close family relationships;
- Religious affiliations or beliefs;
- Legally recognized privileged and analogous relationships, such as those with lawyers, medical personnel, or ministers; and
- Income, except as required by law.
- This policy does not limit the ability of a student to spontaneously express sentiments or opinions otherwise protected against disclosure under this section.
Social Networking Policy
Technology & Network Protection Policy
Head Injury & Concussion Policy
In compliance with Utah State Board of Education Rule R277-614, the American Academy of Innovation (AAI) has established this Head Injury & Concussion Policy to provide education about concussion for coaches, school personnel, parents, and students. This policy outlines procedures for staff to follow in managing concussions, and outlines school policy as it pertains to return to play issues following a concussion.
AAI seeks to provide a safe return to activity for all students following any injury, but particularly after a concussion. In order to effectively and consistently manage these injuries, administration shall develop procedures to ensure that concussed students are identified, treated and referred appropriately, receive appropriate follow-up medical care during the school day and are fully recovered prior to returning to school activities.
Administration, physical education specialists and/or committees shall review this protocol annually. Any changes or modifications will be reviewed and given to athletic department staff, including coaches and other appropriate school personnel in writing. All appropriate staff shall attend a yearly in-service meeting in which procedures for managing sporting event-related concussions are discussed.
Non-Policy Tools & Procedures
Recognition of Concussion. A concussion is type of traumatic brain injury that interferes with normal function of the brain. It occurs when the brain is rocked back and forth or twisted inside the skull as a result of a blow to the head or body. What may appear to be only a mild jolt or blow to the head or body can result in a concussion. A concussion can occur even if a player or student in an activity is not knocked out or does not lose consciousness.
Common signs and symptoms of sports-related concussion
Signs (observed by others):
- Student appears dazed or stunned
- Forgets plays
- Unsure about game, score, opponent
- Moves clumsily (altered coordination)
- Balance problems
- Personality change
- Responds slowly to questions
- Forgets events prior to hit
- Forgets events after the hit
- Loss of consciousness (any duration)
Symptoms (reported by student):
- Nausea or vomiting
- Double vision, blurry vision
- Sensitive to light or noise
- Feels sluggish
- Feels “foggy”
- Problems concentrating
- Problems remembering
These signs and symptoms following a witnessed or suspected blow to the head or body are indicative of probable concussion. Any student who exhibits signs, symptoms, or behaviors consistent with a concussion (such as loss of consciousness, headache, dizziness, confusion, or balance problems) shall be immediately removed from the contest, game, or practice and shall not return to play until cleared by an appropriate health care professional.
Management and Referral Guidelines for All Staff
The following situations indicate a medical emergency:
- Any student with a witnessed loss of consciousness (LOC) of any duration should be spine boarded and transported immediately to nearest emergency department via emergency vehicle.
- Any student who has symptoms of a concussion, and who is not stable, (i.e. condition is worsening), is to be transported immediately to the nearest emergency department via emergency vehicle.
- A student who exhibits any of the following symptoms should be transported immediately to the nearest emergency department, via emergency vehicle.
- Deterioration of neurological function
- Decreasing level of consciousness
- Decrease or irregularity in respirations
- Any signs or symptoms of associated injuries, spine or skull fracture, or bleeding
- Mental status changes: lethargy, difficulty maintaining arousal, confusion or agitation
- Seizure activity
- A student who is symptomatic but stable, may be transported by his or her parents. The parents should be advised to contact the student’s primary care provider, or seek care at the nearest emergency department, on the day of the injury.
Guidelines and Procedures for Coaches and Teachers Supervising Contests & Games
- Recognize concussion:
- All educators and agents of the school should become familiar with the signs and symptoms of concussion that are described above.
- Educators and agents of AAI shall have appropriate training about recognizing and responding to traumatic head injuries, consistent with the employees’ responsibilities for supervising students and athletes.
- Remove from activity: Any student who exhibits signs, symptoms, or behaviors consistent with a concussion (such as loss of consciousness, headache, dizziness, confusion, or balance problems) shall be immediately removed from the sporting event and shall not return to play until cleared by an appropriate health care professional. When in doubt, sit ‘em out!
- Refer the athlete/student for medical evaluation
- The agent of the school is responsible for notifying the student’s parent(s) of the injury.
- Contact the parent(s) or legal guardian to inform a parent(s) of the injury. Depending on the injury, either an emergency vehicle will transport said student, or a parent or legal guardian will pick the student up at the event for transport.
- A medical evaluation is required before returning to play.
- If a student’s parent or legal guardian cannot be reached and the student is able to be sent home rather than be sent directly to medical treatment, the following apply:
- The school agent should ensure that the student will be with a responsible individual, who can monitor the student and understands the home care instructions, before allowing the student to go home.
- The school agent should continue efforts to reach a parent.
- If there is any question about the status of the student, or if the student cannot be monitored appropriately, the student should be referred to an Emergency Department for evaluation. A school agent should accompany the student and remain with the student until a parent arrives.
- The school agent shall provide for supervision of other students for whom he or she is responsible when accompanying the injured student.
Return to Play (RTP) Procedures After Concussion
- Return to activity and play is a medical decision. The student must meet all of the following criteria in order to progress to activity:
- Asymptomatic at rest and with exertion (including mental exertion in AAI) AND
- Have written clearance from the student’s primary care provider or concussion specialist (student must be cleared for progression to activity by a physician other than an Emergency Room physician, if diagnosed with a concussion).
- Once the above criteria are met, the student will be progressed back to full activity following the stepwise process detailed below. This progression must be closely supervised by a school agent. (If the school does not have an athletic trainer, then the coach must have a very specific plan to follow as directed by the athlete’s physician.)
- Progression is individualized and will be determined on a case-by-case basis. Factors that may affect the rate of progression include: previous history of concussion, duration and type of symptoms, age of the student, and sport/activity in which the student participates. An athlete/student with a prior history of concussion, one who has had an extended duration of symptoms, or one who is participating in a collision or contact sport may be progressed more slowly.
- Stepwise progression as described below:
- Complete cognitive rest. This may include staying home from school or limiting school hours and study for several days. Activities requiring concentration and attention may worsen symptoms and delay recovery.
- Return to school full-time.
- Light exercise. (This step cannot begin until the student is no longer having concussion symptoms and is cleared by a physician for further activity. At this point the athlete may begin walking or riding an exercise bike. No weightlifting.)
- Running in the gym or on the field. No helmet or other equipment.
- Non-contact training drills in full equipment. Weight training can begin.
- Full contact practice or training.
- Play in game. Must be cleared by physician before returning to play.
- The student should spend one to two days at each step before advancing to the next. If post- concussion symptoms occur at any step, student must stop the activity and the treating physician must be contacted. Depending upon the specific type and severity of the symptoms, the student may be told to rest for 24 hours, and then resume activity at a level one step below, where he or she was at when the symptoms occurred. This resumption of activity could be considerably simplified for a student injured during recess, compared to a student injured at a game or formal practice.
Potential Problem Areas
While current Utah law designates that a student may be returned to play by “an appropriate health care provider”, AAI may limit the credentials from which it will accept clearance, in its sole discretion. Generally, students will be required to provide a note from his/her health care provider before being allowed to return to play. This is a very important decision and will be made after careful consideration by the athletic director, principal, superintendent, teacher (elementary), and parent(s). The school’s liability carrier may also be consulted.
AAI administration will not allow students clearly having concussion symptoms to return to play, even if given clearance by a health care provider.
Administration of Medication to Students
The Board recognizes that some students need to receive medication during the school day and delegates to the Administration the responsibility for developing appropriate guidelines for administering medication to students in accordance with Utah Code §53A-11-601.
The Administration at the American Academy of Innovation authorizes the following guidelines for administering medication to students.
Guidelines for administration of medication
School personnel may administer prescription medication or nonprescription medication to a student during the regular school day, only when the medication has been prescribed by the student’s physician, dentist, nurse practitioner, or physician assistant, and the Director receives:
- A current, written request that medication be administered during regular school hours signed by the student’s parent(s) or legal guardian; and,
- A current, written statement signed by the prescriber of the medication that includes the following:
- A statement that administration of medication by school employees during periods when the student is under the control of the school, is medically necessary, and
- A statement that describes the method, amount, time schedule for administration, and duration of the treatment.
- The parent request and prescriber’s statement must be resubmitted at the beginning of each school year the medication is continued, and as medication is prescribed or changed. The school may administer medication based on the previous year’s parent request and prescriber’s statement for up to 10 school days when necessary, to allow the student’s parent(s) or guardian time to obtain the prescriber’s signed statement for the current year.
- Administering over-the-counter medications requires a prescribing practitioner statement as well as consent of the parent(s) or guardian. Protocol for administering over-the-counter medications is the same as that for administering prescription medications.
- Oral, topical, and inhalant medication, opiate antagonists, or injectable epinephrine may be administered by assigned school personnel in compliance with applicable law.
- All medication that is to be given at school must be furnished by the parent or guardian and delivered to the school by a responsible adult, except as otherwise allowed by law.
- All prescription medication must be in the container, labeled by the pharmacy with:
- Name of the student
- Name of the prescriber
- Name of the medication, and
- Dosage (The name of the medication and dosage indicated on the label must be identical to the name of the medication and dosage specified in the statement signed by the prescriber.)
- Nonprescription medication must be submitted in the original container and be labeled with the student’s name. (The name of the medication and dosage indicated on the label must be identical to the name of the medication and dosage specified in the statement signed by the prescriber.)
- All medication provided to the school must be kept under lock and key.
- School personnel who are assigned to administer student medication shall receive appropriate training.
- A record including the type of medication, amount, and the time and day it was administered must be kept for each student receiving medication at school. The person administering the medication must initial the record each time medication is given.
- Authorization for administration of medication by school personnel may be withdrawn by the Director, after consultation with the school nurse at any time following actual notice to the student’s parent(s) or legal guardian.
- School personnel who administer medication to students, in substantial compliance with the prescriber’s written statement, are not liable, civilly or criminally, for any adverse reaction suffered by the student as a result of taking the medication, or of the school’s discontinuing the administration of the medication under these guidelines.
- Elementary students are not to carry or self-administer medication on school premises unless it is expressly ordered by the prescriber and authorized by the parent(s). Secondary students may possess and self-administer over-the-counter (OTC), or prescription medications not to exceed an 8-hour dosage, or medications only dispensed in multi-dose containers.
- Unused medication must be picked up by a responsible adult within two weeks following the last dose administered. Medication remaining at the school after this time should be destroyed.
- Distribution of any drug or medication from one student to another will be considered Dangerous and Disruptive Conduct, and shall be dealt with according to the provisions of applicable policy.
- Sunscreen and Lip Balm are not considered medication.
Electronic Devices on Campus
Extra Curricular Activities & Clubs
The American Academy of Innovation (AAI) shall ensure that students have a range of extracurricular activities and clubs in which to participate if they choose, consistent with the school’s charter and State law.
Participation in extracurricular activities at students’ boundary school. Administration shall ensure that procedures allow students to participate in extracurricular activities at students’ district school of residence consistent with R277-494. AAI shall pay any non-waived participation fees for such student participation.
Reciprocity of Credits
American Academy of Innovation (AAI) shall accept all credits or coursework from schools and supplemental education providers accredited by the Northwest Accreditation Commission, properly authorized public schools both in and out of Utah, and accredited distance learning schools consistent with R277-705.
- AAI accepts credits and grades awarded to students from schools or providers accredited by the Northwest Accreditation Commission or approved by the Utah State Board of Education without alteration.
- Timely documentation is required for transfer students of all credits requested for acceptance.
AAI may accept credit from non-accredited sources, course work, or education providers consistent with R277-705, upon satisfactory demonstration that:
- There is satisfaction of coursework by demonstrated competency, as evaluated by AAI;
- Review of student work or projects by administrators; and
- Satisfaction of electronic or correspondence coursework, as approved administration.
The Director has the final decision-making authority for the awarding of credit and grades from non-accredited sources- consistent with state law, due process, and R277-705.
Offsite Credit Evaluation Policy
Purpose: In order to preserve the academic integrity of American Academy of Innovation and perpetuate the awarding of credit based on competency rather than seat time, the Offsite Credit Evaluation Policy outlines the limitations and stipulations associated with submission of offsite work and learning for high school credit. Portfolios may be submitted to show proof of any grade completion or to earn high school course credit.
Policy: Students enrolled in American Academy of Innovation may be offered credit for previous homeschool, offsite, or independent study courses that are consistent with the high academic standards, competency based education initiative, and policies of AAI. AAI recognizes and values all offsite learning used to enrich students’ academic experience. The following rules guide the approval of offsite work for credit:
- All offsite work must be organized and presented as a portfolio.
- Portfolio review takes 7-10 business days. Incomplete portfolios will not be reviewed, but may be resubmitted when complete.
- Portfolio credit will only be awarded for work done within the last two years.
- Portfolio credit will be awarded in one-credit and half-credit increments only. (Portfolios with less than ½ credit worth of the applicable discipline standards will not be accepted for credit.)
- AAI will review portfolios upon initial enrollment and for actively enrolled students.
- AAI will award a maximum of 8 credits for portfolio work.
- Students cannot receive more than one credit per course. Portfolios may be submitted for multiple courses.
- AAI will evaluate the portfolio, but will not grade individual portfolio activities. All activities (assignments, assessments, projects and papers) should be graded by a supervisor or teacher who worked with the student during the activity. Please note that portfolios that are based upon music lessons or participation in a sport will not be accepted for credit without the necessary assessments and teacher evaluation.
- Work samples and assessments submitted to AAI need to include marks and or comments indicating that they were assessed by a supervisor or teacher. Work submitted without assessment or feedback will not be eligible for credit evaluation.
- AAI reserves the right to accept, review, revoke and/or hold any credits from portfolios when it is deemed necessary to preserve the academic integrity of AAI.
Process: Although AAI is committed to reviewing and awarding credit based on demonstrated competence, we recognize the need for reasonable uniformity in the procedural aspects of this policy. Therefore, interested recipients should:
- Follow the approved offsite credit evaluation templates available at the school or downloadable from the website. Portfolios submitted that do not use AAI’s template will take longer to approve and may require additional documentation.
- Complete, assemble, and submit the portfolio according to instructions included with the template. (Portfolios will not be returned, so please make copies for your own records.)
Please see the Offsite Credit Evaluation Template.
The American Academy of Innovation (AAI) shall develop procedures that ensure that when students are transported by employees, volunteers, or transportation firms under a contract with the school, that such transportation is done in compliance with applicable laws, protects the school from unnecessary liability, and ensures appropriate levels of student safety. Important to school’s view of the procedures include:
- Any party that transports students on behalf of the school shall have adequate insurance.
- Volunteers and employees of the school that transport students on behalf of the school shall complete a defensive driving course prior to transporting students, and shall complete said course at least every two years.
- All vehicles owned by the school, and any transportation system operated by the school, shall comply with R277-601; and administration shall develop procedures for such operations consistent with that rule.
Please see Special Education Procedures.
Education of Homeless Students
Administration shall develop and implement procedures to ensure that homeless students who apply to attend American Academy of Innovation (AAI), consistent with the school’s enrollment and lottery policies, may immediately enroll with full participation, even if they are unable to produce records which may include medical records, birth certificates, school records, or the proof of residency normally required for enrollment consistent with R277-616.
Student Search Policy
In order to ensure student safety and protect individual student rights, the administration shall develop and implement procedures related to the search of student property.
Procedures shall provide:
- That a search may only occur upon reasonable suspicion that a student’s safety is at risk, or that a student is in possession of an item or items prohibited by school safety or discipline policy, such as controlled substances or weapons;
- That students are protected from unreasonable intrusion;
- That faculty and staff are appropriately trained in the fair and consistent implementation of student search procedures.
Administration shall develop and implement procedures consistent with R277-713 regarding concurrent enrollment courses, standards, and enrollment to provide a challenging college-level and productive secondary school experience—particularly in the senior year—and to provide transition courses that can be applied to post-secondary education.
The procedures shall ensure that:
- An appropriate assessment shall be administered to the student prior to participation in all concurrent mathematics and English courses.
- Each student participating in the concurrent enrollment program shall have a current Student Education Occupation Plan (SEOP) on file at the participating school, as required under Section 53A-1a-106(2)(b).
- Advice and information shall be provided to a prospective or current high school student who participates in the concurrent enrollment program, consistent with Section 53A-15-101. Advising shall include providing information on general education requirements at Utah System of Higher Education (USHE) institutions and assisting students or parents to efficiently choose concurrent enrollment courses to avoid duplication and excess credit hours.
- Secondary students may be assessed a one-time per institution admissions fee required for full- time or part-time students, in concurrent enrollment courses. No additional application fee may be charged.
- A secondary student may be charged partial tuition up to $30 per credit hour for each concurrent enrollment course for which the student receives college credit. A student shall receive high school credit for a concurrent enrollment course that is consistent with the policies for awarding credit for graduation.
- Funding received under the program shall be spent consistent with the intent and requirements of the program.
- Local education agencies (LEA) will give equivalent concurrent enrollment high school credit as they see fit.
Dissemination of Information About Juvenile Offenders
The dissemination of any information about students’ juvenile offenses or charges shall be consistent with the Family Educational Rights & Privacy Act (FERPA) and Government Records Access & Management Act (GRAMA), including applicable time periods and protection of confidential information.
- Only the Director and teachers who have instructional or activity oversight of the student shall have authority to receive confidential information about students’ juvenile offenses or charges.
- A dispute regarding the dissemination of information shall be decided in favor of a student’s rights to privacy, except in the event of apparent imminent danger to persons or property.
Statewide Online Education Program
The American Academy of Innovation (AAI) shall facilitate student enrollment in the Statewide Online Education Program (SOEP) established under UCA 53A-15-1201 through 53A-15-1217, with any and all eligible providers selected by eligible students consistent with course credit limits.
The administration shall develop and implement procedures consistent with this policy.
Alternative Language Services
Services at the American Academy of Innovation (AAI) will be offered to students identified as those who qualify for such services.
Instructional Materials Adoption and Review
The purpose of AAI’s Instructional Material Adoption and Review policy is to provide our teachers, students, and families with the very best available core-related materials and to eliminate instructional materials that violate Utah Administrative Code or Utah State Board Rules. AAI recognizes the need to search out and vet instructional material to ensure such material is suitable to the vision, mission, and values of AAI, the state of Utah, and applicable state and federal law. Currently the Utah State Board of Education (refer to Utah Code, Chapter 53A-14-101-106):
- Recommends instructional materials for public schools after receiving adoption recommendations from the Utah State Instructional Materials Commission
- Awards contracts for instructional materials to instructional materials publishers
- Set policies for instructional materials adoption procedures after receiving recommendations from the Utah State Instructional Materials Commission
- Appoint members of the Utah State Instructional Materials Commission and set the term of office of each member
The Instructional Materials Adoption Process in Utah maintains local autonomy in the choice of instructional materials by providing AAI with a general list of approved materials. AAI utilizes the state approved materials but also seeks out curriculum through this policy.
Instructional materials are the resources used by educators to promote student learning.
The design and implementation of any instructional material and programming will be consistent with the AAI’s adopted mission, vision, values, and applicable goals, state laws, and State Board of Education rules. AAI will regularly develop and update informal instructional guides with the assistance of applicable content specialists and industry experts to provide a unified direction of action and to meet changing needs of students and educators. Instructional materials are a critical component of a coherent instructional program and should be:
- Aligned to the Utah Core Standards or specified course standards and AAI Board Policy
- Supported by generally accepted standards of evidence
- Accurate and factual
- Age appropriate
- Reflect contributions from authors, artists, or appropriate experts in the field that represent diverse viewpoints, ethnic and cultural backgrounds, and experiences
- Contributes to a balanced perspective
- Aligned to support personalized competency-based learning (PCBL), project based learning (PBL), and experiential learning
- Compatible with AAI technology systems and infrastructure
- In compliance with Children’s Internet Protection Act (CIPA) and the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA)
- Accessible to all students with scaffolding
- School-wide instructional materials are selected by a curriculum selection committee and approved by the Administration. Under the direction of the Executive Director, the Curriculum Selection Committee will include representation from the following: Academic Director or designee, applicable discipline teacher, teacher coach or designee, and other school as appropriate.
- Course-Level instructional materials are selected at the school level for core, elective, concurrent enrollment, and Career and Technical Education (CTE) courses. The Academic Director will preview, pilot, and review the proposed course materials and provide guidance on implementation and usage.
- Supplemental Instructional Materials are approved by the Academic Director or designee.
- Teacher-selected materials are selected by individual teachers for use as part of a particular lesson or lessons. It is recommended that teachers have a colleague or administrator review materials to ensure appropriateness for student use in the classroom.
- All materials selected should be evaluated using the Instructional Materials Selection/Review Form (attached).
- Sex Education Materials are selected and approved in accordance with R277-474 (5)(2).
It is the policy of American Academy of Innovation to review all school-wide, course-level, supplemental, teacher-selected, and Sex Education materials annually. Such review will be made by classroom teachers, curriculum coaches, the academic director, and the librarian as pertinent to the scope and type of curriculum.
Additionally, it is the policy of AAI to allow parents/guardians and students the opportunity to review instructional materials and have access to information about the curriculum, including academic standards to be achieved, instructional materials and assessment techniques.
Upon request by a parent/guardian or student, the district will make available existing information about the curriculum, including academic standards to be achieved, instructional materials and assessment techniques. The following conditions apply to all parental/guardian or student requests:
- The request must be in writing, setting forth the specific material being sought for review.
- The written request must be sent to the Executive Director.
- The Executive Director or their designee will respond to the parent/guardian or student within ten (10) school days by designating the time and location for the review.
- Reviews are to occur in person whenever possible.
- AAI will take precautionary action to protect its materials from loss, damage, or alteration and to ensure the integrity of the files, including, but not limited to a designated employee present to monitor the review of the materials.
- No parent/guardian or student shall be permitted to remove the material provided for review or photocopy the contents of such file. The taking of notes by parents/guardians and students is permitted.
Under federal law, the rights provided to parents/guardians to inspect any instructional materials used as part of the student’s educational curriculum transfer to the student when the student turns eighteen (18) years old or is an emancipated minor. These rights do not transfer under state law; therefore, parents/guardians retain their rights to access information about the curriculum and to review instructional materials.
In accordance with 53G-10-205 parents/Guardians of currently enrolled students will have the right to have their children excused from specific instruction which conflicts with their religious beliefs or right of conscience.
Data & Compliance
Notification of FERPA Rights
American Academy of Innovation (AAI) complies with the Family Education Rights & Privacy Act (FERPA), which grants parents and students who are at least 18 years of age (“eligible students”) certain rights with respect to student’s education records. This document details those rights:
- The right to inspect and review the student’s education records within 45 days after the day the AAI receives a request for access. Parents who wish to inspect their child’ educational records, or eligible students who wish to inspect their education records, should submit to AAI’s Director a written request that identifies the records they wish to inspect. The Director will make arrangements for access and notify the parent or eligible student of the time and place where the records may be inspected.
- The right to request the amendment of the student’s education records that the parent or eligible student believes are inaccurate, misleading, or otherwise in violation of the student’s privacy rights under FERPA; parents or eligible students who wish to ask AAI to amend the pertinent education record should write to AAI’s Director, clearly identifying the part of the record they want to be changed, and specify why it should be changed. If AAI’s Director decides not to amend the record as requested by the parent or eligible student, AAI’s Director will notify the parent or eligible student of the decision and of their right to a hearing regarding the request for amendment. Additional information regarding the hearing procedures will be provided to the parent or eligible student when notified of the right to a hearing.
- The right to provide written consent before the school discloses Personally Identifiable Information (PII) from the student’s education records, except to the extent that FERPA authorizes disclosure without consent.
- One exception, which permits disclosure without consent, is disclosure to school officials with legitimate educational interests. The criteria for determining who constitutes a school official and what constitutes a legitimate educational interest is set forth in the school’s or school district’s annual notification for FERPA rights.
- A school official typically includes a person employed by the school or school district as an administrator, supervisor, instructor, or support staff member (including health or medical staff and law enforcement unit personnel), or a person serving on the school board. A school official also may include a volunteer, contractor, or consultant who, while not employed by the school, performs an institutional service or function for which the school would otherwise use its own employees, and who is under the direct control of the school with respect to the use and maintenance of PII from education records, such as an attorney, auditor, medical consultant, or therapist; a parent or student volunteering to serve on an official committee, (such as a disciplinary or grievance committee); or a parent, student, or other volunteer assisting another school official in performing his or her tasks. A school official typically has a legitimate educational interest if the official needs to review an education record in order to fulfill his or her professional responsibility.
- Upon request, the school discloses education records, without consent, to officials of another school or school district in which a student seeks or intends to enroll, or is already enrolled, if the disclosure is for purposes of the student’s enrollment or transfer. AAI will make a reasonable attempt to notify the parent or student of the records request unless the request is initiated by the parent or eligible student.
- FERPA permits the disclosure of PII from students’ education records, without consent of the parent or eligible student, if the disclosure meets certain conditions found in §99.31 of the FERPA regulations. Except for disclosures to school officials, disclosures related to some judicial orders or lawfully issued subpoenas, disclosures of directory information, and disclosures to the parent or eligible student; §99.32 of the FERPA regulations requires the school to record the disclosure. Parents and eligible students have a right to inspect and review the record of disclosures. AAI may disclose PII from the education records of a student without obtaining prior written consent of the parents or the eligible student as follows:
- To other school officials, including teachers, within the educational agency or institution whom the school has determined to have legitimate educational interests. This includes contractors, consultants, volunteers, or other parties to whom the school has outsourced institutional services or functions, provided that the conditions listed in §99.31(a)(1)(i)(B)(1) – (a)(1)(i)(B)(3) are met. (§99.31(a)(1))
- To officials of another school, school system, or institution of postsecondary education where the student seeks or intends to enroll, or where the student is already enrolled if the disclosure is for purposes related to the student’s enrollment or transfer, subject to the requirements of §99.34. (§99.31(a)(2))
- To authorized representatives of the U. S. Comptroller General, the U. S. Attorney General, the U.S. Secretary of Education, or State and local educational authorities, such as the State Educational Agency (SEA) in the parent or eligible student’s state. Disclosures under this provision may be made, subject to the requirements of §99.35, in connection with an audit or evaluation of Federal- or State-supported education programs, or for the enforcement of or compliance with Federal legal requirements that relate to those programs. These entities may make further disclosures of PII to outside entities that are designated by them as their authorized representatives to conduct any audit, evaluation, or enforcement or compliance activity on their behalf, if applicable requirements are met. (§§99.31(a)(3) and 99.35)
- In connection with financial aid for which the student has applied or which the student has received, if the information is necessary for such purposes as to determine eligibility for the aid, determine the amount of the aid, determine the conditions of the aid, or enforce the terms and conditions of the aid. (§99.31(a)(4))
- To State and local officials or authorities to whom information is specifically allowed to be reported or disclosed by a State statute that concerns the juvenile justice system and the system’s ability to effectively serve, prior to adjudication, the student whose records were released, subject to §99.38. (§99.31(a)(5))
- To organizations conducting studies for, or on behalf of, the school, in order to: (a) develop, validate, or administer predictive tests; (b) administer student aid programs; or (c) improve instruction, if applicable requirements are met. (§99.31(a)(6))
- To accrediting organizations to carry out their accrediting functions. (§99.31(a)(7))
- viii.To parents of an eligible student if the student is a dependent for IRS tax purposes. (§99.31(a)(8))
- To comply with a judicial order or lawfully issued subpoena if applicable requirements are met. (§99.31(a)(9))
- To appropriate officials in connection with a health or safety emergency, subject to §99.36. (§99.31(a)(10)
- Information the school has designated as “directory information” if applicable requirements under §99.37 are met. (§99.31(a)(11))
- To an agency caseworker or another representative of a state or local child welfare agency, or tribal organization who is authorized to access a student’s case plan when such agency or organization is legally responsible, in accordance with state or tribal law, for the care and protection of the student in foster care placement. (20 U.S.C. §1232g(b)(1)(L))
- xiii.To the Secretary of Agriculture or authorized representatives of the Food and Nutrition Service for purposes of conducting program monitoring, evaluations, and performance measurements of programs authorized under the Richard B. Russell National School Lunch Act or the Child Nutrition Act of 1966, under certain conditions. (20 U.S.C. §1232g(b)(1)(K).
- The right to file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education concerning alleged failures by AAI to comply with the requirements of FERPA. The name and address of the Office that administers FERPA are:
Family Policy Compliance Office
U.S. Department of Education
400 Maryland Avenue, SW
Washington, DC 20202
Notification of Rights under PPRA
American Academy of Innovation (AAI) complies with the Protection of Pupil Rights Amendment (PPRA), which affords parents of elementary and secondary students certain rights regarding the conduct of surveys, collection and use of information for marketing purposes, and certain physical exams. These rights transfer from the parents to a student who is 18 years old or an emancipated minor under state law. These rights include, but are not limited to, those listed in this document.
- The right to consent before students are required to submit to a survey that concerns one or more of the following protected areas, (“Protected Information Survey”), if the survey is funded in whole or in part by a program of the U.S. Department of Education (ED):
- Political affiliations or beliefs of the student or students’ parent(s);
- Mental or psychological problems of the student or students’ family;
- Sexual behavior or attitudes;
- Illegal, anti-social, self-incriminating, or demeaning behavior;
- Critical appraisals of others with whom respondents have close family relationships;
- Legally recognized privileged relationships, such as with lawyers, doctors, or ministers;
- Religious practices, affiliations, or beliefs of the student or students’ parent(s); or
- Income, other than as required by law to determine program eligibility.
- The right to receive notice, and an opportunity to opt a student out of any of the following:
- Any other protected information survey, regardless of funding;
- Any non-emergency, invasive physical exam or screening required as a condition of attendance, administered by the school or its agent, and not necessary to protect the immediate health and safety of a student, except for hearing, vision, or scoliosis screenings, or any physical exam or screening permitted or required under state law; and,
- Activities involving the collection, disclosure, or use of personal information collected from students for marketing or to sell or otherwise distribute the information to others. (This does not apply to the collection, disclosure, or use of personal information collected from students for the exclusive purpose of developing, evaluating, or providing educational products or services for, or to, students or educational institutions.)
- The right to inspect, upon request and before administration or use:
- Protected information surveys of students and surveys created by a third-party.
- Instruments used to collect personal information from students for any of the above marketing, sales, or other distribution purposes; and
- Instructional material used as part of the educational curriculum.
AAI has developed and adopted policies, in consultation with parents, regarding these rights, as well as arrangements to protect student privacy in the administration of protected information surveys and the collection, disclosure, or use of personal information for marketing, sales, or other distribution purposes. AAI will directly notify parents of these policies at least annually at the start of each school year, and after any substantive changes.
AAI will also directly notify, such as through U.S. Mail or email, parents of students who are scheduled to participate in the specific activities or surveys noted below, and will provide an opportunity for the parent to opt his or her child out of participation of the specific activity or survey. AAI will make this notification to parents at the beginning of the school year if the school has identified the specific or approximate dates of the activities or surveys at that time. For surveys and activities scheduled after the school year starts, parents will be provided reasonable notification of the planned activities and surveys listed below and be provided an opportunity to opt their child out of such activities and surveys. Parents will also be provided an opportunity to review any pertinent surveys. Following is a list of the specific activities and surveys covered under this direct notification requirement:
- Collection, disclosure, or use of personal information collected from students for marketing, sales, or other distribution.
- Administration of any protected information survey not funded in whole or in part by ED.
- Any non-emergency, invasive physical examination or screening as described above.
Parents who believe their rights have been violated may file a complaint with:
Family Policy Compliance Office
U.S. Department of Education
400 Maryland Avenue, SW
Washington, DC 20202
Directory of Information Notice
The Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) requires that the American Academy of Innovation (AAI), with certain exceptions, obtain your written consent prior to the disclosure of personally identifiable information from your student’s records. However, AAI may disclose appropriately designated “directory information” without written consent, unless you have advised the School to the contrary in accordance with School procedures.
AAI has designated the following information as “directory information”:
- Student’s name
- Telephone listing
- Date of birth
- Participation in officially recognized activities and sports
- Enrollment status
- Honors and awards
- Date of graduation
Directory information may be used to publish school directories, yearbooks, class/team rosters, honor roll lists, graduation lists, and other school purposes, which would not normally be considered an invasion of student privacy.
Directory information may also be disclosed to outside agencies. Outside organizations may include, but are not limited to, companies that manufacture class rings, publish yearbooks, or take school pictures. In addition, two federal laws require local educational agencies receiving assistance under the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 (ESEA) to provide military recruiters and higher education recruiters, upon request, with three directory information categories – names, addresses, and telephone listings of high school juniors and seniors – unless parents have advised the local school that they do not want their student’s information disclosed without their prior written consent.
If you do not want AAI to disclose directory information from your student’s educational records without your prior written consent, you must notify the School Director in writing within fourteen days after the beginning of the school year.
Student Data Collection Notice
Necessary Student Data
Necessary student data means data required by state statute or federal law to conduct the regular activities of the school.
- Student Name, Date of birth, and Sex
- Parent and student contact information and Custodial parent information
- A student identification number (including the student’s school ID number and the state-assigned student identifier, or SSID)
- Local, state, and national assessment results or an exception from taking a local, state, or national assessment (click here for more information on assessments)
- Courses taken and completed, credits earned, and other transcript information
- Course grades and grade point average
- Grade level and expected graduation date or graduation cohort
- Degree, diploma, credential attainment, and other school information
- Attendance and mobility
- Drop-out data
- Immunization record or an exception from an immunization record
- Race, Ethnicity, or Tribal affiliation
- Remediation efforts
- An exception from a vision screening required under Section 53G-9-404 or information collected from a vision screening described in Utah Code Section 53G-9-404
- Information related to the Utah Registry of Autism and Development Disabilities (URADD), described in Utah Code Section 26-7-4
- Student injury information
- A disciplinary record created and maintained as described in Utah Code Section 53E-9-306
- Juvenile delinquency records
- English language learner status
- Child find and special education evaluation data related to initiation of an Individual Education Plan (IEP)
Optional Student Data
We may only collect optional student data with written consent from the student’s parent or from a student who has turned 18 years of age.
- Information related to an IEP, or needed to provide special needs services
- Biometric information used to identify the student
- Information required for a student to participate in an optional federal or state program (e.g., information related to applying for free or reduced lunch)
Certain sensitive information on students collected via a psychological or psychiatric examination, test, or treatment, or any survey, analysis, or evaluation will only be collected with parental consent. You will receive a separate consent form in these cases. See our Protection of Pupil Rights Act (PPRA) notice for more information.
We will not collect a student’s social security number or criminal record, except as required by Utah Code Section 78A-6-112(3).
We will only share student data in accordance with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), which generally requires written parental consent before sharing student data. FERPA includes several exceptions to this rule, where we may share student data without parental consent. For more information on third parties receiving student information from us, see our Metadata Dictionary.
Student data will be shared with the Utah State Board of Education via the Utah Transcript and Records Exchange (UTREx). For more information about UTREx and how it is used, please visit the Utah State Board of Education’s Information Technology website.
Benefits, Risks, and Parent Choices
The collection, use, and sharing of student data has both benefits and risks. Parents and students should learn about these benefits and risks, and make choices regarding student data accordingly. Parents are given the following choices regarding student data:
- Choice to request to review education records of their children and request an explanation or interpretation of the records (see our annual FERPA notice for more information)
- Choice to contest the accuracy of certain records, (see our annual FERPA notice for more information), potentially leading to the correction, expungement or deletion of the record
- Choice to opt into certain data collections (see the section above on optional data collections)
- Choice to opt-out of certain data exchanges
- Information that has been classified as directory information (see our directory information notice for more information)
- Parents of students with an IEP may have their information shared with the Utah Registry of Autism and Developmental Disabilities (URADD). If included in this data exchange, parents will receive a separate notice within 30 days of the exchange, informing them of their right to opt-out, per Utah Code Section 53E-9-308(6)(b).
- Choice to file a complaint if you believe the school or its agents are violating your rights under FERPA, or Utah’s Student Data Protection Act.
If you have a complaint or concern, we recommend starting locally and then escalating to the state and US Department of Education.
|American Academy of Innovation||Heather Martin, Registrar|
|The Utah State Board of Education||Report your concern with the USBE hotline.|
|The US Department of Education||Report your concern here.|
Storage and Security. In accordance with Board Rule R277-487-3(14), we have adopted a cybersecurity framework called the CIS Controls.
Data Governance Plan
The American Academy of Innovation (AAI) takes its responsibility toward student data seriously. This governance plan incorporates the following Generally Accepted Information Principles (GAIP):
Risk: There is a risk associated with data and content. The risk must be formally recognized, either as a liability or through incurring costs to manage and reduce the inherent risk.
Due Diligence: If a risk is known, it must be reported. If a risk is possible, it must be confirmed.
Audit: The accuracy of data and content is subject to periodic audit by an independent body.
Accountability: An organization must identify parties that are ultimately responsible for data and content assets.
Liability: The risks in information means there is a financial liability inherent in all data or content that is based on regulatory and ethical misuse or mismanagement.
Data Maintenance & Protection Policy
AAI recognizes that there are risks and liability in maintaining student data and other education-related data, and will incorporate reasonable data industry best practices to mitigate this risk.
Process. In accordance with R277-487, AAI shall do the following:
- Designate an individual as an Information Security Officer
- Adopt the CIS Controls or comparable means
- Report to the USBE by October 1 each year regarding the status of the adoption of the CIS controls or comparable means, and future plans for improvement
Roles & Responsibilities Policy
AAI acknowledges the need to identify parties who are ultimately responsible and accountable for data and content assets. These individuals and their responsibilities are as follows:
- authorizes and manages the sharing, outside of the student data manager’s education entity, of personally identifiable student data for the education entity as described in this section
- provides for necessary technical assistance, training, and support
- acts as the primary local point of contact for the state student data officer
- ensures that the following notices are available to parents:
- annual FERPA notice (see 34 CFR 99.7),
- directory information policy (see 34 CFR 99.37),
- survey policy and notice (see 20 USC 1232h and 53E-9-203),
- data collection notice (see 53E-9-305)
Information Security Officer
- Oversees adoption of the CIS controls
- Provides for necessary technical assistance, training, and support as it relates to IT security
Data Support Contractors
- Oversee and maintain internal network operations
- Provide active support for data security matters
Training and Support Policy
AAI recognizes that training and supporting educators and staff regarding federal and state data privacy laws is a necessary control to ensure legal compliance.
- The Data Manager will ensure that educators who have access to student records will receive an annual training on the confidentiality of student data to all employees with access to student data. The content of this training will be based on the Data Sharing Policy.
- By October 1 each year, the Data Manager will report to USBE regarding the completion status of the annual confidentiality training, and provide a copy of the training materials used.
- The Data Manager shall keep a list of all employees who are authorized to access student education records after having completed a training that meets the requirements of 53E-9-204.
In accordance with the risk management priorities of AAI, AAI will conduct an audit of:
- The effectiveness of the controls used to follow this data governance plan; and
- Third-party contractors, as permitted by the contract described in 53E-9-309(2).
Data Sharing Policy
There is a risk of redisclosure whenever student data is shared. AAI shall follow appropriate controls to mitigate the risk of redisclosure, and to ensure compliance with federal and state law.
- The Data Manager shall approve all data sharing or designate other individuals, including administrators, teachers, and special education personnel, who have been trained on compliance requirements with FERPA.
- For external research, the Data Manager shall ensure that the study is approved by AAI’s Board of Directors, and follows the requirements of FERPA’s study exception described in 34 CFR 99.31(a)(6).
- After sharing from student records, the Data Manager shall ensure that an entry is made in AAI Metadata Dictionary to record that the exchange happened.
- After sharing from student records, the Data Manager shall make a note in the student record of the exchange in accordance with 34 CFR 99.32.
Expungement Request Policy
AAI recognizes the risk associated with data following a student year after year, that could be used to mistreat the student. AAI shall review all requests for records expungement from parents, and make a determination based on the following procedure.
The following records may not be expunged: grades, transcripts, a record of the student’s enrollment, assessment information.
The procedure for expungement shall match the record amendment procedure found in 34 CFR 99, Subpart C of FERPA.
- If a parent believes that a record is misleading, inaccurate, or in violation of the student’s privacy, they may request that the record be expunged.
- AAI shall decide whether to expunge the data within a reasonable time after the request.
- If AAI decides not to expunge the record, they will inform the parent of their decision, as well as their right to an appeal hearing.
- AAI shall hold the hearing within a reasonable time after receiving the request for a hearing.
- AAI shall provide the parent notice of the date, time, and place in advance of the hearing.
- The hearing shall be conducted by any individual that does not have a direct interest in the outcome of the hearing.
- AAI shall give the parent a full and fair opportunity to present relevant evidence. At the parents’ expense and choice, they may be represented by an individual of their choice, including an attorney.
- AAI shall make its decision in writing within a reasonable time following the hearing.
- The decision must be based exclusively on evidence presented at the hearing, and include a summary of the evidence and reasons for the decision.
- If the decision is to expunge the record, AAI will seal it or make it otherwise unavailable to other staff and educators.
Data Breach Response Policy
AAI shall follow industry best practices to protect information and data. In the event of a data breach or inadvertent disclosure of personally identifiable information, AAI staff shall follow industry best practices for responding to the breach.
- The Director will work with the information security officer to designate individuals to be members of the cyber incident response team (CIRT).
- At the beginning of an investigation, the information security officer will begin tracking the incident and log all information and evidence related to the investigation.
- The information security officer will call the CIRT into action once there is reasonable evidence that an incident or breach has occurred.
- The information security officer will coordinate with other IT staff to determine the root cause of the breach and close the breach.
- The CIRT will coordinate with legal counsel to determine if the incident meets the legal definition of a significant breach as defined in R277-487, and determine which entities and individuals need to be notified.
- If law enforcement is notified and begins an investigation, the CIRT will consult with them before notifying parents or the public, so as to not interfere with the law enforcement investigation.
The American Academy of Innovation (AAI) recognizes the importance of transparency and will post this policy on the school website at aaiutah.org.
Administration & Operations
Employee Standards of Conduct
School expects that all employees conduct themselves in a professional and ethical manner. If employees are not sure if an action is ethical or proper, they should discuss the matter openly with their supervisor or school director/principal. An employee should not conduct business that is unethical in any way, nor should an employee influence other employees to act unethically.
Furthermore, an employee should report any dishonest activities or damaging conduct to an appropriate supervisor.
In the event that you become aware of another employee’s behavior or actions, which you believe are inappropriate, illegal, problematic, or in any way inhibit or affect your job performance or the School’s work environment, you should discuss such behavior or actions with the Director/Principal, your supervisor or the Board of Directors. The School will promptly, thoroughly, and confidentially investigate all reasonable concerns, and, where necessary, appropriate corrective action will be taken. You may not discuss such actions or behavior with other School employees except as directed by School. Discussing such matters with other employees may – in and of itself – create an unacceptable work environment for which you will be held responsible and for which you may be disciplined in accordance with School’s disciplinary policy.
Orderly and efficient operation of the School requires that employees maintain proper standards of conduct and observe certain procedures. These guidelines are provided for informational purposes only and are not intended to be all-inclusive. Nothing herein is intended or shall be construed to change or replace, in any manner, the “at-will” employment relationship between the School and the employee.
The School views the following as inappropriate behavior:
- Negligence, carelessness, or inconsiderate treatment of School clients and/ or their matters/ files.
- Theft, misappropriation, or unauthorized possession or use of property, documents, records, or funds belonging to the School, or any client or employee; removal of same from School premises without authorization.
- Divulging confidential information, of any kind, to any unauthorized person(s) or without an official need to know.
- Obtaining unauthorized confidential information pertaining to clients or employees.
- Changing or falsifying client records, School records, personnel or pay records, including timesheets without authorization.
- Willfully or carelessly damaging, defacing, or mishandling property of a client, the School, or other employees.
- Taking or giving bribes of any nature, or anything of value, as an inducement to obtain special treatment, to provide confidential information, or to obtain a position. Acceptance of any gratuities or gifts must be reported to a supervisor or manager.
- Entering School premises without authorization during off-duty hours.
- Willfully or carelessly violating security, safety, or fire prevention equipment or regulations.Unauthorized use of a personal vehicle for School business.
- Rude, discourteous or un-businesslike behavior; creating a disturbance on School premises or creating discord with clients or fellow employees; use of abusive language.
- Insubordination or refusing to follow instructions from a supervisor or manager; refusal or unwillingness to accept a job assignment or to perform job requirements.
- Failure to observe scheduled work hours, failure to contact a supervisor or manager in the event of illness or any absence within thirty (30) minutes of the scheduled start of work; failure to report to work when scheduled; unauthorized or excessive use of sick leave or any other leave of absence.
- Leaving the office during scheduled work hours without permission; unauthorized absence from the assigned work area during regularly scheduled work hours.
- Sleeping or loitering during regular working hours.
- Recording time for another employee or having time recorded to or by another employee.
- Use or possession of intoxicating beverages or illegal use or possession of narcotics, marijuana or drugs (under state, federal or local laws), on School premises during working hours or reporting to work under the influence of intoxicants or drugs so as to interfere with job performance, or having any detectable amounts of drugs in an employee’s system.
- Unauthorized possession of a weapon on School premises.
- Illegal gambling on School premises.
- Soliciting, collecting money, vending, and posting or distributing bills or pamphlets on School property. These activities are closely controlled in order to prevent disruption of School services and to avoid unauthorized implications of School sponsorship or approval. However, this general rule is not intended to hinder or in any way curtail the rights of free speech or free expression of ideas. Therefore, such activity by employees during non-working time, including meal and rest periods, is not restricted so long as such activity does not interfere with the orderly and regular conduct of the School business, is lawful, in good taste, conducted in an orderly manner, and does not create safety hazards or violate general good housekeeping practices. Any person who is not an employee of the School is prohibited from any and all forms of solicitation, collecting money, vending, and posting or distributing bills or pamphlets on School property at all times.
- Falsification of one’s employment application, medical or employment history.
- Illegal or un-businesslike conduct, on or off School premises, which adversely affects the School services, property, reputation or goodwill in the community, or interferes with work.
- American Academy of Innovation (the “School”) adopts this policy to ensure that the School utilizes sound internal controls and properly handles cash received by School personnel. The Director will designate at least two (2) School employees who are authorized to handle cash paid to the School, and only those employees may handle cash for the School. The Director will ensure that all employees who are authorized to handle cash receive appropriate annual training. Receipts must be issued for all cash received by the School. All cash received must be deposited within three (3) days of receipt. Two individuals should prepare each deposit using tamper-resistant deposit bags. The Director may establish additional procedures associated with the handling of cash that is not inconsistent with this policy or applicable laws and regulations. No School employee should handle cash associated with a non-school-sponsored activity in their capacity as a School employee. In the event such an individual does handle such cash, they must make it clear to the organization sponsoring the activity that they are not acting as a School employee.
- It is the policy of the American Academy of Innovation (the “School”) to comply with the gift rules outlined in the FCC’s 6th Report and Order. Specifically, as an E-Rate applicant, the School and its employees and agents will not solicit or accept any gift or other thing of value from a service provider participating in or seeking to participate in the E-Rate program. This policy is applicable at all times and is not in effect or triggered only during the time period when the competitive bidding process is taking place. Notwithstanding the foregoing, this policy is not intended to discourage charitable giving.
- In selecting service providers for all eligible goods and/or services for which Universal Service Fund (“E-Rate”) support will be requested, the American Academy of Innovation (the “School”) shall:
- Make a request for competitive bids for all eligible goods and/or services for which E-Rate support will be requested and comply with all applicable state procurement processes. Wait at least twenty-eight (28) days after the posting date of the FCC Form 470 on the USAC Schools and Libraries website before making commitments with the selected service providers. Consider all bids submitted and select the most cost-effective service offering, with price being the primary factor considered. Maintain control over the competitive bidding process; shall not surrender control of the process to a service provider who is participating in the bidding process, and shall not include service provider contact information on the FCC Forms 470. If a situation is not addressed by this policy, the School will follow 47 C.F.R., section 54.503. It is the policy of the American Academy of Innovation (the “School”) to retain all E-Rate records for a period of five (5) years after the last date of service in accordance with FCC Fifth Report and Order (Para. 47, FCC 04-190, Adopted August 4, 2004).
Religious Freedom Policy
Purpose & Philosophy
American Academy of Innovation (AAI) promotes mutual understanding and respect for the interests and rights of all individuals regarding their beliefs, values, and customs. Specifically, it is the school’s purpose to have a policy that:
- Fosters knowledge and understanding about, and sensitivity toward, religious differences and the role of religion in a diverse, contemporary society;
- Allows student and employee religious expression and freedom of speech within the parameters of existing State and Federal law;
- Supports a climate of academic freedom in which religious ideas and organizations can be discussed in an objective way, for their educational value, with emphasis on the impact of religions on history, literature, art, music, morality, and other key social institutions;
- Requires official neutrality on the part of teachers, administrators, other school employees, and volunteers regarding religious activity when acting in their official capacities;
- Promotes constructive dialogue between schools and community regarding religion; and
- Encourages educators and all members of the school community to engage in persistent efforts to eliminate prejudice, build trust, work toward consensus, and resolve disputes over religious issues in schools promptly, equitably, sensitively, and with civility at the local level.
It is school policy to comply with existing state and federal law regarding religion and religious expression in public schools. Specifically, it is school policy to:
- Allow students and employees to engage in expression of personal religious views or beliefs within the parameters of current law; and,
- Maintain official neutrality regarding sectarian religious issues. The school will neither advance nor inhibit religion.
- It is also school policy to take all reasonable steps to resolve disputes over religious issues in schools promptly, equitably, and with civility.
Student Expression of Personal Religious Beliefs or Views
- Non-discrimination. The American Academy of Innovation (AAI) will not forbid students acting on their own, from expressing their personal religious views or beliefs solely because they are of a religious nature and may not discriminate against private religious expression by students, but will instead give students the same right to engage in religious activity and discussion as they have to engage in other comparable activity.
- Freedom to act. While the freedom to believe is absolute, the freedom to act on a belief is not. In order to claim a violation of the Free Exercise protections of the First Amendment and this policy, a person must show that his or her actions:
- Are motivated by a sincere religious belief, and
- Have been substantially burdened by school officials or the school.
- Least restrictive means. If an individual can show that his or her actions are motivated by a sincere religious belief and have been substantially burdened by school officials or the school, school officials can still regulate the conduct if they have a compelling interest, and pursue such interest in the manner least restrictive of the individual’s religion.
- Student religious expression during discretionary time. Free exercise of religious practices or freedom of speech by students during discretionary time shall not be denied, unless the conduct or speech unreasonably interferes with the ability of school officials to maintain order and discipline, violates school rules, impinges on the rights of others, unreasonably endangers persons or property, creates a coercive atmosphere, or violates concepts of civility or propriety appropriate to the school setting.
- Student conduct or speech of a personal religious nature that may not be prohibited unless it violates the standards above, includes, but is not limited to:
- Reading the Bible or other scriptures;
- Saying grace;
- Praying with friends in cafeterias, hallways, around flagpoles, or at athletic contests and other extracurricular activities;
- Discussing religious views with other students, or
- Attempting to persuade peers about religious topics, as long as the persuasive speech does not constitute harassment
- Organized prayer groups and religious clubs. Students may organize prayer groups, religious clubs, and other gatherings before and after school to the same extent that students are permitted to organize other noncurricular student activity groups and clubs. Such groups and clubs must be given the same access to school facilities for assembling as is given to other noncurricular groups, without discrimination because of the religious content of their expressions.
- Student religious expression during instructional time. Students participating in school sponsored learning activities shall not be prohibited from expressing personal religious beliefs or be penalized for so doing, unless the expression unreasonably interferes with the ability of school officials to maintain order and discipline, violates school rules, impinges on the rights of others, unreasonably endangers persons or property, creates a coercive atmosphere, or violates concepts of civility or propriety appropriate to the school setting.
- Student religious conduct or expression that may not be prohibited in homework, classroom discussions, presentations, assignments, or school sponsored activities, unless it violates the standards above, includes but is not limited to:
- Submitting homework, artwork, or other assignments with religious content;
- Giving class presentations with religious content that are relevant to the curriculum and matter being discussed;
- Making religious remarks or asking questions about religion in the ordinary course of classroom discussion;
- Asking questions of students or AAI employees regarding their religious beliefs or views.
- Teachers and other school officials should evaluate homework and classroom work with religious content consistent with ordinary academic standards of substance and relevance, as well as other legitimate pedagogical concerns.
- When responding to a student’s question about an employee’s personal religious beliefs or views, the employee must maintain official neutrality and be careful not to advocate or encourage acceptance of his or her religious belief or perspective. (See the Response to Questions section of this policy.)
Religious Clothing & Apparel
- Because dress is a form of individual expression, any prohibition or regulation of religious clothing or apparel must be consistent with the school dress and uniform standard (including standards for “free dress days,” done in the least restrictive manner possible to accomplish school objectives of maintaining a safe and orderly school environment.
- School officials should also be sensitive and appropriately accommodate students who request not to wear certain gym clothes that they regard, on religious grounds, as immodest.
Moment of Silence in Classrooms
- In accordance with Utah law, teachers may provide for the observance of a period of silence in the classroom each school day. However, teachers and other school officials must maintain official neutrality by neither encouraging nor discouraging prayer nor other religious exercise during the moment of silence.
- Under school policy, teachers and other school officials may not organize, endorse, or encourage prayer exercises in the classroom. Teachers and other school officials must supervise during this time.
- Moment of silence. Students may elect to hold a moment of silence as part of graduation or other extracurricular ceremonies or activities. A moment of silence may only be initiated and conducted by students, and shall not be used as a forum for vocal prayer or other religious exercise, but rather as an opportunity for those in attendance to participate in a quiet moment according to the dictates of their own conscience. During a moment of silence and all other religious activities associated with graduation, school officials shall maintain official neutrality.
- Prayers by non-students are prohibited at athletic contests and other extracurricular events: Consistent with the general policy on school-sanctioned prayers, it is school policy to prohibit prayers initiated or led by coaches, parents, clergy, or other non-students prior to, during, or after athletic contests and other extra-curricular events. Students may pray together at such events consistent with the guidance outlined in above in this policy. Coaches, administrators, and other school officials may be present during student prayers to supervise, but should in no way participate in or encourage prayer exercises. School officials should take steps to prevent any activity from being coercive or harassing.
Distribution of Religious Materials on School Grounds
- Non-school sponsored organizations and non-students may only distribute literature or other materials in schools or on school grounds in accordance with reasonable time, place, and manner restrictions imposed by the school.
- Students may distribute literature unrelated to school curriculum or activities only at reasonable times, places, and manners designated by the school.
- Religious tracts, books, or literature may not be singled out for special regulation or prohibition based on content, but is subject to reasonable time, place and manner restrictions imposed by the schools on other non-school related literature.
Employee Expression of Personal Religious Beliefs
- Official neutrality. All employees of the American Academy of Innovation (AAI) must maintain strict neutrality when acting in their official capacities. An employee’s rights relating to voluntary religious practices and freedom of speech do not include proselytizing to any student regarding atheistic, agnostic, sectarian, religious, or denominational doctrine while the employee is acting in the employee’s official capacity, nor may an employee attempt to use his or her position to influence a student regarding the student’s religious beliefs or lack thereof.
- Response to questions. If a student asks an employee about that employee’s personal religious beliefs, the employee may choose not to respond out of professional respect for the student’s freedom of conscience or personal beliefs. However, while acting in an official capacity, an employee may respond in an appropriate and restrained manner to a spontaneous question from a student regarding the employee’s personal religious beliefs or perspectives. Because of the special position of trust held by school employees, employees may not advocate or encourage acceptance of specific religious beliefs or perspectives; but may, by exercising due caution, explain or define personal religious beliefs or perspectives.
- Reasonable accommodation. It is school policy to reasonably accommodate an employee’s or prospective employee’s religious dress, observance or practice whenever such accommodation can be made without undue hardship on the conduct of the school’s business.
Volunteers & Religion
- The American Academy of Innovation (AAI) prohibits discrimination based on religion, against any group or individual desiring to volunteer at the school.
- Volunteers must maintain strict neutrality regarding religion while performing volunteer work for the school.
- Volunteers are prohibited from engaging in proselyting activities or recruiting activities of any type on school grounds or in conjunction with any school activity, and must strictly follow the directions given them by school officials.
- Religious apparel is permissible if it is required by a person’s religion, is part of the person’s ordinary work dress, would not be disruptive of the school environment, and does not contain a proselytizing message.
- Volunteers, including those from religious organizations, serving in the schools, and interacting directly with students on a regular basis, shall wear a school-approved volunteer badge.
- School officials are responsible to monitor the behavior and interactions of volunteers while they are serving in school or participating in school activities. Volunteers who fail to comply with the provisions of this policy shall be asked to leave the school or activity. Ultimate responsibility for enforcement of this policy rests with the Director.
Religion in the Curriculum
- Teaching about religion. Religious instruction is the responsibility of parents and religious institutions, but teaching about religion and beliefs of conscience is a legitimate and appropriate part of a complete academic education on the elementary and secondary levels.
- Instructional practices. To ensure that the educational approach to religion is one of academic instruction, not of indoctrination, and that it does not unduly favor religion over non-religion, teachers and school officials shall adhere to the following guidelines:
- Study or presentations about religion or other beliefs of conscience must achieve academic educational objectives, and be presented in a balanced manner within the context of the approved curriculum.
- School’s approach to religion must be academic, not devotional.
- Students may be exposed to all religious views and beliefs of conscience, but they should not be coerced to accept any view or belief.
- The objective study of comparative religions is permissible, but no religious tent, belief, or denomination may be given inappropriate emphasis; the school may educate about all religions, but may not promote or denigrate any religion or belief of conscience.
- Students should be taught to understand a variety of beliefs, and to respect the rights of all people, including the rights of individuals or groups with whom the students may disagree. Teaching about religion and beliefs of conscience should emphasize the role of religion and beliefs of conscience in history and culture, and the importance of religious liberty as a cornerstone of a democratic society.
- Privacy: In accordance with Federal and State Family Educational Rights and Privacy laws, school officials shall not solicit private information or explanations from students about their personal religious affiliations, beliefs, or practices without first obtaining proper parental consent.
- Religious music in schools. Seasonally appropriate and sacred religious music may be performed in schools, if presented in a balanced, prudent, and objective manner.
- Music should be selected based on its musical quality and educational value rather than its religious content.
- Music performances must achieve secular educational objectives and be presented in a balanced manner within the context of the approved curriculum.
- Teachers should use good judgment and be especially sensitive to the feelings of students who might wish not to participate in school programs or activities for religious reasons, and should explore all reasonable alternatives in resolving a student’s objection before offering or granting a waiver of participation.
- Performances at religious services. No school employee or student may be required to attend or participate in any religious service, whether in an individual capacity or as a member of a performing group, regardless of where or when the service is held. No penalty may be assessed for failure to attend or perform in such an activity.
- Students may voluntarily attend and perform during a religious service as individuals or as members of a group, provided all arrangements are made by students or non-school adults.
- Performances in church-owned facilities. Unless granted an appropriate waiver, students who are members of performing groups such as school choirs, may be required to rehearse or otherwise perform in a church-owned or operated facility if the following conditions are met:
- The performance is not part of a religious service;
- The activity of which the performance is a part is neither intended to further a religious objective nor under the direction of a church official; and,
- The activity is open to the general public.
- Visits to church-owned facilities. Unless granted an appropriate waiver, students may be required to visit church-owned facilities when religious services are not being conducted if the visit is intended solely for the purpose of pursuing permissible educational objectives, such as those relating to art, music, architecture or history.
- Celebration. Religious and civic holiday such as Easter, Passover, Rosh Hashanah, Yom Kippur, Thanksgiving, Hanukkah, Christmas, Kwanzaa, and Ramadan offer opportunities to teach about a variety of religious traditions and beliefs of conscience during the school year.
- Other holidays. Activities and discussions related to cultural holidays such as Valentine’s Day, St. Patrick’s Day, and Halloween should be academic in nature. Because these holidays may be viewed by some parents as having religious connotations, requests for excusal in school activities associated with these holidays should be routinely granted.
- Parties. Class parties associated with seasonal holidays are appropriate in so far as they are consistent with the approved curriculum. However, consistent with the school’s goal of maximizing instructional time, such parties must not unduly interfere with regular academic activities.
- Teaching about holidays. The significance of holidays, whether religious or secular, may be explained or discussed in an objective manner as part of regular classroom instruction, or as questions from students arise to promote a better understanding among all students.
- During holidays. The display of religious symbols that are part of religious holidays is permitted as a teaching aid or resource provided such symbols are displayed as an example of the cultural heritage of the holiday, and are temporary in nature. Such holidays include, but are not limited to Christmas, Kwanzaa, Hanukkah, Ramadan, Easter, Passover, Valentine’s Day, St. Patrick’s Day, Thanksgiving, and Halloween.
- Diversity of symbols. If any religious symbol is to be part of a display, the school will allow for other religious, cultural or ethnic symbols.
Waivers of Participation
- Rights of individuals. While the American Academy of Innovation (AAI) acknowledges its obligation to be sensitive and fair toward the personal rights and beliefs of all individuals, merely exposing students to ideas that may offend the religion does not amount to a substantial burden on their religious exercise. Furthermore, it is unconstitutional to allow one person’s or one group’s religion to determine the curriculum for all others. Consequently, it is school policy to accommodate the legitimate objections of individuals by granting waivers of participation when requested, or when no other reasonable alternative is possible.
- A parent or legal guardian of a student may request a waiver of participation in any portion of the curriculum or school activity which the requesting party believes to be an infringement upon a right of conscience or the exercise of religious freedom in any of the following ways:
- It would require participation in a practice that would be offensive to, or substantially burdensome on a religion;
- It would require participation in a practice forbidden by a religious belief or practice, or right of conscience; or
- It would bar participation in a practice required by a religious belief or practice, or right of conscience.
- A claimed infringement must rise to a level of belief that the school requirement violates a superior duty which is more than a personal preference.
- A parent, guardian, or secondary student requesting a waiver of participation may also suggest an alternative to the school requirement or activity that requires reasonably equivalent performance by the student.
- In responding to a request for a waiver, AAI may:
- Waive participation by the student in the objectionable curriculum or activity with no penalty;
- Provide a reasonable alternative as suggested by the parent or secondary student, or other reasonable alternative developed in consultation with the requesting party that will achieve the objectives of the portion of the curriculum or activity for which waiver is sought; or
- Deny the request.
- A request for waiver shall not be denied unless school officials determine that requiring the participation of the student is the least restrictive means necessary to achieve a compelling school interest.
- In responding to a request for waiver, the school shall not require a student to accept a substandard or educationally deficient alternative.
- If any portion of any curriculum or activity is repeatedly alleged to interfere with the rights of conscience or exercise of religious freedom of students, parents or legal guardians, such curriculum or activity shall be evaluated by the school and the curriculum department in order to determine whether the educational objectives could be achieved by less intrusive means.
Released Time for Religious Instruction
- General rule. American Academy of Innovation (AAI) may permit the release of students during school hours for attendance at religious classes taught by religious teachers on private property, but not on public school premises.
- Religious classes shall not be held in school buildings or on school property in any way that permits public money or property to be applied to or that requires public employees to become entangled with any religious worship, exercise, or instruction.
- Students shall attend released-time classes during the school day only upon the written request and permission of the student’s parent or legal guardian.
- Because public schools have a legitimate interest in knowing where their students are during school hours, released-time personnel may transmit regular attendance reports to the public school. However, school personnel may not become entangled with released-time programs by gathering or compiling attendance reports from released-time programs.
- Teachers of released-time classes are not to be considered members of the school faculty or to participate as faculty members in any school function.
- Schedules of classes shall not include released-time classes. At the convenience of the school, registration forms may contain a space indicating “released-time” designation. Scheduling shall be done on forms, and supplies furnished by the religious institution, and by personnel employed or engaged by the institution, and shall occur off school premises.
- Teachers, administrators, or other officials shall not request teachers of released-time classes to exercise functions or assume responsibilities for the public-school program which would result in a commingling of the activities of the two institutions.
- School equipment or personnel shall not be used in any manner to assist in the conduct of released-time classes. No connection of bells, telephones, or other devices shall be made between public school buildings and institutions offering religious instruction, except as a convenience to the public school in the operation of it’s own program. When any connection of devices is permitted, the pro-rata costs shall be borne by the respective institutions.
- Institutions offering religious instruction shall be regarded as private schools separate and apart from the American Academy of Innovation.
Patriotism and Respect for the Flag
The Flag of the United States of America shall be appropriately displayed at all schools in keeping with customary and accepted practices. Students shall show proper respect for their country’s emblem. Instruction should include the frequent repeating of the Pledge of Allegiance by students and teachers. Discourteous treatment of the flag or other national symbols shall be cause for disciplinary action.
Parent Involvement Policy
The American Academy of Innovation (AAI) regards parental involvement vital to the academic success of students. Parents are the initial teachers of their children and serve as partners with the school in helping their children achieve academic success.
- AAI will involve parents in the development of its academic plans.
- The school will invite parents to participate in the development of the school plan for at-risk students. Information, including academic data, state and federal allocations, personnel, and instructional strategies will be given to parent representatives two weeks prior to the meeting for review.
- Parents will review information, attend scheduled meetings and give input into the development of the plan.
- The Board will give final approval of the plan.
- AAI will involve parents in the process of school review and improvement by:
- Sharing overall achievement data with parents.
- Inviting input from parents regarding school academic goals.
- Discussing scientifically based research regarding instructional practices.
- Giving direction in securing research-based curriculum materials that align with goals.
- AAI will provide coordination and technical assistance to promote quality parental involvement activities, such as the following:
- Twice during the year, school leadership will include parental involvement discussions to maximize coordination and effective use of resources.
- AAI will provide annual training to school administrators and teachers on effective parent involvement strategies.
- AAI will Schedule an annual parent involvement seminar to build effective parental involvement strategies.
- AAI will coordinate parental involvement strategies with other programs, by implementing the following:
- Representatives from other programs will be encouraged to co-sponsor the annual parent involvement seminar with Title I.
- Faculty and staff who have responsibility for overseeing parental involvement activities will meet at least twice a year to discuss plans and coordinate efforts.
- AAI will conduct an annual parental involvement evaluation.
- Each year, local school community councils will be asked to provide feedback on the quality of involvement opportunities and input on how the school might improve support for parental involvement.
- Parents will be encouraged to complete a survey that will elicit feedback on current activities, and will request input for future efforts.
- At the beginning of the new school year, AAI will provide a summary of the parental survey that contains it’s plans to address identified needs and recommendations.
- AAI will involve parents in a variety of school activities.
- The director will report annually on parental involvement in at-risk and other programs.
- In the annual training for administrators and teachers, the school will share identified successful parental involvement activities with volunteer committees.
- The Director will annually report to the board how Title I funds were used to support effective parent involvement strategies.
Parent School Involvement Policy
The American Academy of Innovation (AAI) regards parental involvement as vital to the academic success of students. Parents are the initial teachers of their children and serve as the partners with the school in helping their children achieve academic success.
AAI will ensure that information related to school and parent programs, meetings, and other activities are sent to the parents of participating children in a format and, to the extent practicable, in a language the parents can understand. AAI will involve parents in the development of its school plan.
- AAI will invite two parents to participate in the development of the school plan as part of the School Community Council format. Information, including academic data, state and federal days prior to the meeting for review. All meeting dates will be published in the Family Newsletter, which will be delivered via email and posted on the school website calendar of events.
- The parents will review information, attend scheduled meetings and give input into the development of the school plan.
- The Board will give final approval of the school plan. AAI will involve parents in the planning, review, and improvement of the school-parental involvement policy, as well as joint development of Title I Schoolwide Plan.
- The school will share the achievement data from the school with parents through meetings, the school website, and paper copies at two separate parent-teacher nights per year, which are typically held in October and February.
- AAI will invite input from parents regarding the school’s academic goals.
- The parents and administration will discuss scientifically research-based instructional practices and other successful, proven practices from organizations, colleges, universities and K-12 schools implementing Project-based, STEM and Experiential Learning models.
- AAI and parents will give direction in securing research-based curriculum materials that align with school goals and curriculum. AAI will convene an annual meeting to inform parents of participation in Title I and the parents’ right to be involved.
- Meetings shall be held at a convenient time and advertised in the AAI Newsletter.
- Flexible meeting times with parents will be offered, either in the morning or evening. Parents shall be invited and encouraged to attend the meeting. AAI will build the school and parent capacity for strong parental involvement.
- AAI will request parental assistance through sign-up forms for various volunteer or parental involvement opportunities.
- AAI will provide annual training to school administrators and teachers on effective parental involvement strategies.
- School administration will meet at least twice per year to discuss parental involvement plans and coordinate efforts, and report planning efforts to the Board.
- AAI will provide parents with description and explanation of the curriculum in use at the school.
- AAI will provide assistance to parents in understanding such topics as the state’s academic content standards and state and local academic assessments. AAI will coordinate parental involvement strategies with other school and local programs.
- AAI will conduct an annual school improvement survey.
- Annually, parents will be encouraged to complete a parent involvement survey that will elicit feedback of improving the academic quality of the school, and request input for future efforts.
- At the beginning of the school year, the school will provide a summary of the surveys.
- The administration will ensure that the school is involving parents in a variety of school activities.
- The school administration will submit an annual report of successful parental involvement activities.
- The identified successful parental involvement activities will be shared with the Parent Leadership Team (FSO) and the families of students at the school.
Title I is a United States Department of Education (USDOE) program that provides funding for improving academic achievement for economically disadvantaged, low-achieving students. The American Academy of Innovation (AAI) uses these funds to provide additional academic support and enrichment opportunities to students to help them master the academic curriculum and to meet state standards in core academic subjects.
Highly Qualified Teachers and Paraprofessionals. All personnel working in Title I programs must meet the criteria to be considered “highly qualified”. For teachers, this means they must have at least a bachelor’s degree, full state certification, and must have passed a competency test in their areas of instruction. Instructional assistants must have a minimum of two years of college or pass a competency exam in Language Arts and Math.
Parent Involvement. AAI involves the parents of our students to plan enrichment opportunities and interventions that will help students meet improvement goals by providing notification of:
- Teacher and paraprofessional Qualifications
- Non-highly qualified teachers
- School progress (such as SAGE scores)
- Annual school report cards with all subgroup data
- Individual student progress
- Title I plan
- Opportunities for homeless students
- Programs and support available for English Language Learners (ELL)
- Safe and drug-free school issues
- How to resolve concerns
Title I Compact
Parent or legal guardian responsibilities. I want my child to achieve, therefore I will:
- Make certain my child attends school regularly and on time.
- See that my child is well-rested and has breakfast each day.
- Set aside a specific time and place for homework, assisting, as necessary.
- Attend at least two conferences, and communicate regularly with my child’s teacher to ensure his or her academic success.
- Support the school and staff in maintaining proper discipline.
- Encourage positive attitudes toward school.
- Volunteer in my child’s classroom as appropriate.
- Review information and work sent home and respond, as necessary.
Student responsibilities. It is important that I learn, therefore I will:
- Attend school regularly and on time.
- Complete assignments and homework.
- Bring homework and supplies to school each day.
- Work to the best of my ability.
- Work cooperatively with classmates, teachers and staff.
- Respect myself, other people, and the school.
- Follow all school rules.
- Accept responsibility for my own actions.
Teacher responsibilities. It is important that my student achieve, therefore I will:
- Hold expectations high for all students, believing that all students can learn.
- Provide high-quality instruction in a supportive and non-threatening environment.
- Provide meaningful homework.
- Communicate regularly with my students and their families through conferences, notes, phone calls, etc.
- Provide opportunities for parents to assist in the classroom in meaningful ways and to observe classroom activities.
Administration responsibilities. I support this compact, therefore I will:
- Provide an equitable learning environment for all children.
- Encourage the staff to provide parents with information about the total school program.
- Encourage our staff to provide avenues for positive and meaningful parent involvement.
- Schedule annual parent-teacher conferences for parents of children to attend.
- Provide reasonable parent access to staff members.
- Provide a variety of opportunities for parents to volunteer in their child’s classroom.
- If needed and reasonable, provide parents opportunities to observe classroom activities.
Disposal of Textbooks
Prior to the disposal of textbooks, American Academy of Innovation (AAI) shall:
- Notify other Local Education Agencies (LEAs) of available textbooks and timelines for disposal of textbooks.
- Provide procedures for negotiating the exchange of the textbooks.
Firearm Safety in School
Consistent with R277-611, the American Academy of Innovation (AAI) may allow volunteers to instruct students or community members in firearm safety with prior notice to the board, parents and students.
If such instruction is allowed, administration shall implement procedures consistent with R277-611 to ensure that materials and instructors are approved in advance consistent with rule.
Schedule Change Policy
AAI recognizes the crucial role that courses play in student learning, engagement, graduation, and life pursuits. Students are registered for courses every spring by the counseling staff. The registration process helps AAI plan the number of sections we need for courses, availability of resources and staff, and consideration for student distribution. All schedules are reviewed by the counseling office for accuracy and relevancy.
Students: Before Classes Start
In order to change a class before the semester has started students must submit a request to the counseling department. This may be done by speaking to Angela Steuart (School Counselor) or Cecile Robertson (Schedule Coordinator), reaching out to them both through Microsoft Teams, or emailing them at: firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com.
Changes will be made based on availability and in order of requests received.
Students: Once Classes Have Started
In order to change a class after a class has started students must submit a request to the counseling department by filling out a counselor form (these are available at the front desk). The counselor or counseling secretary will call you down in order of requests received to review the request and discuss options.
Changes will be made based on availability, need assessment, and in order of receipt.
Students: One Week After Classes Have Started
No changes will be made to schedules without administrative approval. In order to request a review, students must submit a request to the Counselor by filling out a meeting request or speaking, emailing Angela Steuart directly. A rationale will be requested and investigated on a case-by-case basis. Affected teachers will be consulted during the investigation phase, before any changes are made.
Faculty: Change Notification
Students have one week after classes to request schedule changes. When students switch out of classes, an automated email will be sent to your Infinite Campus.
When students switch out of classes, Infinite Campus does not retain the course information from the class they are exiting. Infinite Campus also pulls them from the class almost immediately.
After classes have been in session one week and the counseling office will delay the student’s exit day from the class by 48 hours. Teachers should document the student’s work and progress to either pass on to the next teacher, transfer to the new section they are in, or provide to the Counseling Dept if needed.
Example Notification Email:
School holidays at the American Academy of Innovation (AAI) include Federal or State holidays, fall, winter or spring breaks, and other days designated as school holidays on the school’s annual calendar. Part-time or hourly employees do not receive compensation on holidays of any kind. Administrative employees may be required to work holidays as determined by their supervisor or the Director and as outlined in their respective Compensation Agreements. Operations, maintenance and custodial employees are required to work most school holidays and break periods.
If the school closes due to severe weather conditions or another reason, employees will not be required to report to work. Full-time, salaried employees will be paid for that day and it will not be counted as a vacation day. Hourly or part-time employees will not be compensated on days when the school is closed due to severe weather or other conditions. Every effort will be made to contact employees in the event of closure due to weather, directly and through local media.
The American Academy of Innovation (AAI) recognizes that volunteers are a vital part of the success of our charter school.
When parents are involved in their children’s education at home, they do better in school. And when parents are involved in school, children go farther in school, and all facets of the schools they attend, are also benefited. (A New Generation of Evidence: The Family Is Critical to Student Achievement)
- Volunteers are welcome and encouraged in all aspects of school operation to ensure that parents and the larger school community are connected to the school, as well as to reduce the cost of labor at AAI.
- Families are encouraged to volunteer during the regular school year. Additionally, AAI has several opportunities to support our programs through direct donations and participation in school activities. Families are encouraged to donate when able.
- Volunteers shall agree to:
- Sign in and out at the front office
- Wear a visitor’s badge during the time they are in the building while volunteering.
- Authorize the school to perform a criminal background check for all volunteers that have significant, unsupervised access to students.
- Adhere to confidentiality requirements.
- School administration shall ensure that these agreements are kept on file for each volunteer and shall ensure that a list of authorized volunteers is always kept at the school. Administration shall ensure that all volunteers who perform work on behalf of the school are properly authorized.
VOLUNTEER SCOPE OF WORK & CONFIDENTIALITY & PROPERTY ACKNOWLEDGEMENT
The American Academy of Innovation (AAI) recognizes that volunteers are a vital part of the success of our charter school. This Scope of Work and Confidentiality Acknowledgement outlines the work expectations and responsibilities for school volunteers, and explains the legal requirement of student confidentiality and the use of school property. Student records, employee records, school proprietary information and work products, as well as certain other information and property, are protected by law and school policy.
The below named “Volunteer” is authorized to perform work on behalf of the AAI, including work with the Parent Organization. That work may include:
- Assisting teachers in classrooms
- Basic filing and routine office work
- Supervision of students at lunch and/or recess
- Assembling and moving equipment, furniture, or supplies
- Assisting at school events
- Contacting school employees, families, and vendors about school events, policies, and other information
- Receiving cash donations or payments for fundraising sale items
- Assisting in the school library under the direction of the library staff
- Marketing activities
- Technology, internet, or network activities
- Data management or access
- Other tasks as requested by teachers or school administration
Background Check Policy
Every non-licensed employee or adult volunteer who will have significant access to students is required to obtain a background check through the Bureau of Criminal Investigation (BCI). Upon approval, non-licensed employees and adult volunteers are granted authorization to work or volunteer at the school.
Background Check Process
To complete a background check, the employee or volunteer must:
- Obtain paperwork from the school’s main office.
- Pay the background check fee to the American Academy of Innovation.
- Visit an authorized live-scan fingerprinting location as directed by the school. Volunteers are responsible to pay for the live scan fingerprints directly to the scan providers.
- Provide a list of references for the school to call upon, in accordance with Utah Code 53G-11-410.
Once all steps have been completed the school director will receive notification from BCI as to whether the background check has been completed and cleared. If cleared, the school will notify the volunteer that he/she may begin volunteering. If not cleared, the school director will meet with the employee or volunteer to determine if the circumstances do not compromise scholar safety and may grant authorization to volunteer.
Employment or volunteering may not be authorized if the background check reveals any arrests or convictions of sex offenses, drug-related offenses, alcohol-related offenses, and/or offenses against the person under Title 76, Chapter 5, Offenses Against the Person.
The school will monitor BCI’s updates. In the event of a change in clearance due to arrests or convictions, the school may immediately suspend authorization for employment or volunteering. Employees and volunteers are responsible for notifying the school of any offenses and arrests that would change their status within 48 hours of the incident.
The school shall ensure that when making final and administrative determinations and actions following any necessary investigations into BCI reporting, all matters will be handled confidentially. Only the school Director, the Academic Director, and the Operations Manager (Human Resources) will have access to the BCI reporting site and information shared therein. The school director will only discuss BCI findings with the individuals involved only as necessary to protect the safety of our students, the school, and its personnel.
K-12 Title IX Training
Download the K-12 Title IX Training.
Teacher Student Success Act
Download the Teacher Student Success Act.
Employee Social Networking
Employee Social Networking Policies
In general, the American Academy of Innovation (AAI) respects an employee’s decision to use social networking, including but not limited to Facebook, Linked-In, Myspace, Twitter, Web-based email accounts such as Gmail, Hotmail and Yahoo! and the like, on personal time. Personal use of social media should be reserved for break times and meal periods.
- Participating in social media provides public access by all members of the school family, including co-workers, school administration, staff, and families within the school community. Moreover, by utilizing social media via the school’s electronic assets of technology, computers or internet access, employees are providing the school with access to their social media and therefore agree that an employee’s actions to access social media from the school’s electronic assets of technology, computers or internet access constitutes the employee’s understanding that the employee has no expectation in privacy in the social media and consents that the school may access the employee’s social media at the school’s discretion, and that the school may review materials that be present on the social media, including passwords, text messages, tweets, email communications, and other documents and pictures that are sent to employees or reviewed by employees on the social media.
- Employees must exercise care to ensure that they are not viewed as representatives of the school and that they do not imply that they are speaking on behalf of the school. To the extent employees are posting comments to social media outside the scope of their employment responsibilities, including an on-line forum such as a blog, employees may not include any client or school trade secret or confidential information, and may not make any statements that would give the impression that the views they have expressed are the opinions of the school.
- Employees should refrain from posting derogatory information about AAI or the school community on any such sites and proceed with any grievances or complaints through the regular channels.
- AAI recognizes that participation in some forums or social networks might be important to the performance of an employee’s job. For instance, an employee might find a helpful idea for academic lessons by consulting members of a news group devoted to education.
- Employees may not post to any on-line forums using any official school email address, or providing any school telephone number or extension.
- Employees may not utilize any of the school’s logos, drawings, trademarks, copyrights or other images or photographs of the school, or those that are typically associated with the school, in conjunction with such activities.
- Employee participation in such forums is a personal choice of the individual and all commentaries are authored by the individual and are not official statements of the school. Commentary made by employees on such forums must always reflect positively on the school.
- Employees who maintain a presence on social media sites or services can be disciplined by the school, up to and including termination of employment, if their social networking activities interfere with their ability to fulfill their role as an educator having care or custody over children, including being a role model to youth. While the school does not seek to prohibit an individual from expressing their beliefs or opinions, or to interfere with an employee’s personal life, a career choice as a role model with care or custody over children warrants a level of personal propriety and decency that if compromised publicly, may result in disciplinary action up to and including termination of employment with the school.
- Employees of the school who participate in social networking personally may not friend, or friend equivalent, students or former students who are minors. Employees, including teachers may not allow students to access their personal social network or social media profile, information or site.
- With the express written permission by the Director, purposeful, professional, exclusively educational, Educational Social Networking (ESN), sites or profiles may be established by teachers for the use of students and school administrators. Other school employees are not authorized to create ESN social media sites or profiles. Teachers shall only allow students to access ESN sites if the site is completely professional, and only contains appropriate information for instructional purposes.
- Teachers shall friend, or friend equivalent, the Director and/or Board members (Administration) and any other person in the school community desiring access, and may not unfriend, or unfriend equivalent, administration while they are employed at the school and the ESN site remains active.
- Teachers shall not disclose anyone’s personal information, discuss or post photos of students, colleagues, administration or the Board on social networking sites, without the direct written permission of parents or legal guardians and the Director.
Standardized Test Administration Policy
- Purpose & Philosophy. To ensure that student progress is accurately measured through standardized achievement tests, the Board recognizes the school’s responsibility to implement standardized testing procedures in accordance with State and Federal laws. Information from such student standardized testing may be used by the school and teachers as an additional tool to plan, measure, and evaluate the effectiveness of the educational program.
- Guidelines & Procedures. It shall be the responsibility of the Director to establish specific guidelines and procedures which personnel shall follow when administering standardized student tests, in accordance with State and Federal laws.
- It is the responsibility of all educators to take all reasonable steps to ensure that standardized tests reflect the ability, knowledge, aptitude, or basic skills of each individual student taking standardized tests.
- All teachers and administrators shall be provided in-service training concerning these guidelines and procedures including teacher responsibility for test security and proper professional practices each school year.
- The school shall administer mandated tests in compliance with established school and Utah State Office of Education (USOE) calendars.
- Security. It shall be the responsibility of the Director to oversee the security of all testing materials while at the school.
- All test booklets, administration manuals, and answer sheets shall be secured before and after the test administration.
- No copies of test booklets or answer sheets shall be made.
- All test materials shall be secure in a central location before and after the testing window. Access to the secured materials shall be restricted to authorized personnel.
- The confidentially of tests, testing materials, and answer sheets shall be maintained by all school personnel.
- Standardized Testing Protocol. School personnel shall conduct test preparation, test administration, and the return of all secure test materials in strict accordance with this policy, administrative procedure, Utah State Board of Education (USBE) rules, and state application of federal requirements for funding.
- All standardized tests shall be conducted without any reference materials being made available to students unless the publisher of the test specifies otherwise.
- AAI personnel shall not:
- Provide students directly or indirectly with specific questions, answers, or the subject matter of any specific item in any standardized test prior to administration;
- Copy, print, or make any facsimile of testing material prior to test administration without express permission of the specific test publisher, including the USOE;
- Alter, change or amend any student answer sheet or other standardized test materials at any time in such a way as to alter the student’s intended response;
- Use any prior form of any standardized test in test preparation without express permission of the test publisher, including the USOE;
- Violate any specific test administration procedure or guidelines specified in the test administration manual;
- Knowingly and intentionally do anything that would inappropriately affect the security, validity, or reliability of standardized test scores of any individual student, class, or school.
- Assessment Results. Results of an individual student’s standardized tests shall be shared with the student and parent or legal guardian. Results of an individual student’s standardized tests shall not be considered in determining a student’s academic grade for the appropriate course or grade.
- Students with Disabilities. All students with disabilities shall participate in standardized testing as outlined in the USOE testing policy, Requirement for Participation of Utah Student with Special Needs in the Utah Performance Assessment System for Students (U-PASS).
Health & Human Sexuality Education
The American Academy of Innovation (AAI) shall require all newly hired or newly assigned educators that are responsible for any aspect of human sexuality instruction to attend State-sponsored professional development outlining the human sexuality curriculum and the criteria for human sexuality instruction in any courses offered at the school.
- The school shall provide training consistent with R277-474-5A at least once during every three years of employment for Utah educators.
- The Administration shall convene a Curriculum Materials Review Committee (Committee) as follows:
- The Committee shall be organized consistent with R277-4741B.
- The Committee shall review and approve all guest speakers or guest presenters and their respective materials relating to human sexuality instruction in any course and maturation education prior to their presentations.
- The Committee shall not authorize the use of any human sexuality instructional program or maturation education program not previously approved by the Board, approved consistent with R277-474-6, or approved under Section 53A13-101(1)(c)(ii).
- Administration shall report educators who willfully violate the provisions of this rule to the Instructional Materials Commission (Commission) for investigation and possible discipline.
- The school shall use the common parental notification form, or a form that satisfies all criteria of the law and Board rules and complies with timelines approved by the Board.
- Administration shall develop a logging and tracking system of parental and community complaints and comments resulting from student participation in human sexuality instruction to include the disposition of the complaints and provide that information to the Utah State Office of Education (USOE) upon request. If a student is exempted from course material required by the Board-approved core curriculum, the parent shall take responsibility, in cooperation with the teacher and the school, for the student learning the required course material consistent with Sections 53A-13101.2(1), (2) and (3).
- Any materials that are used in Human Sexuality instruction shall comply with the criteria of Section 53A-13-101(1)(c)(iii) and:
- Shall be medically accurate as defined in R277-474-1G.
- Shall be available for reasonable review opportunities to parents or legal guardians of students prior to consideration for adoption.
- Shall be approved by the Board.
- AAI shall comply with the reporting requirement of Section 53A- 13101(1)(c)(iii)(D). The report shall include:
- A copy of the human sexuality instructional materials and maturation education;
- Materials or program not approved by the Commission that the Board seeks to adopt;
- Documentation of Board approval in a public meeting adopting the materials or program;
- Documentation that the materials or program meets the medically accurate criteria of R277-474-1G;
- Documentation of the recommendation of the materials by the committee; and
- The Board’s adoption process for human sexuality instructional materials and maturation education materials, shall be available for review annually.
Comprehensive Counseling Policy
The American Academy of Innovation (AAI) shall comply with provisions of R277-462. Administration shall develop procedures to ensure that the school offers a Comprehensive Counseling and Guidance Program that:
- Meets the criteria for comprehensive counseling in R277-462(3)
- Meets the criteria for College and Career Readiness in R277-462(4)
- Meets student to counselor ratios in R277-462(5)
- Appropriately uses funds consistent with R277-462(6)
- Makes all reports necessary and required under R277-462(7)
Acceleration & Retention
Early Graduation. Students and parents considering early graduation must first meet with a school counselor at the beginning of their graduating year to discuss a plan for early graduation, and outline the student’s educational plan.
Retained Seniors. A student requesting to remain enrolled at the American Academy of Innovation (AAI) beyond four years must receive authorization from school administration, and meet criteria found in Utah Code R277-419-1. A retained senior is a student beyond the general compulsory education age who is authorized, at the discretion of the Learning Education Agency (LEA), to remain in enrollment as a high school senior in the year(s) after the cohort has graduated due to:
- Pending court investigation or action or both; or
- Other extenuating circumstances beyond the control of the student.
Media Use in Classrooms
The American Academy of Innovation (AAI) recognizes that videos and multimedia presentations can be an important part of classroom instruction, adding variety and helping students see ideas and concepts in several ways. AAI also recognizes that the best way for students to learn is to have information presented in several ways, guided by excellent teachers, and supplemented with student-completed exercises that apply concepts taught.
The Board therefore adopts the following policy relating to the use of videos in class.
- Videos and other multimedia should be used sparingly and must be approved by administration prior to being shown to students.
- Administration will ensure that videos are appropriate for the age of the audience, short, relevant to the subject and specific lesson taught, and connected to a student-completed exercise.
- Permission slips must be signed by parents for any video that is not intended as exclusively educational.
AAI recognizes that grades can wield enormous power over students. Course grades can influence students’ self-esteem and self-worth and impact how they understand their own identity. Grades can also be influential in admissions processes that have a long-term impact on a student’s trajectory. Grades communicate something meaningful and important about a student and that student’s abilities. Grades provide meaningful measures of subject mastery, growth, or another teacher-identified metric. According to psychometrics, the science of measuring mental capacities, validity is one of the most critical aspects of measurement. Validity, as it applies to course grades, requires students, parents, teachers, and institutions to ask if grades mean what we think and say they mean. Thus, the purpose of articulating a grade policy is to delineate the validity of AAI course grades.
Course Grading: The American Academy of Innovation utilizes the following individual letter and numeric grading system for term and semester grades. Grade point averages are computed on the following scale with points computed for each course attempted:
90–100% A | 4 points 4.0
80–89% B | 3 points 3.0
70 – 79% C | 2 points 2.0
60 – 69% D | 1 point 1.0
Students must demonstrate proficiency on at least 80% of the assigned/taught standards during the specified grading period to qualify for alpha-numeric course grades and course credit for the designated term. Course grades are simply the average of all the assessed standards in a given grading period. Students may be awarded additional credit/grades based on performance and pacing. Failure to demonstrate proficiency on 80% of the assigned/taught standards will result in an Incomplete grade for the grading period.
The following symbols may also appear on the student’s transcript. These grades do not bear grade points and are not used in computing the grade point average (GPA):
INC = Incomplete, did not demonstrate proficiency on 80% of assigned/taught standards
P = Pass, credit awarded
F = No Pass, no credit
W = Withdrawn
NG = No Grade, marker used to withhold alpha-numeric grades until Emotional Quotient Standards are addressed
- AAI will update transcripts to reflect the highest earned grade for the designated course/grading period and will use the highest course grade in the calculation of the cumulative GPA.
- Each student and parent/guardian have secured access to a Student Information System account where they can access grades within one week of the course end date.
Capstone Completion: Students must fulfill all requirements of the Capstone course in order to graduate from AAI. Students who do not complete all the requirements of the Capstone course are not eligible for AAI graduation.
Incomplete Grades: Being a Competency-Based school, AAI recognizes the need for varied pacing, additional supports, and flexible timelines regarding student work. Therefore, incomplete grades are viewed as placeholders for students who require some reasonable intervention to assist with competency on course standards. Students who receive an “I” must complete and submit the Incomplete Grade Contract detailing the interventions, supports, and commitments from the student and teachers for earning course grades.
Incomplete grades are not available in the following courses: Capstone courses, Work Study, Internships, and Immersions.
Grade Record Change: A faculty member, department team lead, or group of administrators may initiate an official grade change after official grades are posted to the transcript. Grades may also be changed from an “I”, “NG”, “F” to an earned grade.
Grade Appeal: Students and parents have the right to appeal a final course grade they allege to be the result of arbitrary or capricious grading. “Arbitrary and capricious grading” is defined in the following manner:
- A grade assigned on some basis other than competency on course standards or performance in the course.
- A grade assigned through significant deviation from criteria stated in the course syllabus, assessment rubrics, or articulated by the faculty member.
- A grade assigned by resorting to standards significantly different from those applied to other students in the course.
- A grade assigned as a result of vindictiveness or discrimination.
To appeal a final course grade, the student or parent must:
- Outline the claim of arbitrary and capricious grading in an email to the principal, counselor, and faculty member who awarded the grade.
- Attend the scheduled appeal meeting.
- Present and provide a written rationale and documentation for the grade dispute.
- Provide statements regarding the arbitrary and capricious grading, and detail desired outcomes.
The grade appeal team will deliberate, discuss the implications of the claim, seek additional evidence, ask clarifying questions and determine the next course of action. The deadline for appealing grades in this manner is week 2 of the term immediately following the term of the final course grade being appealed.
AAI values the use of purposeful homework because of the shown correlation between rigorous homework, emotional intelligence, performance, and grit. Learning is an ongoing process. Homework, if planned and executed correctly, provides continuity of learning, access to authentic learning, invokes curiosity, and shifts the burden of ownership. These four values echo the values expressed in AAI’s vision and mission.
The American Academy of Innovation encourages teachers and students to engage in homework practices by adhering to the following guidelines:
- Homework may be used in all grades to augment the learning experiences initiated at school. Assignments of homework shall be made judiciously at the discretion of the teacher after taking into consideration the individual needs of the pupil and the collective needs of the class.
- The frequency, amount, and quality of homework may vary according to the nature of the subject, the teacher’s plan of instruction, and the amount of study time allowed at school. These will be weighed against the student’s age and his/her ability to respond and benefit from homework.
- Generally, students should plan on about 5 minutes times their current grade level as an appropriate expectation for homework each full academic day.
- The assigned homework should:
- Encourage students to do independent study, independent work, and purposeful research.
- Provide opportunity for continuous learning that moves beyond what is being learned in the classroom.
- Invite students to study subject matter in depth.
- Prepare students for career and college readiness.
- Focus on the upper tiers of Bloom’s Taxonomy: analyzing, evaluating, creating.
- To unify AAI’s approach to homework, the following guidelines shall be utilized uniformly by all AAI educators:
- Homework should be application, analysis, evaluation, or creation of previously introduced concepts, skills, and knowledge.
- Homework should develop skills, creative abilities, critical thinking, problem-solving techniques, discovery, and individual initiative.
- Homework should account for individual differences among students.
- Classroom assignments should be completed within the classroom; however, if the work is not completed at school, it should be completed at home and will become homework.
- A logical relationship should exist between the homework and the reason for which it is given. Homework should never be assigned as punishment.
- It is the responsibility of the principal to discuss reasonable homework assignments with all teachers.
- If a parent/guardian has a concern regarding homework that is assigned, the following procedure should be followed:
- Contact the teacher who assigned the homework and discuss the concern.
- If a satisfactory solution is not reached between the parent/guardian and the teacher, the parent/guardian should contact the principal.
- If a satisfactory solution is not reached between the parent/guardian and the school principal, the parent/guardian should contact the Director who has supervisory responsibilities of the school.
- Homework assignments which place an inordinate burden upon parents shall not be made.
Student Education Plans
Administration shall develop, in consultation with school personnel, parents, and the school community, procedures to ensure effective implementation of Student Education Plans (SEPs), and Student Education Occupation Plans (SEOPs) consistent with Section 53A-1a106(2)(b).
Classroom Supplies Appropriation
American Academy of Innovation shall comply with R277-459 regarding the use and distribution of legislative appropriations for the purchase of classroom supplies, and shall develop procedures consistent with law and rule.