Highline Public Schools
15675 Ambaum Blvd. SW Burien,WA 98166

Office Hours:

Monday-Friday: 7:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.

Glossary of Inappropriate Conduct


*See Drugs, Alcohol, Illegal Substance, Paraphernalia


Highline Public Schools and school staff believe that learning best occurs in a positive atmosphere. To that end, we expect all of our students to help create a positive environment. Appearance expectations will be enforced throughout each campus. Appearance that causes disruption of the educational process or presents health or safety issues will not be allowed. The following appearance expectations are for all Highline schools and activities:

  • Shoes are to be worn at all times.
  • Clothing or tattooing with inappropriate language or any reference to tobacco, drugs, alcohol, or gang affiliation (including bandanas) is not allowed.
  • Shorts, skirts, and dresses are to be long enough to maintain modesty while standing or sitting. These items should reach mid-thigh.
  • Shirts should meet the waistband of skirts or pants, even when students move or bend. Undergarments are to be covered at all times.
  • Pants should not have to be held up with a hand when walking. The waistband of the pants must be worn at the waist.
  • Bandanas are not to be worn at school.
  • Piercings must not present health or safety issues to the individual or other students.

Arson or Reckless Burning

Intentionally or recklessly setting fire to a building or property.

Assault or Threat of

The use of excessive physical force or threatening the use of physical force against another person, including use of a weapon or other instrument for the purpose of inflicting injury.


Failing to comply with building and/or district guidelines setting forth class and school attendance. See building policies for interpretations.

Bomb Threat

Threats to bomb or damage any public school building facility or property.


*See Harassment, Intimidation or Bullying

Defacing, Misuse or Destruction of Property

Defined legally as malicious mischief; intentional damage to school district property or to property of others, including, but not limited to, school district employees, visitors or students.

Defiance/Failure to Cooperate

Refusal to comply with basic instructions of school district personnel.

Disruptive Behavior

Conduct that materially and substantially interferes with the educational process.

Drugs, Alcohol, Illegal Substance and Paraphernalia

  • Sale or Distribution - Sale and/or distribution or possession with intent to sell/distribute illegal chemical substances, including alcoholic beverages, drug paraphernalia, medications/stimulants/depressants, or mood-altering compounds. Students may be required to have a drug/alcohol assessment and follow treatment recommendations.
  • Use or Possession – Students may not be under the influence of or possess drugs, alcohol, other illegal substances, or paraphernalia on school property, on school transportation, or on school trips. Students may be required to have a drug/alcohol assessment and follow treatment recommendations.

Electronic Cigarette, Personal Vaporizer

Students are not permitted to use or possess electronic cigarettes or personal vaporizers on school property, on school transportation or on school trips.


Possession or use of explosive substances that could cause injury or damage are prohibited on school property unless written authorization from the district is received in advance and the explosive is part of an instructional lesson.


The wrongful taking of a person’s money or property with his/her consent but by the use of threat or violence.

False Alarm

Setting off an alarm with a reckless or willful disregard to the fact that the alarm is not necessary.

Falsification/Forgery of Documents/Cheating

The forging of parental or guardian signatures on any letter to the school or on any school document. (When informed by the home, the school will accept the signature of an 18-year-old student to certify his own document.)


Intentionally causing or attempting to cause physical injury in such a way as could reasonably cause physical injury to another person. Includes failure to disperse, and failure to report a fight of which the student has become aware.

Gang-Related Behavior

It is the policy of Highline Public Schools that students who participate in gang-related behavior or activities will be subject to intervention and may be reported to the appropriate law enforcement authorities. The type of dress, apparel, activities, acts, behavior, or manner of grooming displayed, reflected, or participated in by students shall not:

  • Lead school officials to reasonably believe that such behavior, apparel, activities, acts, or other attributes are gang related and would disrupt or interfere with the school environment or activity and/or educational objectives;
  • Present a physical safety hazard to self, students, and/or employees;
  • Create an atmosphere in which a student, staff member, or other person’s well-being is hindered by undue pressure, behavior, intimidation, overt gesture, or threat of violence; or
  • Imply gang membership or affiliation by written communication, tattoos, drawing, painting design/emblem upon any school or personal property or one’s person.

Harassment, Intimidation or Bullying

Highline Public Schools is committed to a safe and civil educational environment for all students, employees, volunteers, and patrons, free from harassment, intimidation, or bullying. “Harassment, intimidation, or bullying” means any intentionally written message or image - including those that are electronically transmitted - verbal, or physical act, including, but not limited to, one shown to be motivated by race, color, religion, ancestry, national origin, gender, sexual orientation including gender expression or identity, mental or physical disability, or other distinguishing characteristics, when an act:

  • Physically harms a student or damages the student’s property; or
  • Has the effect of substantially interfering with a student’s education; or
  • Is so severe, persistent, or pervasive that it creates an intimidating or threatening educational or working environment; or
  • Has the effect of substantially disrupting the orderly operation of the school.
  • More information on harassment, intimidation or bullying can be found online at LINK

Inappropriate Displays of Affection

Acts or expressions that are objectionable to staff and/ or students.

Intentional Misuse of School Equipment/Supplies/ Facilities

Deliberate abuse and/or misuse of school equipment, supplies, or facilities, including failure to follow safety rules established for laboratory instructional areas.

Interference with School Authorities

Interfering with school personnel by force or violence, or threat of force or violence.

Internet Access Abuse/Unauthorized Use of Technology/Electronic Devices

This constitutes any action taken in violation of the district’s Acceptable Use Policy or any other district policy prohibiting harassing, intimidating, or bullying behaviors, including, but not limited to,:

  • Using technology such as computers, cellular phones, handheld devices, smartphones, etc. owned by the district or used on the district’s grounds, or at a district-sponsored event to harass, bully, or intimidate any student, staff member, or district volunteer.
  • Intentionally accessing and/or downloading vulgar or obscene materials.
  • Communicating downloaded vulgar or obscene materials to others.
  • Tampering with electronic hardware, data files, or software or unauthorized access to, or use of, such technology.

Lewd Behavior/Sexual Misconduct

Indecent liberties or obscene acts or expressions of or involving sex, including rape. This may also include the possession or display of sexual or obscene images while on school grounds.

Negligent/Reckless Driving

Driving in an unsafe manner on or adjacent to school grounds.

Obscene or Disruptive Material or Gestures/Profane Language

Publishing or distributing on school grounds libelous, profane, obscene, or disruptive materials.

Protective Spray Devices

Under RCW 9.91.160, students age 14 years and older may legally possess personal protective spray devices (such as Mace and pepper spray) if that student has parent permission. Schools may not prohibit the possession of personal protection spray devices, if the student is at least 14 years of age with parent permission, or any person age 18 or older.  Parents/guardians who want their child to carry such a device must provide the school with a letter stating the student’s name, the type of device to be carried, the expiration date, if any, and the reason the child should carry the device.  This letter must be provided to the school each year, and will be kept in the student’s file.  A notation will also be added to the student’s profile in illuminate.  While carrying a protective device is permitted under these circumstances, use of the device may result in discipline, depending on the situation.

Racial or Religious Harassment/Discrimination

Harassment, discrimination, disturbing, tormenting, or pestering an individual(s) on the basis of race or religion by words, in writing, by gestures, or actions.

Refusal to Identify Self

All students must, upon request, identify themselves to proper school authorities in the building, on school grounds, or at school-sponsored events.


Incidents where the student’s presence poses an immediate and continuing danger to other students or school personnel, or poses an immediate and continuing threat of substantial disruption of the class, subject, activity, or educational process of the student’s school.

Sexual Harassment

Sexual harassment does not refer to casual conversations or compliments of a socially accepted nature. It refers to behavior that is unwelcome, offensive, interfering with effectiveness, or creating uneasiness in the educational and work environment. For the purpose of this definition, sexual harassment may include conduct or communication that involves students to adult, student to student, male to female, female to male, male to male, and female to female. Sexual harassment consists of unwelcome and/or inappropriate sexual advances; and/or requests for sexual favors; and/or sexually motivated physical contact; and/or verbal or physical conduct or communication of a sexual nature if:

  • Submission to such conduct or communication is made a term or condition, either explicitly or implicitly, of obtaining an education; and/or
  • Submission to or rejection of such conduct or communication by an individual is used as a factor in decisions affecting that individual’s education; and/or
  • Such conduct or communication has the purpose or effect of unreasonably interfering with an individual’s educational or work performance or creating an intimidating, hostile, or offensive educational or work environment.

Such conduct, whether committed in the educational environment or district workplace by students, is specifically prohibited. This may include, but is not limited to:

  • Making sexually suggestive remarks, gestures, jokes, or teasing;
  • Disparaging remarks about one’s gender or sexually demeaning terms for females and males;
  • Hazing, pranks, or other intimidating behavior toward others because of gender; deliberate and/or unwelcome touching such as impeding or blocking movement, cornering, pinching, pulling on clothing, kissing, or fondling;
  • Displaying or distributing printed, pictorial, derogatory, and/or offensive sexual materials such as posters, cards, pictures, cartoons, graffiti, drawings, or clothing;
  • Using the media for unwanted communications such as letters, phone calls, email, fax, or other technology;
  • Spreading rumors about a person’s private sex life;
  • Unwanted communications about personal sexual experiences; or
  • Requests for sexual favors in exchange for rewards such as grades, promotion, money, and/or personal gain.

For complaint process, disciplinary actions, false accusations, remedies, non-retaliation, dissemination, interpretation, and internal review, please refer to Policy 5262.

Theft/Possession of Stolen Property

To take or possess the property of another without permission.

Tobacco Products

A student shall not carry or smoke any kind of pipe, cigar, cigarette, or any other smoking equipment or material, nor shall students be in possession of or use, chew or snuff tobacco products at school or school-sponsored events/activities, or while a passenger in district vehicles, or on school property.


Being present in an unauthorized place on or adjacent to school grounds and/or refusing to leave when directed to do so.

Unauthorized Gatherings

The assembly or meeting of students and/or non-students on or adjacent to school property without permission of school authorities.


The Board of Directors of Highline Public Schools No. 401 declares its intent not to tolerate possession of dangerous weapons by students on school district property or at school district-sponsored events. Student possession of a dangerous weapon on school district property or at school district-sponsored events creates a danger to students and staff and is disruptive to the operation of schools.

  1. Any elementary or secondary school student who is determined to have carried a firearm onto, or to have possessed a firearm on, public elementary or secondary school premises, public school-provided transportation, or areas of facilities while being used exclusively by public schools, shall be expelled from school for not less than one year The superintendent of the school district may modify the expulsion of a student on a case-by-case basis. (RCW 28A.600.420)
  2. Students who possess a dangerous weapon or who carry, exhibit, display, or draw any dangerous weapon, look-alike weapon, any toy that looks like a weapon, or any other weapon apparently capable of producing bodily harm in a manner, which, under the circumstances, manifests an intent to intimidate another or warrants alarm for the safety of others shall be subject to discipline up to and including expulsion.
  3. Possession includes, but is not limited to, having dangerous weapons on school district property or at a school district-sponsored event located:
    • In a space assigned to a student such as a locker or desk; or
    • On the student’s person or property (on the student’s body, in his/her clothing, backpack, or automobile); or
    • Under the student’s control or accessible or available, such as hidden by the student.
  4. A dangerous weapon includes, but is not limited to:
    • A firearm; or
    • A slung shot, sand club, dirk, chains, or metal knuckles; or
    • Any knife or cutting or stabbing instrument that is carried, exhibited, displayed, or drawn in a manner and at a time and place that either manifests an intent to intimidate another or warrants alarm for the safety of other persons; or
    • Any device commonly known as “nu-chu-ka sticks” consisting of two or more lengths of wood, metal, plastic, or similar substance connected with wire, rope, or other means; or
    • Any device, commonly known as “throwing stars,” which are multi-pointed, metal objects designed to embed upon impact; or
      Explosives of any type; or
    • Anything used as a weapon.