Another name for due process is fairness of procedure. A basic ingredient to due process of law is that one who is not satisfied with a decision may appeal it to a higher authority.
Students must have proper notice of the infraction, an opportunity to be heard, and the hearing must be conducted fairly. Students shall be informed of school rules that have been violated, either orally or in writing, by a school official. They shall be given the right to present evidence or witnesses concerning the charges.
Basic ingredients or steps to be followed in guaranteeing due process:
have PROPER NOTICE of the charge or complaint being made against them;
have the OPPORTUNITY TO KNOW the specific charges or complaints;
be given a FAIR AND IMPARTIAL HEARING and have the opportunity to present evidence and/or witnesses on their own behalf at the time of the hearing;
have had prior OPPORTUNITY TO KNOW that their actions were in violation of established rules and regulations;
be advised that they have the RIGHT TO APPEAL to the next higher authority if not satisfied with the action or decision rendered at their hearing.
If you are uncomfortable reporting this fact to adult personnel at your school, contact someone on the following list.
Guidance Services, 273-7346;
School Social Work Services, 273-7090;
Psychological Services, 273-7095;
Area Superintendent for your school. The phone number is available at your school;
Chief of Schools, Administration, 272-4000.
School Level Grievance
A grievance is another name for a complaint. A student grievance exists when a student/parent believes that he/she has been treated unfairly or has not been afforded due process. Students wishing to register a school-level grievance must do so within 60 calendar days from the time that they became aware of the alleged infraction.
Resolving a School Level Grievance:
A. The student may ask the teacher or person(s) who allegedly treated you unfairly to schedule a conference for the purpose of discussing your complaint.
B. If the complaint is not resolved, the student may arrange to talk with the department head, a guidance counselor, a student intervention specialist, or some other person who may be able to assist.
C. If the above conferences have not resolved the complaint, the student may talk with a school administrator such as an assistant principal for student affairs, an assistant principal II, or the principal.
D. If necessary, the student can contact the area superintendent responsible for the oversight of the school and request that the area superintendent look into the complaint.
E. Students should involve their parents or guardians in resolving school level grievance.
F. Most student grievances can be resolved at the school level through informal conferences with teachers or other school personnel.
G. If efforts to resolve the grievance, with school administrators and the area superintendent fail, the student, upon filing a Level I Formal Grievance with the principal, shall be given a written explanation by the principal either accepting or rejecting the student’s position, and detailing the reason(s) for this decision.
H. A student wishing to appeal the principal’s Level I written decision must file a Level II grievance with the Office of Employee Relations, 2920 N. 40th Street, Tampa, Florida 33605, no later than 10 school days from the date of said decision. Forms for filing grievances are available in the principal’s office and shall be provided upon request.
I. The Office of Employee Relations will have 15 school or work days after receipt of the grievance in which to prepare the case and to schedule and hold a hearing before the Superintendent. The review board shall be composed of persons appointed by the Superintendent. The person filing the grievance may bring witnesses to the hearing.
Procedure for Parent Input
To give parents the opportunity to provide input into employee performance assessment, we encourage parent participation in Hillsborough County Public Schools. Parent Input Forms are available in each school’s main office. On completion, the employee has the right to review and rebut.