Disciplinary Responses

Students should note that violations of major school rules typically result in suspension as a part of the disciplinary response. Most responses will include restorative practices–a plan designed to restore the student’s place in the Deerfield community; these practices are determined by the members of the DC, on a case-by-case basis.

The manner in which students comport themselves–the accountability and honesty they show during the investigation and disciplinary process–will be weighed in determining the appropriate disciplinary response. 

Dean’s Letter of Reprimand

With or without the recommendation of the Disciplinary Committee, a dean may issue a Letter of Reprimand in response to a student’s minor mistake or misbehavior. A copy is placed in the student’s file. A similar subsequent violation would likely result in a hearing of the Disciplinary Committee and an elevated disciplinary response.

Disciplinary Warning

At the recommendation of the Disciplinary Committee, or at the discretion of a dean, a student may be placed on Disciplinary Warning for a violation of a major rule with significant mitigating circumstances or for a series of lesser infractions. A repeated violation of the same or related rules would likely result in dismissal from the Academy.

Disciplinary Probation

At the recommendation of the Disciplinary Committee, a student may be placed on Disciplinary Probation for the violation of a major rule of any kind or for an accumulation of minor infractions. Students on probation must meet with a probation counselor, who will help them learn from their mistakes and develop the skills necessary to prevent recurrence. Through their behavior while on probation, students must demonstrate that they have met the Academy’s expectations for citizenship. Violation of a major school rule during probation would likely result in dismissal from the Academy.

Enrollment Review

(Formerly Head of School’s Warning Status)

During Student Review, faculty may name students for Enrollment Review consideration. With the recommendation of the Disciplinary Committee or at the discretion of the Head of School and the Dean of Students, a student may also be placed on Enrollment Review at any point in the year for a repeated and ongoing failure to meet Deerfield’s expectations. This determination is made in consultation with a Review Committee (the adults in the community who work most closely with the student). The specific nature of the concerns will determine the exact composition of the group; typically, some or all of the following adults are included in the decision-making process: classroom teachers, faculty resident and/or advisor, co-curricular supervisor, Academic Dean, and class dean. The duration of a student’s time on Enrollment Review may vary, but will be no less than two complete terms.

The entire faculty will discuss the progress of students placed on Enrollment Review at the end of each term. At the end of two complete terms, the Review Committee will make a recommendation for further action to the Head of School and the Dean of Students.

As with probation, a student placed on Enrollment Review is asked not only to change the negative behaviors and attitudes that caused concern, but also to actively make positive contributions to the school community. Failure to respond to this requirement will result in the student’s dismissal. Similarly, students who violate a major school rule while on Enrollment Review will likely be dismissed. 

Drug and Alcohol Assessment

A drug and alcohol assessment by a professional drug and alcohol counselor is normally required after a disciplinary event involving drugs or alcohol. The drug and alcohol counselor typically comes to campus to interview the student. A written report is generated. Follow-up meetings with a member of the counseling staff are required to discuss and/or implement the recommendations of the assessment. The written report is shared with parents.

A drug and alcohol assessment is also a requirement after a Sanctuary admission to the Health Center (see Sanctuary Policy).

From time to time, the counseling staff or a dean may have concern about a student and require an alcohol/drug assessment even if a violation of a school rule concerning alcohol or drugs has not been documented.

Whenever a drug and alcohol assessment is required by the Academy, compliance with all assessment recommendations is mandatory. The cost of testing/assessment is the financial responsibility of the parents and will be billed to the student’s account.

College Notification

The Academy maintains and benefits from a relationship with colleges and universities that is based on openness and trust. When a college or university asks whether a student has been suspended and/or placed on disciplinary probation at any time during his/her high school career, the student must answer the question honestly. As well the student must send a letter with the appropriate applications; a copy of this letter must be provided to the Deerfield College Advising Office by the time of application.

If the infraction occurs after college applications have been submitted, the same expectation for notification applies: a student is required to send a letter of explanation. The student’s college advisor may also report the infraction and the Academy’s response.

Regardless of application requirements, the Academy will report to colleges any infraction involving dishonesty (academic or otherwise), theft and harassment, or any infraction that results in a separation from the Academy of more than five days. If a senior is required to withdraw or does not graduate on schedule, the student’s college advisor will notify the colleges or other programs to which the student applied.

Observance of the college notification policy is a matter of academic honesty.

Returning to Campus

Students who withdraw (facing disciplinary action) or are dismissed may not return to campus for one calendar year, except with the explicit permission of the Dean of Students.