SUPERINTENDENT INTERPRETATION
 
Interpretation's Date: July 21, 1997
by superintendent Henry Marockie
Section: IV. Students
 
Interpretation

July 21, 1997

Dr. Richard Hoover
Superintendent
Upshur County Schools
102 Smithfield Street
Buckhannon, West Virginia 26201

Dear Dr. Hoover:

This is in response to your letter of July 2, 1997, in which you request an interpretation from our office regarding whether or not a school system is obligated to provide transportation for students required to stay for after-school detention.

There is no law or court decision which has held that the county must provide transportation for students who are required to stay for after-school detention. Even in Cathe A., Guardian of C.E.A. vs. Doddridge County Board of Education, et al., the most recent Supreme Court decision involving the obligation of the school system to provide alternative education programs in cases where the student is not a threat to teachers, school personnel, or other students, the Court does not speak to the issue of transportation.

However, our office strongly recommends using alternatives other than after-school detention. After-school detention could cause great hardships on parents who have no means of transporting their children from the school to home if they are unable to take the bus. The children may in turn be placed in danger if they are unable to obtain a ride home after detention. In some counties there are children who live more than an hour from their school. It seems there may be some other equally effective means of discipline other than after-school detention for these students.

If your county chooses to use after-school detention as a measure of discipline, our office has consistently stated that the county must have a policy regarding the after-school detention and the parents must be informed at the beginning of the school year through student handbooks and other means that they

Dr. Richard Hoover
Page Two
July 21, 1997

are responsible for transporting their children from the school to home in cases of after-school detention. Also, if your county has the means to provide transportation for these students it may wish to do so.

Again, let us reiterate, the county is not mandated to provide transportation; however, we urge the county to provide it if at all possible or to eliminate after- school detentions in cases where it is impossible for the parents to provide transportation for their child.

Hoping I have been of service, I am

Sincerely,

/s/

Henry Marockie
State Superintendent of Schools

07a/ls062