Student Handbook

2017 – 2018

Student Handbook

This Handbook is a ready reference so that each student will have full information concerning those things that relate to daily attendance at the school. The rules and regulations of the school have been developed for the purpose of providing each student a safe, pleasant and rewarding school experience.

Our Vision

Maple Hill School with multiple locations in BC will provide education for students from around the world.

Our Mission

The excellent academic program, which equips students for post-secondary education, includes in-school instruction as well as inquiry-based learning at our attractive campus and on field trips and excursions.  At Maple Hill School, we also have a strong focus on developing character, service in our community, and cultivating a worldview consistent with a global international focus. 

Core Values 

All members of Maple Hill School are responsible for co-creating an effective and proper learning environment.  This means that students and staff should conduct themselves in a manner that upholds the school’s core values:

Dignity:  Because each person is worthy of honor and respect, each member of the school will be responsible for creating a non-threatening environment free of discrimination, prejudice and hatred.

Respect:  Acting with courtesy and respect towards one’s self, others and the school property includes protecting the privacy and property of others.

Integrity: To be accountable for their actions and be truthful in word and action or to refrain from hiding or compromising the truth. This value includes always acting lawfully.

Safety:  Staff and students should do everything in their power to promote a safe environment for themselves and others, including the prevention of danger or injury.

Leadership:  Only when students take ownership of their own learning and work towards continually exceeding expectations can they fully reach their potential as leaders.

Fairness: Everyone should do everything in their power to treat others fairly and equitably. Everyone should expect to be treated fairly and also treat others the same.

Grit: The pursuit of goals with passion and perseverance will bring a student success and the opportunity to make a positive difference in the world around them.

Code of Conduct

  1. Anticipated Absence: Students are expected to inform their teachers of any anticipated absence from school commitments. Students who miss school are expected to make up missed work.
  1. Excused Absence: If an absence is approved by a teacher prior to the absence it is an excused absence.  Examples include illness, injury or unavoidable circumstances.  Any long-term illness should be accompanied by a note from a doctor.

An excused absence does not qualify for attendance marks or bonus marks; a student must be present at school to qualify for attendance marks.

  1. Unexcused Absence: Any unexcused absence will be recorded at the office. Sufficient absences may result in a student being unable to receive credit for a course as he/she has not received enough instructional hours.
  1. Late Policy: Arriving late disrupts the classroom activities and impacts the learning experience of others.  When a student anticipates being late to class, he/she should communicate with the teacher or the school office.
  1. Late or Missed Work: The responsibility for communicating with the teacher and making up missed work for a class lies with the student, recognizing that there is an academic penalty for any missed or late assignments.
  1. Leaving Campus: Students are expected to remain on the school campus during school hours except during lunch breaks, when they may opt to leave campus with written parental/guardian permission. During this absence from campus there will be limited or no supervision.  Students are cautioned to stay in groups and to refrain from placing themselves at risk.
  1. Academic Dishonesty: This includes but is not limited to plagiarizing or cheating on academic assignments. Depending on the nature of the offense, this may result in significant consequences for the student or students involved.
  1. Personal Dishonesty: This constitutes actions such as lying, stealing, or deliberately disregarding instructions from a faculty or staff member. This could include failure to accurately report information.  Removing unauthorized materials from the school may be considered stealing. 
  1. Public Display of Affection at School: Physical contact including, but not limited to, intimate touching, hand holding, fondling, cuddling, kissing, etc. at school or a school-sponsored activity between two students typically in a relationship can be offensive and disrespectful to their peers.  Inappropriate PDA will not be tolerated. 
  1. Bullying, Harassment and Intimidation: A student is subjected to bullying when he or she is repeatedly the target of negative verbal or physical actions by one or more students.  Bullying also includes “cyber-bullying,” which is the sending or posting of harmful and/or cruel images via the internet, cell phones or on any other social media, mechanism, or device.  Bullying/harassment will be treated as serious infractions by the school. 

Bullying occurs when a student is subjected to repeated unwelcome behavior, often as a result of an imbalance of power. A student is subjected to bullying when he or she is repeatedly the target of negative verbal or physical actions by one or more students. Bullying also includes “cyber-bullying,” which is the sending or posting of harmful and/or cruel images/content via the internet, cell phones or on any other social medium, mechanism, or device. Any student who is the victim of bullying or cyberbullying is strongly encouraged to promptly report the matter verbally or in writing to any other faculty or staff member with whom the student is comfortable. Bullying/harassment will be treated as serious infractions by the school.

An individual who learns or suspects that a student is being bullied should take appropriate steps to intervene, to the extent that he or she can do so without danger or peril to himself/herself or others, and report such information to a faculty member as soon as possible. The school shall take steps to promote the safety of the alleged victim and shall investigate allegations of bullying. If the allegation is found to be credible, appropriate disciplinary action will be taken, as defined at the sole discretion of the school. 

  1. Sexual Harassment: Sexual harassment between students or between students and school employees is prohibited and violates the school’s core values.  In some cases, sexual harassment is a criminal offence and is punishable by a court of law. Maple Hill School takes seriously all complaints of sexual harassment or retaliation, and will investigate each complaint thoroughly and promptly.  A student or parent who wishes to report any alleged violation of the school’s sexual harassment policy should contact the Head of Schools or administrator.  Maple Hill School reserves the right to act unilaterally to end sexual harassment where such intervention is deemed warranted. 
  1. Vandalism and Damage to Property:  Accident can happen.  Damage to any school property should be reported immediately to the staff.  Generally, students are not charged for accidental damage when notice of damage is promptly given.  However, deliberate or irresponsible destruction of school property will generally be repaired at the expense of the student(s) involved and result in disciplinary action.  If the nature of the offense is criminal, the police can be involved. 
  1. Inappropriate Items/Weapons:  Unless authorized or permitted, the school prohibits (on campus or any school-sponsored off-campus trip or excursion) the possession of any firearm, imitation firearm, pellet gun, bow-type weapon, knife, taser, or any other dangerous weapon, ammunition or fireworks.  Generally, this includes any item that poses a risk to one’s self or others.  If in doubt about whether something is allowed, we expect students or parents to ask a faculty member before bringing it onto the school grounds. 
  1. Gambling: The school prohibits gambling of any kind, including gambling over the internet. 
  1. Tobacco Policy: In compliance with provincial regulations, smoking is not permitted on Maple Hill School campus.  The use, purchase or distribution of tobacco or nicotine delivery devices, including but not limited to, devices such as vapor pens, hookah pens and e-cigarettes, is strictly prohibited.  All smokers who wish to smoke must do so outside, off school grounds, and at least 6 meters from any open doorway or window. 
  1. Drugs and Alcohol:  Students may not use, possess, purchase or distribute alcohol, or other unauthorized mind-altering drugs or substances, and/or any paraphernalia associated with the use of these items, and may not intentionally misuse products that can act as inhalants, while at the school or immediately before coming to school. 

Students engaging in the use of these substances or devices are subject to disciplinary action including dismissal from school.  Students remaining present while others are violating this rule may also face disciplinary action.

  1. Drug and Alcohol Use Intervention: The school’s Drug and Alcohol Use Intervention policy provides students with a way to access support around alcohol and substance abuse issues without concern that reaching out for help will trigger the disciplinary process. The use and abuse of alcohol and drugs can lead to serious health consequences, both short-term and long-term; as a way of letting students know that their health and safety are of paramount concern, the school encourages students to ask for help should they find themselves impaired, ill, or struggling with substance abuse. Any student may invoke this policy on his or her own behalf, or on behalf of another student.

Parents’ Role in Alcohol/Drug Prevention: Parents are expected to support the school’s drug, alcohol, and tobacco policies. It is critical that parents reinforce the message that students’ use and/or possession of alcohol, drugs and/or illegal substances is not tolerated.

  1. Pornography: Any student involved in pornography will be subject to immediate dismissal.
  1. Illegal Activity:  Any student involved in illegal activity will be subject to immediate dismissal.
  1. Mobile Device/Phone Policy: Students are responsible for following the rules for mobile device usage established by each teacher. In general, use of phones during class time for non-academic reasons is forbidden.  Full details of the school policy for mobile and electronic devices is provided in the separate Mobile Phone & Technology Policy 323. 
  1. Cleanliness: While the school hires dedicated staff to maintain the cleanliness of the facilities, everyone is responsible for maintaining the cleanliness of common rooms and public areas by disposing of their own waste and not leaving their property in undesignated locations.
  1. Dress Code & Appearance: Students are expected to dress with modesty and neatness in order to facilitate personal and classroom focus on educational studies.  Closed-toed shoes must be worn and clothing must be clean and neat in appearance.

Discipline 

Maple Hill School is committed to establishing and maintaining high standards of conduct in the interest of maintaining safe, positive learning environments with rules that are clearly articulated.  We aim to create a structure which provides tools and strategies for school staff to positively affect how students behave and interact with one another.  The focus of this approach is on establishing, maintaining and reinforcing the positive behavior of the majority of students by providing clear expectations, but it also addresses problem behavior and misconduct.  Student misconduct is any violation of the policies and procedures of Maple Hill School or the rules of the classroom that the student is attending.

Rights and Responsibilities Overview

Students have the right to:

  • Access to quality education
  • Be safe and secure in the school environment (physically, emotionally and socially)
  • Be treated with dignity, respect, and fairness
  • Be heard by school personnel

Students have the responsibility to:

  • Be ready to learn and actively participate in their education
  • Attend school regularly and punctually
  • Ensure that their conduct contributes to the other students’ rights as described above
  • Refrain from and not tolerate bullying behavior directed toward other students
  • Co-operate with teachers and other authorized employees of the school

Parents have the responsibility to:

  • Support the students in the achievement of the school’s expectations
  • To be courteous with all staff in the resolution of misconduct by any student

Maple Hill School has the responsibility to:

  • Always act in the best educational interests of each student
  • Have discipline practices that are fair, objective, consistent and reasonable
  • To avoid any use of threats and other measures that are considered coercive
  • Use behavior expectations that are age and developmentally appropriate
  • Include a system of early and ongoing communication with parents

General Discipline Guidelines

The expectations of the Code of Conduct (pages 4-6) are included in the Maple Hill School Policy #305 and are made known to students and staff at the beginning of the year, and may be accessed on our website.  The specific procedures for dealing with student misconduct, including the conditions for suspensions, expulsion and the appeals process are clearly outlined below.

Disciplinary Probation:

Students may be placed on Disciplinary Probation and be held to a higher standard of accountability for their behavior.  While on probation, continued violation of the Code of Conduct may result in consideration for dismissal.  Even after the completion of a period of Disciplinary Probation, should a student violate the Code of Conduct again, for the same behavior, it will most likely result in dismissal from Maple Hill School.  Formal Warnings and Disciplinary Probation may be included in the student’s Permanent Record.

Parent Involvement

It is incumbent on parents/guardian to be involved in the discipline and conduct of their children as student issues are handled directly by teacher and administrators. If a student is having an issue with another student, parents should not attempt to deal with the other student or that student’s family directly regarding that matter.  Please speak to the appropriate school administrator for guidance on how to deal with a school-related issue.

Classroom Standards:

Students are expected to come to class on time, fully prepared and with the proper materials.  Punctuality in arriving to class and submitting assignments on the due date are highly valued.  If a student is late to class, the student is expected to have a valid reason.  Whenever a student misses a class without a valid excuse, the responsibility for making up missed work resides with the student.

Students who miss an in-class graded assessment may receive a zero for that assessment if their absence is unexcused.  When there is a major assessment or a paper or a project missing, a penalty may result in dropping the grade for that assessment or assignment.

Students should expect varied assessments in all of their courses throughout a semester.  Specifically, all courses have major cumulative assessments/exams.  Midterm and final exams have been scheduled on the school calendar.

Homework is an important tool in the academic experience of our students, supporting their independent learning development, organizational skills, and time management.  Students who experience difficulty completing assignments should seek support from their teachers.

Student grades will be based on student policy No.333

Academic Integrity:

Plagiarism is presenting work as original, when, in fact, it is not.  It applies broadly to the failure to acknowledge the use of another person’ phrasing or ideas.  It also applies to re-use of one’s own work in more than one course.

It is an important skill for every student to learn the accepted procedures in acknowledging the work of another writer, which includes the use of in text citations and a work cited.  Sloppy research echniques can lead to problems of plagiarism at University.

Academic Warnings & Probation:

Generally, a student may be placed on Academic Probation upon recommendation to the Head of School by the faculty in either of the following circumstances:

  • Two grades of D+ or below at the end of a semester
  • One grade of F at the end of a semester

Academic Warning:  In certain circumstances, a student may receive an Academic Warning from the Head of School where the student’s academic record is of concern, but falls short of qualifying for Academic Probation.  Academic warning and possibly probation may be given to students who fail in their responsibility to academic integrity.

Students who are placed on Academic Probation are required to take part in the after-school programs offered by Maple Hill School until the next grading period, at which time this condition may be re-evaluated.

Given the seriousness of Academic Probation, the decision of the faculty to remove a student from probationary status may be based on both the student’s academic record and effort marks.  Students who have been on Academic Probation for three semesters will likely e reviewed by the Head of School and the faculty.  The school, in its sole discretion, may recommend that the student be dismissed from the school.  In such circumstances, the school will work with the student and family to find a more suitable option for the student. 

Appeals Policy

 

Maple Hill School has in place the following policy and procedure for appealing the decision of a staff member at Maple Hill School:

Visa/Study Permits

Maple Hill School will provide the required documents for international students to apply for or renew visa/study permits.  It is imperative that the student begins the process three months in advance of the expiration date of their expiry date of the visa or study permit.  The student must have a valid study permit for the duration of the program.

Guardianship/Homestay

MHS requires that students 18 and under be under the direct supervision of a responsible adult (a person or persons over 25 years of age) while living in BC.  Independent student living is not acceptable and is counterproductive to the learning environment.

Homestay parents or guardians can look after the students and help support their learning goals.  They help immerse the student in Canadian society and also provide valuable structure and responsibilities that help with the student’s educational goals.

After School Programs

The academic program is designed to challenge each student, develop critical thinking skills, and encourage an analysis of knowledge in the disciplines.  Most importantly, we hope that the classroom experience will enrich our students’ lives and inspire them to continue learning.

Teachers are the first stop when students need extra help.  Teachers can provide advice and extra materials to help them in their learning.  Students are encouraged to use peer tutoring; however at Maple Hill School noncredit after school enrichment programs are available to students.  Interested students may request help from their teachers or at the office for finding a suitable program.

The After-School Program is provided each day to all students and the purpose of these programs is to offer students the opportunity to study topics that are important to their overall academic program.  Students may also ask the supervisor for help on specific problems.  This time is meant to build upon, not substitute, regularly scheduled academic courses.

Bonding Statement

Maple Hill School is accredited as a Group 4 Independent School by the BC Ministry of Education.   Maple Hill School is licensed and bonded in accordance with Section 8 of the INDEPENDENT SCHOOL REGULATION.  See the policy manual for more information.

As a bonded school, Maple Hill School provides the peace of mind for parents and students that their tuition fees are safe and a full education will be provided to each and every student.

Student Records and Transcripts

Students’ records are stored securely and safely in a locked cabinet at Maple Hill School.  Each student’s file contains student progress reports, legal and/or medical alert documents, emergency contact information, transcripts with grades, extracurricular involvement, commendations, formal comments and letters involving any major discipline infractions.

Grades and Honors

The Honor Roll is compiled at the end of each semester.  To qualify, a student must meet the following criteria:  maintain an average of B or better, and all effort marks must be at least “Satisfactory.”

High Distinction is awarded to students with at least a B+ average, with a higher number of A grades than B grades, excellent grades on end-of-term assessments, a rigorous course load with no grade below B-, and all effort marks during the year at least “Satisfactory.”

Head of School’s Commendation is awarded to students with no grade lower than an A- at the end of each semester.

Assistance with University Selection

Choosing a university is a complex and challenging task for students and their families.  At Maple Hill School, we offer help in assessing students’ interests, weighing the various factors and gaining a sense of what the student has in mind while researching universities.

We offer informed advice to students and their parents at every stage in the transition from Maple Hill School to the future.  We strive to help a student identify a group of universities that meet the student’s needs academically and that will provide an appropriate environment for a student’s continuing personal and intellectual growth.  Our counsellor can also guide the students in the application process to ensure that they are on track for admittance to the schools of their choice.

The submission of academic transcripts and letters of recommendation is a standard part of the college admissions process.  In addition to the recent Student Transcript Service (see Appendix I, page 17), whereby a student can send electronic transcripts to prospective universities free of charge, Maple Hill School staff will be pleased to send letters of recommendations to colleges whenever the student declares an intent to apply.  The school however, does not share recommendation letters with students or parents.

Communication

Communication between the home and school is critical in keeping parents/guardians informed of the progress or difficulty that their son/daughter is experiencing.  This communication can occur in both informal and formal ways.

Informal Communication

We encourage contact from the home regarding any questions or concerns that a parent/guardian might have about their child’s progress, marks, or course selection.  As we are a small school, we are more flexible than larger institutions when it comes to addressing individual concerns.

Please contact the school at 604-285-9665 to speak to an administrator, academic advisor or teacher.  Teachers will also provide their school email addresses to students on the first day of classes.

Formal Communication

We will have a midterm report and an end of the semester report at the end of each semester during the year.

Safety, Privacy and Security
Security and Emergencies

Maple Hill School takes the safety of the students and community very seriously.  There are systems in place in the event of an emergency on campus, and regular fire drills, earthquake drills and lockdown drills are conducted to make all those on campus aware of the procedures.

Accident and Medical Alert Policy

If any student is seriously injured or ill, the administration will call an ambulance immediately.  The first aid attendant on duty will administer first aid treatment in the meantime and a first aid kit is always on hand at the front desk or taken along on field trips.  Parents/Guardians will be contacted in the case of an accident or medical emergency.

Valuables

Large sums of money or valuables should be left at home.  Thefts of articles in school are uncommon; however, when something is stolen, the stolen item is rarely returned.  Please do not bring valuable personal property to school.  The school will not accept responsibility of lost or stolen items.

Internet Safety

Students are advised to refrain from giving out personal information over the internet to someone who is unknown to them.  Students, faculty, and staff are expected to keep their passwords private and to protect the security of their computers/data.  It is also recommended that users change their passwords regularly.  Passwords are never to be written down.  All devices should be password protected, including but not limited to laptops, mobile phones, and personal tablets.  If any members of the community believe that password information has been compromised, they are encouraged to change it immediately.

Privacy:

Maple Hill School reserves the right to examine material stored on or transmitted from our facilities and through our Wi-Fi if there is a potential violation of our Acceptable Use Policy or a legal violation.  Access to electronic data will be granted to technicians or administrators in order to address issues, perform maintenance, or respond to an emergency situation.  These designated technicians will not access electronic data unless necessary and will respect the privacy of those users.

Maple Hill School takes seriously the confidentiality of students’ and teachers’ information and pictures, names and information shared is under the direction of the MHS Privacy Officer.

Refund Policy

In the event that an applicant cannot come to Canada or is withdrawn from Maple Hill School, the following refund policy will apply.  All requests for a refund must be made in writing with the original Letter of Acceptance and receipt attached.  All documents must be presented to the school to process the refund.

Full refund, less application fee and administration fee of CAD $300 if a study permit is not approved by Immigration Canada.  (Students must include the letter of rejection from the Canadian Embassy.)

Two thirds (2/3) of the tuition fee if the student withdraws prior to the commencement of the program.

One half (1/2) of the tuition fee if the student withdraws any time between commencement and the end of the first calendar month of the program.

No refund of the tuition fee if the student withdraws after the first calendar month of the program.

No refund of the tuition fee if the student is found to be in violation of school rules or the participation agreement on the application form.  Students who become local students after tuition fees are paid will not be eligible for refunds other than as stated in the refund policy above.

In case of sudden closure of school, all tuition fees and deposits will be reimbursed to students.

Miscellaneous
Electronic Devices: 

Students are encouraged to bring their own devices (laptop, cell phones, iPads, etc.) and they may use them during breaks, lunchtime and after school at their own leisure, but according to the school’s electronic policy and guidelines and the Code of Conduct.  They may not use them during class time unless the teacher gives permission and only as part of the intended lesson.

Use of Languages Other Than English:

One of the most important skills the students will be learning in Canada is fluency in the English language, and therefore students are expected to speak English at school unless otherwise allowed by the teacher for the reason of helping a student understand the material.

Lunch Time/Food and Drinks: 

Students are encouraged to bring their own lunches; otherwise they may purchase lunch from nearby restaurants.  Students must sign out before leaving campus for lunch.  Drinking water is available at the school but students should bring their own drinking container.

Enrollment

Students enrolled in four or more courses per semester (two courses in the short semester) will be considered full time students.  Students enrolled in less than four courses (two in the short semester) will be considered part time students.  Immigration Canada requires all international students to be full time students.

Payment of School Fees

The admissions advisors can be contacted for information about tuition fees and payment schedules.

Daily Physical Activity (DPA): 

The BC Ministry of Education requires that all students complete Daily Physical Activity of 150 minutes per week in order to graduate.  The DPA can be completed at school, home or through community sports programs.  Students are required to record the date and times of their daily activity on a DPA form provided by the school.

School Pictures: 

Individual pictures, class and whole school pictures are taken each year.  Pictures are available for purchase.

School Calendar

A school calendar listing all school days and all vacation days is posted on the MHS website.

References:

  • Toronto District School Board, ON
  • St. Michael’s College School, ON
  • South Shore Regional School Board, NS
  • Canadian Mental Health Association of BC
  • Valley Christian School, BC
  • Kingsway Regional High School, NJ
  • New London High School, CT
  • Society of Christian Schools, BC
  • City of Vancouver Academy, BC
  • Victoria High School, BC