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Search and Seizure

School district property is held in public trust by the Board. School district authorities may, without a search warrant, search students, student lockers, personal effects, desks, work areas, or student vehicles or protected student areas (a student's body, clothing worn or carried by the student, a student's pocketbook, briefcase, duffel bag, book bag, backpack, knapsack, or any other container used by the student for holding or carrying personal belongings of any kind and in the possession or immediate proximity of the student) based on a reasonable and articulable suspicion that a school district policy, rule, regulation or law has been violated. 

The search shall be in a manner reasonable in scope to maintain order and discipline in the schools, promote the educational environment, and protect the safety and welfare of students, employees and visitors to the school district facilities. The furnishing of a locker, desk or other facility or space owned by the school and provided as a courtesy to a student, even if the student provides the lock for it, shall not create a protected student area and shall not give rise to an expectation of privacy with respect the locker, desk, or other facility. 

School authorities may seize any illegal, unauthorized or contraband materials discovered in the search. Items of contraband may include, but are not limited to, nonprescription controlled substances, marijuana, cocaine, amphetamines, barbiturates, apparatus used for controlled substances, alcoholic beverages, tobacco, weapons, explosives, poisons and stolen property. Such items are not to be possessed by a student while they are on school district property or on property within the jurisdiction of the school district; while on school owned and/or operated school or chartered buses; while attending or engaged in school activities; and while away from school grounds if misconduct will directly affect the good order, efficient management and welfare of the school district. 

Possession of such items will be grounds for disciplinary action including suspension or expulsion and may be reported to local law enforcement officials. The board believes that illegal, unauthorized or contraband materials may cause material and substantial disruption to the school environment or presents a threat to the health and safety of students, employees, or visitors on the school district premises or property within the jurisdiction of the school district. 

A school official can search students or protected student areas if the school official has reasonable suspicion the search will produce evidence the student has violated either the law or a school rule. The search must be conducted in a manner reasonably related to the objectives of the search and not excessively intrusive in light of the age and gender of the student and the violation. The school official conducting the search of a student must be the same sex as the student. 

School officials cannot search a student or a protected student area if the search is unreasonable in light of the age or sex of the student or the nature of the suspected violation. School officials also cannot strip search or conduct a body cavity search of a student or use a drug sniffing animal to search a student. Either prior to a search of a student or a protected student area, or within a time reasonably practicable after a search, school officials must notify the student of the search.