Student Organizations (Secondary Schools)
File: IGDA (pdf)
Adopted: December 17, 1984
Revised: June 27, 1991, February 11, 2003
Associated Regulation: IGDA-R
It is the policy of the District to encourage the organization and operation of student organizations in the secondary schools and to permit such organizations to meet on school premises during noninstructional time. Student organizations may be student-initiated and led.
School-sponsored activities in which students participate may be established at the discretion of the District. These activities are considered part of the school program and include, but are not limited to, school yearbook, school newspaper, choir, band, forensics, thespians, athletics, intramurals, and other secondary school activities and organizations for which the associated staff member receives extra duty pay under the negotiated agreement. This policy shall not be construed to limit the District’s discretion to allocate its resources to further the District’s educational mission. Nor shall this policy be construed to apply to school-sponsored activities.
School-Sponsored Academic Organizations
- A student academic organization may be considered for school-sponsored status if one or more members of the school faculty, with the consent of the school principal, submit a written application to and for approval by the Superintendent or his or her designee and:
a. The organization serves as a direct extension of one or more classes actually taught at the organization’s secondary school (e.g. Future Business Leaders of America);
b. The organization enhances the educational experience of participating students and supplements their course work within the educational program(s) of the secondary school (e.g., a French Club); or
c. The organization directly relates to the curriculum at its secondary school, not merely a course taught within the District. In order to satisfy this requirement, the Superintendent or designee must find that (i) the subject matter of the organization is actually taught in a regularly offered course at the school; (ii) the subject matter of the organization concerns the body of courses at the school as a whole; (iii) participation in the organization is required for a particular course at the school; or (iv) participation in the organization results in academic credit for a course at the school.
d. An organization that relates to abstract educational goals in a tangential way (e.g. chess club) or relates only to topics that are discussed within the broader curriculum (e.g. a student branch of a political party) is not sufficient to satisfy the criteria for school-sponsorship. This policy shall not be construed to require the District to sponsor any particular academic organization even if the organization meets the foregoing criteria. Instead, the District retains the discretion to allocate District resources among curricular offerings and organizations in a manner that best furthers the District’s educational mission.
- If an academic organization is approved for school-sponsored status, one or more faculty members shall be authorized to supervise the organization. Such faculty members shall teach in the core academic area relating to the subject matter of the organization, shall supervise or serve as advisor for the planning and direction of the organization, and shall attend all such meetings and activities. Nonschool persons may not direct, conduct, control or regularly attend the meetings or activities of school-sponsored student organizations.
- Membership in school-sponsored academic organizations shall be voluntary and shall be open to but limited to all students currently enrolled at the sponsoring secondary school. Such organizations may establish academic qualifications for membership where necessarily related to the purposes of the organization. No student shall be denied membership on account of his or her race, color, national origin, religion, sexual orientation, or disability (subject to the terms and limitations of the Americans with Disabilities Act and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973). Qualifications based on gender may be imposed only where necessary to preserve the health, safety or welfare of students, or where gender is a bona fide and integral qualification for the activities of the organization.
- The Superintendent or designee shall determine whether and the level at which each school-sponsored academic organization receives District resources beyond meeting space and whether additional District facilities, equipment and materials will be made available for such organization’s use. The District retains the discretion to allocate District resources among curricular offerings and school-sponsored organizations in a manner that best furthers the District’s educational mission.
Student-Initiated and Led Organizations
- Secondary school students shall be permitted to establish student-initiated and led organizations at their school upon the prior approval of the school’s principal. Such approval shall be conditioned on one or more students submitting a written application on a District-approved form and compliance with all governing laws, school discipline rules, and the terms of this policy.
- Neither the District nor any of its secondary schools shall deny equal access to school facilities for meetings of student-initiated and led organizations, or otherwise discriminate against such organizations or their student members, on the basis of the religious, political, philosophical or other content of the speech of such organizations.
- Membership in student-initiated and led organizations shall be voluntary and student initiated, and shall be open to but limited to students currently enrolled at the secondary school.
- Student-initiated and led organizations may conduct meetings on school premises as designated by the building principal, but only during non-instructional time. “Non-instructional time” means time designated by the principal before actual classroom instruction begins or after actual classroom instruction ends. The principal of each secondary school shall develop rules concerning the scheduling of times and facilities that are available for such meetings and activities.
- The meetings of student-initiated and led organizations shall not materially and substantially interfere with the orderly conduct of educational activities within the school and shall not be directed, conducted, controlled or regularly attended by nonschool persons. Each organization shall be responsible for adequate supervision by school staff to the satisfaction of the school principal. School employees may be present at religious meetings only in a nonparticipatory capacity.
- Student-initiated and led organizations shall not be deemed to be sponsored or endorsed by the District or any secondary school in the District. The fact that such organizations are permitted to conduct meetings on school premises and to access school facilities under this policy shall not constitute an expression of District or school support for the purposes of such organizations or the views expressed at any of their meetings.
- Student-initiated and led organizations shall not engage in any activity that is contrary to law or school rules; that disrupts or clearly threatens to disrupt the orderly operation of the school; or that would adversely affect the health, safety or welfare of any student or school employee. Failure to comply with these provisions shall be grounds for revocation of the right to continue meeting under this policy.
- Nothing in this policy shall be construed to require the District to expend public funds beyond the incidental cost of providing space for student-initiated meetings. To the extent that school resources are available, they shall be available on a basis that does not discriminate against any organization on the basis of the content of the speech of the meeting.
- Nothing in this policy shall be construed to authorize any school official to influence the form or content of any prayer or religious activity, to require any person to participate in prayer or religious activity, to compel any school employee to attend any meeting if the meeting is contrary to the beliefs of the employee, or to sanction meetings that are otherwise unlawful.
- Student-initiated and led organizations must apply each school year by written application submitted to the principal and the Superintendent’s designee.
Equal Access Act, 20 U.S.C. §§ 4071-4074
C.R.S. § 22-1-117
C.R.S. § 22-1-118
JF, Student Rights and Responsibilities, and subcodes (all related to student rights)
KF, Community Use of School Facilities
End of File: IGDA