Huntsville City Schools leaders stand by Code of Conduct

Published: Mar. 9, 2016 at 10:58 PM CST|Updated: Apr. 6, 2016 at 11:34 PM CDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

HUNTSVILLE, AL (WAFF) - The Huntsville City School District stands by the district Code of Conduct after threatening to expel a student for posting a fight video to Snapchat.

The district dismissed the principal's request to expel the student Tuesday but said the rules still stand. That means students in the future could face similar harsh punishments for posting videos shot inside the school online.

Attorney Lee Nation represented the Grissom student who was almost expelled for posting the fight video to Snapchat.

MORE: Huntsville City Schools reverses principal's decision to try to expel student over fight video

Nation said the district violated his client's first amendment rights and as long as those policies are on the books, there's nothing to stop this from happening in the future.

The student's family said after seeing the video, the principal gave the student a 3.25D infraction. That's listed as "inappropriate material with intent" and is defined as "sending, transmitting, accessing, uploading, downloading, or distributing inappropriate, obscene, offensive, profane, threatening, harassing, pornographic, or sexually explicit materials intended to harm or demean staff or students."

Huntsville City Schools Spokesperson Keith Ward said each infraction is handled on a case by case basis and at expulsion hearings, a panel will look at what factors were involved in the case. He said he does not know why the district suddenly reversed the principal's decision yesterday evening, but that it's not uncommon.

The Currie family attorney said the school violated his clients freedom of speech.

"Because these students have not shed their rights at the gate of the school, because we're not living in a police state, these first amendment rights are in place and I believe that any sort of punishment would be trampling on these students first amendment rights," Nation said.

19 students were expelled from Huntsville City Schools in the 2014-2015 school year.

Butler High School
Disruptive 1
Possession of a firearm    2
Possession of a knife   1
Total 4


Disruptive                        1
Total 1

Grissom High School

Alcohol use                     1
Total 1

Huntsville High School

Defiance 1
Inciting a disturbance       1
Total 2

Johnson High School

Defiance                         1
Total 1

Lee High School

Bomb threat                    1
Total 1

McNair Jr. High

Defiance                         1
Profanity 1
Other incident 1
Total 3

Monte Sano Elementary School

Other incident                  1
Total 1

Ridgecrest Elementary School

Inciting a disturbance        1
Total 1

Whitesburg Middle School

Defiance 1
Unauthorized absence        1
Total   2

Williams Middle School

Threat/Intimidation              2
Total 2

Huntsville City School Spokesperson Keith Ward sent the following statement:

The Federal Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) prevents the school district from releasing any information on a specific student's case. The Huntsville City Schools Student Code of Conduct has technology infractions referenced under 1.19, 2.36, and 3.25, with details listed under the Technology Infractions Table.  Any violations of the Code of Conduct are reviewed and appropriate discipline is administered on a case by case basis.