PS 188 Discipline Policy

We envision our school as a learning community that treats children and adults with respect and kindness.  We want children to value diversity of ideas, to develop compassion, and the ability to see themselves in another’s shoes.  As children mature and participate in communal classroom work, they broaden their ability to see things from varied perspectives and to work with people with viewpoints other than their own.  They can then take their places in the world as empowered adults who can make good choices in their lives, good changes in the world, and work well with others in their occupational and social communities.

To this end, we at PS 188, in accordance with Department of Education guidelines, work to ensure that our school is a place “where all students learn and all staff teach in a safe, secure and orderly environment.”  We define discipline as helping children develop self-control and self-motivation as we keep our community safe for all members.  We work to maintain a safe physical and emotional environment where children and grown-ups can ask questions and are vulnerable, where we can expose ourselves in trying to learn and improve, and where there is mutual respect among all students and staff.  As issues and challenges come up, our consistent message is: Problems must be solved through non-violent means.

Unacceptable behaviors:

  • Teasing
  • Aggressive verbal behavior—cursing and other threatening or abusive speech to children or adults in our community or the larger community (this may include racial or sexual comments)
  • Hitting or other physically aggressive acts
  • Disruptive behavior
  • Dangerous behavior—our concern is not only when a child might hurt others but also when she/ he puts herself/ himself in an unsafe situation as well; for example: hiding in the yard or classroom, climbing bathroom stalls
  • Misuse of materials or other people’s property
  • Stealing, defacing school or personal property


The first step taken in any disciplinary action is to restore a sense of safety and bring people into self-control.  This may mean time-out or a comforting conversation with an adult; whatever will help a child to be able to face a problem rationally.

We view discipline as a process.  We deal with each problem individually, and for each unacceptable behavior there is a range of consequences and actions a teacher or staff member will take.  This is dependent on the frequency of this behavior, progress of the child, age of the child and severity of the behavior.  The specific situation dictates which consequences will be used, revisited or skipped.  We want the outcome of the consequences to reinforce not only the essence of what is unacceptable to the group but also how one’s behavior impacts on the group and on oneself.

Sexual Misconduct – Chancellor’s Memorandum

  • Every employee and officer of the Department of Education has an affirmative obligation to immediately report to the School Commissioner of Investigation for the New York City School District (212-510-1400), any information concerning sexual misconduct involving students by Department of Education Officers, employees or others connected with school program or services, such as volunteers. This obligation extends to sexual misconduct on and off school premises; moreover, employees and officers are required to make this report regardless of the source of the information whether it comes from a students, parent, or staff member.
  • The knowing failure of an employee or officer to report sexual misconduct may result in disciplinary action including removal from employment or office. Any employee or officer who knowingly and intentionally makes a false report of sexual misconduct may be subject to disciplinary action, including removal from office or employment.
    Chancellor’s Regulation Reminders
  • Student may never be used to render personal service for a teacher.
  • Business enterprise may not be conducted on school property and staff members may not make authorized collections.
  • Students may not, as a disciplinary measure be denied lunch, be placed in the hall, be told to stay home, be sent home without proper authorization, or have personal property destroyed or thrown away (parent must be provided with an opportunity to retrieve such property.
  • No personal mail may be posted at school expense.
  • No drug or medication is to be administered by a teacher or an unauthorized staff member.
  • No instructional machine or piece of equipment may ever be removed or borrowed from the school without permission and receipt from the principal
  • Funds may not be solicited from students without authorization from the Principal.
  • No staff member leaving the school building may offer access to any person from “outside. Please ensure that the door is secured by slamming it shut.
  • All entering and exiting the building must be conducted via the main entrance.
  • No student may be sent home during the course of the day without administrative authorization. No parent may pick-up a student from class without office administration.
  • No person who is not on the blue card may pick-up a student.