Cyber student's request to attend Franklin Regional dance prompts policy discussion
By Daveen Rae Kurutz
Published: Wednesday, Oct. 2, 2013, 5:30 p.m.
Franklin Regional officials plan to develop a policy to enable students who attend charter schools or who are homeschooled to attend school dances sponsored by district organizations.
Superintendent Jamie Piraino said the district was contacted by a parent of a middle school-aged cyber charter student earlier this month who was interested in attending a Sept. 20 dance that the middle school Parent Teacher Organization sponsored.
“Participation is the rule,” Piraino said. “We want to work with them with open arms to get what type of experience the family is looking for that is typical of a Franklin Regional student.”
It's a murky situation, Piraino acknowledged. Students who attend charter schools – which are funded by tax money but run by private organizations – have legal rights when it comes to school activities.
Legally, Piraino said, school districts are required to allow any student enrolled in a charter school – traditional or cyber – to participate in extracurricular activities. However, a school dance isn't the same as soccer or football, Piraino said.
“The challenge is not knowing who is at your dance,” Piraino said. “Behaviorally, you have no jurisdiction with that child other than saying, ‘You can't come back to the dance again.'”
Piraino said administrators weighed the decision carefully.
“It's a social type of activity,” he said. “Having staff be able to identify and deal with students at a dance is important for us to maintain safety and security.”
The student ultimately was permitted to attend the dance. Piraino didn't know if the student chose to or not. In the future, students who live in the district but attend a charter school will be required to meet with administrators. They also will have to fill out a form verifying he or she is in good academic and behavioral standing at their school.
That's the practice followed at the high school for homecoming and prom. At the middle school, students aren't permitted to bring dates or guests from outside of the district.
Piraino said he expect the board to discuss and vote on a policy in the spring.
Daveen Rae Kurutz is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 412-856-7400, ext. 8627.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- 15 spills illegally discharge sewage into Murrysville’s Turtle Creek
- Charges filed in fatal Murrysville crash
- State awards $457K grant for trail in Murrysville area
- Delmont to decide next month on Speedway’s future
- Westmoreland authority: Water with chlorine odor is safe