Code of Conduct

Uniforms and Dress Code

Students in the elementary Cogito Program wear uniforms each school day. Students in the junior high as well as the global program are not required to wear uniforms and should follow the appropriate dress code.

In addition to the uniform, the following is expected for Cogito students:

  • closed-toe black shoes (no heels, embellishments, sandals, crocs or boots)
  • hair accessories and jewellery must be understated and coordinate with the Cogito colours.

The exceptions for the dress code are: 

  • Spirit Days:on early dismissal day each month, the Student Leadership Team chooses a theme such as hat day, jersey day or tacky sweater day. Students in the Cogito Program may choose to participate in the theme day and wear non-uniform attire or wear their uniform.
  • the last two weeks in June.

Junior High Dress Code Expectations

  • All students are expected to wear clean, neat clothing that demonstrates personal pride.
  • Collared shirts or tops and t-shirts are acceptable.
  • Jeans and casual fitted pants are acceptable.
  • Pants must be fitted. Underwear cannot be showing.
  • Shoes must be fitted properly. For example, runners must be kept tied up and laces not left loose.
  • Hair must be clean, neat and well-kept.
  • Logos and sayings must be respected and school appropriate. School staff has the final word.
  • Hats are to be removed and kept in lockers.

Physical Education Change Out

Students in all grades are expected to have running shoes for physical education classes. Starting in Grade 4, students are expected to have a change of clothes (t-shirts and shorts or track pants) for physical education classes.

Froshing – Assault and Abduction

Elmer S. Gish, along with all schools in St. Albert, will not tolerate froshing. District policy clearly states that students “will neither initiate, participate in, nor encourage froshing”. Consequences for such behaviour could result in suspension or expulsion.

Drug-Free Schools

All secondary schools in St. Albert are committed to implementing a Protocol Respecting Drug Free Schools. Under this protocol:

  • Possession of or trafficking in illegal drugs in any form is an illegal act utterly incompatible with the School Act.
  • Random patrols of the school may be conducted by school administrators and the RCMP, including canine members. Should these result in detection of an illegal substance, recommendation for expulsion from the school will be the norm.
  • In all cases, parents or legal guardians will be notified.

Personal Sound and Communication Equipment

Junior High Students

The use of cell phones, iPods and other electronic devices is not permitted during class time without special consent from the teacher. All devices are to be turned off and put away during class time. We will confiscate improperly-used electronic devices. The school will not be held responsible for any personal electronic devices if lost or damaged.

Elementary Students

Use of personal sound and communication equipment systems during school time is not consistent with effective and efficient teaching and learning processes. Students are expected to leave such equipment in their lockers. Any student who is concerned about the security of his/her locker may leave this equipment at home or at the office for the day.

Every classroom will have its own set of rules and procedures as determined by the teacher and students in that particular school year. In addition to these classroom rules, the school operates by a set of general regulations and procedures implemented to ensure the health, safety and success for our school community. These general regulations include, but are not limited to the following:

Students will:

  • be diligent in their studies
  • attend school regularly and be on time
  • treat others with respect and use proper manners
  • play safe, “hands off” games that respect personal safety and the safety of others. Examples of dangerous games include tackle football, throwing snowballs or other dangerous objects and play fighting. Such activities are not acceptable.
  • dress appropriately (see Appropriate Dress)
  • treat the school environment with care and respect
  • cooperate fully with staff

The school division has adopted a Code of Student Conduct. Students are expected to comply with this code. A copy is sent home with each student at the beginning of the school year.  Additional copies can be requested from the school office.

Foundations for Success

A document setting out commitments important in achieving success and growth is sent home in the fall. Students, parents and staff are expected to sign the document.


  • to maintain a safe and caring environment in which teaching and learning are maximized
  • to provide instruction, support and encouragement that empower students to become self-disciplined responsible citizens of the school, community and the world

Guiding Principles

We believe that:

  • Success is a key factor in the development of self worth and positive behaviour.
  • Respect for self, others, and the school environment is fundamental for success.
  • Everyone is responsible for his/her behaviour.
  • Everyone is expected to follow the school rules.
  • Clear expectations and communication are important for growth and success.
  • Students will learn acceptable behaviour through the use of a problem solving approach.
  • Teamwork between staff, parents, and students is important in developing positive behaviour, pride and school spirit.

At the beginning of each school year, a copy of the Foundations For Success is sent home to be signed by all concerned. The homeroom teacher will retain the signed copy.

Discipline Approach

Three important levels of discipline are addressed within the school.

1. Preventive Discipline

  • provides instruction, clarification and modelling
  • focuses on effective pro-social behaviour
  • encourages responsibility and respect
  • strategies include:
    • instructional programs such as Health and Lifeskills, and iLEAD Character Education
    • community initiatives such as community fundraisers
    • leadership opportunities such as student council and volunteer roles
    • relationship-building opportunities such as school spirit events, teams and cross-age activities
    • recognition programs such as showcasing student work and awards programs

2.  Supportive Discipline

  • accountability for high expectations
  • low key interventions such as identification of inappropriateness and prompting of acceptable behaviour
  • problem-solving approach including individual, small group and classroom meeting

3.  Intensive Discipline

  • responds to behaviours that are disruptive to a safe and orderly environment
  • frequency, duration and intensity (severity) of behaviours are important factors
  • logical and/or appropriate consequences include but are not limited to:
    • accounting to parents
    • making appropriate apologies, and where possible, restitution
    • being referred to attendance board
    • losing privileges for a time
    • rendering service or serving a detention
    • being temporarily excluded from a class
    • serving an in-school suspension
    • serving an out-of-school suspension
    • agreeing to a contract to improve personal conduct
    • receiving assistance from the police liaison officer
    • being expelled from school
  • grounds for disciplinary action that could lead to suspension or expulsion exist where a student has demonstrated unacceptable behaviour such as:
    • consistently disruptive, defiant behaviours
    • conduct that threatens the safety of students and/or staff
    • behaviours that are a threat to personal safety may result in parent school conferences, suspensions and alternate assignments of programs
    • possession and/or use of a weapon
    • theft
    • possession, trafficking or use of illegal drugs, alcohol or inhalants

Our school division is a partner in the St. Albert and Sturgeon Regional Violence and Threat Risk Assessment (VTRA) Protocol. The regional partnership includes school divisions, emergency services and community agencies, all working together for the safety of all children, youth and families. 

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