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JCAB - Searches of Lockers and Students

Searches of lockers and students shall be conducted in accordance with the rules approved by the board. No law enforcement officer except USD 265 police officers may search any locker without a search warrant unless he/she has the consent of the building principal and is accompanied by the principal. 

In order to protect the health, safety or welfare of students under school jurisdiction, building principals, their assistant(s), and school police officers are authorized to search students. School authorities shall not conduct strip searches. All searches shall be carried out in the presence of an adult witness.

Search of Lockers 
The lockers in the schools of the district shall be under supervision of the building principal and assigned to the student for the storage of school materials and clothing necessary to school attendance. Whenever the principal is mentioned in this rule, it shall be construed so as to include “or designated representative.” Students are to be held accountable for anything found in their assigned locker. 
The building principal, or his/her designee, shall have sole custody of the combination or key to all locker locks in a storage place designed to guard against unauthorized access or use. He/she may search any locker at any time he/she believes that the locker contains matter prohibited by law or school regulations (See JCDA-R) from being on school property. Such search may be made without notice to the student to whom such locker has been assigned. Students are prohibited from placing locks, other than the regularly issued school lock, on their lockers. 

Any person other than the building principal and USD 265 police officers, who wish to search a student’s locker shall report to the building principal before proceeding to the locker, and in no event shall such person be permitted to search the student’s locker without the principal’s consent unless such person has a valid search warrant authorizing him to make such search. 
If any law enforcement officer other than USD 265 police officers, desiring to search a student’s locker has a warrant for such search, the principal shall immediately take such person to the student’s locker and permit the officer to search the locker. The search shall be made in the presence of the principal. 

If a law enforcement officer, other than USD 265 police officers, desires to search the student’s locker without a warrant, the building principal shall ask what facts lead the officer to believe that evidence of a crime will be lost, destroyed or moved if the search and seizure did not take place immediately, before a warrant is obtained. If the building principal is not of the same opinion, he/she shall not allow the law enforcement officer to proceed on his/her own responsibility. The principal shall report the incident to the superintendent, and they may notify the officer’s superior of the incident. 

Prohibited items recovered from a student’s locker shall remain in the custody of either the building principal or the law enforcement officer. If such items are turned over to law enforcement officials the principal shall receive a receipt for the items. 

Upon reasonable suspicion and at the request of the administration, and/or USD 265 police officers, law enforcement officers or licensed private agencies may use trained dogs on school premises to identify student property which may contain illegal or illicit materials and to determine whether materials are present which may threaten the general health, welfare, and safety of students and/or district employees.

Search of the Person 
When it has been determined by the building principal that there is reason to believe that a student is in possession of an object which can jeopardize the health, welfare or safety of others, that student shall be ordered to report to the building principals’ office. This determination may be based on any information received by the building principal, designated representative or by a member of the faculty or staff. It also may be based on knowledge of the student’s disciplinary problems, the student’s association with known drug offenders, the student’s exhibiting objects associated with drug use or the student’s exhibiting such objects as bullets or a knife sheath which could be associated with dangerous weapons. 

Once in the principal’s office, the student shall be advised of the reason why he/she has been ordered to report to the principal’s office. The student shall then be requested to empty items such as, but not limited to, pockets, purses, shoulder bags and briefcases. Items which the building principal believes may be connected with illegal activity may remain in the custody of the building principal, unless such items are turned over to law enforcement officials; and if this is done, the principal shall receive a receipt for such item so delivered. 

If the student refuses to comply with this request, the building principal shall notify the student’s parents and request that they come to the school at once. The building principal shall advise the parents of the immediate situation. If the parents of the student are unable to persuade the student to comply, the parents and the student shall be advised that law enforcement officials will be notified, and the matter turned over to them. If the parents refuse to come to the school or are unable to be notified and the student continues to refuse to cooperate, the building principal shall notify law enforcement officials and inform them of the facts. Any further search of the student shall be at the discretion and under the control of the law enforcement officials.

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