General Information » Annual Notifications

Annual Notifications

All Hastings Area School System buildings are involved in an Asbestos Management Plan that calls for periodic surveillance of asbestos found in each building. Twice a year an inspection of each building is made to determine if any change in the condition of asbestos has taken place or if any action is needed to maintain a safe environment. Each school building has a specific plan for monitoring asbestos, and the plan is located in each school office. A complete School System plan, for the monitoring of asbestos, is on file at the Administration Office and the asbestos manager’s office, which is located at Hastings Middle School. Any operations and maintenance activity needed for asbestos situations will be performed by trained school personnel when school is not in session. When new or replacement construction is necessary, a non-asbestos material will be used. Any major asbestos removal project will be done by a professionally licensed, and Environmental Protection Agency approved contractor. Any response action to asbestos that is planned or completed in the schools, other than the routine operations and maintenance program, will be reported annually to the public.

  • Concealed Weapons Law
Generally, the concealed weapons law prohibits members of the public authorized to carry a concealed weapon on school property. The only exception to this general rule is for a parent or legal guardian “while in a vehicle on school property” to drop-off or pick-up the student a school. Law enforcement authorities will be notified, in the interests of safety, if any concealed weapons are brought onto school premises in a manner not strictly allowed by law.
  • Drug-Free Schools Policy
In accordance with Federal Law, The Board of Education prohibits the use, possession, concealment or distribution of drugs by students on school grounds, in school or school-approved vehicles, or at any school-related event. Drugs include any alcoholic beverage, anabolic steroids, dangerous controlled substance as defined by State statute, or substance that could be considered a “look-a-like” controlled substance. Compliance with this policy is mandatory for all students. Any student who violates this policy will be subject to disciplinary action, in accordance with due process and as specified in the student handbooks, up to and including expulsion from school. When required by State law, the District will also notify law enforcement officials. 
The District is concerned about any student who is the victim of alcohol or drug abuse and will facilitate the process by which s/he receives help through programs and services available in the community. Students and their parents should contact the school principal or counseling office whenever such help is needed.
  • Gun-Free Schools Act
As provided by law, students involved in violations involving firearms will be expelled from school. A “firearm” is defined as 1) any weapon which will or is designed to, or may readily be converted to, expel a projectile by the action of an explosive; 2) the frame or receiver of any such weapon; 3) any firearm muffler or silencer; or 4) any destructive device, including bombs, rockets, or any other explosive type devices.
  • 7434 - Use of Tobacco on School Premises
The Board of education believes that the right of persons to use tobacco must be balanced against the right of those who do not use tobacco to breathe air untainted by tobacco. In order to protect students and employees who choose not to use tobacco from an environment noxious to them and potentially damaging to their health. the Board prohibits the use of tobacco products on District premises (owned or leased), in District vehicles, at all school-sponsored events, and in all school buildings owned and/or operated by the District.
For purposes of this policy,
A. “tobacco product” means a preparation of tobacco to be inhaled, chewed, or placed in a person’s mouth.
B. “use of tobacco product” means any of the following:
1. the carrying by a person of a lighted cigar, cigarette, pipe, or other lit smoking devices
2. the inhaling or chewing of a tobacco product
3. the placing of a tobacco product within a person’s mouth
4. and/or the smoking of electronic, “vapor,” or other substitute forms of cigarettes, clove cigarettes or other lighted smoking devices for burning tobacco or any other substance.
Tobacco may not be advertised or promoted on school property or at school controlled events. Therefore, signs, clothing, bags, accessories, and other items promoting tobacco or containing tobacco branding are prohibited on school property and at school controlled events.
Tobacco companies/products may not sponsor any school activity or project. The superintendent shall designate the individuals and the methods to monitor compliance with this policy.
There are many factors taken into consideration when the decision to close schools must be made, because of inclement weather or other emergency situations. No matter what criteria are used to reach the decision and despite how carefully advance preparations are made an emergency closing may inconvenience some people. Whatever decision is reached, it will not be satisfactory to everyone, but the safety of students always is the primary concern in any emergency closing. Occasionally situations allow the decision to be made well in advance of the next school day, but usually, the decision is made during the early morning hours. Every effort is made to determine an emergency closing no later than 6:30 am, but there may be occasions when conditions don’t permit that. When possible, a “hard-surface roads only” transportation schedule or a delayed opening of the schools will be arranged instead of an emergency closing. As soon as an emergency closing, a delayed opening, or a change in the transportation arrangements is determined, the radio and television stations listed below are notified immediately: 
Ph. 269-948-4400    Website:
When a delayed opening is announced, students should not report to school until just prior to the delayed start of classes. When schools are closed because of weather or other conditions, evening classes and activities also may be canceled, and announcements about such cancellations will be made on radio station WBCH. No media announcements will be made when schools are open as usual.
Food Services Provide Nutritious Meals
Telephone: (269) 948-4417
Cost: Breakfast $1.70 • Lunch $2.90
Milk $0.50 • Fruit or Vegetable $0.50
Adult Lunch $4.00
Matt Moore, Food Service Director

Hastings Area Schools serves well over 225,000 Type A meals each year, plus a snack bar and a la carte items. We offer over four entrees per day in all schools. This provides a good healthy choice for each child. We also offer snack bars in the Middle and High schools for those students who want something extra for lunch. Not all snack bar items are sold in both schools. Breakfast is offered each morning! We offer cereal, juice, muffins, pop tarts, string cheese, fruit, graham crackers, and milk. If your child receives a free or reduced price meal, he/she will receive the same benefit for breakfast.

Debit card payment system: We use a computerized debit system for payment of all items. Parents can pay online with a debit or credit card or send in cash, check, or money order in advance for their student’s meals. Payments can be made for a week, two weeks, or even a month. The amount is put on a computerized system for your student’s account that corresponds to a picture identification card which is used for all purchases. Parents can request a list of items their child has selected for meals and snacks – it’s a great way to keep track of what your child is eating. This is a debit card system, not a credit card. Notes are sent home when the amount of money on the debit card is getting low. It is very important for the speed of the lunch line for students to use their ID cards. This also helps take care of any problems with accounts. The picture ID cards are used for all students, free, reduced cost meals, and full payment.

Applications for free or reduced price meals are available online and will be sent home on the first day of school. Please fill out online or return as soon as possible with complete information. The debit card system also allows for anonymity of students who receive free or reduced-price meals. Snack bar items are not eligible for free or reduced-price meals.

Please Note: All Hastings Area School buildings function under a closed campus policy. Students are expected to remain on school grounds during the lunch period. Lunchtime is an important time for children. They need nourishment to give them the zest for learning and fun that’s in store for them in the active school day! Hastings Area Schools intend to provide food served with care so that students can benefit physically and emotionally.
Hastings Area School System announces its policy for free and reduced-price school meals for children unable to pay the full price for meals served under the National School Lunch and School Breakfast Program. The following household size and income criteria will be used to determine eligibility:
  • Amount to add for each additional household member:
    Application forms can be completed online and submitted, or the application will be sent to all homes with a letter to parents/ guardians. To apply for free and reduced-price school meals online, go to our website, and click on “For Parents” and then “Food Service Student Account.” You will log in using your food service username and password and follow the instructions. If you don’t know your login, please contact the secretary at your school or Erin Blakely at the Administration Office at (269)948-4400. Additional copies of the application form are available in the office of each school. Households should answer all questions on the form.
    Non-Food Stamp Households: An application which does not contain all of the following information cannot be processed by the school: (1) the total income by source for each household member (such as wages, child support, etc.); (2) names of all household members; (3) social security number for the adult household member who signs the application; and (4) the signature for a household member. Food Stamp/ FIP/ PDPIR Households: If you currently receive food stamps, Family Independence Program (FIP), or Food Distribution Program on Indian Reservations (FDPIR) benefits for your child, you only have to list your child’s name and Food Stamp or FIP/FDPIR case number and sign the application. The information provided by the household is confidential and will be used only for the purpose of determining eligibility, verifying data, or qualifying children for other federal and state programs, as authorized by the United States Department of Agriculture. The school or
    other officials may verify applications at any time during the school year. Households may apply for benefits at any time during the school year. If a household is not currently eligible but has a decrease in household income, an increase in household size, or if a household member becomes unemployed, the household should fill out an application
    at that time.
    In most cases, Foster Children are eligible for these benefits regardless of the household’s income. If a household has foster children living with them, and they wish to apply for free or reduced-price meals for them, the household should contact the school for more information. Under the provisions of the policy Erin Blakely, 232 West Grand Street, Hastings, MI 49058, (269)948-4400 will review applications and determine eligibility. Parents or guardians dissatisfied with the ruling of the official may wish to discuss the decision with the determining official on an informal basis. The household also has the right to a fair hearing. This can be done by calling or writing Erin Blakely, 232 West Grand Street, Hastings, MI 49058, (269)948-4400.
    Each school and the Administration Office have a complete policy which may be reviewed by any interested party.
    Reapply: You may apply for meal benefits at any time during the school year. If you lose your job, if your income decreases, if your family size increases or if you begin receiving Food Stamps or FIP/FDPIR, fill out an application at that time. "In accordance with Federal law and U.S. Department of Agriculture policy, this institution is prohibited from discriminating on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, age, or disability, to file a complaint of discrimination, write USDA, Director, Office of Adjudication, 1400 Independence Avenue, SW, Washington, DC 20250-9410 or call toll free (866)632-9992 (voice). Individuals who are hearing impaired or have speech disabilities may contact USDA through the Federal Relay Service at (800)877-8339 or (800)877-8339 (Spanish). USDA is an equal opportunity provider and employer.”
    You will be informed of application approval or denial.
State law requires that each student entering kindergarten, or a new school district in grades 1 - 12, have a certificate of immunization at the time of registration. Before a child can be permitted to enter or attend school, parents or guardians must present documentation that their child has received all required doses of vaccines or that their child has received at least one dose of each of the required vaccines and is waiting to receive the subsequent doses at the appropriate time intervals.
Requirements for children four years through six years of age:
  • 4 doses of Diphtheria-Tetanus-Pertussis (DTP) vaccine and, if a dose was not received on or after the fourth birthday, a booster dose at school entry is required. Most children will have 5 doses.
  • 3 doses of any appropriate polio vaccine and if a dose, was not received on or after the fourth birthday, a booster dose at school entry is required. Most children will have 4 doses.
  • 2 doses of any appropriate live Measles-Mumps-Rubella (MMR) vaccine received after the first birthday, at least 28 days apart, and with one of the doses at or after 15 months of age or current laboratory evidence of immunity to measles, mumps, and rubella.
  • 3 doses are required, for the Hepatitis B vaccination.
  • 1 dose of Varicella (Chickenpox) is required or reliable history of the disease. Requirements for children seven through 18 years of age.
  • 4 doses of any appropriate diphtheria and tetanus vaccine are required. If a dose, was not given in the last 10 years, a booster dose of Td is required.
  • 3 doses of any appropriate polio vaccine are required.
  • 2 doses of the MMR vaccine are required. The first dose must be given on or after the first birthday. The second dose must be given at least 28 days from the first dose.
  • 3 doses of the Hepatitis B vaccination are required.
  • 1 dose of Varicella (Chickenpox) is required on or after the first birthday but prior to the 13th birthday OR two doses are required, administered at least 28 days apart if the child received the first dose on or after the 13th birthday. Children who have not received the required immunizations will be excluded from school until parents provide proof that all required immunizations have been given, or have a waiver on file. Parents will receive written notification of the necessary immunizations needed for their child before the child is excluded from school.
  • Meningococcal: 1 dose for children 11 years of age or older.
Public Act 198 of 1971, the Mandatory Special Education Act, establishes the right of persons with disabilities, from birth through the age of 25, to equal opportunity within the public schools.


It is important that help be obtained for those with disabilities at the earliest possible age. In the State of Michigan, this help is free and available through your public schools. A team of educational specialists evaluates the child to determine the type and degree of disability and the best program placement. This evaluation often includes medical specialists.


So, if you have, or know of, a pre-school child who may benefit from these services, call:
Beth Stevens, Assistant Superintendent of Achievement
Hastings Area School System
232 W. Grand Street, Hastings, MI 49058
Title IX 
Title IX of the Educational Amendments of 1972 of the United States Congress specifically states, “No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any educational program or activity receiving federal financial assistance...” It is the policy of the Hastings Area School System to fully comply with Title IX. Therefore, the Board of Education, the administration, and the staff of the Hastings Area School System shall continue to take whatever steps may be necessary to prevent sexual discrimination in all educational programs and curricular, co-curricular, and extra-curricular activities.
The School System’s policy specifies that all students have equal opportunities to participate in and benefit from school activities and services. It is a violation of that policy for the administration, teachers, or other staff members to discriminate against students on the basis of sex in disciplinary actions, entitlement and provision of services, selection of courses or programs, counseling services, physical education and athletics, and on the basis of marital or parental status. Likewise, no assistance, such as administrative or staff cooperation, faculty sponsorship, or use of school facilities on school time, shall be provided to any non-school organization or individual when it has been determined that such organization or individual discriminates on the basis of sex. For further information contact either of the district's compliance officer: 
Beth Stevens, Assistant Superintendent of Student Achievement
232 West Grand St., Hastings, MI 49058
Telephone: (269) 948-4400
Fax: (269) 948-4425
Non-Discrimination and Equal Employment Opportunity Hastings Area Schools does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, disability, age, religion, height, weight, marital or family status, military status, ancestry, genetic information or any other legally protected category, (collectively, "Protected Classes"), in its programs and activities, including employment opportunities.
The Hastings Area Schools has a pest management program in the district. As a result, pesticides are occasionally applied in district buildings or on district grounds. Some things you should know about the Hastings Area Schools’ program are:
1) Pesticides are used only as necessary in our buildings to reduce and control the occurrence of insects in the schools and to ensure that buildings meet health code standards.
2) Only State of Michigan licensed pesticide applicators are used.
3) Pesticides are used only in those areas of the buildings in which infestations are likely to occur, such as, food service areas. Pesticides are NOT routinely used throughout the buildings.
4) The district has informed our licensed pesticide applicator that pesticides may NEVER be used in or near district facilities during normal school hours. Regular pesticide applications are normally scheduled once a month and after school has been dismissed, or during other non-school days or hours. According to the Michigan Department of Agriculture rules, rooms sprayed with pesticides must remain unoccupied for at least four hours after application.
5) If due to an emergency situation, a pesticide must be sprayed in or about your child’s school day, you may request to be notified after the spraying has occurred. Remember, such spraying will only take place after school hours or on a day when school is not in session.
If you wish to be notified of such situations, please completed the following form and mail it to:
Matt Goebel, Superintendent
Hastings Area School System
232 West Grand Street, Hastings, MI 49058

Parent/Guardian/Staff Member Name:_______________________________________________________
Student’s Name: _______________________________________________________________________
Student’s/Staff Member’s School: __________________________________________________________
Street Address _________________________________________________________________________
City/State/Zip Code ___________________________________________ Telephone _________________
I wish to be notified of any emergency spraying of pesticide in the building of the above school. I understand that emergency spraying will only take place after school hours or on a day when school is not in session.
Parent/Staff Member signature:_____________________________________________________
Date: _________________
Child Protection Act 
Under the Michigan Child Protection Act, school employees are required to report suspected child abuse to the Family Independence Agency. Child abuse is defined in the Child Protection Act as “harm or threatened harm to a child’s health or welfare by a parent, legal guardian, or any other person responsible for the child’s health or welfare, or by a teacher or teacher’s aide, which occurs through non-accidental physical or mental injury, sexual abuse, sexual exploitation, or maltreatment.”
Hastings Area Schools Publicity Information
This announcement will serve to notify parents and guardians that throughout the school year student activities, programs, and sports events are videotaped for broadcast on the local cable access channel (channel 2) and for other public and school viewing, and that students may be photographed for the newspapers and for display on the Internet. Parents/guardians who do not wish their child/children to be videotaped or photographed throughout the school year are asked to send written notification to the office at the school the child/children attend.
Locker Search Policy
It is the policy of the Hastings Area School System Board of Education that all lockers assigned to its students are the property of the School System. At no time does the School System relinquish its exclusive control, of its lockers. The school principal, or his/her designee, shall have custody of all combinations to all lockers or locks. Students are prohibited from placing locks on any locker without the advance approval of the school principal, or his/her designee.
Legitimate Use of School Lockers: The School System assigns lockers to its students for the students’ convenience and temporary use. Students are to use lockers exclusively to store school-related materials and authorized personal items such as outer garments, footwear, grooming aids, or lunches. Students shall not use the lockers for any other purpose, unless specifically authorized by school policy or the school principal, or his/her designee, in advance of students bringing items to be kept in their lockers to school. Students are solely responsible for the contents of their lockers and should not share their lockers with other students, nor divulge locker combinations to other students unless authorized by the school principal, or his/her designee.
Search of Locker Contents: Random searches of school lockers and their contents have a positive impact on deterring violations of school rules and regulations, ensure proper maintenance of school property, and provide greater safety and security for students and personnel. Accordingly, the Board of Education authorizes the school principal, or his/her designee, to search lockers and locker contents at any time, without notice, and without parental/guardianship or student consent.
The school principal, or his/her designee, shall not be obligated to but may request the assistance of a law enforcement officer in conducting a locker search. The school principal, or his/her designee, shall supervise the search. In the course of a locker search, the school principal, or his/her designee, shall respect the privacy rights of the student regarding any items discovered, that are not illegal or against school policy and rules.
Seizure: When conducting locker searches, the school principal, or his/her designee, may seize any illegal or unauthorized items, items in violation of school policy or rules, or any other items reasonably determined by the school principal, or his/her designee, to be a potential threat to the safety or security of others. Such items include, but are not limited to the following: firearms, explosives, dangerous weapons, flammable material, illegal controlled substances or controlled substance analogues or other intoxicants, contraband, poisons, and stolen property. Law enforcement officials shall be notified immediately upon seizure of such dangerous items, or seizure of items that schools are required to report to law enforcement agencies under the Statewide School Safety Information Policy.
Any items seized by the school principal, or his/her designee, shall be removed from the locker and held by school officials for evidence in disciplinary proceedings and/or turned over to law enforcement officials. The parent/guardian of a minor student, or a student 18 years of age or older, shall be notified by the school principal, or his/her designee, of items removed from the locker.
Notice For Directory Information
The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), a Federal law, requires that Hastings Area School System, with certain exceptions, obtain your written consent prior to the disclosure of personally identifiable information from your child's education records. However, Hastings Area School System may disclose appropriately designated "directory information" without written consent, unless you have advised the District to the contrary in accordance with District procedures. The primary purpose of directory information is to allow the Hastings Area School System to include this type of information from your child's education records in certain school publications.
Examples include: 
    • A playbill, showing your student's role in a drama production;
    • The annual yearbook;
    • Honor roll or other recognition lists;
    • Graduation programs; and
    • Sports activity sheets, such as for wrestling, showing weight and height of team members.
Directory information, which is information that is generally not considered harmful or an invasion of privacy if released, can also be disclosed to outside organizations without a parent's prior written consent. Outside organizations include, but are not limited to, companies that manufacture class rings or publish yearbooks. In addition, two federal laws require local educational agencies (LEAs) receiving assistance under the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 (ESEA) to provide military recruiters, upon request, with three directory information categories - names, addresses and telephone listings - unless parents have advised the LEA that they do not want their student's information disclosed without their prior written consent. If you do not want Hastings Area School System to disclose directory information from your child's education records without your prior written consent, you must notify the District in writing by October 1st of the current school year.
Hastings Area School System has designated the following information as directory information:
    • Student's name
    • Participation in officially recognized activities and sports
    • Address
    • Telephone listing
    • Weight and height of members of athletic teams
    • Electronic mail address
    • Photograph
    • Degrees, honors, and awards received
    • Date and place of birth
    • Major field of study
    • Dates of attendance
    • Grade level
    • The most recent educational agency or institution attended
Notification of Rights Under the Protection of Pupil Rights Amendment (PPRA)
PPRA affords parents certain rights regarding our conduct of surveys, collection, and use of information for marketing purposes, and certain physical exams.
These include the right to:
Consent before, students are required to submit to a survey that concerns one or more of the following protected areas ("protected information survey") if the survey is funded in whole or in part by a program of the U.S. Department of Education (ED):
  1. Political affiliations or beliefs of the student or student's parent
  2. Mental or psychological problems of the student or student's family
  3. Sex behavior or attitudes
  4. Illegal, anti-social, self-incriminating, or demeaning behavior
  5. Critical appraisals of others with whom respondents have close family relationships
  6. Legally recognized privileged relationships, such as with lawyers, doctors, or ministers
  7. Religious practices, affiliations, or beliefs of the student or parents
  8. Income, other than as required by law to determine program eligibility.
Receive notice and an opportunity to opt a student out of:
  1. Any other protected information survey, regardless of funding
  2. Any non-emergency, invasive physical exam or screening required as a condition of attendance, administered by the school or its agent, and not necessary to protect the immediate health and safety of a student, except for hearing, vision, or scoliosis screenings, or any physical exam or screening permitted or required under State law
  3. Activities involving collection, disclosure, or use of personal information obtained from students for marketing or to sell or otherwise distribute the information to others.
Inspect, upon request and before administration or use:
  1. Protected information surveys of students
  2. Instruments used to collect personal information from students for any of the above marketing, sales, or other distribution purposes
  3. Instructional material used as part of the educational curriculum.
These rights transfer from the parents to a student who is 18 years old or an emancipated minor under State law.
Hastings Area School System is developing and adopting policies, in consultation with parents, regarding these rights, as well as arrangements to protect student privacy in the administration of protected information surveys and the collection, disclosure, or use of personal information for marketing, sales, or other distribution purposes. Hastings Area School System will directly notify parents of these policies at least annually at the start of each school year and after any substantive changes. Hastings Area School System will also directly notify, such as through U.S. Mail or email, parents of students who are scheduled to participate in the specific activities or surveys noted below and will provide an opportunity for the parent to opt his or her child out of participation of the specific activity or survey. Hastings Area School System will make this notification to parents at the beginning of the school year if the District has identified the specific or approximate dates of the activities or surveys at that time. For surveys and activities scheduled after the school year starts, parents will be provided reasonable notification of the planned activities and surveys listed below and be provided an opportunity to opt their child out of such activities and surveys. Parents will also be provided an opportunity to review any pertinent surveys.
Following is a list of the specific activities and surveys covered under this requirement:
    • Collection, disclosure, or use of personal information for marketing, sales or other distribution.
    • Administration of any protected information survey not funded in whole or in part by ED.
    • Any non-emergency, invasive physical examination or screening as described above.

Parents who believe their rights have been violated may file a complaint with:
Family Policy Compliance Office
U.S. Department of Education
400 Maryland Avenue, S.W.
Washington, D.C. 20202-5901

Parent's Rights to Student Records
The Family Educational and Privacy Act (FERPA) afford parents and students over 18 years of age (“eligible students”) certain rights with respect to the student’s education records.
These rights are:
  1. The right to inspect and review the student’s education records within 45 days of the day the Hastings Area School System receives a request for access. Parents or eligible students should submit to the building principal a written request that identifies the record(s) they wish to inspect. The School official will make arrangements for access and notify the parent or eligible student of the time and place where the records may be inspected.
  2. The right to request the amendment of the student’s education records that the parent or eligible student believes are inaccurate, misleading, or otherwise in violation of the student’s privacy rights under FERPA. Parents or eligible students may ask the Hastings Area School System to amend a record that they believe is inaccurate. They should write to the building principal, clearly identify the part of the record they want to be changed. If the School decides not to amend the record as requested by the parent or eligible student, the School will notify the parent or eligible student of the decision and advise them of their right to a hearing regarding the request for amendment. Additional information regarding the hearing procedures will be provided to the parent or eligible student when notified of the right to a hearing.
  3. The right to consent to disclosures of personally identifiable information contained in the student’s education records, except to the extent that FERPA authorizes disclosure without consent. One exception, which permits disclosure without consent, is disclosure to school officials with legitimate educational interests. A school official is a person employed by the School as an administrator, supervisor, instructor, or support staff member (including health or medical staff and law enforcement unit personnel); a person serving on the School Board; a person or company with whom the School has contracted to perform a service instead of using its own employees or officials (such as an attorney, auditor, medical consultant, or therapist); or a parent or student serving on an official committee, such as a disciplinary or grievance committee, or assisting another school official in performing his or her tasks. A school official has a legitimate educational interest if the official needs to review an education record in order to fulfill his or her professional responsibility. Upon request, Hastings Area School System discloses education records without consent to officials of another school district in which a student seeks or intends to enroll. Hastings Area School System will forward the records as requested.
  4. The right to file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education concerning alleged failures by the Hastings Area School System to comply with the requirements of FERPA.
The name and address of the Office that administers FERPA are: 
Family Policy Compliance Office
U.S. Department of Education
400 Maryland Avenue, SW
Washington, DC 20202-4605
Student Records
In order to provide appropriate educational services and programming, the Board of Education must collect, retain, and use information about individual students. Simultaneously, the Board recognizes the need to safeguard student's privacy and restrict access to student's personally identifiable information. 
If the parent or legal guardian of a student provides the District with notice that s/he/they have received a participation card issued by the attorney general under the address confidentiality program act, the District shall not disclose the confidential address of the student, regardless of any other provision of this policy. The Superintendent, or his or her designee, shall develop a process to ensure that a student's participation in the address confidentiality program act is appropriately noted to avoid disclosure of this information to any person or entity. 
Student "personally identifiable information" ("PII") includes, but is not limited to: the student's name; the name of the student's parents or other family members; the address of the student's or student's family; a personal identifier, such as the student's social security number, student number, or biometric record; other indirect identifiers, such as the student's date of birth, place of birth, and mother's maiden name; other information that, alone or in combination, is linked or linkable to a specific student that would allow a reasonable person in the school community, who does not have the personal knowledge of the relevant circumstances, to identify the student with reasonable certainty; or information requested by a person who the District reasonably believes knows the identity of the student to whom the education record relates. 
The Board of Education is responsible for maintaining records for all students attending schools in this District. Only records mandated by the State or Federal government and/or necessary and relevant to the function of the School District or specifically permitted by this Board will be compiled by Board employees. The Board hereby authorizes collection of the following students records, in addition to the membership record required by law: 
  1. observations and ratings of individual students by professional staff members acting within their sphere of competency 
  2. samples of student work
  3. information obtained from professionally acceptable standard instruments of measurement 
  4. authenticated information provided by a parent or eligible student concerning achievements and other school activities which the parent or student wants to make a part of the record 
  5. verified reports of serious or recurrent behavior patterns
  6. rank in class and academic honors earned
  7. psychological tests
  8. attendance records
  9. health records
  10. custodial arrangements 
In all cases, permitted, narrative information in student records shall be objectively based on the personal observation or knowledge of the originator. 
Student records shall be available only to students and their parents, eligible students, and designated school officials who have a legitimate educational interest in the information, or to other individuals or organizations as permitted by law. The term "parents" includes legal guardians or other persons standing in loco parentis (such as a grandparent or stepparent with whom the child lives, or a person who is legally responsible for the welfare of the child.) The term "eligible student" refers to a student who is eighteen (18) years of age or older or a student of any age who is enrolled in a postsecondary institution. 
In situations in which a student has both a custodial and a noncustodial parent, both shall have access to the student's educational records unless stipulated otherwise by court order. In the case of eligible students, parents will be allowed access to the records without the student's consent, provided the student is considered a dependent under section 152 of the Internal Revenue Code. 
A school official is a person employed by the Board as an administrator, supervisor, teacher/instructor (including substitutes), or support staff member (including health or medical staff and law enforcement unit personnel); and a person serving on the Board. The Board further designates the following individuals and entities as "school officials" for the purpose of FERPA:
  1. persons or companies with whom the Board has contracted to perform a specific task (such as an attorney, auditor, insurance representative, or medical consultant); 
  2. contractors, consultants, volunteers or other parties to whom the Board has outsourced a service or function otherwise performed by the Board employees (e.g. a therapist, authorized information technology (IT) staff, and approved online educational service providers). 
The above-identified outside parties must (a) perform institutional services or functions for which the Board would otherwise use its employees, (b) be under the direct control of the Board with respect to the use and maintenance of education records, and (c) be subject to the requirements of the 34 C.F.R. 99.33(a) governing the use and re-disclosure of PII from education records. 
Finally, a parent or student serving on an official committee, such as a disciplinary or grievance committee, or assisting other school official in performing his/her tasks (including volunteers) is also considered a "school official" for the purposes of FERPA provided s/he meets the above-referenced criteria applicable to other outside parties. 
"Legitimate educational interest" shall be defined as a "direct or delegated responsibility for helping the student achieve one (1) or more of the educational goals of the District" or if the record is necessary in order for the school official to perform an administrative, supervisory or instructional task or to perform a service or benefit for the student or the student's family. The Board directs that reasonable and appropriate methods (including but not limited to physical and/or technological access controls) are utilized to control access to student records and to make certain that school officials obtain access to only those education records in which they have legitimate educational interest. 
The Board authorizes the administration to:
  1. forward student records, including any suspension or expulsion action against the student, on request to a school or school district in which a student of this Districts seeks or intends to enroll upon condition that the student's parents be notified of the transfer, receive a copy of the record if desired, and have the opportunity for a hearing to challenge the content of the record;
  2. forward student records, including disciplinary records with respect to suspensions and expulsions, upon request to a public school or school district in which a student in foster care is enrolled. Such records shall be transferred within one (1) school day of the enrolling school's request;
  3. provide "personally-identifiable" information to appropriate parties, including parents of an eligible student, whose knowledge of the information is necessary to protect the health or safety of the student or other individuals, if there is an articulable and significant threat to the health or safety of a student or other individuals, considering the totality of the circumstances;
  4. report a crime committed by a child with or without a disability to appropriate authorities and, with respect to reporting a crime committed by a student with a disability, to transmit copies of the student's special education records and disciplinary records including any supervision and expulsion action against the student to the authorities and school officials for their consideration;
  5. release de-identified records and information in accordance with Federal regulations;
  6. disclose personally identifiable information from education records, without consent, to organizations conducting studies "for, or on behalf of" the District for purposes of developing, validating, or administering predictive tests, administering student aid programs, or improving instruction; 
  7. disclose personally identifiable information from education records without consent, to authorized representatives of the Comptroller General, the Attorney General, and the Secretary of Education, as well as State and local educational authorities;
  8. request each person or party requesting access to a student's record to abide by the Federal regulations concerning the disclosure of information 
The Board will comply with a legitimate request for access to a student's records within a reasonable period of time but not more than forty-five (45) days after receiving the request or within such shorter period as may be applicable to students with disabilities. Upon the request of the viewer, a record shall be reproduced, unless said record is copyrighted, and the viewer may be charged a fee equivalent to the cost of handling and reproduction. Based upon reasonable requests, viewers of educational records will receive explantation and interpretation of the records. 
The Board shall maintain a record of those persons to whom information about a student has been disclosed. Such disclosure records will indicate the student, person viewing the record, information disclosed, date of disclosure, and date parental/eligible student consent was obtained (if required). 
Upon written request by a student's parent or legal guardian, the District shall disclose the parent or legal guardian any personally identifiable information concerning the student that is collected or created by the District as part of the student's education records. 
If the District provides any personally identifiable information concerning the student that is collected or created by the District as part of the student's education records to any person, agency, or organization, then the District shall disclose to the student's parent or legal guardian upon his/her written request: 
  1. the specific information that was disclosed;
  2. the name and contact information of each person, agency, or organization to which the information has been disclosed;
  3. the legitimate reason that the person, agency, or organization had in obtaining the information. 
This information shall be provided without charge within thirty (30) days after the District receives the written request and without charge to the parent or legal guardian. 
The District is not required to disclose the parent or legal guardian, even upon written request, any personally identifiable information concerning the student that is collected or created by the District as part of the student's education records and is provided to any person, agency, or organization in any of the following situations: 
  1. provision of such information to the Michigan Department of Education or CEPI
  2. provision of such information to the student's parent or legal guardian
  3. provision of such information to its authorizing body or to an educational management organization with which it has a management agreement 
  4. provision of such information to or from its intermediate school district or to another intermediate school district providing services to the District or its students pursuant to a written agreement 
  5. provision of such information to a person, agency, or organization with written consent from the student's parent or legal guardian, or if the student is at least eighteen (18), the student 
  6. provision of such information to a person, agency, or organization seeking or receiving records in accordance with an order, subpoena, or ex parte order issued by a court of competent jurisdiction 
  7. provision of such information as necessary for standardized testing that measures the student's academic progress and achievement 
  8. provision of such information that is covered by the opt-out form described above, unless the student's parent or legal guardian or, if the student is at least eighteen (18) or is an emancipated minor, the student has signed and submitted the opt-out form referenced below
Only "directory information" regarding a student shall be released to any person or party, other than the student or his/her parent, without the written consent of the parent; or if the student is an eligible student, the written consent of the student, except those persons or parties stipulated by the Board policy and administrative guidelines and/or those specified in the law. 
The Board shall exempt from disclosure directory information, as requested for the purpose of surveys, marketing, or solicitation, unless the Board determines that the use is consistent with the educational mission of the Board and beneficial to the affected students. The Board may take steps to ensure that directory information disclosed shall not be used, rented, or sold for the purpose of surveys, marketing, or solicitations. Before disclosing the directory information, the Board may require the requester to execute an affidavit stating that directory information provided shall not be used, rented, or sold for the purpose of surveys, marketing, or solicitation. 
Each year the Superintendent shall provide public note to students and their parents of the District's intent to make available, upon request, certain information known as "directory information". The Board designates as student "directory information":
  1. a student's name;
  2. address (except for students participating in the address confidentiality program act);
  3. telephone number;
  4. date and place of birth;
  5. major field of study;
  6. participation in officially recognized activities and sports;
  7. height and weight, if member of an athletic team;
  8. height if member of an athletic team;
  9. weight, if member of an athletic team which requires disclosure to participate;
  10. dates of attendance;
  11. date of graduation;
  12. awards received;
  13. honor rolls;
  14. scholarships;
  15. telephone numbers for inclusion in school or PTO directories;
  16. school photographs or videos of students participating in school activities, events, or programs;
  17. kindergarten cohort identifier 
The Board designates school-assigned e-mail accounts as "directory information" for the limited purpose of facilitating students' registration for access to various online educational services, including mobile applications/apps that will be utilized by the student for educational purposes and for inclusion with internal e-mail address books. School-assigned e-mail accounts shall not be released as directory information beyond this/these limited purpose(s) and to any person or entity but the specific online educational service provider and internal users of the District's Education Technology. 
The Superintendent will also develop a list of uses for which the District commonly would disclose a student's directory information and develop an opt-out form that lists all of the uses or instances that allows a parent or legal guardian to elect not to have his/ or her child's directory information disclosed for one (1) or more of these uses. 
Each student's parent or legal guardian will be provided with the opt-out form within the first thirty (30) days of the school year. The form shall also be provided to a parent or legal guardian at other times upon request. 
If an opt-out form is signed and submitted to the District by a student's parent or legal guardian, the District shall not include the student's directory information in any of the uses that have been opted out of in the opt-out form. A student who is at least age eighteen (18) or is an emancipated minor may act on his/her own behalf with respect to the opt-out form. 
Armed Forces Recruiting
The Board shall provide United States Armed Forces recruiters with at least the same access to the high school campus and to student directory information (names, addresses, District-assigned email addresses (if available) (except for students participating in the address confidentiality program act,) and telephone listings of secondary students) as is provided to other entities offering educational or employment opportunities to those students. "Armed forces of the United States" means the armed forces of the United States and their reserve components and the United States Coast Guard. 
If a student or the parent or legal guardian of a student submits a signed, written request to the Board that indicates the student or the parent or legal guardian does not want the student's directory information to be accessible to official recruiting representatives, then the officials of the school shall not allow that access to the student's directory information. The Board shall ensure that students and parents and guardians are notified of the provisions of the opportunity to deny release of directory information. 
Public notice shall be given regarding the right to refuse disclosure of any or all "directory information" including to the armed forces of the United States and the service academies of the armed forces of the United States. 
A fee, not to exceed the actual costs incurred by the high school, for copying and mailing student directory information under this section, may be charged an official recruiting representative. 
Directory information received under armed services authorization request shall be used only to provide information to students concerning educational and career opportunities available in the armed forces of the United States or the service academies of the United States or the service academies of the armed forces of the United States. 
Annually the Board will notify male students age eighteen (18) or older that they are required to register for the selective service. 
Requests to the District records officer shall be presented on a standardized form developed by the armed forces of the United States requesting access to a high school campus and a time for the access. Requests should bear the signature of the ranking recruiting officer of the armed service making the request. Whenever consent of the parent(s)/eligible student is required for the inspection and/or release of a student's education records or for the release of "directory information", either parent may provide such consent unless stipulated otherwise by court order. If the student is under the guardianship of an institution, the Superintendent shall appoint a person who has no conflicting interest to provide such written consent. 
The Board may disclose "directory information" on former students without student or parental consent, unless the parent or eligible student previously submitted a request that such information shall not be disclosed without their prior written consent. 
The Board shall not sell or otherwise provide to a for-profit business entity any personally identifiable information that is part of a student's education records. This does not apply to any of the following situations:
  1. providing the information as necessary for standardized testing that measures the student's academic progress and achievement 
  2. providing the information as necessary to a person that is providing educational or educational support services to the student under a contract with the District 
The Board may establish online access for the parents or the eligible student of the student's confidential academic and attendance record. To authorize such access, the parents or the eligible student must a sign a release (see Form 8330 F10). This release shall remind the parents or eligible student that the account and confidential information about the student is only as secure as they keep their account information. Neither the District nor its employees will be held responsible for any breach of this policy by the parent/eligible student or any unauthorized party.
The Superintendent shall prepare administrative guidelines to ensure that students and parents are adequately informed each year regarding rights to:
  1. inspect and review the student's education records;
  2. request amendments if the record is inaccurate, misleading, or otherwise in violation of the student's rights;
  3. consent to disclosures of personally-identifiable information contained in the student's education records, except to unauthorized disclosures allowed by the law;
  4. challenge the Board's noncompliance with a parent's request to amend the records through a hearing;
  5. file a complaint with the United States Department of Education;
  6. obtain a copy of the Board's policy and administrative guidelines on student records
The Superintendent shall also develop procedural guidelines for:
  1. the proper storage and retention of records including a list of the type and location of records;
  2. informing Board employees of the Federal and State laws concerning student records 
The Board authorizes the use of the microfilm process or electromagnetic processes of reproduction of the recording, filing, maintaining, and preserving of records. No liability shall attach to any member, officer, or employee of the District specifically as a consequence of permitting access or furnishing student records in accordance with this policy and regulations. 
Any entity receiving personally identifiable information pursuant to a study, audit, evaluation or enforcement/compliance activity must comply with all FERPA regulations. Further, such an entity must enter into a written contract with the Board of Education delineating in safeguarding the disclosed information. Specifically, the entity must demonstrate the existence of a sound data security plan or data stewardship program, and must also provide assurances that the personally identifiable information will not be redisclosed without proper authorization from the Board. Further, the entity conducting the student, audit, evaluation, or enforcement/compliance activity is required to destroy the disclosed information once it is no longer needed or when the timeframe for the activity has ended, as specified in its written agreement with the Board of Education. See Form 8330 F14 and Form 8330 F16 for additional contract requirements. 
The Hastings Area School System does not pay for medical expenses incurred by students, but all students have the opportunity to purchase school-time accident insurance through an independent company. The insurance reimburses payment for those accidents which require medical care according to the provisions of the policy. Information about the school insurance will be handed out on the first day of school and is available online @
Sexual harassment of students, employees, or volunteers by other students, employees, or volunteers of the Hastings Area School System is unlawful under both Michigan and federal law and is contrary to the commitment of the School System to provide a stable learning and work environment. The Hastings Area Schools will not tolerate any sexual harassment of students, employees, or volunteers.
Sexual harassment includes making unwelcomed sexual advances, engaging in improper physical contact, making inappropriate sexual comments, or otherwise creating an intimidating, hostile, or offensive learning or work environment. All students, employees, and volunteers are expected to conduct themselves with respect for the dignity of others. If a student has concerns about the nature of any conduct or physical contact by an adult or volunteer in the School System, by a fellow student, or by a member of the public, the student immediately should report this concern to the principal of his/her school.
All such reports will be investigated immediately by the School System, and all such reports will be handled discreetly to maintain confidentiality in order to avoid embarrassment and to protect the student making the report. However, it should be understood that the School System is required by law to report child abuse to the Family Independence Agency.
Copies of the School System’s policy and complaint procedure on sexual harassment are available in all school offices, online at, and at the Administration Office, 232 West Grand Street, Hastings, Michigan.
Central Elementary School, Northeastern Elementary School, Southeastern Elementary School, Star Elementary School, and the Hastings Middle School receive federal funds for Title I programs that are part of the, No Child Left Behind Act of 2001. Throughout the school year, we will continue to provide you with important information regarding this law and your child’s education.  You have the right to request information regarding the professional qualifications of your child’s classroom
If you request this information, the district or school will provide you with the following as soon as
A. If the teacher has met state licensing requirements for the grade level and subjects in which the teacher is providing instruction;
B. If the teacher is teaching under an emergency status for which state licensing requirements have been waived;
C. The type of college degree major of the teacher and the field of discipline for any graduate degree or certificate; and
D. If your child is receiving Title I services from paraprofessionals and, if so, his/her qualifications.
If you would like to request this information please contact:
Assistant Superintendent, Beth Stevens
232 West Grand Street, Hastings, MI 49058