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SFCMS Student Handbook

Seventy-First Classical Middle School School Crest (black print on white background)


Welcome to Seventy-First Classical Middle School. Our students and staff have established standards of excellence in academic and co-curricular accomplishments. We have high expectations of our students, and we challenge you to set high standards for yourself.

Your success depends on the choices you make and is directly related to your efforts. Invest your time and energy wisely each day, and you will be successful in all your endeavors.

The ultimate purpose of education is to help each student become an effective, responsible, and productive citizen in our democratic society. Education is a team responsibility, which begins with your family, extends to the school, and encompasses the entire community. The Seventy-First Classical Handbook is prepared to help you develop and accept the responsibilities and obligations of good citizenship in our school and community. Each student and parent is responsible for knowing and understanding this handbook, as well as the Cumberland County Schools’ Code of Conduct.

Set goals and challenge yourself to excel in academics, attendance, behavior, and co-curricular activities. You may exceed these goals! Have a great year.

Our school is committed to providing a safe and caring environment where students will learn, appreciate diversity, display good character, and become responsible citizens.

To fulfill our mission, the faculty and staff of Seventy-First Classical Middle School have set the following beliefs:

  • Student learning is the first priority of our school.
  • Each student is an important individual with unique intellectual, emotional, social and physical needs.
  • A safe and orderly environment promotes student learning.
  • Character education concepts, a prescribed dress code, and a student code of conduct provide an environment of high expectations within our school.
  • Teachers, staff, parents, students and community members share in the responsibility of providing a cohesive learning environment.
  • High expectations and clear goals for student success should guide the curriculum and the development of instructional strategies.
  • Curriculum and instructional practices should incorporate a variety of activities and strategies to accommodate differences in learning styles.
  • Assessments of student learning should provide a variety of opportunities for students to demonstrate achievement and mastery.
  • The commitment to continuous improvement is the focus, which enables students to become global citizens, problem solvers, creative thinkers and independent learners.

State law and Board policy requires students to attend school daily and be present for all classes. Regular and punctual attendance is critical to student success in school. In order to be counted present, all students must be checked in before 11:00 a.m. or checked out after 11:00 a.m.

In order to be considered in attendance, a student must be present in the school for the school day, or at a place other than the school with the approval of the appropriate school official for the purpose of attending a school activity, which has been officially authorized under the policies of the Board of Education. Such activities may include: field trips, student conventions, musical festivals, or any similarly approved activity. The Cumberland County Board of Education authorizes school principals to record as present those pupils attending school-related activities as designated by the Superintendent, providing the pupil’s attendance at a school-related activity has prior approval of the principal or the appropriate school official.

A student shall be present at least one-half of the school day in order to be counted present for the whole day.

Students are expected to be in school except for lawful reasons as explained below:

  • Student illness or injury
  • Quarantine
  • Death in the immediate family
  • Medical or dental appointments of students
  • Court or administrative proceedings if student is a party to the action or under subpoena as a witness
  • Religious observances
  • Educational opportunity (Prior approval by the principal is required; Requests must be in writing)

Please check for special restrictions under each lawful reason. Documentation will be required for any of the foregoing to be considered lawful. Acceptable documentation can be a doctor’s note with the doctor’s signature, date, and time of appointment, subpoena, or parent/guardian’s note. No more than 10 parent excuse notes will be allowed as “excused”. Documentation should be given to the homeroom teacher the day the student returns to school after an absence. If the note is not received explaining the absence within 5 days after the student returns to school, the absence will be coded as an “unlawful” absence. All other absences not defined above as “lawful” are coded unlawful.

Students are responsible for securing make-up assignments for absences on the day they return.  All work missed due to a lawful absence must be made up within three school days upon the student’s return to school.  Assignments that are not made up will be reflected in the student’s grade.  A student who is present when a test is announced is expected to take the test as scheduled or upon returning to school.

Students will be responsible for submitting all assignments on the due date determined by the teacher.  Failure to do so will result in a reduction of one letter grade from the original grade for each day late. 6th graders have 3 additional days, 7th graders 2 and 8th graders 1 day, all for a reduction in grade.  Work submitted after the grace period may receive no credit. Exceptions will be addressed on an individual basis.

Promptness to school and class is very important!  Students are to be in their seats and ready to work at the beginning bell for class.  Students who arrive at school after the 7:30 a.m. tardy bell must report to the school office with a parent/guardian to sign in. No more than 10 parent excused sign-in’s for tardies will be allowed. Tardies to all other classes will be documented by the classroom teacher and parents will be notified. Upon the third unexcused tardy, students will be assigned after-school detention.

If a student needs to leave during the school day, a parent/guardian must sign him/her out in the main office.  In order to maximize instructional time, students will be called from class when the parent arrives in our office, except in an emergency.  Students will not be dismissed from any class after 2:15 p.m.

In the event of inclement weather, school may be closed or may require a delayed starting time or an early dismissal.  Families will be notified via a call system as well as local radio and TV announcements.

It is imperative that the school office be notified immediately of a change of address, home or office telephone number, or of a change in emergency information during the academic school year.

Parents/guardians of students transferring from Seventy-First Classical Middle School should contact the school office two days prior to withdrawing to initiate the withdrawal process.  Students are responsible for returning textbooks and library books to the appropriate teachers.  Outstanding fees or fines must be paid prior to student’s transfer. Permission to transfer within CCS must be granted by the Student Assignment office.

All textbooks are loaned to students for their use during the school year. Students are held responsible for all textbooks issued to them. These textbooks are to be kept clean and handled carefully. Satisfactory settlement will be required for lost or damaged books.

The media center is open to students from 7:15 a.m. to 2:55 p.m. daily. Students can either visit with their class or individually between classes and during a class with permission from their teacher.

  • Each student can checkout two books at one time.
  • Books are checked out for two school weeks, and can be renewed once.
  • A fee of 5 cents per school day is charged for any overdue books.
  • Students with an overdue book must turn it in or renew it before checking out other materials.
  • All overdue fines and lost book fees must be paid by the end of the school year in order for students to participate in end-of-year celebrations, field days, etc.
  • Destiny, the online library catalog, can be accessed at
  • NCWiseOwl is a group of subscription online databases for student research and includes full-text journal articles, newspaper articles, and reference materials. Access for free at

Public displays of affection are inappropriate behaviors at school and will be treated as infractions.

Each student will be given a planner to promote organization and communication with parents.  Students should bring their planners to each class daily. Assignments should be recorded in the planner.  Students must have their planner which also serves as a hall pass if the student needs to leave class for any reason.

High standards of dress promote good citizenship and a positive and safe learning environment. Students are expected to adhere to standards of dress and grooming. Teachers and administrators have discretion in making judgments relating to the appropriateness of dress, to include jewelry and hair.
1st violation – Warning
2nd violation – Detention
3rd violation – ISS
Additional violations – As determined by administration, to include possible OSS.

Shirts – solid  white or navy polo style (long or short sleeve with collar) or oxford style dress shirt or approved team/club shirt
Slacks/shorts –solid  navy, black or  khaki of approved style
Shoes – black, brown, or  white with closed toe and heel (Shoelaces must be white or the same color as the shoes and must be tied)
Socks – white, navy, beige, black (ankle or knee length)
Sweaters – (pullover or cardigan) solid  navy, white, gray or black
Blazers – solid navy, black
Vests – solid navy, white, black, gray
Belts –solid color black, brown or white
Sweatshirts – Plain black or navy. No hoodies.

Shirts – solid white or navy polo style (long or short sleeve with collar) or oxford style dress shirt or team shirt   No sleeveless cap sleeves, see-through or low cut shirts permitted.
Slacks/shorts/skirts/jumpers – solid navy, black or khaki of approved style, no shorter than three inches above the knee
Shoes –  black, brown, or white with closed toes and heels (Shoelaces must be white or the same color as the shoes and must be tied)
Socks – ankle or knee length, tights, hose (non-decorative) black, white, navy, natural, beige.
Sweaters – (pullover or cardigan) solid navy , white , gray or black. No solid lace sweaters allowed.
Blazers – solid  navy, black
Vests – solid navy, white, black, gray
Belts – solid color black, brown, or white
Sweatshirts – Plain black or navy. No hoodies.


  • Attire will be neat, clean and in good repair.
  • Items not permitted are bell bottoms (denim, jean cut, logos, stretch pants or leggings, “skinny” pants, cargo pants, “jogger” pants (elastic cuff), hip huggers, contrasting  trim, or any other variation to the dress code .
  • Shoes must cover both the toe and heel (i.e. no clogs or sandals) but not enclose the ankle (i.e. hiking or working boots).
  • Socks, tights, or hose must be worn at all times.
  • Sweatshirts and overalls (long or short) are not permitted.
  • Winter coats/jackets may be worn to and from school only. Coats/jackets will not be worn in the building or from class to class because they are not part of the prescribed code of dress, unless they are SFCMS approved with SFCMS logo purchased from the school.  Camouflage, army, denim jackets, hooded sweat jackets, or over shirts worn as jackets are not permitted. Hats, headgear or sunglasses will not be worn for any reason during the school day.
  • Excessive makeup and distracting jewelry may not  be worn.
  • Males may not wear earrings.
  • Females may not wear earrings that are larger than two inches long or two inches in diameter.
  • “Sagging” or “bagging” of clothes is not permitted.
  • Shirttails will be tucked in at all times with belt or waistband visible. All shirts must be long enough to tuck in and stay.
  • White dress shirt and tie may be worn for assemblies.
  • Skirts, shorts, and jumpers will be no shorter than 3 inches above the knee.
  • Belts will be worn with slacks, shorts and skirts that have belt loops. Large buckles, studs, metal rings are not permitted.
  • Hair will be clean, combed and neatly groomed. No unnatural hair colors are permitted (green, blue, etc.) Hair accessories must be navy, white, black or brown and not distracting in style.

Physical Education is a required class. Students are required to dress out for participation.  “Dressing out” means changing from your school clothes into appropriate clothing for physical activity and changing back into your school clothes after class. To be successful in physical education class it is imperative that you dress out and participate in each class. The items that you need are as follows:
T-Shirt – A clean, plain white or gray pullover shirt.  Tank tops and half shirts will not be permitted.
Shorts – A clean pair of navy athletic shorts that are acceptable in length and fullness for freedom of movement, but will stay in place without being held by the hand or a belt.  Shorts made of denim or other heavy material with zippers or belts are not appropriate.
Pants Sweat pants or jogging suits may be worn during cold weather days at teacher’s discretion.  Coats or heavy jackets will not be acceptable.
Socks Clean white athletic socks only.
Shoes  – Rubber-soled tennis shoes, any style or brand are acceptable for PE class only. No open-toed shoes, boots, or other casual shoes will be allowed.
We cannot allow any student to dress in a manner that distracts others from learning, is offensive to others, or violates health or safety requirements.

One of the most important lessons education should teach is discipline. It is the training that develops self-control, character, orderliness, and efficiency. It is the key to good conduct and proper respect for self, other people, and property. All Seventy-First Classical Middle School students and staff have the right to expect to be able to learn and teach in an atmosphere free from unreasonable and unwarranted disruptions. We value our class time and our activity time.

Each student is required to enter each class prepared with pencils, pens, paper, textbooks, planner, and all class-related materials necessary for each class. Non-instructional items are not permitted at school unless directed by a staff member.

Assignments, both class work and homework, are necessary components of the curriculum at SFCMS. Students must complete and turn in these assignments in a timely manner. Assignments should be the work of the individual, copying another student’s work or plagiarisms are honor code violations and may result in an office referral. Students should utilize their planners for all assignments and should have their planners at all times.

Students are permitted to use backpacks, but these must be stored in a locker throughout the school day. Purses may be carried but may not exceed 8 x 8 x 3 inches in size. Gym Bags may be used only to transport gym clothes. These must be clear or mesh and may not be used as book bags. Medical exceptions to these policies must be documented by a note from a physician.

Students should be in the halls only at the beginning and close of the school day and while moving from one class to another, unless they have hall passes indicating special permission or special duties that require them to be there. It is the student’s responsibility to ask for and secure a hall pass before leaving the classroom.  Students are asked to be courteous at all times and to keep to the right when walking in the halls. Running and shouting are never permitted in the halls or anywhere on campus unless during an approved activity. Students should observe the “up” and “down” staircases during class changes.

“Cumberland County Schools acknowledges that its role is to reinforce traditional values and positive character that originate and are fostered in the home. We will, through collaborative community efforts, teach and model fundamentals of good character to include respect, responsibility, and integrity to all students.”

Respect – I will act with courtesy, tolerance, and dignity.
Responsibility – I will be dependable and accountable for my actions.
Integrity – I will have the inner strength to adhere to high ethical standards.
Caring – I will demonstrate kindness, consideration, and compassion.
Self-Discipline – I will exercise positive self-control.
Trustworthiness – I will be worthy of confidence.
Fairness – I will be impartial and equitable.
Citizenship – I will honor and contribute to the laws, policies, and human rights of the land.











Art Showcase
Battle of the Books
Chess Club
Civic Oration
DAR Essay
Geography Bee
Quiz Bowl
Science Olympiad
Show Choir
Spelling Bee
Student Council



















Published by Mary Potter on September 18, 2018