Student Code of Conduct

Our BCEC Code of Conduct promotes a safe, respectful, and learning-focused environment for all students.  We expect all students to give their best effort every day and to treat others in a caring and respectful manner. We expect students to make choices that promote their own safety and the safety of others on campus, to avoid behaviors that may jeopardize their academic success, and to act maturely and with integrity.  Students should come to class with an open mind and should participate appropriately so that learning time is maximized for all students.

Students should always remember that when they are on the campus of AB-Tech, they represent Early College.  As part of our school community, students should demonstrate a commitment to meet these expectations, and the consequences for not doing so are intended to promote personal responsibility.  

In addition to the Early College expectations, students must also follow all A-B Tech guidelines for student behavior as outlined in the A-B Tech student handbook.  

Academic Integrity

Buncombe County Early College is a school of high expectations. We believe in academic integrity, honesty, and trust. Students should do their work so they can do their own learning.  Cheating, including plagiarism, of any kind is not tolerated.

Students found to be cheating or plagiarizing work, or assisting another student to cheat, will receive a failing grade for the assignment.  We will also contact the parent, and the student will receive a discipline referral. A second incident of academic dishonesty could lead to failure of the course or dismissal from Buncombe County Early College and/or A-B Tech.

Cell Phones and Electronic Devices

Cell phones and some electronic devices are allowed at Early College and on the A-B Tech campus. However, cell phones and other personal electronic devices must be put away during class time unless otherwise instructed by the teacher for instructional purposes.  All electronic devices are subject to Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) regulations and disciplinary action. Students may not video or audio record a teacher, classmate(s) or a class without prior consent from the teacher.

The following steps will be taken if students have their phones or other unapproved devices out in class:

  • 1st offense: Verbal warning
  • 2nd offense: Teacher will collect and send phone to main office for student to pick up at the end of the day.
  • 3rd offense: Teacher will collect and send phone to main office for parent to pick up at the end of the day.
  • 4th offense: Referral to administration for Code of Conduct Violation with additional disciplinary action.

Dress Code

Early College students are in an adult environment and are expected to dress maturely and in a neat and clean manner. The Buncombe County School Board believes that the dress and personal appearance of students greatly affect their academic performance and their interaction with other students. If a student’s dress causes a distraction to the learning environment, it will be deemed a violation of the dress code. - Shoes must be worn at all times. - Clothing should cover undergarments, mid-sections, and cleavage and should be appropriate for a school setting. - Pajamas and bedroom slippers not appropriate for a school setting or an a college campus.    - Sunglasses may not be worn inside.   - Clothing and accessories that advertise illegal items (including all tobacco products), is sexual in nature, discriminatory and/or vulgar or potentially disruptive is prohibited. Any clothing that has potential to create significant discord among members of our school community can be prohibited. An administrator will make that decision based on the potential for substantial disruption to the instructional process and will work with families to reach reasonable solutions.

Students found to be in violation of the dress code will first be given the option to change or correct the dress code issue.  If the student does not comply with the initial request, he or she will be referred directly to an administrator who will determine the most appropriate disciplinary consequence.  Repeat dress code offences are considered Code of Conduct violations.

Use of A-B Tech Space and Birch Lobby

Year Three, Four, and Five BCEC students are welcome to use designated common spaces on campus if they do so in an appropriate manner and in a way that reflects positively on our school community.

The Birch lobby is one of many locations on the AB-Tech campus designed for social connection, study, and leisure for students. The lobby is particularly special to BCEC students because of its proximity to our high school classrooms. While it may feel like a part of the campus that “belongs” to Early College students, it is important to know that the space is shared with other A-B Tech students and staff.  

The following rules apply to our use of A-B Tech space in general and to the Birch Lobby in particular:
-   Students should take care to treat all areas on campus with respect, including picking up after themselves and disposing of trash in the appropriate manner.
-  Students must make sure the volume of conversations is kept an an appropriate level and that language, including gestures, is appropriate at all times.

 -   Year One and Year Two students are not allowed to be in the Birch lobby or other areas away from the main Birch hallway without supervision.

 -  Students may not play group games, including video games, in the Birch Lobby. Students who have time to play video games or watch videos must have the volume off or use headphones.Video games or videos must be school-appropriate. (No M or R rated materials.)

-  Students may not engage in public display of affection in any area on campus.

Tobacco and e-cigarettes

A-B Tech is a tobacco-free campus.  Additionally, the use or possession of tobacco or e-cigarettes is not permitted by Buncombe County School Board policy:

In support of the board’s commitments and state and federal law, students are prohibited from using or possessing any tobacco product or e-cigarette product: 1) in any school building, on any school campus, and in or on any other school property owned or operated by the school board, including school vehicles; 2) at any school-related activity, including athletic events; or 3) at any time when the student is subject to the supervision of school personnel, including during school trips.

Students in violation of the tobacco-free rules will be subject to discipline from both the high school and the college, including short-term suspension and a search of the individual student and his/her possessions

Alcohol and Illegal Drugs

The use or possession of controlled substances or possession of paraphernalia as defined by North Carolina Law, including alcohol, is prohibited on school property at all times, which includes school sponsored activities or events.  Possession of substances that simulate controlled substances is also prohibited. Students in violation of this policy will be subject to discipline from both the high school and the college, including possible legal action.

Sale or distribution of drugs, narcotics, or alcohol on campus or within 1000 yards of campus is a violation of federal and state law, and will result in 10 days out of school suspension, legal action, and long-term suspension.

Discrimination, Harassment, and Bullying

BCEC and the Buncombe County School Board acknowledges the dignity and worth of all students and employees and strives to create a safe, orderly, caring and inviting school environment to facilitate student learning and achievement. The board will not tolerate any form of unlawful discrimination, harassment or bullying in any of its educational or employment activities or programs. See BCS Board Policy 1710/4021/7230.

Bullying, taunting, personal or sexual harassment, racial slurs or intimidation will result in immediate disciplinary action. Per BCS Board Policy:

It shall be unlawful for any student in any college or school in the State to engage in what is known as hazing, or to aid or abet any other student in the commission of this offense.  For the purposes of this section hazing is defined as follows: "to annoy any student by playing abusive or ridiculous tricks upon him, to frighten, scold, beat or harass him, or to subject him to personal indignity."  Any violation of this section shall constitute a misdemeanor punishable by a fine not to exceed five hundred dollars ($500), imprisonment for not more than six months, or both. (1913, c.169,ss.1,2,3,4:C.S., s4217; 1969, c. 1224, 2.1.)

Upon conviction of any student of the offense of hazing, or of abetting in the commission of this offense, he shall, in addition to any punishment imposed on the court, be expelled from the college or school he is attending.  The faculty or governing board of any college or school charged with the duty of expulsion of students for proper cause shall, upon such conviction at once expel the offender, and a failure to do so shall be a misdemeanor. (1913, c. 109; ss. 5,5; C.S., s. 4218). Any violation of the aforementioned will result in disciplinary action within the school, criminal charges, and/or possible civil penalties being incurred.  

If a student believes that he or she has been subjected to forms of bullying, hazing, or discrimination whether verbal, written, visual, or physical, the student should immediately report the situation to the school administration.  If for any reason, the student is not comfortable reporting to the school officials, then the complaint should be reported to the Anti-Bullying Hotline: (828) 225-5292 or by selecting the Report Bullying link on the BCS website.

Gang and Gang-related Activity

Buncombe County Schools defines a “gang” as any ongoing alliance or association of three or more individuals, formal or informal, having as one of its primary activities the commission of criminal acts or purposeful violation of school policy.  Inherent to the gang’s structure is a common set of identifying traits including names, signs, colors, and symbols.       

The following conduct or activity is prohibited and subject to consequences ranging from an initial warning accompanied by parent contact to assigned periods of short-term suspension to administrative recommendation for long-term suspension:

  • Displaying, possessing or distributing any clothing, jewelry, emblem, visible body marking, or literature that communicates or symbolizes affiliation with a gang 
  • Communicating gang affiliation through either verbal or nonverbal methods including, but not limited to, hand gestures, drawing, and electronic texting. 
  • Tagging school or personal property with gang related symbols. 
  • Harassment, intimidation, or solicitation directed toward a student or staff member relative to gang activity.


Weapons are prohibited on school campus by state law.  Students in possession of weapons/firearms will be removed from the school campus, and suspended with a recommended long-term suspension up to 365 days and prosecuted.

Possession by a student of a firearm of any kind anywhere on school property is a felony. Possession of BB guns, air pistols, knives and other weapons on school property is a misdemeanor.  It is also unlawful to cause, aid, or encourage anyone to bring a firearm or other weapon on school property.

Other Disruptive Behaviors

In addition to the specific behaviors outlined above, the following disruptive behaviors are prohibited by Buncombe County School Board policy:

  1. intentional verbal or physical acts that result or have the potential to result in blocking access to school functions or facilities or preventing the convening or continuation of school-related functions;  
  • possessing or distributing literature or illustrations that significantly disrupt the educational process or that are obscene or unlawful;  

  • engaging in behavior that is immoral, indecent, lewd, disreputable or of an overly sexual nature in the school setting;  

  • failing to observe established safety rules, standards and regulations, including on buses and in hallways; and  

  • interfering with the operation of school buses, including delaying the bus schedule, getting off at an unauthorized stop, and willfully trespassing upon a school bus.

Student Search and Seizure

 It is the policy of the Buncombe County Board of Education to allow school officials to conduct reasonable searches of student’s person, lockers, automobiles, and other belongings within the school premises. All Buncombe County School Board policies apply. For more information, see school board policy # 4342.


Any student conduct not addressed in this handbook that distracts from the learning environment or jeopardizes the health or safety of others will be addressed on an individual basis. Discipline Flow Chart