Law Office of Michelle Ball 48900,48900.5,48910,48911,48911.1,IHSS,In House Suspension,supervised suspension In House School Suspensions- What Rights Do Parents And Students Have?

In House School Suspensions- What Rights Do Parents And Students Have?


Last Updated on March 17, 2021 by Michelle Ball

By Michelle Ball, California Education Attorney for Students since 1995

There is a lot of focus in schools on the “big” discipline: out of school suspension (typically just called “suspension”) and expulsion, and how to confront and handle these, but what about an In House School Suspension (IHSS aka IHS: In House Suspension or ISS: In School Suspension)?  What protections apply to a student put on an In House School Suspension?  
First, what is an IHSS?  An IHSS (referred to in the state statutes as “supervised suspension”- see California Education Code §48911.1) is where a student commits a suspendable act, but is allowed to physically remain on the school campus during the suspension time.  The student cannot attend their regular classes during the IHSS and it can extend from one period up to 5 days.

Parents often overlook IHSS as “nothing to worry about” as the child gets to stay at school and it does not impact anyone’s schedules.  But, these “little” suspensions later need to be mentioned as a form of suspension on various college applications, depending on the college one may attend.  

Parents have rights, even with IHSS’s.  Here are some rights that most parents don’t even know they have:
1)  Right to telephone or in person notification at the time the IHSS starts, California Education Code §48911.1(d)

 2)  Right to written notice of the IHSS if it will go longer than one period (although the code does not say when), California Education Code §48911.1(d)

3)  Right to have an IHSS imposed only when “other means of correction” fail to bring about proper conduct.  However, IHSS would not be allowed if the student presents an “imminent danger or threat to the campus, pupils, or staff,” or if an expulsion is being pursued, California Education Code §§48900.5; 48911.1(a).

4)  Right to a pre-suspension “hearing” where the student is presented with the evidence, and has the ability to defend themselves, California Education Code §48911(b).


5)  Right to be notified of the “other means of correction” attempted during the suspension “hearing,” California Education Code §§48900.5, 48911(b).

6) Right to ask teachers for work, and the teachers to provide work.  If there is no work from the teachers- other work will be assigned, California Education Code §48911.1 (c)(4).

7)  Right during the IHSS to have access to “appropriate counseling services,” California Education Code §48911(c)(2).

8) If the IHSS was assigned by a teacher, the parents should be contacted by the teacher to set up a conference about the suspension, California Education Code §48910(a).

9)  Right to appeal the IHSS if for a first time offense, and other means of correction were not applied (within certain parameters- not all are appealable on the first time), California Education Code §48900.5.

IHSS are not nothing.  They are lower gradients than regular suspensions, and far better than expulsions, however, they are still a black mark on a student’s record and time that a student will be out of their regular classes, which may be significant if they have finals coming up or miss difficult subjects.  Parents should be aware of these and what they mean before they are thrust on their kids so they can act properly when they get that dreaded call at 1:00 on a Friday afternoon.