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Textbook Policies

Textbook Policies

Textbook Policy

Students are responsible for the care and preservation of all instructional materials checked out to them. Textbooks checked out to you with your Hillsdale High School ID card are the property of the San Mateo Union High School District, and it is your privilege to use these books while you are a student at Hillsdale High School. Students will be issued textbooks only for those classes in which they are enrolled. Students are required to return all textbooks at the conclusion of the class, at the direction or request of the administration, teacher or library staff, or if the student leaves Hillsdale High School.

Textbook Rules

  • Textbooks are checked out with a valid Hillsdale High School ID card. Books are barcoded and linked to each student's account.

  • Students are to protect textbooks from damage. Non-adhesive book covers are to be used. If you notice a problem with the textbook when it is checked out to you, let the Hillsdale Library staff know within the first 2 weeks so you are not held responsible for the damage.

  • Students are not to write, underline, or highlight textbooks, including novels checked out for English classes (use sticky notes).

  • HOWEVER, you should write your name in the front inside cover with pencil or its facing page of the book when it's issued to you, so that when you return it at the end of the course, you know that you're returning your textbook and not your friend's.

  • All textbooks and materials checked out to the student must be returned in good, usable condition, with the barcode still attached to the book or material (e.g., calculator) at the end of a class.  

  • If a textbook or material is lost or damaged, the student is required to pay all costs for the textbook or material that was checked out to him or her.

Seniors will not be given their diploma until all textbook obligations are met. Schedules, diplomas and school privileges, such as dances, may be withheld until all materials are returned or fines/fees have been paid for. Textbooks for semester-long classes (for example, Government, Economics, Modern World History or Health) should be turned in after the final because second semester students will need them! Novels used in English class should be returned as soon as your class is finished with them.

Textbook Fines & Fees

  • $5 = Missing Barcode

  • $5 = Graffiti, Highlighting, Obscenities, Writing

  • $10 = Cover Damage, Loose Binding, Torn or Stained Pages

  • 100% of Cost for Lost or Destroyed/Unusable Textbooks/Mold etc.

Replacement IDs are available for $5 from Ms. Kirk by the Counseling Office. 

Automatic overdue emails listed under TEXTBOOK FINES are simply a reminder to turn in the books if you are finished with them. The "price" is what it costs to replace the novel if it is lost, NOT an overdue fine. It's okay to keep novels if you are still using them, but do not start a collection in your bed or in your car! You may be restricted from checking out more books until past ones are returned or paid for, if lost.

Please follow these steps to confirm if you have materials checked out that need to be collected from the library.  

California Education Code on Textbooks

Information from California Education Code (EC) regarding damage to student-issued instructional materials.

Section 60010 (h) defines instructional materials:
"Instructional materials" means all materials that are designed for use by pupils and their teachers as a learning resource and help pupils to acquire facts, skills, or opinions or to develop cognitive processes. Instructional materials may be printed or nonprinted, and may include textbooks, technology-based materials, other educational materials, and tests.

EC Section 60119(c)(1) defines sufficient textbooks or instructional materials as follows:
each pupil, including English learners, has a standards-aligned textbook or instructional materials, or both, to use in class and to take home.

EC Section 48904(a)(1) holds parents or guardians responsible for the cost of replacing a textbook that is willfully defaced or not returned:
…the parent or guardian of any minor…who willfully cuts, defaces, or otherwise injures in any way any property, real or personal, belonging to a school district or private school, or personal property of any school employee, shall be liable for all damages so caused by the minor. The liability of the parent or guardian shall not exceed ten thousand dollars ($10,000). The parent or guardian shall also be liable for the amount of any reward not exceeding ten thousand dollars ($10,000) paid pursuant to Section 53069.5 of the Government Code. The parent or guardian of a minor shall be liable to a school district or private school for all property belonging to the school district or private school loaned to the minor and not returned upon demand of an employee of the district or private school authorized to make the demand.
Thus wear or damage to instructional materials through ordinary use, or from manufacturing defect, would not apply.

EC Section 48904 (b)(1) allows schools to withhold student grades, diploma and transcripts:
Any school district or private school whose real or personal property has been willfully cut, defaced, or otherwise injured, or whose property is loaned to a pupil and willfully not returned upon demand of an employee of the district or private school authorized to make the demand may, after affording the pupil his or her due process rights, withhold the grades, diploma, and transcripts of the pupil responsible for the damage until the pupil or the pupil's parent or guardian has paid for the damages thereto…

EC Section 48904 (b)(2) provides the process:
The school district or private school shall notify the parent or guardian of the pupil in writing of the pupil's alleged misconduct before withholding the pupil's grades, diploma, or transcripts pursuant to this subdivision. When the minor and parent are unable to pay for the damages, or to return the property, the school district or private school shall provide a program of voluntary work for the minor in lieu of the payment of monetary damages. Upon completion of the voluntary work, the grades, diploma, and transcripts of the pupil shall be released.

EC Section 48904(b)(3) requires school districts to establish local policy:
The governing board of each school district or governing body of each private school shall establish rules and regulations governing procedures for the implementation of this subdivision…
In regards to a district specific policy, it's important to remember that a student must have access to textbooks both in the classroom and at home, thus withholding textbooks from a student or restricting textbook use to the library would be problematic. Also, please note the requirements of EC 48904(b)(2) requiring parent notification and the necessary opportunity for the student to be able to "work off" the cost of the instructional materials.

Please also be aware of EC Section 60070 which states:
No school official shall require any pupil, except pupils in classes for adults to purchase any instructional material for the pupils' use in the school.