Senate File 345 - Reprinted SENATE FILE 345 BY COMMITTEE ON EDUCATION (SUCCESSOR TO SSB 1044) (As Amended and Passed by the Senate March 31, 2015 ) A BILL FOR An Act relating to state and school antiharassment and 1 antibullying policies, providing for training for school 2 personnel, establishing a bullying and violence prevention 3 student mentoring pilot program, and providing for a school 4 climate and bullying work group. 5 BE IT ENACTED BY THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF THE STATE OF IOWA: 6 SF 345 (6) 86 je/nh/jh
S.F. 345 Section 1. Section 256.9, Code 2015, is amended by adding 1 the following new subsection: 2 NEW SUBSECTION . 66. Subject to an appropriation of funds by 3 the general assembly, ensure each school district has access to 4 adequate training on conducting investigations of complaints of 5 incidents of harassment or bullying pursuant to section 280.28 6 by offering such training on an annual basis to at least one 7 employee per district. 8 Sec. 2. NEW SECTION . 256.34 Bullying and violence 9 prevention student mentoring pilot program. 10 1. Subject to an appropriation of funds by the general 11 assembly, the department shall establish a student mentoring 12 pilot program to explore how student leadership can help 13 prevent bullying and violence in schools. The program shall 14 promote best practices for bullying and violence prevention for 15 middle and high school students. 16 2. The department shall establish the program in at least 17 two middle schools and two high schools in the state. The 18 selected schools shall include both urban and rural schools. 19 3. The department shall establish criteria for the 20 selection of participating schools and evaluation of the 21 program. 22 Sec. 3. Section 280.28, subsection 2, paragraphs a and c, 23 Code 2015, are amended to read as follows: 24 a. “Electronic” means any communication involving the 25 transmission of information by wire, radio, optical cable, 26 electromagnetic, or other similar means. “Electronic” includes 27 but is not limited to communication via electronic mail, 28 internet-based communications including social networking 29 sites , pager service, cell phones, and electronic text 30 messaging , or any other electronic communication site, device, 31 or means . 32 c. “Trait or characteristic of the student” includes but 33 is not limited to age, color, creed, national origin, race, 34 religion, marital status, sex, sexual orientation, gender 35 -1- SF 345 (6) 86 je/nh/jh 1/ 6
S.F. 345 identity, physical attributes, physical or mental ability or 1 disability, ancestry, political party preference, political 2 belief, socioeconomic status, or familial status , behavior, or 3 any other distinguishing characteristic. This paragraph shall 4 be construed broadly to achieve the purposes of this section . 5 Sec. 4. Section 280.28, subsection 3, Code 2015, is amended 6 by adding the following new paragraph: 7 NEW PARAGRAPH . h. A procedure for the notification as 8 soon as practicable of the parents or guardians of the alleged 9 targeted students and perpetrators in a reported incident 10 of harassment or bullying. The procedure shall include an 11 exception to the notification requirement if a school official 12 or a student whose parent or guardian would otherwise be 13 notified reasonably believes notification would subject the 14 student to rejection, abuse, or neglect. 15 Sec. 5. Section 280.28, Code 2015, is amended by adding the 16 following new subsections: 17 NEW SUBSECTION . 9. Authority off school grounds. 18 a. A school official may investigate and impose school 19 discipline in a founded case of harassment or bullying that 20 occurs outside of school, off of school property, or away from 21 a school function or school-sponsored activity if all of the 22 following apply: 23 (1) An incident of harassment or bullying is reported 24 pursuant to the school’s policy adopted under subsection 3, 25 paragraph “e” . 26 (2) The alleged incident of harassment or bullying has 27 an effect on a student on school grounds that creates an 28 objectively hostile school environment that meets one or more 29 of the conditions set out under subsection 2, paragraph “b” . 30 b. A school official’s investigation and response to an 31 alleged incident of bullying or harassment that occurs outside 32 of school, off of school property, or away from a school 33 function or school-sponsored activity may include referring 34 the matter to appropriate community-based agencies including 35 -2- SF 345 (6) 86 je/nh/jh 2/ 6
S.F. 345 but not limited to social services agencies, law enforcement 1 agencies, and nonprofit organizations. 2 NEW SUBSECTION . 10. Rule of construction. This section 3 shall not be construed to diminish a school administrator’s 4 discretion to impose discipline or take other action in the 5 case of an unfounded incident of harassment or bullying if a 6 student’s behavior otherwise constitutes student misconduct 7 based on other grounds. 8 Sec. 6. Section 282.18, subsection 11, Code 2015, is amended 9 to read as follows: 10 11. A pupil who participates in open enrollment for purposes 11 of attending a grade in grades nine through twelve in a school 12 district other than the district of residence is ineligible to 13 participate in varsity interscholastic athletic contests and 14 athletic competitions during the pupil’s first ninety school 15 days of enrollment in the district except that the pupil may 16 participate immediately in a varsity interscholastic sport if 17 the pupil is entering grade nine for the first time and did 18 not participate in an interscholastic athletic competition for 19 another school or school district during the summer immediately 20 following eighth grade, if the district of residence and the 21 other school district jointly participate in the sport, if the 22 sport in which the pupil wishes to participate is not offered 23 in the district of residence, if the pupil chooses to use 24 open enrollment to attend school in another school district 25 because the district in which the student previously attended 26 school was dissolved and merged with one or more contiguous 27 school districts under section 256.11, subsection 12 , if the 28 pupil participates in open enrollment because the pupil’s 29 district of residence has entered into a whole grade sharing 30 agreement with another district for the pupil’s grade, or if 31 the parent or guardian of the pupil participating in open 32 enrollment is an active member of the armed forces and resides 33 in permanent housing on government property provided by a 34 branch of the armed services , or if the district of residence 35 -3- SF 345 (6) 86 je/nh/jh 3/ 6
S.F. 345 determines that the pupil was subject to a founded incident 1 of harassment or bullying as defined in section 280.28 while 2 attending school in the district of residence in the current or 3 previous school year and both the district of residence and the 4 other school district agree to allow the pupil to participate 5 immediately in a varsity interscholastic sport . A pupil who 6 has paid tuition and attended school, or has attended school 7 pursuant to a mutual agreement between the two districts, 8 in a district other than the pupil’s district of residence 9 for at least one school year is also eligible to participate 10 immediately in interscholastic athletic contests and athletic 11 competitions under this section , but only as a member of a team 12 from the district that pupil had attended. For purposes of 13 this subsection , “school days of enrollment” does not include 14 enrollment in summer school. For purposes of this subsection , 15 “varsity” means the same as defined in section 256.46 . 16 Sec. 7. SCHOOL CLIMATE AND BULLYING WORK GROUP. 17 1. The department of education shall convene a 18 public-private work group of representatives of state and local 19 agencies, citizens, community groups, and organizations who 20 have experience and expertise in the areas of antibullying 21 education, research, and training. The work group, after 22 reviewing existing research, data, and strategies, shall 23 provide recommendations to the department regarding best 24 practices, training, resources, additional research needs, 25 data collection, changes to state law and administrative 26 rules, and any other matters to enhance statewide school 27 climate improvement and bullying prevention, awareness, and 28 intervention. 29 2. The membership of the work group shall include but not be 30 limited to the following, to be appointed by the director: 31 a. At least three Iowans who are experts in research-based 32 antibullying curricula or programs. 33 b. A public or nonpublic high school student. 34 c. A parent of a student enrolled in a public elementary or 35 -4- SF 345 (6) 86 je/nh/jh 4/ 6
S.F. 345 secondary school on a full-time basis. 1 d. A parent of a student enrolled in a nonpublic elementary 2 or secondary school on a full-time basis. 3 e. A member from nominees submitted by the school 4 administrators of Iowa. 5 f. A member from nominees submitted by the Iowa association 6 of school boards. 7 g. A member from nominees submitted by the Iowa state 8 education association. 9 h. Representatives from any organizations representing 10 other relevant public or nonpublic school professionals. 11 i. A representative from a statewide organization that 12 provides research-based training on bullying for school 13 professionals. 14 j. A representative from at least one statewide 15 organization with at least five years’ experience in advocating 16 on bullying prevention based on research-based best practices. 17 k. A representative for children placed in foster care. 18 l. A representative of school counselors. 19 m. A member from nominees submitted by the Iowa parent 20 teacher association. 21 3. When making appointments to the work group, the director 22 shall ensure that public, nonpublic, urban, and rural schools 23 are adequately represented by the membership of the work group. 24 4. The work group shall also include two ex officio members 25 of each house of the general assembly. One member each shall 26 be selected by the majority leader of the senate and by the 27 minority leader of the senate, and one member each shall be 28 selected by the speaker of the house of representatives and by 29 the minority leader of the house of representatives. Members 30 of the general assembly shall serve for terms as provided in 31 section 69.16B and shall be entitled to receive per diem and 32 necessary travel and actual expenses pursuant to section 2.10, 33 subsection 5, while carrying out their official duties as 34 members of the work group. 35 -5- SF 345 (6) 86 je/nh/jh 5/ 6
S.F. 345 5. The department shall convene the work group by October 1 1, 2015. The work group shall submit its findings and 2 recommendations in a final report to the department and the 3 chairpersons and ranking members of the senate and house 4 education committees by December 15, 2016. 5 -6- SF 345 (6) 86 je/nh/jh 6/ 6