A Watch-dog Organization - Advocating for Bullied Children
& Reporting on State Anti Bullying Laws
..
Synopsis:  This law is strong on point 10 (helping victims of bullying) but missing reporting requirements and an immunity clause.  In it's original form it would have been graded an A++ law; Nevertheless, this is a great law and has been graded an A-

UTAH
A-

HB 325
BULLYING AND HAZING 
2008 GENERAL SESSION
STATE OF UTAH

Chief Sponsor: Carol Spackman Moss 

Senate Sponsor: Jon J. Greiner 
LONG TITLE
General Description:
This bill amends Title 53A, State System of Public Education, to enact provisions, and require adoption of school policies, relating to bullying and hazing.
Highlighted Provisions: This bill: defines terms; prohibits bullying or hazing, retaliation for reporting, or assisting in the investigation of, bullying or hazing, and making a false report of bullying or hazing; requires local school boards and local charter boards to adopt a policy, on or before September 1, 2009, for reporting and responding to bullying, hazing, or retaliation; describes the minimum requirements for a policy described in the preceding paragraph; requires the State Board of Education to develop, on or before September 1, 2008, a model policy on bullying, hazing, or retaliation; and provides for training and education regarding, and the prevention of, bullying, hazing, or retaliation.

Monies Appropriated in this Bill:
None
Other Special Clauses:
None

Be it enacted by the Legislature of the state of Utah:
Section 1. Section 53A-11a-101 is enacted to read:

CHAPTER 11a. BULLYING AND HAZING

Part 1. General Provisions

53A-11a-101. Title.
This chapter is known as "Bullying and Hazing."

Section 2. Section 53A-11a-102 is enacted to read:
53A-11a-102. Definitions.
As used in this part:
(1) (a) "Bullying" means intentionally or knowingly committing an act that:
(i) (A) endangers the physical health or safety of a school employee or student;
(B) involves any brutality of a physical nature such as whipping, beating, branding, calisthenics, bruising, electric shocking, placing of a harmful substance on the body, or exposure to the elements; 
(C) involves consumption of any food, liquor, drug, or other substance;
(D) involves other physical activity that endangers the physical health and safety of a school employee or student; or
(E) involves physically obstructing a school employee's or student's freedom to move; and
(ii) is done for the purpose of placing a school employee or student in fear of:
(A) physical harm to the school employee or student; or
(B) harm to property of the school employee or student.
(b) The conduct described in Subsection (1)(a) constitutes bullying, regardless of whether the person against whom the conduct is committed directed, consented to, or acquiesced in, the conduct.

(2) (a) "Hazing" means intentionally or knowingly committing an act that:
(i) (A) endangers the physical health or safety of a school employee or student;
(B) involves any brutality of a physical nature such as whipping, beating, branding, calisthenics, bruising, electric shocking, placing of a harmful substance on the body, or exposure to the elements;
(C) involves consumption of any food, liquor, drug, or other substance;
(D) involves other physical activity that endangers the physical health and safety of a
school employee or student; or 
(E) involves physically obstructing a school employee's or student's freedom to move;
and
(ii) (A) is done for the purpose of initiation or admission into, affiliation with, holding office in, or as a condition for, membership or acceptance, or continued membership or acceptance, in any school or school sponsored team, organization, program, or event; or 
(B) if the person committing the act against a school employee or student knew that the school employee or student is a member of, or candidate for, membership with a school, or school sponsored team, organization, program, or event to which the person committing the act belongs to or participates in.
(b) The conduct described in Subsection (2)(a) constitutes hazing, regardless of whether the person against whom the conduct is committed directed, consented to, or acquiesced in, the conduct.

(3) "Policy" means a bullying and hazing policy described in Section 53A-11a-301 .

(4) "Retaliate" means an act or communication intended:
(a) as retribution against a person for reporting bullying or hazing; or
(b) to improperly influence the investigation of, or the response to, a report of bullying or hazing.
(5) "School" means any public elementary or secondary school or charter school.
(6) "School board" means:
(a) a local school board; or
(b) a local charter board.
(7) "School employee" means:
(a) school teachers;
(b) school staff;
(c) school administrators; and
(d) all others employed, directly or indirectly, by the school, school board, or school district.

Section 3. Section 53A-11a-201 is enacted to read:
Part 2. Prohibitions

53A-11a-201. Bullying and hazing prohibited.
(1) No school employee or student may engage in bullying a school employee or
student:
(a) on school property;
(b) at a school related or sponsored event;
(c) on a school bus;
(d) at a school bus stop; or
(e) while the school employee or student is traveling to or from a location or event described in Subsections (1)(a) through (d).
(2) No school employee or student may engage in hazing a school employee or student at any time or in any location.

Section 4. Section 53A-11a-202 is enacted to read:
53A-11a-202. Retaliation and S. making false allegation prohibited.
(1) No school employee or student may engage in retaliation against:
(a) a school employee;
(b) a student; or
(c) an investigator for, or a witness of, an alleged incident of bullying, hazing, or retaliation.
(2) No school employee or student may make a false allegation of bullying, hazing, or retaliation against a school employee or student.

Section 5 53A-11a-301 .S is enacted to read:
Part 3. School Policy

53A-11a-301 .S . Bullying and hazing policy.
(1) On or before September 1, 2009, each school board shall adopt a bullying or hazing policy.
(2) The policy shall:
(a) be developed only with input from:
(i) students;
(ii) parents;
(iii) teachers;
(iv) school administrators;
(v) school staff; or
(vi) local law enforcement agencies;
(b) be implemented in an ongoing, consistent, and nondiscriminatory manner;
(c) be integrated with existing school discipline policies and violence prevention efforts; and
(d) provide protection to a student, regardless of the student's legal status.
(3) The policy shall include the following components:
(a) definitions of bullying and hazing that, at a minimum, include the conduct described in the definitions of bullying and hazing under Section 53A-11a-102 ;
(b) the prohibitions described in Part 2, Prohibitions;
(c) a description of the action that may be taken, and consequences or penalties that may be imposed, for engaging in prohibited bullying, hazing, or retaliation against a school employee or student for reporting bullying or hazing, which shall include:
(i) suspension; or
(ii) dissolution of a team, organization, or other group;
(d) procedures for protecting:
(i) a victim of bullying or hazing from being subjected to further bullying or hazing; and
(ii) a school employee or student from retaliation for reporting bullying or hazing;
(e) procedures for promptly reporting to law enforcement all acts of bullying, hazing, or retaliation that constitute criminal activity;
(f) procedures for promptly investigating and responding to reports of bullying, hazing, or retaliation;
(g) procedures allowing for anonymous reporting of bullying, hazing, or retaliation;
(h) specification of the persons responsible for taking, investigating, and responding to reports of bullying, hazing, or retaliation;
(i) a procedure for referring a victim of bullying or hazing to counseling;
(j) involving the parents or guardians of a perpetrator or victim of bullying, hazing, or retaliation in the process of responding to, and resolving, conduct prohibited by this chapter;
(k) to the extent permitted by federal and state law, including the federal Family Educational and Privacy Rights Act of 1974, as amended, a procedure informing the parents or guardians of a student who is a victim of bullying or hazing of the actions taken against the perpetrators of the bullying or hazing;
(l) procedures and plans for publicizing the policy to school employees, students, and
parents and guardians of students; and
(m) procedures and plans for training school employees and students in recognizing and preventing bullying, hazing, or retaliation.
(4) A copy of the policy shall be included in student conduct handbooks and employee
handbooks.
(5) A policy may not permit formal disciplinary action that is based solely on an anonymous report of bullying, hazing, or retaliation.
(6) Nothing in this chapter is intended to infringe upon the right of a school employee or student to exercise their right of free speech.

Section 6 Section 53A-11a-302 .is enacted to read:
53A-11a-302 .S . Model policy.

On or before September 1, 2008, the State Board of Education shall:
(1) develop a model policy on bullying, hazing, and retaliation, consistent with Section 53A-11a-301 .S , in order to assist a school board in adopting a policy under Section 53A-11a-301 .S ; and
(2) post the model policy described in Subsection (1) on the State Board of Education's website.

Section 7 Section 53A-11a-401 is enacted to read:
Part 4 Miscellaneous

53A-11a-401 .S . Training, education, and prevention.
(1) A school board shall include in the training of a school employee, training regarding bullying, hazing, and retaliation.
(2) To the extent that state or federal funding is available for this purpose, school boards are encouraged to implement programs or initiatives, in addition to the training described in Subsection (1), to provide for training and education regarding, and the prevention of, bullying, hazing, and retaliation.
(3) The programs or initiatives described in Subsection (2) may involve:
(a) the establishment of a bullying task force; or
(b) the involvement of school employees, students, or law enforcement.

Section S. 8 .S . Section  53A-11a-402 .S is enacted to read:

53A-11a-402 .S . Other forms of legal redress.
(1) Nothing in this chapter prohibits a victim of bullying, hazing, or retaliation from seeking legal redress under any other provisions of civil or criminal law.
(2) This section does not create or alter tort liability.

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