Florida Senate - 2015                                     SB 530
       By Senator Ring
       29-00561A-15                                           2015530__
    1                        A bill to be entitled                      
    2         An act relating to bullying and harassment policies in
    3         schools; amending s. 1006.147, F.S.; requiring school
    4         districts to revise their bullying and harassment
    5         policies at specified intervals; specifying that a
    6         school district policy require a school to implement
    7         the policy in a certain manner and integrate it with
    8         the school’s bullying prevention and intervention
    9         program; requiring such a policy to include mandatory
   10         reporting procedures and a list of authorized programs
   11         that provide bullying and harassment identification,
   12         prevention, and response instruction; providing an
   13         effective date.
   15  Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:
   17         Section 1. Subsection (4) of section 1006.147, Florida
   18  Statutes, is amended to read:
   19         1006.147 Bullying and harassment prohibited.—
   20         (4) Each school district shall adopt and revise every 3
   21  years a policy prohibiting bullying and harassment of a student
   22  or employee of a public K-12 educational institution. Each
   23  school district’s policy shall be in substantial conformity with
   24  the Department of Education’s model policy. The school district
   25  bullying and harassment policy shall afford all students the
   26  same protection regardless of their status under the law. The
   27  school district may establish separate discrimination policies
   28  that include categories of students. The school district shall
   29  involve students, parents, teachers, administrators, school
   30  staff, school volunteers, community representatives, and local
   31  law enforcement agencies in the process of adopting and revising
   32  the policy. The school district policy must require a school to
   33  implement the policy be implemented in a manner that is ongoing
   34  throughout the school year and integrated with a school’s
   35  curriculum, a school’s bullying prevention and intervention
   36  program, a school’s discipline policies, and other violence
   37  prevention efforts. The school district policy must contain, at
   38  a minimum, the following components:
   39         (a) A statement prohibiting bullying and harassment.
   40         (b) A definition of bullying and a definition of harassment
   41  that include the definitions listed in this section.
   42         (c) A description of the type of behavior expected from
   43  each student and employee of a public K-12 educational
   44  institution.
   45         (d) The consequences for a student or employee of a public
   46  K-12 educational institution who commits an act of bullying or
   47  harassment.
   48         (e) The consequences for a student or employee of a public
   49  K-12 educational institution who is found to have wrongfully and
   50  intentionally accused another of an act of bullying or
   51  harassment.
   52         (f) A procedure for the mandatory reporting of an act of
   53  bullying or harassment, including provisions that permit a
   54  person to anonymously report such an act. However, this
   55  paragraph does not permit formal disciplinary action to be based
   56  solely on an anonymous report.
   57         (g) A procedure for the prompt investigation of a report of
   58  bullying or harassment and the persons responsible for the
   59  investigation. The investigation of a reported act of bullying
   60  or harassment is deemed to be a school-related activity and
   61  begins with a report of such an act. Incidents that require a
   62  reasonable investigation when reported to appropriate school
   63  authorities shall include alleged incidents of bullying or
   64  harassment allegedly committed against a child while the child
   65  is en route to school aboard a school bus or at a school bus
   66  stop.
   67         (h) A process to investigate whether a reported act of
   68  bullying or harassment is within the scope of the district
   69  school system and, if not, a process for referral of such an act
   70  to the appropriate jurisdiction. Computers without web-filtering
   71  software or computers with web-filtering software that is
   72  disabled shall be used when complaints of cyberbullying are
   73  investigated.
   74         (i) A procedure for providing immediate notification to the
   75  parents of a victim of bullying or harassment and the parents of
   76  the perpetrator of an act of bullying or harassment, as well as
   77  notification to all local agencies where criminal charges may be
   78  pursued against the perpetrator.
   79         (j) A procedure to refer victims and perpetrators of
   80  bullying or harassment for counseling.
   81         (k) A procedure for including incidents of bullying or
   82  harassment in the school’s report of data concerning school
   83  safety and discipline required under s. 1006.09(6). The report
   84  must include each incident of bullying or harassment and the
   85  resulting consequences, including discipline and referrals. The
   86  report must include in a separate section each reported incident
   87  of bullying or harassment that does not meet the criteria of a
   88  prohibited act under this section with recommendations regarding
   89  such incidents. The Department of Education shall aggregate
   90  information contained in the reports.
   91         (l) A list of programs authorized by the school district
   92  that provide procedure for providing instruction to students,
   93  parents, teachers, school administrators, counseling staff, and
   94  school volunteers on identifying, preventing, and responding to
   95  bullying or harassment, including instruction on recognizing
   96  behaviors that lead to bullying and harassment and taking
   97  appropriate preventive action based on those observations.
   98         (m) A procedure for regularly reporting to a victim’s
   99  parents the actions taken to protect the victim.
  100         (n) A procedure for publicizing the policy, which must
  101  include its publication in the code of student conduct required
  102  under s. 1006.07(2) and in all employee handbooks.
  103         Section 2. This act shall take effect July 1, 2015.