Florida Senate - 2020                                    SB 1058
       By Senator Taddeo
       40-00735A-20                                          20201058__
    1                        A bill to be entitled                      
    2         An act relating to corporal punishment in public
    3         schools; amending s. 1002.20, F.S.; providing that
    4         only school principals, and not teachers, may
    5         administer corporal punishment to public school
    6         students; requiring school principals to notify
    7         students’ parents in writing and receive written
    8         consent before administering corporal punishment;
    9         requiring school principals who have administered
   10         corporal punishment to provide parents with written
   11         explanations of the punishment; amending s. 1003.01,
   12         F.S.; revising the definition of the term “corporal
   13         punishment”; conforming a provision to changes made by
   14         the act; amending s. 1003.32, F.S.; authorizing
   15         teachers and other instructional personnel to request
   16         that principals administer corporal punishment;
   17         removing corporal punishment as an option for teachers
   18         to use to manage student behavior; prohibiting
   19         principals from administering corporal punishment
   20         unless the principal has taken specified actions;
   21         prohibiting principals from administering corporal
   22         punishment to students with disabilities; providing an
   23         effective date.
   25  Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:
   27         Section 1. Paragraph (c) of subsection (4) of section
   28  1002.20, Florida Statutes, is amended to read:
   29         1002.20 K-12 student and parent rights.—Parents of public
   30  school students must receive accurate and timely information
   31  regarding their child’s academic progress and must be informed
   32  of ways they can help their child to succeed in school. K-12
   33  students and their parents are afforded numerous statutory
   34  rights including, but not limited to, the following:
   35         (4) DISCIPLINE.—
   36         (c) Corporal punishment.—
   37         1. In accordance with the provisions of s. 1003.32,
   38  corporal punishment of a public school student may only be
   39  administered by a teacher or school principal within guidelines
   40  prepared by of the school principal and according to district
   41  school board policy. The school principal must notify the
   42  student’s parent in writing, and the student’s parent must
   43  provide written consent, before the principal administers the
   44  punishment. Another adult must be present and must be informed
   45  in the student’s presence of the reason for the punishment. A
   46  Upon request, the teacher or school principal who has
   47  administered corporal punishment must provide the parent with a
   48  written explanation of the reason for the punishment and the
   49  name of the other adult who was present.
   50         2. A district school board having a policy authorizing the
   51  use of corporal punishment as a form of discipline shall review
   52  its policy on corporal punishment once every 3 years during a
   53  district school board meeting held pursuant to s. 1001.372. The
   54  district school board shall take public testimony at the board
   55  meeting. If such board meeting is not held in accordance with
   56  this subparagraph, the portion of the district school board’s
   57  policy authorizing corporal punishment expires.
   58         Section 2. Subsection (7) of section 1003.01, Florida
   59  Statutes, is amended to read:
   60         1003.01 Definitions.—As used in this chapter, the term:
   61         (7) “Corporal punishment” means the moderate use of
   62  physical force or physical contact by a teacher or principal as
   63  may be necessary to maintain discipline or to enforce school
   64  rule through the use of a paddle. However, the term “corporal
   65  punishment” does not include the use of such reasonable force by
   66  a teacher or principal as may be necessary for self-protection
   67  or to protect other students from disruptive students.
   68         Section 3. Paragraph (k) of subsection (1) of section
   69  1003.32, Florida Statutes, is amended to read:
   70         1003.32 Authority of teacher; responsibility for control of
   71  students; district school board and principal duties.—Subject to
   72  law and to the rules of the district school board, each teacher
   73  or other member of the staff of any school shall have such
   74  authority for the control and discipline of students as may be
   75  assigned to him or her by the principal or the principal’s
   76  designated representative and shall keep good order in the
   77  classroom and in other places in which he or she is assigned to
   78  be in charge of students.
   79         (1) In accordance with this section and within the
   80  framework of the district school board’s code of student
   81  conduct, teachers and other instructional personnel shall have
   82  the authority to undertake any of the following actions in
   83  managing student behavior and ensuring the safety of all
   84  students in their classes and school and their opportunity to
   85  learn in an orderly and disciplined classroom:
   86         (k) Request the principal to administer Use corporal
   87  punishment according to school board policy and at least the
   88  following procedures, if a teacher feels that corporal
   89  punishment is necessary:
   90         1. The use of corporal punishment shall be approved in
   91  principle by the principal before it is used, but approval is
   92  not necessary for each specific instance in which it is used.
   93  The principal shall prepare guidelines for administering such
   94  punishment which identify the types of punishable offenses and,
   95  the conditions under which the punishment may shall be
   96  administered, and the specific personnel on the school staff
   97  authorized to administer the punishment.
   98         2. A teacher or principal may administer corporal
   99  punishment only in the presence of another adult who is informed
  100  beforehand, and in the student’s presence, of the reason for the
  101  punishment.
  102         3. A principal may not administer corporal punishment to a
  103  student unless the principal has notified the student’s parent
  104  in writing and received written consent from the student’s
  105  parent before the principal administers the punishment. However,
  106  a principal may not administer corporal punishment to a student
  107  with any disability as that term is defined in s. 1002.51(2).
  108         4. A teacher or principal who has administered corporal
  109  punishment shall, upon request, provide the student’s parent
  110  with a written explanation of the reason for the punishment and
  111  the name of the other adult who was present.
  112         Section 4. This act shall take effect July 1, 2020.