PA 02-119-sHB 5425

Select Committee on Children

Education Committee

Appropriations Committee


SUMMARY: This act requires all school boards to develop a policy (1) addressing bullying and (2) ensuring that time is available during each school day for students to recite the Pledge of Allegiance. The act states that it is not to be construed to require anyone to recite the pledge.

The act defines bullying as repeated, overt acts by one or more students on school grounds or at a school-sponsored activity that are intended to ridicule, humiliate, or intimidate another student.

Each district's bullying policies must:

1. permit anonymous reports by students of bullying and written reports by parents or guardians of suspected bullying,

2. require teachers and other school staff to notify school administrators of bullying they witness and students' reports they receive,

3. require school administrators to investigate parents' written reports and review students' anonymous reports,

4. require each school to maintain a publicly available list of the number of verified bullying acts that occurred there,

5. include an intervention strategy for school staff to deal with bullying,

6. provide for including language about bullying in student codes of conduct, and

7. require notice to parents or guardians of all students involved in a verified act of bullying. The notice must describe the school's response and any consequences that may result from further acts of bullying.

The policy must be developed for use starting February 1, 2003.

EFFECTIVE DATE: July 1, 2002 for the bullying policy; October 1, 2002 for the Pledge of Allegiance policy.