130th Ohio General Assembly
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H. B. No. 116  As Introduced
As Introduced

129th General Assembly
Regular Session
H. B. No. 116

Representative Barnes 

Cosponsors: Representatives Patmon, Fedor, Yuko, Letson, Antonio 

To amend sections 3313.666 and 3313.667 of the Revised Code to enact the School Day Security and Anti-Bullying Act to require age-appropriate instruction on and parental notification of public schools' policies prohibiting harassment, intimidation, or bullying.

Section 1. That sections 3313.666 and 3313.667 of the Revised Code be amended to read as follows:
Sec. 3313.666.  (A) As used in this section, "harassment, intimidation, or bullying" means either of the following:
(1) Any intentional written, verbal, or physical act that a student has exhibited toward another particular student more than once and the behavior both:
(a) Causes mental or physical harm to the other student;
(b) Is sufficiently severe, persistent, or pervasive that it creates an intimidating, threatening, or abusive educational environment for the other student.
(2) Violence within a dating relationship.
(B) The board of education of each city, local, exempted village, and joint vocational school district shall establish a policy prohibiting harassment, intimidation, or bullying. The policy shall be developed in consultation with parents, school employees, school volunteers, students, and community members. The policy shall include the following:
(1) A statement prohibiting harassment, intimidation, or bullying of any student on school property or at school-sponsored events;
(2) A definition of harassment, intimidation, or bullying that shall include the definition in division (A) of this section;
(3) A procedure for reporting prohibited incidents;
(4) A requirement that school personnel report prohibited incidents of which they are aware to the school principal or other administrator designated by the principal;
(5) A requirement that parents or guardians of any student involved in a prohibited incident be notified and, to the extent permitted by section 3319.321 of the Revised Code and the "Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974," 88 Stat. 571, 20 U.S.C. 1232q 1232g, as amended, have access to any written reports pertaining to the prohibited incident;
(6) A procedure for documenting any prohibited incident that is reported;
(7) A procedure for responding to and investigating any reported incident;
(8) A strategy for protecting a victim from additional harassment, intimidation, or bullying, and from retaliation following a report;
(9) A disciplinary procedure for any student guilty of harassment, intimidation, or bullying, which shall not infringe on any student's rights under the first amendment to the Constitution of the United States;
(10) A requirement that the district administration semiannually provide the president of the district board a written summary of all reported incidents and post the summary on its web site, if the district has a web site, to the extent permitted by section 3319.321 of the Revised Code and the "Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974," 88 Stat. 571, 20 U.S.C. 1232q 1232g, as amended.
(C) Each board's policy shall appear in any student handbooks, and in any of the publications that set forth the comprehensive rules, procedures, and standards of conduct for schools and students in the district. Information regarding the policy shall be incorporated into employee training materials.
(D) Each board shall require that twice in each school year each student enrolled in the district be provided with age-appropriate instruction on the board's policy, including a discussion of the consequences for violations of the policy. The first instruction shall be presented near the beginning of the school year and the second instruction shall be presented after the first day of January of that school year.
Each board also shall require that once each school year a written statement describing the policy and the consequences for violations of the policy be sent to each student's parent along with an acknowledgement of receipt of the statement to be signed by the parent and returned to the student's school. The statement may be sent with regular student report cards.
(E) A school district employee, student, or volunteer shall be individually immune from liability in a civil action for damages arising from reporting an incident in accordance with a policy adopted pursuant to this section if that person reports an incident of harassment, intimidation, or bullying promptly in good faith and in compliance with the procedures as specified in the policy.
(E)(F) Except as provided in division (D)(E) of this section, nothing in this section prohibits a victim from seeking redress under any other provision of the Revised Code or common law that may apply.
(F)(G) This section does not create a new cause of action or a substantive legal right for any person.
(G)(H) Not later than six months after the effective date of this amendment September 29, 2010, each board shall update the policy adopted under this section to include violence within a dating relationship.
Sec. 3313.667.  (A) Any school district may form bullying prevention task forces, programs, and other initiatives involving volunteers, parents, law enforcement, and community members.
(B) To the extent that state or federal funds are appropriated for these purposes, each school district shall:
(1) Provide provide training, workshops, or courses on the district's harassment, intimidation, or bullying policy adopted pursuant to section 3313.666 of the Revised Code to school employees and volunteers who have direct contact with students. Time spent by school employees in the training, workshops, or courses shall apply towards any state- or district-mandated continuing education requirements.
(2) Develop a process for educating students about the policy.
(C) This section does not create a new cause of action or a substantive legal right for any person.
Section 2. That existing sections 3313.666 and 3313.667 of the Revised Code are hereby repealed.
Section 3. This act shall be known as the "School Day Security and Anti-Bullying Act." The purpose of this act is to provide a positive school day for each student and a school environment where every student feels safe.
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