Section 16-28B-5

Model policy.

The department shall develop a model policy prohibiting bullying, violence, and threats of violence on or off of school property, on a school bus, or at any school-sponsored function. The model policy, at a minimum, shall contain all of the following components:

(1) A statement prohibiting bullying, violence, and threats of violence.

(2) Definitions of the terms bullying, as provided in subdivision (1) of Section 16-28B-3, intimidation, and threats of violence.

(3) A description of the behavior expected of each student.

(4) A series of graduated consequences for any student who commits an act of intimidation, bullying, violence, or threats of violence. Punishment shall conform with applicable federal and state disability, antidiscrimination, and education laws and school discipline policies.

(5) A procedure for reporting an act of intimidation, threat of suicide, bullying, violence, or threat of violence. An anonymous report may not be the basis for imposing formal disciplinary action against a student.

(6) A procedure for the prompt investigation of reports of serious violations and complaints, specifying that the principal, or his or her designee, is the person responsible for the investigation.

(7) A response procedure for a school to follow upon confirmation of an incident of intimidation, bullying, violence, or threats of violence.

(8) A statement prohibiting reprisal or retaliation against any person who reports an act of intimidation, violence, threat of violence, or bullying, including the consequences of and any appropriate remedial action that may be taken against a person who engages in such reprisal or retaliation.

(9) A statement of the consequences of and appropriate remedial action that may be taken against a person who has deliberately and recklessly falsely accused another.

(10) A procedure for publicizing local board policy through publication in the student handbook, including providing notice that the policy applies to behavior occurring off of school property and to participation in school-sponsored functions, whether the conduct occurs on or off school property, online, or electronically.

(11) A clearly defined procedure for students to use in reporting bullying, including, but not limited to, written reports on local board approved complaint forms and written reports of instances of bullying, intimidation, violence, and threats of violence based on the personal characteristics of a student. The complaint form may be served in person or by mail on the principal, or his or her designee, or his or her office. The procedures shall be made known and be readily available to each student, employee, and the parent or guardian of each student. It is the sole responsibility of the affected student, or the parent or guardian of the affected student, to report incidences of bullying to the principal, or his or her designee.

(12) A procedure for promulgating rules to implement this chapter, including the development of a model student complaint form. The department shall seek public input in developing and revising the model policy, model complaint form, and any other necessary forms.

(13) A procedure for the development of a nonexhaustive list of the specific personal characteristics of a student which may often lead to bullying. Based upon experience, a local board of education may add, but not remove, characteristics from the list. The additional characteristics or perceived characteristics that cause bullying shall be identified by the local board on a case-by-case basis and added to the local board policy. The list shall be included in the code of conduct policy of each local board and included in the student handbook.

(Act 2009-571, p. 1674, §5; Act 2018-472, §1.)