S.B. 179 - The New Anti-Bullying Bill
"David's Law" - S.B. 179 - is one of the new laws that will have a major impact on the day-to-day operation of your school. Here are several things you need to know about this new law, which went into effect on September 1, 2017.
- It makes it clear that bullying does not have to involve a pattern of repeated behavior. "A single significant act" might be sufficient to meet the definition of "bullying."
- Our definition of bullying has always required that there be an effort on the target. That effect could be physical harm, or the threat of it; or damage to property; or an "intimidating. threatening, or abusive educational environment." The new law adds to this, by stating that it is "bullying" if the behavior "materially and substantially disrupts the educational process or the orderly operation of a classroom or school; or infringes on the rights of the victim at school."
- Cyberbullying off campus is expressly included in the definition of bullying if it "interferes with a student's educational opportunities" or "substantially disrupts the orderly operation of a classroom, school, or school-sponsored or school-related activity."
- Notice of alleged bullying must be given to the parent on or before the third business day after the incident is reported. The alleged bully's parent is to be notified within a "reasonable time."