KBS Reference Desk: Bullying Policies and Reporting SB 2050

Q:        Did the Legislature take any action relevant to cyberbullying and the increasing prevalence of social media in students’ lives? 

 A:        Yes. SB2050 amends Texas Education Code section 37.0832 to require a school district’s board to adopt a policy, including any necessary procedures, for prevention and mediation of bullying incidents, including cyberbullying, between students. Previously, the statute made adoption of a policy for bullying prevention and mediation optional.

Statistics are rising that indicate students who experience bullying are at increased risk of depression, anxiety, sleep difficulties, lower academic achievement, dropping out of school and suicide. As a result, the 87th Legislature amended Texas Education Code section 37.0832 to require a school district board of trustees to adopt a policy for prevention and mediation of bullying incidents, including cyberbullying, between students when the bullying interferes with a student’s educational opportunities or substantially disrupts orderly operations of a classroom, school, or school-sponsored or school-related activity.

Prior to this latest bill, the statute made adoption of a policy for bullying prevention and mediation optional. SB2050 also amends Texas Education Code section 48.009 by adding a subsection that requires Commissioner rules mandating each school district to annually report through Public Education Information Management System (PEIMS), the number of reported incidents of bullying that have occurred at each campus. The school district’s policy under Section 37.0832 must comply with minimum standards to be adopted by the Texas Education Agency. These standards, among other things, will require that each campus establish a committee to address bullying by focusing on prevention efforts and health and wellness initiatives and require students at each grade level to meet periodically for instruction on building relationships and preventing bullying, including cyberbullying.

SB2050 takes effect September 1, 2021. While TASB Update 118 is not expected until after initiation of the 2021-2022 school year, your district is wise to begin dialogue concerning preventive measures and to immediately institute mediation practices for all bullying incidents.

For specific questions or additional information regarding bullying policies and reports, please consult with your local school law attorney.

Related Posts

Recent Articles

KBS Reference Desk: On Call Employees over 4th of July Holiday
July 1, 2022
KBS Reference Desk: Employment of Students
June 24, 2022
KBS Reference Desk: TOMA Social Gatherings Conventions
June 17, 2022
KBS Reference Desk: Volunteers Under Guardian Plan
June 10, 2022
KBS Reference Desk: DOI and Certification
June 3, 2022
KBS Reference Desk: FML Leave Over the Summer
May 27, 2022
KBS Reference Desk: Decrease in Compensation
May 20, 2022
KBS Reference Desk: Participation in Graduation Ceremonies
May 13, 2022
KBS Reference Desk: Temporary Custodians of Record – TPIA
May 6, 2022
KBS Reference Desk: Driving Students to Polls
April 29, 2022
KBS Reference Desk: Authority to Create New Position
April 22, 2022
KBS Reference Desk: Booster Club Raffle
April 15, 2022
KBS Reference Desk: Returning a Teacher to Probationary Status
April 8, 2022
KBS Reference Desk: Termination of Probationary Contract While On Leave
April 1, 2022
KBS Reference Desk: Long COVID and Special Education Referrals
March 25, 2022
KBS Reference Desk: Pay During Weather Closure
March 18, 2022
KBS Reference Desk: Nepotism
March 11, 2022
KBS Reference Desk: New SBOE Rules on Contract Abandonment
March 4, 2022
KBS Reference Desk: Web Accessibility
February 25, 2022
KBS Reference Desk: Political Advocacy Prohibitions
February 18, 2022
KBS Reference Desk: Pay During Weather Closure
February 11, 2022
KBS Reference Desk: House Bill 2581 Procurement Updates
February 4, 2022
KBS Reference Desk: CDL Waivers for Bus Drivers
January 28, 2022
KBS Reference Desk: Interstate Travel Liability and Travel Forms Best Practices
January 21, 2022
KBS Reference Desk: Updated Stay at Home Periods
January 14, 2022