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Legislative Year: 2023 Change
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Bill Detail: HB23-1109

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Title School Policies And Student Conduct
Status Introduced In House - Assigned to Education (01/23/2023)
Bill Subjects
  • Education & School Finance (Pre & K-12)
House Sponsors S. Gonzales-Gutierrez (D)
J. Joseph (D)
Senate Sponsors F. Winter (D)
House Committee Education
Senate Committee
Date Introduced 01/23/2023
Summary

The bill requires a school district to implement additional
procedural safeguards for an expulsion hearing (hearing). A school
district is required to provide all records that the school district intends to
use as supporting evidence in a hearing to the student or the student's
parent, guardian, or legal custodian at least 5 business days prior to the
hearing. If a school district intends to present written statements or oral
testimony from witnesses during the hearing, the student and the student's
parent, guardian, or legal custodian must be notified at least 5 business
days prior to the hearing of the contents of the written statement or oral
testimony provided to the school district. The student and the student's
parent, guardian, or legal custodian have the right to cross-examine
adverse witnesses who provide a written statement or oral testimony to
the school district.
During the hearing, the school district has the burden of presenting
clear and convincing evidence to demonstrate that the student violated
state law and the school district's policy, and that excluding the student
from the learning environment through expulsion or denial of admission
is necessary. Following the hearing, the executive officer or designee
acting as a hearing officer is required to report findings of fact, findings
regarding mitigating factors, and recommendations.
Current law permits a student to be suspended, expelled, or denied
admission for behavior on or off school property that is detrimental to the
welfare or safety of other students or school personnel. The bill requires
a school district or enrolling school district to demonstrate that a student's
behavior off school grounds poses an imminent threat to other students
or school personnel by establishing a direct and substantial nexus between
the student's alleged conduct committed off school grounds and the risk
of physical harm to other students or school personnel. Behavior that
occurs off school grounds that results in delinquency or criminal charges
and is unrelated to a school-sponsored event is not automatic grounds for
suspension, expulsion, or denial of admission. For a hearing concerning
a student whose alleged conduct occurred off school grounds, the
executive officer or designee acting as a hearing officer is required to
report findings of fact that establish a direct and substantial nexus
between the student's behavior and the risk of physical harm to other
students and school personnel.
Current law allows a school district board of education (board) to
delegate its power to its executive officer or to a designee who serves as
a hearing officer to expel or deny admission to a student. The bill requires
the individual who serves as the board's hearing officer to agree to recusal
if a conflict of interest occurs that interferes with the individual's duty to
act as an impartial hearing officer. An executive officer, a designee, or
any individual acting as a hearing officer is also required to participate in
an annual training on state and federal school discipline laws.

Committee Reports
with Amendments
None
Full Text
Full Text of Bill (pdf) (most recent)
Fiscal Notes Fiscal Notes (02/03/2023) (most recent)  
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