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August 7, 2019

Are your charter’s anti-bullying policy and student code of conduct ready for the new school year?

The 2019-2020 school year is right around the corner. There is no time like the present for Texas charter schools to ensure they are compliant with the Education Code and with TEA requirements. This blog focuses on two compliance components: a published anti-bullying policy and a written student code of conduct.

Anti-Bullying Policy

Tex. Educ. Code § 37.0832 requires each board of trustees of Texas school districts to adopt a bullying prevention and reporting procedure (or an anti-bullying policy) and to publish their anti-bullying policy on their website. Charter schools and their governing bodies are subject to this requirement under Tex. Educ. Code § 12.104(b)(2)(P).

If your charter has adopted an anti-bullying policy but has not published it online, make sure to fix this before the start of the school year. Likewise, if your charter has not adopted an anti-bullying policy, be sure to adopt and publish one online as soon as possible.

One method of complying with the statutory requirements for a published anti-bullying policy is publishing an anonymous or non-anonymous reporting form on your charter school websites (along with an explanation of prohibited conduct under the anti-bullying policy). Schools may also opt to include an anti-bullying policy within a parent-student handbook or student code of conduct.

Student Codes of Conduct

Tex. Educ. Code § 12.131 requires the governing bodies of charter schools to adopt a student code of conduct. These codes of conduct must outline prohibited behaviors and their consequences. Although the statute does not have precise requirements for notice or publishing, distributing a written policy to students and their parents provides clear guidance. TCSA encourages schools to publish this code on their websites for students and parents to reference.  

TCSA is happy to assist your charter in complying with these requirements. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact TCSA.

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