Safety Law News for March 24, 2017

  • In Minnesota, Ramsey County officials continue to wrestle with its efforts to implement a restorative justice policy in the schools.  A task force convened to study school safety and issued a report with two conflicting trends. Students of color continue to be disciplined in disproportionate numbers.  Student-on-staff violence has doubled in just one year – between 2014 and 2015.
  • In Alabama, the School Security and Student Safety Task Force released its final report and findings, which included a number of recommendations.  One recommendation was to amend Section 12-15-217, Code of Alabama 1975, to provide for the sharing of information between juvenile probation officers and school districts relating to delinquent students that may pose a threat to safety.

Safety Law News for March 14, 2017

  • In California, the California Court of Appeal ruled that new state law allows juvenile courts to seal all juvenile court records, including school records, when the child completes a diversion program.  The new restorative justice policy, [Welfare and Institutions Code §786] is designed the give the court discretion to determine whether sealing a child’s school records that refer to a juvenile court proceedings will promote the child’s reentry and rehabilitation. [In re A.S.]
  • In Florida, the District Court of Appeal ruled that the trial court should have granted a student’s motion for dismissal because the State failed to prove that a BB gun found in his book-bag was a deadly weapon within the meaning of state law.  The gun was not loaded and no BBs were found. [C.W. v. State].
  • In Louisiana, the State Court of Appeals rejected personal injury claims against the school board brought by a high school teacher who was assaulted by a student when she was six weeks pregnant. The court ruled that she could not pursue tort recovery for injuries and was limited to workers’ compensation, even though the student had an extensive history of disciplinary issues. [Field v. Lafayette Parish School Board].

Safety Law News for March 9, 2017

  • In Alabama, the Colbert County Schools Superintendent is working with the sheriff to get school resource officers in the schools.  “It’s imperative that we move quickly and swiftly to get these resource officers in place so that our kids as well as the faculty and staff will feel safe,” said Gale Satchel, Colbert County Schools Superintendent.
  • In Massachusetts, the Fitchburg School Committee unanimously approved a policy that will allow dogs to sniff for drugs in the district’s middle and high schools.

Safety Law News for March 3, 2017

  • In South Carolina, a bill that would review South Carolina’s juvenile justice laws was approved by a subcommittee of the legislature. House Bill 3055 authorizes a new legislative committee to make recommendations to the General Assembly on ways to divert more juveniles from the criminal justice system.
  • In Colorado, officials in Larimer County approved the position of a diversion program coordinator who would be responsible for two juvenile diversion programs. The programs would work closely with school resource officers in diverting lower-level incidents within the school system away from the juvenile justice system.

Safety Law News for February 28, 2017

  • In Illinois, DeKalb County officials are working with Sycamore educators and students to train staff and students on self-defense procedures as part of a national program known as ALICE. The program is designed to respond to armed attackers using procedures such as barricading doors and attacking intruders.

Safety Law News for February 16, 2017

  • In Minnesota, educators in the St. Cloud and Sauk Rapids-Rice school districts have put additional resources on identifying students who are disruptive by creating individual plans to help them and monitoring their mental health and social and emotional learning. Teachers have noticed the change. It has been a calmer year.
  • In Washington State, arrests in Spokane Public Schools are down 88 percent from last year as educators have turned to a new disciplinary policy based on restorative justice practices.
  • In Illinois, Mundelein High School officials are teaming up with the Mundelein Police Department to put school resource officers in the classroom – as teachers. The goal is to have the officers teach on the law while making connections with the students.