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AB-576 Pupil discipline: suspension and detention.(2017-2018)

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Date Published: 05/03/2017 09:00 PM
AB576:v97#DOCUMENT

Amended  IN  Assembly  May 03, 2017
Amended  IN  Assembly  March 22, 2017

CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE— 2017–2018 REGULAR SESSION

Assembly Bill No. 576


Introduced by Assembly Member Levine

February 14, 2017


An act to amend Sections 48906, 48911, 48911 and 48911.2 of the Education Code, relating to pupil discipline.


LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


AB 576, as amended, Levine. Pupil discipline: suspension and detention.

(1)Existing law requires, when a principal or other school official releases a minor pupil to a peace officer for the purpose of removing the minor from the school premises, that the principal or other school official take immediate steps to notify the parent, guardian, or responsible relative of the minor regarding the release of the minor to the officer, as specified.

This bill would additionally require, when a minor pupil has an interaction with a peace officer at school during which the pupil receives a citation, or is searched, detained, restrained, arrested, or questioned, that the principal or other official of the school take immediate steps to notify the parent, guardian, or responsible relative of that minor pupil about that interaction. To the extent that this provision would impose additional duties on school districts, it would constitute a state-mandated local program.

(2)

(1) Existing law authorizes the principal of the school, the principal’s designee, or the district superintendent of schools to suspend a pupil from the school for any of specified reasons for no more than 5 consecutive schooldays. Existing law requires the suspension by the principal, the principal’s designee, or the district superintendent of schools to be preceded by an informal conference conducted by the principal, the principal’s designee, or the district superintendent of schools between the pupil and, whenever practicable, the teacher, supervisor, or school employee who referred the pupil to the principal, the principal’s designee, or the district superintendent of schools.
This bill would require, before the informal conference described above, the pupil’s teacher, the principal, or the principal’s designee to make a reasonable effort to contact notify the pupil’s parent or guardian in person or by telephone that the informal conference is scheduled to occur. To the extent this bill would impose additional duties on school districts in regards to the nondiscretionary suspension of a pupil, the bill would impose a state-mandated local program.

(3)

(2) Existing law provides that, if the number of pupils suspended from school during the prior school year exceeded 30% of the school’s enrollment, the school should consider doing at least one of specified alternatives to suspension, including, among others, detention.
This bill would require, if a pupil has been issued detention, as defined, for a particular action or behavior pursuant to the provisions described above, before considering suspension for that pupil, the pupil’s teacher to make a reasonable effort to notify the parent or guardian of the pupil that the pupil has been issued detention and may be considered for suspension if the pupil repeats the action or behavior, except as specified.

(4)

(3) The California Constitution requires the state to reimburse local agencies and school districts for certain costs mandated by the state. Statutory provisions establish procedures for making that reimbursement.
This bill would provide that, if the Commission on State Mandates determines that the bill contains costs mandated by the state, reimbursement for those costs shall be made pursuant to the statutory provisions noted above.
Vote: MAJORITY   Appropriation: NO   Fiscal Committee: YES   Local Program: YES  

The people of the State of California do enact as follows:


SECTION 1.Section 48906 of the Education Code is amended to read:
48906.

(a)When a minor pupil has an interaction with a peace officer at school during which the pupil receives a citation, or is searched, detained, restrained, arrested, or questioned, the principal or other official of the school shall take immediate steps to notify the parent, guardian, or responsible relative of that minor pupil about that interaction.

(b)(1)When a principal or other school official releases a minor pupil to a peace officer for the purpose of removing the minor from the school premises, the principal or other school official shall take immediate steps to notify the parent, guardian, or responsible relative of the minor regarding the release of the minor to the officer, and regarding the place to which the minor is reportedly being taken, except when a minor has been taken into custody as a victim of suspected child abuse, as defined in Section 11165.6 of the Penal Code, or pursuant to Section 305 of the Welfare and Institutions Code. In those cases, the principal or other school official shall provide the peace officer with the address and telephone number of the minor’s parent or guardian. The peace officer shall take immediate steps to notify the parent, guardian, or responsible relative of the minor pupil that the minor is in custody and the place where he or she is being held.

(2)If the officer has a reasonable belief that the minor pupil would be endangered by a disclosure of the place where the minor is being held, or that the disclosure would cause the custody of the minor to be disturbed, the officer may refuse to disclose the place where the minor is being held for a period not to exceed 24 hours. The officer shall, however, inform the parent, guardian, or responsible relative whether the child requires and is receiving medical or other treatment. The juvenile court shall review any decision not to disclose the place where the minor pupil is being held at a subsequent detention hearing.

SEC. 2.SECTION 1.

 Section 48911 of the Education Code is amended to read:

48911.
 (a) The principal of the school, the principal’s designee, or the district superintendent of schools may suspend a pupil from the school for any of the reasons enumerated in Section 48900, and pursuant to Section 48900.5, for no more than five consecutive schooldays.
(b) (1) Suspension by the principal, the principal’s designee, or the district superintendent of schools shall be preceded by an informal conference conducted by the principal, the principal’s designee, or the district superintendent of schools between the pupil and, whenever practicable, the teacher, supervisor, or school employee who referred the pupil to the principal, the principal’s designee, or the district superintendent of schools.
(2) Before the informal conference, the pupil’s teacher, the principal, or the principal’s designee shall make a reasonable effort to contact notify the pupil’s parent or guardian in person or by telephone that the informal conference is scheduled to occur.
(3) At the conference, the pupil shall be informed of the reason for the disciplinary action and the evidence against him or her, and shall be given the opportunity to present his or her version and evidence in his or her defense.
(c) A principal, the principal’s designee, or the district superintendent of schools may suspend a pupil without affording the pupil an opportunity for a conference only if the principal, the principal’s designee, or the district superintendent of schools determines that an emergency situation exists. “Emergency situation,” as used in this article, means a situation determined by the principal, the principal’s designee, or the district superintendent of schools to constitute a clear and present danger to the life, safety, or health of pupils or school personnel. If a pupil is suspended without a conference before suspension, both the parent and the pupil shall be notified of the pupil’s right to a conference and the pupil’s right to return to school for the purpose of a conference. The conference shall be held within two schooldays, unless the pupil waives this right or is physically unable to attend for any reason, including, but not limited to, incarceration or hospitalization. The conference shall then be held as soon as the pupil is physically able to return to school for the conference.
(d) At the time of suspension, a school employee shall make a reasonable effort to contact the pupil’s parent or guardian in person or by telephone. If a pupil is suspended from school, the parent or guardian shall be notified in writing of the suspension.
(e) A school employee shall report the suspension of the pupil, including the cause for the suspension, to the governing board of the school district or to the district superintendent of schools in accordance with the regulations of the governing board of the school district.
(f) (1) The parent or guardian of a pupil shall respond without delay to a request from school officials to attend a conference regarding his or her child’s behavior.
(2) No penalties shall be imposed on a pupil for failure of the pupil’s parent or guardian to attend a conference with school officials. Reinstatement of the suspended pupil shall not be contingent upon attendance by the pupil’s parent or guardian at the conference.
(g) In a case where expulsion from a school or suspension for the balance of the semester from continuation school is being processed by the governing board of the school district, the district superintendent of schools or other person designated by the district superintendent of schools in writing may extend the suspension until the governing board of the school district has rendered a decision in the action. However, an extension may be granted only if the district superintendent of schools or the district superintendent’s designee has determined, following a meeting in which the pupil and the pupil’s parent or guardian are invited to participate, that the presence of the pupil at the school or in an alternative school placement would cause a danger to persons or property or a threat of disrupting the instructional process. If the pupil is a foster child, as defined in Section 48853.5, the district superintendent of schools or the district superintendent’s designee, including, but not limited to, the educational liaison for the school district, shall also invite the pupil’s attorney and an appropriate representative of the county child welfare agency to participate in the meeting. If the pupil or the pupil’s parent or guardian has requested a meeting to challenge the original suspension pursuant to Section 48914, the purpose of the meeting shall be to decide upon the extension of the suspension order under this section and may be held in conjunction with the initial meeting on the merits of the suspension.
(h) (1) For purposes of this section, a “principal’s designee” is one or more administrators at the schoolsite specifically designated by the principal, in writing, to assist with disciplinary procedures.
(2) In the event that there is not an administrator in addition to the principal at the schoolsite, a certificated person at the schoolsite may be specifically designated by the principal, in writing, as a “principal’s designee,” to assist with disciplinary procedures. The principal may designate only one person at a time as the principal’s primary designee for the school year.
(3) An additional person meeting the requirements of this subdivision may be designated by the principal, in writing, to act for purposes of this article when both the principal and the principal’s primary designee are absent from the schoolsite. The name of the person, and the names of any person or persons designated as “principal’s designee,” shall be on file in the principal’s office.
(i) This section is not an exception to, nor does it place any limitation on, Section 48903.

SEC. 3.SEC. 2.

 Section 48911.2 of the Education Code is amended to read:

48911.2.
 (a) If the number of pupils suspended from school during the prior school year exceeded 30 percent of the school’s enrollment, the school should consider doing at least one of the following:
(1) Implement the supervised suspension program described in Section 48911.1.
(2) Implement an alternative to the school’s off-campus suspension program that involves a progressive discipline approach that occurs during the schoolday on campus, using any of the following activities:
(A) Conferences between the school staff, parents, and pupils.
(B) Referral to the school counselor, psychologist, child welfare attendance personnel, or other school support service staff.
(C) Detention.
(D) Study teams, guidance teams, resource panel teams, or other assessment-related teams.
(b) At the end of the school year, the school may report to the district superintendent in charge of school support services, or to another comparable administrator if that position does not exist, on the rate of reduction in the school’s off-campus suspensions and the plan or activities used to comply with subdivision (a).
(c) It is the intent of the Legislature to encourage schools that choose to implement this section to examine alternatives to off-campus suspensions that lead to resolution of pupil misconduct without sending pupils off campus. Schools that use this section should not be precluded from suspending pupils to an off-campus site.
(d) (1) If a pupil has been issued detention for a particular action or behavior, before considering suspension for that pupil, the pupil’s teacher shall make a reasonable effort to notify the parent or guardian of the pupil that the pupil has been issued detention and may be considered for suspension if the pupil repeats the action or behavior.
(2) Paragraph (1) does not apply to a suspension when an emergency situation has been determined to exist pursuant to subdivision (c) of Section 48911.
(e) For purposes of this section, “detention” means any type of punishment in which a pupil is held outside of instructional time for the purpose of discipline.

SEC. 4.SEC. 3.

 If the Commission on State Mandates determines that this act contains costs mandated by the state, reimbursement to local agencies and school districts for those costs shall be made pursuant to Part 7 (commencing with Section 17500) of Division 4 of Title 2 of the Government Code.