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SB-607 Pupil discipline: suspensions and expulsions: willful defiance: suspension by teacher.(2017-2018)

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Date Published: 02/17/2017 09:00 PM
SB607:v99#DOCUMENT


CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE— 2017–2018 REGULAR SESSION

Senate Bill No. 607


Introduced by Senator Skinner
(Coauthor: Assembly Member Reyes)

February 17, 2017


An act to amend Sections 32261, 32283, 46600, 48900, 48900.1, 48900.9, 48915, 48918, and 48918.5 of, and to repeal and add Section 48910 to, the Education Code, relating to pupil discipline.


LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


SB 607, as introduced, Skinner. Pupil discipline: suspensions and expulsions: willful defiance: suspension by teacher.
(1) Existing law prohibits a pupil from being suspended from school or recommended for expulsion, unless the superintendent of the school district or the principal of the school in which the pupil is enrolled determines that the pupil has committed a specified act, including, among other acts, disrupting school activities or otherwise willfully defying the valid authority of supervisors, teachers, administrators, school officials, or other school personnel engaged in the performance of their duties.
This bill would delete the provision relating to disrupting school activities or otherwise willfully defying the valid authority of school personnel engaged in the performance of their duties as an act for which a pupil may be suspended from school or recommended for expulsion.
(2) Existing law authorizes a teacher to suspend any pupil from class, for specified acts, for the day of the suspension and the day following, as provided. Existing law authorizes a teacher to refer a pupil, for specified acts, to the principal or the designee of the principal for consideration of a suspension from the school.
This bill would repeal those provisions. The bill would instead authorize a teacher, when necessary, to remove a pupil from his or her classroom and would require the teacher to immediately send the pupil to the principal of the school, or a designee of the principal, who shall take appropriate action, as provided. The bill would authorize a teacher, when necessary, to refer a pupil to the principal, or a designee of the principal, for suspension from the school for specified acts.
The bill would require a teacher who refers a pupil for suspension, as soon as possible after the referral, to ask the pupil’s parent or guardian to attend a group conference to discuss with the teacher the reasons for the referral and seek solutions to the problem. To the extent the bill would impose additional duties on school districts, the bill would impose a state-mandated local program.
(3) This bill would also update cross-references and make conforming changes.
(4) 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 32261 of the Education Code is amended to read:

32261.
 (a) The Legislature hereby recognizes that all pupils enrolled in the state public schools have the inalienable right to attend classes on school campuses that are safe, secure, and peaceful. The Legislature also recognizes that pupils cannot fully benefit from an educational program unless they attend school on a regular basis. In addition, the Legislature further recognizes that school crime, vandalism, truancy, and excessive absenteeism are significant problems on far too many school campuses in the state.
(b) The Legislature hereby finds and declares that the establishment of an interagency coordination system is the most efficient and long-lasting means of resolving school and community problems of truancy and crime, including vandalism, drug and alcohol abuse, gang membership, gang violence, and hate crimes.
(c) It is the intent of the Legislature in enacting this chapter to support California public schools as they develop their mandated comprehensive safety plans that are the result of a systematic planning process, that include strategies aimed at the prevention of, and education about, potential incidents involving crime and violence on school campuses, and that address the safety concerns of local law enforcement agencies, community leaders, parents, pupils, teachers, school administrators, school police, and other school employees interested in the prevention of school crime and violence.
(d) It is the intent of the Legislature in enacting this chapter to encourage school districts, county offices of education, law enforcement agencies, and agencies serving youth to develop and implement interagency strategies, in-service training programs, and activities that will improve school attendance and reduce school crime and violence, including vandalism, drug and alcohol abuse, gang membership, gang violence, hate crimes, bullying, including bullying committed personally or by means of an electronic act, teen relationship violence, and discrimination and harassment, including, but not limited to, sexual harassment.
(e) It is the intent of the Legislature in enacting this chapter that the School/Law Enforcement Partnership shall not duplicate any existing gang or drug and alcohol abuse program currently provided for schools.
(f) As used in this chapter, “bullying” has the same meaning as set forth in subdivision (r) (q) of Section 48900.
(g) As used in this chapter, “electronic act” has the same meaning as set forth in subdivision (r) (q) of Section 48900.

SEC. 2.

 Section 32283 of the Education Code is amended to read:

32283.
 The Department of Justice and the State Department of Education, in accordance with Section 32262, shall contract with one or more professional trainers to coordinate statewide workshops for school districts, county offices of education, and schoolsite personnel, and in particular school principals, to assist them in the development of their respective school safety and crisis response plans, and provide training in the prevention of bullying as defined in subdivision (r) (q) of Section 48900. The Department of Justice and the State Department of Education shall work in cooperation with regard to the workshops coordinated and presented pursuant to the contracts. Implementation of this section shall be contingent upon the availability of funds in the annual Budget Act.

SEC. 3.

 Section 46600 of the Education Code is amended to read:

46600.
 (a) (1) The governing boards of two or more school districts may enter into an agreement, for a term not to exceed five school years, for the interdistrict attendance of pupils who are residents of the school districts. The agreement may provide for the admission to a school district other than the school district of residence of a pupil who requests a permit to attend a school district that is a party to the agreement and that maintains schools and classes in kindergarten or any of grades 1 to 12, inclusive, to which the pupil requests admission. Once a pupil in kindergarten or any of grades 1 to 12, inclusive, is enrolled in a school pursuant to this chapter, the pupil shall not have to reapply for an interdistrict transfer, and the governing board of the school district of enrollment shall allow the pupil to continue to attend the school in which he or she is enrolled, except as specified in paragraphs (2) and (4).
(2) The agreement shall stipulate the terms and conditions under which interdistrict attendance shall be permitted or denied. The agreement may contain standards for reapplication agreed to by the school district of residence and the school district of enrollment that differ from the requirements prescribed by paragraph (1). The agreement may stipulate terms and conditions established by the school district of residence and the school district of enrollment under which the permit may be revoked.
(3) The supervisor of attendance of the school district of residence shall issue an individual permit verifying the school district’s approval, pursuant to policies of the governing board of the school district and terms of the agreement for the transfer. A permit shall be valid upon concurring endorsement by the designee of the governing board of the school district of proposed enrollment. The stipulation of the terms and conditions under which the permit may be revoked is the responsibility of the school district of enrollment.
(4) Notwithstanding paragraph (2), a school district of residence or school district of enrollment shall not rescind existing transfer permits for pupils entering grade 11 or 12 in the subsequent school year.
(b) A pupil who has been determined by personnel of either the school district of residence or the school district of proposed enrollment to have been the victim of an act of bullying, as defined in subdivision (r) (q) of Section 48900, committed by a pupil of the school district of residence shall, at the request of the person having legal custody of the pupil, be given priority for interdistrict attendance under any existing interdistrict attendance agreement or, in the absence of an agreement, be given additional consideration for the creation of an interdistrict attendance agreement.
(c) In addition to the requirements of subdivision (e) of Section 48915.1, and regardless of whether an agreement exists or a permit is issued pursuant to this section, any school district may admit a pupil expelled from another school district in which the pupil continues to reside.
(d) (1) Notwithstanding any other law, and regardless of whether an agreement exists or a permit is issued pursuant to this section, a school district of residence shall not prohibit the transfer of a pupil who is a child of an active military duty parent to a school district of proposed enrollment if the school district of proposed enrollment approves the application for transfer.
(2) (A) For purposes of this subdivision, “active military duty parent” means a parent with full-time military duty status in the active uniformed service of the United States, including members of the National Guard and the State Military Reserve on active duty orders pursuant to Chapter 1209 (commencing with Section 12301) and Chapter 1211 (commencing with Section 12401) of Part II of Subtitle E of Title 10 of the United States Code.
(B) For purposes of this subdivision, “parent” means the natural or adoptive parent or guardian of a dependent child.

SEC. 4.

 Section 48900 of the Education Code is amended to read:

48900.
 A pupil shall not be suspended from school or recommended for expulsion, unless the superintendent of the school district or the principal of the school in which the pupil is enrolled determines that the pupil has committed an act as defined pursuant to any of subdivisions (a) to (r), (q), inclusive:
(a) (1) Caused, attempted to cause, or threatened to cause physical injury to another person.
(2) Willfully used force or violence upon the person of another, except in self-defense.
(b) Possessed, sold, or otherwise furnished a firearm, knife, explosive, or other dangerous object, unless, in the case of possession of an object of this type, the pupil had obtained written permission to possess the item from a certificated school employee, which is concurred in by the principal or the designee of the principal.
(c) Unlawfully possessed, used, sold, or otherwise furnished, or been under the influence of, a controlled substance listed in Chapter 2 (commencing with Section 11053) of Division 10 of the Health and Safety Code, an alcoholic beverage, or an intoxicant of any kind.
(d) Unlawfully offered, arranged, or negotiated to sell a controlled substance listed in Chapter 2 (commencing with Section 11053) of Division 10 of the Health and Safety Code, an alcoholic beverage, or an intoxicant of any kind, and either sold, delivered, or otherwise furnished to a person another liquid, substance, or material and represented the liquid, substance, or material as a controlled substance, alcoholic beverage, or intoxicant.
(e) Committed or attempted to commit robbery or extortion.
(f) Caused or attempted to cause damage to school property or private property.
(g) Stole or attempted to steal school property or private property.
(h) Possessed or used tobacco, or products containing tobacco or nicotine products, including, but not limited to, cigarettes, cigars, miniature cigars, clove cigarettes, smokeless tobacco, snuff, chew packets, and betel. However, this section does not prohibit the use or possession by a pupil of his or her own prescription products.
(i) Committed an obscene act or engaged in habitual profanity or vulgarity.
(j) Unlawfully possessed or unlawfully offered, arranged, or negotiated to sell drug paraphernalia, as defined in Section 11014.5 of the Health and Safety Code.

(k)(1)Disrupted school activities or otherwise willfully defied the valid authority of supervisors, teachers, administrators, school officials, or other school personnel engaged in the performance of their duties.

(2)Except as provided in Section 48910, a pupil enrolled in kindergarten or any of grades 1 to 3, inclusive, shall not be suspended for any of the acts enumerated in this subdivision, and this subdivision shall not constitute grounds for a pupil enrolled in kindergarten or any of grades 1 to 12, inclusive, to be recommended for expulsion. This paragraph shall become inoperative on July 1, 2018, unless a later enacted statute that becomes operative before July 1, 2018, deletes or extends that date.

(l)

(k) Knowingly received stolen school property or private property.

(m)

(l) Possessed an imitation firearm. As used in this section, “imitation firearm” means a replica of a firearm that is so substantially similar in physical properties to an existing firearm as to lead a reasonable person to conclude that the replica is a firearm.

(n)

(m) Committed or attempted to commit a sexual assault as defined in Section 261, 266c, 286, 288, 288a, or 289 of the Penal Code or committed a sexual battery as defined in Section 243.4 of the Penal Code.

(o)

(n) Harassed, threatened, or intimidated a pupil who is a complaining witness or a witness in a school disciplinary proceeding for purposes of either preventing that pupil from being a witness or retaliating against that pupil for being a witness, or both.

(p)

(o) Unlawfully offered, arranged to sell, negotiated to sell, or sold the prescription drug Soma.

(q)

(p) Engaged in, or attempted to engage in, hazing. For purposes of this subdivision, “hazing” means a method of initiation or preinitiation into a pupil organization or body, whether or not the organization or body is officially recognized by an educational institution, that is likely to cause serious bodily injury or personal degradation or disgrace resulting in physical or mental harm to a former, current, or prospective pupil. For purposes of this subdivision, “hazing” does not include athletic events or school-sanctioned events.

(r)

(q) Engaged in an act of bullying. For purposes of this subdivision, the following terms have the following meanings:
(1)  “Bullying” means any severe or pervasive physical or verbal act or conduct, including communications made in writing or by means of an electronic act, and including one or more acts committed by a pupil or group of pupils as defined in Section 48900.2, 48900.3, or 48900.4, directed toward one or more pupils that has or can be reasonably predicted to have the effect of one or more of the following:
(A) Placing a reasonable pupil or pupils in fear of harm to that pupil’s or those pupils’ person or property.
(B) Causing a reasonable pupil to experience a substantially detrimental effect on his or her physical or mental health.
(C) Causing a reasonable pupil to experience substantial interference with his or her academic performance.
(D) Causing a reasonable pupil to experience substantial interference with his or her ability to participate in or benefit from the services, activities, or privileges provided by a school.
(2) (A) “Electronic act” means the creation or transmission originated on or off the schoolsite, by means of an electronic device, including, but not limited to, a telephone, wireless telephone, or other wireless communication device, computer, or pager, of a communication, including, but not limited to, any of the following:
(i) A message, text, sound, video, or image.
(ii) A post on a social network Internet Web site, including, but not limited to:
(I) Posting to or creating a burn page. “Burn page” means an Internet Web site created for the purpose of having one or more of the effects listed in paragraph (1).
(II) Creating a credible impersonation of another actual pupil for the purpose of having one or more of the effects listed in paragraph (1). “Credible impersonation” means to knowingly and without consent impersonate a pupil for the purpose of bullying the pupil and such that another pupil would reasonably believe, or has reasonably believed, that the pupil was or is the pupil who was impersonated.
(III) Creating a false profile for the purpose of having one or more of the effects listed in paragraph (1). “False profile” means a profile of a fictitious pupil or a profile using the likeness or attributes of an actual pupil other than the pupil who created the false profile.
(iii) An act of cyber sexual bullying.
(I) For purposes of this clause, “cyber sexual bullying” means the dissemination of, or the solicitation or incitement to disseminate, a photograph or other visual recording by a pupil to another pupil or to school personnel by means of an electronic act that has or can be reasonably predicted to have one or more of the effects described in subparagraphs (A) to (D), inclusive, of paragraph (1). A photograph or other visual recording, as described above, shall include the depiction of a nude, semi-nude, or sexually explicit photograph or other visual recording of a minor where the minor is identifiable from the photograph, visual recording, or other electronic act.
(II) For purposes of this clause, “cyber sexual bullying” does not include a depiction, portrayal, or image that has any serious literary, artistic, educational, political, or scientific value or that involves athletic events or school-sanctioned activities.
(B) Notwithstanding paragraph (1) and subparagraph (A), an electronic act shall not constitute pervasive conduct solely on the basis that it has been transmitted on the Internet or is currently posted on the Internet.
(3) “Reasonable pupil” means a pupil, including, but not limited to, an exceptional needs pupil, who exercises average care, skill, and judgment in conduct for a person of his or her age, or for a person of his or her age with his or her exceptional needs.

(s)

(r) A pupil shall not be suspended or expelled for any of the acts enumerated in this section unless the act is related to a school activity or school attendance occurring within a school under the jurisdiction of the superintendent of the school district or principal or occurring within any other school district. A pupil may be suspended or expelled for acts that are enumerated in this section and related to a school activity or school attendance that occur at any time, including, but not limited to, any of the following:
(1) While on school grounds.
(2) While going to or coming from school.
(3) During the lunch period whether on or off the campus.
(4) During, or while going to or coming from, a school-sponsored activity.

(t)

(s) A pupil who aids or abets, as defined in Section 31 of the Penal Code, the infliction or attempted infliction of physical injury to another person may be subject to suspension, but not expulsion, pursuant to this section, except that a pupil who has been adjudged by a juvenile court to have committed, as an aider and abettor, a crime of physical violence in which the victim suffered great bodily injury or serious bodily injury shall be subject to discipline pursuant to subdivision (a).

(u)

(t) As used in this section, “school property” includes, but is not limited to, electronic files and databases.

(v)

(u) For a pupil subject to discipline under this section, a superintendent of the school district or principal may use his or her discretion is encouraged to provide alternatives to suspension or expulsion expulsion, using a research-based framework with strategies that improve behavioral and academic outcomes, that are age appropriate and designed to address and correct the pupil’s specific misbehavior as specified in Section 48900.5.

(w)

(v) (1) It is the intent of the Legislature that alternatives to suspension or expulsion be imposed against a pupil who is truant, tardy, or otherwise absent from school activities.
(2) It is further the intent of the Legislature that the department’s Multi-Tiered System of Supports, which includes restorative justice practices, trauma-informed practices, social and emotional learning, and schoolwide positive behavior interventions and support, may be used to help pupils gain critical social and emotional skills, receive support to help transform trauma-related responses, understand the impact of their actions, and develop meaningful methods for repairing harm to the school community.

SEC. 5.

 Section 48900.1 of the Education Code is amended to read:

48900.1.
 (a) The governing board of each school district may adopt a policy authorizing teachers to require the parent or guardian of a pupil who has been suspended by a teacher pursuant to Section 48910 for reasons specified in subdivision (i) or (k) of Section 48900, to attend a portion of a schoolday in the classroom of his or her child or ward. The policy shall take into account reasonable factors that may prevent compliance with a notice to attend. The attendance of the parent or guardian shall be limited to the class from which the pupil was suspended.
(b) (1) The policy shall be adopted pursuant to the procedures set forth in Sections 35291 and 35291.5. Parents and guardians shall be notified of this policy prior to before its implementation. A teacher shall apply any policy adopted pursuant to this section uniformly to all pupils within the classroom.

The

(2) The adopted policy shall include the procedures that the school district will follow to accomplish the following:

(1)

(A) Ensure that parents or guardians who attend school for the purposes of this section meet with the school administrator or his or her designee after completing the classroom visitation and before leaving the schoolsite.

(2)

(B) Contact parents or guardians who do not respond to the request to attend school pursuant to this section.
(c) If a teacher imposes the procedure pursuant to subdivision (a), the principal shall send a written notice to the parent or guardian stating that attendance by the parent or guardian is pursuant to law. This section shall apply only to a parent or guardian who is actually living with the pupil.
(d) A parent or guardian who has received a written notice pursuant to subdivision (c) shall attend class as specified in the written notice. The notice may specify that the attendance of the parent or guardian be on the day the pupil is scheduled to return to class, or within a reasonable period of time thereafter, as established by the policy of the board adopted pursuant to subdivision (a).

SEC. 6.

 Section 48900.9 of the Education Code is amended to read:

48900.9.
 (a) The superintendent of a school district, the principal of a school, or the principal’s designee may refer a victim of, witness to, or other pupil affected by, an act of bullying, as defined in paragraph (1) of subdivision (r) (q) of Section 48900, committed on or after January 1, 2015, to the school counselor, school psychologist, social worker, child welfare attendance personnel, school nurse, or other school support service personnel for case management, counseling, and participation in a restorative justice program, as appropriate.
(b) A pupil who has engaged in an act of bullying, as defined in paragraph (1) of subdivision (r) (q) of Section 48900, may also be referred to the school counselor, school psychologist, social worker, child welfare attendance personnel, or other school support service personnel for case management and counseling, or for participation in a restorative justice program, pursuant to Section 48900.5.

SEC. 7.

 Section 48910 of the Education Code is repealed.
48910.

(a)A teacher may suspend any pupil from class, for any of the acts enumerated in Section 48900, for the day of the suspension and the day following. The teacher shall immediately report the suspension to the principal of the school and send the pupil to the principal or the designee of the principal for appropriate action. If that action requires the continued presence of the pupil at the schoolsite, the pupil shall be under appropriate supervision, as defined in policies and related regulations adopted by the governing board of the school district. As soon as possible, the teacher shall ask the parent or guardian of the pupil to attend a parent-teacher conference regarding the suspension. If practicable, a school counselor or a school psychologist may attend the conference. A school administrator shall attend the conference if the teacher or the parent or guardian so requests. The pupil shall not be returned to the class from which he or she was suspended, during the period of the suspension, without the concurrence of the teacher of the class and the principal.

(b)A pupil suspended from a class shall not be placed in another regular class during the period of suspension. However, if the pupil is assigned to more than one class per day this subdivision shall apply only to other regular classes scheduled at the same time as the class from which the pupil was suspended.

(c)A teacher may also refer a pupil, for any of the acts enumerated in Section 48900, to the principal or the designee of the principal for consideration of a suspension from the school.

SEC. 8.

 Section 48910 is added to the Education Code, to read:

48910.
 (a) (1) When necessary, a teacher may remove a pupil from his or her classroom. The teacher shall immediately send the pupil to the principal of the school, or a designee of the principal, who shall take appropriate action, including other means of correction to bring about proper conduct as described in Section 48900.5. The pupil shall be under appropriate supervision, as defined in policies and related regulations adopted by the governing board of the school district.
(2) For purposes of this section, a designee of the principal may include an assistant principal, a school nurse, a restorative justice coordinator, a school counselor, a school psychologist, or other professional staff.
(b) When necessary, a teacher may refer a pupil to the principal, or a designee of the principal, for suspension from the school for any of the acts enumerated in Section 48900.
(c) When a teacher refers a pupil for suspension, as soon as possible after the referral, the teacher shall ask the pupil’s parent or guardian to attend a group conference to discuss with the teacher the reasons for the referral and seek solutions to the problem. If practical and appropriate, the pupil, a school administrator, and others with knowledge of the situation giving rise to the referral shall attend the conference.

SEC. 9.

 Section 48915 of the Education Code is amended to read:

48915.
 (a) (1) Except as provided in subdivisions (c) and (e), the principal or the superintendent of schools shall recommend the expulsion of a pupil for any of the following acts committed at school or at a school activity off school grounds, unless the principal or superintendent determines that expulsion should not be recommended under the circumstances or that an alternative means of correction would address the conduct:
(A) Causing serious physical injury to another person, except in self-defense.
(B) Possession of any knife or other dangerous object of no reasonable use to the pupil.
(C) Unlawful possession of any controlled substance listed in Chapter 2 (commencing with Section 11053) of Division 10 of the Health and Safety Code, except for either of the following:
(i) The first offense for the possession of not more than one avoirdupois ounce of marijuana, other than concentrated cannabis.
(ii) The possession of over-the-counter medication for use by the pupil for medical purposes or medication prescribed for the pupil by a physician.
(D) Robbery or extortion.
(E) Assault or battery, as defined in Sections 240 and 242 of the Penal Code, upon any school employee.
(2) If the principal or the superintendent of schools makes a determination as described in paragraph (1), he or she is encouraged to do so as quickly as possible to ensure that the pupil does not lose instructional time.
(b) Upon recommendation by the principal or the superintendent of schools, or by a hearing officer or administrative panel appointed pursuant to subdivision (d) of Section 48918, the governing board of a school district may order a pupil expelled upon finding that the pupil committed an act listed in paragraph (1) of subdivision (a) or in subdivision (a), (b), (c), (d), or (e) of Section 48900. A decision to expel a pupil for any of those acts shall be based on a finding of one or both of the following:
(1) Other means of correction are not feasible or have repeatedly failed to bring about proper conduct.
(2) Due to the nature of the act, the presence of the pupil causes a continuing danger to the physical safety of the pupil or others.
(c) The principal or superintendent of schools shall immediately suspend, pursuant to Section 48911, and shall recommend expulsion of a pupil that he or she determines has committed any of the following acts at school or at a school activity off school grounds:
(1) Possessing, selling, or otherwise furnishing a firearm. This subdivision does not apply to an act of possessing a firearm if the pupil had obtained prior written permission to possess the firearm from a certificated school employee, which is concurred in by the principal or the designee of the principal. This subdivision applies to an act of possessing a firearm only if the possession is verified by an employee of a school district. The act of possessing an imitation firearm, as defined in subdivision (m) (l) of Section 48900, is not an offense for which suspension or expulsion is mandatory pursuant to this subdivision and subdivision (d), but it is an offense for which suspension, or expulsion pursuant to subdivision (e), may be imposed.
(2) Brandishing a knife at another person.
(3) Unlawfully selling a controlled substance listed in Chapter 2 (commencing with Section 11053) of Division 10 of the Health and Safety Code.
(4) Committing or attempting to commit a sexual assault as defined in subdivision (n) (m) of Section 48900 or committing a sexual battery as defined in subdivision (n) (m) of Section 48900.
(5) Possession of an explosive.
(d) The governing board of a school district shall order a pupil expelled upon finding that the pupil committed an act listed in subdivision (c), and shall refer that pupil to a program of study that meets all of the following conditions:
(1) Is appropriately prepared to accommodate pupils who exhibit discipline problems.
(2) Is not provided at a comprehensive middle, junior, or senior high school, or at any elementary school.
(3) Is not housed at the schoolsite attended by the pupil at the time of suspension.
(e) Upon recommendation by the principal or the superintendent of schools, or by a hearing officer or administrative panel appointed pursuant to subdivision (d) of Section 48918, the governing board of a school district may order a pupil expelled upon finding that the pupil, at school or at a school activity off of school grounds violated subdivision (f), (g), (h), (i), (j), (k), (l), or (m) or (l) of Section 48900, or Section 48900.2, 48900.3, or 48900.4, and either of the following:
(1) That other means of correction are not feasible or have repeatedly failed to bring about proper conduct.
(2) That due to the nature of the violation, the presence of the pupil causes a continuing danger to the physical safety of the pupil or others.
(f) The governing board of a school district shall refer a pupil who has been expelled pursuant to subdivision (b) or (e) to a program of study that meets all of the conditions specified in subdivision (d). Notwithstanding this subdivision, with respect to a pupil expelled pursuant to subdivision (e), if the county superintendent of schools certifies that an alternative program of study is not available at a site away from a comprehensive middle, junior, or senior high school, or an elementary school, and that the only option for placement is at another comprehensive middle, junior, or senior high school, or another elementary school, the pupil may be referred to a program of study that is provided at a comprehensive middle, junior, or senior high school, or at an elementary school.
(g) As used in this section, “knife” means any dirk, dagger, or other weapon with a fixed, sharpened blade fitted primarily for stabbing, a weapon with a blade fitted primarily for stabbing, a weapon with a blade longer than 31/2 inches, a folding knife with a blade that locks into place, or a razor with an unguarded blade.
(h) As used in this section, the term “explosive” means “destructive device” as described in Section 921 of Title 18 of the United States Code.

SEC. 10.

 Section 48918 of the Education Code is amended to read:

48918.
 The governing board of each school district shall establish rules and regulations governing procedures for the expulsion of pupils. These procedures shall include, but are not necessarily limited to, all of the following:
(a) (1) The pupil shall be entitled to a hearing to determine whether the pupil should be expelled. An expulsion hearing shall be held within 30 schooldays after the date the principal or the superintendent of schools determines that the pupil has committed any of the acts enumerated in Section 48900, unless the pupil requests, in writing, that the hearing be postponed. The adopted rules and regulations shall specify that the pupil is entitled to at least one postponement of an expulsion hearing, for a period of not more than 30 calendar days. Any additional postponement may be granted at the discretion of the governing board of the school district.
(2) Within 10 schooldays after the conclusion of the hearing, the governing board of the school district shall decide whether to expel the pupil, unless the pupil requests in writing that the decision be postponed. If the hearing is held by a hearing officer or an administrative panel, or if the governing board of the school district does not meet on a weekly basis, the governing board of the school district shall decide whether to expel the pupil within 40 schooldays after the date of the pupil’s removal from his or her school of attendance for the incident for which the recommendation for expulsion is made by the principal or the superintendent of schools, unless the pupil requests in writing that the decision be postponed.
(3) If compliance by the governing board of the school district with the time requirements for the conducting of an expulsion hearing under this subdivision is impracticable during the regular school year, the superintendent of schools or the superintendent’s designee may, for good cause, extend the time period for the holding of the expulsion hearing for an additional five schooldays. If compliance by the governing board of the school district with the time requirements for the conducting of an expulsion hearing under this subdivision is impractical due to a summer recess of governing board meetings of more than two weeks, the days during the recess period shall not be counted as schooldays in meeting the time requirements. The days not counted as schooldays in meeting the time requirements for an expulsion hearing because of a summer recess of governing board meetings shall not exceed 20 schooldays, as defined in subdivision (c) of Section 48925, and unless the pupil requests in writing that the expulsion hearing be postponed, the hearing shall be held not later than 20 calendar days before the first day of school for the school year. Reasons for the extension of the time for the hearing shall be included as a part of the record at the time the expulsion hearing is conducted. Upon the commencement of the hearing, all matters shall be pursued and conducted with reasonable diligence and shall be concluded without any unnecessary delay.
(b) Written notice of the hearing shall be forwarded to the pupil at least 10 calendar days before the date of the hearing. The notice shall include all of the following:
(1) The date and place of the hearing.
(2) A statement of the specific facts and charges upon which the proposed expulsion is based.
(3) A copy of the disciplinary rules of the school district that relate to the alleged violation.
(4) A notice of the parent, guardian, or pupil’s obligation pursuant to subdivision (b) of Section 48915.1.
(5) Notice of the opportunity for the pupil or the pupil’s parent or guardian to appear in person or to be represented by legal counsel or by a nonattorney adviser, to inspect and obtain copies of all documents to be used at the hearing, to confront and question all witnesses who testify at the hearing, to question all other evidence presented, and to present oral and documentary evidence on the pupil’s behalf, including witnesses. In a hearing in which a pupil is alleged to have committed or attempted to commit a sexual assault as specified in subdivision (n) (m) of Section 48900 or to have committed a sexual battery as defined in subdivision (n) (m) of Section 48900, a complaining witness shall be given five days’ notice before being called to testify, and shall be entitled to have up to two adult support persons, including, but not limited to, a parent, guardian, or legal counsel, present during his or her testimony. Before a complaining witness testifies, support persons shall be admonished that the hearing is confidential. This subdivision shall not preclude the person presiding over an expulsion hearing from removing a support person whom the presiding person finds is disrupting the hearing. If one or both of the support persons is also a witness, the provisions of Section 868.5 of the Penal Code shall be followed for the hearing. This section does not require a pupil or the pupil’s parent or guardian to be represented by legal counsel or by a nonattorney adviser at the hearing.
(A) For purposes of this section, “legal counsel” means an attorney or lawyer who is admitted to the practice of law in California and is an active member of the State Bar of California.
(B) For purposes of this section, “nonattorney adviser” means an individual who is not an attorney or lawyer, but who is familiar with the facts of the case, and has been selected by the pupil or pupil’s parent or guardian to provide assistance at the hearing.
(c) (1) Notwithstanding Section 35145, the governing board of the school district shall conduct a hearing to consider the expulsion of a pupil in a session closed to the public, unless the pupil requests, in writing, at least five days before the date of the hearing, that the hearing be conducted at a public meeting. Regardless of whether the expulsion hearing is conducted in a closed or public session, the governing board of the school district may meet in closed session for the purpose of deliberating and determining whether the pupil should be expelled.
(2) If the governing board of the school district or the hearing officer or administrative panel appointed under subdivision (d) to conduct the hearing admits any other person to a closed deliberation session, the parent or guardian of the pupil, the pupil, and the counsel of the pupil also shall be allowed to attend the closed deliberations.
(3) If the hearing is to be conducted at a public meeting, and there is a charge of committing or attempting to commit a sexual assault as defined in subdivision (n) (m) of Section 48900 or to commit a sexual battery as defined in subdivision (n) (m) of Section 48900, a complaining witness shall have the right to have his or her testimony heard in a session closed to the public when testifying at a public meeting would threaten serious psychological harm to the complaining witness and there are no alternative procedures to avoid the threatened harm, including, but not limited to, videotaped deposition or contemporaneous examination in another place communicated to the hearing room by means of closed-circuit television.
(d) Instead of conducting an expulsion hearing itself, the governing board of the school district may contract with the county hearing officer, or with the Office of Administrative Hearings pursuant to Chapter 14 (commencing with Section 27720) of Part 3 of Division 2 of Title 3 of the Government Code and Section 35207 of this code, for a hearing officer to conduct the hearing. The governing board of the school district may also appoint an impartial administrative panel of three or more certificated persons, none of whom is a member of the governing board of the school district or employed on the staff of the school in which the pupil is enrolled. The hearing shall be conducted in accordance with all of the procedures established under this section.
(e) Within three schooldays after the hearing, the hearing officer or administrative panel shall determine whether to recommend the expulsion of the pupil to the governing board of the school district. If the hearing officer or administrative panel decides not to recommend expulsion, the expulsion proceedings shall be terminated and the pupil immediately shall be reinstated and permitted to return to the classroom instructional program from which the expulsion referral was made, unless the parent, guardian, or responsible adult of the pupil requests another school placement in writing. Before the placement decision is made by the parent, guardian, or responsible adult, the superintendent of schools or the superintendent’s designee shall consult with school district personnel, including the pupil’s teachers, and the parent, guardian, or responsible adult regarding any other school placement options for the pupil in addition to the option to return to his or her classroom instructional program from which the expulsion referral was made. If the hearing officer or administrative panel finds that the pupil committed any of the acts specified in subdivision (c) of Section 48915, but does not recommend expulsion, the pupil shall be immediately reinstated and may be referred to his or her prior school or another comprehensive school, or, pursuant to the procedures set forth in Section 48432.5, a continuation school of the school district. The decision not to recommend expulsion shall be final.
(f) (1) If the hearing officer or administrative panel recommends expulsion, findings of fact in support of the recommendation shall be prepared and submitted to the governing board of the school district. All findings of fact and recommendations shall be based solely on the evidence adduced at the hearing. If the governing board of the school district accepts the recommendation calling for expulsion, acceptance shall be based either upon a review of the findings of fact and recommendations submitted by the hearing officer or panel or upon the results of any supplementary hearing conducted pursuant to this section that the governing board of the school district may order.
(2) The decision of the governing board of the school district to expel a pupil shall be based upon substantial evidence relevant to the charges adduced at the expulsion hearing or hearings. Except as provided in this section, no evidence to expel shall be based solely upon hearsay evidence. The governing board of the school district or the hearing officer or administrative panel may, upon a finding that good cause exists, determine that the disclosure of either the identity of a witness or the testimony of that witness at the hearing, or both, would subject the witness to an unreasonable risk of psychological or physical harm. Upon this determination, the testimony of the witness may be presented at the hearing in the form of sworn declarations that shall be examined only by the governing board of the school district or the hearing officer or administrative panel. Copies of these sworn declarations, edited to delete the name and identity of the witness, shall be made available to the pupil.
(g) A record of the hearing shall be made. The record may be maintained by any means, including electronic recording, so long as a reasonably accurate and complete written transcription of the proceedings can be made.
(h) (1) Technical rules of evidence shall not apply to the hearing, but relevant evidence may be admitted and given probative effect only if it is the kind of evidence upon which reasonable persons are accustomed to rely in the conduct of serious affairs. A decision of the governing board of the school district to expel shall be supported by substantial evidence showing that the pupil committed any of the acts enumerated in Section 48900.
(2) In hearings that include an allegation of committing or attempting to commit a sexual assault as defined in subdivision (n) (m) of Section 48900 or to commit a sexual battery as defined in subdivision (n) (m) of Section 48900, evidence of specific instances, of a complaining witness’ prior sexual conduct is to be presumed inadmissible and shall not be heard absent a determination by the person conducting the hearing that extraordinary circumstances exist requiring the evidence be heard. Before the person conducting the hearing makes the determination on whether extraordinary circumstances exist requiring that specific instances of a complaining witness’ prior sexual conduct be heard, the complaining witness shall be provided notice and an opportunity to present opposition to the introduction of the evidence. In the hearing on the admissibility of the evidence, the complaining witness shall be entitled to be represented by a parent, guardian, legal counsel, or other support person. Reputation or opinion evidence regarding the sexual behavior of the complaining witness is not admissible for any purpose.
(i) (1) Before the hearing has commenced, the governing board of the school district may issue subpoenas at the request of either the superintendent of schools or the superintendent’s designee or the pupil, for the personal appearance of percipient witnesses at the hearing. After the hearing has commenced, the governing board of the school district or the hearing officer or administrative panel may, upon request of either the county superintendent of schools or the superintendent’s designee or the pupil, issue subpoenas. All subpoenas shall be issued in accordance with Sections 1985, 1985.1, and 1985.2 of the Code of Civil Procedure. Enforcement of subpoenas shall be done in accordance with Section 11455.20 of the Government Code.
(2) Any objection raised by the superintendent of schools or the superintendent’s designee or the pupil to the issuance of subpoenas may be considered by the governing board of the school district in closed session, or in open session, if so requested by the pupil before the meeting. Any decision by the governing board of the school district in response to an objection to the issuance of subpoenas shall be final and binding.
(3) If the governing board of the school district, hearing officer, or administrative panel determines, in accordance with subdivision (f), that a percipient witness would be subject to an unreasonable risk of harm by testifying at the hearing, a subpoena shall not be issued to compel the personal attendance of that witness at the hearing. However, that witness may be compelled to testify by means of a sworn declaration as provided for in subdivision (f).
(4) Service of process shall be extended to all parts of the state and shall be served in accordance with Section 1987 of the Code of Civil Procedure. All witnesses appearing pursuant to subpoena, other than the parties or officers or employees of the state or any political subdivision of the state, shall receive fees, and all witnesses appearing pursuant to subpoena, except the parties, shall receive mileage in the same amount and under the same circumstances as prescribed for witnesses in civil actions in a superior court. Fees and mileage shall be paid by the party at whose request the witness is subpoenaed.
(j) Whether an expulsion hearing is conducted by the governing board of the school district or before a hearing officer or administrative panel, final action to expel a pupil shall be taken only by the governing board of the school district in a public session. Written notice of any decision to expel or to suspend the enforcement of an expulsion order during a period of probation shall be sent by the superintendent of schools or his or her designee to the pupil or the pupil’s parent or guardian and shall be accompanied by all of the following:
(1) Notice of the right to appeal the expulsion to the county board of education.
(2) Notice of the education alternative placement to be provided to the pupil during the time of expulsion.
(3) Notice of the obligation of the parent, guardian, or pupil under subdivision (b) of Section 48915.1, upon the pupil’s enrollment in a new school district, to inform that school district of the pupil’s expulsion.
(k) (1) The governing board of the school district shall maintain a record of each expulsion, including the cause for the expulsion. Records of expulsions shall be nonprivileged, disclosable public records.
(2) The expulsion order and the causes for the expulsion shall be recorded in the pupil’s mandatory interim record and shall be forwarded to any school in which the pupil subsequently enrolls upon receipt of a request from the admitting school for the pupil’s school records.

SEC. 11.

 Section 48918.5 of the Education Code is amended to read:

48918.5.
 In expulsion hearings involving allegations brought pursuant to subdivision (n) (m) of Section 48900, the governing board of each school district shall establish rules and regulations governing procedures. The procedures shall include, but are not limited to, all of the following:
(a) At the time that the expulsion hearing is recommended, the complaining witness shall be provided with a copy of the applicable disciplinary rules and advised of his or her right to: (1) receive five days’ notice of the complaining witness’s scheduled testimony at the hearing, (2) have up to two adult support persons of his or her choosing, choosing present in the hearing at the time he or she testifies; and (3) to have the hearing closed during the time they testify pursuant to subdivision (c) of Section 48918.
(b) An expulsion hearing may be postponed for one schoolday in order to accommodate the special physical, mental, or emotional needs of a pupil who is the complaining witness where the allegations arise under subdivision (n) (m) of Section 48900.
(c) The school district shall provide a nonthreatening environment for a complaining witness in order to better enable them to speak freely and accurately of the experiences that are the subject of the expulsion hearing, and to prevent discouragement of complaints. Each school district shall provide a room separate from the hearing room for the use of the complaining witness prior to before and during breaks in testimony. In the discretion of the person conducting the hearing, the complaining witness shall be allowed reasonable periods of relief from examination and cross-examination during which he or she may leave the hearing room. The person conducting the hearing may arrange the seating within the hearing room of those present in order to facilitate a less intimidating environment for the complaining witness. The person conducting the hearing may limit the time for taking the testimony of a complaining witness to the hours he or she is normally in school, if there is no good cause to take the testimony during other hours. The person conducting the hearing may permit one of the complaining witness’s support persons to accompany him or her to the witness stand.
(d) Whenever any allegation is made of conduct violative of subdivision (n) (m) of Section 48900, complaining witnesses and accused pupils are to be advised immediately to refrain from personal or telephonic contact with each other during the pendency of any expulsion process.

SEC. 12.

 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.