Florida - Firearms/Weapons on School Campuses: Prohibitions or Restrictions

Area: 
Prohibitions Or Restrictions
Policy Type: 
Statute
Summary: 

State law complies with minimum requirements of the federal Gun-Free Schools Act (GFSA) and adds student supports and protections.

Florida Statutes 1006.13 Policy of zero tolerance for crime and victimization.

(1) It is the intent of the Legislature to promote a safe and supportive learning environment in schools, to protect students and staff from conduct that poses a serious threat to school safety, and to encourage schools to use alternatives to expulsion or referral to law enforcement agencies by addressing disruptive behavior through restitution, civil citation, teen court, neighborhood restorative justice, or similar programs. The Legislature finds that zero-tolerance policies are not intended to be rigorously applied to petty acts of misconduct and misdemeanors, including, but not limited to, minor fights or disturbances. The Legislature finds that zero-tolerance policies must apply equally to all students regardless of their economic status, race, or disability.
(2) Each district school board shall adopt a policy of zero tolerance that:

  • (a) Defines criteria for reporting to a law enforcement agency any act that occurs whenever or wherever students are within the jurisdiction of the district school board.
  • (b) Defines acts that pose a serious threat to school safety.
  • (c) Defines petty acts of misconduct.
  • (d) Minimizes the victimization of students, staff, or volunteers, including taking all steps necessary to protect the victim of any violent crime from any further victimization.
  • (e) Establishes a procedure that provides each student with the opportunity for a review of the disciplinary action imposed pursuant to s. 1006.07.
    (3) Zero-tolerance policies must require students found to have committed one of the following offenses to be expelled, with or without continuing educational services, from the student's regular school for a period of not less than 1 full year, and to be referred to the criminal justice or juvenile justice system.
  • (a) Bringing a firearm or weapon, as defined in chapter 790, to school, to any school function, or onto any school-sponsored transportation or possessing a firearm at school.
  • (b) Making a threat or false report, as defined by ss. 790.162 and 790.163, respectively, involving school or school personnel's property, school transportation, or a school-sponsored activity.
    District school boards may assign the student to a disciplinary program for the purpose of continuing educational services during the period of expulsion. District school superintendents may consider the 1-year expulsion requirement on a case-by-case basis and request the district school board to modify the requirement by assigning the student to a disciplinary program or second chance school if the request for modification is in writing and it is determined to be in the best interest of the student and the school system. If a student committing any of the offenses in this subsection is a student who has a disability, the district school board shall comply with applicable State Board of Education rules.
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