Tennessee - Bullying Harassment and Intimidation Policy: Policy or Plan Requirements

Area: 
Policy Or Plan Requirements
Policy Type: 
Statute
Summary: 

State law requires districts to adopt comprehensive anti-bullying policies addressing all U.S. Department of Education-recommended policy requirements.

2017 Tennessee Code Annotated 49-6-4503. Adoption of policy prohibiting harassment, intimidation, bullying or cyber-bullying by the school district.

(a) Each school district shall adopt a policy prohibiting harassment, intimidation, bullying or cyber-bullying. School districts are encouraged to develop the policy after consultation with parents and guardians, school employees, volunteers, students, administrators and community representatives.

(b) School districts shall include in the policies:

  • (1) A statement prohibiting harassment, intimidation, bullying or cyber-bullying;
  • (2) A definition of harassment, intimidation, bullying or cyber-bullying;
  • (3) A description of the type of behavior expected from each student;
  • (4) A statement of the consequences and appropriate remedial action for a person who commits an act of harassment, intimidation, bullying or cyber-bullying;
  • (5) A procedure for reporting an act of harassment, intimidation, bullying or cyber-bullying, including a provision that permits a person to report an act of harassment, intimidation, bullying or cyber-bullying anonymously. Nothing in this section may be construed to permit formal disciplinary action solely on the basis of an anonymous report;
  • (6) A procedure for the prompt and immediate investigation when an act of harassment, intimidation, bullying, or cyber-bullying is reported to the principal, the principal's designee, teacher, or school counselor. The principal or the principal's designee shall initiate the investigation within forty-eight (48) hours of receipt of the report, unless the need for more time is appropriately documented, and the principal or the principal's designee shall initiate an appropriate intervention within twenty (20) calendar days of receipt of the report, unless the need for more time is appropriately documented;
  • (7) A statement of the manner in which a school district shall respond after an act of harassment, intimidation, bullying or cyber-bullying is reported, investigated and confirmed;
  • (8) A statement of the consequences and appropriate remedial action for a person found to have committed an act of harassment, intimidation, bullying or cyber-bullying;
  • (9) A statement prohibiting reprisal or retaliation against any person who reports an act of harassment, intimidation, bullying or cyber-bullying and stating the consequences and appropriate remedial action for a person who engages in such reprisal or retaliation;
  • (10) A statement of the consequences and appropriate remedial action for a person found to have falsely accused another of having committed an act of harassment, intimidation, bullying or cyber-bullying as a means of reprisal or retaliation or as a means of harassment, intimidation, bullying or cyber-bullying;
  • (11) A statement of how the policy is to be publicized within the district, including a notice that the policy applies to behavior at school-sponsored activities;
  • (12) The identification by job title of school officials responsible for ensuring that the policy is implemented;
  • (13) A procedure for discouraging and reporting conduct aimed at defining a student in a sexual manner or conduct impugning the character of a student based on allegations of sexual promiscuity; and
  • (14) A procedure for a referral for appropriate counseling and support services for students involved in an act of harassment, intimidation, bullying, or cyber-bullying, when deemed necessary by the principal. The counseling and support services may be conducted by school counseling personnel who are appropriately trained, such as psychologists, social workers, school counselors, or any other personnel or resources available.

2017 Tennessee Code Annotated 49-6-4503. Adoption of policy prohibiting harassment, intimidation, bullying or cyber-bullying by the school district.

(a) Each school district shall adopt a policy prohibiting harassment, intimidation, bullying or cyber-bullying. School districts are encouraged to develop the policy after consultation with parents and guardians, school employees, volunteers, students, administrators and community representatives.

(b) School districts shall include in the policies:

  • (1) A statement prohibiting harassment, intimidation, bullying or cyber-bullying;
  • (2) A definition of harassment, intimidation, bullying or cyber-bullying;
  • (3) A description of the type of behavior expected from each student;
  • (4) A statement of the consequences and appropriate remedial action for a person who commits an act of harassment, intimidation, bullying or cyber-bullying;
  • (5) A procedure for reporting an act of harassment, intimidation, bullying or cyber-bullying, including a provision that permits a person to report an act of harassment, intimidation, bullying or cyber-bullying anonymously. Nothing in this section may be construed to permit formal disciplinary action solely on the basis of an anonymous report;
  • (6) A procedure for the prompt and immediate investigation when an act of harassment, intimidation, bullying, or cyber-bullying is reported to the principal, the principal's designee, teacher, or school counselor. The principal or the principal's designee shall initiate the investigation within forty-eight (48) hours of receipt of the report, unless the need for more time is appropriately documented, and the principal or the principal's designee shall initiate an appropriate intervention within twenty (20) calendar days of receipt of the report, unless the need for more time is appropriately documented;
  • (7) A statement of the manner in which a school district shall respond after an act of harassment, intimidation, bullying or cyber-bullying is reported, investigated and confirmed;
  • (8) A statement of the consequences and appropriate remedial action for a person found to have committed an act of harassment, intimidation, bullying or cyber-bullying;
  • (9) A statement prohibiting reprisal or retaliation against any person who reports an act of harassment, intimidation, bullying or cyber-bullying and stating the consequences and appropriate remedial action for a person who engages in such reprisal or retaliation;
  • (10) A statement of the consequences and appropriate remedial action for a person found to have falsely accused another of having committed an act of harassment, intimidation, bullying or cyber-bullying as a means of reprisal or retaliation or as a means of harassment, intimidation, bullying or cyber-bullying;
  • (11) A statement of how the policy is to be publicized within the district, including a notice that the policy applies to behavior at school-sponsored activities;
  • (12) The identification by job title of school officials responsible for ensuring that the policy is implemented;
  • (13) A procedure for discouraging and reporting conduct aimed at defining a student in a sexual manner or conduct impugning the character of a student based on allegations of sexual promiscuity; and
  • (14) A procedure for a referral for appropriate counseling and support services for students involved in an act of harassment, intimidation, bullying, or cyber-bullying, when deemed necessary by the principal. The counseling and support services may be conducted by school counseling personnel who are appropriately trained, such as psychologists, social workers, school counselors, or any other personnel or resources available.
Policy Links: