Utah - Hazing Policy: Policy or Plan Requirements

Area: 
Policy Or Plan Requirements
Policy Type: 
statute; regulation
Summary: 

State law requires districts to adopt hazing policies.

Utah Code 53G-9-605. Bullying, cyber-bullying, hazing, abusive conduct, and retaliation policy.

(1) On or before September 1, 2018, a school board shall update the school board's bullying, cyber-bullying, hazing, and retaliation policy to include abusive conduct.

(2) A policy shall:

  • (a) be developed only with input from:
    • (i) students;
    • (ii) parents;
    • (iii) teachers;
    • (iv) school administrators;
    • (v) school staff; or
    • (vi) local law enforcement agencies; and
  • (b) provide protection to a student, regardless of the student's legal status.

(3) A policy shall include the following components:

  • (a) definitions of bullying, cyber-bullying, hazing, and abusive conduct that are consistent with this chapter;
  • (b) language prohibiting bullying, cyber-bullying, hazing, and abusive conduct;
  • (c) language prohibiting retaliation against an individual who reports conduct that is prohibited under this chapter;
  • (d) language prohibiting making a false report of bullying, cyber-bullying, hazing, abusive conduct, or retaliation;
  • (e) as required in Section 53G-9-604, parental notification of:
    • (i) a student's threat to commit suicide; and
    • (ii) an incident of bullying, cyber-bullying, hazing, abusive conduct, or retaliation, involving the parent's student;
  • (f) a grievance process for a school employee who has experienced abusive conduct;
  • (g) an action plan to address a reported incident of bullying, cyber-bullying, hazing, or retaliation; and
  • (h) a requirement for a signed statement annually, indicating that the individual signing the statement has received the school board's policy, from each:
    • (i) school employee;
    • (ii) student who is at least eight years old; and
    • (iii) parent or guardian of a student enrolled in the charter school or school district.

Utah Administrative Code R277-409-3. Membership Restrictions.

(6) An association shall establish policies or rules that require:

  • (a) coaches and individuals who oversee interscholastic activities or work with students as part of an interscholastic activity to meet a set of professional standards that are consistent with the Utah Educator Professional Standards described in Rule R277-515; and
  • (b) the association or public school to annually train each coach or other individual who oversees or works with students as part of an interscholastic activity of a public school on the following:
    • (i) child sexual abuse prevention as described in Section 53G-9-207;
    • (ii) the prevention of bullying, cyber-bullying, hazing, harassment, and retaliation as described in:
      • (A) Title 53G, Chapter 9, Bullying and Hazing; and
      • (B) R277-613; and
    • (iii) the professional standards described in Subsection (6)(a).
      Utah Office of Administrative Rules

Utah Administrative Code R277-613-1. Definitions. [Repealed and revised as of 10/1/2018]

G. "Hazing" means intentionally or knowingly committing an act that:

  • (1)(a) endangers the physical health or safety of a school employee or student;
    • (b) involves any brutality of a physical nature such as whipping, beating, branding, calisthenics, bruising, electric shocking, placing of a harmful substance on the body, or exposure to the elements;
    • (c) involves consumption of any food, liquor, drug, or other substance;
    • (d) involves other physical activity that endangers the physical health and safety of a school employee or student; or
    • (e) involves physically obstructing a school employee's or student's freedom to move; and
    • (f)(i) is done for the purpose of initiation or admission into, affiliation with, holding office in, or as a condition for, membership or acceptance, or continued membership or acceptance, in any school or school sponsored team, organization, program, or event; or
      • (ii) if the person committing the act against a school employee or student knew that the school employee or student is a member of, or candidate for, membership with a school, or school sponsored team, organization, program, or event to which the person committing the act belongs to or participates in.
  • (2) The conduct described in R277-613-1G constitutes hazing, regardless of whether the person against whom the conduct is committed, directed, consented to, or acquiesced in, the conduct.
    Utah Office of Administrative Rules

Utah Administrative Code R277-609-2. Definitions.

(11) "Policy" means standards and procedures that include:

  • (a) the provisions of Section 53G-8-202 and additional standards, procedures, and training adopted in an open meeting by a local board of education or charter school board that:
    • (i) defines hazing, bullying, cyber-bullying, and harassment;
    • (ii) prohibits hazing and bullying;
    • (iii) requires annual discussion and training designed to prevent hazing, bullying, cyber-bullying, discipline, emergency safety interventions, and harassment among school employees and students; and
    • (iv) provides for enforcement through employment action or student discipline.
      Utah Office of Administrative Rules

Utah Administrative Code R277-605-3. Coaches and School Activity Leaders as Supervisors and Role Models.

(1) Coaches and other designated school leaders shall diligently supervise student athletes at all times while on school-sponsored activities, including supervising students:

  • (a) on the field, court, or other competition or performance sites;
  • (b) in locker rooms, in seating areas, in eating establishments, and in lodging facilities; and
  • (c) while traveling.

(2) A coach or other designated school leader shall be an exemplary role model and may not use alcoholic beverages, tobacco, controlled substances, or participate in promiscuous sexual relationships while on school-sponsored activities.

(3) Coaches, assistants and advisors shall act in a manner consistent with Section 53G-8-209 and may not:

  • (a) use foul, abusive, or profane language while engaged in school related activities; or
  • (b) permit hazing, demeaning, or assaultive behavior, whether consensual or not, including behavior involving physical violence, restraint, improper touching, or inappropriate exposure of body parts not normally exposed in public settings, forced ingestion of any substance, or any act which would constitute a crime against a person or public order under Utah law.
    Utah Office of Administrative Rules

Utah Administrative Code R277-613-4. LEA Responsibility to Create Bullying Policies. [Repealed and Replaced as of 2/15/18]

A. Each LEA shall implement an updated policy prohibiting bullying, cyber-bullying, hazing, harassment and retaliation, and making a false report, consistent with Section 53A-11a-301.

B. Each LEA shall:

  • (1) post a copy of its policy on the LEA website; and
  • (2) provide a copy of the LEA policy or uniform resource locator (URL) to the State Superintendent of Public Instruction at the Utah State Office of Education.

C. The policy shall include parental notification of:

  • (1) a parent's student's threat to commit suicide; and
  • (2) an incident of bullying, cyber-bullying, hazing, harassment or retaliation involving the parent's student.
  • (3) This part of the policy shall also include:
    • (a) timely parent notification;
    • (b) designation of the appropriate school employee(s) to provide parent notification;
    • (c) designation of the format in which notification shall be provided to parents and maintained by the LEA;
    • (d) directives for secure maintenance of the notification record as required under Section 53A-11a-203(1);
    • (e) a retention period and destruction process for the notification; and
    • (f) an LEA definition of parent(s) consistent with Section 53A-11-203 and this rule.

D. The policy shall provide for student assessment of the prevalence of bullying, cyber-bullying, hazing and harassment in LEAs and schools, specifically locations where students are unsafe and additional adult supervision may be required, such as playgrounds, hallways, and lunch areas.

E. The policy shall include required strong responsive action against retaliation, including assistance to harassed students and their parents in reporting subsequent problems and new incidents.

F. The policy shall provide that students, staff, and volunteers receive training on bullying, cyber-bullying, hazing and harassment from individuals qualified to provide such training. The LEA shall determine how often training shall be provided.

  • (1) The training should be specific to:
    • (a) overt aggression that may include physical fighting such as punching, shoving, kicking, and verbal threatening behavior, such as name calling, or both physical and verbal aggression or threatening behavior;
    • (b) relational aggression or indirect, covert, or social aggression, including rumor spreading, intimidation, enlisting a friend to assault a child, and social isolation;
    • (c) sexual aggression or acts of a sexual nature or with sexual overtones;
    • (d) cyber-bullying, including use of email, web pages, text messaging, instant messaging, three-way calling or messaging or any other electronic means for aggression inside or outside of school; and
    • (e) civil rights violations, appropriate reporting and investigative procedures. This includes bullying, cyber-bullying, hazing and harassment based upon the students' actual or perceived identities and conformance or failure to conform with stereotypes.
  • (2) Training should also include awareness and intervention skills such as social skills training for students and staff, including aides, custodians, kitchen and lunchroom workers, secretaries, paraprofessionals, and coaches.
  • (3) Training on bullying, cyber-bullying, hazing and harassment required of LEA policies under the rule should complement the suicide prevention program required for students under R277-620 and the suicide prevention training required for licensed educators consistent with Section 53A-1-603(9).

G. Policies shall also complement existing safe and drug free school policies and school discipline plans. Consistent with R277-609, the discipline plan shall provide direction for dealing with bullying, cyber-bullying, hazing, harassment and disruptive students. This part of the plan shall:

  • (1) direct schools to determine the range of behaviors and establish the continuum of administrative procedures that may be used by school personnel to address the behavior of habitually disruptive students;
  • (2) provide for the identification, by position(s), of individual(s) designated to issue notices of disruptive student and bullying, cyber-bullying, hazing and harassment behavior;
  • (3) designate to whom notices shall be provided;
  • (4) provide for documentation of disruptive student behavior prior to referral of disruptive students to juvenile court;
  • (5) include strategies to provide for necessary adult supervision;
  • (6) be clearly written and consistently enforced;
  • (7) include administration, instruction and support staff, students, parents, community council and other community members in policy development, training and prevention implementation so as to create a community sense of participation, ownership, support and responsibility; and
  • (8) provide notice to employees that violation(s) of this rule may result in employment discipline or action.
    Utah Office of Administrative Rules

Utah Administrative Code R277-516-6. Association Professional Standard Setting, Training, and Monitoring.

(1) Beginning with the 2017-2018 school year, a public school may not be a member of, or pay dues to an association that adopts rules or policies that are inconsistent with this R277-516-6.

(2) An association shall establish policies or rules that require:

  • (a) coaches and individuals who oversee interscholastic activities or work with students as part of an interscholastic activity to meet a set of professional standards that are consistent with the Utah Educator Professional Standards described in Rule R277-515; and
  • (b) the association or public school to annually train each coach or other individual who oversees or works with students as part of an interscholastic activity of a public school on the following:
    • (i) child sexual abuse prevention as described in Section 53A-13-112;
    • (ii) the prevention of bullying, cyber-bullying, hazing, harassment, and retaliation as described in:
      • (A) Title 53A, Chapter 11a, Bullying and Hazing; and
      • (B) R277-613; and
    • (iii) the professional standards described in Subsection (2)(a).

(3) An association shall establish procedures and mechanisms to:

  • (a) monitor LEA compliance with the association's training requirements described in Subsection (2); and
  • (b) track the employment history of individuals who receive a certification from the association.
    Utah Office of Administrative Rules

Utah Administrative Code R277-613-2. Definitions. [Repealed and Replaced as of 2/15/18]

G. "Hazing" means intentionally or knowingly committing an act that:
(1)(a) endangers the physical health or safety of a school employee or student;

  • (b) involves any brutality of a physical nature such as whipping, beating, branding, calisthenics, bruising, electric shocking, placing of a harmful substance on the body, or exposure to the elements;
  • (c) involves consumption of any food, liquor, drug, or other substance;
  • (d) involves other physical activity that endangers the physical health and safety of a school employee or student; or
  • (e) involves physically obstructing a school employee's or student's freedom to move; and
  • (f)(i) is done for the purpose of initiation or admission into, affiliation with, holding office in, or as a condition for, membership or acceptance, or continued membership or acceptance, in any school or school sponsored team, organization, program, or event; or
    • (ii) if the person committing the act against a school employee or student knew that the school employee or student is a member of, or candidate for, membership with a school, or school sponsored team, organization, program, or event to which the person committing the act belongs to or participates in.

(2) The conduct described in R277-613-1G constitutes hazing, regardless of whether the person against whom the conduct is committed, directed, consented to, or acquiesced in, the conduct.

H. "LEA" means a local education agency, including local school boards/public school districts, charter schools, and, for purposes of this rule, the Utah Schools for the Deaf and the Blind.

I. "Parent," for purposes of this rule, means a student's guardian consistent with Section 53A-11a-203(1).

J. "Participant" means any student, employee or volunteer coach participating in a public school sponsored athletic program, both curricular and extracurricular, or extracurricular club or activity.

K. "Policy" means standards and procedures that include the provisions of Section 53A-11-901 and additional standards, procedures, and training adopted in an open meeting by an LEA board that define bullying, cyber-bullying, hazing and harassment, prohibit bullying, cyber-bullying, hazing and harassment, require regular annual discussion and training designed to prevent bullying, cyber-bullying, hazing and harassment among school employees and students and provide for enforcement through employment action or student discipline.

L. "Retaliate or retaliation" means an act or communication intended:
(1) as retribution against a person for reporting bullying, cyber-bullying, hazing and harassment; or
(2) to improperly influence the investigation of, or the response to, a report of bullying, cyber-bullying, hazing and harassment.
Utah Office of Administrative Rules


Utah Administrative Code R277-613-5. Training by LEAs Specific to Participants in Public School Athletic Programs and School Clubs. [Repealed and Replaced as of 2/15/18]

A. Prior to any student, employee or volunteer coach participating in a public school sponsored athletic program, both curricular and extracurricular, or extracurricular club or activity, the student, employee or coach shall participate in bullying, cyber-bullying, hazing and harassment prevention training. This training shall be offered to new participants on an annual basis and to all participants at least once every three years.
B. LEAs may collaborate with the Utah High School Activities Association to develop and provide training.
C. Student athletes and extracurricular club members shall be informed of prohibited activities under this rule and notified of potential consequences for violation of the law and the rule.
D. Training curriculum outlines, training schedules, and participant lists or signatures shall be maintained by each LEA and provided to the Utah State Office of Education upon request.
Utah Office of Administrative Rules

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