3143 Notification and Dissemination of Information about Student Offenses and Notifications

  • Notification and Dissemination of Information about Student Offenses and Notification of Threats of Violence or Harm

    Yelm Community Schools is committed to providing a safe and secure environment for all its students and staff. All students, including those who have committed or been adjudicated for offenses, have constitutional rights to public education.

    A. Notification of Student Offenses from County Sheriff’s Office, Courts, Department of Social and Health Services, Department of Corrections, and Other School Districts.
    The district receives notices and information about student offenders from several statutorily authorized sources, including the county sheriff’s office, the courts, the department of social and health services, the department of corrections, and other school districts where the student previously enrolled. The district will take appropriate precautionary measures when it receives notices and information of student offenses from any of these sources. Student discipline, if any, will be consistent with 3241 – Student Discipline.

    The superintendent, or his or her designee, and school principals play an important role in determining and implementing appropriate precautionary measures relating to notices and information about student offenses. If the superintendent, a designee of the superintendent, or a principal of a school receives student offense information under RCW 28A.225.330 (notifications from other school districts), 9A.44.138 (sheriff notifications to school districts), 13.04.155 (court notifications to school districts), 13.40.215 (department of children, youth, and families notifications to school districts), or 72.09.730 (department of corrections notifications to school districts), the following notification provisions will be followed.

    1.  Sex Offenses and Registered Sex or Kidnapping Offenders.
      A.  Superintendent or Designee. Upon receipt of information about sex offenses as defined in RCW 9.94A.030 or upon receipt of information about registered sex or kidnapping offenders pursuant to RCW 9A.44.138, the superintendent or his or her designee will provide          the information to the principal of the school where the student is enrolled or will enroll—or, if not known, where the student was most recently enrolled.

      B.  Principals. When the principal receives the information described above, he or she must then disclose the information as follows.

    If the student is classified as a risk level II or III, the principal shall provide the information received to every teacher of the student and to any other personnel who, in the judgment of the principal, supervises the student or for security purposes should be aware of the student’s record. 

    If the student is classified as a risk level I, the principal shall provide the information received only to personnel who, in the judgment of the principal, for security purposes should be aware of the student’s record.                                                                                         

      C.  Convicted Juvenile Sex Offenders Attendance at Victims School. Convicted juvenile sex offenders are prohibited from attending the elementary, middle, or high school attended by their victims or their victims’ siblings. The parents or legal guardians of the convicted juvenile sex offender shall be responsible for providing transportation or covering other costs associated with or required by the sex offender’s change in school. 

    The Department of Social and Health Services (DSHS) Sex Offender School Attendance Program assists with ensuring that juvenile sex offenders, committed to Juvenile Rehabilitation Administration (JRA), do not enroll in the same school as their victim or their victims’ siblings. If there is a conflict in schools, DSHS program staff will work with JRA to have the offender moved to another school. 

      D.  Collaboration. The principal or designee will consult and collaborate with department of corrections, juvenile justice staff, treatment providers, victim support groups, and families, as applicable, when working with students required to register as a sex or kidnapping offender. 

      E.  Inquiries by the Public. Law enforcement agencies receive relevant information about the release of sex and kidnapping offenders into communities and decide when such information needs to be released to the public. Therefore, district and school staff will refer all inquiries by the public at large (including parents and students) regarding students required to register as a sex or kidnapping offender directly to law enforcement.

    2.  Violent Offenses, Firearms and Dangerous Weapons Crimes, Unlawful Possession or Delivery of Controlled Substances, or School Disciplinary Actions.
      A.  Superintendent or Designee. Upon receipt of information about a violent offense as defined in RCW 9.94A.030, any crime under chapter 9.41 RCW, unlawful possession or delivery, or both, of a controlled substance in violation of chapter 69.50 RCW, or a school disciplinary action, the superintendent or designee will provide the information to the principal of the school where the student is enrolled or will enroll—or, if not known, where the student was most recently enrolled.

      B.  Principals. When the principal, receives the information described above, he or she, has discretion to share the information with a district staff member if, in the principal’s judgment, the information is necessary for:

    • The staff member to supervise the student.
    • The staff member to provide or refer the student to therapeutic or behavioral health services; or
    • Security purposes

    School principals and staff should use care not to allow a student’s demographic or personal characteristics to bias the decision of whether to share information received.

    Upon receipt of information about an adjudication in juvenile court for an unlawful possession of a controlled substance in violation of chapter 69.50 RCW, the principal must notify the student and the parent or legal guardian at least five days before sharing the information with a district staff member.                                                                                                                                           

    If either the student or the student's parent or legal guardian objects to the proposed sharing of the information, the student, the student's parent or legal guardian, or both, may, within five business days of receiving notice from the principal, appeal the decision to share the information with staff to the superintendent of the district in accordance with procedures developed by the district. 

    The superintendent shall have five business days after receiving an appeal under the above to make a written determination on the matter. Determinations by the superintendent under this subsection are final and not subject to further appeal.

    A principal may not share adjudication information under this subsection with a district staff member while an appeal is pending.

    3.  Public Records Act.
    Any information received by district staff under this section is exempt from disclosure under the public records act (chapter 42.56 RCW) and may not be further disseminated except as provided in RCW 28A.225.330, other statutes or case law, and the family and educational and privacy rights act of 1994 (20 U.S.C. Sec. 1232g et seq.).

    4.  Assignment of Student Offenders to Certain Classrooms.
    A student committing an offense under chapter 9A.36 (assault), 9A.40 (kidnapping, unlawful imprisonment, custodial interference, luring, trafficking, and coercion of involuntary servitude), 9A.46 (harassment), or 9A.48 RCW (arson, reckless burning, and malicious mischief) when the activity is directed toward the teacher, shall not be assigned to that teacher’s classroom for the duration of the student’s attendance at that school or any other school where the teacher is assigned. 

    A student who commits an offense under chapter 9A.36 (assault), 9A.40 (kidnapping, unlawful imprisonment, custodial interference, luring, trafficking, and coercion of involuntary servitude), 9A.46 (harassment), or 9A.48 RCW (arson, reckless burning, and malicious mischief), when directed toward another student, may be removed from the classroom of the victim for the duration of the student's attendance at that school or any other school where the victim is enrolled.

      B.  Notification of Threats of Violence or Harm.
    Students and school employees who are subjects of threats of violence or harm will be notified of the threats in a timely manner. “Threats of violence or harm” means direct or indirect communications by any means of the intent to inflict physical harm upon a specific individual or individuals or that place a person in fear of the imminent likelihood of serious harm.

    The district will assess and address potential threats of violence or harm in a manner consistent with Policy and Procedure 3225 – School-Based Threat Assessment, other safety policies, and comprehensive safe school plans. In instances where the threat is deemed moderate risk or high risk, or requires further intervention to prevent violence or serious harm, the school administrator shall notify the parent and/or guardian of any student who is the target/recipient of a threat as well as the parent and/or guardian of any student who made the threat. The district will ensure that the notice is in a language the parent and or guardian understands, which may require language assistance for parents or guardians with limited-English proficiency under Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.                                                                

    If there is a specific and significant threat to the health or safety of a student or other individuals, the district may disclose information from education records to appropriate parties whose knowledge of the information is necessary. Timing and details of the notice will be as extensive as permitted by the federal Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act, other legal limitations, and the circumstances. 

    The district may use information about a threat of harm or violence in connection with student discipline consistent with Policy and Procedure 3241 – Student Discipline. 

    The district, board, school officials, and school employees providing notice in good faith as required and consistent with the board’s policies are immune from any liability arising out of such notification. A person who intentionally and in bad faith or maliciously, knowingly makes a false notification of a threat under this section is guilty of a misdemeanor punishable under RCW 9A.20.021. 

    C.  Immunity
    Any school district or district employee who releases the information in compliance with federal and state law is immune from civil liability for damages unless it is shown that the school district or district employee acted with gross negligence or in bad faith. 

    Cross References:   
    Board Policy 2161         Special Education and Related Services for Eligible Students                                                   
    Board Policy 2162         Education of Students with Disabilities Under Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973                                                   
    Board Policy 3120         Enrollment                                                   
    Board Policy 3140         Release of Resident Students                                                      
    Board Policy 3207         Prohibition of Harassment, Intimidation, and Bullying                                                   
    Board Policy 3225         School-Based Threat Assessment                                                   
    Board Policy 3231         Student Records                                                   
    Board Policy 3241         Student Discipline                                                   
    Board Policy 4020         Confidential Communications                                                   
    Board Policy 5281         Disciplinary Action and Discharge                                                   
    Board Policy 6513         Workplace Violence Prevention 

    Legal References:                            
    RCW 4.24.550         Sex offenders and kidnapping offenders – Release of information to public – Web site                                                      
    RCW 9A.44.130         Registration of sex offenders and kidnapping offenders – Procedures – Definition – Penalties                                                     
    RCW 13.04.155         Notification to school principal of conviction, adjudication, or diversion agreement—provision of information to teachers and other personnel—Confidentiality                     
    RCW 13.40.215          Juvenile found to have committed violent or sex offense or stalking—Notification of discharge, parole, leave, release, transfer, or escape—To whom given – School attendance – Definitions                                                  
    RCW 28A.225.330         Enrolling students from other districts – Requests for information and permanent records – Withheld transcripts – Immunity from liability – Notification to teachers and security personnel – Rules                                                    
    RCW 8A.320.128         Notice and disclosure policies – Threats of violence – Student conduct – Immunity for good faith notice – Penalty                                                  
    RCW 28A.600.460         Classroom discipline—policies—classroom placement of student offenders—data on disciplinary actions                               
    RCW 28A.320; 2020 c 167 § 1         Notification provisions                                                       
    RCW 72.09.345         Sex offenders – Release of information to protect public – End-of-sentence review committee – Assessment – Records access – Review, classification, referral of offenders – Issuance of narrative notices                                                         
    WAC 392-400         Student Discipline                        
    20 U.S.C. 1232g; 34 C.F.R. Part 99         Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act
    Article IX, Section 1         Washington State Constitution          

    Management Resources:  
    Policy News, Aug. 1997         Legislature addresses student discipline                                          
    Policy News, June 1999         School safety bills impact policy                                              
    Policy & Legal News         December 2006; February 2010; October 2010; August 2018; December 2018; December 2019; August 2020 

    ADOPTED: 12/17/1998

    REVISED: 08/26/99; 08/31/00; 02/24/11; 5/23/19; 01/14/21

    3143P

    Notification and Dissemination of Information about Student Offenses and Notification of Threats of Violence or Harm  

    A.  Registered Student Sex or Kidnapping Offenders.

    1. Principals. Principals have statutory disclosure obligations upon receipt of information about registered student sex or kidnapping offenders described in Policy 3143. In addition to their responsibilities described in Policy 3143, principals have a responsibility to develop a protocol for safety planning for registered student sex or kidnapping offenders, which will include student meetings, designing and monitoring student safety plans, and implementing safeguards when students change schools or change sex offender levels or status with parole or probation. 
    1. Safety Planning. The principal will complete safety planning for registered student sex or kidnapping offenders with school staff, law enforcement, probation or parole, treatment providers, parents or guardians, care providers, and child advocates, as appropriate, in order to provide a safe school environment for all students and staff. For safety planning to be effective, the district will finalize formal enrollments for students required to register as a sex or kidnapping offender promptly after their enrollment request. 
    1. Student Meetings.  The principal or designee, working together with probation and parole professionals, will meet promptly with the registered student sex or kidnapping offenders to create and implement a student safety plan. The principal or designee will determine other appropriate school personnel to be included in the meeting to assist in defining school expectations. The student’s parent or guardian or care provider may also be invited. The purpose for the meeting is to help the student be successful in his or her transition back to school and to provide a safe school environment for all students and staff.
    2. Student Safety Plan. The principal or designee (and other school staff as applicable) in consultation with probation and parole professionals (if under court supervision) will create a student safety plan for each registered student sex or kidnapping offender. The plan will outline the responsibilities of the student and other stakeholders to promote those activities deemed essential in safely managing the student’s behavior.
    • The Student Safety Plan will outline conditions and limitations on each student required to register as a sex or kidnapping offender concerning their interactions on the school campus;
    • For students not under court supervision, the Student Safety Plan should be developed in conjunction with school staff in consultation with the student's family or guardian or care provider;
    • The Student Safety Plan will be based on the student's needs and include guidelines for expected intervention actions for high-risk behaviors and reinforce positive behaviors;
    • Each Student Safety Plan will be reviewed as necessary by staff designated by the principal.

    5. Monitoring the Safety Plan
    The Student Safety Plan for registered student sex or kidnapping offenders will be monitored and changes made on an “as-needed” basis by school staff.

    • School authorities should be prepared to take appropriate actions (especially if they notice an increase or escalation of a student’s high-risk behaviors) for the short and long-term safety of the student required to register as a sex or kidnapping offender and all other students;
    • School staff will report to the principal or designee and to law enforcement or other involved agencies (treatment providers, parole/probation) if they determine the student has not followed the Student Safety Plan.
    • Follow-through on the Student Safety Plan will be consistent with existing disciplinary policies and procedures, student conduct policies, and mandatory reporting policies.

    Schools may develop school threat assessment teams and make referrals to those teams when students engage in inappropriate behaviors as defined in the Student Safety Plan. 

    6.  When Students Move or Change Status.
    When a registered student sex or kidnapping offender changes schools, whether within or outside of the district, the current principal will notify the new principal and share the student records and safety plans with the new school. If the student’s sex or kidnapping offender status or probation or parole status changes, the principal will notify the school staff as part of the school’s safety planning.

      B.  Adjudication in Juvenile Court for an Unlawful Possession of a Controlled Substance. 
    At least five days before a principal uses his or her discretion to share with a school or district staff member information about a student’s adjudication in juvenile court for an unlawful possession of a controlled substance in violation of chapter 69.50 RCW, the principal must first notify the student and the parent or legal guardian of the right to appeal the principal’s determination to the superintendent.  

    The principal’s notification may occur orally or in writing but must be in a language the parent and/or guardian understands, which may require language assistance for parents or guardians with limited-English proficiency under Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. 

    The principal will either verbally explain any process for how to appeal the principal’s determination or provide the student and parent/legal guardian with a copy of any written procedures developed by the district. 

    Within five business days of receiving notice from the principal, if either the student or the student's parent or legal guardian objects to the proposed sharing of the information, including objecting verbally or objecting in a writing, the principal will not share the student’s adjudication information with a school or district staff member until the superintendent determines the appeal.  

    The superintendent shall have five business days after receiving the appeal to make a written determination on the matter. Determinations by the superintendent under this subsection are final and not subject to further appeal. 

    C.  Notification of Threats of Violence or Harm

    The district has a school-based threat assessment program and investigates reports of possible threats of violence or harm consistent with Policy and Procedure 3225 – School-Based Threat Assessment.

    Under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), the district may release student records only with permission from the parent or the adult student (a student who is 18 years of age or older) or in a health or safety emergency, as defined by FERPA. For that reason, the district may disclose the identity of students who have made threats of violence or harm only as allowed by law.

    The district will provide relevant information about the threat to the subject of the threat, and advise the subject of the threat that if law enforcement has been involved in the matter.

    Suspension or other removal from the school environment can create the risk of triggering either an immediate or a delayed violent response unless such actions are coupled with containment and support. When considering the appropriate response to a student’s threat of violence or harm, the student’s individual circumstances will be taken into account.

    Any student discipline for making threats of violence or harm must be consistent with Policy and Procedure 3241 – Student Discipline. Discipline of students eligible for special education services or with disabilities will be consistent with Policy and Procedure 2161 – Special Education and Related Services for Eligible Student and Policy and Procedure 2162 - Education of Students with Disabilities Under Section 504. 

    ADOPTED: 01/14/21

     

3000 Policies