SENATE BILL 5543
State of Washington 52nd Legislature 1991 Regular Session
By Senators Bailey and Rinehart.
Read first time February 6, 1991. Referred to Committee on Education.
AN ACT Relating to the professional standards unit within the office of the superintendent of public instruction; adding a new section to chapter 28A.300 RCW; and making an appropriation.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF WASHINGTON:
NEW SECTION. Sec. 1. A new section is added to chapter 28A.300 RCW to read as follows:
(1) The superintendent of public instruction shall establish a professional standards unit to receive, investigate, and process written complaints or reports of lack of good moral character and personal fitness and acts of unprofessional conduct by school staff, including reports or complaints of suspected acts of child abuse and neglect by school staff on school grounds or in school facilities.
The professional standards unit, under the authority of the superintendent of public instruction, shall also enforce the code of professional conduct adopted by rule by the state board of education.
(2) Any person may submit a written report or complaint to the superintendent of public instruction. The professional standards unit shall investigate all written reports and complaints.
(3) The superintendent of public instruction may, upon the findings of an investigation, and when appropriate, prepare cases for formal action by the attorney general of Washington state.
(4) The superintendent of public instruction may establish a panel of educators to review cases prepared by the professional standards unit. The panel may review cases and make recommendations to the superintendent of public instruction regarding actions only in those instances when a formal hearing has been held by the professional standards unit.
The superintendent of public instruction or his or her designee is responsible for making the final determination regarding potential actions, including but not limited to: Recommendation for suspension, letter of reprimand, certificate revocation, or request for legal action by the attorney general.
(5) The professional standards unit may work with the department of social and health services or law enforcement agencies in conducting investigations.
(6) The superintendent of public instruction shall report annually to the legislature on the number of written reports and complaints received and the resolution of those complaints. The report shall include a breakdown indicating the number of reports received by parents, students, teachers, administrators, other school personnel, and others.
NEW SECTION. Sec. 2. The sum of five hundred sixty thousand dollars, or as much thereof as may be necessary, is appropriated for the biennium ending June 30, 1993, from the general fund to the superintendent of public instruction for the purpose of section 1 of this act.