Chapter 407, Laws of 2007

60th Legislature
2007 Regular Session



Passed by the Senate April 20, 2007
  YEAS 40   NAYS 8

President of the Senate
Passed by the House April 18, 2007
  YEAS 75   NAYS 20

Speaker of the House of Representatives


I, Thomas Hoemann, Secretary of the Senate of the State of Washington, do hereby certify that the attached is SUBSTITUTE SENATE BILL 5288 as passed by the Senate and the House of Representatives on the dates hereon set forth.

Approved May 9, 2007, 3:22 p.m.

Governor of the State of Washington
May 11, 2007

Secretary of State
State of Washington




Passed Legislature - 2007 Regular Session
State of Washington60th Legislature2007 Regular Session

By Senate Committee on Early Learning & K-12 Education (originally sponsored by Senators Kohl-Welles, Murray, McAuliffe, Weinstein, Shin and Rasmussen)

READ FIRST TIME 02/12/07.   

     AN ACT Relating to including cyberbullying in school district harassment prevention policies; and amending RCW 28A.300.285.


Sec. 1   RCW 28A.300.285 and 2002 c 207 s 2 are each amended to read as follows:
     (1) By August 1, 2003, each school district shall adopt or amend if necessary a policy, within the scope of its authority, that prohibits the harassment, intimidation, or bullying of any student. It is the responsibility of each school district to share this policy with parents or guardians, students, volunteers, and school employees.
     (2) "Harassment, intimidation, or bullying" means any intentional electronic, written, verbal, or physical act, including but not limited to one shown to be motivated by any characteristic in RCW 9A.36.080(3), or other distinguishing characteristics, when the intentional electronic, written, verbal, or physical act:
     (a) Physically harms a student or damages the student's property; or
     (b) Has the effect of substantially interfering with a student's education; or
     (c) Is so severe, persistent, or pervasive that it creates an intimidating or threatening educational environment; or
     (d) Has the effect of substantially disrupting the orderly operation of the school.
     Nothing in this section requires the affected student to actually possess a characteristic that is a basis for the harassment, intimidation, or bullying.
     (3) The policy should be adopted or amended through a process that includes representation of parents or guardians, school employees, volunteers, students, administrators, and community representatives. It is recommended that each such policy emphasize positive character traits and values, including the importance of civil and respectful speech and conduct, and the responsibility of students to comply with the district's policy prohibiting harassment, intimidation, or bullying.
     (4) By August 1, 2002, the superintendent of public instruction, in consultation with representatives of parents, school personnel, and other interested parties, shall provide to school districts and educational service districts a model harassment, intimidation, and bullying prevention policy and training materials on the components that should be included in any district policy. Training materials shall be disseminated in a variety of ways, including workshops and other staff developmental activities, and through the office of the superintendent of public instruction's web site, with a link to the safety center web page. On the web site:
     (a) The office of the superintendent of public instruction shall post its model policy, recommended training materials, and instructional materials;
     (b) The office of the superintendent of public instruction has the authority to update with new technologies access to this information in the safety center, to the extent resources are made available; and
     (c) Individual school districts shall have direct access to the safety center web site to post a brief summary of their policies, programs, partnerships, vendors, and instructional and training materials, and to provide a link to the school district's web site for further information.
     (5) The Washington state school directors association, with the assistance of the office of the superintendent of public instruction, shall convene an advisory committee to develop a model policy prohibiting acts of harassment, intimidation, or bullying that are conducted via electronic means by a student while on school grounds and during the school day. The policy shall include a requirement that materials meant to educate parents and students about the seriousness of cyberbullying be disseminated to parents or made available on the school district's web site. The school directors association and the advisory committee shall develop sample materials for school districts to disseminate, which shall also include information on responsible and safe internet use as well as what options are available if a student is being bullied via electronic means, including but not limited to, reporting threats to local police and when to involve school officials, the internet service provider, or phone service provider. The school directors association shall submit the model policy and sample materials, along with a recommendation for local adoption, to the governor and the legislature and shall post the model policy and sample materials on its web site by January 1, 2008. Each school district board of directors shall establish its own policy by August 1, 2008.
     (6) As used in this section, "electronic" or "electronic means" means any communication where there is the transmission of information by wire, radio, optical cable, electromagnetic, or other similar means.

         Passed by the Senate April 20, 2007.
         Passed by the House April 18, 2007.
         Approved by the Governor May 9, 2007.
         Filed in Office of Secretary of State May 11, 2007.