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Georgia Laws

Georgia

Bullying/Harassment
SB250 (2010) describes bullying as an act that occurs on school property, on school vehicles, at designated bus stops, or at school related functions or activities, or by use of data or software that is accessed through a computer, computer system, computer network or other electronic technology. Definitions of bullying are included in the statute, including written, verbal and physical acts which a reasonable person would perceive as being intended to threaten, harass, or intimidate that (1) causes another person substantial physical harm or visible bodily harm, (2) has the effect of substantially disrupting the orderly operation of the school or interfering with a student’s education, or (3) is so severe, persistent, or pervasive that it creates an intimidating or threatening educational environment. It requires each local board of education to adopt policies prohibiting bullying in grades 6-12 and include them in the student code of conduct. It requires local board policies to require a student that has committed bullying three times in a school year to be assigned to an alternative school. Local school boards must adopt a policy requiring notification to the parent, guardian or other person in charge of a student of a bullying offense as a victim or perpetrator. 

SB250 (2010) requires the Department of Education to develop a model policy regarding bullying. The policy must prohibit bullying, require reporting of incidents and procedures for investigation, an age-appropriate range of consequences, procedures for providing information on a bullying activity, prohibition for retaliation, and immunity from liability for those acting in good faith.

State Board of Education Rule 160-4-8-.15 requires local school boards to include in their student codes of conduct the prohibition of bullying and sexual harassment and verbal assault that constitutes sexual harassment of other students.

Cyber Bullying
SB250 (2010) includes in its description of bullying acts that occur by use of data or software that is accessed through a computer, computer system, computer network or other electronic technology. Bullying is defined in the statute, and local school boards are required to adopt policies for grades 6-12 that prohibit bullying of a student by another student and include them in the student code of conduct.

Hazing
Code 16-5-51 makes it unlawful for any person to haze any student in connection with or as a condition or precondition of gaining acceptance, membership, office or other status in a school organization.

Source: National Association of State Boards of Education
Last Updated: 7/1/2010

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