[Third Reprint]

ASSEMBLY, No. 2920

STATE OF NEW JERSEY

214th LEGISLATURE

 

INTRODUCED JUNE 14, 2010

 


 

Sponsored by:

Assemblyman  DAVID W. WOLFE

District 10 (Monmouth and Ocean)

Assemblywoman  JOAN M. VOSS

District 38 (Bergen)

Assemblyman  JAMES W. HOLZAPFEL

District 10 (Monmouth and Ocean)

Assemblyman  ANTHONY M. BUCCO

District 25 (Morris)

Assemblywoman  MARY PAT ANGELINI

District 11 (Monmouth)

 

Co-Sponsored by:

Assemblyman DiCicco, Assemblywomen Jasey, Lampitt, Assemblyman Chivukula, Senators Ciesla, A.R.Bucco, Weinberg, Allen, Ruiz, Bateman and Beck

 

 

 

 

SYNOPSIS

     Directs the Department of Education to develop a school district dating violence policy and requires school districts to provide dating violence education in the health curriculum.

 

CURRENT VERSION OF TEXT

     As amended by the General Assembly on February 17, 2011.

  


An Act concerning dating violence policy and education in public school districts and supplementing chapter 35 and chapter 37 of Title 18A of the New Jersey Statutes.

 

     Be It Enacted by the Senate and General Assembly of the State of New Jersey:

 

     1.    The Legislature finds and declares that: a safe and civil environment in school is necessary for students to learn and achieve high academic standards; a student who is a victim of dating violence suffers academically, and the student’s safety at school is jeopardized; and since all students have a right to learn and study in a safe, supportive environment that is free from violence, each school district should have a policy to prevent, and for responding to, incidents of dating violence, and should provide dating violence education to students in order to prevent dating violence and address incidents involving dating violence.

 

     2.    As used in this act:

     “At school” means in a classroom or anywhere on school property 3[or immediately adjacent to school property]3, on a school bus or other school-related vehicle, at an official school bus stop, or at any school-sponsored activity or event whether or not it is on school grounds.

     “Dating partner” means any person involved in an intimate association with another individual that is primarily characterized by the expectation of affectionate involvement, whether casual, serious, or long-term.

     “Dating violence” means a pattern of behavior where one person threatens to use, or actually uses physical, sexual, verbal, or emotional abuse to control a dating partner.

 

     3.    a.  The Department of Education shall establish a task force to develop a policy to address incidents of dating violence involving students at school.  The task force shall include members who have expertise in issues relating to dating violence.  The policy shall contain, at a minimum, the following components:

     (1)   a statement that dating violence will not be tolerated;

     (2)   dating violence reporting procedures;

     (3)   guidelines for responding to at-school incidents of dating violence; 2[and]2

     (4)   discipline procedures specific to at-school incidents of dating violence 2;

     (5)   warning signs of dating violence; and

     (6)   information on safe, appropriate school, family, peer, and community resources available to address dating violence2 .

     b.    Each school district shall implement 1either1 the policy developed by the department 1[, except that the district may, at its discretion, make adjustments to the policy] or a dating violence policy developed by the district.  In the event that a district determines to develop its policy, the policy shall contain, at a minimum, the components required pursuant to paragraphs (1) through 2[(4)] (6)2  of subsection a. of this section1 .

     c.     Notice of the policy implemented by the school district shall appear in any publication of the district that sets forth the comprehensive rules, procedures, and standards of conduct for schools within the district, and in any student handbook.

 

     4.    2[a.]2  The Department of Education shall 2[develop] recommend educational resources on2 dating violence 2[training materials]2 and shall post these materials on its website.  2[The dating violence training materials shall include, at a minimum, the following components:

     (1)   basic principles of dating violence;

     (2)   warning signs of dating violence; and

     (3)   information on safe, appropriate school, family, peer, and community resources available to address dating violence.

     b.    Each school district shall provide the dating violence training materials developed by the department to school district staff who have significant contact with students to ensure that they are able to appropriately respond to incidents of dating violence. Other administrators, teachers, and school district staff shall be made aware of the training materials.

     c.     Each school district shall inform the parents or guardians of students enrolled in grades 7 through 12 of the school district’s dating violence policy.  If requested, the school district shall provide the parents or guardians with the school district’s dating violence policy and relevant information.]2

 

     5.    The provisions of P.L.  , c.   (C.   ) (pending before the Legislature as this bill) shall not be interpreted to prevent a victim from seeking redress under any other available law, either civil or criminal, and does not create or alter any tort liability.

 

     6.    a.  Beginning with the 2011-2012 school year, each school district shall incorporate dating violence education that is age appropriate into the health education curriculum as part of the district’s implementation of the Core Curriculum Content Standards in Comprehensive Health and Physical Education for students in grades 7 through 12.  2[Each school district shall transmit a copy of its curriculum to the Department of Education by December 1, 2010.]2

     b.    The dating violence education shall include, but not be limited to, information on the definition of dating violence, recognizing dating violence warning signs, and the characteristics of healthy relationships.  2[The school district shall provide students with the dating violence policy developed pursuant to section 3 of P.L.   , c.  (C.    ) (pending before the Legislature as this bill).]2

     c.     To assist school districts in developing a dating violence education program, the Department of Education shall 2[review and approve the grade level learning objectives relating to dating violence and healthy relationships] recommend educational resources on dating violence2 .

     d.    Upon written request to the school principal, a parent or legal guardian of a student less than 18 years of age, shall be permitted within a reasonable period of time after the request is made, to examine the dating violence education program instruction materials developed by the school district.

     e.     As used in this section:

     2[“At school” means in a classroom or anywhere on school property or immediately adjacent to school property, on a school bus or other school-related vehicle, at an official school bus stop, or at any school-sponsored activity or event whether or not it is on school grounds.]2

     “Dating partner” means any person involved in an intimate association with another individual that is primarily characterized by the expectation of affectionate involvement, whether casual, serious, or long-term.

     “Dating violence” means a pattern of behavior where one person threatens to use, or actually uses physical, sexual, verbal, or emotional abuse to control a dating partner.

 

     7.    This act shall take effect immediately.