Safe Schools

   
OVERVIEW
   
 

Passed by the Legislature in 2000, Act 113 (the "Safe Schools Bill"), addresses the importance of providing safe and healthy learning environments for all Vermont students. Among its many provisions, the law clarifies disciplinary procedures in cases in which a student's misconduct directly harms the welfare of a school. It also strengthens criminal laws regarding possession of weapons on school property or buses, and directs the commissioner of education to develop teacher training programs that address disruptive student behavior.

Act 120, also passed in 2000, focuses on school hazing and harassment policies and created a school quality standard that evaluates schools on their ability to provide safe, civil, orderly, and positive learning environments. The work of Act 120 is carried out through these programs:

Safe Schools Program
This program is an essential part of the agency's effort to implement initiatives to reduce the frequency of problems that impede student learning and achievement. The team works with school communities to help create safe and healthy learning environments with regard to bullying, hazing, harassment and discrimination that may relate to race, gender, class, age, intelligence, marital status, sexual orientation, disability or religion. In addition, prevention and intervention technical assistance/training programs work to strengthen school climate and reduce disruptions caused by challenging student behaviors. The program also assists schools in developing schoolwide disciplinary plans, procedures and policies.

Building Effective Strategies for Teaching Students with Behavioral Challenges (BEST) Project
The BEST Project is designed to help schools develop effective strategies to respond to challenging student behaviors. The agency and its interagency partners provide training and technical assistance to increase schools' capacities to implement strategies to benefit entire school communities.

Use the following links to view available:

   
LINKS TO CURRENTLY AVAILABLE INFORMATION
   
 

Building Effective Strategies for Teaching (BEST) Students with Behavioral Challenges Project
The BEST Project is designed to help schools develop effective strategies to respond to challenging student behaviors. Use the link above to view the Web site.

U.S. Department of Education

Vermont Human Rights Commission
All schools are required to have a policy that prevents and prohibits hazing, harassment and discrimination. If you - a student - believe that you have been the victim of harassment or discrimination, a complaint should be filed, in accordance with the school policy, with the appropriate school official. Students may also file a complaint with the Vermont Human Rights Commission which investigates violations of Vermont's public accommodation law.

Questions?

Charles Johnson at charles.johnson@state.vt.us or (802) 479-1336

Page Last Updated on March 21, 2014