David’s Law – what is it and how can we help?
23rd March 2018
what is David’s Law?
Senate Bill 179 (formally known as David’s law) was named after 16-year-old David Molak, a high school student, died by suicide after being harassed through cyberbullying. This new Bill aims to bring awareness and new policies into schools to help deal with and combat cyberbullying.
what is cyberbullying?
“Cyberbullying”, as defined in David’s Law, means bullying arising from a pattern of acts or one significant act that is done through the use of any electronic communication device, including a cellular or other type of telephone, a computer, a camera, electronic mail, instant messaging, text messaging, a social media application, an Internet website, or any other Internet-based communication tool.
what does this new Bill mean for schools?
- This new Bill requires schools to notify a bullied victim’s parents of a bullying incident within 3 business days after the incident is reported
- Requires schools to have procedures for reporting bullying incidents and must include anonymous reporting for students
- Allows schools to expel students who engage in very serious bullying
- Gives strong protections from civil or criminal liabilities for those who report criminal bulling to law enforcement officials
- Includes new provisions in the law to promote mental health education
- The role of school counsellors will be expanded to include mediating interpersonal conflicts among students, including accusations of bullying
- Schools have a greater ability to investigate off campus bullying if they see it materialize in school, enabling schools and law enforcement agencies to collaborate on investigations.
- Enables law enforcement to unmask anonymous social media users who threaten others.
who is covered by this new Bill?
- Public schools
- Open-enrolment charter schools
- NOT private schools
how can Impero Education Pro help with David’s Law?
To help counsellors and teachers with this, we, alongside a number of specialist organizations and charities, produced our online safety handbook, which provides advice around a number of online dangers including bullying and trolling. You can download this here.
Our risk management features provide live thumbnail views of your devices, captures key terms typed anywhere on the network, and collates these captures as evidence; required as part of the new Bill to notify parents if their child is a victim of bullying.
Your school policy must include a method for students to report bullying anonymously and Impero Education Pro includes an anonymous reporting tool, named Confide. This enables students to report safeguarding and welfare concerns, either about themselves or another student, to a trusted member of staff.
To find out more about David’s Law, including more details about this new Bill and how you can get involved, you can visit the David’s Legacy Foundation, a non-profit organization set up by David Molak’s parents, dedicated to ending cyber-assisted bullying. To learn how Impero Education Pro can help your school to comply with David’s Law, click here to book a demo.