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Bill aims to crack down on teacher, student electronic communication

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) – A bill that aims to change how school employees communicate with students is making its way through the State Senate.

Senate Bill 266, written by State Senator Dennis Kruse (R – District 14), requires any type of electronic communication between an employee or volunteer for a school and a student be simultaneously sent to the student’s parents and the principal. The principal would be required to save the messages for at least two years.

Each year, school systems would have to notify parents of the saving of electronic communications, tell parents they may choose to receive a simultaneous transmission of electronic communications and inform parents of their right to view saved electronic communications.

School systems would also be required to adopt a policy regarding electronic communications between school workers/volunteers and students. Any school worker/volunteer who violates the policy would face a Class A misdemeanor (which carries a potential maximum punishment of up to one year in prison and a $5,000 fine). Any student who violates the policy would be subject to disciplinary action by the school the student attends.

If the bill is approved it would go into effect on July 1, 2015. Click here to read more on Senate Bill 266.

Recently, a former school coach was accused of having an inappropriate text conversation with a student. Click here to read more on that story.