DID YOU KNOW THAT......
In 2006 the House voted for a bill that would require local school districts and charter schools to create
policies allowing school officials to more easily search students for drugs and weapons, over the objections of school administrators, school boards, parents and student groups? Although Democrats complained during debate that the bill (HR 5295) is unnecessary, they did not obstruct its passage by voice vote. A Democratic aide said party leaders did not force a roll call vote because they knew that the measure had enough support to pass by a two-thirds majority and because it is expected to go nowhere in the Senate.
9-19-06, House Agreed to Bill by Voice Vote
Referred to Senate
- Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,
SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.
- This Act may be cited as the `Student and Teacher Safety Act of 2006'.
SEC. 2. FINDINGS.
- Congress finds the following:
- (1) The United States Department of Education's National Center for Education Statistics reported in the 2005 Indicators of School Crime and Safety that in 2003 seventeen percent of students in grades 9-12 reported they carried a weapon. Six percent reported having carried a weapon on school grounds.
- (2) The same survey reported that 29 percent of all students in grades 9-12 reported that someone offered, sold, or gave them an illegal drug on school property within the last 12 months.
- (3) The United States Constitution's Fourth Amendment guarantees `the right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures'.
- (4) That while the Supreme Court affirmed the Fourth Amendment's application to students in public schools in New Jersey vs. TLO (1985), the Court held that searches of students by school officials do not require warrants issued by judges showing probable cause. The Court will ordinarily hold that such a search is permissible if--
- (A) there are reasonable grounds for suspecting the search will reveal evidence that the student violated the law or school rules; and
- (B) the measures used to conduct the search are reasonably related to the search's objectives, without being excessively intrusive in light of the student's age, sex, and nature of the offense.
- (5) The Supreme Court held in Board of Education of Independent Sch. Dist. 92 of Pottawatomie County vs. Earls (2002) that random drug testing of students who were participating in extracurricular activities was reasonable and did not violate the Fourth Amendment. The Court stated that such search policies effectively serve the School Districts interest in protecting its students' health and safety.
SEC. 3. SEARCHES BASED ON REASONABLE SUSPICION.
- (a) In General- Each local educational agency shall have in effect throughout the jurisdiction of the agency policies that ensure that a search described in subsection (b) is deemed reasonable and permissible.
- (b) Searches Covered- A search referred to in subsection (a) is a search by a full-time teacher or school official, acting on any reasonable suspicion based on professional experience and judgment, of any minor student on the grounds of any public school, if the search is conducted to ensure that classrooms, school buildings, school property and students remain free from the threat of all weapons, dangerous materials, or illegal narcotics. The measures used to conduct any search must be reasonably related to the search's objectives, without being excessively intrusive in light of the student's age, sex, and the nature of the offense.
SEC. 4. ENCOURAGEMENT TO PROTECT STUDENTS AND TEACHERS.
- (a) In General- A local educational agency that fails to comply with section 3 shall not, during the period of noncompliance, receive any Safe and Drug Free School funds after fiscal year 2008.
- (b) Definition- In this section, the term `Safe and Drug Free School funds' includes any funds under Part A of Title IV of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965.
Passed the House of Representatives September 19, 2006.
To protect students and teachers.
ENDKNOW YOUR RIGHTS!!!!!