Pennsylvania School Climate Policy

                                                    PENNSYLVANIA 

500 school districts in Pennsylvania serve 3,287 public schools. During the 2018-2019 school year, there were 1,722,461 students enrolled in public schools. Roughly 54% of students are eligible for free or reduced-price lunches. Pennsylvania has a policy directly addressing school climate surveying, where the Office for Safe Schools of the Pennsylvania Department of Education releases a school climate survey to schools. Other policies that address school climate include bullying prevention, school safety, and disaster planning, character education programs, youth suicide awareness and prevention, special education services, and protection of handicapped students. Pennsylvania has a specific policy addressing dating violence where schools are aided in establishing policies on how to handle dating violence in students and training for staff. There is also a policy that states that there should be developed a trauma-informed approach plan to be used by school entities. There is also a policy where school entities shall provide training to staff on trauma-informed education based on evidence-based programs. 

Safety

PA School Climate Survey Site.

The Office for Safe Schools of the Pennsylvania Department of Education announces the release of school climate surveys to all school entities in the Commonwealth. The surveys are intended to provide schools with formative and summative climate data for use with needs assessments, program development and short- and long-term planning.

https://paschoolclimatesurvey.org/wfAbout.aspx


Who does this protect? Administrators, Staff

Does this policy include ways for families to be involved? Yes

Definitions of harassment, bullying, and cyberbullying and the behaviors associated with these actions in Pennsylvania policies.

  • Pennsylvania Consolidated Statutes Title 18 Section 2709. Harassment.

https://law.justia.com/codes/pennsylvania/2019/title-18/chapter-27/section-2709/

  • Pennsylvania Unconsolidated Statutes 1949 Act 14. Article XIII-A. Safe Schools. Section 1303.1-A. Policy Related to Bullying.

https://www.legis.state.pa.us/cfdocs/legis/LI/uconsCheck.cfm?txtType=HTM&yr=1949&sessInd=0&smthLwInd=0&act=14&chpt=13A&sctn=3&subsctn=1

 Pennsylvania asks schools to develop and implement procedures to prevent bullying and harassment behavior and the consequences of such behavior. Policies also explain that procedures are needed for reporting an incidence of bullying and investigating it.

  • Pennsylvania Unconsolidated Statutes 1949 Act 14. Article XIII-A. Safe Schools. Section 1303.1-A. Policy Related to Bullying.

https://www.legis.state.pa.us/cfdocs/legis/LI/uconsCheck.cfm?txtType=HTM&yr=1949&sessInd=0&smthLwInd=0&act=14&chpt=13A&sctn=3&subsctn=1

  • Pennsylvania Unconsolidated Statutes 1949 Act 14. Article XIII-A. Safe Schools. Section 1303-A. Reporting.

https://www.legis.state.pa.us/cfdocs/legis/LI/uconsCheck.cfm?txtType=HTM&yr=1949&sessInd=0&smthLwInd=0&act=14&chpt=13A&sctn=3&subsctn=0

Pennsylvania anti-bullying laws cover incidents that occur on school property, and school-sponsored events/activities but not the off-school property.

  • Pennsylvania Unconsolidated Statutes 1949 Act 14. Article XIII-A. Safe Schools. Section 1303.1-A. Policy Related to Bullying.

https://www.legis.state.pa.us/cfdocs/legis/LI/uconsCheck.cfm?txtType=HTM&yr=1949&sessInd=0&smthLwInd=0&act=14&chpt=13A&sctn=3&subsctn=1


Who does this protect? Students, Teachers

Does this policy include ways for families to be involved? No

Pennsylvania schools need to develop plans for dealing with emergencies.

  • Pennsylvania Consolidated Statutes Title 35. Section 7701. Duties concerning disaster prevention.

https://law.justia.com/codes/pennsylvania/2019/title-35/chapter-77/section-7701/

  • Pennsylvania Unconsolidated Statutes 1949 Act 13. Section 1303-B. School safety and security assessment criteria

https://www.legis.state.pa.us/cfdocs/legis/LI/uconsCheck.cfm?txtType=HTM&yr=1949&sessInd=0&smthLwInd=0&act=014&chpt=13B

  • The Pennsylvania Code § 10.24. Emergency and nonemergency response and preparedness. 

https://regulations.justia.com/states/pennsylvania/title-22/part-i/subpart-a/chapter-10/notification-of-incidents/section-10-24/

Pennsylvania Unconsolidated Statutes 1949 Act 13. Section 1309-B. School safety and security coordinator.

The school safety and security coordinator shall oversee all school police officers, school resource officers, school security guards, and policies and procedures in the school entity and report directly to the chief school administrator.

https://www.legis.state.pa.us/cfdocs/legis/LI/uconsCheck.cfm?txtType=HTM&yr=1949&sessInd=0&smthLwInd=0&act=014&chpt=13B

 Pennsylvania Unconsolidated Statutes 1949 Act 14. Article XIII-A. Safe Schools. Section 1302-A. Office for Safe Schools.

The office shall have the power and duty to;

  • Coordinate antiviolence efforts between school, professional, parental, governmental, law enforcement, and community organizations and associations.
  • Collect, develop and disseminate information, policies, strategies, and other information to assist in the development of programs to impact school violence.

https://www.legis.state.pa.us/cfdocs/legis/LI/uconsCheck.cfm?txtType=HTM&yr=1949&sessInd=0&smthLwInd=0&act=14&chpt=13A&sctn=2&subsctn=0&mobile_choice=suppress

Annually, schools and custodial child care facilities shall conduct at least one disaster response or emergency preparedness plan drill. Each school shall conduct one security drill within ninety days of the commencement of the school year. After ninety days from the commencement of the school year, each school may conduct two school security drills in place of two fire drills.

  • Pennsylvania Consolidated Statutes Title 35. Section 7701. Duties concerning disaster prevention.

https://www.legis.state.pa.us/cfdocs/legis/LI/consCheck.cfm?txtType=HTM&ttl=35&div=0&chpt=77&sctn=1&subsctn=0

  • Pennsylvania Unconsolidated Statutes 1949 Act 14. Section 1517. Fire and Emergency Evacuation Drills.

https://www.legis.state.pa.us/cfdocs/legis/LI/uconsCheck.cfm?txtType=HTM&yr=1949&sessInd=0&smthLwInd=0&act=14&chpt=15&sctn=17&subsctn=0

A school police officer is a law enforcement officer employed by a school entity or nonpublic school whose responsibilities, including work hours, are established by the school entity or nonpublic school. Powers and duties include enforcing good order in school buildings, on school buses, and on school grounds in the respective school entities or nonpublic schools. They may carry firearms on school property if they have completed basic training required by Municipal Police Officers’ Education and Training Commission or graduated from State Police Academy.

  • Pennsylvania Unconsolidated Statutes 1949 Act 13. Section 1301-C. Definitions.

https://www.legis.state.pa.us/cfdocs/legis/li/uconsCheck.cfm?txtType=HTM&yr=2019&sessInd=0&act=0067.&chpt=000.&subchpt=000.&sctn=001.&subsctn=000

  • Pennsylvania Unconsolidated Statutes 1949 Act 13. Section 1306-C. Powers and duties.

https://www.legis.state.pa.us/cfdocs/legis/LI/uconsCheck.cfm?txtType=HTM&yr=1949&sessInd=0&smthLwInd=0&act=014&chpt=13B

  • Pennsylvania Unconsolidated Statutes 1949 Act 13. Section 1314-C. School security guards.

https://www.legis.state.pa.us/cfdocs/Legis/LI/uconsCheck.cfm?txtType=HTM&yr=2019&sessInd=0&smthLwInd=0&act=0091

Pennsylvania Consolidated Statutes Title 18. Section 912 Possession of a weapon on school property.

Students and employees are not allowed to possess weapons or firearms on school property.

https://www.legis.state.pa.us/cfdocs/legis/LI/consCheck.cfm?txtType=HTM&ttl=18&div=0&chpt=9&sctn=12&subsctn=0


Who does this protect? Students, Staff

Does this policy include ways for families to be involved? No

Pennsylvania Unconsolidated Statutes 1949 Act 14. Section 1502-E. Character education programs.

The program may include and teach the basic civil values and character traits like trustworthiness, respect, responsibility, fairness, etc. In addition, it can teach the importance of a service ethic and community outreach.

https://www.legis.state.pa.us/cfdocs/legis/LI/uconsCheck.cfm?txtType=HTM&yr=1949&sessInd=0&smthLwInd=0&act=14&chpt=15E&sctn=2&subsctn=0

Pennsylvania Unconsolidated Statutes 1949 Act 13. Section 1303-B. School safety and security assessment criteria.

The assessment includes the availability of student assistance programs and behavioral health professionals to assist, a review of recommendations by behavioral and physical health professionals, and consideration of their recommendations.

https://www.legis.state.pa.us/cfdocs/legis/li/uconsCheck.cfm?txtType=HTM&yr=2018&sessInd=0&act=0044.&chpt=000.&subchpt=000.&sctn=003.&subsctn=000.

 Pennsylvania Unconsolidated Statutes 2010 Act 104. Section 1553. Dating Violence Education.

Develop, within six months of the effective date of this section, a model dating violence policy to assist school districts in developing policies for dating violence reporting and response.

https://www.legis.state.pa.us/cfdocs/legis/li/uconsCheck.cfm?txtType=HTM&yr=2010&sessInd=0&act=0104.&chpt=000.&subchpt=000.&sctn=017.&subsctn=000.

The Pennsylvania Code § 10.2. Definitions.

A school-wide, evidence-based, and data-driven approach to improving school behavior that seeks to reduce unnecessary student disciplinary actions and promotes a climate of greater productivity, safety, and learning.

https://regulations.justia.com/states/pennsylvania/title-22/part-i/subpart-a/chapter-10/general-provisions/section-10-2/

Pennsylvania Unconsolidated Statutes 2014 Act 71 Section 1526 Youth Suicide Awareness and Prevention.

Each school will Adopt an age-appropriate youth suicide awareness and prevention policy, inform each school entity employee and the parent or legal guardian of each student enrolled in the school entity of such policy and post such policy on the school entity’s publicly accessible Internet website.

https://www.legis.state.pa.us/cfdocs/Legis/LI/uconsCheck.cfm?txtType=HTM&yr=2014&sessInd=0&smthLwInd=0&act=71

 Pennsylvania Unconsolidated Statutes 1949 Act 13. Section 1311-B. Trauma-informed approach.

The committee shall develop a model trauma-informed approach plan that shall be used by a school entity.

https://www.legis.state.pa.us/cfdocs/legis/LI/uconsCheck.cfm?txtType=HTM&yr=1949&sessInd=0&smthLwInd=0&act=014&chpt=13B


Who does this protect? Students, Staff

Does this policy include ways for families to be involved? Yes

Teaching/Learning

Pennsylvania provides students with disabilities the accommodations and resources they need to have an appropriate education.

  • Pennsylvania Code Title 22 Chapter 14 Special education services and programs.

https://regulations.justia.com/states/pennsylvania/title-22/part-i/subpart-a/chapter-14/

  • Pennsylvania Code Title 22 Chapter 16 Special education for gifted students.

https://regulations.justia.com/states/pennsylvania/title-22/part-i/subpart-a/chapter-16/


Who does this protect? Students, Students with disabilities

Does this policy include ways for families to be involved? Yes

Pennsylvania Unconsolidated Statutes 1929 Section 582-1. Definitions (Adm. Code § 2201-B).

Provides a definition of what community service is and what the tasks students engage in need to accomplish.

https://casetext.com/statute/pennsylvania-statutes/statutes-unconsolidated/title-71-ps-state-government/part-i-the-administrative-codes-and-related-provisions/chapter-2-the-administrative-code-of-1929/article-xxii-b-coordination-of-commonwealth-community-service-programs/section-582-1-definitions-adm-code-section-2201-b

Pennsylvania Unconsolidated Statutes 1929 Section 582-3. Responsibilities of office.

PennSERVE is established to make community service the common expectation and experience of all Pennsylvanians with a special concentration on Pennsylvania’s young people. It will work to renew the ethic of civic responsibility in Pennsylvania and to involve and enroll young people in service opportunities that will benefit Pennsylvania while offering our young people literacy skills and improved job skills.

https://casetext.com/statute/pennsylvania-statutes/statutes-unconsolidated/title-71-ps-state-government/part-i-the-administrative-codes-and-related-provisions/chapter-2-the-administrative-code-of-1929/article-xxii-b-coordination-of-commonwealth-community-service-programs/section-582-3-responsibilities-of-office-adm-code-section-2203-b

Pennsylvania Unconsolidated Statutes 1929 Section 582-7. Community Service Advisory Board (Adm. Code § 2207-B).

The board shall encourage youth to participate in community service, shall disseminate information concerning community service, and shall monitor the effectiveness and geographical distribution of community service programs.

https://casetext.com/statute/pennsylvania-statutes/statutes-unconsolidated/title-71-ps-state-government/part-i-the-administrative-codes-and-related-provisions/chapter-2-the-administrative-code-of-1929/article-xxii-b-coordination-of-commonwealth-community-service-programs/section-582-7-community-service-advisory-board-adm-code-section-2207-b


Who does this protect? Students

Does this policy include ways for families to be involved? No

Interpersonal Relationships

 

There is currently no policy surrounding Respect and Diversity in Pennsylvania. For more information on school climate please visit us at Services – National School Climate Center

Pennsylvania Unconsolidated Statutes 1949 Act 13. Section 1310-B. School safety and security training.

School entities shall provide their employees with mandatory training on issues like: 

  • Situational awareness
  • Trauma-informed approaches
  • Behavioral health awareness
    • Suicide and bullying awareness
    • Substance use awareness
    • Emergency training drills, including fire, natural disaster, active shooter, a hostage situation, and bomb threat

    https://www.legis.state.pa.us/cfdocs/Legis/LI/uconsCheck.cfm?txtType=HTM&yr=2019&sessInd=0&smthLwInd=0&act=0018.


    Pennsylvania Unconsolidated Statutes 1949 Act 14. Section 1503-E. Department duties and powers.

  • Identify and analyze effective programs and practices and related professional development for professional educators and provide such information to a school district upon request of the board of directors of the school district.

https://www.legis.state.pa.us/cfdocs/legis/LI/uconsCheck.cfm?txtType=HTM&yr=1949&sessInd=0&smthLwInd=0&act=14&chpt=15E&sctn=3&subsctn=0


Pennsylvania Unconsolidated Statutes 2014 Act 71 Section 1526 Youth Suicide Awareness and Prevention.

  • Include in the professional development plan four hours of training in youth suicide awareness and prevention every five years for professional educators in school buildings serving students in grades six through twelve.

https://www.legis.state.pa.us/cfdocs/Legis/LI/uconsCheck.cfm?txtType=HTM&yr=2014&sessInd=0&smthLwInd=0&act=71

Pennsylvania Unconsolidated Statutes 1949 Act 13. Section 1311-B. Trauma-informed approach.

  • Professional development and support for school staff which fosters a culture in the school entity and community that is informed about how to understand, recognize and respond to trauma and address the impact of trauma on students as a secondary impact on school employees.

https://www.legis.state.pa.us/cfdocs/legis/LI/uconsCheck.cfm?txtType=HTM&yr=1949&sessInd=0&smthLwInd=0&act=014&chpt=13B

Pennsylvania Unconsolidated Statutes 1949 Act 12. Section 1205.7. Trauma-informed education.

  • School entities shall provide school employees with training on trauma-informed approaches based on evidence-based or evidence-informed programs that are tailored to the local community and reflect current best practices related to trauma-informed approaches.

https://www.legis.state.pa.us/cfdocs/Legis/LI/uconsCheck.cfm?txtType=HTM&yr=2019&sessInd=0&smthLwInd=0&act=0018


Who does this protect? Staff, Students

Does this policy include ways for families to be involved? No

Pennsylvania Unconsolidated Statutes 1949 Act 14. Section 1502-E. Character education programs.

The program may include and teach the basic civil values and character traits like trustworthiness, respect, responsibility, fairness, etc. In addition, it can teach the importance of a service ethic and community outreach.

https://www.legis.state.pa.us/cfdocs/legis/LI/uconsCheck.cfm?txtType=HTM&yr=1949&sessInd=0&smthLwInd=0&act=14&chpt=15E&sctn=2&subsctn=0

Pennsylvania Unconsolidated Statutes 1949 Act 13. Section 1303-B. School safety and security assessment criteria.

The assessment includes the availability of student assistance programs and behavioral health professionals to assist, a review of recommendations by behavioral and physical health professionals, and consideration of their recommendations.

https://www.legis.state.pa.us/cfdocs/legis/li/uconsCheck.cfm?txtType=HTM&yr=2018&sessInd=0&act=0044.&chpt=000.&subchpt=000.&sctn=003.&subsctn=000.

 

Pennsylvania Unconsolidated Statutes 2010 Act 104. Section 1553. Dating Violence Education.

Develop, within six months of the effective date of this section, a model dating violence policy to assist school districts in developing policies for dating violence reporting and response.

https://www.legis.state.pa.us/cfdocs/legis/li/uconsCheck.cfm?txtType=HTM&yr=2010&sessInd=0&act=0104.&chpt=000.&subchpt=000.&sctn=017.&subsctn=000.

The Pennsylvania Code § 10.2. Definitions.

A school-wide, evidence-based, and data-driven approach to improving school behavior that seeks to reduce unnecessary student disciplinary actions and promotes a climate of greater productivity, safety, and learning.

https://regulations.justia.com/states/pennsylvania/title-22/part-i/subpart-a/chapter-10/general-provisions/section-10-2/

 Pennsylvania Unconsolidated Statutes 2014 Act 71 Section 1526 Youth Suicide Awareness and Prevention.

Each school will Adopt an age-appropriate youth suicide awareness and prevention policy, inform each school entity employee and the parent or legal guardian of each student enrolled in the school entity of such policy and post such policy on the school entity’s publicly accessible Internet website.

https://www.legis.state.pa.us/cfdocs/Legis/LI/uconsCheck.cfm?txtType=HTM&yr=2014&sessInd=0&smthLwInd=0&act=71

 Pennsylvania Unconsolidated Statutes 1949 Act 13. Section 1311-B. Trauma-informed approach.

The committee shall develop a model trauma-informed approach plan that shall be used by a school entity.

https://www.legis.state.pa.us/cfdocs/legis/LI/uconsCheck.cfm?txtType=HTM&yr=1949&sessInd=0&smthLwInd=0&act=014&chpt=13B


Who does this protect? Students

Does this policy include ways for families to be involved? Yes

Institutional Environments

Pennsylvania Unconsolidated Statutes 2016 Act 86. Section 510.2. Publication of Rules Regulations and Policies.

The board of school directors of a school district will post on its website policies or regulations that school districts need to adopt about parental involvement policy for parents and guardians of students participating.

https://www.legis.state.pa.us/cfdocs/legis/li/uconsCheck.cfm?yr=2016&sessind=0&act=86

Pennsylvania Unconsolidated Statutes 2005 Act 55. Section 116. Technical Assistance and Information Provided by the Department of Education.

The Department of Education shall establish a clearinghouse of information based on scientific research when it comes to parental involvement programs and policies.

https://www.legis.state.pa.us/cfdocs/legis/li/uconsCheck.cfm?yr=2005&sessInd=0&act=55


Who does this protect? Students, Parents

Does this policy include ways for families to be involved? No

Pennsylvania schools need to develop plans for dealing with emergencies.

  • Pennsylvania Consolidated Statutes Title 35. Section 7701. Duties concerning disaster prevention.

https://law.justia.com/codes/pennsylvania/2019/title-35/chapter-77/section-7701/

  • The Pennsylvania Code § 10.24. Emergency and nonemergency response and preparedness. 

https://regulations.justia.com/states/pennsylvania/title-22/part-i/subpart-a/chapter-10/notification-of-incidents/section-10-24/

Pennsylvania Unconsolidated Statutes 1949 Act 13. Section 1309-B. School safety and security coordinator.

The school safety and security coordinator shall oversee all school police officers, school resource officers, school security guards, and policies and procedures in the school entity and report directly to the chief school administrator

https://www.legis.state.pa.us/cfdocs/legis/LI/uconsCheck.cfm?txtType=HTM&yr=1949&sessInd=0&smthLwInd=0&act=014&chpt=13B

Pennsylvania Unconsolidated Statutes 1949 Act 14. Article XIII-A. Safe Schools. Section 1302-A. Office for Safe Schools.

The office shall have the power and duty to;

  • Coordinate antiviolence efforts between school, professional, parental, governmental, law enforcement, and community organizations and associations.
  • Collect, develop and disseminate information, policies, strategies, and other information to assist in the development of programs to impact school violence.

https://www.legis.state.pa.us/cfdocs/legis/LI/uconsCheck.cfm?txtType=HTM&yr=1949&sessInd=0&smthLwInd=0&act=14&chpt=13A&sctn=2&subsctn=0&mobile_choice=suppress

Annually, schools and custodial child care facilities shall conduct at least one disaster response or emergency preparedness plan drill. Each school shall conduct one security drill within ninety days of the commencement of the school year. After ninety days from the commencement of the school year, each school may conduct two school security drills in place of two fire drills.

  • Pennsylvania Consolidated Statutes Title 35. Section 7701. Duties concerning disaster prevention.

https://www.legis.state.pa.us/cfdocs/legis/LI/consCheck.cfm?txtType=HTM&ttl=35&div=0&chpt=77&sctn=1&subsctn=0

  • Pennsylvania Unconsolidated Statutes 1949 Act 14. Section 1517. Fire and Emergency Evacuation Drills.

https://www.legis.state.pa.us/cfdocs/legis/LI/uconsCheck.cfm?txtType=HTM&yr=1949&sessInd=0&smthLwInd=0&act=14&chpt=15&sctn=17&subsctn=0

A school police officer is a law enforcement officer employed by a school entity or nonpublic school whose responsibilities, including work hours, are established by the school entity or nonpublic school. Powers and duties include enforcing good order in school buildings, on school buses, and on school grounds in the respective school entities or nonpublic schools. They may carry firearms on school property if they have completed basic training. Required by Municipal Police Officers’ Education and Training Commission or graduated from State Police Academy

  • Pennsylvania Unconsolidated Statutes 1949 Act 13. Section 1301-C. Definitions.

https://www.legis.state.pa.us/cfdocs/legis/li/uconsCheck.cfm?txtType=HTM&yr=2019&sessInd=0&act=0067.&chpt=000.&subchpt=000.&sctn=001.&subsctn=000

  • Pennsylvania Unconsolidated Statutes 1949 Act 13. Section 1306-C. Powers and duties.

https://www.legis.state.pa.us/cfdocs/legis/LI/uconsCheck.cfm?txtType=HTM&yr=1949&sessInd=0&smthLwInd=0&act=014&chpt=13B

  • Pennsylvania Unconsolidated Statutes 1949 Act 13. Section 1314-C. School security guards.

https://www.legis.state.pa.us/cfdocs/Legis/LI/uconsCheck.cfm?txtType=HTM&yr=2019&sessInd=0&smthLwInd=0&act=0091

 Pennsylvania Consolidated Statutes Title 18. Section 912 Possession of a weapon on school property.

Students and employees are not allowed to possess weapons or firearms on school property

https://www.legis.state.pa.us/cfdocs/legis/LI/consCheck.cfm?txtType=HTM&ttl=18&div=0&chpt=9&sctn=12&subsctn=0


Who does this protect? Students, Staff

Does this policy include ways for families to be involved? No

Pennsylvania Code Title 22 Chapter 15- Protected handicapped students.

Pennsylvania makes it clear that it is school districts’ responsibility to comply with federal laws to provide the best accommodations in school for students with mental, physical, or health impairments. Not only in education but in extracurricular activities too.

 https://regulations.justia.com/states/pennsylvania/title-22/part-i/subpart-a/chapter-15/


Who does this protect? Students with disabilities

Does this policy include ways for families to be involved? yes

Social Media

 

There is currently no policy surrounding Social Media in the state of Pennsylvania. For more information on school climate please visit us at Services – National School Climate Center

There is currently no policy surrounding Leadership in Pennsylvania. For more information on school climate please visit us at Services – National School

There is currently no policy surrounding Professional Relationships in Pennsylvania. For more information on school climate please visit us at Services – National School

Sources include: nasbe.org and childtrends.org