Although the Anti-Bullying Bill of Rights Act is not specific about statutory penalties, it does mention that school districts may be penalized for non-compliance. For instance, the New Jersey Law Against Discrimination (NJLAD) can charge school districts with penalties up to $10,000 or more, depending on the incident. Tom’s River was fined $10,000 in March of 2013 by the NJLAD.
Legal Fees & Settlements
Costs to cover legal expenses and settlements can be financially devastating to a school district, especially for particularly serious or long-lasting cases. Here are several examples covered in the news over recent years:
- $4,200,000 – Ramsey School District, 2012, New Jersey
- $270,000 – Anoka-Hennepin, 2012, Minnesota
- $220,000 – Sycamore High School, 2012, Ohio
- $130,000 – Emerson School District, 2012, New Jersey
- $68,000 – Tom’s River, 2013, New Jersey
- $25,000 – Menifee Union School District, 2013, California
Loss of License – Some educators who do not comply with anti-bullying laws can lose their licenses.
Poor Grade – The state grades school districts on their ABR compliance and have to publish it on the school district website. A bad grade can bring on negative attention from parents and the community in general.
Lower enrollment – As a result of a bad grade or negative press, school districts might see their enrollment decrease if parents decide they don’t want their children to attend a school that cannot comply with bullying laws.
How HIBster can help
When HIBster collects a reported incident, school administrators are notified immediately. The incident is stored in the system where users can review it, manage it, add investigation results and statements, and eventually report it to the Board of Education. This process prevents anyone from accusing the school district of being negligent. HIBster provides secure proof that administrators are doing everything within their power to resolve incidents.