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      RS 17:416.1     


§416.1. Discipline of students; additional disciplinary authority

            A. In addition to the specific disciplinary measures authorized in R.S. 17:416 teachers, principals, and administrators of the public schools may, subject to any rules as may be adopted by the parish or city school board, employ other reasonable disciplinary and corrective measures to maintain order in the schools; provided, however, that nothing in this Section shall be construed as superseding the provisions of R.S. 17:416 relative to the disciplining of students, suspensions, and expulsions.

            B.(1) The use of any form of corporal punishment is prohibited in any public school unless the student's parent or legal guardian provides written consent for the use of corporal punishment in a document created by the state Department of Education solely for such purpose. Such consent applies only to the school year in which it is given. No form of corporal punishment shall be administered to a student with an exceptionality as defined in R.S. 17:1942 or to a student who has been determined to be eligible for services under Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and has an Individual Accommodation Plan. However, the parent or legal guardian of a student who is gifted and talented and has no other exceptionality may authorize the use of corporal punishment as otherwise provided by this Paragraph.

            (2) Corporal punishment means using physical force to discipline a student, with or without an object. Corporal punishment includes hitting, paddling, striking, spanking, slapping, or any other physical force that causes pain or physical discomfort.

            (3) Corporal punishment does not include:

            (a) The use of reasonable and necessary physical restraint of a student to protect the student or others from bodily harm or to obtain possession of a weapon or other dangerous object from a student.

            (b) The use of seclusion and restraint as provided in R.S. 17:416.21.

            C. Should any teacher, principal, or administrator in the public school system be sued for damages by any student, the parent of any student or other persons qualified to bring suit on behalf of such student based upon the act or omission of such teacher, principal, or administrator in the directing of and disciplining of school children under their care and supervision, it shall be the responsibility of the school board employing such teacher, principal, or administrator to provide such defendant with a legal defense to such suit including reasonable attorney fees, investigatory costs, and other related expenses. Should any such teacher, principal, or administrator be cast in judgment for damages in such suit, it shall be the obligation of the school board employing such defendant to indemnify him fully against such judgment including all principal, interest, and costs. Nothing in this Section shall require a school board to indemnify a teacher, principal, or administrator against a judgment wherein there is a specific decree in the judgment that the action of the teacher, principal, or administrator was malicious, and willfully and deliberately intended to cause bodily harm.

            D.(1) In addition to the specific disciplinary measures authorized in R.S. 17:416, a principal or headmaster at a public or private school shall notify the Department of Public Safety and Corrections, office of motor vehicles, of any student between the ages of fourteen and eighteen who has been subjected to a disciplinary action as provided in Paragraph (2) of this Subsection.

            (2) As used in this Subsection, "disciplinary action" means an expulsion or suspension from school for ten or more consecutive school days or an assignment to an alternative educational setting for ten or more consecutive school days in accordance with any policy of the school or of the local public school board, limited to expulsions, suspensions, and assignments to alternative educational settings for infractions involving the sale or possession of drugs, alcohol, or any other illegal substance, the possession of a firearm, or an infraction involving assault or battery on a member of the school faculty or staff. The governing authority of any public elementary or secondary school shall promulgate rules and regulations to implement the provisions of this Section.

            (3) Any such student who has been subjected to a disciplinary action as provided in Paragraph (2) of this Subsection shall have his driver's license for the operation of a motor vehicle suspended for a period of one year, in accordance with the provisions of R.S. 32:431. The terms "license" or "driver's license" shall include a Class "E" learner's license and intermediate license as provided for in R.S. 32:407.

            Added by Acts 1975, No. 559, §1; Acts 1988, No. 898, §1; Acts 2003, No. 732, §1, eff. Jan. 1, 2004; Acts 2017, No. 266, §1; Acts 2023, No. 268, §1.

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