Title 16

Chapter 81
Right to a Safe School in Higher Education

R.I. Gen. Laws § 16-81-1

§ 16-81-1. Right to a safe school.

(a) Each student, staff member, teacher, and administrator has a right to attend and/or work in an institution of higher education which is safe and secure and which is conducive to learning, and which is free from the threat, actual or implied, of physical harm by a disruptive student. A disruptive student is a person who exhibits persistent conduct, which substantially impedes the ability of other students to learn or otherwise substantially interferes with the rights stated above, and who has failed to respond to corrective and rehabilitative measures presented by staff, teachers, or administrators.

(b) The governing body as designated by each institution of higher education may suspend or expel all students found guilty of this conduct or where a student represents a threat to those rights of students, teachers, or administrators, as described in subsection (a). Nothing in this section shall relieve the institution of higher education from following all procedures required by state and federal law regarding discipline of students with disabilities.

(c) Any decision of the designated governing body shall be subject to appeal by the student as provided by the rules and regulations of each institution of higher education. These procedures shall assure due process which shall include at a minimum time-lines for a prompt hearing; adequate notice to the student stating the rule allegedly violated and giving a specific description of the incident and evidence that will be used against the student; an opportunity prior to the hearings to review any evidence supporting the allegation; an impartial decision maker or team of decision makers; a right to confront and cross-examine witnesses; the opportunity to be represented by counsel; and a written decision setting forth clearly the grounds for the action of the school.

History of Section.
P.L. 1998, ch. 30, § 1; P.L. 1998, ch. 51, § 1.