In the past month, there have been several incidents in Caddo and Bossier schools where a student has committed an assault or battery against a teacher. While these events are certainly disturbing, what is even more disturbing is that, in many cases, the school administration has allowed the student to return to the campus. This is counter to Louisiana law. Please be advised that under Louisiana Revised Statue 17:416, any student formally accused of committing assault or battery against a school employee must be immediately suspended and is not allowed to return to the campus until all hearings and appeals are complete. If the student is convicted of assault or battery on a school teacher, he or she is not allowed to return to the campus at all, unless it is determined that there is no other school where the student can be placed.
It should be noted that “assault on a school teacher” and “battery on a school teacher” are specific charges. It has occurred that a student, after assaulting or battering a school teacher, has been charged with “simple assault” or “simple battery”. An charge and conviction of these crimes will not trigger the automatic removal required by 17:416. It is extremely important that if you are a victim of a threat or attack from a student, the arresting officer needs to arrest them for “assault on a school teacher” (14:38.2) or “battery on a school teacher” (14:34.3). Also, you should request a copy of the arrest report. This will give you proof that the student has been accused of violating a crime that will trigger 17:416. Finally, you should be sure to file a referral against the student, so that there will be a record that the school administration was aware of exactly what happened.