Governor signs parental notification bill prompted by Contact7 investigations

Denver7: Colorado schools will now be required to notify parents and families when teachers and other school employees are charged with serious crimes.

Governor John Hickenlooper signed House Bill 18-1269 into law Tuesday morning. The new law requires schools notify parents either by mail or electronically of the arrests of employees whose jobs put them in contact with children who are charged with certain serious crimes including sexual assault.

“Information is power. And parents need to have information so they can be powerful in the protection of their children, and that’s what this bill does. It makes it a statewide standard that districts must notify in the cases of serious threats to children,” said bill sponsor Rep. Paul Lundeen (R-Monument.)

Rep. Lundeen and his co-sponsors proposed the legislation after a series of Contact7 investigations entitled “Parents in the Dark” revealed parents in several school districts were not initially notified about the arrests of teachers and school employees accused of sexually abusing students.

Many districts told Contact7 they had no written policies at all for parental notification of arrests, with most districts saying they made such decisions on a case-by-case basis.

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