Chapter 428
2016 -- S 2172 SUBSTITUTE A
Enacted 07/12/2016

A N   A C T

Introduced By: Senators Satchell, Metts, Pichardo, Sheehan, and Archambault
Date Introduced: January 27, 2016

It is enacted by the General Assembly as follows:
     SECTION 1. Title 16 of the General Laws entitled "EDUCATION" is hereby amended
by adding thereto the following chapter:
     16-21.6-1. Internet filtering. -- (a) "Internet-filtering measures" means the use of a
specific technology or program to block or filter access to websites on the internet.
     (b) Each school district shall adopt the model, written policy developed by the
department of education, pursuant to subsection (e), addressing the use of internet filtering
measures for computer access in its schools. Any such policy shall:
     (1) Include the specific categories of websites that are blocked by the internet filtering
measures in use; the basis for including those categories; and the individuals who are responsible
for making those decisions;
     (2) Establish a procedure for teachers to request that a blocked website be unblocked in a
timely manner; and
     (3) Specify the criteria used for overruling a request to allow access to a website that is
blocked by the internet-filtering measures, and require that the teacher making such a request be
provided particular reasons any time a request is denied.
     (c) Each school district shall maintain a public record of any requests to allow access to a
website that is blocked by the internet-filtering measures and the response provided, and submit
an annual report to the school committee on the number of requests granted and denied to
unblock a website.
     (d) Each school district shall annually review the requests made in the preceding year,
pursuant to subsection (b)(2), for unblocking websites in order to determine whether the
categories and standards contained in the policy adopted pursuant to subsection (b)(1) shall be
     (e) The Rhode Island department of education shall develop a written, model internet-
filtering policy for use by school districts, state schools, charter schools, and mayoral academies.
The model plan shall include, but not be limited to, the provisions contained in subsections (b)(1),
(b)(2), and (b)(3), and to the extent consistent with federal law, promote academic freedom in the
classroom, and shall be communicated to all school districts in the state for their use and posted
on the department website.
     SECTION 2. This act shall take effect upon passage.
LC003225/SUB A