§ 16-23-2. Loan of textbooks.
(a) The school committee of every community as it is defined in § 16-7-16 shall furnish upon request, at the expense of the community, textbooks to all students in grades K-12 in the fields of mathematics, science, modern foreign languages, English/language arts and history/social studies, appearing on the list of textbooks published by the commissioner of elementary and secondary education as provided in § 16-23-3, to all pupils of elementary and secondary school grades resident in the community, the textbooks to be loaned to the pupils free of charge, subject to any rules and regulations as to care and custody that the school committee may prescribe. For loan purposes, non-public schools may not change a textbook assignment in a field more often than once in a three (3) year period as required of public schools in accordance with the provisions of § 16-23-1. Nothing in this section shall be construed as forbidding non-public schools from requiring the use of any textbook, consistent with the provisions of this chapter, that does not adhere to said limitation, provided that the textbook is furnished to the student through a means other than the school committee of the student's city or town of residence.
(b) Every school committee shall also furnish at the expense of the community all other textbooks and school supplies used in the public schools of the community, the other textbooks and supplies to be loaned to the pupils of the public schools free of charge, subject to any rules and regulations as to care and custody that the school committee may prescribe. School books removed from school use may be distributed to pupils, and any textbook may become the property of a pupil who has completed the use of it in school, subject to rules and regulations prescribed by the school committee.
(c) Nothing in this section shall be construed to forbid requiring or accepting from a pupil a deposit of a reasonable amount of money as a guaranty for the return of school property other than the books and supplies required in this section to be loaned free of charge, provided that the school committee shall make suitable rules and regulations for the safekeeping and return of deposits; and, provided, further, that in establishing schedules for deposits, the school committee should include provision for waiver of deposit due to financial hardship.
(G.L. 1896, ch. 60, § 22; G.L. 1909, ch. 67, § 12; P.L. 1913, ch. 944, § 1; G.L. 1923, ch. 70, § 25; G.L. 1938, ch. 178, § 25; G.L. 1956, § 16-23-2; P.L. 1963, ch. 12, § 2; P.L. 1978, ch. 159, § 1; P.L. 2000, ch. 142, § 1; P.L. 2000, ch. 212, § 1; P.L. 2000, ch. 368, § 1; P.L. 2000, ch. 456, § 1; P.L. 2003, ch. 376, art. 9, § 11; P.L. 2008, ch. 232, § 1; P.L. 2008, ch. 323, § 1.)