Act 57 and Act 110
The Pennsylvania Department of Education(PDE) Office for Safe Schools (OSS) coordinates school safety and security programs, collects annual school violence statistics, coordinates antiviolence efforts, and develops policies and strategies to combat school violence. Additionally, OSS provides information on laws, policies, and regulations as they impact students and school safety.
Act 57 of 2020 (Act 57) and
Act 110 of 2020 (Act 110) are two important statutory changes impacting school safety. The following is a brief overview of each law. In the weeks ahead additional resources will be published to the OSS webpage to provide clarity and assistance with the application of each law.
Act 57 of 2020
Act 57 of 2020 is effective July 14, 2021 and requires school entities that employ school police officers (SPO), school resource officers (SRO), and school security guards to retain information about the law enforcement officers and to provide certain information to other prospective law enforcement employers.
More specifically, school entities that employ SPOs, SROs, or school security guards must:
- Maintain certain employment records for law enforcement officers to include separation records;
- Conduct a thorough background investigation on applicants for law enforcement officers;
- Disclose employment information for someone who is the subject of a background investigation from a perspective employing law enforcement agency;
- Submit applicable separation records to MPOETC within 15 days of the law enforcement officer’s separation from employment; and
- Provide MPOETC its rationale for hiring a law enforcement officer whose separation records show disciplinary action for certain conduct.
The Municipal Police Officers’ Education and Training Commission (MPOETC) is charged with implementing Act 57 and is developing a database for record maintenance of currently employed officers and separation information.
PDE, through a partnership with Pennsylvania State Police and MPOETC, will provide additional information in the weeks to come.
In the meantime, MPOETC is requesting each school entity visit the MPOETC website for more information about Act 57 and complete a brief survey:
Please direct any questions to MPOETC at
Act 110 of 2020
Act 110 of 2020 amended the Public School Code of 1949 by adding Section 1318.1 Students Convicted or Adjudicated Delinquent of Sexual Assault. Effective January 3, 2021, K-12 public schools are required to remove, transfer, or reassign students who are adjudicated delinquent or convicted of sexual assault when the offending student and the victim are enrolled in the same school.
Sexual assault includes any of the offenses specified under the following provisions of 18 Pa.C.S. (relating to crimes and offenses) relating to rape, statutory sexual assault, involuntary deviate sexual intercourse, sexual assault, aggravated indecent assault, and indecent assault.
Section 1318.1 applies to all public school entities, which includes school districts, independent schools, area career and technical schools, intermediate units, charter schools, regional charter schools, and cyber charter schools.
Requirements for school entities under Act 110
- All public school entities must update their written policies to ensure compliance with the requirements as outlined in the law.
- If a student enrolled in a public school entity is convicted or adjudicated delinquent of committing a sexual assault against another student enrolled in the same public school entity, the public school entity must take one of the following actions:
- Expel the convicted/adjudicated student;
- Transfer the convicted/adjudicated student to an alternative education program; or
- Reassign the convicted/adjudicated student to another school or program within the public school entity.
Ensure that the convicted/adjudicated student is not educated within the same school building, transported on the same school vehicle, or allowed to participate in the same school-sponsored activities at the same time as the victim.
A student who is expelled, transferred, or reassigned because of his/her conviction/adjudication for sexual assault may return to their originally assigned school only if the victim ceases to be enrolled in the public school entity or the conviction or delinquency is reversed and no appeal is pending.
A student convicted of a sexual assault upon another student enrolled in the same public school entity must notify the public school entity of the conviction no later than 72 hours after the conviction.
Upon registration, provide a sworn statement or affirmation stating whether they were previously or is presently expelled under the provisions of section 1318.1.
In the case of students with disabilities, school entities must take all steps necessary to comply with the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (Public Law 91-230, 20 U.S.C. § 1400 et seq.).
Additional guidance and resources will be posted on the
PDE Office of Safe Schools webpage in the coming weeks. However, school entities are advised to consult their solicitors on how Act 110 impacts their current policies and procedures.
Questions may be direct to the Office of Safe Schools at
firstname.lastname@example.org or 717-783-6612.