INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) - Indiana's new laws passed during the 2013 legislative session go into effect July 1.
Many of these laws affect schools.
One is an expansion of Indiana's school voucher program that's been on the books for two years.
Beginning in the 2013-14 school year, more students can get vouchers that will cover private school tuition costs. Children can also now receive the vouchers without first attending public school.
Additionally, the law raises the income threshold for families to qualify for vouchers, so some vouchers will now go to middle class students.
The expanded program is also open to all students who live in a public school district that received a state performance grade of F.
Another law, one relating to school safety, comes in the wake of the Sandy Hook Elementary School shootings.
The bill initially proposed having an armed employee in every Indiana school, but that provision was dropped before the bill was signed.
This law sets aside $10 million in state money. Public schools can apply to for a portion of that money and use it to hire school resource officers or buy safety equipment. School resource officers would receive training similar to police officers, and they can carry guns.
A third law taking effect helps school districts fight bullying. This law requires the Indiana Department of Education to develop procedures for investigating and reporting bullying.
Each school district must document the number and nature of bullying incidents. Districts also must have documented procedures for how to help kids who are bullied and provide education for the bully.
Finally, educators and students must be trained about their school's bullying prevention program.
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