Senator Todd D. Weiler proposes the following substitute bill:




Chief Sponsor: Ken Ivory

Senate Sponsor: Todd D. Weiler

6     Cosponsors:
7     Cheryl K. Acton
8     Carl R. Albrecht
9     Stewart E. Barlow
10     Kera Birkeland
11     Bridger Bolinder
12     Walt Brooks
13     Jefferson S. Burton
14     Kay J. Christofferson
15     Tyler Clancy
16     Joseph Elison
17     Stephanie Gricius
Katy Hall
Colin W. Jack
Tim Jimenez
Dan N. Johnson
Michael L. Kohler
Trevor Lee
Karianne Lisonbee
Steven J. Lund
Phil Lyman
A. Cory Maloy
Jefferson Moss
Michael J. Petersen
Thomas W. Peterson
Candice B. Pierucci
Judy Weeks Rohner
Rex P. Shipp
Keven J. Stratton
Mark A. Strong
Jordan D. Teuscher
R. Neil Walter
Raymond P. Ward
Christine F. Watkins
Stephen L. Whyte
Ryan D. Wilcox

20     General Description:
21          This bill amends provisions regarding the evaluation of instructional material to
22     identify and remove pornographic or indecent material.
23     Highlighted Provisions:

24          This bill:
25          ▸     defines terms;
26          ▸     requires the prioritization of protecting children from illicit pornography over other
27     considerations in evaluating instructional material;
28          ▸     specifies individuals who may trigger a formal sensitive material review;
29          ▸     establishes certain required processes for the evaluation and review of sensitive
30     material allegations, including distinct requirements for objective sensitive material
31     and subjective sensitive material;
32          ▸     requires certain actions statewide if a certain threshold of local education agencies
33     determine that the instructional material constitutes objective sensitive material,
34     subject to a vote of the state board to overturn the statewide action in certain
35     circumstances;
36          ▸     provides indemnification for claims arising from sensitive materials requirements;
37          ▸     requires the Office of the Legislative Auditor General to audit school district
38     compliance with sensitive materials requirements; and
39          ▸     makes technical and conforming changes.
40     Money Appropriated in this Bill:
41          None
42     Other Special Clauses:
43          This bill provides a special effective date.
44     Utah Code Sections Affected:
45     AMENDS:
46          53G-10-103, as enacted by Laws of Utah 2022, Chapter 377

48     Be it enacted by the Legislature of the state of Utah:
49          Section 1. Section 53G-10-103 is amended to read:
50          53G-10-103. Sensitive instructional materials.
51          (1) As used in this section:
52          (a) (i) "Instructional material" means a material, regardless of format, used:
53          (A) as or in place of textbooks to deliver curriculum within the state curriculum
54     framework for courses of study by students; or

55          (B) to support a student's learning in [the] any school setting.
56          (ii) "Instructional material" includes reading materials, handouts, videos, digital
57     materials, websites, online applications, and live presentations.
58          (iii) "Instructional material" does not mean exclusively library materials.
59          (b) "LEA governing board" means:
60          (i) for a school district, the local school board;
61          (ii) for a charter school, the charter school governing board; or
62          (iii) for the Utah Schools for the Deaf and the Blind, the state board.
63          (c) "Material" means the same as that term is defined in Section 76-10-1201.
64          (d) "Minor" means any person less than 18 years old.
65          (e) "Objective sensitive material" means an instructional material that constitutes
66     pornographic or indecent material, as that term is defined in Section 76-10-1235, under the
67     non-discretionary standards described in Subsection 76-10-1227(1)(a)(i), (ii), or (iii).
68          [(e)] (f) "Public school" means:
69          (i) a district school;
70          (ii) a charter school; or
71          (iii) the Utah Schools for the Deaf and the Blind.
72          [(f)] (g) (i) "School setting" means, for a public school:
73          (A) in a classroom;
74          (B) in a school library; or
75          (C) on school property.
76          (ii) "School setting" includes the following activities that an organization or individual
77     or organization outside of a public school conducts, if a public school or an LEA sponsors or
78     requires the activity:
79          (A) an assembly;
80          (B) a guest lecture;
81          (C) a live presentation; or
82          (D) an event.
83          [(g)] (h) (i) "Sensitive material" means an instructional material that [is pornographic
84     or indecent material as that term is defined in Section 76-10-1235] constitutes objective
85     sensitive material or subjective sensitive material.

86          (ii) "Sensitive material" does not include an instructional material:
87          (A) that an LEA selects under Section 53G-10-402;
88          (B) for a concurrent enrollment course that contains sensitive material and for which a
89     parent receives notice from the course provider of the material before enrollment of the parent's
90     child and gives the parent's consent by enrolling the parent's child;
91          [(B)] (C) for medical courses;
92          [(C)] (D) for family and consumer science courses; or
93          [(D)] (E) for another course the state board exempts in state board rule.
94          (iii) "Subjective sensitive material" means an instructional material that constitutes
95     pornographic or indecent material, as that term is defined in Section 76-10-1235, under the
96     following factor-balancing standards:
97          (A) material that is harmful to minors under Section 76-10-1201;
98          (B) material that is pornographic under Section 76-10-1203; or
99          (C) material that includes certain fondling or other erotic touching under Subsection
100     76-10-1227(1)(a)(iv).
101          (2) (a) Sensitive materials are prohibited in the school setting.
102          (b) A public school or an LEA may not:
103          (i) adopt, use, distribute, provide a student access to, or maintain in the school setting,
104     sensitive materials; or
105          (ii) permit a speaker or presenter in the school setting to display or distribute sensitive
106     materials.
107          (c) In evaluating, selecting, or otherwise considering action related to a given
108     instructional material under this section, each public school and each LEA shall prioritize
109     protecting children from the harmful effects of illicit pornography over other considerations in
110     evaluating instructional material.
111          (d) If an instructional material constitutes objective sensitive material:
112          (i) a public school or an LEA is not required to engage in a review under a subjective
113     sensitive material standard; and
114          (ii) the outcome of a subjective sensitive material evaluation has no bearing on the
115     non-discretionary objective sensitive material conclusion.
116          (3) (a) Except as provided in Subsection (3)(b), the following individuals may initiate a

117     sensitive material review under this section:
118          (i) an employee of the relevant LEA;
119          (ii) a student who is enrolled in the relevant LEA;
120          (iii) a parent of a child who is enrolled in the relevant LEA; or
121          (iv) a member of the relevant LEA governing board.
122          (b) (i) As used in this Subsection (3)(b), "unsuccessful challenge" means an allegation
123     that a given instructional material constitutes sensitive material that the LEA concludes to be
124     erroneous, either on direct review or on appeal to the LEA governing board, resulting in the
125     retention of the given instructional material.
126          (ii) Notwithstanding Subsection (3)(a), after an individual makes three unsuccessful
127     challenges during a given academic year, the individual may not trigger a sensitive material
128     review under this section during the remainder of the given academic year.
129          [(3) An LEA shall include]
130          (4) Upon receipt of an allegation from an individual described in Subsection (3)(a), an
131     LEA shall:
132          (a) (i) make an initial determination as to whether the allegation presents a plausible
133     claim that the challenged instructional material constitutes sensitive material, including
134     whether the allegation includes excerpts and other evidence to support the allegation; and
135          (ii) if the LEA determines that the allegation presents a plausible claim that the
136     challenged instructional material constitutes sensitive material under Subsection (4)(a)(i),
137     immediately remove the challenged material from any school setting that provides student
138     access to the challenged material until the LEA completes the LEA's full review of the
139     challenged material under this section;
140          (b) (i) engage in a review of the allegations and the challenged instructional material
141     using the objective sensitive material standards; and
142          (ii) if the LEA makes a determination that the challenged instructional material
143     constitutes objective sensitive material, ensure that the material remains inaccessible to
144     students in any school setting;
145          (c) only if the LEA makes a determination that the challenged instructional material
146     does not constitute objective sensitive material:
147          (i) review the allegations and the challenged instructional material under the subjective

148     material standards, ensuring that the review includes parents who are reflective of the members
149     of the school's community when determining if an instructional material is subjective sensitive
150     material[.];
151          (ii) allow student access to the challenged instructional material during the LEA's
152     subjective sensitive material review if the student's parent gives consent regarding the specific
153     challenged instructional material; and
154          (iii) if the LEA makes a determination that the challenged instructional material
155     constitutes subjective sensitive material, ensure that the material is inaccessible to students in
156     any school setting, including the termination of the parent consent option described in
157     Subsection (4)(c)(ii); and
158          (d) communicate to the state board the allegation and the LEA's final determination
159     regarding the allegation and the challenged instructional material.
160          (5) (a) An individual described in Subsection (3)(a) may appeal an LEA's decision
161     regarding a sensitive material review, regardless of whether the LEA removed or retained the
162     challenged instructional material, to the LEA governing board.
163          (b) An LEA governing board shall vote in a public board meeting to decide the
164     outcome of a sensitive material review appeal, clearly identifying:
165          (i) the board's rationale for the decision; and
166          (ii) the board's determination on each component of the statutory and any additional
167     policy standards the board uses to reach the board's conclusions.
168          (6) An LEA governing board may not enact rules or policies that prevent the LEA
169     governing board from:
170          (a) revisiting a previous decision;
171          (b) reviewing a recommendation of LEA personnel or a parent-related committee
172     regarding a challenged instructional material; or
173          (c) reconsidering a challenged instructional material if the LEA governing board
174     receives additional information regarding the material.
175          (7) (a) Except as provided in Subsection (7)(d), if the threshold described in Subsection
176     (7)(b) is met, each LEA statewide shall remove the relevant instructional material from student
177     access.
178          (b) The requirement described in Subsection (7)(a) to remove a given material from

179     student access applies if the following number of LEAs makes a determination that a given
180     instructional material constitutes objective sensitive material:
181          (i) at least three school districts; or
182          (ii) at least two school districts and five charter schools.
183          (c) The state board shall:
184          (i) aggregate allegations and LEA determinations described in Subsection (4)(d); and
185          (ii) no later than 10 school days after the day on which the condition described in
186     Subsection (7)(b) occurs, communicate to all LEAs the application of the requirement
187     described in Subsection (7)(a) to remove the material from student access.
188          (d) (i) When the threshold described in Subsection (7)(b) is met for a given
189     instructional material, in addition to making the communication described in Subsection (7)(c),
190     the state board may:
191          (A) place the material on the agenda of a public board meeting within 60 days after the
192     day on which the state board makes the communication to LEAs under Subsection (7)(c); and
193          (B) at the specified state board meeting, vote to overturn the application of the
194     requirement described in Subsection (7)(a) to remove a given material from student access
195     statewide.
196          (ii) If the state board votes to overturn the application of the statewide removal
197     requirement described in Subsection (7)(a) under Subsection (7)(d)(i):
198          (A) the statewide removal requirement described in Subsection (7)(a) no longer
199     applies;
200          (B) an LEA may choose to return the given material to student access; and
201          (C) nothing affects the findings of an LEA governing board regarding removal of the
202     given material within the board's LEA.
203          (e) This Subsection (7) applies to sensitive materials that LEAs remove from student
204     access, regardless of whether:
205          (i) the sensitive material determinations occur in the same academic year; or
206          (ii) a sensitive material determination occurred before July 1, 2024.
207          [(4)] (8) The state board shall:
208          (a) in consultation with the Office of the Attorney General, provide guidance and
209     training to support public schools in identifying instructional materials that meet the definition

210     of sensitive materials under this section; [and]
211          (b) establish a process through which an individual described in Subsection (3)(a) may
212     report to the state board an allegation that an LEA is out of compliance with this section; and
213          [(b)] (c) annually report to the Education Interim Committee [and the Government
214     Operations Interim Committee], at or before the November [2022] interim meeting, on
215     implementation and compliance with this section, including:
216          (i) any policy the state board or an LEA adopts to implement or comply with this
217     section;
218          (ii) any rule the state board makes to implement or comply with this section; and
219          (iii) any complaints an LEA or the state board receives regarding a violation of this
220     section, including:
221          (A) action taken in response to a complaint described in this Subsection [(4)(b)(iii)]
222     (8)(c)(iii); [and]
223          (B) if an LEA retains an instructional material for which the LEA or the state board
224     receives a complaint, the LEA's rationale for retaining the instructional material[.]; and
225          (C) compliance failures that the state board identifies through the reporting process
226     described in Subsection (8)(b) and other investigations or research.
227          (9) The state shall defend, indemnify, and hold harmless a person acting under color of
228     state law to enforce this section for any claims or damages, including court costs and attorney
229     fees, that:
230          (a) a person brings or incurs as a result of this section; and
231          (b) is not covered by the person's insurance policies or any coverage agreement that the
232     State Risk Management Fund issues.
233          (10) Subject to prioritization of the Audit Subcommittee created in Section 36-12-8,
234     the Office of the Legislative Auditor General shall:
235          (a) conduct an audit of each school district's compliance with this section, ensuring the
236     completion of all school district audits before November 2028; and
237          (b) annually report to the Education Interim Committee regarding completed sensitive
238     material audits under this Subsection (10).
239          Section 2. Effective date.
240          This bill takes effect on July 1, 2024.