Hazing Law (Education Code)
Education Code § 51.936 requirement to publish a summary of Education Code Ch. 37, subchapter F. Hazing in the University Catalog
The following is a summary of Chapter 37, subchapter F. (§§ 37.151-157) of the Texas Education Code, which prohibits hazing in Texas public or private high schools. Texas Education Code §51.936 applies Ch. 37’s prohibition on hazing to institutions of higher education. This summary of Chapter 37 is provided as required by § 51.936(d).
Hazing is a criminal violation under Texas law. A person may be found guilty of criminal conduct for hazing, encouraging hazing, permitting hazing, or having knowledge of the planning of hazing incidents and failing to report in writing their knowledge to the Executive Director of Student Community Standards or designee.
Both failing to report hazing and hazing that does not result in serious bodily injury are Class B misdemeanors. Hazing that results in serious bodily injury is a Class A misdemeanor. Hazing resulting in a death is a state jail felony. An organization found guilty of hazing may be fined $5,000 to $10,000 or, for incidents causing personal injury or property damage, a minimum of $5,000 up to an amount double the loss or expenses incurred because of the hazing incident. It is not a defense to prosecution that the person hazed consented to the hazing activity.
Any person reporting a specific hazing incident to the Executive Director of Student Community Standards or other appropriate institutional official is immune from civil and criminal liability unless they are reporting their own act of hazing or the report is made in bad faith or malicious.
State law does not limit or affect an educational institution’s right to enforce its own penalties against hazing.
The Education Code defines hazing as “any intentional, knowing, or reckless act occurring on or off the campus of an educational institution, by one person or acting with others, directed against a student for the purpose of pledging, being initiated into, affiliating with, holding office in, or maintaining membership in an organization.” The statute contains a list of conduct which constitutes hazing.
In order to report suspected incidents of hazing, contact Student Community Standards or the police department at your respective campus.
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