Date of Conferral





Criminal Justice


Gloria Billingsley


AbstractSince the advent of the internet and the proliferation of social media in recent decades, a new form of bullying, cyberbullying, has emerged with serious repercussions for the physical and mental health of many persons, especially youth. In response, legislation was passed in all 50 states, including Texas, where the mandate to address all bullying, including cyberbullying, behaviors in schools was formalized by David’s Law in 2017. This law requires that policy and procedures be put in place in Texas public school districts. The problem is that it has not been determined whether David’s Law has been implemented in all schools. The purpose of this study was to determine the degree of compliance with David’s Law in Texas public school districts. The theoretical framework of this study was the theory of authoritative school climate, the direct descendant of Baumrind’s theory of authoritative parenting. The key research questions sought to determine, for each school district, how many of the requirements of David’s Law were met, whether there was a relationship between compliance and factors such as school size, as well as lack of compliance and variables such as limited funding. The research design was nonexperimental and quantitative, using data obtained from a homogenous convenience sampling survey of Texas public school district teachers. The data were transformed into frequencies and simple linear regressions. The key finding was that David’s Law was implemented in a significant number of Texas public school districts and had reduced bullying behaviors, including cyberbullying. Positive social change that may result is the enhanced safety of Texas students, which could result in improved well-being and academic performance.