While Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon is not indicating whether he'll sign a revised social networking bill this week, the GOP-sponsored bill is now on his desk.
Approval of the bill could mean public school teachers and administrators would be banned from communicating with students through Facebook—a ubiquitous means of communication.
As previously reported by Patch, revisions to the Amy Hestir Student Protection Act were making its way through the General Assembly last week. Friday, the revised bill finally made its way out of the state House and Senate.
Last month, Patch reported on the controversy and confusion surrounding Senate Bill 54, sponsored by Missouri State Sen. Jane Cunningham (R-Chesterfield.) She is a former Ladue school board member.
She has indicated the Facebook ban is designed to protect students from school-related adults.
A court injunction halted enactment of the previous measure into law, when teachers statewide called for the courts to step in, finding the measure was too vague and troubling.
A Parkway teacher who is also a parent said the new law would make it illegal for her to communicate online with her own children.
The Missouri State Teachers Association (MSTA) sued the state over the bans on social networking aspects of Cunningham's bill. MSTA was awarded an injunction on Aug. 26, just two days before the new law was to take effect.
At that time, Nixon called for a repeal to parts of the measure and Cunningham worked to revise and clarify the bill.
The revisions to the social media aspects of SB 54 took the form of Senate Bill 1.
As of the start of this week, there is no clear indication what Nixon will do with the controversial piece of legislation.
"The bill will be closely reviewed after it reaches the Governor's desk and before he acts on it," Nixon's Press Secretary Scott Holste told Patch.
If signed into law, SB 1 would replace the portions of SB 54 that teachers claimed were confusing.
Cunningham is hopeful the new version of the bill will be signed into law.
“All education and teacher groups helped craft the language,” Cunningham told Patch.
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