As the much anticipated movie “Bully” gets ready to release nationwide I thought it would be prudent to share this study released by the U.S. Department of Education in 2011. This study is an in-depth analysis of state bullying laws and school district policies, and the study is worth reading.
Key findings from the study (directly quoted):
• Forty-six states have bullying laws and 45 of those laws direct school districts to
adopt bullying policies. However, three of the 46 states prohibit bullying
without defining the behavior that is prohibited.
• Thirty-six states include provisions in their education codes prohibiting
cyberbullying or bullying using electronic media. Thirteen states specify that
schools have jurisdiction over off-campus behavior if it creates a hostile school
• Forty-one states have created model bullying policies, 12 of which were not
mandated to do so under law. Three other states, including Hawaii, Montana,
and Michigan, also developed model policies in the absence of state bullying
• Among the 20 school district bullying policies reviewed in this study, districts
located in states with more expansive legislation produced the most expansive
school district policies. However, several school districts in states with less
expansive laws also substantially expanded the scope and content of their
policies beyond the minimum legal expectations.
District policies and state laws provide us with the guidance needed to address bullying within our schools. How well is your school doing in addressing bullying proactively? How well is your district doing in implementing meaningful policy? How well is your state doing in crafting meaningful legislation to address bullying?
I think it is critical for building administrators to address bullying with proactive due diligence and create safe cultures in which all student can learn and flourish.
[Source: Buckfire and Buckfire.com]