Attorney General Lori Swanson is taking initiative to combat bulling in schools . Swanson’s new proposal will prohibit students from bullying and retaliating against victims or those who report bullying.
It will require districts to comply as early as January 1st, 2012. Districts will also be required to set procedures for immediate reporting of bullying including investigation and disciplinary action, and in applicable cases, notifying police. Bullying prevention programs will be needed to be provided to all K-12 students. Districts will be responsible for filing annual reports with the attorney general on bullying incidents at their schools.
Swanson stated that state figures show 13 percent of 6th, 9th and 12-graders report being bullied once or more a week, yet Minnesota’s current anti-bullying law is one of the shortest in the nation. Swanson’s proposal specifically targets alleged bullying on school grounds and during school-sanctioned events. With the rise of social media bullying, it may seem tougher to police, but Swanson said those incidents will eventually make their way into school.
Swanson is confident that the legislation, which require no new state money, will pass.
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