Massachusetts legislators hear appeals for anti-bullying law

Cape Cod Times
BOSTON — A Cape Cod mother made a tearful plea to state legislators yesterday to pass one of a dozen bills addressing school bullying, saying the state must step in to assure schools do their job in protecting students from mental and physical anguish.

“I felt my son needed to be protected. The bullying completely disrupted his ability to feel safe in a learning environment,” said Theresa Jackson, a Forestdale resident and mother of a 13-year-old boy with autism spectrum disorder.
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Wisconsin Senate to curb bullying, texting while driving

MADISON (WKOW) — Wisconsin lawmakers are set to vote on a number of measures this week, including a proposal aimed at stopping bullying in state schools.

The bill, up for vote on Tuesday, would require schools to adopt policies that ban bullying and require authorities report all bullying incidents to the state.
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Utah education board cracks down on bullies

The Associated Press
The Utah State Board of Education is cracking down on bullies.
The panel approved a rule Friday that defines bullying and hazing so that students will know exactly what is unacceptable.

Board members said the action comes in response to an increase in bullying and hazing incidents across the state during the past year.
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South Dakota one of six states without bullying laws

Excerpt from Rapid City Journal
and The Associated Press

South Dakota is one of six states that does not have anti-bullying laws, and Rapid City educators this year say they will continue to try combat bullying, suicide and harassment issues with proactive programs.

Only five other states — Montana, Hawaii, Wisconsin, Massachusetts and North Dakota — and the District of Columbia lack specific laws targeting school bullying, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures
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Alabama bullying law goes into effect Oct. 1, 2009

By Lisa Singleton-Rickman
Excerpt from Lawrence Times-Daily
Lawrence, Alabama — Alabama is among the most recent of 44 states to pass an anti-bullying law, which will go into effect Oct. 1.

Until now, there haven’t been any legal repercussions from bullying and it’s an issue the state has long needed to address, said longtime educator Lisa Moses, of Florence, who said bullying is one area addressed in another new piece of legislation known as Taylor’s Law. Under that law, a student’s behavior at school, including bullying, can delay the student from acquiring a driver’s license.
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AP Enterprise: Bullying laws give scant protection

Excerpt from Associated Press
ATLANTA (AP) — Recent student suicides have parents and advocates complaining that anti-bullying laws enacted in nearly every state are not being enforced and do not go far enough to identify and rid schools of chronic tormentors.

Forty-four states expressly ban bullying, a legislative legacy of a rash of school shootings in the late ’90s, yet few if any of those measures have identified children who excessively pick on their peers, an Associated Press review has found. And few offer any method for ensuring the policies are enforced, according to data compiled by the National Conference of State Legislatures.
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Utah may soon get bullying policy, tough on athletes

By Amy K. Stewart
Deseret News
Bullies beware: The state may soon have a new policy targeting bullying and hazing — and it will put athletes under special scrutiny.

The State Board of Education unanimously approved a second reading of its proposed policy Friday. The final vote will come next month.

The driving force for the action is the ever-increasing incidents of bullying and hazing across Utah, especially with athletes, State Board officials say. According to the board agenda “at least one high school community has experienced very serious bullying and hazing among students in its football program this past summer despite a state law that was passed.”
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