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Safe Schools Act re-introduced in U.S. House, aims to help prevent bullying

Thursday, March 14, 2013

WASHINGTON — U.S. Rep. Linda Sánchez (D-Calif.) on Thursday re-introduced the Safe Schools Improvement Act in the U.S. House, a bill to help ensure a safe learning environment at schools nationwide and provide necessary resources to prevent school bullying and reduce the rising drop-out rate.

The Safe Schools Improvement Act (SSIA) would require schools and school districts across the country that receive federal funds to adopt codes of conduct specifically prohibiting bullying and harassment, including on the basis of actual or perceived sexual orientation and gender identity.

The Act would also require that states report data on bullying and harassment to the Department of Education.

Sánchez has introduced the SSIA in each of the previous three sessions of Congress, and the bill currently has 59 co-sponsors.

“We owe it to our children to protect them and make sure they have a safe and comfortable learning environment at school,” said Sánchez. “We are failing our students if they are afraid to come to school because they face daily threats and intimidation.”

“Bullying can destroy a student’s self-esteem and wreck their academic progress. No child deserves to be bullied or harassed, and it’s time we made this violent and destructive behavior a relic of the past,” she said.

The Safe Schools Improvement Act has garnered support more than 100 organizations, including the National PTA; the American Federation of Teachers; the American Library Association; Big Brothers Big Sisters of America; the Gay, Lesbian, and Straight Education Network; the Human Rights Campaign; the National Council of La Raza; and the Anti-Defamation League.

“The Safe Schools Improvement Act is a bipartisan response to the unsettling fact that schools remain hostile and unsafe for our nation’s youth,” said Dr. Eliza Byard, Gay, Lesbian, and Straight Education Network Executive Director. “No student should ever feel compelled to skip school or not be able to succeed in class as the result of unchecked bullying and harassment.”

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6 more reader comments:

  1. the best way to stop bullying is to educate all children about the fact that being different from others is ok.

    Posted on Thursday, March 14, 2013 at 9:14pm
  2. Posted on Thursday, March 14, 2013 at 10:03pm
  3. But the right-wing “religious” Republicans want an exemption clause that allows “CHRISTians” to continue bullying the LGBTQ community, as it’s their “freedom of religion” right!!??!!?? Sick!!

    Posted on Friday, March 15, 2013 at 4:37am
  4. “They will NO we are Christians by our love,” that’s how my favorite childhood hymn goes. And my salty piano teacher about choked when I played it for her…commenting that at least one of the verses might include lions, the inquisition and a saint’s gruesome death by pillory. W

    Posted on Friday, March 15, 2013 at 4:41am
  5. That’s not freedom of religion that’s bullying and it needs to stop. CHRISTians that do that are hypocrites. I don’t judge people GOD does that, but Christians are supposed to treat others like they want to be treated and then wonder why they get called hypocrites and other things.

    Posted on Friday, March 15, 2013 at 4:43am
  6. Correct, Mrs Rasmussen had survived WWII and who never imagined the numerals below her 3/4 sleeves to be anything but a dance card. And she had me guess but all I thought of was the blue grocery ink so prevalent in super markets of my day. I was about 9 or 10

    Posted on Friday, March 15, 2013 at 4:46am