DENVER — Most of Colorado’s school districts have yet to update their bullying policies to come into compliance with a 2011 state law protecting LGBT youth, a survey by the state’s largest LGBT advocacy organization shows.
Fifty-five of 147 school districts surveyed — or 37 percent — are compliant.
“Comprehensive, enumerated bullying prevention policies make schools safer for all young people,” said Brad Clark, One Colorado’s executive director. “The legislature has done its job, passing a law that protects gay and transgender young people. But more than 60 percent of school districts have not done their part to ensure that policies are implemented at the local level.”
The scan of school district policies was completed by the organizations education fund.
Out Front has not been able to independently verify the results of the survey.
The Colorado General Assembly in 2011 passed and Gov. John Hickenlooper signed into law HB-1254, a bullying prevention policy for the state. That law defines bullying to protect students most targeted, including gay and transgender young people. The law also requires school districts to implement anti-bullying policies.
“Passing legislation in 2011 was only the beginning. We must ensure that school districts across Colorado make sincere and thoughtful efforts to implement anti-bullying policies protecting all students,” said one of the bill’s sponsors, Sen. Pat Steadman in a press release.
According to an executive memo released to Out Front, One Colorado began it’s survey of school districts in May 2011. The organization researched school districts’ websites, sent letters and made phone calls. About 50 school districts were unresponsive.
Other results of the survey found 62 percent of districts include sexual orientation in their nondiscrimination
policy and 61 percent include sexual orientation in their harassment policy.
You can review the results of the survey here.