Education Department to Study School Bullying Policies

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The Department of Education’s Policy and Program Studies Service (PPSS) is conducting case studies in 24 school sites studying the effectiveness and implementation of bullying policy.

“There is limited data or knowledge about implementation of bullying policy at school district and school levels,” says the department notice explaining the study.    

The goal is to identify how these policies are influenced by state and district legislation, and identify and analyze positive strategies that are being implemented by some schools.

In the last 20 years there has been an increase in anti-bullying legislation at the state level. Forty-six states have since enacted either new laws pertaining to bullying or amended their existing laws, according to one document in the study entitled “Analysis of Bullying State Laws and Policies.” Some of these laws specifically address the emergence of cyber-bullying as a new avenue to bullying.

The department issued a guidance letter to schools and colleges last October, reminding them that failure to address bullying could result in financial penalties from the federal government.

“We’re going to really challenge places that have their heads in the sand and aren’t displaying the courage to move ahead in the right direction,” said Education Secretary Arne Duncan after the guidance was issued.

The Department of Education is soliciting input from the general public on how to structure this project. in this endeavor. Click here for details on the project and how to submit comments