Indiana

Education, From The Capitol To The Classroom

Is Indiana Doing Enough To Stop Bullying?

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A recent anti bullying law proposed by Fort Wayne State Senator Thomas Wyss was defeated in committee during the last legislative session.

So you’re an Indiana school with a bullying problem.  What do you do about it?

Schools in places like Oregon, Connecticut, and Illinois can turn to the state for direction. These places have model bullying policies which districts can use and manipulate to meet their needs. They also have mandatory oversight and review of bullying trends and specific legal remedies laid out in cases where bullying occurs.

Indiana has none of these.

That is one of the main findings of a report released earlier today by the US Department of Education.

The study is based on a series of criteria for evaluating the thoroughness and effectiveness of bullying legislation from all 50 states.  Of sixteen measures set by the agency, Indiana met half. These ratings include things like monitoring of trouble children, legal remedies available to victims of bullying, and whether a state has an adequate system for reviewing local bullying policies.

On all of these counts, Indiana fails.

In fairness, the Indiana Department of Education has taken it upon itself to offer some bullying training to schools (including special sessions devoted to cyberbullying).  It also publishes a list of expectations that parents should have of schools if they report incidents of bullying.  But these recommendations do not have the force of law.

Comments

  • Heather Strickland

    The adults seem to be bullies too! I have never experienced anything like this anywhere else as I have here. It’s pathetic and a bit creepy. From what I have seen online in blogs and other social media I am not the only “outsider” to move into this state and experience this. So I guess that bullying is an accepted part of the culture here in the Hoosier State?

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