Safe & Supportive Minnesota Schools Bill Introduced
HOUSE HEARING TO BE HELD THIS THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 28
St. Paul, February 25, 2013 – A comprehensive anti-bullying bill, called the Safe and Supportive Minnesota Schools Act (House File 826), was introduced in the State Legislature last week. The House Education Committee will hold a hearing this Thursday at 10:00 am in the Basement Hearing Room of the State Office Building.
Currently, Minnesota has one of the weakest anti-bullying laws in the country – just 37 words. If passed, the Safe & Supportive Schools Act would provide our state with one of the most effective. The bill would repeal the current law and replace it with new, comprehensive legislation, which would require all Minnesota school districts to adopt policies to protect all students and provide adequate support for teachers and other adults to effectively implement policies to keep students safe.
“Providing strong and comprehensive anti-bullying legislation is a key to improving our schools and making sure that our children have the support that they need to succeed academically and socially,” said House bill author Rep. Jim Davnie (DFL-Minneapolis). “The Safe and Supportive Schools framework will let kids spend more time learning and less time worrying about bullying that could occur before or after school. When the bell rings, kids should be rest-assured that they can leave the classroom safely and continue on with their day.”
Senate bill author Sen. Scott Dibble (DFL-Minneapolis) states: “This proposal reflects the findings of the Governor's task force, which heard from education professionals, experts, parents, members of the public, and most importantly, young people themselves. They heard loud and clear that we can create a future where every child who goes to school knows that they are valued, that they are safe, and that they have an equal opportunity in life."
The Safe Schools for All Coalition is a group of over 80 education, disability, youth, religious, LGBT and social service organizations, as well as individuals. The Coalition supports the passage of comprehensive legislation that requires all Minnesota school districts to adopt policies to protect all students and provide adequate support for teachers to effectively implement policies to keep students safe.