Bill Watch: School Bullying
At least eight anti-bullying bills have emerged in the Hawaii Legislature this year in response to last year's national coverage of the tragic effects school harassment can have.
After a couple of high-profile suicides were linked with school bullying, parents and community members in Hawaii got vocal. At one Board of Education meeting in October, more than half a dozen people testified on behalf of students who they feel are not being protected by the Department of Education's existing anti-bullying policy. A Civil Beat report in November revealed the department's policy, Chapter 19, lacks enforcement.
Lawmakers heard loud and clear. The eight proposals aim to solve the bullying challenge each in its own way. Some cover bullying only on school property, others take in a wider territory. We're here to give you a rundown on what they have in common and how they differ.