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The Utah Board of Education has done its job. Now it is up to local school districts and charter schools to implement a new policy designed to crack down on bullying and hazing in the public schools.
The recently adopted 5-page policy clearly defines what constitutes bullying and hazing. It lets educators and students know what kind of behavior is unacceptable, including "any brutality of a physical nature," "forced or unwilling consumption of any food, liquor or drug," and "any forced or coerced act or activity of a sexual nature." The document also addresses the growing problem of so-called cyberbullying.
KSL encouraged the school board to adopt the policy, and we're pleased they did.
However, the new policy will only be effective to the extent local districts and charter schools take it to heart. Now, similar policies must be adopted at the local level. They must provide for "regular and meaningful training" of school employees and students. And they must provide for appropriate enforcement of the policies.
There is absolutely no place in Utah schools for bullying and hazing. Students and their parents deserve knowing everything possible is being done to eliminate it. The new policy, in KSL's view, will help.