Bill requiring school district bullying policies passes House committee

By David Montgomery

Bullying Policies Passes House CommiteeA bill requiring South Dakota schools to put in place a bullying policy passed the House Education Committee on Monday after a debate over local control.

SB 130 would require each school district have a bullying policy, provide suggestions for what such a policy should include and write a model policy that would take effect if school districts didn’t act.

The debate in committee centered not on whether the bill should pass but in what form. Specifically, some lawmakers supported saying districts “shall” include certain criteria, while others preferred saying they “may” include those criteria.

Attorney General Marty Jackley proposed the looser language.

“An anti-bullying policy should have local control as its cornerstone,” Jackley said. “I would submit to you that what goes on in my hometown of Sturgis, South Dakota, is different from what goes on in Sioux Falls.”

Full story of bullying policies at Rapid City Journal