The Reality

According to Deborah Temkin, Ph.D., of Child Trends, a non-profit organization in Bethesda, Maryland, and a recognized leader in the fields of school climate and school-based prevention, that the fact that the law was passed does not always means that it will automatically change behaviours. As she states, it is a job of schools toContinue reading “The Reality”


Even though nearly all states require the development of school policies on bullying, we know little about their implementation or effectiveness. School policies must conform to legal requirements set forth in state antibullying laws, but should also reflect best practices informed by scientific research. In light of available evidence, we recommend that school policies onContinue reading “Recommendations”

Bullying within state criminal laws

Bullying is viewed as a disciplinary action rather than as a criminal act. it was never considered seriously. Bullying issue was either ignored or considered as disciplinary issue at schools. State bullying laws do not criminalize bullying however, there are state criminal laws which can be applied to some bullying actions. For instance, when assaultContinue reading “Bullying within state criminal laws”

Challenges of conflating bullying with other peer aggression in state law

State laws tend to define bullying broadly and to eschew the academic definition of bullying, particularly its focus on power imbalance. The emphasis in most state laws is on the harmful effects of bullying rather than whether the aggressor has dominance or power over the victim. On one hand, this seems reasonable because when aContinue reading “Challenges of conflating bullying with other peer aggression in state law”

Challenges of conflating harassment and bullying in state laws

Harassment, unlike bullying, is a behavior that has been long addressed in state and federal law. Under state law, harassment typically is characterized as unwanted behavior that demeans, threatens or offends another and results in a hostile environment for the victim. As previously discussed, under federal law, it is a violation of civil rights toContinue reading “Challenges of conflating harassment and bullying in state laws”

State laws on bullying

Since 1999, state legislatures have been remarkably active on bullying in schools. From 1990 to 2010, more than 120 bills were enacted by the states to introduce or amend education or criminal justice statutes that address bullying. By 2015, every state had passed a law that directs school districts or individual schools to develop policiesContinue reading “State laws on bullying”

Federal guidance on bullying and harassment

There is a series of “Dear Colleague” letters from the U.S. Department of Education to school authorities due to which education standards on bullying are emerging. In 2010, the department’s Office for Civil Rights sent such letters to schools nationwide. The letters provided guidance on how to deal with bullying. The letters highlighted the formsContinue reading “Federal guidance on bullying and harassment”

Do U.S. laws go far enough to prevent bullying at school?

The reduction of bulling is a nationwide effort in U.S. and can be viewed as a major aspect of bigger common and human rights developments that have furnished kids and have provided children with many of the rights afforded to adults. Two events in 1999 were turning points in the recognition of school bullying asContinue reading “Do U.S. laws go far enough to prevent bullying at school?”

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