Anti-Bullying Bills Take Effect

By Amelia Pang
Epoch Times Staff
Created: July 1, 2012 Last Updated: July 4, 2012
Related articles: United States » New York City
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NEW YORK—Three anti-bullying bills, introduced to deal with bullying in city schools, came into effect July 1.

The Dignity for All Students Act (DASA), introduced by Manhattan Assemblyman Daniel O’Donnell, was passed in 2010. Under the act, teachers and administrators are required to undergo training to get skills to spot bullies, and to prevent bullying from recurring.

The act redefines civility in school by focusing on awareness and sensitivity of different races, weights, national origins, ethnic groups, and religions.

Two newer bills, also introduced by O’Donnell, A9535 and A9536, expand on the DASA.

The first bill, A9535, clarifies that the DASA applies to bullying on school grounds, and also cyberbullying through electronic communication. Schools will also be trained on how to prevent cyberbullying.

The second bill, A9536, will require school professionals applying for a certificate or license after July 2013, to complete coursework on discrimination and anti-bias.

“We just need to resist the temptation to determine that we know better than the experts,” O’Donnell said in a statement.

According to a survey released June 13, more than two-thirds of primary school students in New York state have either witnessed cyberbullying or have been victims themselves. The survey gathered responses from almost 10,000 students from 3rd to 12th grade.

The bills have no impact on the budget.

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