Moorhead Changes Anti-Bullying Policy To Match State Law - Valley News Live - KVLY/KXJB - Fargo/Grand Forks

Moorhead Changes Anti-Bullying Policy To Match State Law

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Right before school gets into full swing Moorhead Public Schools is updating some of its policies.

 The state of Minnesota used to have what was considered the weakest law to prevent bullying. Now a new one to toughen up on bullies has been implemented and Moorhead Public Schools is modeling its policy off of it, but what it used to have in its policy to hold everyone responsible isn't required by the state.

Line after line crossed out of Moorhead Public School's old anti-bullying policy, one that the school board has been updating to meet the new state law passed in an effort to crack down on bullying.

"We took a model policy from the MN School Board Association and adapted it according to new laws in Minnesota," Moorhead Public Schools Superintendent, Dr. Lynne Kovash said.

 What has been crossed out in Moorhead's old policy is this: "This policy applies not only to students who directly engage in an act of bullying but also to students who, by their indirect behavior, support another student's act of bullying."

 It's an imperative line that one Sanford psychologist says she's seen have an affect on kids before.

"The queen be, it's the leader of the bullies so to speak. It doesn't mean that the people around her are bullying but they're not helping the victim or they're contributing to the bullying by following the queen bee," Dr. Rebecca Preussler, a Sanford psychologist said.

Kovash said just because these lines will be removed to model the state law it doesn't mean students will not be held accountable for their behavior in school.

"It's being dropped but there is much more about education and working with students," Kovash said.

State law does require all staff to be trained on how to prevent bullying and it also requires schools to assign someone specifically to handle reports that occur.

Governor Mark Dayton signed the bullying prevention bill into law in April which will take effect in all schools this fall.

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