S.C. lawmakers want to curb bullying in public schools.
On Tuesday, the House Education and Public Works Committee voted unanimously to advance a bill, sponsored by state Rep. Samuel Rivers, R-Berkeley, that would direct school districts to develop new ways for dealing with bullying.
The bill calls on school districts to have bullying policies that include informing parents when their children are accused of bullying, and outlining disciplinary actions taken or recommendations for counseling.
The bill is a milder version of another proposal, also by Rivers, that would create counseling requirements for bullies and their parents. That bill has not cleared out of committee.
The policy also would require schools to inform parents of bullied child of the steps being taken to prevent another incident and ways their child can report bullying.
School districts also would have to have procedures to refer students to outside mediation or counseling, and “alternative discipline.”
Alternative disciplinary actions include: meeting with the student’s parents; “reflective activities,” such as a child writing an essay about misbehaving; and in-school suspension or detention.
The bill now heads to the House floor.