Delaware state officials are strengthening efforts to crack down on bullying and cyber bullying. Gov. Jack Markell has signed a law that expands reporting requirements for incidents of school bullying. Under existing law, school districts must report substantiated cases of bullying to the state Department of Education. The new law requires reporting all incidents of bullying, regardless of whether they are substantiated by local officials. Another bill to be signed by Markell calls for a uniform statewide policy on cyber bullying to be adopted by all Delaware public schools. Officials have said the attorney general’s office will develop a carefully crafted cyber bullying policy that respects the free speech rights of students when they are not at school.

“One of the things that this bill does do is that it is much tougher on schools and school districts in terms of regularly reporting to the state and parents about what is happening with bullying in their schools. This bill that we put together is really carefully tailored to try to deal with both challenges – to try to make sure that we control this cyber bullying, but also do it in a way that is going to withstand any legal challenges,” said Lieutenant Gov. Matt Denn.

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