Casey Calls for Swift Passage of Anti-Bullying Bill at Pittsburgh Elementary School

Casey Just Introduced Comprehensive, Bipartisan Bullying Bill

Senator, Students, Teachers and Administrators from Pittsburgh Mifflin Highlights Need for Action on Bullying

Pittsburgh, PA- Today, at Pittsburgh Mifflin Elementary School, U.S. Senator Bob Casey (D-PA) called for passage of his recently introduced legislation to prevent bullying and harassment in schools.

“Children deserve to go to school without fear or intimidation,” said Senator Casey. “Bullying and harassment affect millions of students every year. This legislation will help ensure that we are providing children with a quality education that builds self-confidence.”

The Safe Schools Improvement Act would require schools and districts that receive federal funding to adopt codes of conduct specifically prohibiting bullying and harassment, encouraging them to implement effective prevention programs to respond to incidents of bullying and harassment. Senator Casey introduced this legislation this week with Mark Kirk (R-IL) and other cosponsors.

The bill requires school districts receiving federal funds adopt codes of conduct specifically prohibiting bullying and harassment, including conduct based on a student’s actual or perceived race, color, national origin, sex, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity or religion. The bill also requires states to collect information on incidents of bullying and harassment and report this information to the Department of Education.  This data must also be readily available to the public so that parents and the local community may know what is happening in their schools.

Pittsburgh Mifflin Elementary School has been proactive in addressing this topic by introducing an anti-bullying program in 2011 to decrease and eliminate bullying and to keep all students safe. The Mifflin Anti-Bullying Program has served as a model for several other Pittsburgh Public Schools. They also have active involvement from their Parent Teacher Student Association (PTSA) and Parent School Community Council (PSCC) in structuring plans that involve parent and community support for the educational program and school safety.  

The Safe Schools Improvement Act has received broad support from educators, administrators and civil rights organizations, including the American Federation of Teachers, American School Health Association, National Association of School Psychologists, National Education Association, National Parent Teacher Association, American Association of University Women, Asian American Justice Center, the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network, Human Rights Campaign and the National Council of La Raza.

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April Mellody 202-228-6367