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SPECIAL REPORT


Meanwhile, The Kansas State Department of Educa-


tion addresses bullying in its reopening guidance for all school districts in the state. “Navigating Change: Kansas Guide to Learning and School Safety Operations,” states that bus seats should be filled from the back to the front to avoid students walking past each other. However, it also states that school district officials still need to be cautious about having students of various ages sit to- gether due to bullying and other issues. Iowa has also been proactive in addressing bullying.


The Iowa Department of Education sponsors an An- ti-Bullying/Anti-Harassment program that provides a legal definition of bullying and identifies different types of bullying. The guidance states that the presence of a power imbalance between involved parties is required for an action to truly be considered bullying and be eligible for prosecution. The state requires all public and accredited non-public schools have an anti-bullying and anti-harassment policy in place. Further, the Iowa law defines bullying and harassment


as any electronic, written, verbal, or physical act or con- duct towards a student, which is based on any actual or


perceived trait or characteristic of the student and which creates an objectively hostile school environment that meets one or more of the following conditions:


• Places the student in reasonable fear of harm to the student’s person or property.


• Has a substantially detrimental effect on the student’s physical or mental health.


• Has the effect of substantially interfering with a stu- dent’s academic performance.


• Has the effect of substantially interfering with the student’s ability to participate in or benefit from the services, activities, or privileges provided by a school.


“Having a law for schools that specifically defines bully- ing and outlines its detrimental effects to individuals and society has helped school officials strengthen their an- ti-bullying and anti-harassment efforts in schools across the state,” said Bradley C Niebling, Ph.D., chief bureau of learner strategies and supports for Iowa Department of Education. ●


TRANSPORTING STUDENTS WITH DISABILITIES AND SPECIAL NEEDS


NOV. 9 – 11, 2020 VIRTUAL CONFERENCE AND TRADE SHOW


Keep up to date at tsdconference.com


24 School Transportation News • OCTOBER 2020


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