Republican Senators propose alternative anti-bullying legislation

By KBJR News 1

Credit: MGNonline.com

Republican Senators propose alternative anti-bullying legislation

March 11, 2014 Updated Mar 11, 2014 at 9:39 AM CST

St. Paul, MN (NNCNOW.com) - Republican state senators say they have an alternative to the much touted Safe and Supportive Schools Act which aims to strengthen the state's anti-bullying law.

The "Stamp Out Bullying Bill" is based on North Dakota Law and calls for schools to create policies for bullying in schools.

Senator Roger Chamberlain, a co-author of the bill, wrote on his Facebook Page that SF 2411 "protects all kids equally, retains parental rights and local control."

The Senator calls the Safe and Supportive Schools Act an anti-parenting bill rather than an anti-bullying bill. Critics say the DFL's anti-bullying bill, HF 826, would put a burden on already cash-strapped school districts.

The Senate Committee on Education was expected to discuss the DFL bill, authored by Senator Scott Dibble, Tuesday afternoon.

Sen. Dibble says the GOP bill has good elements, but "has some key omissions, like clarity of definition. The Senator went on to say "(It) would be unlikely to actually make a difference for the better in kids' school lives"

Backers of "Stamp Out Bullying" say it has support from the Minnesota Association of School Boards.

The state's current anti-bullying law, spelled out in 37 words, is said to be among the weakest in the nation.

View the dueling bills for yourself:
SF 2411 "Stamp Out Bullying"
HF 826 "Safe & Supportive Schools Act"