The Safe Schools Improvement Act addresses GLSENs federal policy recommendations (outlined in the publication
Bridging the Gap in Federal Law
). Members of the National Safe Schools Partnership have signed on to these recommendations to promote school safety and improve student achievement for all students, through legislation that will comprehensively address the issues of bullying and harassment.
Key education organizations include:
American Association of School Administrators
American Federation of Teachers
American School Counselor Association
American School Health Association
National Education Association
National Association for the Education of Homeless Children and Youth
National Association of School Psychologists
National Association of Secondary School Principals
National Association of State Directors of Special Education
School Social Work Association of America
Society of State Directors of Health, Physical Education and Recreation
Bullying and harassment are widespread problems with significant adverse consequences for students.
Bullying and harassment directly interferes with student learning and achievement, while threatening the safety and well-being of millions of students each year.
The U.S. Department of Education has concluded that bullying and harassment affects nearly one in every three American school children in grades six through ten and another confirms that harassment in schools is experienced by a majority of students.
Bullying can result in long-term social, academic, psychological and physical consequences, including decreased interest in school, increased absences and decreased concentration levels for students;
The Safe Schools Improvement Act helps to address this problem.
The Safe Schools Improvement Act will strengthen the Safe and Drug Free Schools and Communities Act to ensure that:
Schools and districts have comprehensive and effective student conduct policies that include clear prohibitions regarding bullying and harassment;
Schools and districts focus on effective prevention strategies and professional development designed to help school personnel meaningfully address issues associated with bullying and harassment;
States and districts maintain and report data regarding incidents of bullying and harassment in order to inform the development of effective federal, state, and local policies that address these issues.
Facts about the Safe Schools Improvement Act:
In the 110th Congress, the Act (as H.R. 3132 by Representatives Sanchez and Ros-Lehtinen) received the support of a record 79 bipartisan cosponsors
All critical elements of H.R. 3132 were included in Senator Kennedy and Enzi's October 2007 discussion draft to reauthorize the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 (other portions of H.R. 3132 were included in Congressmen Miller and McKeon's draft reauthorization legislation).
The Act is being introduced to the 111th Congress by Representatives Linda T. Sanchez (D-CA), Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL), and Carolyn McCarthy (D-NY)
GLSEN encourages every member to support the Safe Schools Improvement Act
Cosponsor by contacting Congresswoman Linda T. Sanchez's office.
Support including the SSIA in education reauthorization legislation.