Some schools in Virginia are taking a step to address bullying by explaining their school policies loud and clear.
Virginia Beach area schools may not be changing its policies; however, officials introduced a resolution letting people know that it won’t tolerate bullying against gay students and teachers.
School board member Joel McDonald and members thought about asking legislators to add “sexual orientation” and “gender identity” to classes protected under the Virginia Human Rights Act.
Supporters considered adding “sexual orientation” to the school board’s own policies.  However, the board’s attorney said localities couldn’t legally add the language to their own policies if it isn’t in the Human Rights Act.
The proposal soon became a continuing resolution; confirmation to the board’s commitment to school environment that is harassment-free.  It also allows the superintendent direction to explore staff and student concerns regard how sexual orientation and gender identity affect the environment.
According to The Virginia-Pilot, Veronica Salcedo, teacher and leader of Bayside High School’s Gay Straight Alliance, stated that the resolution is “a step in the right direction.”
What do you think about the resolution? Do you think more schools should make it known that they won’t stand for harassment?  Should schools alter their policies to include sexual orientation and gender identity? 
To read the full article, visit The Virginia-Pilot website here.


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