Bullying versus Reporting

I asked about the anti-lying bill in the House the other day, the one that would punish kids for falsely reporting on a teacher’s behavior, but this article in the MDJ suggests that the House bill could undermine the Senate anti-bullying measure.

Cyndie Westrich is on a mission to eliminate bullying from Georgia public schools. But she has encountered what she claims is a new adversary in her quest: House Bill 1321. However, others think HB 1321 is just a “common sense measure.”

Westrich, a licensed professional counselor and east Cobb mother, wrote the proposal for Senate Bill 461, which would enact stricter penalties for bullies throughout Georgia schools.

Both bills are aimed at reducing bullying in schools; however, Westrich, who has been in private practice since 1999, said that HB 1321 would undo much of what she hoped to accomplish.

“This bill discourages children from being able to make reports about child abuse. Further, it limits the press from being able to report and investigate,” she wrote yesterday to Sen. Chip Rogers (R-Woodstock). Rogers introduced Westrich’s anti-bullying legislation in the Senate.

He said he is not familiar with HB 1321, but continues to “fully support” SB 461.

6 comments

  1. the simpsons says:

    The truth must come out in this issue.
    Look for example at this story:
    http://www.abajournal.com/news/bullied_at_school_for_years_billy_wolfe_brings_suit_with_his_parents_help

    I am sorry, but this is not ‘kids will be kids’
    Plain and simple Georgia School Administrators are willfully ignoring the
    problem and have little knowledge (ignorance) on really how to help the issue.

    Assault and batteries are often not addressed even at the high school level. Why? Because the school administrations focus on Test Scores and worry about making those test scores. God forbid if someone actually stepped in and helped a kid being assaulted on a bus or in a school bathroom or on the Gym. I am not talking about kids calling kids ‘poo poo head’. I am talking about TEACHING AND LEARNING PROGRAMS THAT MUST BE IN PLACE IN EVERY SCHOOL, like what they have in Virginia, Delaware and many other states.

    If schools factually reported these incidents to the GA DOE under NCLB and the Safe Schools Act they would then enable themselves to receive additonal federal monies to improve school safety.
    Need we forget we all have put money into NCLB, but no one is enforcing it. The bureaucrats at the GA DOE openly supported HB 1321 at the hearing for SB 461.

  2. Matthew A says:

    Of course, there is little that Ms. Westrich doesn’t know about bullying. She and her husband have been bullying Cobb County teachers for years. And she and her progeny are expert in generating false reports of evil teachers and peer abuse.

  3. the simpsons says:

    Us bad bad parents wanting to hold schools accountable…hmm. This is the usual ‘line’ systems put out about parents trying to do something good for the students and even the teachers.

    A lot of teachers have to support SB 461 – behind the scenes, because of the workplace harassment issues that goes on every day of the week.

  4. bc_its_right says:

    I agree something needs to be done about bullying, but many have not been fully informed on this bill. The language does not go far enough in protecting those that are being bullied in Georgia Public Schools. The amendments broadening the term would put more at risk to be bullied and worse yet it still contains the self reporting and self investigations, which will remain INSIDE the schools. It does no good to report abuse and not have equal protections.

    Stand your ground – do NOT support SB 461 – until they give you EQUAL Protections under the law.

    Here’s a link you may be interested in reading:

    http://www.thepetitionsite.com/1/georgia-anti-bullying-legislation-sb461

    Just keeping people FULLY informed

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