Assemblyman David McDonough, R-Merrick, and other local elected officials recently lauded the passage of New York's cyberbullying law. Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed the Dignity for All Students Act into law Monday.
According to the Daily News:
The bill requires schools to develop proper protocol to deal with complaints of email, texting or online harassment and designate an official to handle investigations.
Districts will also have to develop preemptive measures to prevent recurrences and create age-appropriate curriculum for students from kindergarten to 12th grade on “safe, responsible use of Internet and electronic communications” as well as “civility, citizenship and character education.”
The state Education Department plans to develop guidance on implementing the requirements by the time the law goes into effect on July 1, 2013, Newsday reported.
However the bill does not make cyberbullying a crime.
"With this legislation we have helped bring the Dignity for All Students Act in line with the socially diverse world of our children," McDonough said.
“While we had an extensive Code of Conduct in place already, the Dignity Act protects more specifically certain groups in the student population from bullying and harassment," said Seaford Superintendent of Schools Brian Conboy. "Come September, we plan to have frank discussions with our staff members on how to detect when a student is being mistreated and we will incorporate into our Character Education program all aspects of the new legislation as required.”