New bullying guidelines in DuPage Co.

February 25, 2011 10:00:55 AM PST
Bullying has become a problem across the country in recent months.

On Friday morning, officials in DuPage County came up with a new policy to help teachers and school administrators stop bullying.

Bullies beware: There is a new way to stop bullying in DuPage County schools.

School officials and the DuPage County State's Attorney discussed the new plan Friday morning. It's an anti-bullying plan which will be in effect in all schools.

    These guidelines were created by an anti-bullying task force made up of school officials and prosecutors:
  • Schools will have ongoing training for teachers on how to spot bullying in class and online.
  • They'll learn how to officially define bullying.
  • They'll make the issue part of the school curriculum, solving individual bullying cases before punishment needs to be enforced.

On Friday, school officials met for an anti-bullying seminar, and the state's attorney and the regional superintendent unveiled the new plan in Wheaton. It will start immediately at three schools for a pilot program. But all schools in DuPage County will eventually implement the new guidelines.

"I got phone calls often from parents and they are saying, 'Can't we do something?' I talked to the teachers. I talked to the principals. I have gone to the superintendent. There doesn't seem to be a remedy," said DuPage County Regional Superintendent Darlene Roscitti. "And so I think just all these things kind of collided at once, and we said you know what, "we're going to approach this holistically. Not one shot."

"The approach the task force has taken is an interventional approach. It stresses intervention and remedial efforts as opposed to punishment," said DuPage County State's Attorney Robert Berlin. "It's a realization that the old models of addressing bullying aren't working. So it's a holistic approach. It involves school administrators, teachers, guidance counselors, parents and the children themselves."

The DuPage County state's attorney and regional superintendent both say that they take this issue about bullying very personally. They are very passionate about it.