SC parents could be held accountable if their child bullies other students

COLUMBIA, S.C. (WSPA)- A few South Carolina lawmakers are looking for others ways to fight bullying in schools. A new bill would require parents to be a part of the process if their child gets in trouble for bullying.

It's called the Bullying Prohibition Act or B.P Act for short. The bill would require a student to attend counseling at least two times with a parent if the student "commits an act of harassment, intimidation or bullying" as stated in the bill.

"Bullying is out of control in our schools and that's probably the biggest complaint I get from parents. none of us should have to go where we're afraid. where we know we're going to get hurt. where we know someone is going to attack us," said Representative Linda Bennett (R), District 114- Charleston.

The bill requires school districts to develop a plan that defines what those terms mean and the appropriate consequences for it. And if a student is suspended they'll have to complete the counseling before they can return to school.

"We want to help them and their parents get control of the problems that they have whether it's anger, frustration, attention getting whatever it is that's causing this child to be so disruptive," explained Bennett.

Lawmakers say getting the parents involved is important because they can help prevent bullying and get to the root of the problem, but Representative Bennett says this bill could also help fix other problems in our schools. Bennett added, "We're losing teachers because we have no discipline in our classrooms so that would really help with a multitude of problems we're facing."

The bill calls for 5 counseling sessions, 2 of which the parent has to attend. The bill wouldn't add any extra costs to a school district instead the schools would use resources they already have, like guidance counselors, and school psychologists.

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