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Branstad announces Bullying Prevention Summit

This news story was published on August 6, 2012.
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(DES MOINES) – Gov. Terry Branstad and Lt. Gov. Kim Reynolds at their weekly news conference today announced that they will host the Governor’s Bullying Prevention Summit this fall, and encouraged all Iowans to engage on the important issue of bullying prevention.

The summit will be held on Nov. 27, at Hy-Vee Hall in Des Moines, and will feature a number of speakers from Iowa communities who will present their strategies at the summit. Also featured will be state and national experts about how to combat bullying, both offline and online.

Dr. Paul Gausman, superintendent of Sioux City Schools, joined Branstad and Reynolds at the news conference. He will talk about community involvement and efforts his community has taken to combat bullying.

The luncheon speaker will be Rosalind Wiseman, whose book became the basis of the movie, “Mean Girls.”

Registration will begin in September, and further details will be announced as that date gets closer.

“We believe we can, and we must, do more to stand up against bullying in Iowa,” said Branstad. “Iowans have a well-deserved reputation for neighborliness. Let’s leverage that tradition to put an end to bullying because all children deserve to feel safe at school.”

In the most recent Iowa Youth Survey of students in grades six, eight and 11, half of those surveyed reported being bullied in some way, and most youngsters witness the bullying of their peers sooner or later.

“Some people may ask, ‘Why is so much attention being paid to the issue of bullying now?’” said Reynolds. “Awareness is growing that what used to be excused as ‘kids being kids’ is more harmful than previously realized. Additionally, with the added threats from cyber-bullying, we can no longer discount bullying as a normal phase of childhood, or hope someone else will deal with the problem.”

The summit will be paid for with funding from the Iowa Department of Education, registration fees ($30 for adults older than age 22 and $20 for students) and generous support from the private sector.

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One Response to Branstad announces Bullying Prevention Summit

  1. My Voice Reply Report comment

    August 6, 2012 at 1:07 pm

    Matt, can you inquire if Anita M. or anyone else from MC school district upper management will be attending and post the answer. I think it will tell the answer if MCSD is serious about this issue. I’m not convinced they are as much as they could be.

    Thank you.