February 3, 2012
COLUMBUS – State Senator Peggy Lehner (R – Kettering) today applauded the enactment of House Bill 116, a measure to curb the growing and dangerous problem of bullying in Ohio’s schools.
Sponsored by Representative John Barnes (D – Cleveland), the bill received strong bipartisan support from Republicans and Democrats in both legislative chambers. As Chairwoman of the Senate Education Committee, Senator Lehner played a key role in crafting the final version of the bill and seeing its passage in the upper chamber.
Also known as the “Jessica Logan Act” in memory of a young woman who recently took her own life after being the target of devastating acts of bullying, the legislation calls on school districts to strengthen anti-bullying policies by defining “electronic acts” of harassment and extending them to the realm of “cyberbullying.” Annual reviews and in-service staff training will also be conducted to ensure that school personnel are kept up to speed regarding the newest technologies associated with bullying. Additionally, parents will be notified of changes to school policies and will be encouraged to work along with the schools in enforcing its provisions.
“Parents and educators alike play a valuable role in seeing that this sort of behavior among our children is not tolerated,” Lehner said. “I would like to thank my colleagues from both sides of the aisle for recognizing the importance and urgency of this legislation.”
House Bill 116 was signed into law this afternoon by Governor John Kasich.