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Lawmakers Consider Updating Anti-Bullying Laws

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Connecticut students could soon get more protections from cyberbullying.

Lawmakers are considering a bill to update anti-bullying regulations to include harassing emails, text messages and social network postings. The proposal also requires school administrators to contact police about any bullying that might constitute criminal conduct.

The legislature’s education committee is holding a public hearing Friday on the proposals.

A 2009 state report found one of every four Connecticut high school students said they had been bullied or harassed on school property over the past year.

Among freshmen, the number was one in three.

Connecticut’s first anti-bullying legislation went into effect in 2003. It was updated in 2006 and 2008, but does not mention cyberbullying.

Massachusetts and several other states have added electronic harassment to their anti-bullying laws.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)

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