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Editorial: Policy will help reduce school bullying

Bullying is a big deal. There have been plenty of stories about the drastic consequences that can result when a victim can't take any more. Stories about boys and girls who have taken their lives because their torment got so bad. But bullying certainly doesn't have to lead to death to cause problems.

Any number of middle school students can probably tell you about a bullying incident that made going to school a chore. Any number of adults can probably recall difficult times when they were younger.

While we hear plenty of stories about the welcoming atmosphere in Rosemount schools, it would be foolish to think bullying doesn't take place in the hallways at Rosemount High School, Rosemount Middle School or Rosemount Elementary.

The Rosemount-Apple Valley-Eagan School District has already put in place some policies to deal with bullying. They are scattered throughout other district policies. But there are certainly benefits to giving the issue its own policy. That policy, presented to school board members Monday, gives district employees a clear picture of what bullying is. It requires schools to put anti-bullying programs in place. And perhaps most important it makes it clear it is the responsibility of all district employees to stop bullying when it happens.

That is important. Bullying in any form has no place in school, and anything a school and a district can do to drive it out will make the school environment better.

By making the school environment better - by teaching students especially at a young age that bullying is not acceptable - schools can help improve the community.

That's a big deal, too.