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City Council Holds Hearing On School Bullying

(Credit: Steve Tawa)

(Credit: Steve Tawa)

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – A Philadelphia City Council committee received some startling stats earlier this week while holding a hearing on bullying and violence in the city’s schools.

Ericka Washington, of the Philadelphia School District, took the microphone in council chambers and cited national statistics saying 15 to 19 percent of students are bullied.

Elected leaders took in the results. Councilman Curtis Jones said, point of information, “That’s one in five.”

Councilwoman Jannie Blackwell called it an, “important observation,” saying it was, “quite a large number.

Tomas Hanna, also with the school district, told council that the district identified 46 schools as being ‘persistently dangerous.’ Average daily attendance at these schools was down and chronic truancy rates were up. However, Hanna says the, “needle is headed in the right direction.”

One tactic includes what he calls in-school suspension rather than sending a kid on the street if they do something wrong.

“Our schools are still using out of school suspension, trust me. But this in-school suspension piece is something that we think is a positive strategy,” Hanna said.

All schools now have a tool kit on anti-violence and anti-bullying initiatives.

Reported by Steve Tawa, KYW Newsradio

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