The U.S. Department of Education will host the fourth Federal Partners in Bullying Prevention Summit—“Keeping Kids Safe: Opportunities and Challenges in Bullying Prevention”—on Friday, Aug. 15, at its headquarters, 400 Maryland Ave., S.W., Washington, D.C. Roberto Rodríguez, deputy assistant to the President; Deb Delisle, assistant secretary of the Office of Elementary and Secondary Education; and Michael Yudin, acting assistant secretary of the Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services; will deliver opening remarks. They will highlight some of the work the Administration has done to prevent bullying, as well as the work of federal partners, while also challenging everyone—including schools, students, educators, legislators and communities—to do more to address this issue.
Deputy Assistant Secretary Jonathan Brice also will participate in the summit. During the afternoon plenary session titled “Supportive School Discipline,” Brice will highlight the Department’s efforts to provide states with resources to address bullying and to build positive climate through Now Is the Time and School Climate Transformation grants. Following the plenary session, Brice will give closing remarks. The Supportive School Discipline Initiative is being led by the U.S. Departments of Education and Justice, with guidance and support from other federal agencies, including the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services (HHS).
“Every child is entitled to a safe and healthy learning environment,” Delisle said. “Schools can’t do it alone. We need the help of our federal partners, education and political leaders, schools and communities to assist in these efforts.”
At this year’s summit, HHS’ Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) will announce “KnowBullying,” a free smartphone app created to provide parents, caretakers, educators and others with information and communication support to help prevent bullying and build resilience in children. The app is designed to address the various needs of children ages 3 to 6, 7 to 13, and teens. Developed in collaboration with the StopBullying.gov federal partnership, KnowBullying is available for iPhone® and Android™ smartphones.
“The KnowBullying app empowers parents and caregivers by placing resources they need right in their hands to help prevent this serious behavioral health issue,” said Paolo del Vecchio, director of SAMHSA’s Center for Mental Health Services. “This needs to be part of a community-wide effort to help protect our children from the unnecessary harm, and in some cases devastating long-term consequences of bullying.” For more information about KnowBullying by SAMHSA, visit: http://store.samhsa.gov/apps/bullying. To learn more about SAMHSA, visit http://www.samhsa.gov.
Since the Department’s first-ever bullying summit in 2010, considerable effort has been made by both the public and private sectors to bring attention to bullying and the challenges of addressing it. This year’s summit will expand on previous years’ goals of crafting a national strategy to prevent bullying, and will work toward engaging private and public organizations committed to providing needed tools and resources to ensure the safety of students. The summit’s complete agenda can be found at: http://www.wciconferences.com/BullyingSummit-Inperson/agenda.html.
The summit, hosted by the U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Safe and Healthy Students in conjunction with the Federal Partners in Bullying Prevention, an inter-agency working group, is invitation-only for the public and already at capacity. The public can view and participate in the summit via the live stream by registering at (http://www.wciconferences.com/BullyingSummit-VirtualMeeting/index.html) and using Twitter and Facebook with the hashtag #BullyingSummit14 (https://twitter.com/StopBullyingGov; https://www.facebook.com/StopBullying.gov).