Lawmakers put a bill on hold Wednesday that would require school districts to craft bullying and hazing policies.
While most agreed it was a good idea in theory, the House Education Committee took no action because some lawmakers were concerned with bullying definitions like "embarrassing" a student. They were also worried that it could result in students being punished for harmless teasing.
But the sponsor of the bill, Rep. Carol Spackman Moss, D-Holladay, said that the requirements in the bill for districts to create or alter policies on bullying were drawn from legislation in other states. Local school leaders would be able to create their own policies.
"Those who oppose this fear that somehow we will be putting laws in place that will somehow punish people for minor infractions, calling names or something," Moss said. "But in fact all this does is direct the State Office to direct school to alter their policies on bullying, hazing and cyber bullying."