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Published November 30, 2011, 06:13 PM

Minnesota Schools Address Bullying

CROOKSTON, MN (WDAZ-TV) - Bullying happens in many different forms whether it's verbal, physical or through social media.

CROOKSTON, MN (WDAZ-TV) - Bullying happens in many different forms whether it's verbal, physical or through social media.

Governer Mark Dayton addressed bullying in schools this week and will appoint a task force to come up with the best ways to address the issue.

Some Minnesota schools are making an extra effort to make sure bullying is kept to a minimum, and students have the support they need.

18-year-old Kelsey Wolever sees bullying everyday.

"I see it happen a lot sometimes like texting, facebook about drama and people saying, 'oh, you said this!' and stuff," Wolever said.

Wolever is supporting a friend who was affected by a nasty message on Facebook. When issues like this happen, they turn to the school counselor.

"What I'm seeing is more of the cyber-bullying and that has certainly changed the face of what I do up here at the school," counselor Jackie Robertson said.

The Crookston school district is taking a proactive approach to anti-bullying education, support groups and counseling programs.

"I don't see this as something that's been in any way ignored that we're really on top of this because we want to focus on what's best for children," Crookston Schools Superintendent Wayne Gilman said.

Minnesota's existing anti-bullying law requires districts to have written policies prohibiting bullying. The governor and attorney general want that law to be made tougher.

"North Dakota's passed a strong law that the national website bully police gave an A plus rating. Minnesota's law has been given a C minus and we can do better," Minnesota Attorney General Lori Swanson said.

Governor Dayton says he will appoint a task force to find the best ways to address bullying and keep schools safe for everyone.

"It's a school and everyone should be able to get along. Everyone thinks high school is so bad but if there's no drama it would be such a wonderful thing," Wolever said.

Minnesota Attorney General Lori Swanson has proposed legislation modeled after a law in North Dakota, that among other things, requires school districts to respond to bullying within 24 hours.

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