City schools get new anti-harassment rules

September 3, 2008 4:03:24 PM PDT
New York City schools are taking aim against bullying.Mayor Michael Bloomberg and Schools Chancellor Joel Klein announced new rules to stop bias-based bullying and harassment.

Under the rules, students who believe they have been victims of harassment by another student will be urged to report it.

The policy was spelled out in posters displayed at city schools.

Brochures outlining the "Respect for All" policy went out in students' backpacks Tuesday.

It's a response to three attacks on Sikh students at the end of last school year. All of them took place in Queens public schools.

In the most serious attack, 18-year-old Jagmohan Singh Premi had his turban ripped off at Richmond Hill High School. His injuries were so bad, he had to be hospitalized.

Jagmohan is one of thousands of New Yorkers who practice Sikhism, an Indian religion that forbids men to shave or cut their hair, which must be worn in a turban.

In May, a student at another Queens school had his turban removed and his hair cut off. Schools Chancellor Joe Klein has previously met with the Sikh community and said new bias regulations were being implemented.

Also, on June 9, a 12-year-old girl had her long hair cut off by a fellow student at Public School 219 in Flushing.

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