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Boise School District Trustees Will Consider Land Purchase, Update to Anti-Bullying Policy



Officials in the Boise School District are busy preparing to open the doors to more than 25,000 students as they head back to school on Monday, Aug. 24. But the district's board of trustees are also looking to the future, which is why on Monday, Aug. 10 trustees will consider a land purchase for a future school.

The trustees will be asked to purchase 50 acres in the southwest Boise Syringa Valley neighborhood. The land, between Orchard Road and the New York Canal, has a price tag of $2 million and the purchase would be contingent on a due diligence review.

During the same meeting, trustees will also be asked to sign off on an update to the school district's policy on bullying, hazing and harassment. The 2015 Idaho Legislature approved House Bill 246 to curb bullying and cyberbullying in Idaho schools. The new law is triggering updates to policy at school districts throughout Idaho.

According to the Idaho State Department of Education, one in 10 students have either switched schools or dropped out due to bullying. In particular, the new law requires Idaho school districts to provide ongoing professional development to help identify bullying and intervene on victims' behalf.

The Boise School District is poised to add the following sentence to its policy: "The District shall provide ongoing professional development in prevention, identification and response to harassment, intimidation and bullying." Additionally, the policy update will require the school district to annually report any bulling incidents to the Idaho State Department of Education. 

The Boise Independent School District has had an anti-bullying policy in effect since 2003.