By Alison Henderson
In an attempt to address GLBT-targeted bullying, Anoka-Hennepin School District has established an anti-bullying campaign and a sexual orientation curriculum.
The campaign, Know NO! Know, follows lawsuits, a federal investigation and other issues related to GLBT-targeted bullying within the school district, according to a report from the Star Tribune .
Teachers serve as a watchful eye and are expected to enforce a zero-tolerance bullying policy. They are also expected to handle the sexual orientation curriculum in a neutral manner.
The neutrality policy is a "reasonable way to balance the family ideologies seen in the suburban Minneapolis district," according to a USA Today report.
Though it has taken hold, the campaign is controversial, and many express concerns.
Becky Marshall, a science teacher at Anoka Middle School for the Arts and mentor for the school's Gay Straight Alliance (GSA), said teachers are learning how to appropriately address the issue without repercussions from parents.
"We know how to deal with bullying; we don't know how to deal with being neutral. There's a fear there, and it would be so much better if ... there was that confidence to stand up and say, I support these students, no matter what," Marshall told the Star Tribune.
The district is looking at concerns from students, teachers and community members as it moves forward with this process.