State and local lawmakers have taken action to prevent bullying and protect children. Each jurisdiction—including all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and U.S. territories (state)—addresses bullying differently. Some have established laws, policies, and regulations. Others have developed model policies schools and local educational agencies (districts) can use as they develop their own local laws, policies, and regulations.

Most state laws, policies, and regulations require districts and schools to implement a bullying policy and procedures to investigate and respond to bullying when it occurs. A handful of states also require bullying prevention programs, inclusion of bullying prevention in health education standards, and teacher professional development. These state laws generally do not prescribe specific consequences for kids who engage in bullying behavior, and very few classify bullying as a criminal offense. Further, states may address bullying, cyberbullying, and related behaviors in a single law (statute) or in multiple laws (education code, criminal code). In some states, bullying laws are included in the sections of the criminal code that apply to juveniles.

Although no federal law directly addresses bullying, in some cases, bullying overlaps with discriminatory harassment when it is based on race, national origin, color, sex, age, disability, or religion. When bullying and harassment overlap, federally-funded schools (including colleges and universities) have an obligation to resolve the harassment. When the situation is not adequately resolved, the U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights and the U.S. Department of Justice’s Civil Rights Division may be able to help.

State Statutes for the State of Texas


request of a parent or other person with authority to act on behalf of a student who is a victim of bullying , the board of trustees of a school district or the board's designee shall transfer the victim to: (b-1) The board of trustees of a school district may transfer the student who engaged in bullying to


(1) bullying that occurs on or is delivered to school property or to the site of a school-sponsored (2) bullying that occurs on a publicly or privately owned school bus or vehicle being used for transportation (c) The board of trustees of each school district shall adopt a policy, including any necessary procedures , concerning bullying that:

Federal Statutes

§ 10401. Program authorized

(13) establishing and maintaining accountability-based programs that are designed to enhance school safety, which programs may include research-based bullying, cyberbullying, and gang prevention programs

§ 6311. State plans

educational agency will support local educational agencies receiving assistance under this part to improve school conditions for student learning, including through reducing— (i) incidences of bullying and harassment