Edgar school district to implement new bullying policy

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The Edgar School Board has approved a new bullying policy in the district which is set to take effect Friday. It comes after months of discussion between the school district and families looking to see changes made to the policy.

The new district policy provides more specific definitions for what exactly bullying is. It also sets forth more specific steps for how bullying complaints will be addressed by district staff. Edgar School District Superintendent Cari Guden said in a statement that the policy will help the schools address any bullying concerns more fully and quickly.

Discussion about the district's bullying policy stems largely from the death of Edgar High School student Johnathan Wesener, who's parents say took his own life due to ongoing bullying at the school. His parents joined forces with other families in the community to bring about change in policy. They even say they presented the school board with a draft of a bullying policy. While Johnathan Wesener's father Steven says he is pleased to see that the district is making policy revisions, he feels they did not take enough of the community's recommendations that were presented in their initial draft.

"I figured they would build on what we presented to them, but they all claim they read what we gave them, but less than one percent was put into their policy which is kinda disheartening." Wesener says.

Despite his concerns, Wesener says he is glad changes are taking place. He says he would like to see more specific guidelines put into place regarding consequences for bullying.

Edgar School District Superintendent Cari Guden was not available to go on camera when contacted by Newschannel 7, however she did express gratitude for the community's interest in improving the school environment in a statement provided to the media.