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School district agrees to stop bullying

Dec. 16, 2010 at 9:24 AM   |   Comments

PHILADELPHIA, Dec. 16 (UPI) -- The Philadelphia School District has agreed to implement guidelines to protect students from racial bias following complaints filed by Asian students.

The settlement between the school district and the U.S. Department of Justice requires the district to implement a plan to handle student harassment complaints and remains in effect until June 30, 2013, The Washington Post reported.

The settlement follows complaints filed by the Asian American Legal Defense Fund after about 30 Asian students were injured in a series of attacks in or near South Philadelphia High School on Dec. 3, 2009.

The district was notified by the Justice Department in July it had deprived Asian students of equal protection "by remaining deliberately indifferent to know instances of severe and pervasive student-on-student harassment of Asian students based on their race, color, and/or national origin."

The district denied those findings but chose to reach a settlement to prevent further action, The Philadelphia Inquirer reported.

U.S. Attorney Zane David Memeger said the department would keep a close eye on the school district.

"We hope that this resolution makes it clear to the school district that the Department of Justice truly believes that students are entitled to be in a safe environment," Memeger said in a Philadelphia Daily News report.

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