State Senate approves school transgender anti-bullying bill

OLYMPIA, Wash. (AP) — The Washington state Senate has passed an anti-bullying measure that would require policies intended to protect transgender students in public schools.

The Spokane Spokesman-Review reported on Wednesday that Democrats who consider the legislation a basic school safety measure prevailed in a party-line vote over Republicans who argue the bill takes authority away from local school districts.

The bill has moved to the state House for consideration.

The bill would require the superintendent of public instruction and the school administrators association to develop strategies to eliminate gender-identity discrimination and address specific challenges for those public school students.

Republican Minority Leader Mark Schoesler said anti-bullying protections already exist, while Democratic Sen. Lisa Wellman said the measure will help prevent cases from being overlooked.

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