RI education officials look at bullying and sexual orientation

PROVIDENCE, R.I. – The Rhode Island Department of Education is holding a forum today to address bullying related to sexual orientation.

State Education Commissioner Deborah Gist says the forum comes in response to incidents of bullying in other states against students who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender.

She says state officials want to get ahead of the problem before a student in Rhode Island gets hurt.

"We felt it was important to make the awareness more broad across our state, to make sure everybody understands what our expectations are but also how to best address these issues," Gist says.

Recent suicides in other states have been linked to teen bullying. Today's forum aims to highlight the issue and share methods aimed at improving school safety.

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