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Hillary Clinton Promises Federal Dollars in Fight to End LGBT Bullying in Schools

Hillary Clinton
Andrew Harnik/AP

The Better Than Bullying initiative rewards inclusive anti-bullying efforts in schools with federal dollars.

Presidential nominee Hillary Clinton is promising more funding for schools that embrace anti-bullying policies protecting LGBT youth.

The Better Than Bullying initiative would provide $500 million to schools across the country that work toward bullying prevention, or $4 dollars for every $1 spent on new or improved programs.

Improved programs could include better teacher training, more counselors, or policies to address specific concerns like cyberbullying and teen suicide.

The campaign builds on the Every Student Succeeds Act, an education law passed this year which allows states to measure school success through language and math skills as well as a third metric of their choosing--which could include school climate and safety.

Despite these federal opportunities, the success of reducing LGBT school bullying will rely heavily on states. While all states have anti-bullying laws on their books, only about 20 include language specifically on sexual orientation and gender identity.

What's worse, at least eight states have "don't say gay" laws preventing school staff from openly discussing sexuality, which severely hampers LGBT student who wish to report being bullied because of their sexuality or gender.

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