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Anti-Bullying Policy
 
249.  ANTI-BULLYING
 
1.   Purpose
Dunmore School District recognizes that bullying of students has a negative effect on the educational environment of its schools. Students who are bullied, intimidated or fearful of other students may not be able to take full advantage of the educational opportunities offered by the school district. Bullying of a student by another student is strictly prohibited on school property, in school buildings, on school buses, and at school-sponsored events and/or activities whether occurring on or off campus.
 
2.   Definition
Bullying shall mean unwelcome verbal, written or physical conduct directed at a student by another student(s) that has the intent and effect of:
 
  1. Physically harming a student (e.g., hitting, kicking, spitting, pushing, and invading one's personal space in an aggressive manner).
  2. Damaging, extorting or taking a student's personal property.
  3. Placing a student in reasonable fear of physical harm.
  4. Placing a student in emotional unrest by spreading rumors, manipulating social relationships or environment, engaging in social exclusion, extortion, intimidation, and ridicule.
  5. Cyber-bullying: forms of verbal and psychological bullying may also occur on the Internet through e-mail, instant messaging, or personal profile web sites such as My-Space.
  6. Creating an intimidating or hostile environment that substantially interferes with a student's educational opportunities.
  7. Creating verbal statements or written remarks that are taunting, malicious, threatening or sexual.
 
 
 
 
The term bullying shall not be interpreted to infringe upon a student's right to engage in legally protected speech or conduct.
3.   Authority
The school district will not tolerate known acts of bullying occurring on school district property, at school-sponsored activities scheduled on or off school grounds or during the time students necessarily spend traveling to and from school or school-sponsored activities, including bus stops and routes of travel to and from the bus stops or to school property or school-sponsored events.
4.   Delegation of Responsibility
The district expects employees who observe or become aware of an act of bullying or extortion to take immediate, appropriate steps to intervene. If an employee believes that his/her intervention has not resolved the matter, or if the bullying or extortion persists, s/he shall report the bullying or extortion to the school principal for further investigation. If proper reporting is not engaged in by the employee in a position to observe the conduct, the district reserves the right to impose discipline on the employee as deemed appropriate under the circumstances.
5.   Guidelines
 
 
Student, Parent/Guardian And Employee Reporting
The school district strongly encourages all students and parents/guardians who become aware of any act of bullying to immediately report that conduct. Students may report acts of bullying to their teachers, building principal or other school employees supervising school-sponsored activities. Parents/Guardians may contact the building principal to report acts of bullying.
If employees cannot reasonably remediate acts of bullying through their own intervention, they should report the bullying to the building principal.
 
Investigation Procedures
Each building principal or designee is authorized to investigate reports of bullying brought to their attention by students, parents/guardians or school employees or bus drivers. Any investigation of a report may include meetings with students, parents/ guardians or employees, a review of student records, and other reasonable efforts to understand the facts surrounding a reported incident.
The Board prohibits any retaliatory behavior directed against complainants, victims, witnesses, and/or other individuals who participate in the investigation of allegations of bullying.
 
 
      Pol. 218, 233
 
Consequences/Discipline
Consequences for students who are found to have bullied others may include counseling, a parent/guardian conference, detention, suspension, expulsion, a loss of school privileges and/or exclusion from school-sponsored activities as defined in the Code of Student Conduct.
Depending upon the severity of a particular situation, the building principal may also take the appropriate steps to ensure students' safety. Such steps may include separating and supervising the students involved; providing employee support for students as needed; reporting incidents to law enforcement, if appropriate; and the implementation of a safety plan and/or a supervision plan with parents/guardians.
 
 
 
      Pol. 248
Interplay With Other School District Policies
Nothing in this policy shall prevent school employees from enforcing, imposing discipline or fulfilling their professional responsibilities under other school district policies or student disciplinary rules.
This policy shall not be interpreted as preventing a student or parent/guardian from filing a complaint under the school district's anti-harassment policy.
 
      20 U.S.C.
      Sec. 1232g
Confidentiality
Dunmore School District recognizes that both the complaining student and the alleged bully/extorter have strong interest in maintaining the confidentiality of the allegations and related information. The privacy of the complaining student, the individual(s) against whom the complaint is filed, and the witnesses will be respected as much as possible, consistent with legal obligations to investigate, to take appropriate action, and to comply with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) and any discovery or disclosure obligations. As limited by FERPA protections, the principal or his/her designee may inform the complaining student/parents/guardians of the outcome of the investigation.
 
 
 
 
Reprisal
Any student who retaliates against another student for reporting bullying or for assisting or testifying in the investigation or hearing may be subject to consequences as defined in the Code of Student Conduct.
References:
Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act – 20 U.S.C. Sec. 1232g
Board Policy – 218, 233, 248

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