Harassment and Bullying

In order to facilitate implementation, provide meaningful guidance and prevent behaviors from rising to a violation of law, this policy will use and explain the term bullying (which is subsumed under the term “harassment”), which is understood to be a hostile activity which harms or induces fear through the threat of further aggression and/or creates terror. Bullying may be premeditated or a sudden activity. It may be subtle or easy to identify, done by one person or a group. Bullying often includes the following characteristics:

  • Power imbalance – occurs when a bully uses his/her physical or social power over a target.
  • Intent to harm – the bully seeks to inflict physical or emotional harm and/or takes pleasure in this activity.
  • Threat of further aggression – the bully and the target believe the bullying will continue.
  • Terror – when any bullying increases, it becomes a “systematic violence or harassment used to intimidate and maintain dominance.”

There are at least three kinds of bullying: verbal, physical and social/relational.

Verbal bullying

Verbal bullying includes name calling, insulting remarks, verbal teasing, frightening phone calls, violent threats, extortion, taunting, gossip, spreading rumors, racist slurs, threatening electronic communications (“cyber-bullying”), anonymous notes, etc.

Physical bullying

Physical bullying includes poking, slapping, hitting, tripping or causing a fall, choking, kicking, punching, biting, pinching, scratching, spitting, twisting arms or legs, damaging clothes and personal property, or threatening gestures.

Social or relational bullying

Social or relational bullying includes excluding someone from a group, isolating, shunning, spreading rumors or gossiping, arranging public humiliation, undermining relationships, teasing about clothing, looks, giving dirty looks, aggressive stares, etc.

In each building, the head administrator/designee is responsible for receiving oral or written complaints alleging violations of this policy.

Students may report complaints of bullying, harassment, or discrimination to any school district employee. All district employees who receive reports of bullying, harassment, or discrimination will file a written report. Bullying Reporting forms are available in the Main Office.