Responding to Bullying Texas House Bill 1942 O Texas House Bill 1942 was passed to address how schools must make their campuses safer for all students specifically regarding the issues of bullying and cyberbullying. BISD Policy O The Brownsville Independent School District prohibits the bullying of a student. It also prohibits retaliation against any person, including a victim, a witness or another person, who in good faith provides information concerning an incident of bullying. What is Bullying? O Bullying occurs when a student or a group of students engages in written or verbal expression, expression through electronic means, or physical conduct that: O Will have the effect of physically harming a student, damaging a student’s property, or placing a student in reasonable fear of harm to the student’s person or of damage to the student’s property; or O Is sufficiently severe, persistent, or pervasive that the action or threat creates an intimidating, threatening, or abusive educational environment for a student. Bullying O Bullying is a problem that creates a climate of fear, that affects the whole school, and in some cases, the entire community. O When we fail to recognize and stop bullying behavior as it occurs, we actually promote violence. O The effects of bullying can be serious and even fatal. O According to a report by the U.S. Secret Service, bullying played a significant role in many school shootings. Imbalance of Power O It is considered bullying if the conduct exploits an imbalance of power between the student perpetrator and the student victim. Different Types of Bullying O Physical Bullying: O Any physical contact that would hurt or injure a person like hitting, kicking, or punching. O 30.5% of all bullying in schools is physical. O Verbal Bullying: O Name-calling, making offensive remarks, or joking about a person’s religion, gender, ethnicity, socioeconomic status, or the way they look. O 46.5% of all bullying in schools is the verbal type. O Indirect Bullying: O Spreading rumors or stories about someone, telling others about something that was told to you in private, and excluding others from groups. O 18.5% of all bullying in schools is indirect. Other Types of Bullying O Social Alienation O Bully excludes someone from a group on purpose. O Intimidation O Bully threatens someone else and frightens that person enough to make him or her do what the bully wants. O Cyberbullying O Sending messages, pictures, or information using electronic media, computers, or cell phones. O In 2003, only 4% of cyberbullying was reported; however the growth of this type of bullying is going up fast because of the spread of technology around the world. Examples of Bullying O Bullying of a student may include: O hazing O threats O taunting O teasing O confinement O assault O demands for money O destruction or theft of property O name calling O rumor spreading Effects of Student Harassment and Bullying O Lowered academic achievement and aspirations O Increased anxiety O Loss of self-esteem and confidence O Depression and post-traumatic stress O General deterioration in physical health O Self-harm and suicidal thinking O Feelings of alienation in the school environment, such as fear of other children O Absenteeism from school IMPORTANT POINTS: O Bullying is always wrong and it is a sign of a larger problem. O Students have the right to feel safe at school. O Students have the right and are encouraged to report any type of bullying O Students have the right to be treated with respect, regardless of race, religion, appearance or social beliefs. What to do O Students who bully, victims of bullying, and bystanders can be referred to counselors and administrators who deal with these groups accordingly. O BISD Crisis Intervention Flow Chart for Bullying will then be followed. Forms to Document Bullying O Bullying Investigative Report O Findings of Bullying Investigation O Parental Notice of Bullying(Victim, Perpetrator or Witness) O School Safety Transfer Preventing Bullying O Increase the awareness of everyone at school O O O O O toward bullying problems. Assess the scope of the problem. Identify both the students that are bullying and the students that are being bullied. Intervene in a timely manner with clear and consistent consequences Encourage by-standers to intervene appropriately to help stop the bullying. Reward pro-social behavior of all students. Teacher Strategies O Have assigned seating (and change seating plan if you O O O O O O see a problem arise). Be consistent. Take every student’s complaint seriously. Have meetings with the counselor and/or administrator to discuss bullying issues. Get parents involved. Be approachable. Create an open and safe environment Setting up a Bully-free Classroom O Talk to your students about bullying. O Make anti-bullying part of one of your lessons. O Give the students a list of anti-bullying rules that you O O O O O can also hang somewhere in the classroom. Have the students sign an anti-bullying class pledge on a banner and hang in the classroom. Do activities that promote class unity. Have an anonymous “notes-to-the-teacher” box. Do not allow students to pick their own groups. Keep your eyes and ears open at all time!! Counseling Services O Counseling services for victims, witnesses and bullies will be provided after an investigation has been conducted and verification of an incident has been confirmed. REMEMBER: O Bullying will not be tolerated in BISD and protective measures are in place to ensure the safety of all BISD students.
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