Bullying is defined in Section 37.0832 of the Education Code as a single significant act or a pattern of acts by one or more students directed at another student that exploits an imbalance of power and occurs when a student or group of students engages in written or verbal expression through electronic means, or physical conduct against another student.
- Has the effect or will have the effect of physically harming a student, or damaging the student’s property; or
- Places a student in reasonable fear of physical harm to the student’s person;
- Is sufficiently severe, persistent, or pervasive enough that the action or threat creates an intimidating, threatening, or abusive educational environment for a student;
- Materially and substantially disrupts the educational process or the orderly operation of a classroom or school; or
- Infringes on the rights of the targeted student’s at school.
Bullying includes cyberbullying.
Cyberbullying is defined by Section 37.0832 of the Education Code as bullying that is done through the use of any electronic communication device, including through the use of a cellular or other type of telephone, a computer, a camera, electronic mail, instant messaging, text messaging, a social media application, an Internet website, or any other Internet-based communication tool.
The District has adopted policies and procedures to address:
- Bullying that occurs on or is delivered to school property or to the site of a school-sponsored or school-related activity on or off school property;
- Bullying that occurs on a publicly or privately-owned school bus or vehicle
being used for transportation of students to or from school or a school sponsored or school-related activity; and
- Cyberbullying that occurs off school property or outside of a school-sponsored or school-related activity if the cyberbullying interferes with a student’s educational opportunities or substantially disrupts the orderly operation of a classroom, school, or school-sponsored or school-related activity.
Bullying is prohibited by AMCS and could include hazing, threats, taunting, teasing, confinement, assault, demands for money, destruction of property, theft of valued possessions, name-calling, rumor spreading, or ostracism.
REPORTING & INVESTIGATION:
If a student believes that he or she has experienced bullying or has witnessed bullying of another student, it is important for the student or parent to notify a teacher, school counselor, principal, or another AMCS employee as soon as possible to obtain assistance and intervention.
The administration will investigate any allegations of bullying or other related misconduct. AMCS will also provide notice to the parent of the alleged targeted student and the parent of the student alleged to have engaged in bullying within three business days.
A student may anonymously report an alleged incident of bullying by clicking the button below, completing the contact form at the ‘contact us’ button on the main page of the school website, or email to the AMCS email: email@example.com. If the results of an investigation indicate that bullying has occurred, the administration will take appropriate disciplinary action and may notify law enforcement in certain circumstances. Disciplinary or other action may be taken even if the conduct did not rise to the level of bullying. Available counseling options will be provided to these individuals, as well as to any students who have been identified as witnesses to the bullying.
SAFEGUARDS & SUPPORTS:
Any retaliation against a student who reports an incident of bullying is prohibited.
Upon the recommendation of the administration, the Board, or its designee, may in response to an identified case of bullying decide to transfer a student found to have engaged in bullying to another classroom at the campus. In consultation with the student’s parent, the student may also be transferred to another school. The parent of a student who has been determined by AMCS to be a targeted student of bullying may request that his or her child be transferred to another classroom or school.
PREVENTION PROGRAMS AND POLICIES:
- Universal prevention programs: Reduce risks and strengthen skills for all youth within a defined community or school setting.
- Selective preventative interventions: Target youth who are at risk for engaging in bullying or at risk of becoming a bullying target
- Indicated preventative interventions: Tailored to meet the youth’s needs, of greater intensity, for those who are already displaying bullying behavior or are being bullied.
- Vast majority of bullying prevention research has focused on universal school-based programs
- Positive relationships with teachers, parents and peers appear to be a protective factor against bullying
- Effects of these programs appear to be modest
- Multi-component programs are most effective at reducing bullying
Recommended Program & Components:
- Use MULTI-TIERED approaches, leveraging universal, selective and indicated programs and activities.
- Make your efforts school-wide to address the social environment, culture and climate. Focus on “hot spots” and have clear anti-bullying policies
- Utilize data about incidents and prevention programs and activities to monitor progress in addressing bullying and make changes Integrate bullying prevention efforts with other existing programs and supports — few violence prevention programs were developed to specifically address bullying
- Engage families to help with making students feel comfortable about disclosing if they are being bullied;
- Integrate bullying prevention efforts with other existing programs and supports — few violence prevention programs were developed to specifically address bullying
- help build child coping skills Make your efforts school-wide to address the social environment, culture and climate. Focus on “hot spots” and have clear anti-bullying policies
PARENT & COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT:
Engaging Parents & Youth to Prevent Bullying:
School staff can do a great deal to prevent bullying and protect students, but they can’t do it alone. Parents and youth also have a role to play in preventing bullying at school.
Benefits of Parent and Youth Engagement: Research shows that school administrators, such as principals, can play a powerful role in bullying prevention. They can inspire others and maintain a climate of respect and inclusion. But a principal cannot do it alone. When parents and youth are involved in the solutions:
- Students feel safer and can focus on learning.
- Parents worry less.
- Teachers and staff can focus on their work.
- Schools can develop more responsive solutions because students are more likely to see or hear about bullying than adults.
- School climate improves because students are engaged in taking action to stop bullying.
- Parents can support schools’ messages about bullying at home. They are also more likely to recognize signs that a child has been bullied or is bullying others.
How Parents and Youth Can Contribute: Schools can set the stage for meaningful parent and youth involvement, but it doesn’t happen overnight. Parents and youth are valued and must avail of every opportunity to contribute their expertise. Some meaningful roles for parents and students are as follows:
- Students can contribute their views and experiences with bullying. They can take leadership roles in school to promote respect and inclusion, communicate about bullying prevention with their peers, and help develop rules and policies.
- Parents can contribute to a positive school climate through the parent teacher association, volunteering, and school improvement events.
- School staff can keep parents informed, make them feel welcome, and treat them as partners. Schools can consider identifying a school coordinator to support parent and youth engagement strategies. Schools can set meeting times that are convenient for parents and youth and may consider additional incentives such as providing dinner or child care.