Anti-Bullying Policy

Anti-Bullying Policy

An atmosphere of mutual respect between teachers, students, and all participants in the school environment is required for learning to take place. Children who attend school have a right to feel secure with their teachers and fellow students. Our commitment is to a safe and caring environment that promotes personal growth and positive self-esteem. Federation’s Alliance for Jewish Education’s Anti-Bullying Policy incorporates all appropriate Local, State, and Federal laws governing student behavior in public schools. Therefore, as we affirm our belief that we are all created B’tzelem Elokim, in the image of God, we join as a community in a NO TOLERANCE POLICY FOR BULLYING OR HARRASSMENT IN ANY FORM.

Definition

“At School” means in the classroom, elsewhere on or immediately adjacent to school premises, on a school bus or other school-related vehicles, at an official school bus stop, on a pupil’s way to or from school, or at a school sponsored activity or event whether or not it is held on school premises. “At school” includes conduct using a telecommunications access device or telecommunications service provider that occurs off school premises, or if the telecommunications access device or the telecommunications service provider is owned by or under the control of the school.

“Bullying” means conduct, including, but not limited to, conduct in (a) person or using a telecommunications access device, that meets all of the following.

  • Is directed at one or more pupils
  • Substantially interferes with educational opportunities, benefits or programs of one or more pupils.
  • Adversely affects the ability of a pupil to participate in or benefit from the school’s educational programs or activities by placing the pupil in reasonable fear of physical harm or by causing emotional distress.
  • Is based on a pupil’s actual or perceived religion, race, color, national origin, age, sex, sexual orientation, disability, height, weight, gender identity, socioeconomic status, or any other distinguishing characteristic, or is based on association with another person who has or is perceived to have any of these characteristics.

“Harassment” means conduct, including to but not limited to, conduct in person or using a telecommunications device that meets all of the following:

  • Is directed at one or more pupils
  • Substantially interferes with educational opportunities, benefits or programs of one or more pupils.
  • Adversely affects the ability of a pupil to participate in or benefit from the school’s educational programs or activities because the conduct as reasonably perceived by the pupil is so severe, persuasive, and objectively offensive as to have this effect.
  • Is based on a pupil’s actual or perceived religion, race, color, national origin, age, sex, sexual orientation, disability, height, weight, gender identity, socioeconomic status, or any other distinguishing characteristic, or is based on association with another person who has or is perceived to have any of these characteristics.

“Harassment, Intimidation and Bullying” also means any gesture or written, verbal, or physical act that a reasonable person under the circumstances should know will have the effect of harming a pupil or damaging his or her property or placing a pupil in reasonable fear of harm to his or her person or damage to his or her property, or that has the effect of insulting or demeaning any pupil or group of pupils in such a way as to disrupt or interfere with the school’s educational mission or the education of any pupil.

Harassment, intimidation, or bullying includes, but is not limited to, a gesture or written, verbal or physical act described below that is reasonably perceived as being motivated by a pupil’s religion, race, color, national origin, age, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, disability, height, weight or socioeconomic status, or by any other distinguishing characteristic.

Examples of Bullying and Harassment may include:

  • Calling names, teasing, spreading rumors about another or their families
  • Put downs, belittling others’ skills, abilities, or achievements
  • Offensive notes or graffiti about others
  • Degrading comments or gestures about another’s culture, customs, religious or social –economic background
  • Excluding others from a group
  • Ridiculing another’s appearance
  • Forcing others to act against their will
  • Hitting, pushing, spitting on others
  • Stealing, hiding, damaging or destroying another’s property
  • Use of technology (instant messages, inappropriate photographs, emails) to do any of the above
  • Any other aggressive act verbal, or physical that would make another feel unsafe, fearful, threatened, angry, scared, angry, or unfairly treated

Consequences

Bullying, harassment, and/or intimidating is prohibited.

The range of ways in which a school will respond once an incident of harassment or bullying is identified shall be commensurate with the severity of the incident and with the offender’s record of behavior. The range of responses shall include recording criminal activity to appropriate law enforcement officers. If action is taken against the pupil in response to an incident, school officials shall include a description of the incident and of the action taken in the pupil’s permanent disciplinary record.

Students and parents shall feel unrestrained to report violations of the bullying policy to administrators/teachers. Retaliation against such reporting person shall be prohibited and shall result in expulsion of retaliating student. Should any person knowingly falsely accuse another of violating the bullying policy, that person shall be expelled.

Less Severe or Initial Offenses

  • Private discussion between student and teacher
  • Create a “safe room” for time out
  • Work with school social worker
  • Administrator and teacher-parents/guardian conference
  • Temporary removal from the classroom
  • Referrals to various support staff or community resources
  • Daily/weekly progress reports
  • Behavioral contracts
  • Change in student’s class schedule or classroom
  • More Severe or Repeated Offenses
  • Before and/or after-school detention
  • Probation – monitored by administration
  • In school suspension
  • Out of school suspension
  • Expulsion
  • Legal Action
  • Professional evaluation

Conclusion

A participant has the right to learn and to participate fully, be safe, and to be respected and treated with kindness.

The Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Detroit’s Opening the Doors Special Education Partnership Program professional staff and the Alliance Special Needs Committee acknowledges the following organizations that helped us create this policy:  The Michigan State Board of Education; local public schools (Birmingham, Farmington Hills, Bloomfield Hills); and individual Jewish schools (Yeshiva Beth Yehuda, Hillel Day School, Temple Beth El).

 

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