Bullying & Harassment
Bullying and harassment are an regrettable reality in our schools today. These behaviors present challenges for everyone: school faculty and staff, students, parents/guardians, and the communities we live in. Sometimes behaviors can take place in other places (such as cyberbullying) and overflow on to school grounds. Regardless of where the behavior started or who started the conflict, it is behavior that no one wants to have as a “norm” in our schools. Thus, addressing incidents of bullying and harassment proactively and/or reactively, immediately and effectively, is crucial in transforming these kinds of behaviors into more positive behaviors in our schools.
Education is key:
- Teaching students about the differences between bullying and harassment, teasing and taunting, flirting and hurting, or debating and denigrating.
- Empowering students to stand up to bullying and harassment, either as a target or as a bystander.
- Providing school faculty and staff with information and skills with which to address bullying and harassment, whether intervening in a “teachable moment,” or investigating a complaint of harassment.
- Engaging parents/guardians in conversation and providing information about bullying and harassment as well as about school policies and procedures related to bullying and harassment.
All of these strategies, in conjunction with other strategies to create safe schools, are the most effective ways to create positive changes in our schools. Included on this website is information for students, parents/guardians, and school faculty and staff.
To learn more about bullying, click here.
(adapted from VT Human Rights Commission)