Cyber Bullying

Cyber Bullying

Cyber Bullying Policy

Bullying and disrespect for others is not a behavior that will be tolerated. Because the use of the Internet and cyber communications is a significant part of the schooling tools at RAE, the opportunity for Cyber Bullying is present. This policy is designed to make it very clear that such behavior will not be tolerated; further, the RAE team has a duty to proactively search out and eliminate elements that may lead to such behavior.

Prohibited Behaviors for a Royal Academy Student

  • Bullying
  • Cyber Bullying
  • Harassment and Sexual Harassment
  • Retaliation against those reporting such defined behaviors
  • Knowing and false accusations of bullying behavior

Any person who engages in any of these prohibited behaviors (and others deemed inappropriate by the teacher) shall be subject to consequences, which may trigger dismissal from the school.

Definition of Bullying and Cyber-Bullying

A. “Bullying” includes, but is not limited to, a written, oral or electronic expression or a physical act or gesture or any combination thereof directed at a student or students that:

  1. Has, or a reasonable person would expect it to have, the effect of:
    1. Physically harming a student or damaging a student’s property or
    2. Placing a student in reasonable fear of physical harm or damage to the student’s property
  2. Interferes with the rights of a student by:
    1. Creating an intimidating or hostile educational environment for the student; or
    2. Interfering with the student’s academic performance or ability to participate in or benefit from the services, activities or privileges provided by a school; or
  3. Is based on a student’s actual or perceived race, color, national origin, ancestry, religion, physical or mental disability, gender, sexual orientation, or any other distinguishing characteristic, or is based on a student’s association with a person with one or more of these actual or perceived characteristics, and that has the effect described in subparagraph (1) or (2) above.

Examples of conduct that may constitute bullying include, but are not limited to:

  • Repeated or pervasive taunting, name-calling, belittling, mocking, put-downs, or demeaning humor
  • Behavior that is intended to harm someone by damaging or manipulating his or her relationships with others, including but not limited to gossip, spreading rumors, and social exclusion
  • Non-verbal threats and/or intimidation such as use of aggressive, menacing, or disrespectful gestures
  • Threats of harm to a student, to his/her possessions, or to other individuals, whether transmitted verbally or in writing
  • Blackmail, extortion, demands for protection money, or involuntary loans or donations
  • Blocking access to school property or facilities
  • Stealing or hiding books, backpacks, or other possessions
  • Stalking
  • Physical contact or injury to another person or his/her property

B. “Cyber Bullying” means bullying through the use of technology or any electronic communication, including, but not limited to, a transfer of signs, signals, writing, images, sounds, data or intelligence of any nature transmitted by the use of any electronic device, including, but not limited to, a computer, telephone, cellular telephone, text messaging device and personal digital assistant.

Examples of conduct that may constitute Cyber Bullying include, but are not limited to:

  • Posting slurs or rumors or displaying any defamatory, inaccurate, disparaging, violent, abusive, profane, or sexually oriented material about a student on a website or other online application
  • Posting misleading or fake photographs or digital video footage of a student on websites or creating fake websites or social networking profiles in the guise of posing as the target
  • Impersonating or representing another student through use of that other student’s electronic device or account to send e-mail, text messages, instant messages (IM), or phone calls
  • Sending e-mail, text messages, IM, or leaving voice mail messages that are mean or threatening, or so numerous as to bombard the target’s e-mail account, IM account, or cell phone
  • Using a camera phone or digital video camera to take and/or send embarrassing or “sexting” photographs of other students.

C. “Retaliation” means an act or gesture against a student for asserting or alleging an act of bullying. “Retaliation” also includes reporting an act of bullying when it is not made in good faith.

Application of Policy

  1. This policy applies to any student, school employee, independent contractor, visitor or volunteers who engage in conduct that constitutes bullying or retaliation, all of whom have the responsibility to comply with this policy.
  2. This policy applies to bullying that:
    • Takes place in relation to any school related activity or location.
    • Takes place while students are being transported to or from schools or school-sponsored events by parents, friends or older siblings.
    • Takes place through the use of technology.
  3. Reporting:
    • Bullying or suspected bullying is reportable in person or in writing (including anonymously) to RAE personnel.
  4. RAE staff and directors of all activities are required to report incidents of bullying to the Executive Director.
  5. Students who have been bullied or are aware of incidents of bullying are strongly encouraged to report this behavior to a staff member or the Executive Director.
  6. Parents and other adults who are aware of incidents of bullying are strongly encouraged to report this behavior to a staff member or Executive Director.
  7. Acts of reprisal or retaliation against any person who reports an incident of bullying are prohibited. Any student who is determined to have falsely accused another of bullying shall be subject to disciplinary consequences.

Responding

The Executive Director will:

  1. Promptly investigate and respond to allegations of bullying behavior.
  2. Keep written documentation of all allegations of bullying behavior and outcomes of the investigations.
  3. Apply disciplinary actions, which may include dismissal of the offender.
  4. Communicate to the parent of a student who has been bullied the measures being taken to ensure the safety of the student who has been bullied and to prevent further acts of bullying.
  5. Communicate with a local or state law enforcement agency if RAE’s Executive Director believes that the pursuit of criminal charges or a civil action under the Civil Rights Act may be appropriate.
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