BULLYING AND HARASSMENT PREVENTION
The Rialto Unified School District is committed to providing a safe working and learning environment; takes seriously bullying or any behavior that infringes on the safety or the well-being of students, employees or any other persons within the District’s jurisdiction; and will not condone retaliation in any form when bullying has been reported. District policy continues to require all schools and personnel to promote among students and staff mutual respect, tolerance, and acceptance.
The California Department of Education (CDE) has developed and made available to school districts a policy model on the prevention of bullying and on conflict resolution. These policies are developed for the purpose of incorporating them into a district wide school safety plan. The attached documents are a sample policy for Bullying Prevention & Conflict Resolution, and Student Code of Conduct for Rialto Unified School District.
Rialto Unified School District Bullying (Cyber bullying) Prevention Ed. Code 48900(a),(k),(o),(r),(s)
The Rialto Unified School District believes that all students have a right to a safe and healthy school environment. The district, schools, and community have an obligation to promote mutual respect, tolerance, and acceptance.
The Rialto Unified School District will not tolerate behavior that infringes on the safety of any student. A student shall not intimidate or harass another through words or actions. Such behavior includes: direct physical contact, such as hitting or shoving; verbal assaults, such as teasing or name-calling; and social isolation or manipulation.
The Rialto Unified School District expects students and/or staff to immediately report incidents of bullying to the principal or designee. Staff is expected to immediately intervene when they see a bullying incident occur. Each complaint of bullying should be promptly investigated. This policy applies to students on school grounds, while traveling to and from school and during a school-sponsored activity.
To ensure bullying does not occur on school campuses the Rialto Unified School District will provide staff development training in bullying prevention and cultivate acceptance and understanding in all students and staff to build each school’s capacity to maintain a safe and healthy learning environment.
Definition of Harassment and Bullying
Harassment or bullying of students or staff is an extremely serious violation of the Student Code of Conduct. It can also be a violation of criminal law. The District will not tolerate unlawful bullying and harassment on school grounds, or when traveling to and from school or a school sponsored activity, or sending insulting or threatening messages by phone, e-mail, websites, or any other electronic or written communication. The physical location or time of access of a computer-related incident cannot be raised as a defense in any disciplinary action initiated pursuant to this policy.
"Harassment" means any threatening, insulting, or dehumanizing gesture, use of data or computer software, or written, verbal or physical conduct directed against a student or employee that:
- Places a student or employee in reasonable fear of harm to his or her person or damage to his or her property
- Has the effect of substantially interfering with a student’s educational performance, opportunities, or benefits
- Has the effect of substantially disrupting the orderly operation of school
"Bullying,"means systematically and chronically inflicting physical hurt or psychological distress on one or more students or school employees. It is unwanted and repeated written, verbal, or physical behavior, including any threatening, insulting, or dehumanizing gesture, by an adult or student, that is severe or pervasive enough to create an intimidating, hostile, or offensive educational environment; cause discomfort or humiliation; is carried out repeatedly and is often characterized by an imbalance of power; or unreasonable interference with the individual’s school performance or participation; and may involve but is not limited to:
- Unwanted teasing or taunting (verbal or non-verbal)
- Social exclusion
- Sexual, religious, or racial/ethnic
- Physical violence
- Public humiliation
- Destruction of property
"Cyberbullying," sometimes referred to as internet bullying or electronic bullying, is defined as the “willful and repeated harm inflicted through the medium of electronic text”. It may involve:
- Sending mean, vulgar or threatening messages or images;
- Posting sensitive, private information about another person;
- Pretending to be someone else in order to make that person look bad; and
- Intentionally excluding someone from an online group.
Teachers should discuss this policy with their students in age-appropriate ways and should assure them that they need not endure any form of bullying. Students who bully are in violation of this policy and are subject to disciplinary action up to and including expulsion. ( Ed. Code 32261 Legislative findings, declarations, and intent; Ed. Code 48900, 48900.2, 48900.3, 48900.4, 48915(a) and 48915(c)). Each school will adopt a Student Code of Conduct to be followed by every student while on school grounds, or when traveling to and from school or a school-sponsored activity.
The Student Code of Conduct includes, but is not limited to:
- Any student who engages in bullying may be subject to disciplinary action up to and including expulsion.
- Students are expected to immediately report incidents to the principal or designee.
- Students can rely on staff to promptly investigate each complaint of bullying in a thorough and confidential manner.
- If the complainant student or the parent of the student feels that appropriate resolution of the investigation or complaint has not been reached, the student or the parent of the student should contact the principal. The school system prohibits retaliatory behavior against any complainant or any participant in the complaint process.
- Students are to resolve their disputes without resorting to violence.
- Students are encouraged to help fellow students resolve problems peaceably.
- Students can rely on staff to intervene in any dispute likely to result in violence.
- Students needing help in resolving a disagreement, or students observing conflict may contact an adult in the school office
The procedures for intervening in bullying include, but are not limited to:
- District-wide training provided for students, staff, parents, and concerned community members about bullying awareness and prevention strategies.
- All staff, students and their parents will receive a summary of this policy prohibiting bullying; at the beginning of the school year, as part of the student handbook and/or information packet, as part of new student orientation, and as part of the school system’s notification to parents.
- The school will make reasonable efforts to keep a report of bullying and the results of investigation confidential.
- Staff are expected to immediately intervene when they see a bullying incident occur.
- People witnessing or experiencing bullying are encouraged to report the incident; such reporting will not reflect on the victim or witnesses in any way.
The Rialto Unified School District believes that all students have a right to a safe and healthy school environment. Part of a healthy environment is the freedom to openly disagree. With this freedom comes the responsibility to discuss and resolve disagreements with respect for the rights and opinions of others.
To prevent conflict, each school within the Rialto Unified School District will incorporate conflict resolution education and problem solving techniques into the curriculum and campus programs. This is an important step in promoting respect and acceptance, developing new ways of communicating, understanding, and accepting differing values and cultures within the school community and helps ensure a safe and healthy learning environment.
The Rialto Unified School District will provide training to provide the knowledge, attitudes, and skill students need to choose alternatives to self-destructive, violent behavior and dissolve interpersonal and inter-group conflict. Each school will adopt a Student Code of Conduct to be followed by every student while on school grounds and when traveling to and from school or a school-sponsored activity.