The Department of Safe Schools
Bullying Awareness and Intervention
Bullying Awareness and Intervention
In 2009, the State of Florida enacted the Jeffrey Johnston Stand Up For All Students Act [IM1] [GV2], F.S.§ 1006.147 which called for districts to enact anti-bullying policies that prohibited face-to-face mistreatment, as well as cyber-bullying and cyber-stalking (the use of technology to harass and bully). In 2013, the legislation was amended so that the definition of bullying includes cyber-bullying and adds “private humiliation” as a behavior that may constitute bullying. School Board P-5.002, entitled Prohibition of Bullying and Harassment, prohibits bullying and harassment in all forms, including cyberbullying as defined in the policy, and requires that all schools promote and teach students positive ways to interact socially and be reminded of appropriate behavior throughout the school year. In 2014, the state enacted legislation that required districts to create a Teen Dating Violence and Abuse Policy. School Board Policy 5.82, allows students of all genders and sexual orientations who believe they have been victims of dating violence or abuse to request accommodations via the creation of Student Victim Safety Plans and/or School-Based Stay Away Agreements in order to create greater separation between themselves and their dating partner.
Each secondary school is required to advertise this prohibition against dating violence and abuse in any form, including physical, emotional, or sexual, post the contact name and number of an on-site person who would handle any complaints, and post the policy in public places on campus, in the school's student handbook, and in District publications such as this one.
What is Bullying?
Bullying is defined by inflicting physical or psychological distress on one or more students and may involve: teasing or social exclusion. Repetitive Bullying means systematically and chronically inflicting physical hurt or psychological distress in person-to-person encounters and/or by means of electronic communication or technological devices on one or more students or school employees. It is further defined as 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; or unreasonably interfere with the individual's school performance or participation; and may involve but is not limited to: teasing, social exclusion, threat, intimidation, stalking, physical violence, theft, sexual, religious, or racial/ethnic harassment, public humiliation, damaging or destruction of property, placing a student in reasonable fear of harm to his or her person or property, and cyber-bullying, and cyber-stalking as defined in P-5.002.
What You Should Do if Your Child is Bullied
- Focus on your child. Listen, be supportive, and gather information and the facts related to the incident.
- Stay calm and report the incident(s) to your child’s teacher, school counselor, assistant principal and/or principal. Document all incidents of mistreatment, abuse, cruelty, and/or disrespectful acts toward your child and or perpetrated by your child.
- Complete and/or encourage your child to file the Student Bullying, Harassment, and Teen Dating Violence and Abuse Report (PBCSD #2508) and attach evidence located in the school’s main office and/or complete a Bullying/Harassment Anonymous Drop-Box Report and file it in the drop boxes placed at various locations on the campus. Reporting is not tattling when the intention is to alert teacher and/or administration of any harmful acts of mistreatment toward your child or others.
- Each school has an established Bullying Anonymous Hotline Telephone Number located on posters throughout your school.
- Request that you be informed or schedule a follow-up conference to discuss findings and determine actions to monitor and support all students involved, as well as to deter continued and/or escalation of incidents.
- Seek resources to assist you in strengthening your child’s resiliency toward harm - See Parent Handouts at the Pacer Center.
Click on the images above for information about Cyberbullying and Bullying.