CYBER BULLYING POLICY
Bullying is when someone, or a group of people, upset or create a risk to another person’s health and safety – either psychologically or physically – or their property, reputation or social acceptance on more than one occasion. Bullies deliberately set out to intimidate, exclude, threaten and/or hurt others repeatedly. Bullying is a clear form of harassment. People who use the internet, email, intranets, phones or similar technologies to bully others are cyber bullies.
• Bullying in any form is unacceptable. Bullying that is carried out through an internet service, such as email, internet, chat room, discussion group or instant messaging or through mobile phone technologies such as short messaging service (SMS) is cyber bullying. Cyber bullying will not be tolerated at nay level, and consequences exist for students who choose to bully others.
• To reinforce within the school community what bullying is (including cyber bullying ), and the fact that it is unacceptable.
• Everyone within the school community to be alert to signs and evidence of cyber bullying and to have a responsibility to report it to staff whether as observer or victim.
• To ensure that all reported incidents of cyber bullying are investigated appropriately and that support is given to both victims and perpetrators.
• To seek parental and peer-group support and co-operation at all time.
• Parents, teachers, students and the community will be aware of the school’s position on the cyber bullying. Teacher will be regularly reminded of their duty of care regarding protection of students from all forms of bullying.
• The school will adopt a four-phase approach to bullying.
A. Primary Prevention:
• Professional development for staff relating to all forms of bullying including cyber bullying. Harassment and proven counter measures.
• Educate the school community about the seriousness of cyber bullying, its impact on those being bullied and how this behaviour is unacceptable.
• Community awareness and input relating to bullying (including cyber-bullying), its characteristics and the schools’ programs and response.
• Provide programs that promote resilience, life and social skill, assertiveness, conflict resolution and problem solving.
• A students bullying survey and yard duty will be administered and acted upon twice annually.
• Each classroom teacher to clarify with students at the start of each year the school policy on bullying, including cyber-bullying.
• All students to be provided with individual and confidential computer and network log ins and passwords. Processes to be put in place to ensure tracking of student activity on the school’s computer equipment and network. Firewalls to be installed to eliminate outside traffic into the school’s network and intranet.
• The use of mobile phones by students will be limited with consequences to implement for any students who use mobile phones inappropriately.
• The curriculum to include anti-bullying messages and strategies eg: ‘The Friendly Schools’ and ‘No Blame Approach to Bullying’ programs.
• Student Representative Council, peer support delegates, staff and students to promote the philosophy of ‘No Put Downs’
• A vigilant and accountable yard duty roster for teachers will be put in place.
• Electives and structured activities available to students at recess and lunch breaks
B. Early Intervention:
• Encourage children and staff to report bullying incidents involving themselves or others.
• Classroom teachers and principal on a regular basis reminding students and staff to report incidents of bullying.
• Regular monitoring of student traffic on school’s computer networks to identify potential problems.
• Parents encouraged to contact school if they become aware of a problem.
• Pacific Room – a designated safe and quiet place for children to access at recess and lunch times.
• Public recognition and reward for positive behaviour and resolution of problems
• Once identified each bully, victim and witnesses will be spoken with, and all incidents or allegations of bullying will be fully investigated and documented.
• Parents to be contacted.
• Students and staff identified by others as bullied will be informed of allegations
• Both bullies and victims will be offered counselling and support.
• Removal of cyber bullies from access to the school’s network and computers for a period of time. Loss of privilege to bring a mobile phone to school for student’s who bully via SMS or similar telephone functions.
• If student bullying persists parents will be contacted and consequences implemented consistent with the school’s Student Code of Conduct.
D. Post Violation:
• Consequences for students will be individually based and may involve:-
* exclusion from class.
* exclusion from yard.
* school suspension.
* withdrawal of privileges.
* ongoing counselling from appropriate agency for both victim
• Reinforcement of positive behaviours.
• Support Structures
• Ongoing monitoring of identified bullies.
• Rewards of positive behaviour
This policy will be reviewed with whole staff, student, parent and community input as part of the school’s three-year review cycle.