form of bullying behavior. Furthermore, the Board believes that a healthy and positive school environment enhances and increases academic achievement and pro-social development (BP 5030). Therefore, the prevention, reduction/elimination of bullying behavior is fundamental to
Pomona's educational goals. The District, students, families, and staff have an obligation to create an environment that celebrates and respects diversity and human dignity, promotes an atmosphere that encourages students to grow in self-discipline, and admonishes bullying behavior. To this end, the District has in place policies, procedures, and practices that are designed to address, reduce, and eliminate incidents of bullying and harassment.
Reporting and Investigating
1. Students who are the target of bullying or observe the behavior should report the incident to the principal, the principal's designee, or a trusted school staff member.
Staff members, upon receiving a complaint or witnessing bullying, are required to make a report to the principal or principal's designee. Reports can be made verbally or in writing. Oral reports shall also be considered official reports. Reports may also be made anonymously. Both oral and anonymous reports should be documented and reported by the receiving administrator.
2. Upon receiving a report either directly from the target of bullying, a witness of bullying, or from a teacher or staff member, the principal/ designee (or Superintendent/designee)must initiate investigation procedures. The investigation must be prompt and diligent and occur within ten (10) school days of the reporting. All interviews of witnesses, the victim, and the accused shall be conducted separately.
3. All individuals involved must maintain the confidentiality of the proceedings as well as the names of the complainant and all others involved.
Cyberbullying is bullying that takes place over digital devices like cell phones, computers, and tablets. Cyberbullying can occur through SMS, Text, and apps, or online in social media, forums, or gaming where people can view, participate in, or share content. Cyberbullying includes sending, posting, or sharing negative, harmful, false, or mean content about someone else. It can include sharing personal or private information about someone else causing embarrassment or humiliation. Some cyberbullying crosses the line into unlawful or criminal behavior.
The most common places where cyberbullying occurs are:
- Social Media, such as Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, and Twitter
- SMS (Short Message Service) also known as Text Message sent through devices
- Instant Message (via devices, email provider services, apps, and social media messaging features)
With the prevalence of social media and digital forums, comments, photos, posts, and content shared by individuals can often be viewed by strangers as well as acquaintances. The content an individual shares online – both their personal content as well as any negative, mean, or hurtful content – creates a kind of permanent public record of their views, activities, and behavior. This public record can be thought of as an online reputation, which may be accessible to schools, employers, colleges, clubs, and others who may be researching an individual now or in the future. Cyberbullying can harm the online reputations of everyone involved – not just the person being bullied, but those doing the bullying or participating in it. Cyberbullying has unique concerns in that it can be:
Persistent – Digital devices offer an ability to immediately and continuously communicate 24 hours a day, so it can be difficult for children experiencing cyberbullying to find relief.
Permanent – Most information communicated electronically is permanent and public, if not reported and removed. A negative online reputation, including for those who bully, can impact college admissions, employment, and other areas of life.
Hard to Notice – Because teachers and parents may not overhear or see cyberbullying taking place, it is harder to recognize.
Bullying is unwanted, aggressive behavior among school aged children that involves a real or perceived power imbalance. The behavior is repeated, or has the potential to be repeated, over time.
In order to be considered bullying, the behavior must be aggressive and include:
- An Imbalance of Power: Kids who bully use their power—such as physical strength, access to embarrassing information, or popularity—to control or harm others. Power imbalances can change over time and in different situations, even if they involve the same people.
- Repetition: Bullying behaviors happen more than once or have the potential to happen more than once.
Bullying includes actions such as making threats, spreading rumors, attacking someone physically or verbally, and excluding someone from a group on purpose.
There are three types of bullying:
- Verbal bullying is saying or writing mean things. Verbal bullying includes:
- Inappropriate sexual comments
- Threatening to cause harm
- Social bullying, sometimes referred to as relational bullying, involves hurting someone’s reputation or relationships. Social bullying includes:
- Leaving someone out on purpose
- Telling other children not to be friends with someone
- Spreading rumors about someone
- Embarrassing someone in public
- Physical bullying involves hurting a person’s body or possessions. Physical bullying includes:
- Taking or breaking someone’s things
- Making mean or rude hand gesturesInformation from stopbullying.gov