Bullying Reporting and Resources
Bullying is one of many challenges students may face during their time in school. The Alhambra Unified School District recognizes the importance of developing the whole child and giving our students the tools – self-awareness, self-management, social awareness, relationship skills, responsible decision-making - to make good choices in regards to how they interact with one another and to be resilient to the impact of bullying.
AUSD has been working with all of its school campuses to build strong programs of Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports (PBIS). One of the features of PBIS is for schools to establish expected school wide positive behaviors that can be found on your school’s PBIS matrix. Please become familiar with your school’s matrix for positive behavior expectations and discuss the expectations with your child.
We also encourage everyone on AUSD campus to engage in intentional acts of kindness. Kindness improves our quality of life on the campus as well as in the community. It brings people together. Doing good for others feels good. Showing kindness to others is just as rewarding as receiving it from someone else.
Where and When Bullying Happens
Bullying can occur during or after school hours. While most reported bullying happens in the school building, a significant percentage also happens in places like on the playground or the bus. It can also happen travelling to or from school, in the youth’s neighborhood, or on social media. This includes Cyber-bullying, defined as the intentional and repeated mistreatment of others through the use of technology, such as computers, cell phones and other electronic devices and may include demeaning or hateful text messages or emails; rumors sent by email or posted on social networking sites; embarrassing pictures, videos, website, or fake profiles posted online
California Governor Jerry Brown signed into law three bills (AB 9, AB 1156 and AB 620) aimed at addressing bullying in schools. In so doing, Governor Brown affirmed direction from the state and federal Departments of Education and the Office for Civil Rights that bullying in schools is unacceptable and school district personnel must now take action not only to stop it, but also make sure that it does not recur. “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” (page 1).
“Bullying is comprised of direct behaviors such as teasing, taunting, threatening, hitting, and stealing that are initiated by one or more students against a target, as well as indirect behaviors such as spreading rumors and acting in other ways to cause a student to be socially isolated through intentional exclusion, with all such behaviors, direct or indirect, amounting to physical or psychological intimidation occurring repeatedly over time to create an ongoing pattern of harassment and abuse”
Bullying -- What It Is and Is Not
Restorative practices is an emerging social science that studies how to strengthen relationships between individuals as well as social connections within communities. It is a process that asks students to reflect on their actions and the impact of their actions on others. In some cases it also provides individuals to work through their differences and put in place a plan that restores and builds relationships. AUSD has begun the process of training all school site administrators, counselors, and school psychologists in Restorative Practices. Please see the following link for a brief overview on restorative practices.
If Bullying is Experienced/Observed
BP5145.3 Nondiscrimination/Harassment “Prohibited discrimination, harassment, intimidation, or bullying includes physical, verbal, nonverbal, or written conduct based on one of the categories listed above that is so severe and pervasive that it affects a student's ability to participate in or benefit from an educational program or activity; creates an intimidating, threatening, hostile, or offensive educational environment; has the effect of substantially or unreasonably interfering with a student's academic performance; or otherwise adversely affects a student's educational opportunities.”
“The Board also prohibits any form of retaliation against any student who files a complaint or report regarding an incident of discrimination, harassment, intimidation, or bullying.”
If you witnesses or are the victim of bullying, harassment, or intimidation, you need to immediately report it to the principal or any staff member on campus. Any school employee who observes an incident of discrimination, harassment, intimidation, or bullying or to whom such an incident is reported shall report the incident to the principal, whether or not the victim files a complaint.
For additional information on bullying please refer to the following Bullying Module from the California Department of Education.