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©2011 Office of Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley Implementation of the New Bullying Prevention Law A presentation by the Office of Massachusetts.

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Presentation on theme: "©2011 Office of Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley Implementation of the New Bullying Prevention Law A presentation by the Office of Massachusetts."— Presentation transcript:

1 ©2011 Office of Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley Implementation of the New Bullying Prevention Law A presentation by the Office of Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley Massachusetts School Library Association March 14, 2011

2 An Act Relative to Bullying in Schools Chapter 92 of the Acts of 2010 ©2011 Office of Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley

3 Bullying Prevention Commission Attorney General Martha Coakley District Attorney David Capeless Sheriff Michael Bellotti Michael Long, Esq. Chief Mary Lyons Ms. Laura Salomons Mr. Steve Clem ©2011 Office of Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley

4 Charge of the Commission “The review of the General Laws to determine if they need to be amended in order to address bullying and cyber- bullying and to investigate parental responsibility and liability for bullying and cyber-bullying.” ©2011 Office of Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley

5 The New Law Defines bullying and cyberbullying Requires schools to have a comprehensive bullying prevention plan Requires school staff to notify principal of incidents Requires notifications to parents and sometimes to law enforcement Provisions of the law may extend to off campus conduct (if it creates a hostile environment at school for the student being targeted) ©2011 Office of Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley

6 Bullying Defined Repeated conduct Physical or emotional harm or damage to victim’s property Reasonable fear of physical harm or damage to property Hostile environment at school for victim Infringes on the student’s rights Materially and substantially disrupts the education process or the orderly operation of a school ©2011 Office of Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley

7 District Prevention and Intervention Plan Statement prohibiting bullying/ cyberbullying Clear procedures for reporting bullying, including provisions for anonymous reports, handling false reports, plan to address retaliation Procedures for restoring victim’s sense of safety Procedures for notifying parent/guardian Provisions for counseling (or referrals to counseling) ©2011 Office of Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley

8 District Prevention and Intervention Plan Professional Development Parent Component Information on Plan for Students Technology Policy ©2011 Office of Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley

9 Cyber-Bullying Use of technology or any electronic communication, including anything transmitted by a wire, radio, electromagnetic, photo electronic or photo optical system, including , internet communications, instant messages, or fax ©2011 Office of Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley

10 Off-Campus Conduct Extends beyond school grounds if it: Creates a hostile environment at school for victim or Materially and substantially disrupts the education process or the orderly operation of a school ©2011 Office of Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley

11 Parents Need to Tell Their Children The Internet counts Adults can see what you post online. Think before you post online. Posing as someone else could result in criminal charges. What to do if someone bullies or harasses them online. ©2011 Office of Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley

12 Staff must notify principal Of any instance of bullying / retaliation Applies to all members of staff ©2011 Office of Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley

13 Principal Investigates Upon receipt of such a report, the school principal or a designee shall promptly conduct an investigation ©2011 Office of Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley

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15 Call home 1 recess Push Shove Harass Punch Kick Warning Behavior1st time2nd time3rd time Teasing (Name- calling, insults, etc.) Call home 3 recess Call home 1 recess Call home 3 recess Call home 5 recess Call home 3 recess Call home 5 recess I.S.S. or classes only Sample Discipline Rubric Elementary School

16 ©2011 Office of Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley

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18 Stan Davis’ “Think About It” Form What did you do? What was wrong with this behavior? Who did you hurt? How did you know you hurt them? What made you do this? What problem were you trying to solve? Next time you're feeling this way, how can you act differently without hurting someone? ©2011 Office of Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley

19 Requires Reporting to Local Law Enforcement When a crime “may have been” committed Local law enforcement has expertise Continued reliance on the existing relationships with law enforcement ©2011 Office of Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley

20 Principal must notify parents or guardians Of Victim Of Perpetrator Notify parent or guardian of action taken (consistent with state and federal law) ©2011 Office of Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley

21 Safeguards When Notifying Parents LGBT children are at disproportionately higher risk of being bullied Actual or perceived differences DESE offers guidance ©2011 Office of Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley

22 Evidence-Based Curricula Aggressors, Victims, and Bystanders Al's Pals: Kids Making Healthy Choices Bullying Prevention Program (Olweus) Bully Proofing Series Michigan Model for Comprehensive School Health Education PATHS (Promoting Alternative Thinking Strategies) Peacebuilders Steps to Respect ©2011 Office of Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley

23 Professional Development Staff-based interventions (effective response to incidents) Classroom-based interventions Empowering youth ©2011 Office of Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley

24 Additional Laws Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 Prohibits discrimination/harassment on the basis of race, color and national origin. Title IX of the Educational Amendments of 1982 Prohibits discrimination/harassment on the basis of gender. Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and Title II Americans With Disabilities Act Prohibits discrimination/harassment based on disability. ©2011 Office of Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley

25 Attorney General’s Office Bullying Prevention Information Civil Rights Division ©2011 Office of Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley

26 What’s Next? Continue to discus this today – and beyond (via the Wiki) Check out other district’s plans Share resources, solutions! Take a moment to acknowledge the impact one caring adult can have in a child’s life. ©2011 Office of Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley


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