6215 Bullying And Harassment (Staff)


I. General Statement of Policy

It shall be the policy of the Grand Island Public Schools to prohibit any form of bullying, including harassment or violence, on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, ethnicity, age, sex or gender, sexual orientation, disability, or marital status, in all staff employment situations, academic offerings, and extra-curricular activities, including school-sponsored events away from school. Conduct which has the effect of creating, for a reasonable person, an intimidating, hostile, or offensive educational or work environment will not be tolerated. Any act of bullying or harassment by either staff or students will result in disciplinary action.

It shall also be a violation of district policy for any teacher, administrator, or other school personnel of this district to tolerate bullying or harassment because of race, color, religion, national origin, ethnicity, age, sex or gender, sexual orientation, disability, or marital status, as defined by this policy, by a student, teacher, administrator, other school personnel, or by any third parties who are participating in, observing, or otherwise engaged in activities, including sporting events and other extracurricular activities, under the auspices of the school district.

For the purposes of this policy school personnel shall include Board members, employees, students, agents, volunteers, contractors, or any other persons subject to the supervision and control of the district.

The school district will act to promptly investigate all complaints, either formal or informal, verbal or written, of bullying or harassment; to promptly take action to protect individuals from further bullying or harassment; and, if it determines that bullying or harassment occurred, to promptly and appropriately discipline any student, teacher, administrator or other school personnel who is found to have violated this policy and/or to take other appropriate action reasonably calculated to end the activity.

II. Definitions and Examples

Bullying

For the purposes of this policy, bullying consists of any ongoing pattern of physical, verbal, or electronic (“cyber-bulling”) abuse. Bullying may also include harassment on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, ethnicity, age, sex or gender, sexual orientation, disability, or marital status.

Sexual Harassment

Sexual harassment consists of unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, sexually-motivated physical conduct or other verbal or physical conduct or communication of a sexual nature when:

•     submission to the conduct or communication is made a term or condition, either explicitly or implicitly, of obtaining or retaining employment or of obtaining an education; or

•     submission to or rejection of that conduct or communication by an individual is used as a factor in decisions affecting that individual's employment or education;

•     that conduct or communication has the purpose or effect of substantially or unreasonably interfering with an individual's employment or education or creating an intimidating, hostile or offensive employment or educational environment.

Sexual Orientation

For the purposes of this policy, sexual harassment on the basis of sexual orientation is defined in the following terms:

  • Gender-based discrimination is a form of sex discrimination, and refers to differential treatment or harassment of a student based on the student’s sex, including gender identity, gender expression, and nonconformity with gender stereotypes, that results in the denial or limitation of education services, benefits, or opportunities. Conduct may constitute gender-based discrimination regardless of the actual or perceived sex, gender identity, or sexual orientation of the persons experiencing or engaging in the conduct.

Examples of conduct, which may constitute sexual harassment, include:

• stalking;

• sexual advances;

• touching, patting, grabbing or pinching another person's intimate parts, whether that person is of the same sex or the opposite sex;

• coercing, forcing or attempting to coerce or force the touching of anyone's intimate parts;

• coercing, forcing or attempting to coerce or force sexual intercourse or a sexual act on another;

•  graffiti, written material, or graphics of a sexual nature;

• sexual gestures;

• sexual or dirty jokes;

• touching oneself sexually or talking about one's sexual activity in front of others;

• spreading rumors about or rating other students as to sexual activity or performance;

• unwelcome, sexually-motivated or inappropriate patting, pinching or physical contact; or

• other unwelcome sexual behavior or words, including demands for sexual favors, when accompanied by implied or overt threats concerning an individual's educational status or implied or overt promises of preferential treatment.

This prohibition does not preclude legitimate, non-sexual physical conduct such as the use of necessary restraints to avoid physical harm to persons or property or conduct such as a teacher's consoling hug of a young student or one student's demonstration of a sports move requiring contact with another student.

Disability

For purposes of this policy, harassment, because of the disability, consists of verbal or physical conduct relating to an individual's physical or mental impairment when:

•     the harassing conduct is so severe, persistent or pervasive that it affects an individual's ability to participate in or benefit from an educational program or activity or creates an intimidating, threatening or abusive environment;

•     the harassing conduct has the purpose or effect of substantially or unreasonably interfering with an individual's work or academic performance; or

•     the harassing conduct otherwise adversely affects an individual's learning opportunities.

Examples of conduct which may constitute harassment because of disability include:

•     graffiti containing offensive language, which is derogatory to others because of their physical or mental disability;

•     threatening or intimidating conduct directed at another because of the other's physical or mental disability;

•     jokes, rumors or name calling based upon an individual's physical or mental disability;

•     slurs, negative stereotypes, and hostile acts, which are based upon another's physical or mental disability;

•     graphic material containing comments or stereotypes, which is posted or circulated, and which is aimed at degrading individuals or members of protected classes;

•     a physical act of aggression or assault upon another because of, or in a manner reasonably related to, an individual's physical or mental disability; or

•     other kinds of aggressive conduct such as theft or damage to property, which is motivated by an individual's physical or mental disability.

Unlawful Harassment as a form of Discrimination in Programs or Activities that receive Federal Financial Assistance

Harassment based on an individual’s: race, color, or national origin (Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964); disability in all programs or activities (Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973); sex (Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972); age (Age Discrimination Act of 1975); and/or discrimination on the basis of disability by public entities (Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990) that consists of physical or verbal conduct relating to any one of these protected categories of individuals and:

  • creates an intimidating, hostile, or offensive working or educational environment; or
  • substantially or unreasonably interferes with an individual’s work or education; or
  • otherwise is sufficiently serious to limit an individual’s employment opportunities or to limit a student’s ability to participate in or benefit from the education program.

Examples of conduct that may constitute such unlawful harassment include:

  • graffiti containing racially offensive language;
  • name calling jokes or rumors based on an individual’s race, color, national origin, age, sex, or disability;
  • physical acts of aggression against a person or his property because of that person’s race, color, national origin, age, sex, or disability;
  • Hostile acts that are based on an individual’s race, color, national origin, age, sex, or disability and/or;
  • written or graphic material which is posted electronically or circulated and which intimidates or threatens individuals based on their race, color, national origin, age, sex, or disability.

Because of the potential misuse of electronic media, photo, or video material in violation of this policy, the use of any electronic media, photographic, or video equipment without expressed administrative consent is prohibited.

On or before September 1, 2009, each school will have in place a program or information regarding bullying/harassment prevention and education.

 

References:      Title IX, Education Amendments of 1972

                        Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, as amended

                        Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1975

                        Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973

                        Title II, Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990

                        Civil Rights Act of 1991

                        Ne. Rev. Stat. 79-267 (2010)

 

Policy Adopted 4-10-08

Policy Revised  5-14-09

Policy Revised  10.13.2011

Policy Revised  01.14.2016

 

Refer to 1310 for 1310.1 Administrative Procedures and the1310.2 Complaint Form