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Tuesday July 23rd, 2024
Sandy Creek Central School District

Sandy Creek Central School District

Dignity for all Students Act (DASA)

This page will answer questions commonly asked by students and parents.

What is bullying?
What are the different types of bullying?
Are there differences in the bullying experiences of girls and boys?
What are the warning signs of bullying?
What can I do if I am being bullied?
What do I do if my child is bullied?
What can I do if I witness a bullying incident?

What is bullying?
There is no agreed definition of bullying. It can take many forms - physical, verbal or social (for example deliberately keeping someone out of a group). All forms have something in common - they cause distress, at times extreme. There are numerous definitions of bullying written for various purposes and emphasizing different aspects.
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What are the different types of bullying?
It is impossible to produce a comprehensive agreed list of all types of bullying. New forms of bullying (for example abusive text messages) may develop because of new technology. In other cases there may be no agreement about whether or not a particular type of behavior (for example racism or homophobic harassment) is a type of bullying or a completely separate category of behavior.
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Are there differences in the bullying experiences of girls and boys?
Many studies have found that there are differences in the bullying experiences of boys and girls. Most of the studies covered here have found that it is more common for boys to be involved in physical bullying. Girls on the other hand are more likely than boys to be involved in psychological bullying (for example ignoring someone or deliberately keeping someone out of a group). However, for both boys and girls, the most common type of bullying is verbal.
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What are the warning signs of bullying?
There are many warning signs that could indicate that a student is involved in bullying, either by bullying others or by being bullied. However, these warning signs may indicate other issues or problems, as well. Below is a list of common signs:

Being Bullied:

- Reluctant to go to school or certain places.
- Silent about what is happening at school.
- Frequent lost or damaged possessions.
- Academic problems.
- Difficulty concentrating.
- Low self-esteem.
- Social isolation.
- Quiet, depressed, irritable, or anxious.

Bullying Others:

- Gets into physical or verbal fights with others.
- Enjoys putting others down.
- Has extra money or new belongings that cannot be explained.
- Disrespects authority and disregards rules.
- Has an attitude of superiority.
- Quick to blame others.
- Needs to have power or control over others.
- Enjoys violence.
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What can I do if I am being bullied?
Bullying is wrong and it is not your fault. Everyone deserves to feel safe at school. Follow these steps if you are in a bullying situation:

1) Speak up against bullying. Be firm and clear when you speak. Say something like “stop it”.
2) Walk away. Act like you do not care, even if you really do.
3) Tell an adult you trust. Report it to your parent, teacher, counselor, or School Resource Officer.
4) Stick together. The buddy system works. Staying with a group or friend will allow someone else to help you speak up or run to get help.
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What do I do if my child is bullied?
When your child is being bullied, it is hard to concentrate on anything else. All you want to do is make it stop. Follow the steps below to be the best possible advocate for your child in a bullying situation:

1) Stay calm. If you get upset, your child may think you are upset with him instead of at the situation. A knee-jerk reaction to something your child has shared with you may close off the open line of communication.
2) Empathize with your child. It’s not their fault. No one deserves to be bullied. Tell them you are glad they had the courage to tell you.
3) Ask open-ended questions. This will get your child to open up more about bullying and the severity of the problem. Continue to ask open-ended questions in the future to know if it is a reoccurring issue.
4) Encourage your child to make new friends. Help them make new friends. Help get them involved in activities to make new friends.
5) Share your own experiences. Sharing your own experiences with a bully will help them understand that they are not alone.
6) Brainstorm ways to solve the problem nonviolently. Encouraging retaliation may get your child hurt or suspended.
7) Contact school officials to report any incidences. Document everything and stick to the facts. Nothing good can come from a heated argument. In fact, it may damage all open lines of communication with the district. Overreacting may have the opposite effect you intended to have and the school may not take your future complaints seriously.
8) Help be a part of the solution. Get involved in your child’s school. Volunteer to watch “hot spots” at school, shadow in the classroom, join the PTA, rally together for an Anti-Bullying event, and sit in on the Safe School Committee.
9) Commit to making bullying stop. Work with your child and the school to provide a safe learning environment.
10)Build resiliency in your child! This may not be the only time they come in contact with a bully. We need to do everything we can to help improve coping skills so that they can better handle these hardships in the future.
11)Teach your child how to report bullying incidents to adults in an effective way. Adults are less likely to discount a child’s report as “tattling” if the report includes what is being done to him that makes him fearful or uncomfortable, who is doing it, what he has done to try to resolve the problem or to get the bully to quit, if there were any witness to the incident, and a clear explanation of what he needs or wants from the adult to stop the bullying.
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What can I do if I witness a bullying incident?
If you witness a bullying incident, follow the steps below to appropriate intervene and address the incident:

- Intervene immediately.
- Identify that the incident was bullying.*
- Request more information separately with the students involved.
- Tell the students you are aware of their behavior.
- Make it a teachable experience.
- Document the incident.
- Maintain records.
- Inform the parents and appropriate staff for further investigation.

*To avoid escalating the tension, you may wait until later to sort out the facts.
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Contact Information
Steven Newcombe
HS/MS Principal
(315)-387-3445 ext. 1910