VMA Bullying or Harassment Policy
Conduct that constitutes bullying or harassment, as defined below, is prohibited.
Bullying is the mistreatment of an individual or group characterized by a willful intent to cause harm and a perceived advantage in power. These acts can be socially, emotionally, or physically damaging in nature, to include, but not limited to: teasing, name calling, rumor spreading, exclusion, intimidation, threats, damaging personal property, stealing, public or private humiliation, stalking, pushing, shoving, or other physical attacks, and sexual, religious, or racial/ethnic harassment.
Harassment involves any threatening, insulting, or dehumanizing act or gesture which places an individual in reasonable fear of harm to his or her person or damage to his or her property; has the effect of substantially interfering with an individual’s educational performance, opportunities, or benefits; or has the effect of substantially disrupting the orderly operation of a school or activity.
Both bullying and harassment are prohibited at school, during school -related activities (whether on or off campus), on the school bus, at school bus stops, and through the use of computers or other electronic devices. Bullying and harassment are also prohibited through the use of off-campus Internet posting, phone calls, or text messaging if such behavior disrupts the orderly environment of any district school or activity.
Consequences and appropriate remedial action for students who engage in bullying or harassment may range from positive behavioral interventions up to and including suspension, reassignment to an alternative program, and expulsion. More severe or persistent infractions will result in more intensive interventions and administrative actions. Additionally, the appropriate school administrator or designee will report to the victim’s parents any incident of bullying or harassment once an investigation of an incident has been initiated. Bullying should be reported to the appropriate school administrator or the incident may be reported anonymously through the School District of Manatee County’s website.
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