Harassment, intimidation, or bullying behavior by any student/school personnel in the Northwood Local School District is strictly prohibited, and such conduct may result in disciplinary action, including suspension and/or expulsion from school.
"Harassment, intimidation, or bullying", in accordance with House Bill 276, means any intentional written, verbal, graphic or physical act includingelectronically transmitted acts i.e., Internet, cell phone, personal digital assistant (PDA), or wireless hand-held device, either overt or covert, by a student or group of students toward other students/school personnel with the intent to harass, intimidate, injure, threaten, ridicule, or humiliate.
Such behaviors are prohibited on or immediately adjacent to school grounds, at any school-sponsoredactivity, on school provided transportation, or at any official school bus stop that a reasonable person under the circumstances should know will have the effect of:
A. Causing mental or physical harm to the other student/school personnel including:
placing an individual in reasonable fear of physical harm and/or damaging of students’ personal property; and,
B. Is sufficiently severe,persistent, or pervasive that it creates an intimidating, threatening, or abusive educational environment for the other student/school personnel.
Bullying is the repeated and ongoing negative action toward one or more students (Olweus, 1993). These negative actions can be direct, as in verbal or physical contact, facial or other body gestures, or indirect, as in the intentional exclusion or refusal tocomply with another person's wishes. Bullying occurs when the victim, typically someone viewed as powerless and not retaliatory, is sought out by another, who is characteristically seen as physically powerful or dominant (Rigby, 2002). Hence, bullying may be simply defined as the act of constant aggression toward another individual who lacks the same power.
Who Are the Victims of Bullying?
*International and national studies indicate that between 9% and 15% of any student population is a victim of bullying (Horowitz et al., 2004; Malecki, 2003; Nansel et al., 2001; Olweus, 1993; Rigby, 2002).
* A U.S. study of more than 15,000 sixth to tenth grade students indicated that 10.6% were victims of bullying (Nansel et al., 2001).
* Researchers have found that bullying amongadolescents at the middle school level is extensive (Malecki, 2003; Olweus, 1993; Rigby, 2002).
* Most victims are identified as physically and socially weaker than their peers (Olweus, 1993).
* Even though boys and girls are equally at risk of being bullied, several studies report that middle school boys are more often victimized (Olweus, 2003; Shakeshaft et al., 1997).
* Passivevictims exhibit reclusive and introverted mannerisms while provocative victims may appear hyperactive, lack concentration, and generally tend to irritate others. Although it may appear that the provocative victim is aggressive, this individual is typically overpowered by the bully and ultimately becomes the victim in the end (National Middle School Association (NMSA), 2001).
* Olweus (1993)reported that victims of bullying "often look at themselves as failures and feel stupid, ashamed, and unattractive" (p. 32).
* Many adolescents think that teasing, name-calling, shoving, and other harmful actions are just playful pranks (Shakeshaft et al., 1997). This mindset may be reinforced by the adults in their lives.
* Pellegrini, Bartini, and Brooks (1999) reported that some adultsmaintain a belief that students must learn to deal with bullies by themselves (i.e., tough it out). Negative feelings, combined with a mixed array of changes in their bodies, their relationships with their peers and adults, and their emotions increase the risk factors associated with adolescence.
* One of the most painful aspects of bullying is that it is relentless. Most people can take one...
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