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The Tannehill Public Schools’ student conduct code prohibits bullying.  This regulation further explains the negative effects of that behavior and seeks to promote strategies for prevention.


Statement of Board Purpose in Adopting Policy


The board of education recognizes that bullying of students causes serious educational and personal problems, both for the student-victim and the initiator of the bullying.  The board observes that this conduct:


   1.       Has been shown by national and state studies to have a substantial adverse effect upon school district operations, the safety of students and faculty, and the educational system at large.


   2.       Substantially disrupts school operations by interfering with the district’s mission to instruct students in an atmosphere free from fear, is disruptive of school efforts to encourage students to remain in school until graduation, and is just as disruptive of the district’s efforts to prepare students for productive lives in the community as they become adults.


   3.       Substantially disrupts healthy student behavior and thereby academic achievement.  Research indicates that healthy student behavior results in increased student academic achievement.  Improvement in student behavior through the prevention or minimization of intimidation, harassment, and bullying towards student-victims simultaneously supports the district’s primary and substantial interest in operating schools that foster and promote academic achievement.


   4.       Substantially interferes with school compliance with federal law that seeks to maximize the mainstreaming of students with disabilities and hinders compliance with Individual Educational Programs containing objectives to increase the socialization of students with disabilities.  Targets of bullying are often students with known physical or mental disabilities who, as a result, are perceived by bullies as easy targets for bullying actions.


   5.       Substantially interferes with the district’s mission to advance the social skills and social and emotional well-being of students.  Targets of intimidation, harassment, and bullying are often “passive-target” students who already are lacking in social skills because they tend to be extremely sensitive, shy, display inse­curity, anxiety and/or distress; may have experienced a traumatic event; may try to use gifts, toys, money, or class assign­ments or performance bribes to protect themselves from intimidation, harassment, or bullying; are often small for their age and feel vulnerable to bullying acts; and/or may resort to carrying weapons to school for self-protection.  Passive-target victims who have been harassed and demeaned by the behavior of bullies often respond by striving to obtain power over others by becoming bullies themselves, and are specifically prone to develop into students who eventually inflict serious physical harm on other students, or, in an effort to gain power over their life or situation, commit suicide.


   6.       Substantially disrupts school operations by increasing violent acts committed against fellow students.  Violence, in this context, is frequently accompanied by criminal acts.


   7.       Substantially disrupts school operations by interfering with the reasonable expectations of other students that they can feel secure at school and not be subjected to frightening acts or be the victim of mistreatment resulting from bullying behavior.









Bullying often involves expressive gestures, speech, physical acts that are sexu­ally suggestive, lewd, vulgar, profane, or offensive to the education or social mission of this school district, and at times involves the commission of criminal acts.  This behavior interferes with the curriculum by disrupting the pres­entation of instruction and also disrupts and interferes with the student-victim’s or bystander’s ability to concen­trate, retain instruction, and study or to operate free from the effects of bullying.  This results in a reluctance or resistance to attend school.


Definition of Terms


   1.       Statutory definition of harassment, intimidation, and bullying:


              70 O.S. §24-100.3(c) of the School Safety and Bullying Prevention Act defines the terms “bullying,” as including, but not limited to a pattern of harassment, intimidation, threatening behavior, physical acts, verbal or electronic communication, directed toward a student or group of students that results in or is reasonably perceived as being done with the intent to cause negative educational or physical results for the targeted individual or group and is communicated in such a way as to disrupt or interfere with the school's educational mission or the education of any student that a reasonable person should recognize will:


             A.   Harm another student;


             B.   Damage another student’s property;


             C.   Place another student in reasonable fear of harm to the student’s person or damage to the student’s property; or


             D.   Insult or demean any student or group of students in such a way as to disrupt or interfere with the school’s educational mission or the education of any student.


   2.       The “Reasonable Person” Standard


              In determining what a “reasonable person” should recognize as an act placing a student in “reasonable” fear of harm, staff will determine “reasonableness” not only from the point of view of a mature adult, but also from the point of view of an immature child of the age of the intended victim along with, but not limited to, con­sideration of special emotional, physical, or mental needs of the particular child; personality or physical char­acteristics, or history that might cause the child to be particularly sensitive to efforts by a bully to humiliate, embarrass, or lower the self esteem of the victim; and the discipline history, personality of, and physical characteristics of the individual alleged to have engaged in the prohibited behavior.


   3.       General Display of Bullying Acts


              Bullying, for purposes of this section of the regulation, includes harassment and intimidation, and vice versa.  According to experts in the field, bullying in general is the exploitation of a less powerful person by an indi­vidual taking unfair advantage of that person, which is repeated over time, and which inflicts a negative effect on the victim.  The seriousness of a bullying act depends on the harm inflicted upon the victim and the fre­quency of the offensive acts.  Power may be, but is not limited to, physical strength, social skill, verbal ability, or other characteristics.  Bullying acts by students have been described in several different categories.







             A.   Physical Bullying includes harm or threatened harm to another’s body or property, including, but not limited to, what would reasonably be foreseen as a serious expression of intent to inflict physical harm or property damage through verbal or written speech or gestures directed at the student-victim, when con­sidering the factual circumstances in which the threat was made and the reaction of the intended victim.  Common acts include tripping, hitting, pushing, pinching, pulling hair, kicking, biting, starting fights, daring others to fight, stealing or destroying property, extortion, assaults with a weapon, other violent acts, and homicide.


             B.   Emotional Bullying includes the intentional infliction of harm to another’s self-esteem, including, but not limited to, insulting or profane remarks, insulting or profane gestures, or harassing and frightening state­ment, when such events are considered in light of the surrounding facts, the history of the students involved, and age, maturity, and special characteristics of the students.


             C.   Social Bullying includes harm to another’s group acceptance, including, but not limited to, harm resulting from intentionally gossiping about another student or intentionally spreading negative rumors about another student that results in the victim being excluded from a school activity or student group; the intentional planning and/or implementation of acts or statements that inflict public humiliation upon a student; the intentional undermining of current relationships of the victim-student through the spreading of untrue gossip or rumors designed to humiliate or embarrass the student; the use of gossip, rumors, or humiliating acts designed to deprive the student of awards, recognition, or involvement in school activi­ties; the false or malicious spreading of an untrue statement or statements about another student that exposes the victim to contempt or ridicule or deprives the victim of the confidence and respect of student peers; or the making of false statements to others that the student has committed a crime, or has an infectious, contagious, or loathsome disease, or similar egregious representations.


             D.   Sexual Bullying includes harm to another resulting from, but not limited to, making unwelcome sexual comments about the student; making vulgar, profane, or lewd comments or drawings or graffiti about the victim; directing vulgar, profane, or lewd gestures toward the victim; committing physical acts of a sexual nature at school, including the fondling or touching of private parts of the victim’s body; participation in the gossiping or spreading of false rumors about the student’s sexual life; written or verbal statements directed at the victim that would reasonably be interpreted as a serious threat to force the victim to com­mit sexual acts or to sexually assault the victim when considering the factual circumstances in which the threat was made and the reaction of the intended victim; off-campus dating violence by a student that

                    adversely affects the victim’s school performance or behavior, attendance, participation in school func­tions or extracurricular activities, or makes the victim fearful at school of the assaulting bully; or the commission of sexual assault, rape, or homicide.  Such conduct may also constitute sexual harassment – also prohibited by Tannehill Public Schools.


Procedures Applicable to the Understanding of and Prevention of Bullying of Students


   1.       Student and Staff Education and Training


              All staff will be provided with a copy of the district’s policy on prevention of bullying of students.  All students will be provided a summary of the policy and notice that a copy of the entire policy is available on request.  Tannehill Public Schools is committed to providing appropriate and relevant training to staff







              regarding identification of behavior constituting bullying of students and the prevention and management of such conduct.


              Students, like staff members, shall participate in an annual education program that sets out expectations for student behavior and emphasizes an understanding of bullying of students, the district’s prohibition of such conduct, and the reasons why the conduct is destructive, unacceptable, and will lead to discipline.  Students shall also be informed of the consequences of bullying conduct toward their peers. 


   B.       Tannehill Public Schools’ Safe School Committee


              The safe school committee has the responsibility of studying and making recommendations regarding unsafe conditions, strategies for students to avoid harm at school, student victimization, crime prevention, school violence, and other issues that interfere with an adversely affect the maintenance of safe schools.


              With respect to student harassment, intimidation, and bullying, the safe school committee shall consider and make recommendations regarding professional staff development needs of faculty and other staff related to methods to decrease student harassment, intimidation, and bullying and understanding and identifying bullying behaviors.  In addition, the committee shall make recommendations regarding: identification of methods to encourage the involvement of the community and students in addressing conduct involving bullying; methods to enhance relationships between students and school staff in order to strengthen communication; and fashioning of problem-solving teams that include counselors and/or school psychologists.


              In accomplishing its objectives, the committee shall review traditional and accepted harassment, intimidation, and bullying prevention programs utilized by other states, state agencies, or school districts.  (See also policy BDFC.)


Student Reporting


Students are encouraged to inform school personnel if they are the victim of or a witness to acts of harassment, intimidation, or bullying.


Staff Reporting


An important duty of the staff is to report acts or behavior that the employee witnesses that appears to constitute har­assing, intimidating, or bullying.  Employees, whether certified or noncertified, shall encourage students who tell them about acts that may constitute intimidation, harassment, or bullying to complete a report form.  For young students, staff members given that information will need to provide direct assistance to the student.


Staff members who witness such events are to complete reports and to submit them to the employee designated by the superintendent to receive them.  Staff members who hear of incidents that may, in the staff member’s judgment, constitute harassment, intimidation, or bullying, are to report all relevant information to the superintendent or his/her designee.










Parental Responsibilities


Parents/guardians will be informed in writing of the district’s program to stop bullying.  An administrative response to bullying may involve certain actions to be taken by parents.  Parents will be informed of the program and the means for students to report bullying acts toward them or other students.  They will also be told that to help prevent bullying at school they should encourage their children to:


   1.       Report bullying when it occurs;


   2.       Take advantage of opportunities to talk to their children about bullying;


   3.       Inform the school immediately if they think their child is being bullied or is bullying other students;


   4.       Watch for symptoms that their child may be a victim of bullying and report those symptoms; and


   5.       Cooperate fully with school personnel in identifying and resolving incidents.


Discipline of Students


In administering discipline, consideration will be given to alternative methods of punishment to ensure that the most effective discipline is administered in each case.  In all disciplinary action, teachers and administrators will be mindful of the fact that they are dealing with individual personalities.  The faculty may consider consultation with parents to determine the most effective disciplinary measure.


In considering alternatives of corrective actions, the faculty/administration of the school district will consider those listed below.  However, the school is not limited to these alternative methods, nor does this list reflect an order or sequence of events to follow in disciplinary actions.  The board of education will rely upon the judgment and discretion of the administrator to determine the appropriate remedial or corrective action in each instance.


   1.       Conference with student

   2.       Conference with parents

   3.       In-school suspension

   4.       Detention

   5.       Referral to counselor

   6.       Behavioral contract

   7.       Changing student's seat assignment or class assignment

   8.       Requiring a student to make financial restitution for damaged property

   9.       Requiring a student to clean or straighten items or facilities damaged by the student's behavior

10.       Restriction of privileges

11.       Involvement of local authorities

12.       Referring student to appropriate social agency

13.       Suspension

14.       Other appropriate disciplinary action as required and as indicated by the circumstances which may include, but is not limited to, removal from eligibility to participate or attend extracurricular activities as well as removal








              from the privilege of attending or participating in the graduation ceremony, school dances, prom, prom activities, and/or class trips. 


The above consequences will be imposed for any person who commits an act of bullying as well as any person found to have falsely accused another as a means of retaliation, reprisal, or as a means of bullying.  Strategies will be created to provide counseling or referral to appropriate services, including guidance, academic intervention, and other protection for students, both targets and perpetrators, and family members affected by bullying, as necessary. 


Publication of Policy


Annual written notice of this policy will be provided to parents, guardians, staff, volunteers, and students with age-appropriate language for students.  Notice of the policy will be posted at various locations within each school site, including but not limited to, cafeterias, school bulletin boards, and administrative offices.  The policy will be posted on the school district's website at and at each school site that has an Internet website.  The policy will be included in all student and staff handbooks.