Anti-bullying Policy

Bullying Prevention and Intervention Policy and Plan

Revised 3/07/2023

1.1 Commitment

Riverview School is committed to creating a safe, caring, respectful learning environment for all students.  We expect that all members of our community will treat each other with civility and respect.  

Our School strictly enforces its policy against bullying of any students or staff.  学校的政策是提供和维护一个不受学校社区任何成员欺凌的学习环境, student or staff, and any other verbal or physical misconduct that disrupts or makes the learning environment unsafe.  School staff includes, but is not limited to:  educators, residential staff, administrators, health care center workers including school nurses, cafeteria workers, custodians, bus and other drivers, athletic and other coaches, advisors, paraprofessionals, staff overseeing extracurricular activity, and support staff. 

1.2 Definitions

Bullying, as defined in M.G.L. c. 71, § 37O, is the repeated use by one or more students or a member of a school staff of a written, verbal, or electronic expression or a physical act or gesture or any combination thereof, directed at a target that meets any or all of the following: 

i. Causes physical or emotional harm to the target or damage to the target’s property.
ii. Places the target in reasonable fear of harm to himself or herself or of damage to his or her property.
iii. Creates a hostile environment at school for the target.
iv. Infringes on the rights of the target at school.
v. Materially and substantially disrupts the education process or the orderly operation of a school.
 

Aggressor is a student or a member of a school staff who engages in bullying, cyber-bullying or retaliation towards a student.

Cyber­bullying, is bullying through the use of technology or electronic devices such as telephones, cell phones, computers, and the Internet.  It includes, but is not limited to, email, instant messages, text messages, and Internet postings.  See M.G.L. c. 71, § 37O for the legal definition of cyberbullying.

Hostile environment, as defined in M.G.L. c. 71, § 37O, is a situation in which bullying causes the school environment to be permeated with intimidation, ridicule, or insult that is sufficiently severe or pervasive to alter the conditions of a student’s education. 

Retaliation is any form of intimidation or reprisal, directed against a student who reports bullying, provides information during an investigation, or witnesses or has reliable information about bullying. 

School Staff includes, but is not limited to, educators, residential staff, administrators, health care center workers, including school nurses, cafeteria workers, custodians, bus and other drivers, athletic and other coaches, advisors, paraprofessionals, staff overseeing extracurricular activities, and support staff. 

Target is a student against whom bullying, cyber-bullying, or retaliation has been perpetrated.

1.3 Policy Against Bullying

Bullying is prohibited on school grounds, property, areas immediately adjacent to the school grounds, at school-sponsored or school related activities, functions, or programs whether on or off school grounds, on school buses, vans or other vehicles, or through the use of technology or an electronic device (cyberbullying). Retaliation against a person who reports bullying, provides information during an investigation of bullying, or witnesses or has reliable information about bullying is also prohibited.

Bullying is also prohibited at a location, activity, function or program that is not school-related or through the use of technology or an electronic device (cyberbullying), if the act or acts in question create a hostile environment at school for the target, infringe on the rights of the target at school, or materially and substantially disrupt the education process or the safe and orderly operation of the School.

Administrators and staff will make clear to students and staff that bullying is not to be tolerated and will be grounds for disciplinary action up to and including suspension and expulsion for students and termination for employees.  All students will be required to read and sign a “Safe Learning Environment Pledge” annually.

All staff members are required to report any bullying they see or learn about. Administrators will promptly and reasonably investigate all allegations of bullying.  The Advisors or Education and/or Residential Program Coordinators will be responsible for handling all initial complaints alleging bullying.  These initial complaints would then be reported to the Administrative Team. Retaliation against a person who reports bullying, who provides information during an investigation, or who is a witness to or has reliable information about bullying, is prohibited.

The Riverview School Bullying Prevention and Intervention Plan, set forth below, 是对马萨诸塞州反欺凌法的回应,是我们努力促进学习和防止阻碍学习过程的行为的一个组成部分.  Riverview’s plan spells out the school’s comprehensive approach to addressing bullying, cyber-bullying, and retaliation.

This plan is consistent with broader protections at Riverview against discrimination, harassment, bullying, and retaliation that appear in our Student/Parent Handbook and the Personnel Handbook.

As a school for students with special needs (complex language, learning and cognitive disabilities), we recognize that our students may be more vulnerable to becoming targets of teasing or bullying.  Additionally, certain students may be more vulnerable to becoming a target of bullying based on actual or perceived differentiating characteristics, including race, color, religion, ancestry, national origin, sex, socioeconomic status, homelessness, academic status, gender identity or expression, physical appearance, pregnant or parenting status, sexual orientation, mental, physical, developmental or sensory disability, or by association with a person who has or is perceived to have one or more of these characteristics. We will use the proactive measures outlined to create a safe supportive environment and to provide all students with the skills, knowledge and strategies to prevent or respond to bullying or teasing.

It is also important to acknowledge that Riverview students, due to cognitive, social, and language challenges, may unintentionally hurt or offend others.  There is, in many cases, no malicious intent to these behaviors or remarks, which are oftentimes a result of lack of understanding of social conventions or limited experience with interpersonal relationships.  While such incidents do not constitute bullying, every effort will be made to provide supports, instruction, and guidance in helping the student(s) involved to resolve such conflicts and find more acceptable manners of interacting. 

It is essential that this plan be well understood by all members of the Riverview community.  The Administrative Team is responsible for the implementation and administration.  Questions and concerns related to this may be referred to the Administrative Team.

1.4 Reporting Bullying and/or Retaliation

Reports of bullying or retaliation may be made by staff, students, parents or guardians, or others, and may be oral or written.  Oral reports made by or to a staff member shall be recorded in writing.  A school or staff member is required to report immediately to an Administrator or designee or to the Head of School or designee when Administrator is the alleged aggressor or to the Assistant Head of School or designee when the Head of School is the alleged aggressor, any instance of bullying or retaliation the staff member becomes aware of or witnesses.    Reports made by students, parents or guardians, or other individuals who are not school staff members, may be made anonymously.  Reporting resources available to the school community include, but not limited to, the Incident Reporting Form, voicemail, and email. 

Upon being notified of a bullying or retaliation claim, the Administrator or designee shall reach out to the student, parent, staff member, or other individual and notify then of their right to file a formal complaint.  The Administrator or designee will direct the reporting party to the Bullying Policy and reporting form.  Reports may also be made verbally and documented by the Administrator or designee.  If the party does not wish to file a formal complaint at this time, the party’s response should be noted, and the conversation documented.

Use of an Incident Reporting Form is not required as a condition of making a report.  The Incident Reporting Form is available:

  1. On the school’s website.

  2. On the school’s portal. 

  3. In the school’s main office.

  4. From any member of the School Leadership Team.

At the beginning of each school year, designated Administrators will provide the school community, including administrators, staff, students, and parents or guardians, 并将其报告欺凌和报复行为的政策书面通知作为人事手册和学生/家长手册的一部分(位于Riverview门户网站).  The plan is also accessible via the school website and school portal.

1.4a Reporting by Staff

工作人员目睹或发现可能是欺凌或报复的行为时,应立即向署长报告. The requirement to report to an Administrator or designee does not limit the authority of the staff member to respond to behavioral or disciplinary incidents consistent with school policies and procedures for behavior management and discipline.  Written documentation must be completed before the end of the staff person’s shift.

1.4b Reporting by Students, Parents or Guardians, Anonymous Sources, and Others

The school expects students, parents or guardians, 以及其他目睹或意识到涉及学生的欺凌或报复事件的人向行政团队成员报告. Reports may be made anonymously, but no disciplinary action will be taken against an alleged aggressor solely based on an anonymous report.  Students, parents or guardians, and others may request assistance from a staff member to complete a written report.  Students will be provided practical, safe, private, and age-appropriate ways to report and discuss an incident with a staff member, or a member of the Administrative Team. Should another person make a verbal report to a staff person, the staff person must immediately notify an Administrator and follow up with a written report before the end of the staff person’s shift.

1.5 Responding to a Report of Bullying or Retaliation

1.5a Safety

Before fully investigating the allegations of bullying or retaliation, 行政小组将采取步骤,评估是否需要使指称的目标恢复安全感和/或保护指称的目标免遭可能发生的进一步事件.  Such protections will likewise be available for a student who has witnessed bullying or retaliation; who provides information during an investigation; or who has reliable information about a reported act of bullying or retaliation.  Responses to promote safety may include, but not be limited to, creating a personal safety plan; pre-determining seating arrangements in the classroom, dining room, dormitory, or on the bus; identifying a staff member who will act as a “safe person” for the target; and altering the student aggressor’s schedule and access to the target.  The Administrative Team will take additional steps to promote safety during the course of and after the investigation, as necessary.

1.5b Obligations to Notify Others

Notice to Parents or Guardians
Upon determining that bullying or retaliation has occurred, the Administrator will promptly notify the parents or guardians of the target and the student aggressor(s) of this, and of the procedures for responding to it.  There may be circumstances in which an Administrator contacts parents or guardians prior to the investigation. Notice will be consistent with state regulations at 603 CMR 49.00.

Notice to Another School or District
If the reported incident involves students from more than one school district, charter school, non-public school, approved private special education day or residential school, or collaborative school, the principal or designee first informed of the incident will promptly notify by telephone the principal or designee of the other school (s) of the incident so that each school may take appropriate action.  All communications will be in accordance with state and federal privacy laws and regulations, and 603 CMR 49.00.

Notice to Law Enforcement
At any point after receiving a report of bullying or retaliation, including after an investigation, if the Administrator has a reasonable basis to believe that criminal charges may be pursued against the aggressor, the Administrator will notify the local law enforcement agency.  Notice will be consistent with requirements of 603 CMR 49.00 and locally established agreements with local law enforcement agency.  Also, if an incident occurs on school grounds and involves a former student under the age of 21 who is no longer enrolled in school, 署长如有合理根据认为可以对侵略者提出刑事指控,应与当地执法机构联系.  In making this determination, the Administrator will, consistent with the plan and with applicable school policies and procedures, consult with any other individuals the Administrator deems appropriate.

1.6 Investigation

The Administrator will investigate promptly all reports of bullying or retaliation and, in doing so; will consider all available information known, including the nature of the allegation(s) and the ages of the students involved.

Upon receipt of a bullying allegation, an Administrator or designee will speak with the reporter, the target, and the alleged aggressor to conduct a Preliminary Investigation.  Based on the results of these interviews, the Administrator will determine:

  • Does the alleged behavior(s) potentially represent bullying.  If so, a formal investigation will be launched; or

  • Are the alleged behavior(s) the result of the cognitive, social, language challenges, and/or difficulties with social conventions and interpersonal relationships that many of the Riverview students experience.

Should the need for a formal investigation be determined, the Administrator or designee will, among other things, interview students, staff, witnesses, parents, or guardians, and/or others as necessary.  The Administrator (or whoever is conducting the investigation) will inform the alleged aggressor, target, and witnesses of the importance of the investigation, their obligation to be truthful and that retaliation against someone who reports bullying or provides information during an investigation is strictly prohibited and will result in disciplinary action. 

If a staff member is identified as an alleged aggressor, the staff person may be put on paid administrative leave until the investigation is completed.  In the event that there is a suspicion of substance abuse, drug/alcohol testing may be required, per the Riverview School Personnel Manual.

Interviews may be conducted by the Administrator, other staff members determined by the Administrator, and in consultation with an Advisor or Residential Program Coordinator, as appropriate.  To the extent practicable and given his/her obligation to investigate and address the matter, the Administrator will maintain confidentiality during the investigation process.  Other staff members interviewed will be instructed to maintain confidentiality.  The Administrator will maintain record of the investigation.

Procedures for investigating reports of bullying and retaliation will be consistent with school policies and procedures for investigations.  If necessary, the Administrator will consult with legal counsel about the investigation.

1.7 Determination

The Administrator will make a determination based upon all of the facts and circumstances.  If, after the investigation, bullying or retaliation is substantiated, the Administrator will take steps reasonably calculated to prevent reoccurrence and to ensure that the target is not restricted in participating in school or in benefiting from school activities.  The administrator will: 1) determine what remedial action is required, if any, and 2) determine what responsive actions and/or disciplinary action is necessary.

Depending upon the circumstances, the Administrator may choose to consult with the student’s teacher(s) and/or Advisor or Residential Program Coordinator, and the target’s or student aggressor’s parents or guardians, 识别任何潜在的社会或情感问题,这些问题可能导致了这种行为,并评估对额外社交技能发展的需求程度.

The Administrator will promptly notify the parents or guardians of the target and the aggressor about the results of the investigation and, if bullying or retaliation is found, what action is being taken to prevent further acts.  All notice(s) to parents will comply with applicable state and federal privacy laws and regulations.

Note well: Because of the legal requirement regarding the confidentiality of student records, the Administrator cannot report specific information to the target’s parent or guardian about the disciplinary action taken unless it involves a “stay away” order or other directive that the target must be aware of in order to report violations.

1.8 Responses to Bullying or Retaliation by Students

1.8a Teaching Appropriate Behavior Through Skills-Building

Upon the Administrator determining that bullying or retaliation has occurred, 法律要求学校采取一系列应对措施,以平衡问责制的需要和教授适当行为的需要. Skill-building approaches that the Administrator may consider will include:

  • Offering individualized skill-building sessions based on the school’s anti-bullying curricula.

  • Providing relevant educational activities for individual students or groups of students, in consultation with the Advisor and /or Residential Program Coordinator.

  • 实施一系列学术和非学术的积极行为支持,帮助学生理解亲社会的方式来实现他们的目标.

  • 与家长和监护人会面,争取家长的支持,并在家中加强反欺凌课程和社会技能建设活动.

  • Adopting behavior plans to include a focus on developing specific social skills.

  • Counseling or referral for targets, aggressors, and/or families.

  • Making a referral for evaluation.

1.8b Taking Disciplinary Action

If the Administrator decides that disciplinary action is appropriate, the disciplinary action will be determined on the basis of facts found by the Administrator, including the nature of the conduct, age of the student(s) involved, and the need to balance accountability with the teaching of appropriate behavior.  Discipline will be consistent with the plan and with the school’s discipline policy. A range of disciplinary actions, includes, but is not limited to, the following:

  • Schedule modification

  • Detention

  • In-house suspension

  • Suspension (home)

  • Expulsion

残疾学生的纪律程序由联邦《买足彩app平台》(IDEA)管辖。, which should be read in cooperation with state laws regarding student discipline. As noted in 1.7, due to confidentiality requirements, the Administrator is unable to notify the target’s parent or guardian about the disciplinary action taken unless it involves a “stay away” order or other directive that the target must be aware of in order to report violations.

If the Administrator determines that a student knowingly made a false allegation of bullying or retaliation, that student may be subject to disciplinary action.

1.8c Promoting Safety/Protection for the Target and Others

The Administrator will consider what adjustments, if any, are needed in the school environment to enhance the target’s sense of safety and that of others as well, including anyone who provides information during an investigation or witnesses/provides reliable information about an act.  在过渡时期和已知发生或可能发生此类行为的地点,应加强成人监督.

Within a reasonable period of time following the determination and the ordering of remedial and/or disciplinary action, 署长将与目标对象联系,以确定是否再次发生被禁止的行为,以及是否需要采取额外的支助措施.  If, so the Administrator will work with appropriate school staff to implement them immediately.

1.9 Responses to Bullying or Retaliation by Staff

1.9a Taking Disciplinary Action

If the Administrator decides that disciplinary action is appropriate, the disciplinary action will be determined based on facts found by the Administrator.  A range of disciplinary actions, includes, but is not limited to, the following:

  • Schedule Modification

  • Participation in additional training

  • Requirement of counseling

  • Decision making leave (paid or unpaid)

  • Termination

Within a reasonable period of time following the determination and the ordering of remedial and/or disciplinary action, the Administrator will contact the target to determine whether there has been a recurrence of the prohibited conduct and whether additional supportive and/or disciplinary measures are needed.  If, so the Administrator will implement them immediately.  Reoccurrence of bullying or retaliation by a staff person following prior intervention may result in immediate termination.

1.10 Resolution, Notification, and Follow-up

Following interviews and any other investigation undertaken, as the School deems appropriate, the Administrative Team will determine whether and to what extent the allegation of bullying, cyber-bullying or retaliation has been substantiated.  If it is determined that the policy set forth in this plan has been violated, the Administrative Team will determine what disciplinary action and/or other remedial action is appropriate and how it will be implemented. 

The goal of an investigation and any disciplinary or other remedial process that is imposed following that investigation is to correct the situation to the extent it is reasonably possible and to take such steps as can be taken to prevent there being a repetition of the incident and to prevent the student or students targeted and others who participate in the investigation from being subject to retaliation.

In appropriate circumstances, 例如,当犯罪可能已经发生,或者儿童可能受到根据马萨诸塞州法律第51A条可报告的虐待或忽视时, law enforcement or another appropriate government agency will be notified.

Upon completion of the investigation, the Administrator who conducted the investigation or designee will meet individually with the student or students who were the target of the alleged incident and will notify their parents of the outcome of the investigation.  Follow up will also occur with the student or students against whom the complaint was made and their parents.  During these discussions, the school will report the results of the investigation and, where disciplinary or other corrective action is determined to be appropriate, inform the parties of the steps that will be taken to correct the situation.  The amount of information provided in these communications may be limited by confidentiality laws protecting student records.  我们将与任何被发现违反本政策的学生及其家长进行后续联系,以询问是否有进一步的事件发生. 

1.10a Problem Resolution System:

As part of this process, the Administrator or designee shall inform the parent or guardian of the target about the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education’s problem resolution system and the process for accessing that system, regardless of the outcome of the determination:

Any parent wishing to file a claim/concern or seeking assistance outside of the district may do so with the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education Program Resolution System (PRS). That information can be found at: http://www.doe.mass.edu/pqa, emails can be sent to compliance@doe.mass.edu or individuals can call 781-338-3700. Hard copies of this information are also available from the Director of Education.

1.11 Programs

Riverview School will implement an anti-bullying program as a required part of the curriculum at each grade level.  It will be based on developmentally and age-appropriate instruction on bullying prevention using evidence-based curricula.  Furthermore, Riverview将在每个年级提供关于文明和道德行为的指导,并要求学生和成年人在任何时候都要对彼此的行为负责. 

Instruction will include appreciation of human differences and avoidance of behaviors that discriminate against others based on their gender, gender identity and gender expression, sexual orientation, race, national origin, religion, or disability.  

The school will conduct a survey every four years or more frequently as deemed appropriate, to assess the school climate and the prevalence, nature, and severity of bullying in the school.  Feedback from the survey will be used to inform improvements, resources, and curricula additions.  Additionally, the school will comply with any and all Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) data reporting requirements.

1.12 Training And Professional Development

1.12a Professional Development:

欺凌预防和干预计划将包括学校所有员工的年度专业发展,以建立预防的技能, identify and respond to bullying and to implement the plan.  School staff includes, but is not limited to:  educators, residential staff, administrators, health care center workers, including school nurses, cafeteria workers, custodians, bus drivers, athletic and other coaches, advisors, paraprofessionals and support staff. 

The content of the professional development will include, but not be limited to:

  1. Developmentally appropriate strategies to prevent bullying.

  2. Developmentally appropriate strategies for immediate, effective interventions to stop bullying incidents.

  3. Information regarding the complex interaction and power differential that can take place between and among an aggressor, target, and witnesses to the bullying.

  4. Research findings on bullying, 包括关于特定类别的学生的信息,这些学生被证明在学校环境中特别容易受到欺凌.       

  5. Information on the incidence and nature of cyberbullying.

  6. Internet safety issues as they relate to cyberbullying. 

Professional development will also address ways to prevent and respond to bullying or retaliation for students with disabilities that must be considered when developing students’ Individualized Education Programs (IEPs).  This will include a particular focus on the needs of students with autism or students whose disability affects social skills development.

Additional areas identified by the school or district for professional development may include:

  1. Promoting and modeling the use of respectful language.

  2. Fostering an understanding of and respect for diversity and difference.

  3. Building relationships and communicating with families.

  4. Constructively managing behaviors.

  5. Using positive behavioral intervention strategies.

  6. Applying constructive disciplinary practices.

  7. Teaching students skills, including positive communication, anger management, and empathy for others.

  8. Engaging students in planning and decision-making.

  9. Maintaining a safe and caring environment for all students.

  10. 聘请工作人员和负责执行和监督计划的人员区分旨在纠正不当行为的可接受的管理行为, instill accountability in the school setting, etc. and bullying behaviors.

1.12b Written notice to staff

The school or will provide all staff with an annual written notice of the plan by publishing information about it, including sections related to staff duties and bullying/harassment of students by school staff, in the Personnel Manual.

1.13 Collaboration With Families

欺凌预防和干预计划将包括教育家长和监护人买足彩app平台欺凌预防课程的规定, how they can reinforce the curriculum at home, how they can support Riverview’s prevention and intervention plan, the dynamics of bullying and online safety and cyber-bullying.

Riverview将每年向学生及其家长或监护人提供《买足彩app平台》中欺凌预防计划相关章节的书面通知.

1.14 Support Services/resources

1.14a Identifying resources

Riverview’s Administrative Team and Advisors (licensed social workers/ licensed mental health counselors) have identified our capacity to provide counseling and other services for targets, student aggressors, and their families.  This includes a review of current staffing and programs that support the positive school environment by focusing on being proactive, providing ample structure and supervision services.  This includes adopting new curricula, educating staff, establishing safety planning teams, and identifying other agencies that can provide services.

1.14b Counseling and other services

This plan includes utilizing Riverview support services (Social Workers/ Mental Health Counselors), as well as the support of outside therapists who have longstanding relationships with our school.  Riverview的社会工作者/心理健康咨询师将共同概述我们的外部资源如何帮助我们为已经成为目标的学生制定安全计划.  Our Speech and Language Pathologists will collaborate with Social Workers/ Mental Health Counselors to provide social skills to prevent bullying and will offer education and/or intervention services for students exhibiting such behaviors. These plans may include: behavioral intervention plans, social skills groups, and individually focused curricula. Support will be provided to family members of the involved student(s) as appropriate.

1.14c Students with disabilities

As required by M.G.L. c. 71B, §3, as amended by Chapter 92 of the Acts of 2010, when the IEP Team determines the student has a disability that affects social skills development or the student may participate in or is vulnerable to bullying or teasing because of his/her disability, 小组将考虑在IEP中应该包括哪些内容,以培养学生的技能和熟练程度,以避免和应对欺凌或戏弄.

1.14d Referral to outside services

With the support of our Advisors, Riverview will establish a referring protocol for referring students and families to outside services.  Clear protocols will help students and families access appropriate and timely services.  Referrals must comply with relevant laws and policies.  Current local referral protocols will be evaluated to assess their relevance to the plan and revised as needed.

1.15 Relationship To Other Laws

Consistent with state and federal laws, and the policies of the school or district, no person shall be discriminated against in admission to a public school of any town or in obtaining the advantages, privilege, and courses of study of such public school on account of race, color, sex, religion, national origin, or sexual orientation.  该计划不妨碍学校或地区采取行动,纠正基于个人在当地法律保护类别中的成员资格的歧视或骚扰, state, or federal law, or school or district policies.

In addition, 本计划的任何内容均不旨在或意图限制学校或地区根据M . 5采取纪律处分或其他行动的权力.G.L. c. 71, §§ 37H or 37H½, M.G.L. c. 71, §§41 and 42, M.G.L. c 76 § 5, or other applicable laws, or local school or district policies, or collective bargaining agreements, in response to violent, harmful, or disruptive behavior, regardless of whether the Plan covers the behavior.

1.16 Conclusion

This plan is intended to: (1) prevent bullying, cyber-bullying, and retaliation among any and all members of the school community, both students and staff; (2) to encourage students, their parents, and staff to have confidence in the School’s procedures and to come forward promptly whenever a student is subject to conduct that is prohibited by this or any other School policy and; (3) to implement appropriate discipline and other corrective measures when they are found to be warranted.

STUDENT - Safe Learning Environment Pledge

By signing below, I commit to the following:

  1. I will be kind to peers and adults.

  2. I will use respectful language (No swearing).

  3. I will refrain from teasing or verbal abuse.

  4. I pledge not to participate in any kind of physical violence.

  5. I will be safe when I use technology (cell phone, computer, texting, video chatting.)  I will not send hurtful messages, spread rumors or send embarrassing information about others.

Student Name:
Student Signature:
Date:
(Completed electronically as part of Annual Student Update)

Forms

To report an incident, please download this form.

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