Student-to-Student Harassment

File: JBA

Harassment of students by other students will not be tolerated in the (Name of District) public Schools. This policy is in effect while students are on school grounds, school district property or property within the jurisdiction of the school district, school buses, or no or engaging in school activities.

Harassment prohibited by the district includes, but is not limited to, harassment on the basis of race, sex, creed, color, national origin, sexual orientation, religion, marital status or disability. Students whose behavior is found to be in violation of this policy will be subject to disciplinary action up to and including suspension or expulsion.

Harassment means conduct of a verbal or physical nature that is designed to embarrass, distress, agitate, disturb or trouble students when:

  • Submission to such conduct is made either explicitly or implicitly a term or condition of a student’s education or of a student’s participation in school programs or activities;
  • Submission to or rejection of such conduct by a student is used as the basis for decisions affecting the student, or;
  • Such conduct has the purpose or effect of unreasonably interfering with a student’s performance or creating an intimidating or hostile learning environment.

Harassment as described above may include, but is not limited to:

  • Verbal, physical or written harassment or abuse;
  • Repeated remarks of a demeaning nature;
  • Implied or explicit threats concerning one’s grades, achievements, or other school matter.
  • Demeaning jokes, stories, or activities directed at the student.

The district will promptly and reasonably investigate allegations of harassment. The Principal of each building will be responsible for handling all complaints by students alleging harassment.

Retaliation against a student because a student has filed a harassment complaint or an assisted or participated in a harassment investigation or proceeding is also prohibited. A student who is found to have retaliated against another in violation of this policy will be subject to disciplinary action up to and including suspension and expulsion.

The superintendent will develop administrative guidelines and procedures for the implementation of this policy.

References: Words that Hurt“, American School Board Journal, September 1999
National Education Policy Network, NSBA

Legal Ref.:
M.G.L. 151B:3A
Title VII, Section 703, Civil Rights Act of 1964 as amended
Board of Education 603 CMR 26:00