Bullying Policy: Prevention and Response

Bullying, intimidation, and harassment diminish a student's ability to learn and a school's ability to educate. Preventing students from engaging in these disruptive behaviors and providing all students equal access to a safe, non-hostile learning environment are important District goals.

To make a report of bullying, please contact any of the individuals below:

Nondiscrimination coordinator:

Jay Morrow, Superintendent
1275 Avenue of the Cities
East Moline, IL 61244

Complaint managers:

Jay Morrow, Superintendent
1275 Avenue of the Cities
East Moline, IL 61244

Janice Roome, Comptroller
1275 Avenue of the Cities
East Moline, IL 61244

Counseling department contact page

Board policy on bullying

Link to complete Board Policy 7:180

Definition of bullying

Bullying includes cyberbullying and means any severe or pervasive physical or verbal act or conduct, including communications made in writing or electronically, directed toward a student or students that has or can be reasonably predicted to have the effect of one or more of the following:

  1. Placing the student or students in reasonable fear of harm to the student's or students' person or property;

  2. Causing a substantially detrimental effect on the student's or students' physical or mental health;

  3. Substantially interfering with the student's or students' academic performance; or

  4. Substantially interfering with the student's or students' ability to participate in or benefit from the services, activities, or privileges provided by a school.

Bullying may take various forms, including without limitation one or more of the following: harassment, threats, intimidation, stalking, physical violence, sexual harassment, sexual violence, theft, public humiliation, destruction of property, or retaliation for asserting or alleging an act of bullying. This list is meant to be illustrative and non-exhaustive.

Cyberbullying means bullying through the use of technology or any electronic communication, including without limitation any transfer of signs, signals, writing, images, sounds, data, or intelligence of any nature transmitted in whole or in part by a wire, radio, electromagnetic system, photo-electronic system, or photo-optical system, including without limitation electronic mail, Internet communications, instant messages, or facsimile communications. Cyberbullying includes the creation of a webpage or weblog in which the creator assumes the identity of another person or the knowing impersonation of another person as the author of posted content or messages if the creation or impersonation creates any of the effects enumerated in the definition of bullying. Cyberbullying also includes the distribution by electronic means of a communication to more than one person or the posting of material on an electronic medium that may be accessed by one or more persons if the distribution or posting creates any of the effects enumerated in the definition of bullying.

Bullying response plan

The Superintendent or designee shall develop and maintain a bullying prevention and response plan that advances the District's goal of providing all students with a safe learning environment free of bullying and harassment. This plan must be consistent with the following requirements:

  1. The District uses the definition of bullying as provided in this policy.

  2. Bullying is contrary to State law and the policy of this District. However, nothing in the District's bullying prevention and response plan is intended to infringe upon any right to exercise free expression or the free exercise of religion or religiously based views protected under the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution or under Section 3 of Article I of the Illinois Constitution.

  3. Students are encouraged to immediately report bullying. A report may be made orally or in writing to the Nondiscrimination Coordinator, Building Principal, Assistant Building Principal, Dean of Students, a Complaint Manager, or any staff member with whom the student is comfortable speaking. Anyone, including staff members and parents/guardians, who has information about actual or threatened bullying is encouraged to report it to the District named officials or any staff member. The District named officials and all staff members are available for help with a bully or to make a report about bullying. Anonymous reports are also accepted; however, this shall not be construed to permit formal disciplinary action solely on the basis of an anonymous report.

  4. Consistent with federal and State laws and rules governing student privacy rights, the Superintendent or designee shall promptly inform parent(s)/guardian(s) of all students involved in an alleged incident of bullying and discuss, as appropriate, the availability of social work services, counseling, school psychological services, other interventions, and restorative measures.

  5. The Superintendent or designee shall promptly investigate and address reports of bullying, by, among other things:

a. Making all reasonable efforts to complete the investigation within 10 school days after the date the report of the incident of bullying was received and taking into consideration additional relevant information received during the course of the investigation about the reported incident of bullying.

b.   Involving appropriate school support personnel and other staff persons with knowledge, experience, and training on bullying prevention, as deemed appropriate, in the investigation process.

c.   Notifying the Building Principal or school administrator or designee of the report of the incident of bullying as soon as possible after the report is received.

d. Consistent with federal and State laws and rules governing student privacy rights, providing parents and guardians of the students who are parties to the investigation information about the investigation and an opportunity to meet with the principal or school administrator or his or her designee to discuss the investigation, the findings of the investigation, and the actions taken to address the reported incident of bullying.

  1. The Superintendent or designee shall use interventions to address bullying, which may include, but are not limited to, school social work services, restorative measures, social-emotional skill building, counseling, school psychological services, and community-based services.

  2. A reprisal or retaliation against any person who reports an act of bullying is prohibited. Any person's act of reprisal or retaliation will be subject to disciplinary action, up to and including discharge with regard to employees, or suspension and/or expulsion with regard to students.

  3. A student will not be punished for reporting bullying or supplying information, even if the District's investigation concludes that no bullying occurred. However, a person who is found to have falsely accused another of bullying, as a means of retaliation, as a means of bullying, or provided false information will be treated as either: (a) bullying, (b) student discipline up to and including suspension and/or expulsion, and/or (c) both (a) and (b) for purposes of determining any consequences or other appropriate remedial actions.

  4. The District's bullying prevention and response plan is based on the engagement of a range of school stakeholders, including students and parents/guardians.

  5. The Superintendent or designee shall post this policy on the District's website, if any, and include it in the student handbook, and, where applicable, post it where other policies, rules, and standards of conduct are currently posted. The policy must be distributed annually to parents/guardians, students, and school personnel (including new employees when hired), and must also be provided periodically throughout the school year to students and faculty.

  6. Pursuant to State law and policy 2:240, Board Policy Development, the Board monitors this policy every two years by conducting a review and re-evaluation of this policy to make any necessary and appropriate revisions. The Superintendent or designee shall assist the Board with its re-evaluation and assessment of this policy's outcomes and effectiveness. Updates to this policy will reflect any necessary and appropriate revisions. This process shall include, without limitation:

a.   The frequency of victimization;

b.   Student, staff, and family observations of safety at a school;

c.   Identification of areas of a school where bullying occurs;

d.   The types of bullying utilized; and

e.   Bystander intervention or participation.

The evaluation process may use relevant data and information that the District already collects for other purposes. Acceptable documentation to satisfy the re-evaluated policy submission include one of the following:

1)  An updated version of the policy with the amendment/modification date included in the reference portion of the policy;

2)  If no revisions are deemed necessary, a copy of board minutes indicating that the policy was re-evaluated and no changes were deemed to be necessary; or

3)  A signed statement from the Board President indicating that the Board re- evaluated the policy and no changes to it were necessary.

The Superintendent or designee must post the information developed as a result of the policy re-evaluation on the District's website, or if a website is not available, the information must be provided to school administrators, Board members, school personnel, parents/guardians, and students. Reviews and re-evaluations in years they are due must be submitted to ISBE by September 30.

  1. The District's bullying prevention plan must be consistent with other Board policies.

  2. The Superintendent or designee shall fully inform staff members of the District's goal to prevent students from engaging in bullying and the measures being used to accomplish it. This includes each of the following:

a.   Communicating the District's expectation and State law requirement that teachers and other certificated or licensed employees maintain discipline.

b.   Establishing the expectation that staff members: (1) intervene immediately to stop a bullying incident that they witness or immediately contact building security and/or law enforcement if the incident involves a weapon or other illegal activity, (2) report bullying, whether they witness it or not, to an administrator, and (3) inform the administration of locations on school grounds where additional supervision or monitoring may be needed to prevent bullying.

c.   Where appropriate in the staff development program, providing strategies to staff members to effectively prevent bullying and intervene when it occurs.

d.   Establishing a process for staff members to fulfill their obligation to report alleged acts of bullying.