The Southbridge Public Schools is committed to providing a safe, positive, and productive educational environment where students can achieve their highest potential. No student shall be subjected to harassment, intimidation, bullying, or cyberbullying. This consists of the time when a student gets on the school bus (or if walking, entering school grounds), enters a classroom, arrives in the cafeteria or is on our fields, gyms, playgrounds, etc., and all areas in between. In each of our schools and surrounding grounds, district employees are trained to respond to any incidents of bullying and/or harassment.
Principals have been educated about the importance of creating safe environments for our students. All incidents of bullying will be investigated and remediated. Teachers frequently discuss and review anti-bullying rules with students, emphasizing expectations and consequences. We believe that educators who are provided the strategies to detect and interrupt bullying in our schools serve to create a safer environment.
Southbridge Public Schools is committed to ensuring our schools are safe and caring places for students. Students and staff will treat each other with respect and refuse to tolerate bullying in any form at our schools.
Identifying an act as "unkind" or "bullying" may, at times, seem unclear. Decisions are based on interpretation of events following an investigation, perception of intent by the target, and intent/motive of the individual causing harm. It is important to understand what is bullying and what is not based on the definitions below.
- Deliberate or intentional behavior using words or actions, intended to cause fear, intimidation, or harm.
- Intentional, aggressive, and hostile behavior.
- An act that involves an imbalance of power between the bully and the target.
- Behavior that is repeated over time rather than an isolated incident.
- Physical (assault, hitting, kicking, punching, other acts that physically hurt another person).
- Verbal (threatening statements, teasing, name-calling, or put-downs).
- Indirect (spreading rumors, falsely accusing another person, intimidation through gestures, social exclusion, cyber-bullying).
Successful enforcement of anti-bullying policy and bullying prevention requires a collaborative effort among staff, students, and parents.
Websites Focused on Bullying Prevention
Internet Safety for Kids & Families
Publication: "That's Confidential"
Elizabeth Englander Publications on Bullying
Superintendent & Principals Talk on Bullying
Websites Focused on Internet Safety: