Bullying Prevention and Intervention – APC034
Reviewed/Revised: March 2018
The Waterloo Catholic District School Board (WCDSB) is committed to the establishment and maintenance of safe, caring, equitable, and inclusive school environments in order to maximize the learning potential of all students and to ensure a positive school climate for all members of the school community.
Students and educators have the right to a safe, secure and inviting school environment free from all forms of harassment, bullying, threats and violence of any kind.
Bullying (physical, emotional, verbal, electronic) is a particularly insidious form of violence. It is destructive to a person’s physical and social emotional health. It also has a negative impact on the climate and culture of a school. The WCDSB believes that all forms of bullying are unacceptable and subject to consequences.
The Ministry of Education has now added bullying as an infraction that must be dealt with as part of its review of the safe schools’ initiative. School principals will use a restorative justice model as one strategy of intervention where appropriate. School districts are required to put policies and programs into place to address this serious issue.
Subsection 1(1) of the Education Act defines bullying stating “bullying” means aggressive and typically repeated behaviour by a pupil where,
(a) the behaviour is intended by the pupil to have the effect of, or the pupil ought to know that the behaviour would be likely to have the effect of, (i) causing harm, fear or distress to another individual, including physical, psychological, social or academic harm, harm to the individual’s reputation or harm to the individual’s property, or (ii) creating a negative environment at a school for another individual, and
(b) the behaviour occurs in a context where there is a real or perceived power imbalance between the pupil and the individual based on factors such as size, strength, age, intelligence, peer group power, economic status, social status, religion, ethnic origin, sexual orientation, family circumstances, gender, gender identity, gender expression, race, disability or the receipt of special education;
Bullying (188.8.131.52) For the purposes of the definition of “bullying” in subsection (1), behaviour includes the use of any physical, verbal, electronic, written or other means.
Cyber-bullying (184.108.40.206) For the purposes of the definition of “bullying” in subsection (1), bullying includes bullying by electronic means (commonly known as cyber-bullying), including, (a) creating a web page or a blog in which the creator assumes the identity of another person; (b) impersonating another person as the author of content or messages posted on the internet; and (c) communicating material electronically to more than one individual or posting material on a website that may be accessed by one or more individuals.
The purpose of this Administrative Procedures Memorandum is to denounce bullying in any form because:
- Bullying adversely affects a student’s ability to learn.
- Bullying adversely affects healthy relationships and the school climate.
- Bullying adversely affects a school’s ability to educate its students.
- Bullying will not be accepted on school property, at school-related activities, on school buses, or in any other circumstances (e.g., online) where engaging in bullying will have a negative impact on the school climate.