5512.01- HARASSMENT, INTIMIDATION, AND BULLYING (M)
M
Policy Statement
The Board of Education prohibits acts of harassment, intimidation, or bullying of a pupil. A
safe and civil environment in school is necessary for pupils to learn and achieve high academic
standards. Harassment, intimidation, or bullying, like other disruptive or violent behaviors, is
conduct that disrupts both a pupil’s ability to learn and a school’s ability to educate its pupils in
a safe and disciplined environment. Since pupils learn by example, school administrators,
faculty, staff and volunteers should be commended for demonstrating appropriate behavior,
treating others with civility and respect, and refusing to tolerate harassment, intimidation, or
bullying.
“Harassment, intimidation, or bullying” means any gesture, written, verbal or physical act, or
any electronic communication, that takes place on school property, at any school-sponsored
function or on a school bus and that:

1. Is motivated by any actual or perceived characteristic, such as race, color,
religion, ancestry, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity and
expression, or a mental, physical or sensory disability; or
 
2. By any other distinguishing characteristic; and
 
3. A reasonable person should know, under the circumstances, that the act(s) will
have the effect of harming a pupil or damaging the pupil’s property, or placing a
pupil in reasonable fear of harm to his/her person or damage to his/her property;
or
4. Has the effect of insulting or demeaning any pupil or group of pupils in such a
way as to cause substantial disruption in, or substantial interference with, the
orderly operation of the school.
 
“Electronic communication” means communication transmitted by means of an electronic
device, including, but not limited to, a telephone, cellular phone, computer, or pager.
Acts of harassment, intimidation, or bullying may also be a pupil exercising power and control
over another pupil, either in isolated incidents (e.g., intimidation, harassment) or patterns of
harassing or intimidating behavior (e.g., bullying).
 
POLICY Willingboro Township
Board of Education
Section: Pupils
5512.01. HARASSMENT, INTIMIDATION, AND BULLYING (M)
Date Created: September, 2007
Date Edited: September, 2007
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This Policy may impose consequences for acts of harassment, intimidation, or bullying that
occur off school grounds, such as cyber-bullying (e.g., the use of electronic or wireless devices
to harass, intimidate, or bully), to the extent this Policy complies with the provisions of
N.J.A.C. 6A:16-7.6, Conduct Away from School Grounds, and the district’s code of pupil
conduct, pursuant to N.J.A.C. 6A:16-7.1. In all instances of harassment, intimidation, or
bullying behavior occurring off school grounds, the consequences only may be exercised when
it is reasonably necessary for the pupil’s physical or emotional safety and well-being or for
reasons relating to the safety and well-being of other pupils, staff or school grounds, pursuant to
N.J.S.A. 18A:25-2 and 18A:37-2, and when the conduct which is the subject of a proposed
consequence materially and substantially interferes with the requirements of appropriate
discipline in the operation of the school. All acts of harassment, intimidation, or bullying that
include the use of school property (e.g., school computers, other electronic or wireless
communication devices) apply to the provisions of N.J.S.A. 18A:37-15 and N.J.A.C. 6A:16-
7.9, harassment, intimidation, and bullying, whether the subject or recipient of the bullying is
on or off school property.
Expected Behavior
The Board expects pupils to conduct themselves in keeping with their levels of development,
maturity and demonstrated capabilities with proper regard for the rights and welfare of other
pupils and school staff, the educational purpose underlying all school activities and the care of
school facilities and equipment consistent with the code of pupil conduct.
The Board believes that standards for pupil behavior must be set cooperatively through
interaction among the pupils, parent(s) or legal guardian(s), staff and community members,
producing an atmosphere that encourages pupils to grow in self-discipline. The development of
this atmosphere requires respect for self and others, as well as for school district and
community property on the part of pupils, staff and community members.
The Board believes the best discipline is self-imposed, and it is the responsibility of school
district staff to use instances of violations of the code of pupil conduct as opportunities to help
pupils learn to assume and accept responsibility for their behavior and the consequences of their
behavior. Staff members who interact with pupils shall apply best practices designed to prevent
pupil conduct problems and foster pupils’ abilities to grow in self-discipline.
General guidelines for pupil conduct will be developed by the Superintendent, in conjunction
with school staff, and approved by the Board. These guidelines will be developed based on
accepted core ethical values from a broad community involvement with input from parent(s) or
legal guardian(s) and other community representatives, school employees, volunteers, pupils
and administrators. These guidelines for pupil conduct will be suited to the developmental ages
of pupils, the severity of the offenses and pupils’ histories of inappropriate behaviors, and the
mission and physical facilities of the individual school(s) in the district. This Policy requires all
pupils in the district to adhere to these rules and guidelines and to submit to the remedial and
consequential measures that are appropriately assigned for infractions of these rules and
guidelines.
The district prohibits active or passive support for acts of harassment, intimidation, or bullying.
Pupils are encouraged to support other pupils who walk away from these acts when they see
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them, constructively attempt to stop them, and report these acts to the Building Principal or
designee.
Pupils are required to conform to reasonable standards of socially acceptable behavior; respect
the person, property and rights of others; obey constituted authority; and respond to school
district teaching, support and administrative staff. Each Building Principal will develop and
provide a school-based program for appropriate recognition for positive reinforcement for good
conduct, self-discipline, good citizenship and academic success.
Consequences and Appropriate Remedial Actions
The Board of Education requires its school administrators to implement procedures that ensure
both the appropriate consequences and remedial responses for pupils and staff members who
commit one or more acts of harassment, intimidation, or bullying, consistent with the code of
pupil conduct. The following factors, at a minimum, shall be given full consideration by school
administrators in the implementation of appropriate consequences and remedial measures for
each act of harassment, intimidation, or bullying by pupils. Appropriate consequences and
remedial actions are those that are graded according to the severity of the offense(s), and
consider the developmental ages of the pupil offenders and pupils’ histories of inappropriate
behaviors, per the code of pupil conduct.
Factors for Determining Consequences
1. Age, developmental and maturity levels of the parties involved;
2. Degrees of harm;
3. Surrounding circumstances;
4. Nature and severity of the behavior(s);
5. Incidences of past or continuing patterns of behavior;
6. Relationships between the parties involved; and
7. Context in which the alleged incidents occurred.
Factors for Determining Remedial Measures
Personal
1. Life skill deficiencies;
2. Social relationships;
3. Strengths;
4. Talents;
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5. Traits;
6. Interests;
7. Hobbies;
8. Extra-curricular activities;
9. Classroom participation; and
10. Academic performance.
Environmental
1. School culture;
2. School climate;
3. Pupil-staff relationships and staff behavior toward the pupil;
4. General staff management of classrooms or other educational environments;
5. Staff ability to prevent and manage difficult or inflammatory situations;
6. Social-emotional and behavioral supports;
7. Social relationships;
8. Community activities;
9. Neighborhood situation; and
10. Family situation.
Consequences and appropriate remedial action for pupils who commit acts of harassment,
intimidation, or bullying may range from positive behavioral interventions up to and including
suspension or expulsion, as set forth in the Board adopted Pupil Discipline/Code of Conduct
pursuant to N.J.A.C. 6A:16-7.1. Consequences for a pupil who commits an act of harassment,
intimidation, or bullying shall be varied and graded according to the nature of the behavior, the
developmental age of the pupil and the pupil’s history of problem behaviors and performance,
and must be consistent with the district’s code of pupil conduct. Remedial measures shall be
designed to correct the problem behavior, prevent another occurrence of the problem, protect
and provide support for the victim of the act, and take corrective action for documented
systemic problems related to harassment, intimidation, and bullying. The consequences and
remedial measures may include, but are not limited to, the examples listed below:
Examples of Consequences
1. Admonishment;
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2. Temporary removal from the classroom;
3. Deprivation of privileges;
4. Classroom or administrative detention;
5. Referral to disciplinarian;
6. In-school suspension during the school week or the weekend;
7. After-school programs;
8. Out-of-school suspension (short-term or long-term);
9. Legal action; and
10. Expulsion.
Examples of Remedial Measures - Personal
1. Restitution and restoration;
2. Mediation;
3. Peer support group;
4. Recommendations of a pupil behavior or ethics council;
5. Corrective instruction or other relevant learning or service experience;
6. Supportive pupil interventions, including participation of the Intervention and
Referral Services Team, pursuant to N.J.A.C. 6A:16-8;
7. Behavioral assessment or evaluation, including, but not limited to, a referral to
the Child Study Team, as appropriate;
8. Behavioral management plan, with benchmarks that are closely monitored;
9. Assignment of leadership responsibilities (e.g., hallway or bus monitor);
10. Involvement of school disciplinarian;
11. Pupil counseling;
12. Parent conferences;
13. Pupil treatment; or
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14. Pupil therapy.
Examples of Remedial Measures – Environmental (Classroom, School Building or School
District)
1. School and community surveys or other strategies for determining the conditions
contributing to harassment, intimidation, or bullying;
2. School culture change;
3. School climate improvement;
4. Adoption of research-based, systemic bullying prevention programs;
5. School policy and procedures revisions;
6. Modifications of schedules;
7. Adjustments in hallway traffic;
8. Modifications in pupil routes or patterns traveling to and from school;
9. Targeted use of monitors (e.g., hallway, cafeteria, bus);
10. Small or large group presentations for fully addressing the behaviors and the
responses to the behaviors;
11. General professional development programs for certificated and non-certificated
staff;
12. Professional development plans for involved staff;
13. Disciplinary action for school staff who contributed to the problem;
14. Supportive institutional interventions, including participation of the Intervention
and Referral Services Team, pursuant to N.J.A.C. 6A:16-8;
15. Parent conferences;
16. Family counseling;
17. Involvement of parent-teacher organizations;
18. Involvement of community-based organizations;
19. Development of a general bullying response plan;
20. Recommendations of a pupil behavior or ethics council;
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21. Peer support groups;
22. School transfers; and
23. Law enforcement (e.g., school resource office, juvenile officer) involvement.
N.J.A.C. 6A:16-7.9(a)2.vi requires appropriate consequences and remedial actions for any staff
member who commits an act of harassment, intimidation, or bullying. The consequences may
include, but not be limited to, verbal or written reprimand, increment withholding, legal action,
disciplinary action, and/or termination. Remedial measures may include, but not be limited to,
in or out–of-school counseling, professional development programs, and work environment
modifications.
Reporting Procedure
Complaints alleging violations of this Policy shall be reported to the Principal or designee. All
school employees as well as all other members of the school community including pupils,
parent(s) or legal guardian(s), volunteers, and visitors are required to report alleged violations
of this Policy to the Principal or designee. While submission of an Incident Report Form to the
Principal or designee is not required, the reporting party is encouraged to use the Incident
Report Form available from the Building Principal or available at the school district’s
administrative offices or the reporting party may use a district’s web-based reporting system.
Oral reports shall also be considered official reports. Reports may be made anonymously, but
formal disciplinary action may not be based solely on the basis of an anonymous report.
A school employee who promptly reports an incident of harassment, intimidation, or bullying in
accordance with this Policy, and who makes this report in compliance with the procedures set
forth in this Policy, is immune from a cause of action for damages arising from any failure to
remedy the reported incident, as set forth in N.J.S.A. 18A:37-16.c.
Investigation
The Principal or designee is responsible for determining whether an alleged act constitutes a
violation of this Policy. The Principal or designee shall conduct a prompt, thorough and
complete investigation of the alleged incident. The Principal or designee will maintain a record
of each investigation regarding allegations of harassment, intimidation, or bullying.
Response to an Incident of Harassment, Intimidation, or Bullying
An appropriate response will be provided to the individual who commits any incident of
harassment, intimidation, or bullying. Some acts of harassment, intimidation, or bullying may
be isolated incidents requiring the school respond appropriately to the individual(s) committing
the acts. Other acts may be so serious or parts of a larger pattern of harassment, intimidation, or
bullying that require a response either at the classroom, school building or school district level
or by law enforcement officials.
Consequences and appropriate remedial actions for pupils who commit an act of harassment,
intimidation, or bullying may range from positive behavioral interventions up to and including
suspension or expulsion, as permitted under N.J.S.A. 18A:37-1, Discipline of Pupils and as set
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forth in N.J.A.C. 6A:16-7.2, Short-term Suspensions, N.J.A.C. 6A:16-7.3, Long-term
Suspensions and N.J.A.C. 6A:16-7.5, Expulsions.
In considering whether a response beyond the individual level is appropriate, the administrator
shall consider the nature and circumstances of the act, the degree of harm, the nature and
severity of the behavior, past incidences or past or continuing patterns of behavior, and the
context in which the alleged incident(s) occurred. The school district’s responses can range
from school and community surveys, to mailings, to focus groups, to adoption of researchbased
bullying prevention program models, to training for certificated and non-certificated
staff. The district’s responses may also include participation of parent(s) or legal guardian(s)
and other community members and organizations, small or large group presentations for fully
addressing the actions and the school district’s response to the actions, in the context of
acceptable pupil and staff member behavior and the consequences of such actions, and the
involvement of law enforcement officers, including school resource officers. The district will
also make resources available to individual victims of harassment, intimidation, and bullying,
including, but not limited to, school counseling services and environmental modifications.
Reprisal or Retaliation Prohibited
The Board prohibits reprisal or retaliation against any person who reports an act of harassment,
intimidation, or bullying. The consequence and appropriate remedial action for a person who
engages in reprisal or retaliation shall be determined by the Principal or designee after
consideration of the nature, severity and circumstances of the act, in accordance with case law,
Federal and State statutes and regulations and district policies and procedures. The
consequences for pupils will range from positive behavior interventions up to and including
suspension or expulsion. The consequences for employees will range from an admonishment to
termination of employment. The consequences for a volunteer will range from an
admonishment to dismissal from the volunteer position.
Consequences for False Accusation
The Board prohibits any person from falsely accusing another as a means of harassment,
intimidation, or bullying. Consequences and appropriate remedial action for a pupil found to
have falsely accused another as a means of harassment, intimidation, or bullying may range
from positive behavioral interventions up to and including suspension or expulsion, as
permitted under N.J.S.A. 18A:37-1 et seq., Discipline of Pupils and as set forth in N.J.A.C.
6A:16-7.2, Short-term Suspensions, N.J.A.C. 6A:16-7, Long-term Suspensions and N.J.A.C.
6A:16-7.5, Expulsions.
Consequences and appropriate remedial action for a school employee found to have falsely
accused another as a means of harassment, intimidation, or bullying shall be in accordance with
district policies, procedures, and agreements.
Consequences and appropriate remedial action for a visitor or volunteer found to have falsely
accused another as a means of harassment, intimidation, or bullying shall be determined by the
Principal or designee, after consideration of the nature, severity and circumstances of the act,
which may include a report to appropriate law enforcement officials.
Policy Publication
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This Policy will be disseminated annually to all school staff, pupils, parent(s) or legal guardian
(s), along with a statement explaining the Policy applies to all applicable acts of harassment,
intimidation, or bullying that occur on school property, at school-sponsored functions, or on a
school bus. The Superintendent shall ensure notice of this Policy appears in any publication of
the school district that sets forth the comprehensive rules, procedures, and standards for schools
within the district, and in any pupil handbook that includes the pupil code of conduct. This
notice shall also indicate the district’s Harassment, Intimidation, and Bullying Policy is
available on the district’s website.
Harassment, Intimidation, and Bullying Prevention Programs
Pursuant to N.J.S.A. 18A:37-17.(5)(c) and N.J.A.C. 6A:16-7.9(d)1.i, information regarding the
district’s Harassment, Intimidation, and Bullying Policy shall be incorporated into a school’s
employee training program.
Pursuant to N.J.A.C. 6A:16-7.9(d)3, the district is required to annually review the extent and
characteristics of harassment, intimidation, and bullying behavior in the schools of the district
and implement locally determined programmatic or other responses, if determined appropriate
by the district Board of Education.
Pursuant to N.J.A.C. 6A:16-7.9(d)1, the school district is required to annually review the
training needs of district staff for the effective implementation of the Harassment, Intimidation,
and Bullying Policy, procedures, programs, and initiatives of the district Board of Education
and implement locally determined staff training programs consistent with the annual review of
training needs and the findings of the annual review and update of the code of pupil conduct,
pursuant to N.J.A.C. 6A:16-7.1(a)3, as determined appropriate by the district Board of
Education.
Pursuant to N.J.A.C. 6A:16-7.9(d)2, the school district is required to develop a process for
annually discussing the school district’s Harassment, Intimidation, and Bullying Policy with
pupils.
Pursuant to N.J.S.A. 18A:37-15.1, this Policy shall be transmitted to the Executive County
Superintendent of Schools.
Pursuant to N.J.S.A. 18A:37-19, the school district may apply to the Commissioner of
Education for additional costs due to the implementation of the provisions of N.J.S.A. 18A:37-
13 through N.J.S.A. 18A:37-18.
N.J.S.A. 18A:37-13 through 18A:37-19
N.J.A.C. 6A:16-7.9 et seq.
Adopted: 10 September 2007
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