ACTIZEN Activity 9

Anti-Bullying Law/Policy in Schools

Type of Activity- Research Based Activity

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Picture source – https://sciennesnewsflash.blogspot.com/2014/11/anti-bullying-week.html

Introduction

“Bullying behaviour abuses an imbalance of power to repeatedly and intentionally cause emotional or physical harm to another person or group of people. Isolated instances of hurtful behaviour, teasing or arguments between individuals would not be seen as bullying.” (Torfaen definition, 2008) 

Bullying generally takes one of these four forms:  

  1. Indirect – being unfriendly, spreading rumours, exclusion, tormenting (e.g. hiding bags or books) 
  2. Physical – pushing, kicking, hitting, punching, slapping, or any form of violence 
  3. Verbal – name-calling, teasing, threats, sarcasm  
  4. Cyberbullying includes all areas of internet misuse, such as nasty and/or threatening emails, misuse of blogs, gaming websites, internet chat rooms and instant messaging,threats over text messaging and calls, and misuse of associated technology, i.e. camera and video
  5. Other types of bullying include: • Racial bullying • Homophobic bullying • Bullying based on disability,  gender, appearance, or circumstance 

In India, there is no separate legislation to deal with bullying at the school level. Bullying is prevalent at the school level in India, especially in boarding schools. However, in 2015, the HRD ministry directed CBSE schools to form anti-ragging committees at the school level, also declaring severe punishments to students indulging in bullying, including rustication (in the rarest of rare cases). 

In view of the importance of the issue of bullying and its harmful effects on students, this month we at Desh Apnayen have come up with a very interesting research activity for students to help them understand the need for an anti-bullying policy for their school and become a part of a drafting committee to set up the rules and possible punishments for themselves and their fellow school mates should a need arise 

CBSE Guidelines –http://cbseacademic.nic.in/web_material/Circulars/2015/17_Prevention%20of%20Bullying%20&%20Ragging%20in%20Schools.pdf

Expected Outcomes

  1. Students will gain knowledge about bullying, its harmful effects on students, and the importance of anti-bullying laws in their own schools. 
  1. They will recognise their own role in drafting rules and reporting cases of bullying to ensure a safe and threat-free environment in their surroundings. 
  1. They will be able to make a draft policy and understand the major components of any policy. 

Step 1 – Discussion and Video 

  1. Discuss with students what they know about bullying. Keep it informal and give a fair chance to students to speak.
  2. Play the video in the online classroom - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rgMwh5Fnp3I 
  3. Discuss the video and their comprehension of it. 
  4. Ask students to share whether they have seen any incidents of bullying around them in school or at their neighbourhood. 

Step 2 – Debrief the Session 

  1. Debrief the session with closing statements like: Bullying is harmful for everyone, be it physical or mental bullying. We should not indulge ourselves in such offences. Being an ACTIZEN, it is our duty to keep our surroundings safe; we should raise our voice against bullying and report such incidents to our parents, teachers, and siblings too. 

Step 3 – Assign the Research Task 

  1. Divide the class into 5-6 groups and assign a research task to them. Distribute the anti-bullying policy draft to each group and ask them to discuss and fill up the required fields after obtaining consensus. 
  2. Give them time of 5-7 days for research and draft policy formulation.  
  3. Ask each group to find out the required information from the school authorities (Teacher/Administrator/HM). 
  4. Ask them to check if their school already has an anti-bullying policy. If yes, they can take help of the same to fill up the required information. 
  5. Even if the school does not have the policy, they can take help of the given draft and fill it up in simple language. 

GROUP RESEARCH TASK – 

  1. Work together in your respective groups and find out about the anti-bullying policy of your school. 
  2. Read the policy in detail and try to understand the policy.  
  3. Take information on required fields like, definition of bullying, aims/purpose, bullying cases and punishments decided, members of anti-bullying policy committee, frequency of meetings, and review process. 
  4. If your school does not have an anti-bullying policy, draft a policy for your own school. 
  5. Take signatures from selected committee members and upload the same with the reflection sheet. Kindly mention names of all the students who were present in your group and who worked together. 

ANTI-BULLYING POLICY (SAMPLE DRAFT)

........................ School

Year of Formation - ...........................

 

School Statement on Bullying (To be filled by the HM/the ACTIZENS’ Club Teacher)
………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 

(*Each group can create and fill your own school’s definition in consultation with the teacher or school authorities.) 

Aims and Purpose of the Policy  

  1. To ensure a secure and happy environment free from threat, harassment, discrimination or any type of bullying behaviour.
  2. ..
  3. ..
  4. ..
  5. ...

 

What Constitutes Bullying According to ……………………………….School: (School Name with Name of Area) 

  1. For ex. Discriminationagainst any child in the school based on caste, gender, colour, etc. 

Disciplinary Actions - 

Punishments and fines can be decided against each bullying act selected and stated here -  

………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 

*Select committee members in consultation with your teacher. (If your school already has an anti–bullying policy, mention the names and designations from that document itself. In that case, signatures are not required.) 

NAME AND SIGNATURE OF THE COMMITTEE MEMBERS 

Sr. No.  Name  Designation  Signature 
    Principal   
    Trustee/Board Member (optional**)   
    Teacher/HOD   
    Teacher/HOD   
    Parent    
    Parent   
    Student/ACTIZENS’ Club Member   
    Student/ACTIZENS’ Club Member   

Evaluation: 

This policy will be reviewed by the whole staff, students, parents and the community, and their inputs will be taken as part of the school’s review cycle. 

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