Dignity For All Students Act (DASA)
The New York State Education Department has issued updated expectations for the Dignity for All Students Act. All aspects of the law and guidelines for implementation are found at www.p12.nysed.gov/sss/sedl/SEDLguidelines.pdf.
At the Academy Charter School, the necessary steps have been taken to ensure that families can send their child (ren) to school knowing everything possible is being done by staff to provide a safe, supportive, welcoming, and nurturing school environment. Not just because NYSED says it is the law, but because that is what the Academy believes in. The school thrives to provide a safe and orderly environment for all of our students.
All children have a right to attend school without the threat or occurrence of bullying, harassment, or discrimination of any type. Our staff works diligently to ensure all of our students have an educational experience that is free from these distractions.
Additionally, under the Dignity Act, schools will be responsible for collecting and reporting data regarding material incidents of discrimination and harassment.
Everyone has a part to play in the prevention of these types of problems, and in the intervention process leading to solutions, if and when incidents may occur such as:
- Physical bullying includes hitting, kicking, tripping, pinching, and pushing or damaging property.
- Verbal bullying includes name-calling, insults, teasing, intimidation, homophobic or racist remarks, or verbal abuse.
Covert or Hidden Bullying
This sort of bullying is often harder to recognize and can be carried out behind the bullied person’s back. It is designed to harm someone’s social reputation and/or cause humiliation. Covert bullying includes:
- Lying and spreading rumors.
- Negative facial or physical gestures, menacing or contemptuous looks.
- Playing nasty jokes to embarrass and humiliate.
- Mimicking unkindly.
- Encouraging others to socially exclude someone.
- Damaging someone’s social reputation or social acceptance.
Cyber bullying can be overt or covert bullying behaviors using digital technologies, including hardware such as computers and smartphones and software such as social media, instant messaging, texts, websites and other.
Cyber bullying can happen at any time. It can be in public or in private and sometimes only known to the target and the person bullying. It includes:
- Abusive or hurtful text messages, emails, posts, images or videos.
- Deliberately excluding others online.
- Nasty gossip or rumors.
- Imitating others online or using their login.
A commitment from the entire Academy community is sought to ensure that the above-mentioned offenses are addressed immediately if they are observed or reported. Students, parents, faculty, staff, and administration must work as a team and demonstrate a zero tolerance policy for any behavior that violates any one person’s right to be treated with respect and dignity when attending school, and establishing values that will extend beyond our school environment.
Incident Report forms are available in administrative offices. Once submitted officially to a staff member, an investigation and administrative action will occur within one school day. Students and families are encouraged to speak to an administrator or professional staff if an incident is suspected. Incident resolution and student safety and comfort are top priorities.
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