Sunrise Montessori Academy Anti-Bullying Policy
What is Bullying?
Sunrise Montessori Academy follows the definitions of bullying and cyber-bullying as defined by Illinois State Law (105 ILCS 5/27-23.7):
“Bullying” includes “cyber-bullying” and means any severe or pervasive physical or verbal act or conduct, including communications made in writing or electronically, directed toward a student or students that has or can be reasonably predicted to have the effect of one or more of the following:
(1) Placing the student or students in reasonable fear of harm to the student’s or students’ person or property.
(2) Causing a substantially detrimental effect on the student or students’ physical or mental health.
(3) Substantially interfering with the student’s or students’ academic performance; or
(4) Substantially interfering with the student or students’ ability to participate in or benefit from the services, activities, or privileges provided by a school.
Bullying may take various forms, including without limitation one or more of the following: harassment, threats, intimidation, stalking, physical violence, sexual harassment, sexual violence, theft, public humiliation, destruction of property, or retaliation for asserting or alleging an act of bullying. This list is meant to be illustrative and non-exhaustive.
“Cyber-bullying” means bullying through the use of technology or any electronic communication, including without limitation any transfer of signs, signals, writing, images, sounds, data, or intelligence of any nature transmitted in whole or in part by a wire, radio, electromagnetic system, photo-electronic system, or photo-optical system, including without limitation electronic mail, Internet communications, instant messages, or facsimile communications. “Cyber-bullying” includes the creation of a webpage or weblog in which the creator assumes the identity of another person or the knowing impersonation of another person, as the author of posted content or messages if the creation or impersonation creates any of the effects enumerated in the definition of bullying in this Section. “Cyber-bullying” also includes the distribution by electronic means of a communication to more than one person or the posting of material on an electronic medium that may be accessed by one or more persons if the distribution or posting creates any of the effects enumerated in the definition of bullying in this Section.
Bullying is contrary to State law and the policy of the school administration. Illinois law also prohibits bullying on the basis of actual or perceived race, color, religion, sex, national origin, ancestry, age, marital status, physical or mental disability, military status, sexual orientation, gender-related identity or expression, unfavorable discharge from military service, association with a person or group with one or more of the aforementioned actual or perceived characteristics, or any other distinguishing characteristic. However, as per subsection (a-5) of 105 ILCS 5/27-23.7, Sunrise Montessori’s bullying prevention policy is not intended to infringe upon any right to exercise free expression or the free exercise of religion or religiously based views protected under the First Amendment to the United States Constitution or under Section 3 of Article 1 of the Illinois Constitution.
Reporting and Investigation Policies and Procedures of Bullying at Sunrise Montessori Academy:
Sunrise may not request or require a student to provide a password or other related account information in order to gain access to the student’s account or profile on a social networking website. If Sunrise decides to conduct an investigation after a complaint of cyber-bullying with sufficient evidence, it may require a student to cooperate and share content over the course of the investigation. Appropriate federal and state laws governing student privacy rights will be followed in both the investigation of the incident.
Sunrise Montessori Academy does not tolerate any instance of bullying on the premises of the school as well as any off-campus school-sponsored activities. Consequences of any instance of bullying from students, parents, or teachers and staff will be met with a “three-strike” consequence system:
1. Verbal warning and communication with respective parent and mediation of involved parties within 24 hours of administration being notified.
2. Written warning to be kept on file and mediation of involved parties.
3. Expulsion of student or teacher/staff member
All instances of bullying, as well as all threats, suggestions, or instances of self-harm determined to be the result of bullying, will be reported to the parents or legal guardians of those involved.
Any investigation will be completed within ten (10) school days after the date the report of the incident of bullying was received. Sunrise Montessori will assist any and all parties involved with finding and receiving appropriate restorative measures such as counseling, community-based services, social-emotional skill building, etc.
Restorative measures are meant to be an alternative to exclusionary discipline and
(i) are adapted to the particular needs of the school and community,
(ii) contribute to maintaining school safety,
(iii) protect the integrity of a positive and productive learning climate,
(iv) teach students the personal and interpersonal skills they will need to be successful in school and society,
(v) serve to build and restore relationships among students, families, schools, and communities, and
(vi) reduce the likelihood of future disruption by balancing accountability with an understanding of students’ behavioral health needs in order to keep students in school.
(vii) increase student accountability if the incident of bullying is based on religion, race, ethnicity, or any other category that is identified in the Illinois Human Rights Act
Any reports and investigations of bullying will include:
1) The frequency of victimization.
2) Student, staff, and family observations of safety at a school.
3) Identification of areas of a school where bullying occurs.
4) The types of bullying that are common or occurring.
5) Bystander intervention or participation.
The completed investigation will be available internally for Sunrise Montessori staff and available to involved parents and guardians. Parents and guardians will be able to request a meeting with the Director to discuss the investigation, its findings, and any actions taken to address the incident. Interventions that can be taken to address bullying, which may include, but are not limited to, school social work services, restorative measures, social-emotional skill building, counseling, school psychological services, and community-based services.
Sunrise Montessori Academy prohibits any reprisal or retaliation against any person who may report an act of bullying. Any person who engages in reprisal or retaliation will be evaluated for expulsion within Sunrise Montessori Academy by the Director and Board Members. Any person who is found to have falsely accused another of bullying as a means of retaliation or as a means of bullying will be required to participate in restorative measures, as listed above, and may be subject to suspension or expulsion for refusal to do so.
This policy is based on the engagement of a range of school stakeholders, including students and parents or guardians. The policy is posted on Sunrise Montessori’s website and its public internet website and is distributed with the school’s handbook as well as annually as updates are made.
As part of the process of reviewing and re-evaluating the policy under subsection (d) of this Section, contains a policy evaluation process to assess the outcomes and effectiveness of the policy that includes, but is not limited to, factors such as the frequency of victimization; student, staff, and family observations of safety at a school; identification of areas of a school where bullying occurs; the types of bullying utilized; and bystander intervention or participation. The non-sectarian nonpublic school may use relevant data and information it already collects for other purposes in the policy evaluation. The information developed as a result of the policy evaluation must be made available on the website of the school. If the website is not available, the information must be provided to school administrators, school board members, school personnel, parents, guardians, and students.
This policy is consistent with the views of Sunrise Montessori Academy.
All individual instances of bullying, as well as all threats, suggestions, or instances of self-harm determined to be the result of bullying, to be reported to the parents or legal guardians of those involved under the guidelines provided in paragraph (4) of this definition.
The school shall make diligent efforts to notify a parent or legal guardian, utilizing all contact information the school has available or that can be reasonably obtained by the school within the 24-hour period.
Please report any incidents of bullying to the director Ms. Singh; all reports will be handled with confidentiality.
via call or text at 630-29-5196 or
via email at firstname.lastname@example.org
Updated on: August 14th, 2023.