BULLYING IN SCHOOL

BBD 1-27-2017

(What the LAW says: RA 10627, IRR and DO 40. s. 2012 of DepEd)

DEFINITION AND KINDS OF BULLYING

“BULLYING” refers to any SEVERE, or REPEATED use by one or more students of a WRITTEN, VERBAL or ELECTRONIC EXPRESSION, or a PHYSICAL ACT or GESTURE, or any combination thereof, directed at another student that has the effect of actually causing or placing the latter in REASONABLE FEAR of physical or emotional HARM or DAMAGE to his property; CREATING A HOSTILE ENVIRONMENT at school for the other student; infringing on the rights of another student at school; or materially and substantially disrupting the education process or the orderly operation of a school; such as, but not limited to, the following:
 
1. Any unwanted physical contact between the bully and the victim like punching, pushing, shoving, kicking, slapping, tickling, headlocks, inflicting school pranks, teasing, fighting and the use of available objects as weapons;
 
2. Any act that causes damage to a victim’s psyche and/or emotional well-being;
 
3. Any slanderous statement or accusation that causes the victim undue emotional distress like directing foul language or profanity at the target, name-calling, tormenting and commenting negatively on victim’s looks, clothes and body;
 
4. “CYBER-BULLYING” or any bullying done through the use of technology or any electronic means. The term shall also include any conduct resulting to harassment, intimidation, or humiliation, through the use of other forms of technology, such as, but not limited to texting, email, instant messaging, chatting, internet, social media, online games, or other platforms or formats as defined in DepED Order No. 40, s. 2012; and
 
5. Any other form of bullying as may be provided in the school’s child protection or anti-bullying policy, consistent with the Act and this IRR. (SEE: Section 3,b)
 
The term “bullying” shall also include:
 
6. “Social bullying” – refers to any deliberate, repetitive and aggressive social behavior intended to hurt others or to belittle another individual or group.
 
7. “Gender-based bullying” – refers to any act that humiliates or excludes a person on the basis of perceived or actual sexual orientation and gender identity (SOGI).

DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES OF EDUCATION STAKEHOLDERS (Read: Schools)

1. Adoption of Policies Against Bullying.
 
RULE 3 of the IRR states that: ALL public and private KINDERGARTEN, ELEMENTARY and SECONDARY schools SHALL ADOPT POLICIES to address the existence of bullying in their respective institutions. Such policies shall BE REGULARLY UPDATED and, at a minimum, shall include provisions on prohibited acts, prevention and intervention programs, mechanisms and procedures. (Sec. 3 of RA 10627) (Emphasis by the author)
 
2. Adoption of Bullying Prevention Programs
 
ALL public and private schools shall adopt bullying prevention programs. These programs shall BE APPLICABLE TO ALL STUDENTS regardless of level of risk or vulnerability to bullying. Said programs shall also be comprehensive, multi-faceted and shall involve all education stakeholders and personnel. (RULE 4 of IRR of RA 10627)
 
3. Adoption of Intervention Programs
 
There shall be intervention programs to promote the continuity of comprehensive anti-bullying policies. Intervention refers to a series of activities which are designed to address the following:
 
a. issues that influence the student to commit bullying;
b. factors that make a student a target of bullying; and
c. effects of bullying. (Sec. 7 of RULE 4, IRR of RA 10627)
 
4. Other Duties of Central, Regional and Division Offices, Teachers and Other School Personnel, and Students SEE DepEd DO No. 40, series of 2012, Sections 4-9.
 
5. Establish a Child Protection Committee

PROHIBITED ACTS (DO. 40, S. 2012, Section 3, O-M)

1. Child Abuse
2. Discrimination Against Children
3. Child Exploitation
4. Violence Against Children in School
5. Corporal Punishment
6. Any Analogous or Similar Act

SANCTIONS

A. Section 14 of the IRR provides Sanctions for Non-compliance
 
1. Public Schools…shall be subject to administrative disciplinary proceedings in accordance with the Civil Service Rules and the relevant issuances of the Department of Education.
 
2. Private Schools…shall be subject to appropriate disciplinary sanctions as may be imposed by the private school and the Secretary of the Department of Education, through the Regional Director, may suspend or revoke the permit or recognition of a private school that fails to comply with the requirements under the Act or this IRR.
 
B. If the bullying incident or retaliation resulted in serious physical injuries or death, the case shall be dealt with in accordance with the provisions of Republic Act 9344 or the “Juvenile Justice and Welfare Act.” (Section 10 of the IRR)
 
C. Sanctions for Prohibited Acts (Child Abuse, Discrimination Against Children, Child Exploitation, Violence Against Children in School, Corporal Punishment and Any Analogous or Similar Act)
 
1. shall be penalized in ADMINISTRATIVE PROCEEDING as GRAVE or SIMPLE MISCONDUCT depending on the gravity of the act. (DepEd DO No 40 s. 2012, Section 15)
 
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