Bullying Prevention for the South St. Paul Public Schools

  • We want to prevent bullying — before it even starts.

    The South St. Paul Public Schools are committed to giving our students the best academic experience, while addressing their social and emotional needs.  We are both proactive and reactive when it comes to dealing with bullying among our students. We are committed to developing positive staff/student relationships, and to creating a community of learners where students feel connected and comfortable reaching out to adults when issues arise.

    It can sometimes be hard to recognize bullying. Hurtful or harmful behavior becomes bullying when one person has more power and uses their power to fight, frighten or exclude other people.

    As a Teacher, Administrator, Volunteer, Contractor, or Other District Employee in the South St. Paul Schools, you must not “permit, condone, or tolerate bullying.”  

    Any person who has been a target or victim of bullying, or with knowledge or belief of conduct that may be bullying or prohibited conduct, shall report the conduct immediately to the building principal or principal’s designee.  If the incident involves a staff member, report the conduct immediately to Human Resources.

    You may be disciplined for failing to report “conduct that may constitute bullying or other prohibited conduct” or failing to make reasonable efforts to address and resolve the bullying or prohibited conduct in a timely manner. 

    What is bullying?

    Bullying encompasses a wide range of behaviors that can hurt someone. This could include, but certainly is not limited to:

    • Physical aggression
    • Teasing or name-calling
    • Spreading rumors and gossip
    • Hurtful behaviors on social media
    • Purposefully leaving someone out

    It can sometimes be hard to recognize bullying. Hurtful or harmful behavior becomes bullying when one person has more power and uses their power to fight, frighten or exclude other people. 

    How bullying impacts children

    Bullying can jeopardize children's safety and can create both short and long-term consequences for all involved. Those impacted by harmful behaviors--whether an aggressor, a target, or a bystander--may be more likely to develop academic problems and face social and emotional difficulties.

    Is bullying a part of growing up?

    Occasional conflict between two peers is a normal part of growing up, but bullying is not. During conflicts, both sides have equal power to solve a problem. When bullying occurs, however, one individual uses their power and influence to harm another. 

    What should I do if my child is being bullied?

    Children who bully may try to elicit certain reactions from the children they target. Help your child respond in ways that don't further bullying behavior, like

    • Reporting the bullying behavior to a trusted adult at school or a family member
    • Instruct your child not to fight back physically, which can prolong the bullying behavior and lead to injury
    • Model positive relationship-building skills with your child, such as being respectful, self-advocating and demonstrating empathy

    If you are concerned about bullying in your school, please contact your principal, child's teacher or school counselor. 

    While people of all ages experience some conflict in relationships, learning to recognize and respond effectively to bullying can help children learn positive relationship skills that will last a life-time.