Resources

Public School Recognition Division


Bullying Resources



What should I do if my child is the target of bullying?

It is critical that children and young adults feel safe in the educational environment. From a procedural perspective, the most appropriate course of action in addressing bullying issues is to contact the school principal. If after contacting the school principal your concerns remain, you may consider contacting the district superintendent for assistance. It is crucial that the superintendent be made aware of such issues if they continue unabated.

Authority and responsibility to administer discipline and respond to acts of bullying rests with the local board of education, through the office of the superintendent of schools and building administration. If your concerns are still not resolved, you may consider contacting the local board of education. If, after exhausting all inquiries at the district level, your concerns remain, you may consider contacting the office of the regional superintendent of schools that holds supervisory authority over the schools in your county. A listing of regional offices/superintendents can be found on the following website: http://www.isbe.net/regionaloffices/pdf/roedirectory.pdf.

Finally, the United States Department of Education, through the Office of Civil Rights (OCR), directs school districts to look at each bullying incident not only as a violation of bullying policy, but as a possible action of discriminatory harassment. If discriminatory harassment has occurred, the school district must take steps to end the harassment, regardless of any discipline imposed for bullying. A complaint of discrimination can be filed by anyone who believes that a school that receives Federal financial assistance has discriminated against someone on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, disability, or age.

The following is a link to the OCR complaint form:  http://wdcrobcolp01.ed.gov/CFAPPS/OCR/complaintform.cfm.  The person or organization filing the complaint need not be a victim of the alleged discrimination, but may complain on behalf of another person or group. Before filling out the complaint form, it might be useful to read the information in the following link to understand how the Office of Civil Rights handles bullying complaints at http://www2.ed.gov/about/offices/list/ocr/complaintintro.html. You may also contact OCR at 1‐800‐421‐3481.