Recognizing the critical need to address bias and hate violence in schools, we are working with many schools throughout Bristol County to implemented Bullying Prevention Programs to educate youth about diversity, and promote healthy attitudes towards others. They have also begun to implement zero-tolerance policies to deal with children who violate school safety rules and regulations. These strategies represent important first steps toward breaking the cycle of school violence and creating a safe school environment.

According to the National Education Association, "Bullying and violence causes 160,000 fearful children to miss one or more school days each month." Bias-motivated bullying (including malicious teasing, threats, physical abuse, obscene gesturing and name-calling) can have far reaching effects on the victims of these acts. Children who are victims of violence of any kind are more likely to experience mental health concerns, which can lead to both physical issues and/or negative social behavior(s), such as headaches, stomachaches, difficulty concentrating, decline in school performance, irritability, depression, isolation, withdrawal and in some cases, thoughts of suicide.

Children from all walks of life converge in America's schools on a daily basis with the expectation that their differences will be respected, and that school will provide an environment that nurtures diversity and protects against bias, prejudice, harassment, threats and acts of violence.

The National Mental Health Association offers the following suggestions to guide your discussions with children about school violence:


Encourage children to talk about their concerns and to express their feelings.
Talk honestly about your own feelings regarding school violence.
Validate the child's feelings.
Empower children to take action regarding school safety.
Discuss the safety procedures that are in place at your child's school.
Create safety plans with your child.
Recognize behavior that may indicate your child is concerned about returning to school.
Keep the dialogue going.

 

This past Spring, the Massachusetts Legislature passed an Anti-Bully Law (M.G.L. Ch.71 Sec.370) that will affect all Massachusetts schools. The Bristol County Sheriff's Office will provide training to local school departments and will work with administrators to discuss the effects of the new law to create a plan of prevention.

 

The training will cover the following:


What is Bullying?

Prevention Techniques

Bullying vs. Harassment

Cyberbullying

Mandatory Reportable Acts

Policies

 

Note: There is no fee for any of our bully prevention trainings. As with all BCSO educational programs, this is a free service provided to the communities of Bristol County.

 
 

For more information or to schedule a training for your local school, please contact:

Linda M. Pacheco, Director
Public Safety Education

323 Mill St. New Bedford, MA

Phone: (774) 628-0029

 

 
EDUCATORS:
 
 
 
 

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Bristol County Sheriff's Office Address: 400 Faunce Corner Road, Dartmouth, MA 02747 Phone: 508.995.6400 Web: www.bcso-ma.us