Mokena SD 159 takes on bullying
BY GINGER BRASHINGER Correspondent October 5, 2012 2:10PM
Updated: November 8, 2012 11:58AM
Mokena School District 159 is taking steps to improve its response to complaints about bullying.
The board last week approved adding four new policies as an addendum to the parent/student handbook for the current school year.
Under the new plan, bullying report forms will be available at all of the district’s three school buildings and online. The forms must be filled out by the victim of the bullying or a representative.
Any student or district employee can file a complaint, which will be handled by the principal or a representative in the appropriate school building.
Parents or guardians of both the target and the aggressor will be notified of the outcome of the investigation into the complaint, in accordance with state and federal privacy laws.
The district considered using the Stop.Walk.Talk online bullying reporting system, but Supt. Steve Stein said a three-year commitment would cost the district about $6,700.
District 159 technology director Steve Hastings was able to create an online survey that will allow the district to similarly track data about reported bullying, Stein said.
The district has been looking into its bullying policies after the mother of a student complained earlier this year that her fourth-grade daughter was a victim of verbal bullying by a male classmate for the last five months of school, causing her grades, appetite, blood sugar and weight to drop.
The woman started a Facebook page — “We want an anti-bullying program at Mokena School District 159” — that has attracted more than 140 comments.