A student’s ability to learn and to meet high academic standards, and a school's ability to educate its students is compromised by incidents of discrimination or harassment including bullying, taunting, or intimidation. New York State’s Dignity for All Students Act (The Dignity Act, DASA) makes it the official policy of New York State that all students in public schools have the right to an education free of discrimination and harassment.
The Dignity Act includes, but is not limited to, acts of discrimination and harassment based on a student’s race, color, weight, national origin, ethnic group, religion, religious practice, disability, sexual orientation, gender (defined to include gender identity or expression), or sex.
The Dignity Act defines material incidents of harassment as a single incident or a series of related incidents where a student is subjected to harassment and/or discrimination by a student or school employee on school property or at a school function that creates a hostile environment by conduct, with or without physical contact and/or by verbal threats, intimidation or abuse, of such a severe or pervasive nature that:
- has or would have the effect of unreasonably interfering with a student’s educational performance, opportunities or benefits, or mental, emotional and/or physical well-being; or
- reasonably causes or would reasonably be expected to cause a student to fear for his or her physical safety.
The Churchville-Chili Board of Education is committed to providing a safe and productive learning environment within its schools that promotes respect, dignity and equality. The Board recognizes that acts of discrimination, such as harassment, hazing and bullying, are detrimental to student learning and achievement. These behaviors interfere with the mission of the district to educate its students, and they disrupt the operation of the schools. Such behavior affects not only the students who are its targets but also those individuals who participate and witness such acts.
To this end, the Board strictly prohibits all forms of discrimination, such as harassment, hazing and bullying on school property, on school buses, and at school sponsored events and/or activities whether occurring on or off campus.
The Dignity Act was signed into law on Sept. 13, 2010, to be effective on July 1, 2012. Amendments to the Dignity Act became effective on July 1, 2013.
The Dignity Act also amended Section 801-a of New York State Education Law regarding instruction in civility, citizenship and character education by expanding the concepts of tolerance, respect for others and dignity to include: an awareness and sensitivity to harassment, bullying, discrimination and civility in the relations of people, including but not limited to, different races, weights, national origins, ethnic groups, religions, religious practices, mental or physical abilities, sexual orientations, gender identity and sexes. In addition, curriculum includes instruction in the safe, responsible use of the Internet and electronic communications.
In accordance with the Dignity Act, the district will take necessary steps to address matters related to harassment, bullying and/or discrimination of students. If you have questions/concerns related to suspected harassment, bullying and/or discrimination of students, or if you wish to make a report, please contact the appropriate Dignity Act Coordinator listed below.