What You Can Do

Sometimes parents, guardians and/or students tell teachers or the Principal in their school about mean, cruel and/or bullying behavior and they do not respond in helpful ways.

There are many reasons why educators sometimes do not respond helpfully:

  • They may not know what to do.
  • They may believe that this is not the responsibility of educators and the school to respond.
  • They may not know about your States bully prevention laws and/or educational policies.
  • They may believe that this is “normal” behavior.
  • They may believe that this is something that students need to “sort out” themselves.

In fact, most States now have laws and/or educational policies that prohibit harassment and bullying behavior. To learn about bully prevention as well as positive school climate laws and educational policies in your State, click here.

It is not ok for others to treat your child in mean, cruel and/or bullying ways.

We always suggest that if this is occurring, first contact your school Principal. If you believe that the school Principal is not responding in a helpful and responsible manner, we suggest that you contact the following people:

  1. The Superintendent of your district.
  2. The head of your local school board.
  3. Your State Department of Education’s Safe Schools coordinator. (To learn who this person is and what their phone number is, go to this site and call the Education Commissioner's office. They will be able to provide you with the name and phone number of the State leader who is responsible for safe schools.)
  4. Your regional Equity Assistance Center. The 10 Equity Assistance Centers (EACs) are funded by the U.S. Department of Education under Title IV of the 1964 Civil Rights Act. The EACs assist states, districts, and schools to promote equal educational opportunity regardless of race, gender, or national origin and ensure that all schools provide students the opportunity to succeed academically.