How Gill-Montague Tackles Bullying On an On-Going Basis
The Gill-Montague Regional School District is a leader in proactive social and emotional curriculum that is integrated into the daily academic life of the classroom and school-wide through multiple approaches:
• “Tools of the Mind” teaches self-regulation, partner sharing and dispute resolution strategies.
• “Keeping Kids Safe” is a personal-safety curriculum from Committee for Children taught in classrooms by our school adjustment counselors.
• Responsive Classroom® strategies are utilized by all classroom teachers and administrators who have received training to teach the skills of cooperation, assertion, responsibility, empathy and self-control (CARES) to children through a variety of structures and strategies on a daily basis.
• Developmental Designs® approaches are utilized at Great Falls Middle School to also teach and reinforce the CARES skills at the adolescent level in the regular classroom setting as well as in the Circle of Power and Respect (CPR) held three times a week in home rooms.
• A Peer Mediation Program at GFMS provides an avenue for peer conflict resolution guided by a highly-skilled mediation coordinator and a team of student mediators who receive extensive and on-going training in communication and mediation skills from Franklin Mediation and training Collaborative.
• A Bully Busters group plans activities and does presentations for the middle school. It includes 6th -8th grade students.
• The STARS Program at the 6th grade level is an effort that helps students establish goals and learn how to avoid negative influences in order to reach goals they set. This includes a parent component with homework assignments for students to talk to parents about different parts of the curriculum and participate in the child’s goal development process.
• A Peer Mediation Program is also provided at Turners Falls High School in coordination with the GFMS Program with grant and technical assistance from the Franklin Mediation and Training Collaborative.
• A new Advisory Program has been launched this year to allow students to meet in small groups with faculty members to discuss school life and topical issues.
• A SafeMeasures™ Student-Led Collaborative Action Research Project in collaboration with Main Street Academix of New Hampshire is a high school initiative to strengthen student voice and leadership at Turners Falls High School beginning in the next academic year.
• NetSmartz.org. Online resource with interactive activities and games teaching children, teens, parents & educators safety on the Internet. www.netsmartzkids.org
The Gill-Montague Regional school District School Committee has approved a new comprehensive Harassment Policy that aligns with pending state bullying legislation and states, in part:
“Reports of cyber-bullying by electronic or other means, occurring in or out of school will be reviewed and, when a nexus to work or school exists, will result in discipline. Parents of students alleged to have engaged in cyber harassment will be invited to attend a meeting at which the activity, words or images subject to the complaint will be reviewed. A student disciplined for cyber-bullying will not be re-admitted to the regular school program until his or her parent(s) attend such meeting.”
The full policy is also available on the district website: http://www.gmrsd.org/index.php/district-information/anti-bullying/sexual-harassment-bullying-a-hazing-policy