Rockaway Beach Bullying Lawyer
While childhood can inevitably be an awkward time, adults are responsible for creating safe environments for children to grow, learn, and thrive. Although the New York School System has measures in place to identify and stop bullying, these incidences continue. You and a Rockaway Beach bullying lawyer can stop these actions. If a school or other organization fails to protect your child from bullying, your family may qualify for monetary damages through a personal injury claim.
What Is Bullying?
Bullying occurs when one or more students intentionally inflict physical, psychological, or emotional damage on another student. Bullying is rarely an isolated incident and often escalates over time. The pack mentality can also embolden a group of kids to single out one child because ‘everyone is doing it.’ Bullying commonly involves:
- Hitting, punching, slapping
- Teasing a child about their differences
- Excluding the child from social activities
Repeated taunts cause great emotional and psychological damage to vulnerable children to the point where many teens and pre-teens have committed suicide. A Rockaway Beach bullying attorney may be able to hold the school district that allowed this behavior accountable. School personnel, as well as the bully and the bully’s parents, may also be liable.
The Rise of Cyber-Bullying
Cyber-bullying has become widespread as internet and social media use continues to grow amongst younger generations. Bullies can now use platforms such as Facebook to publicly threaten, ridicule, or harass other students outside of the classroom. Some tactics include coercing a student into sending intimate pictures and then posting them on social media or distributing them to others in a text message. Some bullies use Photoshop to create images that embarrass their target. Bullies also pretend to be someone else, perhaps a prospective date, and then reveal their private interactions to others.
School Districts Must Protect Children
New York public school districts must adhere to the Dignity for All Students Act (“DASA”), which requires every school to prevent bullying and take a proactive approach when a bully is reported or caught. DASA imposes the obligation for school districts to appoint a DASA coordinator to oversee investigations when there are reports of bullying. All teachers and administrators are tasked with acting like a ‘reasonably prudent parent’ to protect children under DASA. Talk to a Rockaway Beach attorney if your child experiences bullying to determine whether the school board or a specific staff member failed in this duty.
What Parents Can Do
Although children may try to cover up bullying because they are embarrassed or scared of retaliation, parents should consult with teachers and their child’s principal to establish there are issues the school district should handle under DASA. School districts that fail to act, such as by suspending or removing the bully from the classroom, may be held liable in a lawsuit against the district. A bully’s parents can also be held liable to compensate the bullied child’s family if they know their child is bullying another and do not act to stop it.
A Rockaway Beach Bullying Attorney Protects Your Children
Bullying, particularly at school, has always been around. However, that does not make it less serious that these egregious acts often lead to long-term psychological and sometimes physical harm.
New York schools are supposed to solve this issue. When they do not, a parent of a bullied child may have the right to take legal action. Talk to a Rockaway Beach bullying lawyer to discuss how we could help protect your children.