Harassment, Intimidation or Bullying Information
The Mercer County Special Services School District provides an educational setting that promotes student growth and fulfills the goals and objectives of the individual educational plan (IEP). Learning is best achieved in a positive and supportive environment. A quality educational program requires the combined efforts of administrators, staff, students, and parents in identifying and dealing with issues that influence learning. This group has the shared responsibility to recognize and reinforce appropriate behaviors and to establish disciplinary procedures that deal with inappropriate behaviors.
Our Board of Education prohibits acts of harassment, intimidation, or bullying of a student. A safe and civil environment in school is necessary for students to learn and achieve high academic standards. Harassment, intimidation, or bullying, like other disruptive or violent behaviors, is conduct that disrupts both a student's ability to learn and a school’s ability to educate its students in a safe and disciplined environment. Since students learn by example, school administrators, faculty, staff and volunteers should be commended for demonstrating appropriate behavior, treating others with civility and respect, and refusing to tolerate harassment, intimidation, or bullying.
School Anti-Bullying Specialist
To act as the primary school official responsible for preventing, identifying, and addressing incidents of harassment, intimidation, or bullying in school, each school has appointed an anti-bullying specialist who will chair our school-based Student Safety Teams
District Anti-Bullying Coordinator
Joseph F. Cappello School
Cathy Smeresky, Counselor
Mercer Elementary School
Amy Felsher, Counselor
Mercer High School
Heidi Musick, Counselor
NJ Department of Education
School Climate Coordinator
School Safety Team
Each school has a School Safety Team comprised of teachers, support staff, counselors, and parents whose duties include educating the community, including pupils, teachers, administrative staff, parents, and our community, to prevent and address harassment, intimidation, or bullying of pupils.
Definition of Harassment, Intimidation, or Bullying
The Board of Education prohibits acts of harassment, intimidation, or bullying of a student that take place on school property, at any school-sponsored function, or on a school bus. Students are expected to treat one another with respect. A safe and civil environment in school is necessary for students to learn and achieve high academic standards. “Harassment, intimidation, or bullying” means any gesture, written, verbal or physical act, or any electronic communication (including telephone, cell phone, computer, or pager) that is motivated by any actual or perceived characteristic such as race, color, religion, ancestry, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, a mental, physical or sensory disability, or any other distinguishing characteristics. Acts of harassment, intimidation, or bullying may also be a pupil exercising power and control over another pupil, either in isolated incidents (e.g., intimidation, harassment) or patterns of harassing or intimidating behavior (e.g., bullying).
The school district may impose consequences for acts of harassment, intimidation, or bullying that occur off school grounds such as cyber-bullying.
All complaints of alleged harassment, intimidation, or bullying are to be reported to the building principal or designee.