Ontario Standing Up For Bullied Students
McGuinty Government Making Schools Safer And More Accepting
Ministry of Education
The passage of the Accepting Schools Act will make every school safer while ensuring all students have the support they need to grow and reach their full potential.
The Act creates legal obligations for school boards and schools to prevent bullying, issue tougher consequences for bullying, and support students who want to promote understanding and respect for all. When it comes into effect this fall, it will require boards and schools to:
- Develop a bullying prevention and intervention plan with the school community and make it available to the public
- Investigate any reported incident of bullying
- Provide supports for students who have been bullied, who have witnessed bullying and who have engaged in bullying
- Have a process in place to inform parents of school bullying incidents involving their children and to discuss the supports provided
- Support students who want to lead activities that promote understanding, acceptance and respect for all
- Issue tougher consequences for bullying and hate-motivated actions - up to, and including, expulsion.
The Accepting Schools Act is an important part of the McGuinty government's plan to help all students reach their full potential by providing safe, inclusive and accepting school environments.
- Since 2004, the McGuinty government has invested over $290 million in its Safe Schools Strategy.
- A 2009 study from the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health revealed that 29 per cent of Ontario students - or nearly one in three children - reported being bullied at school.
We all have a role to play in creating a positive school climate and preventing inappropriate behaviour such as bullying, gender-based violence and bullying incidents based on homophobia, disability, race and gender in our schools. The Accepting Schools Act is an important step the government is taking to meet our responsibility to all of Ontario's students and families."