Dover Union Free School District Code of Conduct

Dignity for All Students Act (DASA)

Dover Union Free School District (DUFSD) is committed to reaching the highest standards of education for our students and to ensuring all students feel safe and welcome within our schools. The Dover Board of Education, administration and staff, are committed to providing an educational environment where students enjoy school and have the opportunity to learn free from harassment and bullying. All students have the right to attend, participate and grow in school without physical or emotional harm. As such, we require all students to be respectful and considerate of others, and follow the Code of Conduct in our buildings and at all school-sponsored activities.

The Dover Union Free School District Code of Conduct, in accordance with DASA, specifically prohibits discrimination, harassment, bullying, taunting, hurtful teasing, and cyber-bullying based on the following characteristics or perceived characteristics, including but not limited to:

1. Biased-related conduct: Behavior that is motivated by a target/victim’s race, color, creed, national origin, gender (including gender identity), sexual orientation, age, marital or partnership status, family status, disability, alienage, or citizenship status

2. Race: The groups to which individuals belong, identify with, or belong in the eyes of the community

3. Ethnic Group (Ethnicity): An affiliation with a particular group, country or area of origin (distinct from citizenship or country of legal nationality), race, color, language, religion, customs of dress or eating, tribe or various combinations of these characteristics

4. National Origin: An individual’s country of birth, country of origin, or the country of origin of an individual's family or spouse

5. Color: Complexion tint or skin pigmentation. Color discrimination can occur within the same racial or ethnic group

6. Religion: Religious or spiritual belief of preference, regardless of whether this belief is represented by an organized group or affiliation having religious or spiritual tenets

7. Religious Practices: Religious observances or practices that may include attending worship services, praying, wearing garb or symbols, displaying religious objects, adhering to certain dietary rules, proselytizing or other forms of religious expression, and/or refraining from certain activities

8. Disability: Means (a) a physical, mental or medical impairment resulting from anatomical, physiological, genetic or neurological conditions which prevents the exercise of a normal bodily function or is demonstrable by medically accepted clinical or laboratory diagnostic techniques or a record of such an impairment or (b) a condition regarded by others as such an impairment, provided, however, that in all provisions of this article dealing with employment, the term must be limited to disabilities which, upon the provision of reasonable accommodations, do not prevent the complainant from performing in a reasonable manner the activities involved in the job or occupation sought or held (Education Law §11[3] and Executive Law §292[21])

9. Gender: A person’s actual or perceived sex and includes a person’s gender identity or expression (Education Law §11[6]).(6)

10. Sexual Orientation: Actual or perceived heterosexuality, homosexuality, or bisexuality (Education Law §11[5])

11. Sex: The biological and physiological characteristics that define men and women

12. Other: Can include, but is not limited to, physical characteristics age, socio-economic status, health condition, housing, domestic relationships, social/academic status, etc.

Social and emotional growth will remain a major focus of our programs at each school. Ongoing training for all stakeholders will take place to ensure a positive school climate that ingrains care and respect for all. We support programs that prevent discrimination, bullying and harassment; these programs highlight the importance of speaking up and not promoting bullying when one witnesses it happening (the need to be the active bystander). We need everyone to work together to help end bullying! To this end, we have created this website as a comprehensive resource, inclusive of information about bullying, harassment and DASA. We are confident that by learning and collaborating, we can make great strides to ensure everyone feels safe in Dover Schools.