Coordinated School Health - Bullying and Cyberbullying

This page provide the definitions and laws related to bullying and cyberbullying. There are also links to resources to assist in educating others about bullying and cyberbullying.

Bullying 

Texas Education Code (TEC) §37.0832 identifies bullying as a single significant act or a pattern of acts by one or more students directed at another student that exploits an imbalance of power and involves engaging in written or verbal expression, expression through electronic means, or physical conduct and that

  • has the effect or will have the effect of physically harming a student, damaging a student's property, or placing a student in reasonable fear of harm to the student's person or of damage to the student's property;
  • is sufficiently severe, persistent, or pervasive enough that the action or threat creates an intimidating, threatening, or abusive educational environment for a student;
  • materially and substantially disrupts the educational process or the orderly operation of a classroom or school, or infringes on the rights of the victim at school.

Cyberbullying 

Cyberbullying is bullying that involves the use of any electronic communication device, including through the use of a cellular or other type of telephone, a computer, a camera, electronic mail, instant messaging, text messaging, a social media application, an Internet website, or any other Internet-based communication tool.

Texas Laws Related to Bullying and Cyberbullying

Texas Education Code Chapter 37 Section 37.001 Student Code of Conduct

Texas Education Code Chapter 37, Section 37.0832 (David’s Law) Bullying prevention policies and procedures

Texas Education Code Chapter 37, Section 37.217 Community education relating Internet safety

Texas Education Code Chapter 37, Section 37.218 Programs on dangers of students sharing visual material depicting minor engaged in sexual conduct

Texas Education Code Chapter 25, Section 25.0342 Transfer of students who are victims of or have engaged depicting minor engaged in sexual conduct     

It is important for each student to report any bullying or threats to the nearest teacher or adult at school as soon as possible so school officials may take appropriate action.  
  

If you have concerns about bullying, meet with the campus principal to express your concerns. If your child is receiving special education services, go to the ARD committee to focus on the problem and arrange a plan to intervene at the campus level. For additional guidance related to addressing your concerns, we encourage you to visit your district office for clarification. 

Related Links 

The following links provide information about bullying and cyberbullying: 

 A link to a survey of middle school students' experiences with bullying (outside source) 

 Connect Safely (outside source) 

 Cyberbullying Research Center (outside source) 

 CyberWise (outside source) 

 National School Climate Center’s BullyBust (outside source)

 Pacer Center’s Kids Against Bullying (outside source) 

 Pacer Center’s Teens Against Bullying (outside source) 

 The Texas Attorney General’s Office (outside source)

 U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Health Resources and Services Administration web site (outside source) 

 Wired Safety (outside source) 

Support Organizations and Hotlines 

The following links provide support services to students:

American Foundation for Suicide Prevention (outside source) (888) 333-2377

Mental Health America (outside source) (800) 969-6642

National Domestic Violence (outside source) Hotline (800) 799-7233, (800) 787-3224 (TTY)  

National Runaway Safeline (outside source) (800) 786-2929 

National Victim Center (outside source) (202) 467-8700

Trevor Helpline for Gay, Lesbian and Bisexual Youth (outside source) (866) 488-7386

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Child Welfare Information Gateway (outside source)

Curriculum Standards and Student Support Division
(512) 463-9581
healthandsafety@tea.texas.gov