Anti-Bullying Bill Approved (House Bill 5496)
The Anti-Bullying Act of 2012, which is co-authored by AKO BICOL party-list representative Christopher Co, was finally approved.
The bill requires all elementary and secondary schools to set and adopt guidelines that will prevent and address bullying. In fact, a handbook regarding bullying prevention and measures will be given to students, parents, and teachers.
Caloocan Rep. Mary Mitzi Cajayon, also one of the co-authors, said that details of the anti-bullying policies should be conspicuously posted in school websites and school walls.
All the schools are required to submit their anti-bullying policies to the Department of Education (DepEd) within six months upon the implementation of the law.
What is bullying (in accordance to the bill)?
Bullying as any severe or repeated use of written, verbal, or electronic expression, or a physical act or gesture, or any combination by one or more students directed at another student that has the effect of actually causing or placing the latter in a reasonable fear of physical or emotional harm or damage to the property, creating a hostile environment at school, and infringing on the rights of the other students at school.
All incidences related to bullying must be reported to the division superintendents. Then, it will be send and compiled by the Department of Education (DepEd).
Afterwards, they’ll file reports to the House of Representatives’ congressional committees involved in education.
DepEd must also impose sanctions on schools that do not comply to the Anti-Bullying measures.