Bullying is a serious matter that threatens the physical, emotional, and mental health of its victims. The PCA community does not tolerate any form of bullying. Administration and staff will deal promptly with all reported and/or observed instances of bullying.
Bullying is not the same as isolated acts of rude or mean behavior. As Christians, we do not condone rudeness or meanness at any level. We expect our students, staff, and parents to treat one another with respect, kindness, and love. However, because of its more serious and harmful nature, bullying will be dealt with differently than rude or mean behavior. Therefore, it is important to understand the distinction.
Rude vs Mean vs Bullying: Know the Difference
- Rude: Inadvertently saying or doing something that hurts someone else. Incidents of rudeness are usually spontaneous, unplanned inconsideration based on thoughtlessness, poor manners or narcissism, but not meant to hurt someone else.
- Mean: Purposefully saying or doing something to hurt someone once (or maybe twice). The main distinction between "rude" and "mean" has to do with intention. While rudeness is often unintentional, mean behavior very much aims to hurt or depreciate someone.
- Bullying: Intentionally aggressive behavior, repeated over time, that involves an imbalance of power. Experts agree that bullying entails three key elements: an intent to harm, a power imbalance and related acts or threats of aggressive behavior.
Source: Spokane Public Schools, https://www.spokaneschools.org/Page/387
There is also a difference between bullying and peer conflict. PACER’s National Bullying Prevention Center defines them this way:
Conflict is a disagreement or argument in which both sides express their views. Bullying is negative behavior directed by someone exerting power and control over another person.
Bullying Report Form