MANILA, Philippines — After an Anti-bullying movement in the 2000s and 2010s gained popularity in the United States and United Kingdom, the Charity Act Against Bullying was formed in the United Kingdom in 2003, and National Bullying Prevention Month was declared in the United States in 2006.
In the Philippines, the House of Representatives has approved a bill requiring all elementary and secondary schools to adopt anti-bullying policies. House Bill 5496, the Anti-Bullying Act of 2012, seeks to promote greater awareness of the impact of bullying and how it can be prevented.
The bill requires that anti-bullying policies be included in the school’s student and employee handbook; details of the policies should be posted in school websites and school walls; schools shall submit their anti-bullying policies to the Department of Education (DepEd) within six months upon effectivity of the law; bullying incidents in schools must be reported to the division superintendents, who in turn shall report to the Education Secretary; and the DepEd must submit a report on bullying incidents to the appropriate congressional committee and impose sanctions on school administrators who do not implement anti-bullying policies.
Bullying is now the number one non-academic issue that most educators face, and is one of the top concerns of many parents. Defined as an act of repeated aggressive behavior in order to intentionally hurt another person either emotionally, verbally, or physically, bullying is characterized by an individual behaving in a certain way to gain power over another person. Bullies may behave this way out of jealousy or because they themselves are bullied. When they leave school, they will most likely carry on their bullying in the workplace.
With the approval of the Anti-Bullying Act of 2012, this year has started just right, providing relief for the millions of students who experience bullying in school. It is hoped that the Anti-Bullying Act of 2012 will help schools create an environment where children can develop their full potentials with suffering bullying from others.
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