How Do Schools Decide Whether Conflict is HIB?

The school must first conduct an investigation when bullying is reported. A school must consider many different factors to decide whether a behavior is HIB as defined in the ABR.

In making this decision, schools must take into account the facts of each case. In fact, the ABR requires schools to take certain steps. The steps required in the ABR for responding to and investigating HIB is explained in the section of this guide titled, “The 10 Steps of the HIB Complaint and Investigation Process” located on pages 17-19.

If a student’s behavior is not found to be HIB,based on the facts, schools might be required to take other actions required in the school district’s code of student conduct. To access your board of education’s code of student conduct, please contact the main office of the school or school district. The school district’s code of student conduct must be consistent with the regulations at N.J.A.C. 6A:16-7

Bullying that Leads to a Conflict

An incident that is found to be bullying could lead to a conflict in the future. If a conflict is the result of bullying, a school is required to follow the ABR when dealing with the bullying aspect of the incident. To decide whether a behavior is bullying, the school officials must think about 12 all of the facts during an investigation. Examples of bullying and conflict by grade level are provided below:

Grade Level Conflict
(Mutual disagreements,
arguments or fights)
(Intent to emotionally or physically
hurt a student; it is one sided)
Elementary School "You copied my stole my idea!"

"No I didn' copied from my picture!"
A fellow student grabs the picture you colored and tears it up, calling you names related to your religion and cultural heritage.
Middle/Junior High School "After you borrowed my basketball, I asked that you return it and you didn't!"

"I did return it, I left it on your porch!"
While practicing basketball skills in the gym, several students sit nearby and call out insulting comments about the color of your skin and your basketball skills.

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