CONGRESS OF THE PHILIPPINES
Second Regular Session
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
H. No. 5496
BY REPRESENTATIVES CAJAYON, CO, BATOCABE, ANGARA, GARBIN,
ESCUDERO AND HERRERA-DY, PER COMMITTEE REPORT NO. 1515
AN ACT REQUIRING ALL ELEMENTARY AND SECONDARY
SCHOOLS TO ADOPT POLICIES TO PREVENT AND ADDRESS
THE ACTS OF BULLYING IN THEIR INSTITUTIONS
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the Philippines in
SECTION 1. Short Title. – This Act shall be known as the
“Anti-Bullying Act of 2012”.
SEC. 2. Acts of Bullying. – For purposes of this Act, “bullying” shall
refer to any severe or repeated use by one or more students of a written, verbal
or electronic expression, or a physical act or gesture, or any combination
thereof, directed at another student that has the effect of actually causing or
placing the latter in reasonable fear of physical or emotional harm or damage
to his property; creating a hostile environment at school for the other student;
infringing on the rights of the other student at school; or materially and
substantially disrupting the education process or the orderly operation of a
school; such as, but not limited to, the following:
(a) Any unwanted physical contact between the bully and the victim
like punching, pushing, shoving, kicking, slapping, tickling, headlocks,
inflicting school pranks, teasing, fighting and the use of available
objects as weapons;
(b) Any act that causes damage to a victim’s psyche and/or emotional
(c ) Any slanderous statement or accusation that causes the victim
undue emotional distress like directing foul language or profanity at the target,
name-calling, tormenting and commenting negatively on victim’s looks,
clothes and body; and
(d) Cyber-bullying or any bullying done through the use of
technology or any electronic means.
SEC. 3. Adoption of Anti-Bullying Policies. – All elementary and
secondary schools are hereby directed to adopt policies to address the
existence of bullying in their respective institutions. Such policies shall be
regularly updated and, at a minimum, shall include provisions which:
(a) Prohibit the following acts:
(1) Bullying on school grounds; property immediately adjacent to
school grounds; at school-sponsored or school-related activities, functions or
programs whether on or off school grounds; at school bus stops; on school
buses or other vehicles owned, leased or used by a school; or through the use
of technology or an electronic device owned, leased or used by a school;
(2) Bullying at a location, activity, function or program that is not
school related and through the use of technology or an electronic device that is
not owned, leased or used by a school if the act or acts in question create a
hostile environment at school for the victim, infringe on the rights of the victim
at school, or materially and substantially disrupt the education process or the
orderly operation of a school; and
(3) Retaliation against a person who reports bullying, who provides
information during an investigation of bullying, or who is a witness to or has
reliable information about bullying;
(b) Identify the range of disciplinary administrative actions that may be
taken against a perpetrator for bullying or retaliation which shall be
commensurate with the nature and gravity of the offense;
(c) Establish clear procedures and strategies for:
(1) Reporting acts of bullying or retaliation;
(2) Responding promptly to and investigating reports of bullying or
(3) Restoring a sense of safety for a victim and assessing the student’s
need for protection;
(4) Protecting from bullying or retaliation of a person who reports acts
of bullying, provides information during an investigation of bullying, or is
witness to or has reliable information about an act of bullying; and
(5) Providing counseling or referral to appropriate services for
perpetrators, victims and appropriate family members of said students;
(d) Enable students to anonymously report bullying or retaliation:
Provided, however, That no disciplinary administrative action shall be taken
against a perpetrator solely on the basis of an anonymous report;
(e) Subject a student who knowingly makes a false accusation of
bullying to disciplinary administrative action; and
(f) Educate parents and guardians about the dynamics of bullying, the
anti-bullying policies of the school and how parents and guardians can provide
support and reinforce such policies at home.
All elementary and secondary schools shall provide students and their
parents or guardians a copy of the anti-bullying policies being adopted by the
school. Such policies shall likewise be included in the school’s student and/or
employee handbook and shall be conspicuously posted on the school
walls and website, if there is any.
The Department of Education (DepEd) shall include in its training
programs, courses or activities which shall provide opportunities for school
administrators, teachers and other employees to develop their knowledge and
skills in preventing or responding to any bullying act.
SEC. 4. Mechanisms to Address Bullying. – The school principal or
any person who holds a comparable role shall be responsible for the
implementation and oversight of policies intended to address bullying.
Any member of the school administration, student, parent or volunteer
shall immediately report any instance of bullying or act of retaliation
witnessed, or that has come to one’s attention, to the school principal or school
officer or person so designated by the principal to handle such issues, or both.
Upon receipt of such a report, the school principal or the designated school
officer or person shall promptly investigate. If it is determined that bullying or
retaliation has occurred, the school principal or the designated school officer or
(a) Notify the law enforcement agency if the school principal or
designee believes that criminal charges under the Revised Penal Code may be
pursued against the perpetrator;
(b) Take appropriate disciplinary administrative action;
(c) Notify the parents or guardians of the perpetrator; and
(d) Notify the parents or guardians of the victim regarding the action
taken to prevent any further acts of bullying or retaliation.
If an incident of bullying or retaliation involves students from more than
one school, the school first informed of the bullying or retaliation shall
promptly notify the appropriate administrator of the other school so that both
may take appropriate action.
SEC. 5. Reporting Requirement. – All schools shall
inform their respective schools division superintendents in writing about the
anti-bullying policies formulated within six (6) months from the effectivity of
this Act. Such notification shall likewise be an administrative requirement prior
to the operation of new schools.
Beginning with the school year after the effectivity of this Act, schools
shall report to their respective schools division superintendents all incidents
involving school bullying. The schools division superintendents shall compile
these data and report the same to the Secretary of the DepEd who shall
likewise formally transmit a comprehensive report to the Committee on Basic
Education of both the House of Representatives and the Senate.
SEC. 6. Sanction for Noncompliance. – In the rules and regulations to
be implemented pursuant to this Act, the Secretary of the DepEd shall
prescribe the appropriate administrative sanctions on school administrators
who shall fail to comply with the requirements under this Act. In addition
thereto, erring private schools shall likewise suffer the penalty of suspension of
their permits to operate.
SEC. 7. Implementing Rules and Regulations. – Within ninety (90)
days from the effectivity of this Act, the DepEd shall promulgate the necessary
rules and regulations to implement the provisions of this Act.
SEC. 8. Separability Clause. – If, for any reason, any provision of this
Act is declared to be unconstitutional or invalid, the other sections or
provisions hereof which are not affected thereby shall continue to be in full
force or effect.
SEC. 9. Repealing Clause. – All laws, decrees, orders, rules and
regulations or parts thereof which are inconsistent with or contrary to the
provisions of this Act are hereby repealed, amended or modified accordingly.
SEC. 10. Effectivity. – This Act shall take effect fifteen (15) days
after its publication in at least two (2) national newspapers of general
Copyright (c) 2013 ACCESS TO JUSTICE ADVOCATES (AJA). All rights reserved.
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