Sexual Harassment in Schools
- Sexual harassment is unwanted and unwelcomed sexual behavior which interferes with your right to get an education or to participate in school activities. In school, sexual harassment may result from someone's words, gestures or actions (of a sexual nature) that make you feel uncomfortable, embarrassed, offended, demeaned, frightened, helpless or threatened. If you are the target of sexual harassment, it may be very scary to go to school or hard to concentrate on your school work.
- Sexual harassment can happen once, several times, or on a daily basis.
- Sexual harassment can happen any time and anywhere in school—in hallways or in the lunchroom, on the playground or the bus, at dances or on field trips.
- Sexual harassment can happen to anyone! Girls and boys both get sexually harassed by other students in school.
- Agreement isn't needed. The target of sexual harassment and the harasser do not have to agree about what is happening; sexual harassment is defined by the girl or boy who is targeted. The harasser may tell you that he or she is only joking, but if their words, gestures or actions (of a sexual nature) are making you uncomfortable or afraid, then you're being sexually harassed. You do not have to get others, either your friends, teachers or school officials, to agree with you.
- No one has the right to sexually harass another person! School officials are legally responsible to guarantee that all students, you included, can learn in a safe environment which is free from sexual harassment and sex discrimination. If you are being sexually harassed, your student rights are being violated. Find an adult you trust and tell them what's happening, so that something can be done to stop the harassment.
- Examples of sexual harassment in school:
- touching, pinching, and grabbing body parts
- being cornered
- sending sexual notes or pictures
- writing sexual graffiti on desks, bathroom walls or buildings
- making suggestive or sexual gestures, looks, jokes, or verbal comments (including "mooing," "barking" and other noises)
- spreading sexual rumors or making sexual propositions
- pulling off someone's clothes
- pulling off your own clothes
- being forced to kiss someone or do something sexual
- attempted rape and rape
© ______ 2007, Merrill, an imprint of Pearson Education Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved. The reproduction, duplication, or distribution of this material by any means including but not limited to email and blogs is strictly prohibited without the explicit permission of the publisher.
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