Character Education


District Anti-Bullying Coordinator (ABC)
Mr. Ryan Caffrey
973-383-7573 ext.3221

At the center of our Character Education programs is TRS (Trust-Respect-Support).  These core values, continue to assist our team to collaborate and develop strategies to prevent harassment, intimidation and bullying (HIB).

The ABC is appointed by the superintendent to collaborate with the ABS (anti-bullying specialist) in each school within the district, the board of education and the chief school administrator to prevent, identify and respond to HIB of students.

School Anti Bullying Specialists

Newton High School

Halsted Middle School

Merriam Avenue School

Lisa Bechtel
973-383-7573 ext.3271

Chris Boyle
973-383-1900 ext.2246

Meghan Braccioforte
973-383-7202 ext.1246


What is the Anti Bullying Bill of Rights (ABR)?  On January 5, 2011, Governor Chris Christie signed the Anti Bullying Bill of Rights (ABR) in into law. The ABR is intended to strengthen New Jersey’s standards and procedures for preventing, reporting, investigating and responding to incidents of harassment, intimidation, and bullying (HIB) of students that occur on school grounds and off school grounds under specified circumstances.



How is Bullying Defined in the Anti Bullying Bill of Rights (ABR)?  It is important to understand the type of behavior that is considered HIB under the ABR. All of the criteria in the definition below must be present for an act to be considered HIB. The ABR defines harassment, intimidation and bullying as any gesture, any written, verbal or physical act, or any electronic communication, whether it be a single incident or a series of incidents, that:


A. Is reasonably perceived as being motivated either by an actual or perceived characteristic, such as: race, color, religion, ancestry, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, or a mental, physical or sensory disability or by any other distinguishing characteristic.

and B. Takes place on school property, at any school-sponsored function, on a school bus, or off school grounds.

that C. Substantially disrupts or interferes with the orderly operation of the school or the rights of other students.

and that D. A reasonable person should know, under the circumstances, will have the effect of physically or emotionally harming a student or damaging the student’s property, or placing a student in reasonable fear of physical or emotional harm to his person or damage to his property.

or E. Has the effect of insulting or demeaning any student or group of students.

or F. Creates a hostile educational environment for the student by interfering with a student’s education or by severely or pervasively causing physical or emotional harm to the student.



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