Updated reporting tool now includes human rights

Limestone Learning Foundation
Updated reporting tool now includes human rights
Posted on 10/04/2021
Image of a graphic featuring an eye, ear and hands on a keyboard and words See it, Hear it, Report it.

The Limestone District School Board recently updated its safety reporting tool to include incidents that infringe on human rights such as bullying or discrimination.

“Limestone is committed to an equitable and inclusive school climate that ensures all students, staff and members of the broader school community feel safe, comfortable, and accepted,” says Patty Gollogly, Associate Superintendent of Safe and Caring Schools. “If an incident occurs, we want students, families or staff to contact their teacher, school administration or supervisor in person to provide information about the situation, but they can also report using our refreshed online tool.”

Previously the online tool allowed students, families and staff to report incidents of bullying or safety related that might result in a violent incident or environmental concern. Now, members of the school community can report incidents of discrimination (an action or decision that treats someone unfairly by either imposing a burden on them, or denying them a privilege, benefit or opportunity enjoyed by others, because of their race, national or ethnic origin, colour, religion, age, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, marital status, family status, genetic characteristics or disability) or bullying/cyberbullying (aggressive behaviour that is typically repeated over time, and is meant to cause harm, fear or distress or create a negative environment at school for another person).

While Limestone has had a reporting tool for years, it appears there is little awareness about the presence of the reporting button among students, and it is missing key indicators that could also be used to report human rights incidents. This led former Student Trustee Namirah Quadir to present a motion to the Board of Trustees in April 2021 asking for a review and greater promotion of the reporting tool. Beginning in October, a new awareness campaign will be launched at all schools and will include posters with easily accessible QR codes to the reporting tool, video promotion, a social media campaign and leveraging student council and grade forum meetings to help spread the word.

“We are hoping that some additional education and promotion of the reporting tool will allow any incidents that are considered discrimination, harassment or bullying will be reported so that action can be taken to ensure a safe and welcoming learning and working environment for everyone,” says Gollogly.

The information, including dates and locations of incidents, will be forwarded to the appropriate school administration or supervisor for action. Please provide as much detail as possible including dates and locations of incidents. Incidents may also be reported anonymously.

“Sometimes people may not be comfortable reporting directly to the school so they can do so anonymously via the online reporting tool,” says Gollogly. “If you see it, or hear it, please report it.”

It is important to note that feedback and follow up cannot be provided to those reporting an incident if no contact information is provided. In most circumstances you can expect contact within 48 hours, excluding weekends or holidays, provided you have provided contact information.

Reported incidents of school safety or those that infringe on human rights such as bullying, or discrimination are tracked and monitored to ensure accountability and transparency. Individuals will not be identified where it would violate privacy or personal safety. Information is collected under the Municipal Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (MFIPPA), and the Education Act.

Report Safety/Human Rights Incident

The Limestone District School Board is situated on traditional territories of the Anishinaabe & Haudenosaunee.